Alcoholism is a problem many of us are familiar with— even a bit too familiar, for some people. Whether it’s a friend or a family member, it can be quite a heartbreaking scene to witness the people we love waste their lives away because of alcohol abuse.
From dangerous driving under the influence and other encounters with law enforcers to more severe consequences like accidents and even suicide, people who suffer from alcohol use disorder shouldn’t handle the problem alone. Rehabilitation offered by experts like Dr. Maher Soudah and his team at Kaiser Wellness Center are readily available to help the patient recover from his or her excessive drinking.
Despite this, it is important to understand that the right approach by the patient’s friends, relatives, and loved ones would play a critical role in his or her rehabilitation from alcohol abuse. Here are five ways you can help the alcoholic in your life to return to a normal lifestyle.
Have A Deep Understanding Of Alcoholism
A person who doesn’t have a good understanding of the situation cannot possibly help an alcoholic return to normal life. In fact, Dr. Maher Soudah emphasizes the need for the patient’s family and friends to have a good grasp of the situation.
One major thing that most people do not understand is that there is a huge difference between a person who likes drinking and an alcoholic. The former can be considered a casual drinker while the latter won’t be able to resist finishing the bottle laid down in front of him or her.
There are also signs that you should watch out for if you suspect that a family member or friend has an alcohol abuse problem, including:
- Compulsive behaviors
- Dependence on alcohol signaled by withdrawal symptoms
- Extremely high alcohol tolerance
- Loss of coordination
- Self-destructive behavior
Accept That You Cannot Save An Alcoholic
While it may sound a bit counterintuitive, one of the most important ways to help an alcoholic return to his or her life before becoming acquainted with alcohol is to come to terms with the fact that you cannot save them. This is because alcoholism is not a rational condition; this makes it a lot more difficult to cure.
According to Dr. Maher Soudah, cutting off an alcoholic from assistance would be better for the patient than giving him or her an easy way out. Among the most common scenarios are encounters with law enforcement. Bailing an alcoholic out of jail for drunk driving would only give less time to think about the repercussions of alcohol addiction. Thus, it would be harder for him or her to recover from the condition.
Do Not Give In To Your Love For An Alcoholic
After understanding that you cannot save them, you should keep in mind that alcoholics would feel less need to refrain from drinking if there are people “enabling” their addiction. Most of the time, alcoholics use your love for them to their advantage. Never give them money for any situation other than life-threatening ones, so they can immerse more in the consequences of alcohol addiction.
Learn How To Talk To An Alcoholic
While you should stop the kind of support that is “enabling” the alcoholic to drink more, let him or her know what you feel about the excessive drinking. Dr. Soudah explains that family and friends of a patient must talk in the most authentic way possible.
Talk to him or her in a quiet place privately and make sure that he or she understands that you support the recovery in a way that won’t make the person feel like you are forcing rehab. Also, be prepared for a negative reaction. An alcoholic would often go through the denial phase when confronted by a loved one.
Offer To Accompany An Alcohol To AA Meetings
Nothing can prove how serious you are at helping an alcoholic return to his or her normal life than offering to accompany the person to Alcoholics Anonymous and other similar meetings. This would make your loved one feel less alone and would be more motivated to recover from alcohol abuse.