Time to Talk: How To Tell Your Mate They’re Drinking Too Much

We’re coming up to a time of the year when we’re regularly catching up with friends, and colleagues and generally socializing that little bit more ahead of Christmas. It’s a period where often the booze is free-flowing and for many, it’s less drink responsively, more drink irresponsibly.

Which of course is very much that, irresponsible. Alcohol abuse can be hugely harmful and cause health problems as well as the fact that alcohol addiction is a truly destructive disease, of which you wouldn’t want anyone to go through, least of all your friends.

Trips to the pub and a few beers is part and parcel for many when it comes to catching up with friends, but you could well be worried that one of your good friends is drinking too much and they may have a problem with alcohol.

So, what should you do if you think that your friend needs to seek help from a Substance Abuse Professional Provider?

Well, it’s a very difficult subject to bring up with friends, but it’s a conversation that will benefit them, and even yourself if their drinking is starting to put a strain on your relationship. So, how exactly do you go about raising it?

Pick a good time

Firstly, timing is everything. You need to ensure you get them at a good moment and certainly not at a time when they are under the influence of alcohol. The morning after the night before is also not the finest time to do so, with them likely to be suffering from a hangover.

Catch them when they’re relaxed and more in the mood for a conversation and do ensure you have plenty of time with them to have a thorough chat about it. If you’re meeting your friend for a quick half an hour, it’s probably not the right amount of time you’ll need.

Don’t blame or accuse, be open and honest

What you say is also mightily important. You don’t want to be confrontational or accusatory as that will only put them on the back foot and start to be defensive. You need to be calm, collected and open to a conversation rather than bluntly saying they drink too much and may have a problem.

Be caring in your approach, so lead with something like, “I’m a bit worried about your drinking”, or even ask them if they are worried about their drinking.

Leave the conversation open for a part two

It’s likely that your friend may feel a little blindsided by the conversation and may not have been expecting it, so it may be that you say your piece and your friend goes away and thinks about it.

You don’t want to push the issue too much as that may strain your relationship, but at the same time, you shouldn’t give up either as you are concerned about their health. Let them know that you’re there for them and always open to having a chat about the matter once they’ve had a think about it. Alongside this, you should also let them know you’ll be there for them during any addiction treatment or rehab programs they may benefit from.