Help Overcoming Fear of an Alcoholic Relapse

As I was growing up, I saw my mother (the alcoholic) relapse on many occasions. This for sure created a fear in me during the times when she was sober that she was going to relapse again. Thank God she finally got into AA and remained completely clean for over twenty years before she died.

There are certain ways of dealing with the actions of an addict that will greatly help to calm our nerves. It was during the time when my ex-wife was going full blast in several addictions that I finally learned how to cope with the many fears that were directly related to her alcoholic behavior. Prior to learning these methods, I was literally a basket case.

There are several things that helped me more than anything else during those difficult times of living with an alcoholic. The first was when I learned that I had no control over the addicted person’s choices to drink or do drugs.

The second fear reliever came through establishing a relationship with God. Both of these worked great in my life to reduce the anxiety associated with someone suffering from an addiction.

The third one was learning about what to expect if the problem drinker does start drinking again. Finally, it is also a good idea to have a personal plan of action in place if they fall of the wagon.


Let’s Look At Letting Go of the Illusion of Control

One of my favorite questions to ask is; “has anything you have said or done made the alcoholic quit drinking?” When we think of all the things we have tried, the truth of the matter is that nothing has caused them to quit. Now, just because the alcoholic wife, child or parent has made a decision to get sober, this does not mean that we have any control over their choices to start drinking again.

Somehow living with the attitude that “maybe they will” and “maybe they won’t make it” helps in dealing with the fear. The thing is though, just having that attitude alone doesn’t work very well. When we connect it with having faith in God that is truly when the fear of an alcoholic relapse dissipates.

How Faith Eliminates Fear
Here’s is the key, once I reach the point in my relationship with God that I know without a doubt that whatever happens in this situation “I am” going to be OK, the fear disappears. This is why so many twelve (12) step programs work wonders.

When we just get honest with God and say; “Hey, if you are real I need help,” things begin to change. When we are sincere in saying “that” it turns the tables and gives God permission to help us and He does.

As we continue to seek to know him, HE reveals his existence in miraculous ways. That’s when the little faith we started with turns into mountain moving faith. As we let go of trying to control the alcoholic and start trusting in God to help, the fear leaves us.

There is another thing that will help you deal with the fear of an alcoholic relapse-It is being educated as to what to expect if a relapse happens. I learned through the experience of my mom relapsing that when they decide to drink again, they go right back to where they were when they quit. When I quit drinking and started attending AA meetings, I understood what they were talking about when they told me if I decide to drink again, I would go right back to where I was before I decided to stop.

The main thing we all have to remember when dealing with an alcoholic is that we have no control over their choices to drink or not. When we start letting go of them and begin to form a life of our own again, things will get better.

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