Trying to help my alcoholic friend but not getting anywhere

Posted , 7 users are following.

Im not a drinker but I have a very close friend who has finally decided they want help to give up on drinking. But the big problem is that he refuses to go into Rehab. My friend use to drink 9 litres of cider a day and he did give up on that and went on to larger cans of skol which are very weak. My friend weaned himself of them and didnt have a drink for some time. Lately though his drinking has crept back up and id say he is on 16 possibly more cans then that a day by topping up and its not good. I am the only friend he has and no one else will suport him as his ex friends are alcoholics too and he doesnt speak to them anymore. He saw his GP today and his GP has told him there has been cut backs with the NHS and he cant give him any medication to give up drinking, he advised him to wean of the drink again. But i dont think that will work to be honest since he ended up back on the drink. I believe my friend should go into Rehab but i cant make him since he refuses. I think he has a big fear about Rehab underneath as he can be very self distructive and negative once the drink has touched him but at the same time I know he wants to give up but doesnt know where else to turn. He has been to an AA group before but he said that did nothing for him. What other help is there out there for people who want to give up drinking? Thanks

1 like, 21 replies

21 Replies

  • Posted

    The toughest aspect of this disease is that the person has to be really into changing or nothing will be accomplished.  If we, and I use we because I also have a HUGE problem with alcohol, are told that we have cancer, we would be ready to accept chemo right away.  If we have a problem with asthma, then we carry an inhalor.  But when we have a problem with drinikng we do not want to change.  And it sometimes takes something fairly drastic to happen before a change occurs.  The luckiest thing I have had happen to me recently was a fairly bad event which has put me on the straight and narrow.  I did not go to rehab and I have not been to any AA meetings.  I am doing this on my own because I want to change.  But I do have to say this, I am just finishing my fourth month of sobriety and I have been thinking about beer, whiskey, and bloody marys a lot recently.  It is extremely uncomfortable and I know I cannot even be tempted, but the flesh is weak...  lol  I know I got off topic and I know that I really said nothing but the bottom line is that if he does not want to stop drinking, and is going to make an effort, then nothing really can be done to help.  Good luck!
    • Posted

      Yes I understand where your coming from. I know he wants to change but at the same time he has hugh fears about everything especially when it comes to things like rehab. He is very good at making excuses after excuses when it comes to drinking. If I nag to much about his drinking yes he does get annoyed and it probably makes him drink more, but other times he tells me how much he hates the fact that he has a drinking problem and wants help so bad. Ok slightly of the subject. 10 years ago i use to be a heavy drinker but I wouldnt class myself as an alcoholic back then. I use to drink 5 bottles of red wine a night with a friend who was an alcoholic and I do remember waking up every day rattling for me drink. But at the same time, the drink was making my health suffer in other ways because I have epilepsy and I use to drink on top of my medication back then. My sezuires was that bad that i knew I had to give up drinking which i did without any support or help. Ever since I have never touched a drink again. But still till this day my epilepsy has suffered so bad that iv needed treatment and had to have my medications changed many times. Later down the line I will be having brain surgery too and this is all down to my own heavy drinking I did for a year 10 years ago. Thats my own fault but its done with now. This is why i choose to help my close friend but yes only he can be the one to help himself if he is serious to give up and there is only so much I can do, but I cant force him at the same time
  • Posted

    Have you thought of going to UNITY or CADAS.

    UNITY can help with medication etc and CADAS will help with counselling.

    He doesn't have to go into rehhab to get help

    These organisations are very good and give sound help and advice.

    He/she has to refer themselves and commit.

    If they don't want to commit you sre wasting your time and effort, it has yo come from them.

    • Posted

      I will certainly look into it and let him know. Thanks for letting me know x
  • Posted

    Hello Wanda, I am appalled to hear that a GP has said that. It is absolute nonsense. The cost to the NHS will be far higher if your friend carries on drinking excessively and begins to suffer the serious health problems that can cause. I can tell you that there has been NO directive not to do alcohol detoxes in the NHS so his GP is lying to him, if he/she has said that.

