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Old 08-12-2009, 12:29 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Mother going into treatment facility - need advice


Hi everyone,

1st post here on SR, so please bear with me if I posted this in the wrong forum (wasn't sure which was most appropriate).

On Friday my mother will be going into an month long inpatient program for alcoholism. She's been an alcoholic for nearly 20 years, and has been in treatment once before (Nov. '08) but relapsed after 2 weeks.

My questions for you are: what can I do leading up to treatment to help her? What can I do during treatment? And what should I do to prepare for her return?

Essentially, what could your immediate family do for you that would aid you in your recovery?

Thanks in advance!
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Old 08-12-2009, 12:37 AM   #2 (permalink)
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hi alwaysalways

I have no experience with your situation, but I know some here have.
Others should be along soon enough

Welcome to SR!
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Old 08-12-2009, 12:46 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Hmm. There's a fine line there. On one hand, I wouldn't want my family to be judgemental, calling me a loser alcoholic in rehab . But then on the other, I wouldn't want them to be overly or artificially enthusiastic/supportive about me turning things around. Somewhere in the middle.
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Old 08-12-2009, 12:59 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Hmm. There's a fine line there. On one hand, I wouldn't want my family to be judgemental, calling me a loser alcoholic in rehab . But then on the other, I wouldn't want them to be overly or artificially enthusiastic/supportive about me turning things around. Somewhere in the middle.
Thanks Matt.

The fact is that I'm so relieved/ecstatic that she's made the decision to seek help that I probably err on the side of enthusiastic, though it is genuine.

Admittedly, I can be and have been somewhat judgmental when she has been drinking. I suppose it's my own defense mechanism, making me feel better for that little instant.

She's said to me multiple times in the past couple of days, "Well, now you get peace and quiet for the next month." My response has always been that my problem has never been with her. My problem has been with her drinking.

Do you guys think that that is the right response?
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Old 08-12-2009, 01:00 AM   #5 (permalink)
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hi alwaysalways

I have no experience with your situation, but I know some here have.
Others should be along soon enough

Welcome to SR!
D
Thanks for the warm welcome Dee!
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Old 08-12-2009, 01:02 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Welcome to SR

Just be there for her. When I came out of rehab I was a little 'out of touch' with the real world because id been in the 'safe' environment of the clinic for so long. Gently does it I guess is what im trying to say.
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Old 08-12-2009, 05:41 AM   #7 (permalink)
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My questions for you are: what can I do leading up to treatment to help her? What can I do during treatment? And what should I do to prepare for her return?

Look for support and help for yourself, there are good supports networks out there. Al anon for example for the families of alcoholics. You will be better able help your mother only when you help yourself. We all get sick in the family where there is an alcoholic. The alcoholic has more chance of recovery if family members get help for themselves. They will learn to stop putting there own lives on hold,where they learn not to enable the alcoholic . you will learn to love your mother in a healthier way and not at the cost of getting sick yourself. The treatment centre may be able to help you in that direction.. wish you all the best..
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Old 08-12-2009, 06:35 AM   #8 (permalink)
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My family was very supportive, encouraging, and vocal about by rehab success.

I felt comforted knowing they were there for me.

Be there for her, visit on family day, be positive, positive, positive.
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Old 08-12-2009, 06:38 AM   #9 (permalink)
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As Nelco said, I will second, go to Alanon and read up on enableing and codespendacy. We alcoholics are far from being the only victims of our drinking, not only do we need to recover, but our friends and family do as well.
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Old 08-12-2009, 06:47 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Let her guide you... Give her space... Listen.

I was in rehab for 2 months... For me, letters from and to my wife and kids and close friends were very important, very. My wife came up on family days, the high point of my week.

And as everyone said... get some insight as to what it means to be codependent with an alcoholic.

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Old 08-12-2009, 05:26 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Thank you all so much. I do understand that I'm certainly at risk for codependency. Something that I didn't mention is that my father passed away from colon cancer 2 years ago when I was 17, so I was the one who took care of him, as my mother wasn't always "there."

