Advice on how to respond to this?

Old 09-08-2003, 03:35 PM
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Location: Canada
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Advice on how to respond to this?

Hi everyone,

Please can I have your advice on how to respond to this?

I received an e-mail from A today...he told me he has 2 weeks sobriety and that his feelings about being sober are all over the map-from terrified to euphoric. I want to tell him that I am proud of him and encourage him, but, should I? (keep in mind we are in 2 different countries right now)

Also, my dad passed away in 1996-it was very likely that he had Alzheimer's disease that progressed pretty quickly.

A's dad has just been diagnosed-he is a quite famous surgeon and is now being forced to "retire"-now. A told me he has to put all his energy into helping his dad right now-I agree to the point that he needs to be there for his dad but also has to keep on working on his stuff. I want to tell him that I am here for him in terms of his dad's condition as I have gone through that with my dad but I want to gently warn him to not throw himself into his dad's problem while he has a big one of his own. However, I also realize his dad has only so much time and I know it was hard for me to see my dad change so much. So, how do I be a) supportive of A; b) let him know I will help him with any concerns I can about his dad (from my own experience) and c) let him know that it is totally ok with me that he focuses on his dad versus me but it is not the best idea for him to focus on his dad versus himself?

I feel like I want to write the "perfect" reply. A also said that maybe it is God's will that me and him are apart now, so he can focus on his dad. I would NEVER begrudge him for wanting to spend time with his dad and help him. I want him to know that I do respect his time with his dad (in fact I warned him of how much his dad could change quickly) and that I am going to try to use our time apart productively too.

So, in some ways I am starting wonder if this alcoholic "black and white" all or nothing...focus on "this" or "that"?

Anyway, I am not sure how to respond. I also spent a week at his parents so I have met his dad too. Thanks!
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Old 09-08-2003, 03:58 PM
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Hi Boo.

I see no harm in being encouraging and supportive of his recovery.Just make sure you are working a program of your own.

I worked with Alzheimers people for a few years and it is heartbreaking.It is also important to know that an otherwise healthy person may live for many years with the disease.It is often exhausting for the family caretakers.

He will certainly have his hands full,and I hope there are other family members involved with his dad's care.

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Old 09-08-2003, 04:15 PM
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Join Date: Jan 2003
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God bless you for working with Alzheimer's patients. One of the hardest things I have done in my life is to watch my Father deteriorate from that disease. I often say a prayer of thanksgiving for all of the people who cared for him and helped him along the way. He passed on in 2001, but I considered that his victory over that awful disease.
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Old 09-08-2003, 04:15 PM
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Ditto, no problem with being supportive but make sure you are working your program and taking care of yourself.

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Old 09-08-2003, 06:38 PM
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My thought is that you are less worried about your SO than writing the "perfect reply"

You have gone through this yourself, right? It is terrible.

Maybe just being a sincere supportive friend is what he might need. And if you cannot do that without trying to manipulate, maybe space is what would serve him best.

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