How to Help an Alcoholic

If you recognize that someone close to you has more than just a problem with drinking but is, in fact, an alcoholic, then you'd better learn how to help an alcoholic quickly. You can begin by talking to the individual about their drinking behavior and ask them to do something to change it. You can make many suggestions that can help them. If this doesn't work, the person may need treatment.

How to Help an Alcoholic

Helping an alcoholic can be difficult. They may be so entrenched in their problem that they won't listen to what you have to say. You should never give up on an alcoholic and should do what you can to help them overcome their disease. Hope the following tips can be helpful.

1.   Be Honest with the Alcoholic

Make sure the alcoholic knows what you are thinking. Do not deny that the problem exists and tell the person that you are worried about how much they are drinking. Try to be as supportive as you can.

2.   Get Others to Help

Try to see if other family members can help you confront the alcoholic. Do an intervention with others who also believe that the alcoholic needs help and who are prepared to suspend judgment and attempt to truly help the alcoholic. If you all know how to help an alcoholic, you can work together, along with a professional, to get them to stop drinking.

3.   Rehearse What You Are Going to Say

Practice exactly what you want to say to the alcoholic. You can practice in front of a mirror and try to think of positive and constructive things to say to the alcoholic. You will not help an alcoholic if you don't know exactly what you are going to say.

4.   Choose the Right Time and Place

Make sure that you find a time where the alcoholic recognizes you are about to have a serious conversation. Do not talk to them if they are preoccupied or otherwise upset. Make sure you talk to the person while they are sober.

5.   Get Them to Commit to Change

This means not allowing yourself to be swayed by promises the alcoholic might make. Get them to agree to go into treatment and ask for something concrete out of them. Follow up to make sure they will do what they have committed to do. If they are really stubborn, try to have an intervention with more people involved.

6.   Stay on Course

Don't just have a talk with them and then forget about them. Know that you can learn how to help an alcoholic by going to meetings with them regularly and help them attend treatment sessions. Help them out with whatever you can do to make it easier as they heal.

7.   Remain Informed

Learn all you can about alcoholism from books or from counselors. The more you know, the better you can help the alcoholic. Try to get in contact with someone at Al-Anon, Alcoholics Anonymous, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), and the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism.

8.   Don't Lend Money to an Alcoholic

Unless it is a life threatening situation, any money you give to them will only go to buying more alcohol or getting them out of a jam. Alcoholics can be sneaky in the ways they try to get money from you that only enables their disease process.

9.   Take the Alcoholic to AA Meetings

The alcoholic may not have the strength or courage to get to AA meetings on their own. The best way to do this is to take them to meetings and make sure they stay there. AA meetings can be the best thing for the alcoholic and can help them remain sober after appropriate treatment.

10.   Stay off the Soapbox

This means that you can't afford to be on too high a moral ground when dealing with an alcoholic. They don't need preaching to and they don't need to hear about their problem from a person who believes themselves as a perfect person. Stay on their level as you talk to them as they will listen to you with a softer ear.

11.   Try to Have a "Twelfth Step Call"

This is an intervention that takes place involving sober members who were once alcoholics. They will meet with the alcoholic and may share their issues with them in an attempt to help them understand that they, too, can get sober. Talk to a local AA meeting place near you to arrange this type of intervention.

12.   Ask for Help form Interventionist

You may not be able to handle the alcoholic yourself and may need to seek the advice of an interventionist. He or she can guide you through the intervention process so that you can help the alcoholic get into treatment. The interventionist will help teach you how to help an alcoholic and will help you learn what to say that will encourage the alcoholic to seek help.

13.   Help Yourself

Being around an alcoholic can be stressful. You may need to get help for yourself, such as attending Al-Anon, which is a group program that is supposed to help those who are close to and affected by the alcoholic.

14.   Know You Cannot Save the Alcoholic

Alcoholism is an entrenched disease that is not easy to treat. Once you have tried all possible ways to help an alcoholic, but he or she just can't get rids of it, you should  know the crucial part must stem from themselves, instead of others. 

15.   Don't Blame Yourself

The problems of the alcoholic have nothing to do with you. Alcoholism is a disease process that has multiple factors associated with it. If you just can help them out of drinking, you don’t need to feel responsible for the alcoholic's situation.

Here are some scientifically proven tips about helping an alcoholic you can also try:

 
 
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