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Topic: Alcohol reliance

10 posts, 0 answered
  1. LeeA18
    LeeA18 avatar
    135 posts
    12 August 2018
    My now ex-boyfriend has spiraled into depression and has admitted to me that he has been drinking a lot. He seems quite lost and, although I can’t fix him, I’d love to here ways that others have helped a love one stop drinking. He has pushed me away but we still talk via text and phone and he does listen to me. I am unsure of how much support he is getting as well.
  2. Philll
    Philll avatar
    1 posts
    12 August 2018 in reply to LeeA18

    Hi , it is always hard to hear about people we care about not doing so well .

    I have lived this scenario with family members in the past , can be quite frustrating , just have to be consistent in your caring message if possible and not accept responsibility for their behaviour - it is theirs to change

    If he is willing to get any help there are a lot of services available .. go via the local state government website - search mental health commission perhaps or call your states alcohol and drug services for guidance .If he is not too keen on getting help then perhaps involve other people who care for him so you can all get on the same page to encourage / support him .... share your thoughts and concerns with people you love , most important that you care for yourself as well

    1 person found this helpful
  3. geoff
    Life Member
    • Awarded by beyondblue for providing outstanding peer support to the online community over a period of 3+ years.
    • A member of beyondblue's blueVoices community
    geoff avatar
    13475 posts
    15 August 2018 in reply to LeeA18

    Hi LeeA18, thanks for posting your comment just wondering if you are still checking your comment for replies.

    Thanks.

    Geoff.

  4. LeeA18
    LeeA18 avatar
    135 posts
    15 August 2018 in reply to Philll

    Hi!

    thank you so much for your advice. I’ve saved some of the Government information about it. Once he starts to feel like he can talk to me more about it, I will be able to point in the direction of him getting some help. The first step of him admitting that he has been drinking a lot is huge. I was proud of him for confiding in me about this. But I felt like I handled it wrong. So now I will be better prepared next time.

    I cant thank you enough!

  5. geoff
    Life Member
    • Awarded by beyondblue for providing outstanding peer support to the online community over a period of 3+ years.
    • A member of beyondblue's blueVoices community
    geoff avatar
    13475 posts
    16 August 2018 in reply to LeeA18

    Hi Lee, that's an enormous statement by him to admit he has been drinking a lot, that's his first step but he has to know why it's happening and it maybe depression as you have mentioned where he will need help with this.

    I wanted to reply to your comment a few days ago but there were unanswered posts on page 1 that needed to be replied to, I'm pleased I wrote down the title of your comment as well as your name.

    By realising he is drinking a lot may slow him down, however, as soon as his depression becomes more demanding so will his drinking, that's what happened to me.

    Can I ask you 'why you have handled it bad', that's not fair to you because it's a rather difficult situation.

    Hope to hear back from you.

    Geoff.

  6. therising
    Valued Contributor
    • A special award for members who go above and beyond to support others here on the forums
    therising avatar
    1487 posts
    16 August 2018

    Hi LeeA18

    You sound like such a thoughtful caring person, to want to make such a positive difference in your ex-boyfriend's life. He is fortunate to you so invested in his well-being.

    Personally, I was somewhat of a heavy drinker throughout my 15 year battle with depression (which ended over a decade ago). Having been on both sides of the fence, I recognise my alcohol dependency as a self-medicating thing. Changing the chemistry up there, through alcohol, can be a wonderful form of escapism but in depression it becomes a bit of a catch 22, seeing that alcohol is well documented as being a depressant. It's a cruel cycle. When my brain finally changed for the better, I suddenly stopped drinking altogether at that point and actually couldn't even stand the smell of alcohol. Weird! I choose to change my brain, through alcohol, only a few times a year nowadays. And as a mum who has experienced the traps of depression and alcohol in my younger life, my kids are well educated on the importance of managing overall well-being (body, mind and spirit). Finding balance between the 3 is definitely a management thing.

