Counseling and Resource Center

When Someone You Know...

...Abuses Drugs (including Alcohol)

What is Substance Abuse?

Signs of Substance Abuse

Facts about Alcohol

Facts about Other Drug Use

Drug use and abuse provide the users with a temporary illusion that they can escape from or cope with life's realities. People with alcohol and other drug problems often feel that they hurt only themselves, but they are also tremendously hurting their family, friends, coworkers, employers and others.

Substance abuse and addiction is treatable. Treatment is typically most successful when the abuser him/herself realizes there is a problem and really wants help.

Myths and Facts

Myth: The substance abuse problems of others don't affect me.
Fact: Every man, woman, and child in America pays nearly $1,000 annually to cover the expense of unnecessary health care, extra law enforcement, auto accidents, crime, and lost productivity resulting from substance abuse.

Myth: Women and men of generally the same weight should be able to drink the same amount of alcohol before getting drunk.
Fact: Alcohol is absorbed more rapidly by women, regardless of weight, due to a stomach enzyme that is more active in men and that makes it easier for men to metabolize (process and eliminate) the alcohol.

Myth: "Natural" drugs like Marijuana aren't addictive.
Fact: Regular use of any drug can build up tolerance and lead to a need for more of the drug to get high. Users can become mentally and/or physically dependent and addicted.

Myth: Ecstasy (MDMA) acts as an aphrodisiac.
Fact: "Club drugs" like ecstasy can actually reduce sexual performance and can permanently damage the part of the brain that controls mood and emotions, contributing to depression and impotence.

What Can Help

The first steps in recovery are recognizing that there is a problem and admitting that help is necessary. Treatment might involve detoxification, medical and/or nutritional screening, and behavior modification.


Sobriety and Recovery Support:



Care Crisis Line
Snohomish County Care Crisis Line: 425.258.HELP (4357) or 1.800.584.3578
(24-hour telephone crisis counseling; interpreters available)
King County Crisis Line: 206.461.3222 or 1.800.244.5767