This is the second post in the series of tactics used by addicts and alcoholics to avoid accountability. Accountability is necessary for all of us. People in recovery need to do everything in their power to remain accountable—this will help them deal with temptations and triggers when they come up. Continuing where we left off at number 4.

4. Lying by omission – This is especially challenging for someone who would like a way to justify behaviors that could lead to using. It is real easy to lie by leaving out important details, since it doesn’t really seem like lying at all. It is really easy to simply say, “I forgot” or “I didn’t think it was important” or … well, I think you get the idea. Lying by omission is still lying no matter how you “slice” it, a lie is a lie. Which is your favorite?

5. Vagueness -- this is similar to lying by omission but there are some subtle differences. Being vague is speaking in general terms when you “know” you should be more specific. An example might be, “I was late because I ran into an old friend,” when the truth is “I was late because I ran into an old drinking buddy and we were making plans to get together sometime.” Do you see the difference? You say “an old friend” because you know the truth will lead to an argument. And, the truth will lead to an argument since it is definitely a path to a possible relapse. Some other vague examples might be “I will think about it,” “maybe,” “if I feel like it,” “I guess,” and “I don’t know.” Do any of these sound familiar?

6. Diverting attention away from ourselves – this can be done is a lot of different ways. Some good examples are introducing irrelevant material, nitpicking unimportant details, bringing up old arguments, or distracting the other person with things like questioning the motives of the other person (i.e., “it’s because I’m black” or “you want me to fail, don’t you?). These are just a small representation of the thousands of possibilities. How many of these have you done?

7. Attempting to confuse others – many of the previous examples could also fall into the category of trying to confuse others. The ways you can confuse others is only limited by your personal creativity. My experience with addicts and alcoholics is they are very creative. :-)

All of the above have some real similarities but also some important differences. One thing they all have in common is they are used on a daily basis by addicts and alcoholics to avoid accountability and continue to drink or use or return to drinking or using.

How have you used any of these? Leave a comment and let us know.



Author's Bio: 

Tim has a masters degree in Mental Health Counseling and is a Certified Alcohol and Drug Counselor. He has 20 years of experience as a therapist working with mental health, addictions, and co-occurring disorders.

Tim states, "I am very passionate about living a balanced, healthy life in recovery since I know the benefits in my life and struggles with additive behaviors."