What to Do When You Suspect Your Loved One Is Struggling with Addiction | Guest Writer Bethany Hatton


Addiction is a word thrown around a lot these days. People will say how “addicting” their new favorite Netflix series is, or how they are a “chocoholic.” For those whose loved ones have struggled with drugs and alcohol, addiction is a very serious matter. When someone you love battles an addiction, it’s almost like they’ve become a different person, and the damage done to families can be devastating. The best way to beat addiction is to recognize the signs and get help as soon as possible. Here are a few steps you can take if you believe that your loved one might be an addict.

Recognizing Signs of Addiction

The line that separates addiction from casual usage is perilously thin. Substances that are more or less socially acceptable, such as alcohol, can be seemingly harmless at first. By the time you realize that a loved one has substance abuse issues, it’s already a major problem. But how do you catch addiction before the situation becomes dire?

There are a few signs that you can look for, and if you spot a few of these occurring simultaneously, it often points to a loved one having an unhealthy dependence on a substance. Drugs that are highly illegal such as heroine or methamphetamines are usually taken in secret. Signs that a loved one may be using an illegal drug might include withdrawal, repeatedly poor judgement, or financial problems. If a loved one openly uses a substance such as alcohol, you also may notice that they have an increasing tolerance and are therefore drinking more frequently.

Staging an Intervention

Once you are sure that there is a problem, you need to take some sort of action. If you catch addiction fairly early, you can try holding an intervention on your own. However, when the addiction has gotten out of hand, you may have to take more immediate action—especially when the life of your loved one is at risk.

There are many ways to go about staging an intervention. Many families choose to do it together. It can be difficult to express concern with a loved one on your own, and having more people there in the room can help you discuss the underlying problem and work more efficiently toward a solution. It’s hard to say how a loved one will receive an intervention. There may be denial, hurtful words, and heated moments. But it’s important to keep a safe and open environment for everyone to keep the intervention focused on love, not accusations.

Seeking Treatment

Usually, it’s not enough to simply address that addiction is a problem. The next step usually comes in the form of treatment, be it a traditional 12-step program like Alcoholics Anonymous or another religious-based recovery program. There is no one correct way to go about addiction treatments. Sometimes people attend retreat-style rehab clinics, and other times individuals will commit themselves to holistic therapy to address the underlying issues of addiction. How you proceed depends entirely on the needs of your loved one, in order to give them the best chance of recovery.

The Healing Process

Once a loved one begins treatment for their addiction, the damage does not immediately go away. Oftentimes, addiction leaves a trail of wreckage in its wake, and the friends and family of the loved one are left picking up the pieces. Once an intervention occurs and treatment is underway, the healing process begins. Damaged relationships will need to be mended, and trust will have to be reestablished over time. In these instances, it takes effort on both sides to really allow the healing process to take hold.

It takes courage to recognize and then confront addiction. One of the hardest things to do in life is watch someone close to your heart fall into addiction’s treacherous trap. While addiction can damage relationships, there’s always a way for love to enter back into your life and mend the bridges between loved ones.

Bethany Hatton, a retired librarian with 32 years of experience, created PreventAddiction.info after her oldest grandson became addicted to opioids. Using the research skills she honed during her work as a librarian, she dedicated herself to searching the internet to find the most reputable, reliable information to share on her site. Though she discovered there is no guaranteed way to prevent addiction; she was able to find many helpful resources that can keep the public up to date on the latest prevention, addiction, and recovery information.

Yoga Class? I thought you said pour a glass! | Guest Writer/Business Woman Margaret Anderson

We all know that yoga and wine are great stress relievers. Wine and Yoga might sound like a strange pairing, but it’s more common than you might think. Perth has been experiencing Sunset Rooftop VinoVinyasa™ classes since Sept 2017 and loving it! What could be more fun than this? A great new class designed to incorporate yoga, fitness, fun + wine all in one night! Flow, breathe, relax and sip your way through a yoga class accessible for all levels of fitness with upbeat music and a friendly environment suitable for first-timers or experienced yogis. This concept truly brings it all together on the mat.

The word “Yogi” conjures many thoughts for people. My interpretation is to live a healthy, balanced life that enables me to connect positively to my own life and the life of my participants, indulging in life’s pleasures occasionally.

YOGA is such a buzzword or thing right now right? We see social media going crazy depicting yoga poses that the average person reels at and actively wants to avoid. We see Goat Yoga classes springing up, Dog / Puppy Yoga, Cat / Kitten Yoga (yes I teach this one too for the love of felines and CatHavenWA). So why not Wine Yoga or as I have registered my business “VinoVinyasa™”? A class that’s achievable for everyone complete with a little end reward!

On first consideration, drinking and yoga may seem rather incompatible and may seem like an unlikely blend, however there is a parallel / connection between the benefits of being on the mat and an occasional wine. You may have reservations about combining the two but you’ll soon come to try, taste and trust that: these two contrasting activities can actually come together to create a truly relaxing and rejuvenating experience.

Appreciation of the finer things in life can be a beautiful balance of many elements. Time on the yoga mat whether as a participant or as an instructor doesn’t mean you cannot indulge in life’s pleasures…yes like drinking wine. Even the yoga guru Deepak Chopra has published an article on the benefits of an occasional wine! Yoga has many benefits and when practised over time mindfully will bring you to a wonderful state of greater awareness and bliss.  If consumed moderately Wine may provide some health benefits but when consumed mindfully via meditation it provides a blissful state of appreciation and awareness.

