how to confront an alcoholic

This way, you will not find yourself without anything to say and have more chances of persuading your loved one to undergo treatment. Books on recovery from alcoholism can also help one find the right words to reach the alcohol user. Being an HFA affects every aspect of that individual’s life—but they are often unable to see this truth until they get sober. In terms of family life and friends, there is also the problem of “secondary” denial that loved ones may have about an HFA by not believing that they are “real” alcoholics. This powerful sense of denial also prevents the loved ones of HFAs from intervening. HFAs may provide the main source of income for a family and therefore the spouse or partner may not feel that they have the leverage to persuade the HFA to get help.

  • Don’t take the moral high ground and make him or her feel like a loser.
  • It may be helpful to talk to other friends or family members that share your concerns, and ask if they would like to participate in expressing their concerns.
  • Understanding alcoholism and what an alcohol use disorder is can help someone who is trying to approach a loved one about their alcohol consumption problem.
  • Boundaries differ from person to person and should be based on protecting yourself from unwanted consequences of someone else’s behavior, not on punishing the person for drinking.

We do not receive any compensation or commission for referrals to other treatment facilities. You nor your loved one are under any obligation to commit to an Ark Behavioral Health treatment eco sober house review program when calling our helpline. Support from loved ones is extremely important to a newly sober person. Although recovery can be difficult, it can also be inspiring and rewarding.

If you need help knowing how to confront an alcoholic parent, we’ve got answers.

Alcoholism results when a person is no longer capable of controlling their alcohol use or consumption. Despite the negative impacts alcohol has had on their life, they won’t stop drinking. However, there are ways you can help your parent seek treatment. If your parent recognizes that they have an alcohol problem and are ready to begin recovery, many treatment facilities and treatment programs are available. People tend to get angry or defensive when confronted about their drinking.

Consider bringing other family members to help in the conversation, as the larger the support network the more physical safety is assured and more concern and care for the alcoholic is shown. Being surrounded by those who care has the potential to motivate the alcoholic to seek help. A professional interventionist is able to help assist with phrasing, de-escalation, and intervention techniques (3).

People with alcoholism are often in denial about their condition, or they’re high-functioning, which is when they’re capable of abusing alcohol while seeming like they have their life together. But the longer they go without help, the more their condition will worsen. If you have a loved one with this condition and you don’t know how to start the conversation about addiction treatment, we’re sharing some tips on confronting an alcoholic that can help. Addiction Resource is an educational platform for sharing and disseminating information about addiction and substance abuse recovery centers.

Have an exit strategy ready, such as a nearby door, for if the conversation needs to be ended abruptly (4). To check your coverage, you can call your insurance provider, or call the treatment center you are considering for your family member. Additionally, some alcohol rehab providers, like American Addiction Centers (AAC) make it possible for you to check your insurance coverage online.

How common is alcoholism?

Try to spend some alone time with your parent to avoid interruptions or distractions. If these attempts repeatedly fail, it may be necessary to stage an intervention. Ignoring it could lead to fractured relationships and complicated family problems. When dealing with an alcoholic, self-care can also be setting boundaries and walking away when it’s the best choice for your wellbeing. You might think that bringing up a past event may motivate an alcoholic through guilt, but it will likely just lead them to drink more. Whether the alcoholic in your life is at a stage where things are getting worse, or starting to look better, no good will come from bringing up the past.

Self-care can vary from taking a steamy bath to going to bed earlier. Plus, mindfulness meditation has many benefits that can improve your mental and physical well-being. Practicing mindfulness meditation doesn’t have to take long, and can help you detach from the past, focus on the present, and help build a better future for the alcoholic in your life.

We start our alcoholic treatment program with a drug detox to help the alcoholic overcome psychological and physical dependence on the drug. During the confrontation itself, remember your plan and boundaries. Express your needs, feelings, and wants directly, without holding yourself responsible for the emotions of your spouse. They can react how they choose, and you are not responsible for those emotions.

