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My friend is a recovering alcoholic and I am worried

Partners, families, children and friends - they all get affected by your drinking.
Charver
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Help with my sister.

Post by Charver » 21 Oct 2011 18:25

Here is the situation, she has been drinking for at least 4 months of what me and my Mother know of, she had twins in March of this year and at first we diagnosed it as them getting her down because she has always been a career person and travels the world. She has ran away from home and us and her boyfriend don't know what to do anymore. This is doing us in, we all feel so depressed.!

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Re: Help with my sister.

Post by Therapy » 21 Oct 2011 18:42

Hi

When you say she has ran away from home, do you mean she's ran away previously and returned, or she has ran away now and you know where she is, or she's ran away now and you don't know where she is? Sorry for the questions, but it will help BE members to give you the best help.

Charver
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Re: Help with my sister.

Post by Charver » 21 Oct 2011 19:05

Therapy wrote:Hi

When you say she has ran away from home, do you mean she's ran away previously and returned, or she has ran away now and you know where she is, or she's ran away now and you don't know where she is? Sorry for the questions, but it will help BE members to give you the best help.
Sorry, she ran away previous got to the airport departures lounge, and we called the police and she returned, we went to the doctors and she was diagnosed with post natal depression, yesterday she was found slumped in her house with a bottle of vodka. today she has got on a train somewhere but she won't tell us where she is . her mobile is switched off.

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Re: Help with my sister.

Post by Therapy » 21 Oct 2011 19:50

Hi, you've a bit of a difficult situation on your hands here. If your sister and her boyfriend have joint bank accounts and or credit cards, then he could check them to see where she has been or is drawing money from the ATMs, paying for hotels or travel tickets etc. As she's been diagnosed with PN depression can you contact the medical profession if she's been seeing them? In truth though I feel that your'e not really left with much alternative than to contact the police to help you find your sister.

Hope you find her safe and sound very soon.

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Boris Bike
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Re: Help with my sister.

Post by Boris Bike » 26 Oct 2011 23:22

Any news, Charver?

Sindy
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My friend is a recovering alcoholic and I am worried

Post by Sindy » 12 Dec 2011 20:04

that they are drinking again,

There have been a few times lately that I have worried about them. I dont know if it is me over thinking things or not,

I find myself watching them and checking up on them, they have been to rehab

i dont know whether to say anything or if I am wrong that I could end up doing more harm than good,

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Oldenough2knowbetter
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Re: My friend is a recovering alcoholic and I am worried

Post by Oldenough2knowbetter » 12 Dec 2011 20:49

Hi Sindy and welcome

What is it about your friend's behaviour that is giving you concern? And how long has s/he been out of rehab? Could you express concern, ask if everything is ok without mentioning that you think they are drinking again and see if they will open up to you as a starting point?

Xx
"Promise me you'll always remember: You're braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think." [Christopher Robin to Pooh]

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Re: My friend is a recovering alcoholic and I am worried

Post by Sindy » 12 Dec 2011 20:52

they have been out of rehab a year, there is a few things that worry me, they are disapearing for about 20 mins a few times a day and i saw a bag in the toilets that i think is theirs and i looked and saw an empty minature bottle in it,

I think I might have to go the route of expressing concern without saying i think they are drinking

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Oldenough2knowbetter
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Re: My friend is a recovering alcoholic and I am worried

Post by Oldenough2knowbetter » 12 Dec 2011 21:15

Hi Sindy

If it were me, I think that would be my first approach. 20 minutes is quite a long time to disappear, are they actually leaving the office building (I assume you are talking about a work environment)? When they return, is their behaviour any different?

I'm no expert but my gut feeling is that directly asking if they've started drinking again is more likely to scare them off, I think you need to tread carefully. I don't know much about relapses but would be surprised if it started with drinking miniatures, I wouldnt have thought that would be enough. People with drinking problems tend to be very devious, I'd be less surprised at a 50cl water bottle being filled with vodka, for instance. But that's just my opinion and my drinking history never extended to the workplace...

Xx
"Promise me you'll always remember: You're braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think." [Christopher Robin to Pooh]

Sindy
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Re: My friend is a recovering alcoholic and I am worried

Post by Sindy » 12 Dec 2011 21:41

I think they are going to one of the toilets in the building, we work closely and they are one of my best friends

I think that is all I can do is let them know I will be there for them no matter what, I am going abroad next week and I texted them to say to start working on their shopping list while I am away and that I will miss them but if they need me i am the other end of a text or email

It is hard to know if their behaviour is any different, I didnt realise over a year ago that they were having problems, I knew something wasnt right but not what

I think I have to tread carefully and then there is also the worry that I have been offloading too much of my own personal woes on them on top of everything they have had to deal with

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Oldenough2knowbetter
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Re: My friend is a recovering alcoholic and I am worried

Post by Oldenough2knowbetter » 12 Dec 2011 21:47

S/he is lucky to have such a caring friend.

For what it's worth, I think you're doing everything right. Hopefully s/he'll open up with a little gentle persuasion on your part.