    I understand your friend's reluctance to go into rehab. I will send you a link to an article I wrote which will explain why. The same goes for AA which helps some people but doesn't work for others. I won't post the link here because it will then need to be approved by moderators and that will delay my response to you.

    He really does need an alcohol detox to get him started down the right road. He must NOT attempt to stop drinking without medical help. His GP ought to know that the majority of people who are physically dependent on alcohol cannot wean themselves off, it is seriously difficult to do that without the consumption creeping back up again.

    Good on you for sticking by him, we all need friends like you smile Check my private message to you smile

    • Posted

      Thanks for letting me know paul. Yes i believe his GP lied to him tok and was totally useless. Thanks for offering to send me a link ☺☺
    • Posted

      Alcohol detox is available in some areas. It is not normally that the GP will not do the prescription, but that there is nobody to support the patient. This often results in the GP prescribing doses of Librium which are way too small and don't prevent alcohol withdrawal symptoms. Then the GP decides that the patient has a bad attitude to stopping when, in most cases, the patient has only had another drink to combat withdrawal symptoms which are dangerous.

      With alcohol misuse responsible for a LOT of health problems, it is time that GPs were properly educated about alcohol problems and their treatment.

    • Posted

      Im based in preston which is the lancashire area and there is loads of support groups, but as iv said before my friend seems to be uncomptable to be able to go to them. I have been looking under the catorgory of Homeopathic Remdies and they have become very popular for people over here and there the natural drugs which can be taken for any sort of problems whether its physical, mental and emotnial. They even do remedies for people who suffer with withdrawl symptoms of alcohol. But the slight problem with that is that your not really ment to drink on top of these remedies as alcohol cant stop them from working. So that would br a waste of time. I take them every day including a certain one to keep my liver clean since my own medications for epilepsy can damage you liver very easliy too. Homepathic Remdies never cause any form of side affects and I give them to my own kids for different things and they have always worked on them. Doctors agree with Homepathic Remdies but then again, many Doctors out there dont have a clue about them nor do they believe in them. But Doctors dont seem to know that many of the prescribed drugs what are given out to people these days can cause more damage to your system then what natural drugs can do and natural drugs was well out before all of this medication was prescribed over here. 
    • Posted

      There are homeopathic remedies for various symptoms of alcohol dependence but there is no substitute for ordinary prescription drugs (benzodiazepines) to make an alcohol detox safe and comfortable. Using homeopathic medicine, you would need to reduce alcohol over time and that is far too difficult for many people because the alcohol level tends to creep up again while they are trying to do this.

      I certainly think homeopathy has its place but it can't replace some drugs.

    • Posted

      Homeopathy drugs are not as regulised. Drugs like Valeria do not agree with some.

      Regulations are not high

      I may be wrong! X

    • Posted

      Spelling mistakes in my post.

      Homeopathy drug are not regulated.

      Valerian makes me ill.

      I agree treat the whole body but as Paul said you do need medication that only a GP can prescribe.Please listen to Paul - he is the best person to advise you, he is talented with this type of problem x

    • Posted

      Thanks for the compliment Linda smile Yes, alcohol detox is way too dangerous to do without the correct drugs and support.
    • Posted

      I agree with you totally there. Even though my friend is on 16 cans of larger if not more then that other days. Yesterday he was quite ill with a possibly flu bug coming on and he couldnt even hardly keep 3 cans down. He just didnt feel like drinking at all which is good in 1 area, then again in another area its not as i know it can be very dangerous doing that if his withdrawl symptoms go worse which they can do in his part. But at the same time I know this doesnt mean he will stop drinking just like that as I have mentioned again to him that he should go down the correct route by going into Rehab. But he refuses so there isnt much else I can do

      Besides my close friend mainly having myself in his life, he does just have 1 family member left which is 1 of his uncles and he is an alcholic too. So that doesnt really help much either. His uncle tends to drink 4 or 5 cans of super brews at night and a full bottle of vodka at night with his wife. He doesnt drink during the day because he has to drive over to see his nephew most days and even myself has seen how my friends uncle has been when it comes to rattling for a drink. His hands are shaking that bad that I even ask myself how the hell does he manage to drive like that. The negative part about all of this is that my friend seems to believe or will make excuses that his uncle is a worst alcoholic then himself just because he drinks spirits and super brews and only himself drinks weak larger. To be honest. Thats the worst excuse I have ever heard

       No matter what any alcoholic drinks nor how many units they need a day to stop themselves from rattling, it doesnt matter what kind of alcohol there on. But thats just the way my friend can be

    • Posted

      Yes Wanda, I am not sure why he thinks it is relevant what his uncle drinks, compared to him. Finding someone 'worse than yourself' doesn't help to solve your problem.

