Worried about a friend's drinking or drug use?

Esmeralda Nienow asked a question: Worried about a friend's drinking or drug use?
Asked By: Esmeralda Nienow
Date created: Fri, Jul 2, 2021 10:33 PM

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Worried About A Friend's Drinking Or Drug Use? It’s difficult to know when to say something when you’re worried about a friend’s drug or alcohol use. Ask yourself: How does it affect you? Have you lost time from classes, studying, or a job in order to help your friend cope with problems caused by their drinking or drug use?

Spending a great deal of time getting alcohol/drugs, drinking alcohol/using drugs, recovering from its effects, and thinking and planning to use Drinking/using in risky situations such as before driving If you checked any of the items above, please consider talking with a health professional. Someone doesn’t have to be an alcoholic or drug addict to have a drinking or drug problem. Help is available both for you and your friend.

Convey your concern for your friend's well being with specific statements. "I want to talk to you because I am worried about you," or "Our friendship means a lot to me. I don't like to see what's been happening." It is important to openly discuss the negative consequences of your friend's drinking or drug use. Use concrete examples from your list.

Help and support for anyone who's concerned about someone else’s drinking or drug use, including online advice, webchat and local support groups for friends and family.

Chat with an advisor. If you can’t contact Drinkchat in those hours, or would prefer to talk to someone on the phone, you can call Drinkline on 0300 123 1110 (weekdays 9am–8pm, weekends 11am–4pm) and speak to a trained adviser.

Confronting someone about their heavy drinking can be hard on you, too. Talk to a trusted friend, counselor, or spiritual leader about what you’re going through.

Acknowledge that your friend might not see their drug use as a problem. Without an understanding that there’s a problem, there won’t be a solution. Be honest with your friend about what you think the problem is, and make sure they understand that abusing drugs is a serious issue. Talk to your friend about your concerns

It can be very difficult to try to support someone whose problems are associated with their use of recreational drugs or alcohol. You may find it helpful to discuss your feelings and concerns with someone else, such as a counsellor, or to join a support group, such as those provided by your local Adfam or Families Anonymous .

If you’re worried at all about your drug or alcohol use, it can help to talk to someone you trust about it. That could be a friend, parent, teacher or counsellor. You can also contact a helpline service who can help you with how you're feeling.

It's also helpful to frame the conversation by using "I" phrases, such as "I noticed" or "I'm worried" because your friend can't dispute your perceptions and feelings. Be encouraging. Talk about the effect your friend's drinking or drug use has on whatever he or she cares about most: career, children, sports, etc.

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