The Wine mediation becomes a sensual appreciation of all the process that lovingly brought the fruit of the vine to that particular moment. From the planting of the vines to the bottled result, from the glass in your hand to the appreciation of our sense of sight, smell and taste. From the colour and viscosity, to the aroma, to finally the sensation on our tongues and finally the sensation of allowing the first sip to enter our body. Allowing full appreciation of each sip to mindfully and totally immerse in the meditation and sensations that arise.

In today’s society there is huge need for more people to exercise. Vino Vinyasa is a creative way to include some work / life / wellness / balance to the mix. Pairing yoga and wine is a great way to “wine down” as we say at VinoVinyasa after a long week at work, time with the kids, running your own business or just living life. It’s a way to spend time with friends, and enjoy a great yoga class and a relaxing meditative wine appreciation savasana at the end.

Renewing yourself, living consciously and having fun are important. Focusing on what makes you feel good in an environment where you can combine some of life’s little indulgences whatever the activity can only be a positive step towards allowing your self to stop and smell the grapes for a while! So practice yoga with fun and appreciate your wine with respect and in moderation. Whatever brings them to the mat I say; something is always better than nothing. Life is to be lived, Yoga is to be practised and Wine it to be appreciated.

So….Wine Yoga? Wine Not? It’s all about balance!

See you on the mat.


Marg Anderson

Marg Anderson is a Level 3 Certified Personal Trainer, Group Fitness and 200hr RYT Yoga Instructor and owner of Regenerate Personal Training, Mandodesigns Jewellery, Impact Interior Designs and VinoVinyasa™. Marg is also a recipient of both Western Australian and Australian Fitness Industry awards in 2005 + 2006, culminating in an Australian lifetime achievement award in 2014. Also qualified as an Interior Designer and Jewellery designer, Marg combines her long time passion for the fitness (35 years) with reading, swimming, enjoying time with her 4 feline fur babes and husband while living the Freo lifestyle.

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Exercise, Motherhood & Me | Guest Writer Erin Puckett

My name is Erin Puckett and I am an Exercise Scientist and a Mother. Fitness has always been a part of my life in some form or another. We were active children playing hockey, basketball, cricket, swimming, you name it we probably tried it. So when it came to choosing a university degree, Sport Science seemed the perfect fit.

I have been working in the health and fitness industry now for over 12 years. I have trained women through every stage of pregnancy including myself and I can unequivocally say, every woman’s experience with pregnancy and exercise is truly unique, including mine. When I fell pregnant I was exercising 5 days a week, teaching RPM classes and weight training as I had been doing for several years. I was a healthy weight with no serious health concerns and injury free. My beautiful daughter turns 3 in June and I am only now managing to maintain a regular exercise routine…. and I work in a gym!

So why has it taken so long? A number of reasons both physical and mental. My body wasn’t the same post pregnancy and my energy levels were nowhere near what they used to be. Lack of sleep will do that to you! Additionally, I suffered from pubic symphysis (early separation of the hip bones) thanks to hyper mobility and was cautious about injury.  But mostly, my procrastination was a mental battle. Whilst I well and truly know the benefits of exercise and the positive effects it can have on mental health, I couldn’t seem to match that knowledge up with my new mum brain.

Trust me I tried. Daily walks with new bub were easy but they werent enough and they definitely weren’t helping shake the baby weight. I returned to the gym aiming for sessions 3 times a week. Seems reasonable right? But I would get there and feel guilty for not being at home being a mum. My workouts were ineffective because I was distracted and eventually, I just stopped bothering.  And I am not the only one. With all the Mums I have had the amazing pleasure of training over the years, there are a few commonalities. So here are a few key things I have learned through experience that will hopefully help other Mums reading with their journey to health and happiness.

1. Exercise is different for everyone and so is pregnancy. So always seek the advice of your doctor regarding what type and intensity of exercise is best for you. Supervised training sessions with an exercise professional are highly recommended for specific conditions such as gestational diabetes etc. This allows you to continue exercising while controlling those factors.

2. Mindset is everything. As a new mum, you tend to skip out taking care of yourself. So make sure you make yourself a priority. You need to be happy and healthy to take care of that bundle of joy, so schedule some me time and get those endorphins flowing. Make a plan for exercise and stick to it. Your body and your baby will thank you for it. And ditch the guilt. You are being the best mother you can be by taking care of yourself so you can take care of your family.

3. Keep it simple. I have seen women give birth and return to Pump class with a 6 pack 8 weeks later. I have also seen women gain 20kgs in 9 months baking their babies. Don’t expect the same results as someone else. They’re not you. Simplicity wins when it comes to healthy choices especially when kids are involved. Move More, Eat Fresh. Aim to get 30 minutes of moderate to high intensity exercise 3 times per week. Stack your diet with fresh produce, lean meats and whole grains. The less processing the better.

4. Rest, relax and recover. Your body needs it. That doesn’t mean you absolutely HAVE to get 8 hours sleep a night (which would be impressive to pull off with a kid in the house anyway!). It means downtime. A slow down where you can let your muscles recover and your brain reboot. A warm bath and a good book are my go to.

5. Love yourself the way that kid loves you. Unconditionally. And they always will. So take care of yourself body, mind and soul so they know how to do it too.

It wont happen overnight. It has taken me 12 years of exercise experience and 3 years as a mum to reach where I am. I’m still a work in progress, like the rest of us.  So take your time and enjoy the ride.

Erin Puckett is a qualified Exercise Scientist with over 12 years experience in the health and fitness industry. She specializes in functional training and injury rehabilitation from adolescents to elite level athletes and everyone in between. You can reach Erin at Facebook or Instagram to arrange a free consultation.