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The Daily Dish Health

Here’s How to Be Supportive When a Friend Is Struggling With Addiction

Demi Lovato is still in rehab and her ex Wilmer Valderrama has seeemingly put his life on hold to be a constant presence for her.

By Marianne Garvey

Wilmer Valderrama — who dated Demi Lovato for six years — was a constant presence at the hospital when she was first admitted on July 24 — and sources told People "he saw her through so many ups and downs and was her rock through some of her darkest moments. To see her back in such a sad and vulnerable place is heartbreaking for him ... Demi always hoped they would end up back together in the future. He’s the love of her life and vice versa."

Now that she's at a different rehab facility and he's flown to check on her "several times," with sources telling TMZ  that they've "seen Demi and Wilmer at a local Starbucks several times, and it appeared to people in the shop they were boyfriend/girlfriend." 

Meanwhile, Luann de Lesseps credits her second stint in rehab to fellow The Real Housewives of New York City cast member Bethenny Frankel and her support.  

The Skinnygirl founder had revealed on the reunion episode (part two) that it was the very weekend before filming the reunion special that she staged a sort of intervention for Luann, along with some friends and family. She also put her in touch with top family lawyers who could sort out her money problems after she was sued by her children.

In Hollywood, Ben Affleck is seeking treatment for alcohol addiction, and his lifelong friend Matt Damon continues to be a big part of his support system," reports People

A source says the actor “has and will always be there for Ben," and that he has been there for his pal during this latest stint in rehab.

“They have been friends for years,” the insider says. "Let’s remember that they each have their own families and careers to deal with.”

As we all know these problems happen to loved ones in real life, too. How can you help if a loved one is in rehab or has just recently been released? It can be hard to know what to say or do. 

Lauren Eavarone, who offers relationship counseling in New York City, says supporting your friend may change the dynamics of the relationship — and that it's not a bad thing. 

Become a support system for this person.

“Transitioning from a friendship to one that also acts as a support system may mean redefining the friendship. If someone you care about struggles with alcohol and/or substance abuse, a way to support their sobriety is to help them refrain from potential triggers," she says, adding, "Activities you once enjoyed together, including going to a bar or certain social gathering, may no longer be conducive to the well-being of your friend's recovery."

Don't make it all about their addiction.

"Engage in activities that provide a sense of meaning and focuses on them as a person, not simply the illness. Although your friend may not reach out in attempt to connect or ask for help, it is beneficial to be available to them," she says. "By maintaining the social relationship, you act as a vital support system that provides encouragement to achieve lasting recovery through care and empathy."

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