The stigma against addiction make families secretive.

Some addicts use this.

Let's rephrase that: some people in the grip of addiction use shame to continue with the addiction.

By in the grip of addiction, I mean that the drug has taken over. That is how I think of addiction, that the drug has crashed all boundaries and the person puts the drug first. The drug is in control. The drugged addicted person is lying: to you, to me and to themselves most of all.

How does the drugged addicted person use this?

Tell a story. About someone else, don't tell anyone I told you, but I have to talk to someone. My mother won't help me. She gives money to my brother, he's her favorite, she helps him all the time. He won't visit. I am sick and he won't visit! I love him so much and he.... sniff... well, could I possibly borrow $3000.00 for just a month? My paycheck is on the 15th, right after that I can pay you....

Get the money.

Make sure your cell phone messages are full. Don't answer texts. Don't answer the door. Avoid, avoid, avoid.... then call, say, on the 20th... "I am so sorry! The bank made an error, it's not until the 30th, I couldn't believe it, I told them I HAVE to pay you, I've been terrified to call, I was so afraid I'd lose you as a friend... sniff.... can we meet on the 31st? Oh, that's Sunday, and work is so busy, the Saturday after that, oh, you are so kind, not like my mother and brother...."

When you can no longer avoid meeting, do it at your house. Have at least 3-4 friends present, crutches, an ace wrap on your ankle and your ankle on a pillow. The lender arrives. Have a fight brewing with your spouse/teen/ex-uncle/mother-out-law or neighbor. The lender will ask about a check or "Do you have it?" Look appalled, like you have no idea what they are talking about. If they lose their temper, great. Act completely shocked and innocent. Get yelled at. Cry. Be very very publicly victimized. If they keep their temper, quickly set your spouse/teen/ex-uncle/mother-out-law or neighbor to lose it and start yelling at you. Cry.

Your lender will leave.

Tell a few of the people present, separatly, not to tell anyone. In confidence. You cannot believe you were so wrong about someone. The (lender's) temper! What they are saying about you! You trusted them and you love them. You are such a private person and that they would come and yell at you in front of all those people! You are so ashamed that the person you are telling witnessed this. Put that person on your "don't borrow from" for at least a month.

Lather. Rinse. Repeat.

The person that has loaned the money will be ashamed. They will be incredulous. They will not want to believe that the addict scammer has done this to them. They will doubt themselves, especially if they were the one to lose their temper and yell. They may be so ashamed that they will cut contact with the addict. The addict keeps the money! If they don't cut contact, they may realize that other people think the LENDER is the villain. The other friends/acquaintances/family have been secretly told that they behave badly. Towards the addict scammer. People will whisper, witnesses, draw away from the lender, draw towards the public victim scammer.... and those are the next lenders, all set up, all drawn close as confidants, appalled at how the charming scammer has been treated. Isn't it terrible that some people are just emotionally out of control and crazy?

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