This is Part One of our series on 10 Ways to Get Your Loved One to Stop Drinking Alcohol.
Getting a loved one to stop drinking alcohol is not easy. People that abuse alcohol, get emotionally attached to it. And your negative reaction to their drinking problem might make things worse. Jumping into things like trying to help a loved one to stop drinking without having a specific plan will probably lead to a dead end. You might find yourself stuck when now is the time to act. So, it’s important to keep an open line of communication, have as much understanding of the situation as you can, and calculate your moves. Here are some tips to help you get your loved one to stop drinking:
1. Understand the Problem
Doing your homework before approaching your loved one will help you gather valuable information and understand the problem. Keep in mind that your loved one might refuse to quit alcohol no matter what you say. And it will be even worse if you don’t have facts and arguments to back up the conversation while trying to make a valuable point. Having a clear idea of the person’s drinking habits, the difference between alcohol abuse and alcoholism and the way excessive alcohol intake affects the person’s health, personal and professional life is a major thing when helping someone quit alcohol. Bear in mind that if your loved one has crossed the line and is an alcoholic, you will need outside help.
Many times, being close to someone leads to you missing out on important details, so make sure the information is accurate and you are not accusing your loved one of something they haven’t done.
2. Discuss the Problem
Once you understand what alcohol abusers go through and how alcohol affects the brain, it’s time to talk to your loved one. Approaching someone with this type of problem is hard, but you need to keep communication lines open. Schedule time for a private meeting between you and the person you are concerned about. It is best if the meeting takes place somewhere you both feel comfortable. Also, the person needs to be sober. Start the conversation by expressing your concerns about his/her condition, and their behavior lately.
Remember to be patient, supportive, and caring. Therefore, try to avoid creating a hostile environment where the person will feel threatened and look for a way to escape. Instead, be honest and listen to his/her side of the story. Inform the person that you know about the alcohol problem and that you are concerned about them losing full control over it. After that, the person will feel obligated to give you an explanation. The explanation can go both ways. One is them coming straight and admitting they have a problem. Or Two, complete denial or trying to make you understand they take alcohol for fun and can stop consuming it at any time.
Figuring Out the Real Reason Behind Alcohol Abuse
If your loved one admits he/she has a drinking problem and needs help, you are one step closer to getting them to quit. But if they avoid admitting they have a problem, there is only one thing to do. Use the information you previously learned to convince them of the opposite. The goal is to raise awareness that the drinking habit has become worse and is negatively affecting their health, personal, and professional life. Even though this is not a simple thing to do, through the conversation you need to also show you are compassionate for what they are going through. This will help you discover the reason behind the alcohol abuse, in case you don’t know it yet.
Knowing the real reason behind your loved one’s alcohol abuse or addiction will help them understand there are different ways to solve the underlying problem rather than trying to solve it with alcohol. Alcohol makes things worse and is typically not the real problem. So, you need to address the issue that causes the drinking problem, which is hard because the person might refuse to open up. In this case, don’t insist. It will be for the best if you wait before having another conversation while in the meantime try other ways to help.
3. Suggest an Alcohol Rehab Program
Getting professional help is the best approach for solving a drinking problem, regardless of its size. An addiction specialist or a psychotherapist will first evaluate the person’s condition. Then, they will discover the reasons behind the problem, support the person and work with them through recovery. If there is no other way of you convincing your loved one about the drinking problem, sometimes scheduling an intervention is an appropriate step. Other alternatives can include an outpatient program that will allow him or her to continue with regular activities while receiving treatment. It is also important for you to continue being involved in the process of recovery.
For more information please call this Toll Free 24/7 Addiction Treatment Helpline at (844) 439-4765. This is a completely confidential call. If you have health insurance it may cover up to 100% of the treatment cost. So please call now!