How to Confront a Friend or Loved One Who Has a Problem With Alcohol and Other Drugs
known my boyfriend now for about 5 years. Over the course of that time weve had our
ups and downs but overall things have been pretty good. Weve talked about getting
married but theres one thing that troubles mehis drinking. I think over the
course of the last five years his drinking has become more and more of a problem. My
mother was stuck in a marriage for thirty-five years with an alcoholic and I dont
want the same thing to happen me. How can I talk to my boyfriend about my concerns?
have concerns about your boyfriends drinking, I would encourage you to not ignore
them or be talked out of them. Its critical for your physical, emotional,
psychological, and spiritual well-being that you trust yourselftrust what
youre seeing, trust what youre thinking, and trust what youre feeling!
talking to your boyfriend about your concerns, let me offer you the following suggestions.
not put your conversation with him off until you find the perfect time. There is no
perfect time to have a conversation with your boyfriend about his drinking and your
concerns. Just remember, if your boyfriend does have a drinking problem, it will only get
worse over time.
not confront your boyfriend when he is drinking or drunk. Have the conversation with your
boyfriend at a time and place that you feel emotionally, psychologically, and physically
not blame your boyfriend for his drinking problem. Alcoholism is a disease not a moral
not threaten your boyfriend. Confront your boyfriend only with actions that you will
take if his problems continue without him addressing those problems.
not allow your boyfriend to change the subject or start blaming you or anybody else. Keep
your conversation with him on point: 1.) His drinking, 2.) Your concerns about his
drinking, 3.) The impact of his drinking on you and the consequences of his continued
drinking as it relates to you and your relationship with him.
not overwhelm your boyfriend with opinions and judgments about his drinking. Stick
strictly to the facts, not your judgments or opinions, about his drinking. For example:
a.) On such and such a day, you drank to excess, got behind the wheel of a car and put me
at risk. When that happened, it made me feel
, b.) On such and such a day, you drank
to excess and had an affair with the waitress at the bar. When that happened, it made me
, c.) On such and such a day, you drank to excess and slugged a security guard
at the dance club. When that happened, it made me feel.
you ultimately decide to do, please make sure that you dont neglect your emotional
and spiritual well-being. Alcohol problems can adversely affect even the hardiest of
people. This may sound counter-intuitive but taking care of yourself can be helpful for
your boyfriend as well. I wish you luck!
more information about how to best cope with and confront your loved ones use of
alcohol and other drugs you can contact Alateen at Al-Anon Family Group Headquarters,
Family Group Headquarters, Inc.
1600 Corporate Landing Parkway
Virginia Beach, Va. 23454
Tel # 757-563-1600
Fax # 757-563-1655
1-888-425-2666 for meeting information
Monday-Friday, 8am to 6 pm ET except holidays
from chemical dependency and its impact on family members. Raise your children to choose
to be alcohol and other drugs free. Learn how to in Dr. Frischs, Psy.D. Recovery
Insanity to Serenity.
Dont ignore what you see, feel, and believe about somebodys drug and alcohol
2.) Dont minimize what you see, feel, and believe about somebodys drug and
3.) Remember that chemical dependency is a progressive disease. If you have your
suspicions now about somebodys drug and alcohol use, things will only get worse with
time if your friend or loved one does have a problem
4.) Be clear about what you want to say to somebody whom you have concerns about their
drug or alcohol use
5.) Be clear about what actions you will take if your friend or loved one continues to
refuse to address their problem. Communicate that consequences in a calm, non-threatening
6.) Speak only the facts as you know them. Do not inject opinion, judgment, or blame in to