How Can I Help My Alcoholic Friend?

Friends are sometimes closer than family members, and it hurts to see someone you love struggling with an addiction to alcohol. People drink excessively for many different reasons. Your friend might drink to cope with painful life situations such as a rocky relationship, or they might think that they simply enjoy drinking all day as a way to relax.

Your friend will figure out why they drink so much while they are in rehab, but you’ve also got a lot to do with their success in sobriety. Asking how can I help my alcoholic friend is a sure sign that you care deeply about this relationship, and you’ve got tons of ways to jump in and lend a hand.

Encourage Them to Seek Professional Treatment

When you’re asking this question, you are likely in one of two common situations. In the ideal scenario, your friend has already admitted that they have trouble with drinking too much alcohol. Admitting that they have a problem is the first step toward getting help, and this also shows that they trust you with their deepest concerns. If this is the case, then you’ll simply need to show your friend support for going to treatment.

Offering to help them find the right treatment center is a great way to help them get their foot in the door. In the other scenario, you might have a friend who is reluctant to admit that they are struggling. They may refuse to talk about the issue completely, which is often a sign that alcohol has taken over their life to a point where they may not be able to make rational decisions on their own. Or, they might just say that they’ll quit drinking on their own when they’re ready. This type of situation might require you to seek support for yourself. Talking to your friend’s family members and other friends might reveal that other people also have concerns. You can then all work together to convince your friend to enroll in a rehab program.

Ask How You Can Help While They Are In Rehab

Most people with an alcohol addiction will need to start out with inpatient treatment or intensive outpatient care that takes up the majority of their day. This means that they may have specific needs for support while they focus on getting sober. If your loved one is staying as an inpatient at a drug rehab center, then you might ask how you can help them out at home.

Here are a few ideas to get you started on knowing how to help.

  • offer to check on their house periodically
  • ask if they need help with a pet or childcare
  • find out if you can visit or write letters
  • help them create a packing list

Your friend’s personality and lifestyle will play a role in how much help they need. Remember to let them guide your actions, and be flexible enough to take on a new role if new needs arise while they are in treatment. For instance, they may discover that they do need to stay a little longer than planned, and they might reach out to you for help with making sure that things are still okay at their home.

Continue to Support Their Sobriety at Home

The best way to help your newly sober friend is to make life in sobriety seem normal and fun. Your friend will work with their therapist to learn how to manage the bigger underlying causes of their addiction. Your job is to help them figure out new activities that they can do at home to feel happy in sobriety. Make sure to avoid leading your friend into temptation by avoiding drinking around them. Then, just relax and provide them with encouragement as they begin working on creating a new sober lifestyle. Are you wondering how to get your friend into rehab? Let us help you help them! We’re available 24/7 at 833-497-3808 to help you find the right treatment program for your close friend.