How can I help my brother who is an alcoholic?

My brother was in rehab for drugs and alcohol issues and his counselor wanted a face to face meeting so I drove mom there and all I could hear was screaming, I guess it was all mom’s fault that he had these issues. They need to take the lead as no one can force anyone to get clean and stay cleaned. Good luck to you and your parents, and to your brother

He has to want to help himself . You can’t help him if he doesn’t want it. Sometimes helping is walking away.
My little brother does math. He only stays clean while he is in jail and does what is court ordered after jail. Then he goes to using again. Its hard, but sometimes that’s what you have to do.

Go back to rehab but have a plan after rehab! If it’s too stressful being at his parents he needs to find somewhere else to go or it’ll be all for nothing! He can’t put his self in situations of temptation for a while. Going to parties or places that serve alcohol. It’s good to get a hobby to keep his mind of it. It could be anything wood crafting, cooking, landscaping anything! Something that gives you a sense of accomplishment after it’s done. And to be surrounded only by support, if he has to give up good ppl/friends or family that will temp him, he still has to lose their number and give them up. A lot is on him if he wants to be sober. You can only do so much. In the end it’s up to him.

I have also lived with family with addictions - please find an Al-Anon group…that helped me immensely…all the best…


He has to want to but planting that seed of hope is never a bad idea. Maybe find some people in recovery and have him meet with them or even just one person. Let him see the good life. If he doesn’t want it nothing with work even though it’s hard to say that.

Don’t enable, pray to your God and hope that he decides to change on his own because that is the only way it will ever last.

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Unfortunately you can not help him. He has to do it himself. It is very hard and very sad to see but trust me I went through the same situation awhile ago. Also because he is 41 it is all on him. After so many yrs of trying to help and do whatever for my brother I had to give up and the outcome wasn’t a good one. I wish you all the best and good luck… let em know you will always be there for him and you love him and talk to him alot. Unfortunately for me it ended bad he passed and we didn’t speak for yrs so I couldn’t say all that to my brother and its something I carry with me :frowning:. Good luck

I’ve learned that you can’t help anyone that doesn’t want it. They have to be mentally and/or physically “done” to let go.

He might need therapy to get to the root of why he keeps turning to drinking. I have never had to deal with this directly. But know plenty who have been addicted. Biggest key also is no enabling. Don’t make it easy. But DO love him. :heart: best of luck to you.

My brother has been sober for almost 7 years. Honestly, it took the woman he loved to be done with him. He quit drinking and she took him back after about a year of sobriety. Then they were married later on. He has since quit smoking for her as well.

It’s not going to be the same for everyone, but the loss of someone over one’s addiction can sometimes do the trick. I suspect my brother was ready to quit for himself as well.

They have to want the help. It doesnt matter how often you tell them they need it or offer to help them. If they dont legitably want it and want it hard, then it wont happen

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He has to take the first step in wanting to change. Then he will accept your help. If I’ve learned anything in my life, you can’t make someone do something they don’t wanna do. Prayers to you and your family. And I hope your brother finds peace

Honestly? Cut him out of your life. He clearly doesn’t want to get his habit under control, so remove him from your life. He can be allowed back in AFTER he has been sober for some years, has a steady job and his own home.

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No one can help unless he helps himself first. He has to want it to happen… he cant stop completely, it is very dangerous. If he wld leave his parents where would he go? It cld make matters worse. Maybe he could stay with u? Help him gradually come off the drink?

People are responsible for their own behavior, they can bring up all kinds of excuses but they still have to live with those choices. It’s not society’s fault that they think they are special.

He has to be ready to be clean and sober. And sometimes it takes the right rehab.

Stop enabling him. If he isn’t forced to stand alone, he will never get sober. My ex was a bad alcoholic and he caused a bad accident and even that did change him. He became homeless. During that time his mom died and he didn’t show up for the funeral. That was the last straw. I sold our house and got permission to leave the state with my younger son. Enough is enough. He lost everything. He came from a wealthy family too. Money did not help. Made it worse because his parents kept helping him. After the funeral his father said he was on his own. Took him a year to get clean. My kids have no communication with him. Just a selfish man who made excuses for everything he did!!! I told my kids you don’t reward bad behavior!!! Very sad. If your brother commits a crime he can go to jail and me taken care of the hard way!!! My brother spent a year in jail for aggravated robbery to get his drugs/alcohol.

