Gateway: How to Have an Open Conversation About Alcohol & Drug Addiction
With the holidays fast approaching, many people are
heading home to spend time with family and loved ones. Unfortunately
for some people, the chance to enjoy the holiday season may never come.
DID YOU KNOW?
The night before Thanksgiving has become one of the biggest drinking
nights of the year, if not the biggest, and it’s often referred to as
“Drinksgiving” or “Blackout Wednesday.” The nicknames behind the night
reveal a scary truth – the night before Thanksgiving is one of the
deadliest nights of the year.
According to statistics from the Illinois Department of Transportation,
there were 2,960 crashes in 2016 over Thanksgiving weekend. This is a
sharp increase from the 1,940 crashes that occurred around Christmas.
The night before Thanksgiving is the biggest bar night of the year and
many people engage in binge
drinking before getting behind the wheel. Even if an
individual does not drink and drive that night, drinking heavily can still lead to many
consequences. This makes it all the more critical to have an open conversation about alcohol and
drug use. If you suspect someone is struggling with a substance use
disorder, now is the time to talk to them.
Tips on how to have an open conversation without turning it into a
the conversation in an open, caring and supportive frame of mind.
Open, compassionate discussions with individuals with substance
use disorders always lead to better outcomes.
sure that they understand you are coming from a place of support
and not judgment.
what you are going to say. Since this can be an emotionally
charged conversation it can be helpful to script out what you’d
like to say and go over it beforehand.
and respect what they have to say, too. It may help the individual
face up to the problem. Even if your first attempt to address the
problem is not successful, it does not mean they did not listen to
sure you have a plan ready. If the person is ready to get
treatment, it is a good idea to have a specific program and
treatment center in mind.
ABOUT GATEWAY FOUNDATION Since 1968 our goal has been
straightforward: help clients get their life back on track and achieve
a life of sobriety, free from drug use and symptoms of mental illness.
A life that is productive, socially responsible, and healthy. Gateway Foundation is the largest
nonprofit treatment provider in the U.S. specializing in substance use
disorders for men, women, adolescents and clients diagnosed with
co-occurring mental health disorders. Gateway's professional clinicians
support over 6000 people a day to successfully complete treatment by
developing a personalized plan to treat the underlying causes of
substance use disorder —not just their addiction to drugs or alcohol.