For most of us Christmas is a time of happiness and giving, but for those who are addicted or have substance abuse problems this time of year is especially stressful. The rate of suicide tends to spike around the year end holiday season and there are a number of reasons why this occurs. Some of those who are addicted no longer have the support of family and friends. Loved ones may have given up on the addict because of a reluctance to accept treatment. Families and friends of addicts also suffer extreme stress and a feeling of helplessness. Addiction creates tension in the family unit and the individual may push away those who try to help. When the holidays come around the user may be isolated, alone, and in the grip of depression.
Suicide hotlines report large numbers of calls during the Christmas holiday period, and some who are determined to end their suffering actually succeed. When addiction becomes severe it may seem like the pull of the substance or activity is stronger than anything else. Failed attempts at treatment may also contribute to depression, and this may fuel an even greater level of substance abuse. When thoughts of suicide occur the individual may be under the influence, and this can lower the inhibitions and cause the user to actually act out on this threat, If you or a loved one has substance abuse or addiction issues the holidays are rough, but there are effective treatments that can finally end this cycle once and for all.