So sorry but supporting him and his habit doesn’t work he needs to need to get sorted and the only way is to kick him out. It’s no longer your brother it’s the Alcohol that is alive. I feel so sorry for everyone involved but he has to decide what to do when he will eventually hits rock bottom. I hate what alchol does to people. It’s worse than this pandemic we are all in.

My rehab program focused on finding my triggers, alcoholism often comes from an attempt to numb out some pain be it physical or emotional. Finding that painful root and finding a healthy way to let it go/distract from it is key. Also my rehab focused not on abstinence from alcohol but on self control. It may sound weird, but taking control of an addiction is very empowering.

Please don’t take offense to this cuz I think it’s great that you want to help. Sadly you can’t fix other people. It has to be something he wants to do. It has to come from within. If he wants help, he’ll ask for it. There are AA meetings he can attend but he has to be dedicated if it’s what he wants. If you want, you can attend Al-Anon meetings to help you and get support from others going through alcoholism in their surroundings.

My alcoholic brother after his wife left him, after he quit his job( all consequences of alcohol).Was fine moving home with mom to drink himself to death.Well my mom passed.Not even that put him to his bottom.Cant make them.You cannot save someone from themselves.Ultimately.

Straight out u can’t help someone that doesn’t help them self, I also have a brother that is an alcholic, dug addict, gambler, for over 25 yrs the family had tried helping him, I’ve walked away from the family cause he will kill one of them one day and I can’t watch that

If he doesn’t want to help himself there is nothing you can do except not support his drinking. My brother was an alcoholic since he was a teenager, he passed 3 years ago at 50. Everyone did everything they could but it did nothing because he didn’t want to get better.

I am speaking from 2 perspectives. My late husband was an alcoholic who died from cirrhosis. There was nothing I could do to make him stop drinking. I loved him and took care of him when he was sick. His regret came when he truly realized he was dying. After he was gone I coped by doing drugs for a while. I didn’t realize I had a problem until I realized I had a problem. No one could tell me … I had to see it for myself. It’s a struggle. Your brother won’t get sober until he is ready. Your parents should probably tell him to leave but that’s not your issue. It’s theirs. Don’t be co-dependent. You can’t change this, it’s not your job. It’s your brothers job to determine what kind of life he wants to live. I’m sorry you and your family are going through this, it’s not easy. :two_hearts::two_hearts::two_hearts:

Sadly the alcohol is his crutch to escape the issue he is running from. You can continue to be there for him and give him hope. Knowing he is willing to do rehab and is successful to a point. Try and find out what the “thing” is that is happening for him to relapse. Being his friend and giving him an ear is the best thing for him. He trusts you. Just don’t fall into the enabling habit. Stay supportive but don’t purchase… Hope this helps you. Love and light on this journey.

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I can almost guarantee that your parents enable him by letting him live there, giving him money, and whatever else.

You have to cut him off completely, he either stops or he loses his place to live and can go out and be a drunk on the street. :tipping_hand_woman:t2:


Unfortunately, HE has to want to get better. Nothing you can do will change that. Tough love. That’s gotta be the hardest thing to do but you and your parents cannot enable him. That includes feeding and housing him. :sob:.

As Trish said they have to hit rock bottom and want to help themselves. No one can do it for him. The more you try the worse it gets.It took almost dieing with 2 alcohol poisonings for me to quit… The 2nd time I had 97% alcohol in my liver I was only 29.I was drinking 2 bottles of Crown Royal a day.Luckily no rehab and I’ve been sober now for 23 years and I was a Nightclub DJ and luckily stayed sober.I think my job was my rehab. I just recently got out of the club business at 52

He has to want to stop himself. If he drinks alot daily do not allow him to stop drinking suddenly as it can cause seizures and death.

