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opinions on non-alcoholic beer please?

Old 12-13-2010, 10:50 AM
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opinions on non-alcoholic beer please?

My dad was forced to stop drinking in June (2010), because he was found by his girlfriend, largely incoherent, with a minor head injury, suffering from alcohol poisoning; after he had spent three weeks on a binge. She had been gone overseas and left to his on devices, he drank continuously for the three weeks and ate almost nothing. He lost 20 pounds, had some sort of liver failure, and gashed his head from a fall somewhere in the house.

He was taken to the hospital where they put him on some kind of drug which I guess weaned him off the alcohol, they fixed up his head, got some nutrition in him, and also found they needed to remove his gall bladder.

He went to rehab when released from the hospital for 28 days.

He refuses to go to any meetings or go to counseling, because he can "whip it on his own."

He has been a drinker since high school = he's 73 now.

Fast forward to Thanksgiving.

He and the girl friend (who I like very much - she doesn't replace my mother but is a nice friend to have) - arrive at my house for festivities with "non-alcoholic" beer for their beverage of choice. I did not plan to serve anything even remotely like alcohol in deference to his condition.

This stuff looks like beer, tastes like beer, smells like beer, and comes in a bottle that looks like a beer bottle.

Would you say that this is a good beverage of choice, given his refusal to go to meetings or counseling of any kind, or am I still in the angry stage of my confrontation of his illness?
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Old 12-13-2010, 11:16 AM
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Old 12-13-2010, 11:27 AM
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This question comes up here quite often. I really wish they would make a stickie thread out of the best one so we could just refer people to that.

Most people here feel that non-alcoholic (actually, most contain 0.05% alcohol) is a bad idea because it's flirting with disaster. Many feel it will cause them to crave the real thing. Most say they drank beer to get drunk and not because the especially liked the taste. Of course, those people should definitely stay away from it.

On the other hand, there are those who will have a N/A brew occasionally. While it doesn't taste exactly like beer, it's close enough that it satisfies wanting that beer taste with certain foods, etc. I am one of those people. I would never suggest anyone try it if they were in the least bit fearful that it could cause them to crave the real thing. That has never happened with me and I have 2 1/2 years sober. I don't drink it that often; in fact, I haven't had any in a couple of months but do plan to purchase some soon.

In other words, it's a very personal decision.
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Old 12-13-2010, 02:30 PM
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Originally Posted by Heiress View Post
Would you say that this is a good beverage of choice, given his refusal to go to meetings or counseling of any kind, or am I still in the angry stage of my confrontation of his illness?
I wouldn't drink it, and many on SR would agree with it being a poor choice for a non-alcoholic beverage. But it isn't beer. And as far as I can tell from your post, he's hasn't been drinking since June. Correct? Good for him.

I'd say you are still in the angry stage, and probably rightly so. If your father drinks, it probably won't be an NA beer that tips him over the edge.

Good luck.
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Old 12-13-2010, 02:49 PM
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My bigger concern is with his refusal to work a program of recovery (and instead just to focus on will power).

NA beer is not great for people who are "white-knuckling" their sobriety. But, with that said, if he is only drinking it for a holiday gathering to "fit in" - then, while not ideal, it may be ok.
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Old 12-13-2010, 02:55 PM
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Respectfully and in my opinion, it's not your thing to worry about. It's his recovery or not, and it sounds like he'll do what he wants anyway. I'd suggest you take care of yourself, and try not to worry about that grown-a$$ man's decisions. His inventory, his life, his decisions.

Having said all of that, my wife's treatment center considers it a bad idea and it's on a list of things to avoid that she's been given (and right now she fears relapse so much she follows the list like Mormons follow The Book of Morman). I'd add that I'm certain I'd spin up into a gigantic conniption fit if I ever saw her drinking "non-alcoholic" beer or wine. It would set off every f-ing controlling thing about me, as well as push all my fear buttons, and the outcome would probably be pretty ugly.

Easier said than done for me.

Take care,

Cyranoak
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Old 12-14-2010, 11:17 AM
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Thank you. Dad's "recovery" to me is still very much a thing in progress - and I'm really not ready to believe that his do-it-yourself method will work. Everything I have read so far says it won't. Though, yes, he has been sober (he says) since June.

I don't live nearby and don't intend to be his caregiver. I knew very little of what was going on because he is non-communicative. Though I am listed in his "living will" documents as the one in charge (of three daughters), I won't find out anything until it's an emergency.

I never had the opportunity to speak to his doctors or anyone associated with the rehab because once he was cleaned up and on medication in the hospital he was coherent and making adult decisions (hence there was no reason to bring me in). So - he only told me what was absolutely necessary for me to know.

I fear that once the support of the girlfriend is absent (what if she has to travel again for three weeks like last spring?), things may go downhill fast.
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Old 12-14-2010, 11:23 AM
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Well, to be fair, and nothing at all against AA, many of us here managed to get and stay sober without using AA. So, I don't think it's really fair to assume that just because he isn't using AA that he's not serious about recovery. As I said, I have a little over 2 1/2 years sober and I didn't use AA and I didn't see a therapist or work any particular program. Some people are able to do that and maybe your father is one of them.
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Old 12-14-2010, 11:53 AM
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I agree with Suki.

I think people get far too focused on the alcoholic 'not working a program.'

6th year for me and having a drink is the last thing I want or need.
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Old 12-14-2010, 05:25 PM
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Heiress,
My post of "Trust yourself. You know more than you think you do." was not to be my pinhead answer to your question. It is what determines the kind of life that we want for ourselves and makes us responsible for ourselves. Trusting yourself is a process that you discover as you grow through life.

One of the ways you can build self trust is by trusting your feelings and hunches. Trust your intuition in life.

You wrote "He and the girl friend (who I like very much - she doesn't replace my mother but is a nice friend to have) - arrive at my house for festivities with "non-alcoholic" beer for their beverage of choice. I did not plan to serve anything even remotely like alcohol in deference to his condition." "This stuff looks like beer, tastes like beer, smells like beer, and comes in a bottle that looks like a beer bottle." "Would you say that this is a good beverage of choice, given his refusal to go to meetings or counseling of any kind, or am I still in the angry stage of my confrontation of his illness?"

You have your own answer inside of you to your question.

Take a look back into your past life experiences and analyze the reasons why your inner self answered your question the way you answered it that way.
"My dad was forced to stop drinking in June (2010)......" "He was taken to the hospital where they put him on some kind of drug which I guess weaned him off the alcohol......" "He refuses to go to any meetings or go to counseling, because he can 'whip it on his own.'" "He has been a drinker since high school = he's 73 now."

Finally, listen to what your body is saying to you. Be aware of what is going on in your own body. Your body will tell you when you have anger, guilt or resentment built up.

There's an adage in AA that says "You are powerless over people, things and places".I believe your dad's use of non-alcoholic beverages is like "dancing with the devil"!

Just my personal opinion! Take what you like and leave the rest.

Love and Peace,
Phoenix
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