    The reason I mention my experience is because the depression aspect of your ex's issues might be the thing to address first, more-so before the drinking side of things. Perhaps the core issue isn't necessarily his dependency on alcohol so much as it is about the dependency on a way to change his brain chemistry. Wondering if you have suggested he get onto the BB forums, if he wants to feel support whilst remaining anonymous. It could be a good way of him gaining support from something other than alcohol. Seeing a lot of people here have had experience with managing depression (therapy and meds), perhaps the forums may act as a guide for him, a guide besides yourself. If you're unable to guide him into counselling, perhaps someone on the forums can. Anyhow, worth a thought.

    Mentioning to your ex the impact of alcohol on depression as well as the mention of gaining access to all the great things Beyond Blue offers, might have him looking at the possibility of managing the 2 issues at the same time (cutting down and stepping up, to get help and support).

    Take care of yourself LeeA18, you are a beautiful person.

  7. LeeA18
    LeeA18 avatar
    135 posts
    16 August 2018 in reply to therising

    Thank you. I really appreciate all the support and guidance.

    When his depression began again, one of the things he said was that he was drinking a lot. I didn't respond to that. I knew that he self-medicated with it during his bouts of depression. Then he mentioned it again last week. Last week I didn't handle it well as I gave him a leacture instead of just listening to him. I absolutely love this man and it tears me apart that he is going through this. He just seems to be floating at the moment and he doesn't feel like he has a purpose in life anymore and just feels lost. I don't get much out of him. I am trying to focus on myself but it's hard to sit back and watch someone you love really struggle.

  8. geoff
    Life Member
    • Awarded by beyondblue for providing outstanding peer support to the online community over a period of 3+ years.
    • A member of beyondblue's blueVoices community
    geoff avatar
    13475 posts
    16 August 2018 in reply to LeeA18

    Hi Lee, and thanks to Therising for her understanding and appreciate her replies back to you because I also self-medicated with alcohol and it caused a lot of hardship between my (ex) wife and myself.

    I'm about to logoff as I start early in the morning, but will certainly follow up in the morning.

    Best wishes.

    Geoff.

  9. therising
    Valued Contributor
    • A special award for members who go above and beyond to support others here on the forums
    therising avatar
    1487 posts
    16 August 2018 in reply to LeeA18

    Hi LeeA18

    Definitely important you continue looking after yourself, paying attention to your own light as you help another rediscover theirs.

    As I often say to people, EVOLution and love are strongly related. Wanting someone to evolve in the most positive of ways is an expression of your love for them. My brother is forever lecturing me to give up cigarettes not because he loves the cold reaction I give him but because he loves me and fears for the impact they have on my health. The lecture thing is a little like trying to slap some psychological sense into someone.

    By the way, instead of me calling your ex-boyfriend your ex, I'll refer to him from now on as your friend. The fact that your friend has repeated the conversation about his increased alcohol consumption would suggest he himself is concerned. It's definitely good that he's conscious of it and not in denial. Perhaps you could encourage him to talk freely about it. I find that once people begin talking freely about their concerns, they begin offering up pieces of a puzzle they themselves are longing to put together. Bit by bit, we can acquire the ability to help them be constructive in gaining an overall picture of things.

    In regard to 'purpose' (in life), it is a rather tricky thing; it is always there yet not always visible. It is our perception which dictates as to whether we see our purpose or not. Whilst our perception within depression can be affected by darkness, light by ever increasing light, the path ahead eventually becomes clear.

    Take care and do not hesitate to kiss that hand which holds the hand of another, on their path toward greater clarity. That hand of yours is a precious thing.

    1 person found this helpful
  10. LeeA18
    LeeA18 avatar
    135 posts
    16 August 2018 in reply to therising

    Thank you so much therising. what you have said is absolutely perfect.

    he is my friend. It breaks my heart but that’s all he can be. He has made a lifestyle choice to be single as a relationship is too much for him. I respect that. As his friend, I have found that he has opened up to me more than when we were in a relationship. His drinking will no doubt come up again. This time I will be able to plan it a bit better. He is a truly beautiful person, it’s just a tragedy that he is going through this.

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