Physical safety is a basic need and until all basic needs are met, other needs, such as sobriety, will remain unaddressed (6). A person who faces an alcohol use disorder will most likely deny there is anything wrong with them. He or she may say the habit only helps them to take the edge off, even though you know they’ve been drinking in excess. You won’t be able to get them to start working on themselves or even acknowledge the problem that easily.

Consider an intervention.

Al-Anon is a free, anonymous national support for the friends and loved ones of alcoholics and ACOA is a free, anonymous national support specifically for adult children of alcoholic parents. The book Co-Dependent No More by Melody Beattie is a resource for the loved ones of alcoholics that is highly recommended by many therapists. In addition, attending individual therapy or even family therapy with the HFA can be effective. It is best to find a therapist who specializes in treating addictions, and you can often do this search through your insurance company or by asking your physician. For those seeking addiction treatment for themselves or a loved one, the helpline is a private and convenient solution. Calls to any general helpline (non-facility specific 1-8XX numbers) for your visit will be answered by American Addiction Centers (AAC).

how to confront an alcoholic

And when an alcoholic says they will never drink again or never repeat a certain mistake, and then goes back on their word, don’t take it personally. The best way to cope with your stress and maintain a positive attitude is to stay focused on your goals and avoid situations that may trigger the urge to drink. They can give you tips and suggestions on dealing with an alcoholic husband and the challenges that can arise during the recovery process. The worst expectation you as a wife to an alcoholic husband may have is to expect a change overnight.

Observable Alcoholism Signs

Often alcoholics will be more inclined to make a change if they realize the effect on those who care about them. Speak with them when they’re sober

When under the influence of alcohol, a person will have difficulty thinking straight and clear. You can see why talking with them about their problem at such times could be a bad idea. Not only will the person disregard your motivations, he or she won’t be able to differentiate between what’s good and bad for them. An alcoholic woman or man is unable to control their emotions and thought when they are drunk. In many cases, alcoholics struggle with more than an alcohol use disorder.

However, a crisis is usually the time when you should do nothing. When someone reaches a crisis point, sometimes that’s when they finally admit they have a problem and begin to reach out for help. However, there are certain things you can do that may help relieve the pressure, and in some cases, also better help your loved one start their path to recovery. Addiction is a complex issue that can affect individuals from all walks of life, regardless of their environment or background…. Marixie Ann Manarang-Obsioma is a licensed Medical Technologist (Medical Laboratory Science) and an undergraduate of Doctor of Medicine (MD). She took her Bachelor’s Degree in Medical Technology at Angeles University Foundation and graduated with flying colors.

One inconsiderate comment and the person can retreat back to their world of darkness. Be careful not to close the channel of communication forever and think before you speak. That said, there is the possibility that they will not be receptive to a conversation about their addiction. However, that does not mean that it was a waste of time, or that they won’t ever get sober. Knowing what alcohol withdrawal looks like could potentially save your friend’s life. Sarah Allen Benton, M.S., LMHC., LPC, is a licensed mental health counselor and author of Understanding the High-Functioning Alcoholic.

Getting professional help for an alcohol addiction

Our representatives work solely for AAC and will discuss whether an AAC facility may be an option for you. Our helpline is offered at no cost to you and with no obligation to enter into treatment. Neither nor AAC receives any commission or other fee that is dependent upon which treatment provider a visitor may ultimately choose. Some people may use the term “alcoholism” or “alcoholic” to describe someone addicted to alcohol, but they are really referencing an alcohol use disorder, the proper term for alcohol addiction. A person who has an alcohol use disorder has a legitimate medical condition that makes it difficult for them to stop drinking. So, remember to seek your social support during this taxing time.

Our Recovery Advocates are ready to answer your questions about addiction treatment and help you start your recovery. Blaming the person for their problems will likely cause them to shut down and refuse to listen to you. Avoid making accusations like, “You’re so irresponsible” or “All you care about is drinking! ” You may be frustrated, but accusations aren’t likely to make the person change their behavior. Giving examples of specific concerns you have will reduce the opportunity for argument.