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-   -   Advice on alcoholism (https://www.englishforum.ch/family-matters-health/102447-advice-alcoholism.html)

Meisie 26.12.2010 23:11

Advice on alcoholism
 
I have a very close friend who is an alcoholic and has been one for about 10 years.

He will go for months without touching a drop but then the urge gets too strong and he'll go out and get totally plastered. So much so that he once thought he had mortally wounded someone in a fight (turns out he didn't). He also once blew CHF 60,000 in one night at clubs and bars and could not remember how. He gets crazy when he is drunk, a completely different person to who he normally is.

For years I (as well as others) have warned him of his problem. He refused to take any advice (did try AA once but said it didnt help him) and I have finally accepted the fact that the only way he is going to get out of this is for him to hit rock bottom and lose everything and everyone who loves him.

It happened again this weekend and he has finally admitted to having a problem. He doesn't know how to deal with it. I don't know what advice to give him. He comes from a family full of raging alcoholics and substance abusers so it's something that hard-coded into him.

Any advice I could pass on would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.

Mowvich 26.12.2010 23:24

Re: Advice on alcoholism
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Meisie (Post 1054217)
I have a very close friend who is an alcoholic and has been one for about 10 years.

He will go for months without touching a drop but then the urge gets too strong and he'll go out and get totally plastered. So much so that he once thought he had mortally wounded someone in a fight (turns out he didn't). He also once blew CHF 60,000 in one night at clubs and bars and could not remember how. He gets crazy when he is drunk, a completely different person to who he normally is.

For years I (as well as others) have warned him of his problem. He refused to take any advice (did try AA once but said it didnt help him) and I have finally accepted the fact that the only way he is going to get out of this is for him to hit rock bottom and lose everything and everyone who loves him.

It happened again this weekend and he has finally admitted to having a problem. He doesn't know how to deal with it. I don't know what advice to give him. He comes from a family full of raging alcoholics and substance abusers so it's something that hard-coded into him.

Any advice I could pass on would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.

If it's something in the family, it could be genetics....there's some studies regarding that http://www.psych.umn.edu/courses/spr...alcoholism.htm

vlad_island 26.12.2010 23:25

Re: Advice on alcoholism
 
Does he have a family? How old is he\she?

Meisie 26.12.2010 23:28

Re: Advice on alcoholism
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by vlad_island (Post 1054225)
Does he have a family? How old is he\she?

Yes he has family. I am good friends with them and we have gone through this together. They have tried interventions and a whole list of ways to help him but to no avail.

He is 29 years old.

vlad_island 26.12.2010 23:39

Re: Advice on alcoholism
 
Does he have a job? Can he function normally in his private life when he is not consuming alcohol?

vlad_island 26.12.2010 23:40

Re: Advice on alcoholism
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Meisie (Post 1054227)
Yes he has family. I am good friends with them and we have gone through this together. They have tried interventions and a whole list of ways to help him but to no avail.

He is 29 years old.

When you say family you mean parents or partnet and\or children?

zymogen 26.12.2010 23:40

Re: Advice on alcoholism
 
I would suggest to go to the 'Hausarzt'. To get a check-up and assistance on where to go to for long-term help.

swisspea 26.12.2010 23:44

Re: Advice on alcoholism
 
Alcoholics anonymous, is one of the few programmes that I have heard does actually work for some people.

Otherwise, understanding more about alcohol and how it affects the brain (depression is a big factor with alcohol withdrawal)... will help you to understand what is going on for him...

Really, unless you've been there, it would be pretty hard to know what can help - guilt, embarrassment and shame, defensiveness, consequences of poor decision making, affect on friendships, ability to work, finances...it's a minefield...

There must be detox facilities and support organisations in Switzerland.

Meisie 26.12.2010 23:47

Advice on alcoholism
 
(I'm not able to quote as I'm responding via the tapatalk application on my phone which does not have this feature)

Yes he has a job and his private life functions normally when he's not consuming alcohol.

