Psychologists point out that not only the consumption of alcohol, drugs, medication and smoking create addiction. The category of addictions also includes bulimia (the tendency to overeat) and anorexia (the tendency to starve), excessive shopping, gambling and video games, kleptomania and excessive use of the Internet. “In a broad sense, we call addiction a frequent behavior, but precisely it refers to something that the person in question cannot live without, even though it is not biologically vital. So, if a person cannot refrain from drinking alcohol, smoking, shopping, overeating, starving himself, gambling or using the computer, then he can you call dependent on the respective substance or behavior”, explains Anca Munteanu, specialist in psychotherapy and psychological counseling for children, adolescents and parents at the Center for Action Psychology and Psychotherapy.
Attention to the sufferings of the teenager!
As for how the parent can help his child get rid of an addiction he has noticed, the first step is to find out the cause that led to the emergence of this habit. “We can think about the inner cause of these addictions, which indicates a suffering, a lack that the object of addiction is meant to fill. For example, bulimic girls say that they have no pleasure other than food. Teenagers who consume alcohol do so either to “have fun” or to “forget about sadness, loneliness”. Therefore, behind any such behavior there is a suffering, often well masked”, draws the attention of the psychologist.
The cause, identified with the help of open discussions
Often, parents, from their point of view, try to provide their children with everything they think
they need, but most of the time, they don’t see what they lack or what their suffering is. “Parents notice something wrong with their child after some time since the addiction appeared, and then they get scared and try to solve the problem. The best way to help a child get rid of addiction consists in the family approach to the problem, thus trying to detect the suffering that lies behind the addiction”, he says
. It is advisable for the parent to have open discussions with the child, with the help of which to discover what are the lacks, sufferings of the teenager and how he feels within the family. It is also good for the parent to take into account the events that have marked the family over time and that could represent the reason for the addiction that appeared in the adolescent. The parent must help his children overcome the addiction with tact and kindness and explain to them as best as possible the risks to which they are exposed. In the situation where, following the involvement of the parent, the addiction cannot be overcome, specialist consultation is necessary, in which the parent must also take the initiative.