Alcoholism is a debilitating disorder that affects over 107 million people worldwide – but those who grapple with alcohol addiction are not the only ones who suffer at the hands of this disease. Spouses, children, siblings, parents, grandparents, friends, or even coworkers can be negatively impacted by someone else’s substance abuse and struggle to cope with the burden. Being unable to stop a loved one from their destructive behavior can result in those caught in the periphery to take on feelings of guilt or shame.
Al-Anon Family Groups was created to serve as a support group for those affected by an alcoholic family member or friend. In addition to helping alcoholic-adjacent loved ones cope with the stress of a family member’s disease, it also aims to teach members how they can be a positive and helpful member of the family unit. Research has shown that alcohol abusers face higher odds of successful recovery when they are supported by family, making this not only an effective way of dealing with a stressful situation but also playing a pivotal role in resolving the issue itself.