Sorry the only answer I can give you is, you can’t. My dad was an alcoholic, he died back in April and there was nothing any of us could do to help him because he didn’t want help. Your brother needs to be so close to losing everything before there’s a hope of him looking for and sticking to the rehab. I’m so sorry your going through this :broken_heart:

My sister and a nephew both died with this unfortunately they have to want to help theirselves. Unfortunately this usually does nt happen but please don t stop trying

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All I can say is that you can’t help someone that doesn’t want to be helped unfortunately. He needs to be the one that wants to change.

I dont know much about this but I would be doing the same thing if he was my brother best of luck hope he over come this n pick up his life

Alcoholism is a tough one. When you’re in it’s grip you know it’s not how you want to be but you’ll lie to yourself to keep drinking. Addiction is the most debilitating crutch you can fashion for yourself. I was never “officially” diagnosed as an alcoholic but I know I am. There are still days, almost 6 years later, I’ve sat in front of a liquor store and cried until I could drive away again. I stopped drinking because I got pregnant. I thank God because it gave me a chance to be sober long enough to decide not to turn back. I know that if I so much as have a flute of champagne at a family gathering I’m falling down the rabbit hole again and probably never coming back. I couldn’t even stop for the kids I already had. I was depressed and it was compounding that depression. I hope your brother can find himself again. The harder part will be not going back.

Encourage him to find supports in your area.
Go to some self help groups with him if he is willing to go with you. Celebrate Recovery is a pretty popular one with the clients that I work with. Encourage him to seek counseling or engage in other activities that he enjoys to replace the alcohol. There should be some
Local mental health agencies that might be able to help locate resources in your area and maybe y’all could help him get into his own place and such. . . Good luck to all of you

As the wife and as the mom of those in recovery the addict has to do it for them self or IT WILL NOT work.
It took several times for my both and this was the key step that made the difference in success

The Best help you can give him is just be there when he needs you, its very hard to watch the ones you Love hurt them selves

You should find an ALONON meeting for yourself. It’s for family members of alcoholics and will help you learn how to deal with what you can of your part of the situation.

I’ve been sober for 4 years. When my family cut ties and cut me off I had no choice but to ask for help. I still go to alcoholics anonymous. I’ve made sober friends and I really like it once I gave it a chance

He will have to overcome this own his own time and will. He can achieve this if he is determined to do so. I know. I am living proof.

He needs to go to a sober living facility. He needs to learn to function as a sober person. That’s what it took for my uncle. He went to rehab from there to a half way house then a sober living ranch. He learned to function as a sober person and finally beat the addiction.

When everything else failed I turned to prayer. It’s the only thing that I have seen so far that has worked. Whatever you do don’t enable him and call him out when he lies to you or looks for pity. Just be there when he’s ready to change. He’ll need your support more than ever at that time.

You can’t help anyone who isn’t willing to help themselves…he has to WANT to get better, otherwise you’re wasting your time. My ex chose alcoholism over his own daughter.

Nothing you can do , A person has to want it badly enough to stick with re Han etc and STAY with it , sounds like he’s already had help numerous times .

Unfortunately there is nothing you can do. He needs to make the decision for himself. And you need to make the decision for yourself that his addiction is not for you to worry about or fix.

My son is a heroin addict. And by the grace of God, is 2+ years sober. The years he was in active addiction, I took him anywhere and everywhere, tried anything and everything to help him. And it all failed because I was the one doing it, not him. It wasn’t until we did not allow him to come home from rehab and had no alternative but to go to a sober house, did he realize it was on him to change and decided to do so.

That was probably the hardest decision of my life. And it took me a long time to get there. For years, I thought what I was doing was helping when all I was doing was enabling.

I know you love your brother. And I know how hard it is to watch your loved one go through this. You can still love your brother. You can still have a relation and talk, etc. But you have to set boundaries that the alcoholism is not going to be part of that relationship. You help by not giving him someone to fall back on, to bail him out.

I will keep you and your brother in my prayers. I wish you both the best and hope he does get sober. Please feel free to reach out whenever needed!

