How loyal of a friend are you? Would you keep a hard drug addiction secret? What if your friend became addicted to crack or painkillers? What if your friend asked you not to tell anyone? Would you talk to drug rehab centers in the area or would you try to stay out of this complex scenario?
While it is polite not to gossip about your friend to other people, you should not keep a drug addiction a secret forever. The best course of action is to confront your friend and express your love and concern. Your intention is not to belittle him or her, but to get them the help they need. While you can postpone telling someone, make it clear that you cannot keep a secret forever. Ultimately, you want to encourage your friend to admit the problem and to get help.
Of course, you cannot control the actions of your friend. Ultimately, he or she must take action, by approaching drug rehab centers in the area. You cannot commit someone into a voluntary clinic. You cannot “tell on someone”, not in a legal sense. While you could approach a family member (and this is your call) of your friend and talk about your suspicion, you cannot take much more action than that.
You do not have to violate your friend’s trust. Simply do not lie, nor promise anything. Keeping a dark secret like drug addiction a private matter is not helpful to your friend, and it could be misconstrued as a negligent act by the rest of the family. After all, how would you feel if your friend died from an overdose and the grieving family then asked you if you had an idea about a drug addiction? It’s better to be safe than sorry, and this is the philosophy of all drug rehab centers. It’s also better to risk losing a friendship rather than enable someone to continue taking harmful drugs.
If your actions are motivated by love and concern, the friend should have no reason to be angry. He or she might become angry. Denial is a common response to an accusation of truth. Be strong and firm, always ready to offer assistance. It is best to confront a person privately on the matter and encourage him/her to seek help, rather than embarrassing your friend publicly.
In the end, you and your friendship will be saved! Think about drug rehab centers as the true solution.