Support available from your employer
Counselling and Time off Work
If you're worried about your drinking and want to speak to someone in confidence about how to get help, or if you want some time off to get better, your employer will in most cases have a written substance misuse policy which will support you to achieve this.
Although it may feel very difficult to be honest with your employer, the substance misuse policy of the majority of organisations make it clear that they will offer support to employees who require it. Seeking support from your employer's EAP or Occupational Health team will not jeopardise your job - it will provide you with the support and advice you need to understand your drinking better and hopefully resolve the issues you need.
Having a conversation with your line manager
On the whole (and we have spoken to many managers), most managers would rather you were honest about your drinking, than kept quite about it. They may be worried about your drinking and are hoping you will raise it. Some may raise it first with you as a concern if it affects your work.
In addition, most employers will allow employees to have time off to help overcome an alcohol problem. They have procedures in place for you to see the Occupational Health team or your GP to be assessed and to allow time off. You may want some time each week to see an alcohol counsellor, or a complete break for a few weeks.
Alcohol counselling and support can be very helpful and evidence shows that for those people who do start alcohol counselling or treatment of some kind, the majority stop drinking for good and the success rate is high.
Counselling for alcohol problems is available everywhere and can be face to face, over the phone or by skype. It is confidential and if this has been arranged via your EAP, the only feedback from the counsellor to the EAP is whether you have attended - everything else is confidential.
Types of support from your employer
Some employers will have an occupational health team and even an employee assistance programme. They can advise you on how to contact an alcohol counsellor and help you with any further support you may need. Your GP can also advise you on the alcohol counsellign options near you.