Advice about my father

Old 01-09-2004, 05:47 AM
  # 1 (permalink)  
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Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: West Plains, MO
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Angry Advice about my father

Hi, I'm a 26 year old woman with 3 (8, 6 and 3 years old) great kids, and a wonderful husband. Dec. 3 2002 my mother left my dad because she couldn't deal with his alcoholism and drug additions and constant compulsive lying, when she did, that seemed to leave me to take care of him. He is or seems mentally unsound and I was so afraid he couldn't take care of himself, I was honestly and truly was afraid he'd accidentally kill himself. I believe he would've, had I not been there the first few months. Those were the real killers. I let him move in with my family and I, and that turned to hell. He stole from not only my husband and I, but even my kids. He gave me his late mother's watch to keep safe, he knew he'd pawn it or sell it for alcohol, and he found it and pawned it, he'd also recently bought me an inexpensive watch and stole that back and did the same thing. That ended up being what I thought was the last straw and I had him arrested. He's on probation for stealing(prior to the watches), and I really figured that the state would deal with him, and I pushed for him to be placed in a facility for mental illness. I spoke with the mental illness hotlines, his probation officer, the court, everyone. I thought I set my mind and heart to let him live however he wanted as long as it wasn't with or around me. After that, he got sober, at least as far as the alcohol goes. yippeee, right? Sort of. He was living with another family member and they were using him (he lives on about $600 Social Security disability from a back injury years ago, and they were taking up to $500), and once again, I felt bad and took him back into my home. I mentioned the drug addiction and lying above, and those are 2 of our main issues now. His lies, which are so wild and far fetched are driving me insane, I'm going to end up going to the Dr. for depression. He'll get in an emotional or mental low point and feel he needs to tell me he's dying of cancer, heart disease, anything and everything to make me feel sorry for him, and as bad as it may sound I don't have sympathy anymore. I have to go to the Dr. with him in order to find out if anything is genuinely wrong with him, monitor his medicines when possible, it's just exhausting to the point I don't care. This past week he told me he had blood clots in his legs that could go into his heart to try to scare me into feeling sympathy. He has such a fear I'm going to just dump him out on his nose that he'll pull any strings. I found out not long ago that the lying has been going on longer than the alcohol and drug addiction. He told us he was in Vietnam and told us the most horrible war, enough to make your heart bleed, and they were completely untrue, he's been telling that for at least 26 years. I've begun just letting him know that we don't believe him, and it's somewhat headed it off, but not much. The pills are a huge issue, 120 vicoden by prescription in 3 days and his Dr. still doles them out like it's nothing, and whatever else he can get wherever else. Even Excedrin, he'll take those by the handful, I guess for the caffeine. I don't even know if his Dr. knows how mentally unstable he is, and what a true addict he is. I do feel he is capable of living on his own now, but he's so latched on to my family and I, I can't even seem to get him to look for an apartment. Right now, the plan is to go next month, sooner if we can get the money together, get him an apartment and literally just move him into it whether he's kicking, screaming or crying. When we went to the heart Dr. for his "blood clots" this week I was looking around at all the other patients with their children, and the children of those patients were my father's age. Not mine. I want and more importantly NEED, my own life again. I don't mean to sound selfish, but I've got these kids that really need the attention and energy he's tapping into whether I want him to or not. He wasn't abusive or mean when I was growing up, it'd be so much easier if he was I think. He was absolutely the best dad in the world, until around 1993 when the alcoholism reared it's ugly head and with it we found a tail of pills and lies. Does anyone have advice on A.) Getting him to curb his appetite for lying...B.) Develop the confidence to live on his own. Something that seems impossible. And an option isn't throwing him out. We don't live in a community with a homeless shelter and he can't live on the streets. C.) Figure out how to get the Dr. to quit doling out this medicine. Is there a way to over ride the HIPPA laws? Thanks for any advice.
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Old 01-09-2004, 06:06 AM
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journeygal's Avatar
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: walking in faith
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Hi and welcome!

Wow, you have been through a lot! I can see you're at the end of your rope and I don't blame you. Living with an active alcoholic and substance abuser is such a draining and stressful way to live.

Well let's see. A.) He won't stop lying until he's ready to stop abusing pills. Active users are incapable of telling the truth, since they will do and say anything to get money or whatever for their next fix. B.) He's using to avoid facing any kind of reality, so him developing the confidence to live on his own isn't likely to happen anytime soon. C.) You might want to call his doctor and tell him about your dad's addiction. I can't believe he keeps handing out those pills!!! I would think he could be charged for doing that, but I'm not familiar enough with the law to know.

I know you say throwing him out isn't an option, but, why not? Why can't he live on the streets? I don't mean to be heartless or cruel. But as long as someone keeps giving him a roof over his head, he has access to money and items to pawn. If he's on the street, it might help him hit his bottom and seek help on his own. There are a lot of people here that have kicked out their A's, and many of them decided to seek help to avoid living on the street.

I know this isn't what you wanted to hear, but your dad won't stop using until he's ready, and the easier it is for him to continue using, the longer he's going to do it. Right now, between the doctor and family members willing to help him out, he's got it made.

I know I'm being harsh, but your dad is in bad shape, and the only way to help him may be to let him go and let him fend for himself.

Please visit the al-anon and nar-anon forums while you're here. A lot of us have been where you are.

Take care and keep coming back,
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