It is time for the holidays and, if you are like most people, you probably enjoy being with friends and family and exchanging gifts with them. However, if you have a recovering drug addict or heavy drinker in your family, buying the perfect gift for them might seem hard. After all, addicts can be hard to buy for because what you think might be perfect gift could actually make their addiction problems worse. Furthermore, you might worry that they will eventually sell or exchange the gift to buy more drugs or alcohol.
In today's post, we have assembled a list of the worst gifts that you can give to a recovering drug addict or heavy drinker. You'll want to be sure to avoid buying these so you do not make matters worse. If you need help thinking of positive gifts for your addicted loved one in recovery, take a look at this previous post. If you, or someone you love and care about, have a substance abuse problem or an issue with drinking too much, call Legacy Freedom. We offer the best drug and alcohol rehab in Columbus OH. We are an outpatient facility that uses only holistic therapy programs.
Terrible Gifts for Recovering Addicts and Alcohol abusers
Avoid Buying These Gifts for Drug Addicts
Drugs and Alcohol - This one should be a given, but there are still some really ignorant people in the world. Giving a recovering addict drugs or alcohol is a terribly stupid idea. This type of gift will either trigger a relapse, cause an argument, or create a lot of pain and frustration. Even if your friends or loved ones are not in recovery, you should still refrain from gifting drugs or alcohol over the holidays.
Drug Paraphernalia - This gift idea is another no-no and at the top of our list. No, that hand blown glass pipe is not artwork, and it is not something that will look great on your mantle. The only thing that drug paraphernalia does is reinforce drug use. Drug use is typically part of a ritual, so any sort of fancy bong, pipe, stash box, or other decorative piece will only remind the person of the enjoyment they felt when they were using. Buying gifts like this is akin to buying actual drugs and will generally end with the same bad results.
Movies That Glamorize Drug Use - Drug users have a tendency to be attracted to movies, books, and music that glamorize and romanticize drug use. For them it's like getting high has some sort of mystique associated with it. These types of movies make drug users feel like they're a part of some sort of specialized subculture to the mainstream. Movies like Scarface, Trainspotting, Blow, and Traffic are great examples of movies to avoid buying. Also, avoid buying box sets from TV shows like House, Nurse Jackie and Weeds.
Avoid giving books, posters and music that focus heavily on drug use. These can be from magazines, like "High Times," and drug using bands and musicians like the Grateful Dead, Snoop Dogg, and Wiz Khalifa. These types of gifts can create triggers and relapse situations.
Anti-Drug Books, Posters and other Media - We get it, you think that you are helping by buying the best and latest self help books, CDs, or other anti-drug propaganda and media that promotes sober living. These gifts will typically only accomplish a few negative things, and it hardly works out as you had planned. First, this type of gift will probably make the person feel bad and ashamed about their situation. They might even become more reclusive during the holidays because of it. Secondly, the person could perceive this type of gift as a joke, as if you are making light of their situation. You'll probably just find it easier to avoid giving any sort of gift like this.
Avoid Buying These Gifts for Heavy Drinkers
Alcohol - This might be one of the most given gifts each year. While it is perfectly OK to give a bottle of wine, a fifth of bourbon, or even a six pack of craft beer to a normal person, it's not OK if they're a recovering alcoholic. Giving alcohol is an easy gift to come up with, but it is the absolute worst gift for someone with a heavy drinking problem. Just take a moment and you'll see that you're sending them a message that it's perfectly fine to have a drink around the holidays, which is the furthermost thing from the truth. Giving alcohol is only adding more fuel to the fire.
Books About Alcohol- This type of gift is right in line with actually giving alcohol! Why would anyone ever give a heavy drinker, or recovering alcoholic, a recipe book for making cocktails, or a how-to guide for making their own wine or craft beer? Beats me! Avoid giving any sort of literature that inspires a person to try out different drinks or ways to make their own alcohol.
Glassware - There are lots of beautiful glassware sets to be found. From fancy wine glasses to classy decanters, these pretty pieces serve only one purpose to a recovering alcoholic, and that is drinking alcohol. If you buy a heavy drinker a nice set of glasses, expect them to use it.
Bar Tools or Gadgets - These items are almost inline with the drug paraphernalia mentioned above. Those with a heavy drinking problem often have their own little bar at home, complete with all the items you would find at a downtown bar. Furthermore, heavy drinkers love fancy ice buckets, cocktail shakers, corkscrews, wine stoppers, bottle openers, etc. Who wouldn't? They're fun gifts, right? Not for the recovering alcoholic! All these gifts do is reinforce and glamorize alcohol.
Hopefully these tips will help you avoid buying a terrible gift this year and avoid the awkwardness that comes afterwards. Again, if you missed our previous post about gift buying and recovering addicts, we urge you to take a few minutes to go back and read it. You'll find a few great ideas on some positive gift ideas for this year's holiday season.
Dependable Drug Treatment and Alcohol Rehab in Columbus OH for the Holidays
Drug addiction, alcohol abuse and other forms of substance abuse are controlling diseases that can get worse over the holidays and the winter season. Legacy Freedom Treatment Center knows how important it is to receive effective, comprehensive treatment that is specialized to each individual, and not a group. Our outpatient drug and alcohol rehab in Columbus OH includes holistic and alternative therapies that are customized to fit your needs. It’s not just a 12-step, or a one-size-fits-all program; it’s about real recovery with real people. Our outpatient methodology also allows your loved ones to be able to be home for the holidays, go to work, and attend school!