Maladjusted?

I am an alcoholic and I need help

with 8 comments

I’m not actually an alcoholic.  My father is.  But these are the words that I have been waiting for him to say.

Let me tell you a little bit about my father – he is in his mid-50’s and slowly killing himself.  His excessive alcohol abuse is damaging his health – he is chronically obese, sufferes from gout, high blood pressure and has been diagnosed with diabetes.  He is also damaging his relationships with his family.

Christmas day 2008.  Since my mother left, I have gone to my father’s house to visit him and my brother and sister, and also to cook dinner (the one year that my dad tried to cook it ended in disaster).  As always, my dad was hideously drunk by 3pm, caused an arguement with my 20 year old brother, where he became physically abusive (picking up a baseball bat at one point – although I managed to disarm him), and verbally abusive towards my younger sister (18).  He was threatening and I honestly felt that my younger brother and sister might be at risk, so I took them to my house (an hour and half drive away) where they stayed for a couple of nights.  That was Christmas.

Christmas 2007 and Christmas 2006 went more or less the same way in terms of his drinking, but this was the first time I had felt threatened by my father. 

And as usual, come Boxing Day when I called him to ‘tell him off’, he was his usual apologetic self – he was sorry and couldn’t really remember what he had done. 

Now, you may think that this post is written in a very factual way – believe me, there is a lot of emotion behind this, but not having lived with my father since I was 17, I perhaps find it easier to take an observer’s viewpoint, and to be a bit more objective than perhaps I could be if I was there everyday.  I am also treating this blog as a form of therapy in a way, as well as a day to day diary of my musings and recipes.

I am very aware that he is very depressed – being made redundant last year, and with his health problems (he is very overweight), and lack of education and training limiting his employment options has not helped this.  Because of his violent temper exaserbated by the drinking he has isolated himself from friends and family and as a result is lonely.

So he drinks.  And so the circle continues.  I am concerned not only for his mental health, but also for the mental health of my younger brother and sister who still live with him.

Believe me when I say I have tried to help.  My mother also suffered from alcohol addiction when I was younger, which changed her as a person into something hideous.  I was with her for most of this period and so have the experience necessary!  Eventually, sadly after burning many bridges,  she finally admitted she had a problem, attended treatment and counselling and changed her life around.

I have helped my father with job application forms, have written him healthy eating plans, have cajoled him, have had stern words with him, and have been there to listen to him.   But I am also very aware that I cannot help him any further until he admits he has a problem.  

I’m hoping that this day will come sooner rather than later, when he can has a chance to save his life.  I’ll keep this blog updated with progress, but if anyone reading this blog post has any advice I would be very happy to hear it.

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Written by Lores

January 9, 2009 at 12:38 pm

8 Responses

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  1. I was an alcohol for 14 years and i was powerless over alcohol and my lives had became unmanageable.After 14 years i accepted all these and joined AA{alcoholic anonymous}and now i am sober since 5 years.The thing is if you want to join in AA.Your father should accept him self an alcoholic.

    Deepak

    January 9, 2009 at 2:03 pm

    • Deepak thanks for sharing that – and congratulations. I will check out your blog 🙂

      Lores

      January 9, 2009 at 2:09 pm

  2. If you have any questions ask me in my blog.

    Deepak

    January 9, 2009 at 2:04 pm

  3. I too have an alcoholic father.

    He has isolated for years. He is antisocial. At the end of his working years, alghough he had a trade, he was unemployable because of his antisocial behaviour.

    He is now elderly in a care home. No access to alcohol so he does not drink anymore. But the behaviours are the same. Isolation. Know it all. Angry at the world.

    I will say, however, that he is finally somewhat beaten by his ways. He is lonely and the only thing that seems to give him joy is when we kids go visit.

    There are 4 of us. I am youngest in my early 40s.

    Alcoholics who have not reached bottom are not likely to ask for help or admit their problem. I am just going by experience. Yet my Dad did in a way eventually reach bottom when he could no longer live alone.

    He is in a better place now. Physically, medically, and amazingly, emotionally.

    We are glad for this small blessing. There was little we could do for him. But we could always be the best peoople we could be and be there to help him with his needs. That way the door is always open for when they are ready to accept help.

    I also know this from my own alcoholism. All the help offered to me in the world meant nothing until I was beaten enough by my alcoholism and finally admitted defeat and that I needed help. Thank God it worked.

    So only suggestion I can make is be the best “you” you can be. It will help you preserve yourself. so you can live the best life possible and not give yourself away. Also, you will have something to offer when your father does finally accept help.

    Until then, the ball is in his court.

    Ciao. Chaz

    http://www.yuppieaddict.wordpress.com

    Chaz

    January 10, 2009 at 8:26 am

  4. Chaz,

    Thanks so much for your thoughtful and sincere comment, I had been thinking along those line, as you said of ‘be the best ‘you’ can be’. I don’t want to lose touch with my father, but sometimes stepping away even for a short while helps get better perspective on the situation.
    I’m happy to hear that your father is in a better place now, and indeed you beat your own alcohol addiction 🙂
    I will check out your blog, and keep this blog updated with progress
    Thanks again x

    Lores

    January 10, 2009 at 12:11 pm

  5. […] is a family history of alcohol abuse, my mother being a recovered alcoholic, and my father  still a very much practicing alcoholic.  So I am well aware of the high tolerance levels that an alcoholic will have, and how […]

  6. Can’t really advise on the alcoholism babes, but as he has a lot of time on his hands now, why don’t you recommend he retrains? I suspect he could access Train to Gain funding (so he won’t have to pay anything) at any local college and do a whole HOST of courses and they won’t cost him anything. There are a list of NVQs for example that he could undertake all of which could help him retrain or begin in a trade. Apprenticeships (not for school leavers only) are also high on the government agenda at the moment so he could skill up and then apply for work – might give him something to focus on. I know getting him to go along will be a hard job, but it might be worth suggesting to him.

    LVO

    January 15, 2009 at 6:30 pm

  7. […] of his bad diet, it it because he is both depressed and stressed, or is it because of years of alcohol abuse?  Most likely a combination of all of the […]


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