​​​Clermont County Save Line: 513.528.SAVE (7283)

HOW TO TALK TO A LOVED ONE

Here are some tips for talking and listening to your loved one:

DO:

  • Remember that this is about your loved one’s health and well-being. It’s not about bad behavior and punishments, but about addiction.
  • Come from a place of love and concern, not anger.
  • Keep a cool head and speak calmly instead of yelling.
  • Withhold judgment so they feel they can tell you the truth.
  • If you are concerned your child is misusing opiates, talk about your own memories and mistakes so that you can better relate to each other.
  • Focus on the behavior, not the person. Your loved one may honestly fear disappointing you or looking imperfect in your eyes.
  • Ask open-ended questions. Ask questions that require more than a "yes" or "no" answer.
  • Talk about treatment options and recovery. Provide hope to your loved one that recovery is possible.
  • Remember that addiction is a disease and requires treatment as does any other disease.

DON’T:

  • ​Get defensive if your loved one makes a remark that feels like a personal attack — use it as a discussion point instead.
  • Degrade and punish. Emphasize again and again that drug use is dangerous, but that your loved one is not a bad person if using drugs.
  • Just take what your loved one says at face value – listen to the tone of voice, and pay attention to facial expressions, body language and difficulty finding the right words.
  • Get distracted. Give your loved one your undivided attention. 

Find Out Information About Treatment Options 
​Through scientific research, we know that drug addiction can be successfully treated to help people stop abusing drugs and lead productive lives. Visit the “treatment” tab to find out more information on treatment options in our area.

Provide Support, Understanding and Hope to the Loved One
​Opiates, particularly heroin are very addictive and it is very difficult for individuals to stop. Remember that the very nature of addiction may mean that your loved may reject help.

Know the Signs of an Opiate Overdose and What to Do
​Individuals can easily overdose on opiates, particularly heroin. See Signs of Overdose.

Get a Narcan Kit 
Naloxone or Narcan kits are available for FREE at Clermont Recovery Centera division of Greater Cincinnati Behavioral Health, with only a few minutes of training required. You can also get Narcan at a pharmacy without a prescription. Narcan can save a live if someone has overdosed. Keep the kit handy. Call 911 after administering Narcan. The person will not be prosecuted. 

This information was obtained from the following sources:
​National Institute on Drug Abuse
Partnership for Drug Free Kids
Drug Policy Alliance
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration