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Long before your loved one decided to get help for an alcohol use disorder, you probably knew that something was wrong. Some people with an alcohol use disorder feel ashamed about it. They really shouldn’t. Alcohol use disorder in the United States is widespread.
There are approximately 14.1 million adults, ages 18 and older, who suffer from it. Some young adults who are 12 to 17 also have this condition. For those individuals, trying to get sober is often difficult. Many of them will need to go through rehab so they’re able to learn the tools and techniques that they can use when they’re facing challenges with remaining sober.
#1: Remember That Alcohol Use Disorder is a Disease
One thing that you shouldn’t ever do is make fun of the person once they decide to get help. They need to know that they can count on a support system to help them as they go through recovery. Working to get sober from alcohol addiction is hard.
Alcoholism is a disease that leads the individual to consume alcohol even if it’s affecting them or their loved ones in a negative manner. There isn’t a known cause of alcoholism, but there are some risk factors like having low self-esteem or having a family in which alcohol use is commonplace.
#2: Offer Them Support in Staying Sober
One of the most difficult things for a person who’s gone through alcohol rehab is trying to remain sober when there’s alcohol around. In order to support your loved one, you can have gatherings for holidays or other special days without having any alcohol present. This removes the temptation from them. It also shows them that they have a group of loved ones who cares for them enough to support them by staying away from alcohol when they’re together.
#3: Avoid Co-dependency
Some people who are caring for a loved one who has an alcohol use disorder become so wrapped up in trying to make sure the person stays on the right path that they’re obsessed with. You still have to find time and energy to take care of yourself so that you’re able to remain objective as you work to help your loved one.
#4: Help Them Stay Positive
Negative thoughts might begin to cloud the mind of a person who’s struggling to remain sober. Being able to count on their support system to help them stay positive and to see the good sides of situations can encourage them to remain sober. Some individuals turn to alcohol as a way to cope with their feelings. By helping them in this way, you may be able to show them that they don’t need those substances to feel their best.
When you’re trying to determine the best ways to help a loved one who went through alcohol rehab, you have to take your cues from the person. Some people need intensive support but others just want to know that you’re there if they need it. Try to avoid pressuring them into accepting your help if they seem like they don’t want it. Stress may push them away from you and toward the alcohol again.