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Why Alcoholism Hits the Pocketbook So Hard  

While people may not think of excessive drinking in terms of financial costs, it certainly adds up over time. That bottle of wine there, the case of beer for the Friday after work party, and going out to socialize with work buddies while drinking. These are examples of ways people spend their time with friends and loved ones that involve alcohol. Alcoholism may be out in the open (that person drinks a lot more than they should) or hidden behind closed doors (hiding, secretive, and maybe high functioning to everyone else). Alcoholism has many faces, but the place it hits hardest before people realize it is the pocketbook. Find out what the costs may be and how to navigate the challenges of financial hardship due to a substance use disorder. 

Adding it Up

Over the course of a few years to a decade, people can spend a lot of money on alcohol. They may spend more than they think, especially if they are struggling with alcoholism. What people spend on drinking too much in their lifetimes depends on their habit, where they live, their budget, and other factors. However, Americans may spend approximately one percent of their gross annual income on alcohol, averaging over $500 per year. It is more likely people who have addiction spend more than this, but this ballpark figure helps put a number to the challenge of alcoholism.

Tradeoffs of Drinking Behavior

Even when people calculate spending on alcohol and are mindful of the potential long-term costs, consider whether or not it is worth that money. It may be able to go somewhere else, and maybe money was stolen from college funds or depleted retirement accounts to pay for the addiction. The tradeoff then becomes more about entertainment and goes hand-in-hand with being able to save money or spend it on something that is destroying a person’s life. Debt, low savings, and other issues are common for people with alcoholism and their families also suffer from them. 

Check Spending Habits

People with addiction are not likely to think of spending habits to keep alcoholism going. They will find ways to get alcohol one way or another because they crave it. When it gets to this point, they may not be able to check their habits until they get help. However, it is helpful to talk to a loved one about their spending habits for addiction to alcohol and see if they are able to implement any of the following:

  • Setting a budget for spending on alcohol
  • Tracking spending
  • Going ‘dry’ for a week or more
  • Being willing to give up or stop drinking for longer periods in order to save money and pay off debt

Most people with alcoholism are not able to just stop on their own. They need help. More than a financial planner, they need addition recovery followed up with financial counseling, nutritional support, and more. A person with an addiction can get help and put their finances back on track if they overcome denial and admit a problem exists. When they do this, they are able to seek more help for their addiction and start putting money back in their pocketbooks again.

The Guest House Ocala understands there are different challenges people face in recovery from addiction. Not everyone can move at the same pace or find healing in the same way. We are here to help you navigate the best pathway to healing for you from addiction to alcohol or any other substance. Call us to find out how to get started: 1-855-483-7800