Knowledge is power, and you’ll need all the ammunition you can get to help a loved one battle their addiction to drugs or alcohol. The focus may be on the person seeking recovery but those involved also need to understand what’s happening to be the best help.
The following seven books are focused on both addicts and loved ones supporting them. All can fill you with knowledge, understanding, and a fresh perspective on the disease of addiction. Let’s learn more about these books including what they’re about and why they’re recommended.
How Al-Anon Works
If you’ve never been to an Al-Anon meeting, you should find one right away. Alcoholics have Alcoholics Anonymous (AA), drug addicts have Narcotics Anonymous (NA), and parents and loved ones of alcoholics and addicts have support too in Al-Anon. Al-Anon functions similarly to AA and NA but is meant to be support for parents or spouses of those in active addiction or recovery.
How Al-Anon Works is Al-Anon’s ‘Big Book’ or the main text that explains how the program works, what you can do to succeed in the program, reflections, and personal stories from others who have suffered through a loved one’s addiction. Just as AA and NA have helped several people in long-term recovery, Al-Anon can help you recover too.
AA or NA ‘Big Book’
You don’t have to be an alcoholic or addict to read the AA and NA ‘Big Books.’ Big Book is the nickname given to AA and NA’s most basic text. The text includes how the 12-step program works, how others have worked it, education about alcoholism and addiction, and personal stories of how others used AA and NA for long-term sobriety.
The hardest part of a loved one’s addiction is understanding it. This is why alcoholics and addicts turn to other addicts and alcoholics for help. Reading the Big Book, or at least the personal stories in the back can help you better understand what your loved one is going through and why things in the past happened.
The Thinking Person’s Guide to Sobriety
Do you need a more in-depth book that explains sobriety in a different way? Do you consider yourself a critical or deep thinker? If you have a loved one that’s going through active addiction or recovery you should try The Thinking Person’s Guide to Sobriety.
Author Bert Pluymen was a highly-successful lawyer who hid his drinking for years before finally saying enough and taking an indirect approach to his sobriety. The book contains personal stories from Pluymen’s life, facts and figures on alcoholism and how it works, jokes, and several anecdotes that will have you horrified, intrigued, and learning something about the disease of addiction.
Under the Influence / Beyond the Influence
Under the Influence was a ground-breaking book when released in 1984. The full title Under the Influence: A Guide to the Myths and Realities of Alcoholism, emphasized the book’s leaning on science to understand alcohol and addiction. Under the Influence was one of the first widely-read books that promoted alcoholism as a disease, and not as a failure of character.
Beyond the Influence was released in 2000 and can be thought of as Under the Influence’s follow-up or companion book. Beyond the Influence focuses on breakthroughs in addiction science since the release of Under the Influence sixteen years earlier.
This Naked Mind
This Naked Mind is not focused solely on alcoholics, but for anyone that fears alcohol has become a problem in their lives or those are afraid to let go of booze for good. The same lessons can be applied to prescription pills and other drugs. This Naked Mind discusses the science of alcoholism and addiction, but also societal standards, psychological breakthroughs, and even what part new industry has played in creating a culture of booze hounds.
This Naked Mind is one of the best books that deal not only the disease of addiction but the background noise and culture that can lead people down the path to alcoholism or drugs. The fresh take on addiction is a reason this book has become one of the most popular at treatment centers across the country.
Recovery: Freedom from Our Addictions
Most books about addiction and how it affects our loved ones can be dry, even boring or depressing, that’s why we recommend Recovery: Freedom from Our Addictions by comedian and actor Russell Brand. The book gives a fresh perspective on what its like to deal with addiction in all forms including drugs, alcohol, and online shopping.
Things get serious when a loved one is addicted, but Brand approaches the topic of recovery with precision, sincerity, and a sense of humor that can put a smile on your face during a tough time.
Beautiful Boy tells the story of David Sheff and his son’s battle against meth addiction. The book’s title comes from Sheff’s simple question – “What happened to my beautiful boy?” Thousands of parents of addicts and alcoholics go to sleep or wake up asking themselves the same question when their child is battling addiction or in recovery. Sheff offers a poignant and intimate portrait into his own life to help other parents get through the same challenge.
If you’re having trouble connecting with others about your child’s addiction, Beautiful Boy can offer understanding, lessons on patience, and other methods and stories that can help you sleep better.
Beautiful Boy is a New York Times bestseller and was recently adapted into a major motion picture.
There are several great books and literature about addiction and alcoholism, but these are among our favorites for parents and loved ones of addicts. The more you read, the better you can help your loved one fight their addiction.
If you are addicted to drugs or alcohol, there is no better choice than to contact a professional facility that can help you now. Luckily JourneyPure’s professional treatment is available to help you get sober once and for all.
Do not allow your addiction to continue for one more day. Reach out for the help you deserve by contacting us right now. We can help you detox safely and guide you through the steps you need to take to build a strong foundation for your recovery.
You owe it to yourself. Call us today.
Chris Clancy is the in-house Content Manager for JourneyPure’s Digital Marketing team, where he gets to explore a wide variety of substance abuse- and mental health-related topics. He has more than 20 years’ experience as a journalist and researcher, with strong working knowledge of hospital systems, health insurance, content strategy, and public relations. He lives in Nashville with his wife and two kids.