Sadly there is nothing you can do… he has to be ready to help himself. I know the struggle all to well because my older brother is an alcoholic as well. Sadly two years ago I cut off communication with him because of his actions while drunk. He has tried to apologize to me and has cried that he doesn’t get to see his family and his nephews. This is something I won’t budge on though. My niece suffered because of his actions, he has no regard for anyone else and I refuse to accept his apologies because like most alcoholics he does not take responsibility for his actions. I would strongly suggest getting yourself into some kind of therapy… the family member who often bears the burdens of situations like this need help even if it’s just talking.

Be honest with him about “your” feelings and concerns. We can be honest w/o being mean. If we are not honest with them about our feelings they will never know.
So many tip toe around them afraid to say anything for fear they will go on a bender. If they do it’s not on you…it’s the disease
It’s ok to say you worry they are harming themselves, or you are afraid or disappointed. Just make sure they know you say it because you genuinely care.
Take it one day at a time

Get you and your parents to Alanon. You nor your parents are responsible for his recovery. Let him take care of himself

I’m sorry we can try and help them all we want but they have to do it for themselves it’s the same with drug addicts

You need to learn the difference between supporting and enabling, b/c if you don’t…you are the one that gets hurt at the end of the day. It will wear you down to the point it will start affecting your life too. Been there done that.

I went through something similar, I’m 61 my brother is 51. He was living with my parents because he lost a good paying job due to him drinking on the job.
He was verbally abuse to my parents, stole money and items, lied so much I think he was believing the lies. My mom was the enabler! My self and my sister ended up having to deal with it. We kicked him out of my parents house shortly after my dad passed away. My brother hit rock bottom finally after several in and outs of rehab and shelters. He is now sober, living on disability, but his health is not good from being an alcoholic. His weight is out of control because he substitutes alcohol for food. Good luck

In the same exact situation, not sure how to go about it, I think he needs to hit rock bottom, and my parents need to kick him out in order to do some soul searching

You can do everything for an addict to try to help them but if they don’t want to change and get help, it’ll never work. Until he wants to quit, all you can do is be there for him.

As a previous level 1& 2 DUI EVALUATOR I would strongly recommend inpatient re-hab for a year. You can’t expect long term treatment in a short term facility also don’t, allow his problems to become your problems. You need to be very firm with him & tell him he needs long term treatment & until he decides to go he will be dead.

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All I can offer is my prayers! I buried my baby brother due to an overdose. But I still believe in prayer!

Your brother needs to help himself, when where how is his decision and when he makes that decision that’s when he will need you to support him until he does that there is simply nothing you can do

We buried my brother in law yesterday at 49 years old due to alcoholism…hope he gets the help he needs asap x

Definitely al-non he can get a sponser and help him thru the rough journey.
You can help him by encouraging him to stay sober but a sponsor is someone that went thru the hardest time and now maintaining sobriety and can help with experience they went thru. A sponsor will be there but if he falls off the wagon the sponser will encourage him to get back to trying.

He has to want the help first . there is no point in helping someone who doesn’t want the help

There is meds he can take to help stop drinking it’s called antabuse. It will make him very very sick if he drinks on it. I’m in recovery. Just not for alchohol

Has he tried getting a shot to help . I’m getting a shot and it has helped me

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You are in a tough spot. Just listen for now When he really wants to quit drinking be there for him. You can’t force him to quit. Just be there

I think a good half way house whee he can go to meetings. Believe all the love in the world will not fix it. He has to get control.

Well I was an alcoholic well should I say I still am but don’t drink, Noone can help someone whom dont want help,When I used to drink I was a a violent drunk, I would fight anyone for no reason this went on for alot of years, When I hit bottom was I remember my mother waken me up nd I was covered in blood but it wasn’t my but at that moment I seen fear in my mother’s eyes she told me one day you’re going to kill someone or kill yourself that was the day I put down every ounce of alcohol over 20 years ago so if the person don’t want help there’s no way of you helping them good luck

As a woman in recovery herself with brothers who also suffer from alcoholism I have some thoughts if you’re interested please feel free to message me.

You cant. He’ll stop when hes ready. That’s the hard part about addiction. All you can do is pray to what ever God you choose.

It sucks but unless he wants help nothing you can do. My dad begged my older brother to quit and he never did and unfortunately it’s to late now cause he passed away in 2017 from drinking.