Admittedly, I've tried to remain stoic. It's just easier for me to not talk about things, which I know probably isn't helpful for my long-term health.
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Old 08-13-2009, 12:49 AM   #12 (permalink)
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((alwaysalways))

Have compassion, she is ill. Offer lots of support and encouragement. But, most of all offer love. Never give up hope.
Stay strong.
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Old 08-13-2009, 12:59 AM   #13 (permalink)
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I strongly suggest you find a local Al-anon group
for yourself. It a free resource for those who
love alcoholics.

And ...we do have a Forum here....check out
Friends and Family of Alcoholics

Friends and Family of Alcoholics - SoberRecovery : Alcoholism Drug Addiction Help and Information

Blessings to you and your Mom
Welcome to SR....
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Old 08-13-2009, 01:06 AM   #14 (permalink)
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First off i agree with nelco and Taz, you should get support for yourself too, it will do no harm to introduce yourself to the other sections outlined below and there is no shame in it. Drinking does affect all the close family members and what you went through with your father is a huge thing too. Anyway i hope you do that:-)

Hmmm on the question on what to do when your mother comes out of rehab, well there is not a thing you can do to ensure that she does not drink again, that is all down to her. Even if you drove her to AA meetings, read out from the Big Book, tried to get a sponsor for her etc...that would be her passing all responsibility for her recovery onto you so that if she fails than you can share the blame. So i would do nothing whatsoever save make a cup of tea when you normally would and let her get on with it, and be there as you normally would.

You are also not there as an emotional dump for her, this you will, i think, hear a bit more about in the other sections on SR. That is what a counselor is for, see the problem is if i choose to dump all my **** on you, where do you go to dump yours and, now, mine?

If you don't find the information in the other sections (i'm certain you will find many people to help you here) then, if you have the number of the treatment centre, you could ring and ask to speak to one of the staff and ask them the same questions that you asked below:-)

Plese go and check out the other sections, and keep posting, they will have real life experience of what you are going through rather than from us alcoholics point of view.

Your mother is a very lucky lady to have you, that's for sure!
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Old 08-13-2009, 06:22 PM   #15 (permalink)
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My family was very supportive, encouraging, and vocal about by rehab success.

I felt comforted knowing they were there for me.

Be there for her, visit on family day, be positive, positive, positive.

I think tommyk just fully put it the way it should be.
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Old 08-13-2009, 06:55 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Hi and Welcome,

I think the best thing you can do is to focus on what you can do for yourself during this time. Your mother is lucky to have your support. You can check out our forums for Friends & Families on this message board and you will find information and support.
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Old 08-14-2009, 01:02 AM   #17 (permalink)
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Thanks everyone for your support! I most definitely will be taking the time to finding the support I need and figuring out what is best for me moving forward.

I must say this hasn't been easy. The last two days she's been constantly intoxicated. We leave in 9 hours to go to the treatment facility which is just over an hour away. Of course I'm nervous that she won't end up going through with it, and I'll certainly breathe a sigh of relief as I drive away, though I realize that this is just the beginning.

Again thank you all for your support and words of encouragement. It's been a tremendous help.
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Old 08-14-2009, 03:24 AM   #18 (permalink)
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Alanon and read up on enableing and codespendacy.
agreed...

and try to be available for her...

no more, no less...

good wishes for you both...
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Old 08-14-2009, 03:38 AM   #19 (permalink)
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The last two days she's been constantly intoxicated.
Part of the insanity that alcoholism brings, even though I knew my drinking was killing me and I sought treatment, I stayed extra lit right up until I went into detox........ who knows, that last bender may have finally filled my tank, I need nor want anymore!

The insanity for a drink was still there stronger then ever when I got out of detox, but with the support of the AA fellowship I stayed sober long enough for the program of AA, the 12 steps and my HP restored my sanity and lifted my obsession for alcohol.
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Old 08-14-2009, 06:07 AM   #20 (permalink)
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Best of luck to all of you!!
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