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For Friends & Whānau

Welcome to our family and whānau page. If someone close to you has an addiction that they’re trying to overcome, you are an important part of their journey to recovery. It helps to understand what’s going on and what to expect, so here’s some useful information.

Also, have a look at our Time for a Change series on our resources page

Recognising addiction in others

People are always talking about how to recognise addiction. Our experience with all sorts of addicts tells us to watch out for these behaviours:

  • Mood swings
  • Lethargy
  • Explosive outbursts
  • Minimal interaction with family
  • Trouble with the police
  • Changes in eating patterns
  • Frequent absences from school/work
  • Sudden changes of friends
  • Unexplained need for money
  • Declining school/work performance
  • Disappearing money and valuables
  • Impaired memory
  • Decrease in activities that may have previously been important to the person
  • Poor concentration
  • Withdrawing socially

Tips for helping and coping

  • If you think someone you know has a substance use or gambling problem, here are some steps you can take: 
  • Talk about it with a drug and alcohol professional, another family member or a close friend who knows the person concerned
  • Find out what resources and support services are available
  • Choose an appropriate time to talk with the person concerned and explain how you feel about what is going on
  • Work with them to come up with a set of guidelines for their behaviour, with agreed consequences if the guidelines are broken
  • Support and encourage positive behaviour
  • Ensure the physical safety of yourself and any children involved

More information for family/whānau can be found here.

Getting someone into an Odyssey programme

To talk about getting help for someone who has a drug, alcohol or gambling problem, please contact us.