You can not help him unless he helps himself
Get him to an AAA. meeting. And you go to ALONON

HE HAS to WANT to change and get better. If he doesn’t, then NO ONE can help him. That’s my experience


i will give you some advice that a great friend, gave me, that will save from a lot of heartache and disappointment, it is called AL,A NON , it is a self help group for friends and families of Alcoholic’s, Good luck

You can’t help him until he gets out of his parents house…probably drinks to deal with his parents.

There’s nothing you can do, your brother has to want to quit. If he has enablers he will never quit. I was told by a former alcoholic, he hit rock bottom before he went to AA.

Not your problem he is a grown up when hes ready HE WILL SEEK HELP waste of time been there.

I got a family member that drinks every day to and does not want to listen to no one

you can’t do anything until he hits rock bottom, he has to want it, you can’t want it for him. addiction is cruel but he owns it and he alone has to want to give it up, all you can do is love and support him when he does finally come around. Unfortunately some never do though, hard facts…

if you and your family want to help then stop blocking the consequences of his addition. don’t give him money, don’t believe what he says, if he cannot stay sober kick him out. if he gets arrested do not post bail. only he can can make that decision. it’s not easy. there are support groups online and in person for him and you. Al-anon is one. get your life back. this is damned hard but you cannot guilt him into sobriety.

I would suggest looking into al-anon a support group for people whose friends or family are suffering with an addiction

Has he ever been on the medication where they can’t drink? There is a shot he can get every 90 days or a daily pill.

He has to want it bad enough. Like a soldier who has lost a leg in war wants to walk again. It has to be a burning fire inside of him to quit in order for anything to happen. Nothing you can say or do can light that fire. All you can do is let him know you will be there as soon as the first spark lights.

I’m going threw it to with my fiance he goes to rehab and falls off the wagon.

Why is he still living with parents at his age? Does he work to help them out or just using them to buy his booze? Not married? What’s wrong with this picture?

Trauma work. The Meadows is hands down the best place for this.

You can’t unfortunately. He has to truly want it. :pleading_face:

Has he tired going to a sober living home after rehab instead of straight back to your parents?

Nothing you can do till he sees what’s going on and wants to change

Unfortunately you cant help someone unless they want to help themselves. Most importantly, EVERYONE needs to stop enabling him immediately. Does he have a job? Are your parents letting him live there because he cant support himself because of the alcoholism? Gonna have to do tough love. Make him get out on his own and get a job. He needs to realize his drinking is causing problems but if anyone is softening the effects of it then it’s not going to work because he knows he can rely on his family to keep him afloat.

Following bc my brother has liver cancer and keeps drinking his life away. Dnt wanna have to bury my brother sooner than I have too

You cannot help someone who doesn’t think they have a problem

They have to want the help or its just a wasted effort

He should try going to some A.A. Meetings, find and work with a sponsor.

You can’t unless they want it. Unfortunately it’s that simple.

Well… Only when he is ready to stop drinking will it be time to heal… Until then prepare for his demise. Prepare last will or testament of how or what he’d like. Whether that be ashed or buried. Look into type of life insurance that will help cover all the cost of his debts and burial costs. Sorry the snswer wss morbid and brutally honest. Best wishes in your journey… :mask:

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Your brother has to want it! No one will make addicts do something they don’t want

You can’t unless he actually wants it I tried for years to help my mom it was a no go

Not much you can do until he decides he wants to do it his head has to tell him it’s time

Has he tried any support groups?

You can’t change any addict. They change when they want to change.

Bless you, child. I am 44 and have been in your shoes for about 30 years. I’d like to highly suggest Al-Anon for you. I’m sure there are online meetings right now, and it can only help you. Sadly, you cannot help him. All you can do is love him, and take care of yourself.
And as far as taking care of yourself: Literally saved my life.

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Unless he wants help, you can’t.

Have you thought about petitioning the courts to commit him on a section 35?

Good luck…we tried everything to help my brother he’d quit for a minute then drink again …he ended up passing away from it his heart couldn’t keep up he was in his 40s … I pray that your brother gets help :pray::pray: