How to Help My Friend Who is an Alcoholic?

Helping your friend who is struggling with alcohol use disorder is not easy. It is even more daunting if you don’t know how you can help them overcome the addiction. Alcoholism is a severe disorder that causes both psychological and physical side effects. These effects can ruin careers, social relationships, and health.

Helping your friend to overcome alcoholism early on can prevent these side effects. Even though it is advisable to let your friend begin their journey to recovery on their own, you have to step in sometimes.

Here is how you can help your friend who is struggling with alcohol addiction.

Identify the Alcoholism Stage

One of the steps you ought to take is to determine whether your loved one is struggling with alcohol addiction. Although most people assume that drinking too much is a sign of alcoholism, the truth is that it goes beyond that. As such, you should try to identify the stage of alcoholism. Knowing the signs of each stage will enable you to make the right decision to help your friend before the situation gets out of hand.

Usually, alcoholism begins with binge drinking. During this stage, your friend might start experimenting with large amounts of different drinks. The chances are that your friend will start drinking more than they usually do after this stage. If the drinking problem continues, your friend will start experiencing the adverse effects of alcoholism before becoming addicted.

Think About Your Next Course of Action

Now that you know the different stages of alcoholism, it is the right time to sit down and think about what you will do or say to your loved one. Approaching your friend who is an alcoholic can be tricky, and it is best to think about the conversation beforehand.

Strive to let them know that you care and want the best for them. You can do that by using positive and supportive statements. Try to use “I” statements as much as possible during the conversation. This reduces accusations and lets your friend know about your concerns. For instance, you can say – I care about you so much, and I am concerned about how much you have been drinking recently. I think it might harm your health and career. This is much better instead of saying you are an alcohol addict and you must get help immediately.

Remember that your friend might not take things positively at first.

Timing is Key

Before approaching your friend, it is vital to note that timing is Key. For instance, you should not have this conversation when your friend is going through a rough patch. Therefore, make sure to have the conversation when you feel that your friend is at a good place mentally and physically.

Moreover, it is essential to pick the right place for the conversation. Having the conversation in a quiet and private place will reduce interruption and enhance attention.

Encourage Your Friend to Talk About the Problem

When talking with your friend, it is essential to encourage them to talk about the problem honestly. Start by finding out what your friend thinks about the situation. Also, try to find out the cause of the alcoholism. Understanding the circumstances and factors behind the drinking problem can help you come up with viable solutions.

The common cause of alcoholism include:

  • Mental health disorders.
  • Family history.
  • Stress.
  • Peer pressure.
  • Drinking to cope.
  • Trauma.
  • Underage drinking.

If your friend identifies the possible cause of the drinking problem, it is best to let them know that you are ready to help them overcome the problem. Remember to give your friend ample time and space to make a decision.

Talk About Different Treatment Options

If your friend wants to seek help, you can help them pick the right treatment option. Common treatment options for alcohol addiction include medical procedures, therapy, medications, lfestyle drug, and residential treatment facility.

Discuss each option to help your friend make the right decision. Remember to consider the seriousness of the drinking problem. You can encourage your friend to choose residential treatment programs if the drinking problem is severe. Rehab centers offer 24/7 support, activity therapy, individual and group therapy, and round-the-clock monitoring.

Wrapping Up

Helping a friend who is struggling with alcoholism is never easy. Luckily, you can help your friend by talking with them and encouraging them to seek professional help. Encouraging them to join the best alcohol treatment program will help them overcome alcohol dependence and addiction disorders. Call us at 833-820-2922.