How to Help an Alcoholic: A Guide for Friends and Family

Alcoholism is a serious problem that affects millions of people around the world. Learn how friends & family can help an alcoholic by understanding the disease & providing support & resources.

How to Help an Alcoholic: A Guide for Friends and Family
Alcoholism is a serious problem that affects millions of people around the world. It can be difficult to know how to help someone who is struggling with alcoholism, but there are steps that friends and family can take to support their loved one. This guide will provide an overview of the best ways to help an alcoholic, from understanding the disease to providing support and resources.

What is Alcoholism?

Alcoholism is a chronic disease characterized by a physical and psychological dependence on alcohol. It is a progressive disorder, meaning that it can worsen over time if left untreated. People with alcoholism often have difficulty controlling their drinking, and they may continue to drink even when it causes problems in their lives.

Signs of Alcoholism

It can be difficult to recognize the signs of alcoholism in someone you care about. Some common signs include: drinking more than usual, drinking alone or in secret, having blackouts or memory lapses after drinking, neglecting responsibilities due to drinking, and having withdrawal symptoms when not drinking. If you notice any of these signs in your loved one, it may be time to take action.

How to Help an Alcoholic

If you think someone you care about is struggling with alcoholism, there are several steps you can take to help them. The first step is to talk to them about your concerns. It’s important to approach the conversation with compassion and understanding. Let them know that you are there for them and that you want to help. The next step is to encourage them to seek professional help. There are many resources available for people struggling with alcoholism, including support groups, counseling, and rehabilitation programs. Encourage your loved one to take advantage of these resources and offer your support throughout the process. It’s also important to set boundaries with your loved one. Let them know that you will not enable their drinking or tolerate any dangerous behavior. Make sure they understand that you are there for them but that they need to take responsibility for their own actions. Finally, it’s important to take care of yourself as well. Caring for someone with alcoholism can be emotionally draining, so make sure you have a strong support system of your own. Seek out counseling or join a support group if needed.


Helping someone who is struggling with alcoholism can be difficult, but it’s important to remember that recovery is possible. With the right support and resources, your loved one can learn how to manage their addiction and live a healthier life. By following the steps outlined above, you can provide the help and support they need on their journey towards recovery.
Kendra Whirry
Kendra Whirry

Amateur twitter ninja. Lifelong beer maven. Professional beer ninja. Friendly twitter geek. Award-winning twitter advocate.