Person with back to partner, asking themselves, "Why do alcoholics lie?"

Why Do Alcoholics Lie?

Addiction can make people act out of character, even when they know it is hurting those closest to them. So why do alcoholics lie and blame others when it only worsens the situation? Understanding why addiction leads to lying can help you practice patience and compassion with your loved one. With this new mindset, you will be in a better place to encourage them to seek an addiction treatment program.

At Promises Brazos Valley, we know how hurtful it is to have someone you love lie to you or blame you for their addiction. Call 979.426.0086 to discuss our alcohol addiction treatment options and how we can help mend your relationship and rebuild trust through family counseling.

Why Do Alcoholics Lie and Blame Others?

Alcohol addiction can lead to irrational, unbalanced, and unhealthy behavior patterns, such as lying and blaming others. There are several reasons that a person struggling with alcohol addiction may be dishonest:

Avoiding Stigma

Although there are movements aiming to break down the stigma of addiction, that stigma still exists. Some people assume that those with alcohol addiction are irresponsible, lazy, or selfish. They are ignorant of the fact that alcohol use disorder is a chronic medical condition that requires nonjudgmental compassionate treatment.

Avoiding Consequences

Alcohol addiction could sometimes threaten a person’s livelihood, so they may lie to avoid losing their job. They may also lie to their partner if given an ultimatum of quitting drinking or ending the relationship.

Regaining a Sense of Control

A person addicted to alcohol may feel a loss of control since they cannot manage their alcohol consumption. They may try to compensate by controlling others around them instead.

Shielding Their Loved Ones from the Truth

People with difficulty controlling their drinking may not want to worry their family members, especially those deemed more vulnerable, such as young children or ill or aging parents.

Serving as a Coping Mechanism

Lying and placing blame on others is sometimes used to cope with the underlying guilt and shame accompanying alcohol addiction. These feelings affect the person’s self-worth, and they may not seek help because they feel undeserving of recovery.

Denial of a Drinking Problem

Some people who drink excessively do not see it as a problem but, instead, view alcohol as a means of relaxing after a stressful day or celebrating the weekend.

As you can see, there are many reasons why alcoholics lie and blame others. This behavior does not always come from a malicious place but is a sign that the person is struggling and trying to cope with this challenging condition.

How Should You Handle Lying from a Loved One with Alcoholism?

Dealing with lies and blame from someone you love with alcohol addiction can be challenging and frustrating. Here are a few tips to help protect yourself from mistreatment while remaining supportive:

  • Understand the behavior – Lying is typical among those with alcohol addiction. Still, it is essential to realize that it is not a personal attack on you but rather a symptom of the disease.
  • Do not enable the behavior – Enabling lying allows the other person to continue their addiction.
  • Encourage honesty – Encourage your loved one to be honest with you and themselves about their addiction. Let them know you are there to support them and not judge them.
  • Set boundaries – Set clear boundaries with your loved one about what behavior you will not tolerate. 
  • Seek professional help – Encourage the person to seek help from an addiction treatment program. It may also be helpful for you to seek the assistance of a support group for friends or family members of people with alcohol addiction.

Dealing with a loved one’s alcohol use disorder requires understanding, setting boundaries, encouraging honesty, and seeking professional help.

Promises Brazos Valley Addiction Treatment Program

Anger is a natural response to being lied to by someone struggling with alcohol addiction. But it is not helpful for you or them. Instead, find the support you need at Promises Brazos Valley. We can help your loved one overcome addiction while mending your relationship through our family therapy program. Contact Promises Brazos Valley today at 979.426.0086 to learn more.

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