No, he is not married and does not have children but has siblings here on CH.

He does not want to go to a doctor... He wants to be able to heal himself without medication.

AbFab 26.12.2010 23:57

Re: Advice on alcoholism
 
Alcoholism is a disease.
He will never be cured.
The only solution is to never drink alcohol again.
This will not be possible until he has grasped this.
Sometimes alcoholics can achieve this alone,
sometimes they need help...

panda 27.12.2010 01:17

Re: Advice on alcoholism
 
it is often the sober people that suffer for the actions of the drunk.... I had an alcoholic partner for a number of years and it tore me apart, the stress was incredible. I couldn't stand to suffer or watch someone that I cared about do that to themselves any longer and ended the relationship. I now feel much better, brighter, happier and swear I look younger.

You can't help this person unless they really want to help themselves, until they do I suggest you take a step back as caring for someone who doesn't properly care about their own problem will just drag you down.

Sorry to be brutal, but I learned this the very, very hard way

slammer 27.12.2010 01:29

Re: Advice on alcoholism
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Meisie (Post 1054236)
(I'm not able to quote as I'm responding via the tapatalk application on my phone which does not have this feature)

Yes he has a job and his private life functions normally when he's not consuming alcohol.

No, he is not married and does not have children but has siblings here on CH.

He does not want to go to a doctor... He wants to be able to heal himself without medication.

Sorry Meisie it just won't happen and as the others say: "never to be able to drink again." is the only answer, that you can only do with a heroic willpower, thing is alcohol targets and destroys just this ability, there can never be just "the one", same with smoking either you are a smoker, a non smoker or a ex-smoker.
Trust me on this the only way for you is to distance yourself and not get emotionally involved or you will be dragged down, sorry:(

slammer 27.12.2010 01:33

Re: Advice on alcoholism
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by panda (Post 1054263)
it is often the sober people that suffer for the actions of the drunk.... I had an alcoholic partner for a number of years and it tore me apart, the stress was incredible. I couldn't stand to suffer or watch someone that I cared about do that to themselves any longer and ended the relationship. I now feel much better, brighter, happier and swear I look younger.

You can't help this person unless they really want to help themselves, until they do I suggest you take a step back as caring for someone who doesn't properly care about their own problem will just drag you down.

Sorry to be brutal, but I learned this the very, very hard way

My ex'es new husband has a massive drink problem, and I have seen her go from a bubbly bird-brained super-blond to a bitter and cynical old woman in a few short years.

biff 27.12.2010 01:52

Re: Advice on alcoholism
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by slammer (Post 1054268)
My ex'es new husband has a massive drink problem, and I have seen her go from a bubbly bird-brained super-blond to a bitter and cynical old woman in a few short years.

That's very sad.

Texaner 27.12.2010 03:01

Re: Advice on alcoholism
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by AbFab (Post 1054239)
...He will never be cured.
The only solution is to never drink alcohol again...

Quote:

Originally Posted by slammer (Post 1054266)
Sorry Meisie it just won't happen and as the others say: "never to be able to drink again." is the only answer...

I beg to differ. I was once a falling-down, blacking-out mess. My friends routinely told me of drunken "exploits" for which I had no recollection (but few, if any, of these "friends" even suggested I should stop). Fortunately I never had the credit to spend vast sums of money during such episodes.

After trying many times to quit on my own, and realizing I couldn't, I eventually got help. But although I've since gone "cold turkey" for years or months at-a-time, I've also resumed drinking at first, very cautiously without ever returning to anything resembling that awful former state. So while I suppose "never drink again" is the only way for some, I'm living proof that it's not an immutable, universal rule for all.

SwissPete 27.12.2010 05:26

Re: Advice on alcoholism
 
He will never quit unless he decides that he wants to quit.
Then he will seek help. It could be from a doctor, a psychotherapist, AA, whatever.
Whatever his first choice of help may not work, but eventually he will find a solution.

