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Busted Grandpa...now what?

Old 11-22-2009, 03:02 PM
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Busted Grandpa...now what?

Hi all.

A few months back -- my grandmother came home to my grandfather passed out -- and lying on the floor. He has a history of moderate drinking -- but in my lifetime he's never gone overboard like this. He's getting older -- has had a history of depression/anxiety and I guess I can't say with 100% certainly -- but I'm sure he is abusing to help lighten his mood. My grandma threw out all the alcohol -- but she does allow him to have one when they go out for a meal.

He comes over to my parents house everyday to take out dog out for a walk over the noon hour. Sometimes I go to their house during that time -- and a couple times I have spotted him in the heavy grove of trees. Immediately, my mind decided he was hiding a bottle of something. Yesterday -- I smelled it on his breath -- and today when he was down there I again saw him walk into the trees at the beginning and end of the walk. I investigated and found a bottle of whiskey hidden under some leaves at the spot I saw him entering and existing the grove.

What should I do? He's 80 years old...doesn't appear to be sloshed ever -- and I'm wondering if it's okay to let him continue this? The easy thing to do would be to turn him in -- but he's old and...well -- I guess I'll wait for the advice.

Thanks!
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Old 11-22-2009, 03:28 PM
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If it were me, I'd throw it out but not expect anything, productive, to happen. In other words, I'd expect him to get another one and hide it in a better place. He's old. He's set in his ways. And he obviously does not want to change. Anyone, who abuses drugs (and alcohol is a drug), has to WANT to quit. You and Grandma can only do so much and gramps will learn better ways to hide it. He may also get angry or resentful that you're runining his "good time". It's a cycle that will repeat itself over and over until he desires to change or dies. Unfortunately.

My own grandfather gave up a 4 pack a day cigarette habit to continue his alcohol abuse. He regularly beat my grandmother and dragged his kids(my mother and her siblings) out of bed at 3-4AM to dance and sing with the music he played. Mom STILL cannot stand "I just called to say I love you". She hates that song so much. Just brings back a lot of horrible memories.
My grandfather passed away in his late 50's. Cancer ate him up. He was alone. None of his kids nor his wife stood by the bedside. They did visit a couple of times. I remember seeing his once. Alcoholism can be very lonely indeed.
Flip side is street drugs, and my family has all kinds of stories. Including me. For another day..
Anyway, getting back on topic, there isn't a whole lot you can do except pray. Hope and pray. When my parents both smoked cigs, I threw away the cigarettes and lighters CONSTANTLY. They'd just go buy more. I'd complain about smelling like crap from the smoke. I'd complain about their health. All that. They just kept at it until they both got bronchitis (sp?) so badly one year that they were hospitalized for weeks. That woke them up and they quit..
Now I smoke cigs.. Go figure..
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Old 11-22-2009, 03:41 PM
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Hi and Welcome,

You can try talking to your grandfather about your concerns. But, he will need to decide for himself that he needs to seek help.
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Old 11-22-2009, 03:43 PM
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Im probably gonna get flamed for this but I personally wouldn't do anything.

Can you believe I just said that? My reasoning is that at 80 years old, your grandpa is probably too old in the tooth to wanna change. Does he still drive? That would be my main concern but if not, let him be. He has no doubt worked hard in his youth, seen things we will never see and is still around to tell the tales.

My stepfather is a happy go lucky functioning alcoholic (seems sober) and we have tried to wean him off more times than I care to remember. At his age, with the length of his habit, his quality of life would be rubbish as his cravings could consume the life he has left.

You can mention it and ask his thoughts on the situation but at 80 years old he may not be too open to ideas and suggestions.

Sorry if I frustrate people with this reply but it is just my opinion, a younger person could change their ways easier or focus energy into something else. At 80 and still functioning and active (walking dogs etc) I would just let them enjoy the few years left on earth. Your grandpa's wife should be a pro at nagging your gp by now so i'd leave it to her to sort him out.

Easier said than done and I appreciate that I do not love these people like you do but, at that age I believe people have paid their dues and have been on the planet long enough to do what makes them happy
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Old 11-22-2009, 08:13 PM
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I'm gonna second Chilly on this one.. I would do absolutely nothing. It's his own business, and none of anyone else's. I would hope that no one would be telling me what I should or shouldn't be doing at any point seeing as how I'm an adult and I make my own adult choices, but especially when I'm 80 for goodness sake!
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Old 11-22-2009, 08:25 PM
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I like the idea of doing nothing.

But-

I also had the idea
of putting a note
on the bottle
saying
Grandpa-I'm afraid for you
please talk to me about your drinking.

wow.


If *I* were to find something like that
it'd freak me out.
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Old 11-24-2009, 09:50 AM
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Originally Posted by barb dwyer View Post
I like the idea of doing nothing.

But-

I also had the idea
of putting a note
on the bottle
saying
Grandpa-I'm afraid for you
please talk to me about your drinking.

wow.


If *I* were to find something like that
it'd freak me out.
WOW! Got a chill from reading that
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Old 11-24-2009, 10:49 AM
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Chilly I thought the same thing.

He is 80, perhaps the note Barb suggested would be a good idea, who knows.

I will say that it is NEVER to late!!!! I was 52 when I finally got sober, I know folks that have gotten sober older then me.

We had an elderly gentlemen who started showing up at meetings, his son brought him in a wheel chair for many months, we never saw him walk and he rarely talked, he sat quietly and listened. He kept looking better and better as the months went by.

Well they were passing out chips at this one meeting and when they said 6 months............. the gentleman forced himself up out of that wheel chair and with 2 canes worked his way up front, he then asked if he could also have his 24 hour chip and months 1-5 as well!! He turned to us all, smiled a smile I have never seen on a mans face before and he simply thanked us all! There was not a dry eye in the room. He passed several months later................ sober!!!!
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