How to help: alcohol and drug addictions

"Our people: we are responsible for each other and ourselves." - Kodiak Alutiiq Cultural value

If you are noticing some signs of addiction in your life or in the life of someone you love and care about you may be asking how can I help? What can I do?

First, remember that the choice to stop drinking or using drugs is ultimately their responsibility. No one can force another person to stop if they don’t want to stop. Helping someone you care about stop drinking or using drugs can be difficult but you can help in a few ways.

  • Let the person know you care about them and that you are worried. Listen to them without anger or judgment – sometimes talking it through with someone else is the best help.
  • Find other ways of spending time together instead of drinking or using drugs. You can hang out with friends who don’t drink or use drugs, go for a run or walk, go hunting or fishing, watch a movie, or listen to music.
  • Talk with a trusted adult like a family member, a teacher, or a youth worker. Talking to someone you trust can be helpful and they may have suggestions on how to help that person.
  • Encourage and support them if they are deciding to stop drinking or using drugs. You can do this by looking for resources or someone in your area who can help. This can be encouraging them to talk with their doctor, a counselor, a teacher, or even a family member.

These are just a few examples of what you can do to help yourself or someone else choose a healthier lifestyle – free from alcohol and drugs. Ultimately, the choice is yours! Remember your life can be more satisfying and fulfilling when your physical, mental and emotional health is balanced. Check out our Other Resources page for some other helpful tools!