How to Cope with a Loved one Affected by Alcoholism

 

alcoholism

Sonya Cheema

Alcohol Use Disorder (AUD) is a chronic relapsing brain disease and is characterized by compulsive alcohol use, loss of control over alcohol intake, and a negative emotional state when not using. If you suspect a loved one has alcoholism, look for these signs:

  • Unusually high tolerance for alcohol
  • Hiding alcohol
  • Isolation/absence from work
  • Irrational moodiness/emotional ups and downs
  • Dangerous behavior
  • Not being able to stop drinking once he/she starts
  • Lying/manipulation

Keep in mind that alcoholism affects 17 million adults in the US, and that it is a disease. Many people with loved ones suffering from alcoholism tend to think that the affected person is purposely ruining his/her life and trying to upset family members. You would not blame someone with cancer for hurting themselves, so treat alcoholism in a similar manner. The best things to do when dealing with someone with alcoholism are:

  • Having honest and open discussions with the person about love and the relationship
  • Getting help from others, including professionals
  • Committing to change. If you have to make boundaries or personal promises, be sure to stick with them.
  • Empowering yourself. Learn about alcoholism so you can have a better understanding of what your loved one is going through
  • Do not enable (ie: giving them money)
  • Offer to take him/her to therapy or Alcoholics Anonymous (12 step) meetings.
  • Lastly, DO NOT blame yourself. You are not responsible for anyone’s disease.

Alcoholism is never easy to deal with, especially when it is affecting someone close to you. The best you can do is follow the suggestions above and remember that it is not your responsibility to cure him/her.

If you or a person you know is struggling with alcohol use disorder, it may be beneficial to contact a mental health professional and receive therapy. The psychologists, psychiatrists, and therapists at Arista Counseling and Psychiatric Services can help. Contact the Bergen County, NJ or Manhattan offices at (201) 368-3700 or (212) 722-1920. Visit http://www.acenterfortherapy.com for more information.     

 

Information in this blog post was received from:

https://www.niaaa.nih.gov/alcohol-health/overview-alcohol-consumption/alcohol-use-disorders

https://americanaddictioncenters.org/alcoholism-treatment/spouse/

https://www.discoveryplace.info/2016/08/24/the-secrets-to-helping-an-alcoholic-family-member-or-friend/#1526263885900-8943f2ec-6b34

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Drug Addiction and Alcohol Abuse: False Promises – Bergen County, NJ

By: Davine Holness

alcoholism addiction

Alcoholism is one of many addictions from which people suffer

With the ever-increasing number of resources available, there have been numerous success stories for recovering from addictions such as alcoholism. However, even after decades of sobriety, every day can still be a fight against temptation. This temptation is not so much about the substance or activity to which one is addicted; it’s more about the lies the object tells: the promises to fill a hole in the addict’s soul. Resisting addiction is about learning to identify these promises as what they are: false.

 

While the media has given much publicity to alcoholism and substance abuse, people also suffer from addiction to anything from gambling or shopping, to food, sex, or even video games. Recent research has found that sweet, salty, or fatty processed foods cause the same physiological process in the mind of a food addict as crack produces in a cocaine addict (Peeke). However, with help and lifestyle changes, it is possible to overcome addiction and live a sober life.

 

If you are struggling with any kind of addiction, the psychologists, psychiatrists, and therapists at Arista Counseling and Psychiatric Services can help. Contact the Bergen County, New Jersey or Manhattan offices at 201-368-3700 or 212-722-1920. Visit www.acenterfortherapy.com for more information.

 

Sources:

Nakken, C. (1996). The addictive personality: understanding the addictive process and compulsive behavior (2nd ed.). Center City, Minn.: Hazelden.

On Rejecting the False Promise, 25 Years Later – World of Psychology. (n.d). PsychCentral.com. Retrieved May 14, 2012

Peeke, P. & Aalst, M. v. (2012). The hunger fix: the three-stage solution to free yourself from your food addictions for life. Emmaus, Pa.: Rodale Books.

Pencils Down, Bottoms Up: Drinking Culture Among Students

By: Kimberly Made

College Drinking

Drinking has always been considered a part of college life. After a week of classes, exams, and papers, the weekend feels like an oasis in the desert and what better way to celebrate making it through that seemingly never ending wave of stress and sleepless nights than with a drink or two?

But where do we draw the line between harmless fun and alcoholism?

In the land of Thirsty Thursdays and Two Dollar Tuesdays, it seems there’s always an excuse to go out and distract yourself from the stress of your daily life with a few drinks. As college students, we find ourselves in a place where the idea of being an alcoholic is just a mere joke thrown around among friends. How can we be expected to tell the difference between a friend that just really enjoys Vodka Red Bulls and one who may actually have a problem?

Alcohol Abuse is characterized by a maladaptive pattern of alcohol use leading to significant impairment or distress as manifested by at least one of the following within a one-year period:

  1. Recurrent alcohol use resulting in a failure to fulfill major role obligations at work, school or home (e.g., repeated absences or poor work performance related to alcohol use)
  2. Recurrent alcohol use in situations in which it is physically hazardous (e.g., driving while under the influence)
  3. Recurrent alcohol related legal problems (e.g., arrests for alcohol related disorderly conduct)
  4. Continued alcohol use despite having social or interpersonal problems caused by the effects of alcohol (e.g., arguments or physical fights)

While it’s completely normal to go out and enjoy Happy Hour after a long day, it’s important to keep in mind that once alcohol begins to have a negative impact on someone’s day-to-day life, it is time to seek help.

 

If you are concerned that you or anyone you care about may need help dealing with alcohol abuse, the licensed professionals at Arista Counseling and Psychotherapy can assist you.  Contact our Bergen County, NJ or Manhattan offices of psychologists, psychiatrists, and psychotherapists at (201) 368-3700 or (212) 722-1920 to set up an appointment.  Visit http://www.acenterfortherapy.com for more information.