Your Life: Community help is available for those dealing with addiction

Charlotte Lankard: During September, National Recovery month focuses primarily on the person needing treatment, but the family members of someone abusing alcohol or drugs also need help and too often don't know where to go.
BY CHARLOTTE LANKARD clankard@opubco.com Published: September 17, 2012
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National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) is another resource. Addiction and mental illness go hand in hand. People who are anxious or feel out of control often self-medicate. While that may provide temporary comfort, it only compounds their problems. NAMI offers free education and support groups for family members. www.ok.nami.org.

A Stephen Ministry program is another resource that may be found in your church. Stephen Ministry is named after Stephen, the first lay person appointed by Jesus' disciples to “go out and help meet the needs of the people.” A Stephen minister is not a professional counselor, ordained pastor or problem “fixer.” He or she is a Christian friend who is dependable, a good listener, nonjudgmental and will keep your confidence and walk beside you for as long as you need.

There is help available. The first step is up to you, but on the other side you will find caring people offering guidance and support.

Email Charlotte Lankard at clankard@opubco.com.