Destination Hope Blog » Coping with Alcohol Abuse In a Loved One

Coping with Alcohol Abuse In a Loved One

Alcohol abuse can be difficult for not only the individual suffering from the addiction, but also for the family.  It can be very painful and disturbing to watch someone you love suffer from alcohol abuse, especially if you see the pattern of behavior before they do.

What can family members do? What is the best way for them to address the alcohol abuse?  Let’s look at some ways family members can cope with alcohol abuse in a loved one.

Coping With Alcohol Abuse In Your Family

The early stages of alcoholism or alcohol abuse in your loved one may not even be recognizable.  You may have a feeling that your loved one is drinking too much, but you may not see negative consequences at first.  It may seem like your loved one is just going through a rough time.

Remember that problems with alcohol do not appear overnight.  Like many other chronic health problems, the signs and symptoms make take a while to appear. However, soon enough you’ll probably start to notice that your loved one is putting drinking before everything else.

You may notice that your loved one is starting to behave in different ways and starting to ignore responsibilities at work or to the family.  These are signs that your loved one is suffering from an alcohol problem.  This is probably the point at which you are wondering what to do.

Coping with a loved one with alcohol abuse may put you and your family in a position that you don’t want to be in.  It may be hard, but try to recognize if you are acting in a way that enables your loved one’s behavior.  For example, are you making excuses for his or her drinking? Are you paying for certain aspects of your loved ones life because they have lost their job due to drinking.

It can be very difficult to realize that your “help” is actually enabling this behavior, especially when you see your loved one suffering.  Here are some things you can do to help your loved one and your family:

  1. Discuss your concerns.  You don’t have to be confrontational, in fact that approach may result in negative feelings.  Instead, discuss your concerns about your loved ones alcohol abuse in a non-judgmental way.  Ask questions and express your concern from a place of love.  Remind your loved on that no matter what you love them and you want them to get help.
  2. Contact a professional.  Sitting down with an alcohol abuse counselor can help you identify behavior that enable your loved one’s alcohol problem.  A counselor can also guide you to the right treatment options.
  3. Seek support.  Find support from others who have dealt with alcohol abuse in their families. Remember that your loved one isn’t the only one whose life is being impacted.  Having a safe place to discuss your feelings, emotions and situation can help you cope with the behavior.

If you or someone you love is suffering from the effects of alcohol abuse, substance addiction or any other type of addiction, please call us today.  Our addiction treatment counselors can help you deal with physical, emotional and psychological consequences of drug and alcohol abuse.

A substance abuse treatment program is effective, safe and has helped many men reclaim their lives. Destination Hope is a full service drug, alcohol and dual diagnosis treatment facility in Florida for men suffering from substance abuse and mental health issues.