When an alcoholic relapses, it means that they have returned to drinking alcohol after a period of sobriety. Relapse is a common occurrence during the recovery process and does not necessarily mean that the person has failed. It is important for the person to seek help and support to get back on track with their recovery. They may need to re-engage in treatment or attend support groups such as Alcoholics Anonymous. Loved ones can also offer support by encouraging the person to seek help and avoid enabling behaviors. It is important to approach the situation with compassion and understanding rather than judgment or blame.