Xx
"Promise me you'll always remember: You're braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think." [Christopher Robin to Pooh]

Sindy
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Re: My friend is a recovering alcoholic and I am worried

Post by Sindy » 12 Dec 2011 21:53

Thanks for that, I am just scared for them, I never asked them what caused their drinking problem. I figured if they want to tell me they would and if they dont then no big deal

I love them to bits in a friendly way and that is why I am scared for them and have wondered have I been doing the right thing, also one thing I am worried about is that I loaned them money (didnt have an idea they may have been drinking at time)

that is what I am afraid of that if I say something that it could cause them to go off the deep end but then can I bury my head in the sand and ignore it, Then part of me says it is their battle and I cant fight it for them but if I would I could

they are an amazing friend to me, I havent had the easiest of years, family wise, job wise and guy wise but they have been there for me and I just want to do the right thing

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Oldenough2knowbetter
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Re: My friend is a recovering alcoholic and I am worried

Post by Oldenough2knowbetter » 12 Dec 2011 22:07

You ARE doing the right thing. You're absolutely right when you say it's [our] own battle to fight but we all appreciate a bit of support and that's exactly what you're offering.

I think maybe it's time to stop analysing and worrying and have an "are you ok? Because..." conversation?

Xx
"Promise me you'll always remember: You're braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think." [Christopher Robin to Pooh]

Sindy
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Re: My friend is a recovering alcoholic and I am worried

Post by Sindy » 12 Dec 2011 22:12

thanks it has helped me a bit just even being able to talk about it somewhere that nobody knows the person or me, there are a couple of other people in work who know but I just wouldnt feel right talking to them about my friend

that is a problem I have with a lot of things that I analysis things and worry about stuff I cant control

We are going for lunch on fri to exchange christmas gifts so I think I might somehow build it in to the conversation, just have to figure out how to without revealing that I have been watching them

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Oldenough2knowbetter
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Re: My friend is a recovering alcoholic and I am worried

Post by Oldenough2knowbetter » 12 Dec 2011 22:18

Yes, I often worry I'm coming across as gossiping when all I really want is advice or guidance! It's a fine line to tread.

If you're thinking of Friday for a conversation, why not use the time between now and then to see if there are any behavioural changes or "odd" behaviour that you could highlight as a reason for your concern?

Xx
"Promise me you'll always remember: You're braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think." [Christopher Robin to Pooh]

tim29
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Re: My friend is a recovering alcoholic and I am worried

Post by tim29 » 12 Dec 2011 22:25

hi sindy

you are clearly a very good friend

i cannot add anything to the advice you have been given. i think oldenoughtoknowbetter is spot on. personally if you approached me and asked me if i was drinking, i would become very defensive and would back off from the situation very quickly. so do tread carefully.

i think the approach you have decided upon is the right one.

good luck and feel free to post on here at any time

Sindy
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Re: My friend is a recovering alcoholic and I am worried

Post by Sindy » 13 Dec 2011 09:35

Thanks for all your kind words, it is just hard sitting back trying to decide what to do for the best but all I can really do is let them know how special a person they are and that I am there for them in any way i can

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Re: My friend is a recovering alcoholic and I am worried

Post by Sindy » 13 Dec 2011 15:23

Today it seems like she is her old self and you wouldnt know anything had been up, I did see a small empty naggin vodka in the bag beside the empty minature, I dont know they could have been there for a while and maybe she did have a blip and I hope she is ok,

Yesterday before I left she was on the phone in a quiet office for over 35 mins so hopefully it was to a trusted friend who can help.

All I can do is let her know I am there for her in any way I can, She asked for a loan of money today a tenner towards a meeting expense but I said I am broke, it nearly killed me saying no,

I know I have to stop checking up on her and leave her to fight the battle herself, that is so hard as I dont want to see her self destruct,

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Oldenough2knowbetter
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Re: My friend is a recovering alcoholic and I am worried

Post by Oldenough2knowbetter » 13 Dec 2011 15:45

Hi

For what it's worth, I think you were right to not loan the tenner and I think it would be wise not to loan any in the future either. Maybe she wouldn't use it for drink but I'm sure you'd prefer to know that you weren't enabling her to drink.

You are very hard on yourself and there's no need. You're not checking up on her, you are trying to work out if she has a problem or not without going in all guns blazing. As tim29 said yesterday, if you ask her directly, chances are she'd run a mile. And you're not "leaving her" to fight her battle, you want to support her. And in my book, that's admirable and I would be thrilled to have a friend like you in my life.

Personally if I'd had a relapse and was now sober again, I wouldn't have empty bottles in my bag. I would have got rid of them. Distance from alcohol and triggers is important, the last thing I'd want is a reminder.

One suggestion I would make is that when you talk to her, make sure you both have plenty of time in case she does open up. And if possible, pick the end of the day or a time when she doesn't have to go back to work. That way if she gets upset she doesn't have to go back to the office.

Xx
"Promise me you'll always remember: You're braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think." [Christopher Robin to Pooh]

Sindy
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Re: My friend is a recovering alcoholic and I am worried

Post by Sindy » 13 Dec 2011 15:58

Thanks for what you said, I prob am being hard on myself thinking should I be doing more or should I contact her family but unless I have concrete proof I don't feel I can despite what I feel

I just have to keep reminding her she is a worthwhile person as from what I gather alcoholics have low self esteem. And hope I am doing the right thing

I am so glad to have somewhere I can talk about it

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