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Thread: Dealing with a friend from college's drug/alcohol addiction

  1. #1
    Senior Member gimmethesimplelife's Avatar
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    Dealing with a friend from college's drug/alcohol addiction

    This is very difficult for me to share. Lately my best friend from my college days has reaapeared in my life but with an active drug/slcohol problem. When I knew him in the 80's he was in AA and had his act together. He and his ex wife even tried fixing me up on dates with men - very progressive at the time though I often questioned their taste in men lol...

    And I'm getting off the point. My friend has an MO. He comes from a bit of money and his Mom recently passed resulting in an inheritance. He will stay in a mid range hotel and drink/use, get evicted after two days, get sent to a hospital from the hotel, get sober/stabilized at the hospital (at Medicare's expense as he's already on Medicare due to another issue - late stage kidney disease). Then he'll check out of the hospital, check into another mid range hotel, and lather, rinse, repeat.

    Yesterday I had a short day at work due to minimuzing holiday pay. I bussed it over to Scottsdale to the Holiday Inn my friend was staying at.....and the eviction process was unfolding yet again. I watched the interaction of the Scottsdale Police, EMT's, and ambulance crew and watched my friend - from a restaurant bordering the hotel property - being loaded into an ambulance. So depressing.

    Clean and sober this is a great person. Drinking/using a liability. I know realistically there is little or nothing I can do here - he has to want help. I post this all to ask - how would you.personally.cope with such? I find it difficult. Rob

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    Senior Member Tradd's Avatar
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    My father was an alcoholic. Got dry through AA after I left for college, but he was a dry drunk. Didn’t drink, but had the same behavior as while drinking. I distanced myself for my sanity and life is much better.

    How to handle it? Have nothing to do with him. Block his phone number and email. You might tell him you’re happy to have contact if he’s sober/not using, but while he’s drinking/using, you don’t want to hear from him.

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    I think Tradd has some good advice. Leaving the door for contact open on your terms will allow you to help him should he decide to meet those terms. Prayers to you and him as it is still a hard situation to watch and not be able to do anything to help - at least at this point in time.
    To give pleasure to a single heart by a single act is better than a thousand heads bowing in prayer." Mahatma Gandhi
    Be nice whenever possible. It's always possible. HH Dalai Lama
    In a world where you can be anything - be kind. Unknown

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    Senior Member iris lilies's Avatar
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    Rob, I am sorry to hear about your friend.

    You know you can’t help him long term in his spiral downwards, you may only be able to prop him up for the moment.so, it is good you didnt get involved in that latest episode of drama. It is good because there is not much point in involving yourself.

    With addition of his mother’s money, he may have a looooooong spiral downwards. This wouldn't be the first time I’ve seen a parent’s large estate pretty much kill the child who inherits.

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    Senior Member catherine's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gimmethesimplelife View Post

    Clean and sober this is a great person. Rob
    Yeah, that's what keeps us hooked into thinking "if I can only save them." Rob, I'm so sorry for your friend. Reminds me of my brother who lived the same kind of lifestyle for decades but through the grace of God he's sober and stable now and in his own apartment. But not because of me or his other caring sibling, or anyone else--with the exception of the VA. The VA has been his lifeline in terms of their facilities, rehabs, transitional housing programs, etc etc. If it weren't for the VA my brother would be dead.

    I would let your friend know you are willing to support him (as a friend) when he's sober, and then walk away.
    "Do any human beings ever realize life while they live it--every, every minute?" Emily Webb, Our Town
    www.silententry.wordpress.com

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    I always recommend AlAnon or Naranon having seen how it helped a friend deal with her daughter.

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    Senior Member razz's Avatar
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    It is heart breaking to see unfold and understand that there is little one can do when it is another's battle to resolve. Sorry to hear this about your friend.
    As Cicero said, “Gratitude is not only the greatest of virtues, but the parent of all the others.”

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    Senior Member SteveinMN's Avatar
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    Can't add anything to the advice here. I have zero interest in that kind of continuing drama in my life from anyone. I'd let him know I'd be willing to help him get sober and stay sober, but I could not support his abusing drugs and alcohol until either he or his money are gone.
    Success is to be measured not so much by the position that one has reached in life as by the obstacles which he has overcome. - Booker T. Washington

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    Senior Member catherine's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sweetana3 View Post
    I always recommend AlAnon or Naranon having seen how it helped a friend deal with her daughter.
    AlAnon is wonderful for family and friends.
    "Do any human beings ever realize life while they live it--every, every minute?" Emily Webb, Our Town
    www.silententry.wordpress.com

  10. #10
    Senior Member Yppej's Avatar
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    Make sure any help you give is not enabling. I would stick to things like giving him rides to 12 step meetings, but even there beware.

    I have done Naranon in the past and addicts are very manipulative. Our state at the time had a stupid law that a person could not be admitted for treatment unless they tested positive for drugs and some of the drugs do not stay in the system long. So there were parents whose kids would say I am going for treatment but to get admitted I need to get high, and would have the parent drive them to pick up drugs, inject them in the back seat of the car, and then refuse to go for treatment.

    It is easier I think with a friend, sibling or significant other (I had an SO) than a parent or child. I really felt for those poor parents.

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