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Parents drinking

(9 Posts)
kittykittybangbang Tue 01-Sep-09 16:11:46

Just have to get all of this off my chest and have a bit of a rant about parents. I think that both of my parents are now alcoholics.
For a couple of years now my dad has been an alcoholic and this has had a massive impact on their finances, jobs and relationships.

My mum cannot cope with it at all and her reaction has always been to blame his childhood, job, even the medication that he takes for his heart. She always has a date for when he's turning a corner and one of them was when my son was born. She thought that if I let my dad babysit then he wouldn't drink and that he would enjoy being a grandad so much that he would forget about drinking.

Surprise, surprise this did not happen, I didn't really want him or anyone to babysit because I don't really go out and he has never shown any interest in my baby. However, my relationship with my mum, which has never been great has really soured as she accuses me of keeping my son away from them.

Her rantings have gone increasingly crazy recently and I've found out that she has become my dad's drinking partner since he lost all his friends. She looks so ill lately and I've just found out that the doctor is very worried about her heart.

I feel like I've done all I can to speak to them about their drinking but I just get so much grief from them. But, it is breaking my heart to see them destroying themselves. Sorry for the long rant!

AttilaTheMeerkat Tue 01-Sep-09 18:03:05

Your Mum has enabled her husband further by becoming his drinking partner. She has also made excuses for him. This is all enabling behaviour on her part (many people in these situations end up becoming the alcoholic's enabler) and this will ultimately help no-one let alone her own self.

I would recommend you talk with Al-anon as they can help family members of problem drinkers. You need real life support for your own self. They are helpful and can advise you further (they also publish helpful literature).

You are ultimately not responsible for these people. You can only protect your own self and your own family unit here.

These are the three c's with regards to alcoholism:-

You did not cause this
You cannot control it
You cannot cure it

ADifferentMe Tue 01-Sep-09 18:05:02

Sorry to hear this - can only suggest you get support from AlAnon. They will help you learn to handle this and take a step back. The best thing I learned (about DH's drinking) was not to take responsibility for him.

Best of luck - sure someone will be along later with better advice.

kittykittybangbang Tue 01-Sep-09 20:43:56

Thanks for your replies. I find it really hard not to take responsibility for my parents' drinking. One parent with a problem is hard but now that the both of them are in this situation I just feel like they are two totally different people.

Often I do feel as if I haven't helped as my mum has told me that my dad blames himself for an incident when I was molested as a child as it was his friend. Even though I have long got over this my mum always cries over it when she's drunk. She has said to me that I caused a lot of problems for them by telling them. Although I know in my head that this is not my fault, I can't help but wonder whether she has a point.

Snorbs Tue 01-Sep-09 21:07:04

It is downright appalling that your mum would even imply that what happened to you is a cause of your father's drink problems. You didn't cause them any problems. Your father's friend did. It sounds like both your parents are trying to make themselves out as victims of what happened to you as an excuse to get pissed. It's not your problem.

Your parents' alcoholism is their responsibility and no-one else's. Nobody is sitting there forcing booze down their throats.

I would very much recommend that you don't talk to your parents if they've been drinking. It's rarely worth talking to a drunk alcoholic at the best of times.

chosenone Tue 01-Sep-09 21:35:14

Aww Kitty big sympathies with you. See my post on here regarding drug addict brother! sad but I agree is downright appalling that your mum said dealing with the abuse incident caused them problems! You have done nothing wrong, and you should have told them they're your parents. My Ex Boyf was an alcoholic and is sister had been abused and he used it as a good excuse to drink and wallow in self pity! AlAnon worked for him in the end and he said alcoholic's are self indulgent and selfish, sadly this is what your parents have become. Maybe your mum couldn't cope with your dad and fell into alcoholism? I had a chat with my brother today and tried to pull him out of his self indulgent wallowing. I put the focus on him, his choice, his life etc I went down the line of on your death bed will you look back on your life and be happy with the choices you made. However, in reality he will use me as an excuse to get "out of it" now... I'd be honest with them about how you feel, offer to help then stay away when they're drunk, sorry you're going through this

kittykittybangbang Wed 02-Sep-09 10:54:48

I've had a look at al-anon and due to my circumstances I can't attend meetings, they're not at very convenient times.

However, I've found some podcasts on the al-anon website which I will listen to. I would like to talk to someone though, does anyone know if there are any helplines that are useful?

TheMolesMother Wed 02-Sep-09 14:23:50


Try this website:

The people there are alooholics/recovering alocholics/relatives of alcoholics and may be able to put you in touch with someone.

Good luck,


Snorbs Wed 02-Sep-09 15:51:11

The friends and families section of Sober Recovery is also very good and a great source of support and advice.

It could also be worth having a chat with your GP for any local services and/or a referral for one-on-one counselling. I attended Al-Anon for quite a while (my ex is an alcoholic) and did get a lot out of it - not least the knowledge that there are lots of other people out there embroiled in the same drama - but I think counselling did more good for me.

It might also be worth getting hold of a book called "Co-dependent No More" by Melody Beattie. That book can really help you to get your attention off of someone else's drink problems and onto more important things. Any of the various books that help you deal with toxic parents could be good, too.

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