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How To Deal with The Manipulation of An Addict

When you care about someone who has an addiction, you may find some of their conduct illogical, unsettling and we know this very well here at La Jolla Recovery. Two ordinary threads you can identify in almost all addictions (alcohol, eating, sex, or drugs) are lies and manipulation from the addict. How do you cope with their behavior, and what are the most expected tactics in their manipulation?

So, why do addicts/alcoholics lie and control?

How do you identify when you are being managed, and what can you do? The responses to these critical inquiries will influence how you address routine addict behavior in your affinities and your function in persuading someone with an addiction to pursue treatment.

how do i deal with addict who manipulates depressed middle woman driver sitting inside car feeling doubtful confused about difficult decision

how do i deal with addict who manipulates depressed middle woman driver sitting inside car feeling doubtful confused about difficult decision


The essential thing to recognize when someone you know is addicted is that addiction induces modifications in the brain. It’s common to hear that addiction has “commandeered” the brain, resulting in people behaving in ways they might never have before stumbling with drugs or alcohol.

Addiction starts when the brain adjusts to the frequent use of a drug. Commonly, the brain rewards beneficial behaviors such as socializing with family and friends, exercising, or eating a healthy and delicious meal. Correspondingly, the brain’s ability to infer permits us to adequately cogitate consequences and determine which acts we shouldn’t take.

However, drugs and alcohol deliver an immediate, unnatural sense of gratification to the reward system that outweighs the enjoyment of everyday activities. This results in the addict desiring more and more of the drug, regardless of the outcomes.


Why do addicts lie and manipulate in distinctive ways?

If you have been exposed to a case of addiction in your life, you may have realized that drug addicts’ control-centered conduct leans to look alike even to very different individuals.

Addiction conduct patterns may be easily identified if you become acquainted with these everyday instances of alcoholic/addiction manipulation:

Asking for Financial Help

No matter the substance or conduct, addiction is costly. A person coping with addiction will spend more to acquire drugs or alcohol at the expenditure of their other economic obligations. Asking for cash or other favors is a sign of how addicts manipulate, and they don’t tell you that the money is going towards feeding their addiction. Instead, they may say they face an unforeseen bill or need help with debt. This is a strategy to attempt to prevent you from asking any questions.

Provoking Conflict

Being intentionally confrontational is characteristic of addict behavior within relationships. It has a purpose. The addict may start a dispute to divert attention from a necessary dialogue about their addiction. Suppose you are busy protecting yourself from emotional attacks. In that case, you aren’t capable of managing the core problem of substance abuse, and it may also be some long before you feel secure to bring up the subject in the future.

Isolation and Self-Harm

When addicts don’t obtain what they desire, they may try to penalize you by harming themselves. They may withdraw communication, separating themselves and leaving you to wonder how they are. They may even self-harm by purposely getting into car accidents, fights, flunking at school, drinking, driving, or refusing to eat. In severe cases, self-harm may manifest in actions such as cutting themselves.


Some people with an addiction will accuse everyone but themselves of their circumstances. You will have to engage with arguments that imply or state that you are responsible for the person’s troubles and manipulation. Whether the essence is slight or the person flat out says it, the sentiment you will hear is, “look what you had me do.”

Being Overly “Friendly”

The circle of addictive behavior routines usually includes a period where the addict gives the impression of transforming for the better. They may suddenly seem remorseful, pitiful, and genuinely repentant — when in truth, this is just another strategy to hold you emotionally powerless and unprepared.

how to deal manipulation addict red young woman hands brain woman emotion mind emotions emotional psychology psychology mental health

how to deal manipulation addict red young woman hands brain woman emotion mind emotions emotional psychology psychology mental health

Redirecting the Blame

Another illustration of an addict’s manipulative behavior is their inclination to redirect the blame away from themselves. They don’t take accountability for their acts and will find ways to reproach anyone or any situation other than themselves. In their reason, their addiction isn’t their responsibility. Rather, it becomes the responsibility of family members who didn’t “love” them or a stressful job — anything to keep them from having to take accountability themselves.

Advice to cope with an Addict’s Manipulation

When you recognize that the addict is manipulating you, it’s critical to recall that you have every liberty to defend yourself from harm, physically and emotionally. You are allowed to speak your views and necessities, and you merit to have ministered with respect. Although the person trying to control you will not like to listen, you must establish boundaries.

You can still love the person without renouncing your happiness or surrendering to their manipulative behavior. Sometimes the manipulation causes anxiety and guilt. By empowering yourself and rejecting to be manipulated, you may even enable them to realize that they need to change and seek help for their addiction.

  • Tips:
  • Say “no.”
  • State your boundaries, such as, “I will not give you cash.”
  • Be honest when you think they are disrespectful, and immediately tell them.
  • Remind yourself that you are not the cause of the difficulty, and the addict must take responsibility.
  • Keep a distance and avoid confrontation with the person if you can.
  • Prioritize to be emotionally and physically well enough to encounter manipulative conduct.
  • Recollect that the addict is responsible for their joy, not you.
  • Contact La Jolla Recovery at San Diego, schedule an intervention, and we will help you pull through.

Even though these tips may deem harsh and not loving, at La Jolla Recovery, we have seen the results these tips bring. After all, if they can no longer control the individuals around them into sustaining their drug addiction or drinking, it will be much more complicated to continue living in their addiction.

Check out our other publications at La Jolla Recovery.

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