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Living with an Alcoholic

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The complex plight faced by people who are living with an alcoholic is often overlooked. Those who have to coexist with a person who suffers from alcohol use disorder don’t have the luxury of distance or the option of ignorance. They may find themselves emotionally and financially strained by the work of supporting themselves and an addicted person. They may experience emotional or physical abuse in the course of addiction and may feel obligated to keep their loved one’s addiction a secret, thereby suffering further in silence. If someone you love suffers from alcohol addiction, they may benefit from alcohol rehab in Nashville, TN.

At Nashville Treatment Solutions, we understand that the devastating consequences of addiction are often felt most acutely by those who love and are living with an alcoholic. Therefore, we provide a supportive community, abundant resources for the family members affected by alcoholism, and comprehensive treatment for people experiencing alcohol use disorders. If you’re suffering due to a loved one’s alcoholism, contact us today at 866.714.5630.

Things to Know About Living with an Alcoholic

Alcohol is one of the most accessible and affordable substances in the United States, which lends to the astounding prevalence of Alcohol Use Disorders affecting families today. If a loved one suffers from an alcohol use disorder, there is no doubt that you and other family members are suffering as well.

Many people find that despite their best intentions, they are enabling their loved one’s alcohol dependence by continuing to care for them and bear financial and emotional burdens quietly and steadfastly. If you’re living with someone who has an alcohol addiction, consider these suggestions for making daily life more manageable:

  • Prioritize your safety and well-being and the safety of other vulnerable family members, such as children or pets.
  • Avoid enabling behaviors, including funding the addiction, covering for the person, keeping alcohol around, and maintaining the status quo
  • Restrict access to money. Remove your loved one from or close any joint accounts and avoid giving them cash
  • Consider therapy for yourself and, if applicable, your children
  • Get your loved one into a treatment program if possible
  • Beware of codependency or placing exaggerated value and personal fulfillment on caring for an alcoholic family member

Understanding Alcohol Use Disorder in a Loved One

Alcohol use disorder is a severe chronic illness with myriad physical and psychological consequences. Unfortunately, for most people experiencing addiction, the impacts are negligible and unimportant compared to getting and using the substance they’re addicted to. This leads to significant problems in living for the person experiencing addiction and the loved ones who care for them.

For a person experiencing addiction, the presence of alcohol in their environment is an undeniable trigger. It is unrealistic to keep alcohol around or continue drinking while expecting an addicted loved one to avoid the temptation.

You might even witness your loved one going through withdrawal from alcohol. A person with an active alcohol use disorder may become erratic, unpredictable, or violent during withdrawal. It’s impossible to reason peacefully with someone with an alcohol use disorder, which becomes challenging.

How to Help an Alcoholic Parent

The best way to help an alcoholic parent is to help yourself first. Children of alcoholics face a particularly significant set of risks and challenges that can cause lifelong trauma if left unattended and may even lead to another generation of substance abuse. Finding a supportive community or program such as Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) or family therapy can help mitigate these consequences. Remember not to do these things while helping a loved one:

  • Blame yourself
  • Take it personally
  • Try to cure or control
  • Enable by lending money, procuring alcohol, etc.
  • Cover for the alcoholic
  • Accept unacceptable behavior
  • Have unreasonable expectations, such as expecting honesty from a person incapable of being honest with themselves
  • Remain overly attached to the past. Alcoholism is a progressive disease
  • Put off getting help

A rehab program is the best way to mitigate these risks and challenges and begin to untangle any damage already done. Many alcohol rehab programs offer extensive family therapy and support resources in addition to addiction treatment.

Help the Alcoholic You are Living With at Nashville Treatment Solutions

At Nashville Treatment Solutions, we understand alcoholism and the pervasive, multifaced consequences of this progressive disease. It can be challenging living with an alcoholic. However, our team can help your family get the resources they need. Our approach to alcohol rehab respects the individual, is nonjudgmental, and is based on a community foundation. It can be very challenging to help a loved one with a substance use disorder. Still, with assistance from Nashville Treatment Solutions, we can help your family better understand addiction and the best ways to help. Contact us at 866.714.5630 to experience the transformative power of community in recovery.