10 Signs You’re in Denial About Addiction

Are you addicted to drugs and alcohol? While family and friends may see things differently, you think everything is great and your substance abuse is controlled. There may be times when you acknowledge that you may use “a little too much”, rationalize your use, or blame others or situations for your substance use. If you find yourself doing this regularly, it’s a good sign that you are in denial about addiction.

This article focuses on denial in addiction. We will focus on the 10 common signs that you’re in denial about your addiction, and you will learn how to help a loved one with addiction. Do you or a loved one need help overcoming your substance abuse issues? The experienced team of professionals at Sequoia Recovery Centers can help you address the roots of your addiction and will put together a personalized program to help you find lasting sobriety. 

Our Washington medical detox center and compassionate support team will help your loved one and family become empowered on the road to recovery. Call Sequoia Recovery Centers today and conquer addiction once and for all.

Why is Denial So Common in Addicts?

If you are an addict or if a family member is addicted to substances, you or your family members may ask the same questions:

  • Do you realize you are an addict and need help?
  • Why can’t you see that your behaviors are ruining our family?
  • Why don’t you get help?

Those questions are valid, and when they are asked the expected response should be filled with honesty, regret, and even guilt. However, the addict doesn’t see anything wrong with what they are doing. They are the last person to see that their behavior is destroying their life and those around them.

Why is that?

In simple terms, drug use changes brain chemistry and functioning. Because of these changes, addicts think differently and have differing perceptions of what is occurring in their daily lives. Secondly, for addicts who may feel deep inside their behavior is not normal to use denial as a coping mechanism so they can feel comfortable with their behavior.

10 Signs You’re in Denial About Addiction

As an addict, you or your loved one don’t realize that you operate under heavy denial. In many respects, denial diverts attention away from the real issue. However, there are telltale signs that you or someone you love are in denial regarding their addiction:


Addicts that exhibit denial avoid or have an extreme reluctance to face issues head-on.

Using Other People’s Behaviors As Evidence That You Don’t Have a Problem

Addicts are quick to point out the behaviors of others who are addicted to substances as a justification to show their behaviors are “not as bad”.

Promises To Get Better

If you or a loved one says things such as “I’ll get it under control soon” or “I’m working on cutting back.”, you are operating under denial. When you or a loved one say these things, it is to deflect or get people off your back.

Flat Out Denial There is Even a Problem

If you or a loved one outright deny behaviors that others have seen you engage in, you are attempting to cover up the deeper issue of addiction.


If you or a loved one use excuses for your drinking or drug use, you are denying your problem. A couple of the most common excuses used by addicts include the following:

  • I only use on the weekends
  • It is a special occasion
  • I’m stressed and need to blow off some steam

Blaming Others

Addicts in denial will blame others for their behaviors. This could be a boss who is too strict at work or a parent who has a history of substance abuse.

Ignoring Concerns

When family and friends show growing concern regarding your or a loved one’s substance abuse, there is an issue.

Short-Lived Sobriety

When you or a loved one are in denial of your addiction often have short-lived periods of sobriety. When these periods occur, you will often say you can control their use whenever you want.


When family members or friends confront you about your substance use, you play one person off of the other in order to stir up drama and shift the focus away from your loved ones or your substance abuse issues.

“It’s My Life”

Perhaps the biggest sign of denial is the simple declaration that you will do whatever you please because it’s your life and you will do want you want.

Sequoia Recovery Centers Will Help You Break the Cycle of Addiction

Have you finally seen the light regarding your substance abuse? Do you want to know how to help someone in denial about addiction? As a premier drug and alcohol rehab in Spokane, Sequoia Recovery Centers provide addicts and those they love the tools, support, and resources needed to overcome addiction. Our evidence-based treatment programs and expert staff support ensure that each client receives the personalized care they need to make recovery a reality. Call us toll-free right now and make the change for the better.

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