Addiction Treatment Program: What’s the Best Way to Deal With an Alcoholic Family Member?

Question by Miz D: What’s the best way to deal with an alcoholic family member?
Lots of anger, blames his problems on everyone but himself, uses any excuse to get drunk, etc. If you’ve had to deal with this situation I would appreciate hearing your advice.

Best answer:

Answer by ?ImmaStar?
Ignore them… stay out of their way….

Know better? Leave your own answer in the comments!

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22 Responses to “Addiction Treatment Program: What’s the Best Way to Deal With an Alcoholic Family Member?”

  • Calvin B:


  • Patrick H:

    I wouldn’t let it bother you. Move out if you can. Those people are selfish.

  • ~Jessika~:

    My mom was that way. Speak to a school counselor and maybe they can help you go about things the best and safest way. Or someone at an agency around you who helps with stuff like that.

  • The Wife:

    Sometimes… I know it’s hard… but you have to walk away. I grew up with alcoholics and had friends who are… If they don’t want any help and don’t see their behavior as a problem but how they are living is seriously affecting your life… you have to turn your back. No amount of bickering, yelling, coercion etc is going to make them see. It’s now time to take care of you.

  • Blue Rose:

    With patience and tolerance. It is a disease. And until they ask for help you can not. The rest of the family needs to intervene and confront the alcoholic with their issues all at one time when that person admits to his problem. It is not easy and will take a lot of time and love. Until then, stay back.

  • Edward Bongshanks:

    Leave them alone to die. You can’t help people who don’t want to help themselves. Just stop being around them and don’t invite them to family functions anymore.

  • Shelly:

    wow this sounds exactly like my brother and he has had two duis so until recently he has had to go to aa and supposedly he is not drinking anymore but he is still veryn moody. My therapist says that there are support groups for family members with other family members that have addictions like alcohol and so on. Mainly you have to be extremely patient and understand where it is coming from.

  • Dinah:

    The only close example happened to someone I know. What she did was leave him after about three years of trying everything else, and make it repeatedly clear she would not come back unless he stopped drinking. It took him about six months, but he stopped, she went back, and he hasn’t started again, these three years now.

  • Vincent:

    Go to your phone book, find the number for “ALANON,” and call them now. You’ll immediately be in touch with many people who have experience dealing with exactly the same problem which you have.

    I wish you well.

  • Patti:

    Yes I have had to deal with that. My ex-husband would never accept blame for anything he did. It was maddening to try to talk to him about anything and he would point his finger in my face. I finally had to leave, 10 years was my limit and it was taking a toll on my health and our daughter. They have a problem with reality and personal responsibility.

    Find a trusted friend to talk to because keeping the problem inside is the worst thing that you can do.

  • bookseller:

    I did for a long time and really there isn’t a solid answer. It’s a cliche but the person needs to realise they have a problem before anyone can even begin to help.

    Once they have admitted to having a problem everyone can begin to move forward and find ways to help.

    I can say, never support their addiction by buying them alcohol (no matter how much they beg) keep money away from them if they are liable to steal it.

    One of the worst things you can do is start an argument over it, this never ends well, trust me!

    Have you had a medical professional intervene? If not this might be somewhere to start.

    The alcoholic in my family was told that if she didn’t change, her husband would leave. She never touched a drop since then, nearly 8 years now.

  • Daisymae:

    I knew a close family friend who was an alcoholic and sometimes you just have to let go or they take you down with them. If you can find intervention therapy somewhere that may help jolt them back to reality. But the person we knew died of asphyxiation at age 44. His liver was shot. Very sad. He really tried (detox and AAs) and did not want to be that way, but he said he really liked the taste of the stuff.


    I had a girlfriend that turned into an alcoholic and no matter what I tried to get her help or help myself did no good.Finally she started stealing from me to buy her alcohol so I filed charges on her and she left.Each situation has a few differences but the bottom line is they have to want help before help can be given.Unfortunately you have to give up and dis-associate yourself from them.

  • Suzie s:

    Alcoholism is a disease just like any other disease, that person needs support.

  • Chris G:

    sounds cruel but i’d take a small video cam or an audio recorder and document their drunken rants. If they deny their behavior the next day, make him or her watch/listen to it. Then suggest counselling or set up an intervention.

  • thekittenators:






  • Your:

    well when my brother started drinking so much and didn’t care what we had to say about it well it made it kinda worst he would drink more and more then his daughters (11yr) and (15yr) would cry to him so he can stop but he would just tell her to mind her own business but then my niece and nephews ages 3-8yr would tell him why do you drink so much and i don’t want you to die well i guess that hit him really hard and he started to cry and enrolled himself in an AA class hes sober now and drinks one beer only on a special occasion

  • samantha:

    that’s the same situation im in… i just try to igonre them.. i try to help when i can you should ask them why and what purpose there is for drinking there isnt any “high” that you couldn’t get at a church…..just ask them to do something that includes being with family and not just sitting alone drinking alll the time. there has to be a reason they are drinking noone drinks for no reason.

  • rosebud:

    You describe the absolute alcoholic, and nothing will change this person except his own desire to change. I suggest that everyone close to this person go to Al-Anon at least one time to learn how to take care of themselves when trying to deal with their alcoholic family member. If you go once, chances are you’ll want to go back to find out how others are dealing with this problem. Sometimes alcoholics have to hit rock bottom before they can even begin to see their own problems, but you don’t have to let them bring you down with them.

  • irishlady:

    AL-ANON this is what the family needs. They’re listed in your phone directory they’re all over. Alcoholism is a disease & it affects everyone who is involved with an Alcoholic. Al-Anon is for family & friends of so you can learn about the disease also you will get help. It’s an anonymous program & free.You can’t stop or change the person but you can stop & change what you’re doing.Please call & go to the meetings & you’re not alone in this OK

  • cutsup:

    don’t deal with them. if they don’t care enough about themselves to get need help, to hell with them. all this is just a crutch to avoid the real world and, i drink but, not constantly and to excess.

  • Bert Weidemeier:

    Sounds like my sister. Eventually, she just stopped talking to the whole family and left 5 years ago, we have no idea where she went or what she’s doing.

    The best thing is to keep your distance, if not, you’ll always be fighting with them.

    They make life really tough and stressful for everyone, because they’re not smart enough to know they’re the cause of their own problems.

    Good Luck (believe me, you’ll need it)