There is no doubt that alcohol and other drugs can become all consuming for the person dependent on these substances. But what is worth remembering is that alcohol and other drugs can also become all consuming to family members. In my view, alcohol and other drugs want to take everyone down with them and it's so easy for this to happen, if we let it. Family members desperate to understand and help their loved ones to stop using can become obsessed with alcohol or other drugs. They can think about how much is being used? When it's being used? How often it's being used? Where it's being used? Who it's being used with? Why it's being used? What's being used? And then there is the worst case scenario thinking about the person using alcohol or other drugs. Thoughts like... their life is going 'down the gurgler', they'll never get a job, the police will become involved, they may end up going to prison, they may become mentally unwell, they may die, and so it goes on...it's exhausting, stressful and soul destroying.
It's hard but possible for family members to not let alcohol or other drugs become all consuming. What we need to do is remember to care for ourselves. So stop driving yourself mad trying to understand how, when, where and why. Take a break from thinking and talking about alcohol and other drugs. Set aside some time just for you, catch-up with a friend, spend some time with other members of the family, have a laugh, go to a movie, go for a walk... Have a rest from drugs and get some balance back into your life. I know this strategy works and it's so helpful for everyone.