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Addiction and the Professional


Addiction, especially to drugs or alcohol, is a disease that transcends all race, ethnic, social, educational and economic barriers. A respected professional can become the victim of addiction just as easily as any other person on the street. Many times friends, family and co-workers are unsure how to address addiction with a professional and help is needed to intervene.

What Does Addiction Look Like in a Professional?

The problem with addressing addiction in successful professionals is that it does not always look like people’s perception of addiction. A doctor, lawyer, or business owner can appear extremely successful and functional and still have an addiction. The perception that an addict has to “hit bottom” and lose everything does not match the professional person who seems to still function at a very high level.

It can be hard to understand why someone who is so driven in many aspects of their life could become an addict. However, the same attributes that propel them to success can also lead to addiction. High-level professionals tend to take risks and enjoy the thrill of living on the edge. They also are often in high-stress jobs and seek ways to relieve that stress. Using drugs or alcohol can be part of their high-risk behavior and a way to unwind but can grow out of control.

Even though a professional with an addiction may still be able to function within certain aspects of their life, it does not mean it is not spinning out of control. They may be able to focus at their job, but their addiction impacts their interactions and relationships with friends and family. Eventually, addiction will spill into every aspect of their lives, but due to their ability to compartmentalize, it can be harder to define and recognize.

Getting a Professional Help for Addiction

Those with professional careers can be extremely resistant to admitting the need for help. The strong personality of someone who performs at a high level in their career can be difficult to persuade. They also are concerned with how admitting addiction will impact their career and reputation. It can require the help of a seasoned addiction professional and legal counsel to help mitigate the damage to the professional’s career and public life.

At Tison Law Group, we have helped many professionals over the years who have struggled with addiction to drugs or alcohol. We offer help for those who want to seek addiction intervention for a loved one and legal representation for those struggling with the legal consequences caused by their addiction. Contact our office in Tampa Bay to learn more about our addiction intervention service.

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