Letters to a drug addict can be a helpful form of support for recovering addicts. Anyone suffering from drug addiction knows how difficult it can be to get back on the right track. Friends and family members may have trouble trying to help or not know exactly what to say or do to help their loved one get back onto the road to recovery. In these situations, writing a letter can provide both powerful motivation and opportunity for change. Writing a letter to a drug addict can be an effective way to help them recover from their addiction. This will only be effective, of course, if the letter is actually read.
What are the things to consider when writing a letter to a drug addict?
Don’t write a long letter to a drug addict. They will most likely only read the first paragraph and then skim through the rest of the letter in less than a minute.
Write about precisely what you would like them to do when recovering from their addiction: stay clean, get counseling, etc.
You don’t want your letter to be all negative (“You’re an idiot” or “I hate you”). Instead, think of ways you can help them stop their addiction and be more productive in life (i.e., stay clean for [insert something important] such as [a daughter’s birthday]).
Letters are more effective than emails or text messages because it’s more personal.
Be Clear About What You Want From Them
Let them know that you’re willing to help them get clean and stay clean. Be this by offering money, time, etc. Let them know that you will no longer tolerate their addiction (to the best of your ability).
Check For Spelling And Grammar Mistakes
Make sure every word is spelled correctly; if they can’t read the letter, it won’t do any good!
Sign The Letter With Your Name And Phone Number
If you don’t sign your name to the letter, there’s no way for them to contact you (this might give them some privacy). For them to contact you, however, they need your full name and phone number.
Make Sure The Letter Is Not Fake
The only way to tell if it’s fake is to sign the letter with something other than their real name or an alias. If the person has trouble reading or writing, don’t hold this against them; simply explain that you know they can read and write better than that. This will not help your relationship with the drug addict at all (since it may be taken as an insult).
Don’t Accuse Them Of Anything Specific
You want to avoid sounding like a police officer interrogating a suspect—the drug addict will most likely not read past the first 2 sentences if you do.
Don’t Threaten The Drug Addict With Something Specific
Don’t say, “If I find out that you still have your drugs, I’ll call the police” or something to this effect. This might be taken as a threat, which will only make the drug addict close off from reading more of your letter.
Avoid Using Excessive & Repetitive Capitalization
Remember that these are people—not animals or monsters! Treat them like humans instead of objects (i.e., don’t yell at them). You want to make sure they know you’re serious about what you’re saying, but keep it formal and respectful at the same time.
Put The Letter In An Envelope And Mail It To Them
You want to make sure they actually read it, don’t you? If you drop off the letter on their porch, there’s a good chance they won’t even open the envelope (especially if it looks like an anonymous accusation). Mailed letters are more likely to be opened by the drug addict than dropped-off ones.
Keep Trying To Contact Them
If one of your letters doesn’t work, keep trying! As long as you’re respectful and pleasant about what you say (i.e., “I love you”), they’ll most likely listen to what you have to say. Don’t let them get away with their addiction!
What are the potential consequences of writing a letter to a drug addict?
If you write them a letter, there is no guarantee that they will read it (especially if they’re trying to stay clean). If they do read it and act upon what you say, then the consequences could be good. However, suppose your relationship with the drug addict has become so negative that you can only contact them through writing letters (i.e., via text or email). In that case, you might want to check in for yourself whether this person deserves your care and attention at all. Writing a letter to someone who abuses drugs may bring about positive effects in the long run. First off, your letter might help stop their addiction completely. Secondly, it may help improve your relationship with this person they get clean again. For more information call us today at 833-497-3812. Our counselors are available 24 hours a day