How to Help an Alcoholic Who Doesn't Want Help

How to help an alcoholic who doesn’t want help? That is one of the most asked question when it comes to alcoholism. Alcoholism is one of the most common addictions, and it is sad to see a loved one emerging into that self-destructive action. One of the biggest issues regarding addiction of a similar category is we do not know the proper ways of helping an alcoholic.

How to Know if Someone is an Alcoholic?

It can be hard to know if someone is an alcoholic since most tend to hide their addiction from people they know and love. These could be the signs to tell if someone you know is suffering from alcoholism:

How to help an alcoholic who doesn't want help

1. Learn about alcoholism and addiction

According to American Psychiatric Association, alcoholism falls under Substance Use Disorder (SUD), which is a mental health issue. Therefore, there are complexities in convincing an addict to get help. In order to successfully approach an alcoholic and help them, you have to first learn about addiction more. Firstly, you should understand that alcoholism is a mental health issue and the research by PLOS ONE states it is directly linked to our brain. Also, understand the symptoms of alcoholism and read from trusted sources like Alcoholics Anonymous, NIAAA, etc., to get the latest information and help.



2. Be careful with your approach

The beginner steps to help an alcoholic is a good approach. You should have a conversation with the alcoholic person on this matter in full privacy and at the right time. For example, having such a conversation while the person is drunk or not in the best mood may not help at all. Understand which is the right time and ensure that there is no disturbance while you have this conversation.

Ensure that you have created a conversation in your mind and recited it before you approach. Being calm and collective is a necessity for this process. It is a challenge, after all, and a hard one! So, take your time and be brave.

3. Do not use guilt or judgment

Alcoholism can be linked to a person’s mental illness, such as depression, bipolar disorder, and so on. And even if the alcoholic you know does not suffer from mental illness, you should never pass judgement or make them feel guilty.


Do not use phrases like these with a person dealing with addiction

Instead, it would be best if you use encouraging words like these:

Whenever they open up to you about their addiction, it is important to listen and be empathetic instead of judging their actions. It can be hard sometimes to relate to their issues and find them guilty of their action, but you must understand that addiction of such sort is related to one’s brain.

4. Stop enabling

A lot of us enable our loved one’s addiction by helping it directly or indirectly. For example, when a person (continuously) takes money from you to buy alcohol, you are supporting their addiction. Moreover, if you are taking their responsibilities into your own hand, like doing their groceries or buying them food, you are enabling. In this state, the addicted person does not feel discomfort in addiction and sees their life going as usual. In conclusion, they find it hard to see the issue. Firstly, you should set up some boundaries. For example, not letting the person drink in your house, not letting them associate with other addicted individuals, etc. Secondly, stop covering up for the alcoholic, do not fund their addiction and instead of taking their responsibilities into your hand, help them do the tasks on their own. Lastly, remember while going through this process, it is important not to be hard on your friend or loved one who is suffering from addiction. Ensure that you are not using a judgmental tone but a loving one.


5. Offer your support

 It is an obvious point, but there is more to it! While helping someone with addiction, you should give your company. Emotional support can help a person stop drinking and get back to a healthy life. And even after withdrawal, you should continue this support and make a friendly environment for them. In such a way, you can easily handle an addicted loved one if they are in the primary stage and are not suffering from clinical mental illnesses.


6. Don’t feel guilty if you can’t help

There are a lot of people with complicated mental illness and alcoholism issues, which makes it very hard for most people to help them. Blaming yourself for your loved one’s refusal only frustrates you and makes this process harder than it should be.

Also, it isn’t true that there is no hope when you have failed a lot trying to get your loved one into rehab. Keep trying and getting closer while offering validation. When nothing works, you should seek help from someone who knows more about intervention than you do. This factor takes us to our last point.


7. Take professional help

There are a lot of people neglecting the need for rehab. If you haven’t been able to help someone you know to get into a rehabilitation center, you can get professional help.


The process of intervention consists of the help and advice of a professional counselor and the confrontation of friends, family, coworkers and loved ones. Moreover, professional therapists do a phenomenal job that can help you to get your loved one into alcohol treatment.


You can force someone under 18 into rehab, but it isn’t as easy for adults. In 37 states, including Georgia, Involuntary Commitment Laws for Addiction Treatment exists. This law allows you to force someone into rehab but there are certain guidelines for each state that should be checked.

Be considerate and listen to your alcoholic friend or a loved one. Do not judge them for their addiction, instead offer them company whenever they feel comfortable. Learn more about addiction and gradually offer them help.

Retreat of Atlanta for Alcohol Detox Treatment

Retreat of Atlanta first works to remove the factors that may disturb your rehabilitation process, such as stress. Moreover, we customize rehab plans for each person according to their mental health conditions and needs. As a result, if you have underline mental disorders and it is affecting your rehabilitation process greatly, we will be able to help with our experts. The hardest part of getting out of alcoholism and other drug addiction is the detoxification process of alcohol that triggers withdrawal symptoms. We help reduce such symptoms and get rid of the pain to ensure a smooth recovery.

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