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How can we help our loved ones manage their consumption during the holidays?

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Many people think about their alcohol consumption once the holiday season is over, according to Anne-Élizabeth Lapointe, general director of Maison Jean-Lapointe.

Radio-Canada

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The holidays often mean celebrations, but for those dealing with alcoholism or other substance abuse problems, Christmas can be a challenge.

A long message from Bloc MP Denis Trudel published on the social network X (formerly Twitter) sparked numerous reactions on Wednesday. The post, in which he highlights his 30 years of sobriety, has been liked more than 2,600 times and has once again reignited the conversation about alcohol consumption, particularly during this time of year.

Hi, my name is Denis. I am an alcoholic and drug addict. December 27, 1993 was the most important day of my entire life. It was the day when, overcome by suffering, I finally made the decision to stop consuming all substances that alter behavior, he writes.

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In an interview on the radio showMidi info, the MP for the Longueuil–Saint- Hubert explained what motivated him to write this publication.

Before, I couldn't find reasons to tell everyone, but now I'm a public figure. I've been 30 years [sober], and it's changed my life. I know a lot of people are struggling with this issue and might be inspired by my message.

The Holiday Season is also a period when opportunities to consume abound. For some people, it will be difficult to resist, and for others, they will decide to take shelter, says Anne-Élizabeth Lapointe, general director of Maison Jean-Lapointe.

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At Maison Jean-Lapointe, there are currently 25 people who have decided to spend the holiday season there, she specifies.

Taking charge of themselves is the greatest gift they can give to themselves and their family

A quote from Anne-Élizabeth Lapointe, general director of Maison Jean-Lapointe

However, she noticed that the majority of people with substance abuse problems seek help after the holiday season. After New Year's Day, people will call us more.

As for Denis Trudel, he remembers having hesitated to stop using just before the start of the Holidays, but he says he said to himself: S' I have to spend Christmas and New Year's Day away from my family to deal with this problem, I'm going to do it.

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Denis Trudel, Bloc Québécois MP for Longueuil-Saint-Hubert (Archive photo)

During his first year of abstinence, he remembers avoiding several parties. I did other things to avoid possibilities where I could have relapsed. And it worked for me.

Ms. Lapointe particularly wishes to warn those who are experiencing their first end-of-year holidays in sobriety: If you think you're at risk, go to a meeting, have coffee with friends who are also abstinent, and avoid dinners with alcohol.

If you are entertaining loved ones who are beginning their sobriety process or if you suspect that one of your guests has a substance abuse problem, Ms. Lapointe suggests putting places all the winning conditions to receive them safely.

For example, this can mean ensuring that you have drinks that do not contain alcohol, in addition to having the responsibility to accommodate the person if they are in need. drunkenness.

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Anne-Élizabeth Lapointe, the general director of Maison Jean-Lapointe (Archive photo)

The general director of Maison Jean-Lapointe is however aware that it can be difficult to intervene with these people. They don't necessarily want to be confronted. Most of the time, they are aware [of their problem], but they are also in denial.

The latter also points out that it There is still stigma against people who do not consume alcohol.

We still see that we disturb others, she notes. There is still a way to go in terms of accepting people with drinking problems.

The 28 Day Alcohol Free Challenge is notably one of the occasions to talk about it, she concludes.

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