We all probably have that one friend that takes things too far when drinking. Many of us have been through the uncomfortable feeling of not knowing what to do when our friend passes their limits while under the influence. It’s difficult to reason with someone who is intoxicated and not willing to listen. So, how can you help? And when is it appropriate to speak up?

Once the person is sober, it would be a good time to sit them down and have a talk with them about your concerns for their health. Most of the time, we avoid having this talk in fear of ruining the relationship we have with our friend. There is a point where we need to get over the awkward hump of worrying about them being angry if we truly care about their wellbeing.

Take a look at these steps to help your friend with an alcohol problem in an approachable way

First: Spot the signs. Look at their behavior after they have drank.

Do they remember anything the next day?How was their emotional state when they were intoxicated?Were they defensive when you talked to them about drinking too much? Do they deny it?

How can you help them without them disliking what you have to say?

• Talk to them when they are sober and express your concerns.

• Tell them the effects that drinking has on their life and the people around them.

• Listen to what they are saying and be polite and reasonable.

• Talk about options and solutions to help them (have some options ready to show them some ideas).

• Help them decide on an action that they can take while keeping in mind that the goals would need to be realistic in order for them to work.

• Try doing other activities on the weekends with them that don’t involve drinking.

• Be a role model (do not do anything you wouldn’t want to see them doing) Resources on campus through WADE (Wellness, Alcohol, and Drug Education program) located in Campion 231.

WADE gives ideas of 21 Memorable things to do on your 21st Birthday .

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