      Also, the people who succeed in getting off alcohol are not the ones who have the 'least serious' problem. They are those that want to do it  the most and have a decent level of support and a treatment plan which works for them.

  • Posted

    Oh dear..

    Please tell your friend. It doesn't matter what anyone else drinks, you are poisoning your body along with them.

    Let me tell you what happened to me.

    I lived happily in my upstairs flat, new neighbours moved in, wanted all the garden. Loud music, drugs.

    The wife left and then things became dangerous,

    he was drunk 24/7. Police, Environmental Health

    were involved. The music, verbal abuse, banging on the ceiling

    Now one afternoon there were four people downstairs ,, after maybe an hour I thought I would Lie downI went unto the bedroom and could smell smoke.

    Being nosy I thought who was having a bonfire... ...

    No... Smoke was pouring out of the window of the flat downstairs. HE HAD SET THE BEDROOM ON FIRE. I had to try and get my dog and two cats out.

    He degenerated if that's the word. I moved.

    He was found on the floor after lying there for two days maybe by a neighbour. Hw was admitted to hospital and he has alcohol dementia.

    Oh I have seen him from afar but he is not in this world. This is your future.

    I don't know why I am telling you this as you don't care about yourself so you likely won't listen to me.

    You need to grab your life and sort it.

    If you don't want to give up drink then please walk away from your friend.. She deserves better.

    Thank you if you read this, that's a start x

    • Posted


      great story. That must have been difficult to live thru. Fire is one of the most horrific of all things to cope with in apts./flats.

      ur probably right about W not listening to UR story or that the alcohol dementia could be next. They never can think it will ever be that bad for them..or that they can quit any time it's generally the denial factor.

      sometimes they become scared as they should.. But without appropiate clinical alcohol counseling program like Paul has experience with, helping those seriously ill some never accept or seek good quality alcohol treatment. 

      That always bothers me . Don't they think there lives are worth whatever it takes to be well . A life is a terrible thing to waste. Life is a gift. Beg borrow money for drink then do the same to get well!

      my story is here too. And most of all my intentions r as your to open their eyes to see that alcohol not only effects their own life & health dramatically but innocent by-standards & other family members as well.

       THANKX for sharing UR story.


    • Posted

      My friend has started to cut down on the drink if not wean himself of the drink since he has been to see his GP this week. But I noticed that he had been doing it far to quick and fast. From having 16 cans a day if not more, he only had 3 the other night and felt ill all day. Yesterday he had 4 and will quite ill again and i would say this is certainly withdrawl symptoms. With my friend not having much money i had bought him some cans and told him he needs to cut 1 can down a day and do it like that. He agreed with me and thats what he has started to do. But at the same time I know and he knows that if he keeps to this plan, then he cant touch 1 drink after that because he will be back at square 1 again. This is exactly what happened last time and he needs to look at the root of the problem on why he does drink and find another way to deal with it on a psycological to keep of it like seeing some councellor. But whether he does that is another story sad
    • Posted

      Plz see treatment for this disease. As long as he suffers the toxic effects of withdrawl, this could be a unsuccessful relapse. He needs medication as Paul,has mentioned.,there r many available it one doesn't help then other meds can. There r meds that can block the cravings in the brain so he it less set up for failure and counseling is of the utmost importance all these together with every ounce of energy & fight will help for a successful outcome. He needs to understand why he drinks, learn his triggers and follow a program designed for his personal needs. This in turn will help him adjust to life without alcohol.

      this will give him the best option for over coming his addiction to al.

      Some day my son too will fight to find sobriety.

      Once he stops drinking he must protect his QUIT with every ounce of strength he has left!

       HOPE4CURE confused

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