It can be very hard watching someone you love grapple with alcohol abuse. The person you used to know isn’t the same. They’re withdrawn and defensive. They may even be abusive if you bring up their drinking. You’re not going to give up on them, though, so you want to know how to help an alcoholic get the treatment they need.
Avoid Enabling Behaviors
Before finding out what to do, you have to know what not to do. Enabling behaviors, while they may be done out of love, can contribute to the problem.
Any of the following actions can enable drug and alcohol abusers:
- Buying drinks for them or drinking with them
- Taking over their responsibilities and obligations
- Making excuses for them
- Taking the blame for their drinking
It can be hard to avoid these behaviors, but remember that a person can’t get help for a problem if they don’t acknowledge it.
How to Help an Alcoholic
Not everyone will be ready to get help for substance abuse or addiction when they need it. Sometimes, you have to step back and be as supportive as you can without feeding into the problem. That’s part of how to help an alcoholic.
Let them know you love them and care about them. Encourage them to seek treatment, but be prepared for defensiveness and denial.
It may take some time before they’re ready to enter rehab. In the meantime, let them take responsibility for their actions, even if it hurts you to do so. Don’t clean up their drinking-related messes or cover for them if they miss work due to a hangover.
Knowing how to help an alcoholic seek treatment also involves taking care of yourself. You can’t get lost in the damaging effects of their drinking. You may find attending Al-Anon meetings helpful, as well as learning as much as you can about addiction. Once you realize that alcoholics have no control over their drinking, you may be able to separate the person you love from the disease.
When your loved one is ready to get the help they truly need, be there to support and motivate their efforts.
An Outpatient Rehab Just for You
The Hills Outpatient Treatment Center in Los Angeles provides clients the opportunity to receive life-changing substance abuse treatment while returning to familiar surroundings each day. Our skilled team of professionals helps men and women improve their lives by teaching them vital coping and stress-relieving skills that promote lasting recovery.
Our treatment programs include:
- Alcohol addiction treatment
- Drug addiction treatment
- Outpatient rehab Los Angeles
- Family therapy
- Relapse prevention
Once you know how to help an alcoholic, it’s time to take the first step. The Hills Outpatient Center can equip you with the tools and skills you need to help your loved one achieve sobriety. Contact us today at 866-777-0427 for more information.