Good luck to him, and to you. Eventually he will realize that you do care.

jrspet 27.12.2010 05:41

Re: Advice on alcoholism
 
Detox is the first step in any treatment program. I've seen side effects ( withdrawal symptoms ) with a close family member participating in a program ( Oz ), but in the long term the gain is greater ( and rewarding ) than the pain.

The best method of treating alcoholism in the world amounts to little if he does not want to quit drinking and if he does not follow the treatment protocol.

As he has tried to some extent in the past, perhaps this Detox center in Horgen / Zurich city ( www.arud.ch ) might be a good place to consult with.

Their PDF in DE also states that treatment is recoverable through health insurance.


PS: I was surprised to discover amongst OECD nations, the Swiss drank more than say the Aussies.

SimonHicken 27.12.2010 11:05

Re: Advice on alcoholism
 
Hmmm I think labelling him an alcoholic is maybe a bit too strong, as you say he can go for months without touching a drop, whereas an alcoholic cannot function without, or go for a couple of hours without consuming alcohol as they are totally dependant on alcohol - doesn't sound like your friend. True he does have a problem with knowing where to stop when he does start partying - a solution could be limiting the amount of cash he has with him or has access to when he goes out.

It seems to me he has more of a conscience problem then a drinking problem. Also it is really easy to spend 60 grand in clubs in switzerland, especially if you are in a group.

Getting plastered every now and then is not alcoholism in my opinion but just stupidity.

slammer 27.12.2010 11:11

Re: Advice on alcoholism
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Texaner (Post 1054294)
I beg to differ. I was once a falling-down, blacking-out mess. My friends routinely told me of drunken "exploits" for which I had no recollection (but few, if any, of these "friends" even suggested I should stop). Fortunately I never had the credit to spend vast sums of money during such episodes.

After trying many times to quit on my own, and realizing I couldn't, I eventually got help. But although I've since gone "cold turkey" for years or months at-a-time, I've also resumed drinking at first, very cautiously without ever returning to anything resembling that awful former state. So while I suppose "never drink again" is the only way for some, I'm living proof that it's not an immutable, universal rule for all.

Exception to the rule Texaner. To do it that way you need a almost superhuman willpower. Most don't

Sada 27.12.2010 11:28

Re: Advice on alcoholism
 
Wow, that's quite some story.

So he started at around 19 to go wild and ten years after he finally hits rock bottom. Probably won't make a difference either. One can even get used to hitting rock bottom.
I think he has all the chance in the world to stop this and start a new life if he wants to but he needs an awefully good and very strong reason for that.

If he is fascinated by his lifestyle, you talk to a wall.
As soon as he feels good again and he's got the means for it, there's nothing you can do about it, he's back into it all all over again and again.
Nobody's circumstances are ever fully identic so you won't know really for sure what will be the trigger to stop this nor what was the trigger to get it all started.

It's brutally tough.

Quote:

Originally Posted by Meisie (Post 1054217)
I have a very close friend who is an alcoholic and has been one for about 10 years.

He will go for months without touching a drop but then the urge gets too strong and he'll go out and get totally plastered. So much so that he once thought he had mortally wounded someone in a fight (turns out he didn't). He also once blew CHF 60,000 in one night at clubs and bars and could not remember how. He gets crazy when he is drunk, a completely different person to who he normally is.

For years I (as well as others) have warned him of his problem. He refused to take any advice (did try AA once but said it didnt help him) and I have finally accepted the fact that the only way he is going to get out of this is for him to hit rock bottom and lose everything and everyone who loves him.

It happened again this weekend and he has finally admitted to having a problem. He doesn't know how to deal with it. I don't know what advice to give him. He comes from a family full of raging alcoholics and substance abusers so it's something that hard-coded into him.

Any advice I could pass on would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.



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