The feelings of helplessness and confusion that come along with having an alcoholic parent can be overwhelming and isolating. If your mother struggles with alcohol addiction, it’s important to remember that you’re not alone in this experience. There are many resources available to help you and your mother.
In this article, we’ll look at how to help an alcoholic mother without alienating her and getting her into treatment as soon as possible.
Does My Mother Drink Too Much?
According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism guidelines, your mother drinks too much if she drinks more than 1 drink per day or 7 drinks per week in a repeated cycle. However, the answer to this question still depends on a couple of actions and signs of alcoholism that your mother is showing, such as:
If your mother is drinking more alcohol than usual or drinking at inappropriate times, such as in the morning or before work, it could be an indication that she is consuming too much.
Changes in Behavior
If you notice a sudden change in your mother’s behavior, such as her becoming more aggressive or hostile, having difficulty controlling her temper, and displaying signs of depression, it could be an indication that she is drinking too much.
Lack of Motivation
If tasks and activities that used to bring your mother joy are now unimportant to her, this could be a sign of excessive alcohol consumption. She may also become less interested in engaging with family and friends or maintaining relationships with them.
Heavy drinking can lead to physical symptoms such as weight gain or loss, fatigue, slowed reflexes, slurred speech, red eyes, flushed skin, or jaundice.
Alcohol can be expensive, and if your mother is having financial problems due to excessive drinking, then this could be a sign that her consumption has gotten out of control.
Poor Health Habits
If you notice your mother neglecting basic hygiene habits or skipping meals in favor of drinking, this could be a sign that she is drinking excessively. Additionally, if her eating habits have become disordered with frequent binges on unhealthy foods and snacks, this could also be related to excessive drinking.
If your mother denies that she has a problem or uses alcohol to cope with difficult emotions or situations, this could be an indicator that she may be drinking too much.
4 Things You Can Do to Help an Alcoholic Mother
It’s understandable to feel hopeless if your mother is struggling with alcoholism and you want to help her. So here are some things you can do as an adult child of an alcoholic to show your support:
Educate and Help Yourself
Educate yourself about the disease of alcoholism so you can better understand what she is going through. With this, you can learn the triggers, relapse warning signs, and others. Moreover, children of addicts need help too, and through education and counseling, you can also get a hold on your mental wellness and solve the underlying issues of your mother being an alcoholic.
Reach Out to Other Family Members and Friends
Reach out for help from other family members or friends who may be more understanding and supportive. It’s important not to try and tackle this alone, and having the support of others can make all the difference in helping your mother in her recovery.
Give Your Unconditional Support
Offer your unconditional support and love to your mother during this difficult time, but make sure that you also set healthy boundaries for yourself in order to take care of yourself first. This will help ensure both of you are able to navigate this process in a way that is positive and empowering for both of you.
Seek Professional Addiction Treatment For Your Mother
There are a number of alcohol rehabs in Washington State that offer evidence-based treatment and therapies for alcoholic mothers. There are behavioral therapies, experiential therapies, medication-assisted treatment, and family therapy to help mend the relationship between the alcoholic mother and other family members. All these addiction treatment programs can provide her with the necessary tools and resources needed for a successful recovery from addiction.
It’s important to remember that recovery from addiction is a process that takes time and consistency. Remind her often that she has your support every step of the way and help watch out for signs of relapse to prevent her from spiraling down again.
Women’s Alcohol Rehab at Free By The Sea
It can be difficult to watch your mother struggle with alcoholism, but know that there is help available for both of you and that you are not alone in this process. Free By The Sea offers a comprehensive women’s alcohol and drug rehab in Washington State that targets the specific needs of women in order to get sober. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help an alcoholic mother recover.
Dr. Richard Crabbe joined our team in 2019 as our psychiatrist and medical director. He attended the University of Ghana Medical School where he became a Medical Doctor in 1977. From 1978 through 1984, he was a medical officer in the Ghana Navy and provided a variety of services from general medicine to surgeries. He received his Certificate in General Psychology from the American Board of Psychology and Neurology in 2002.