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Dr. G.
Dr. G., Psychologist
Category: Mental Health
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Experience:  Licensed Psychologist.
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Should I avoid visiting my friend/lover of 2 1/2 years while

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Should I avoid visiting my friend/lover of 2 1/2 years while he has taken it upon himself to attempt his own recovery from alcohol?
We have been apart for 7 months (I took a 5 month work detail -away from home & now he is on a 4 month work detail - away from home.
We talk on the phone 1x/week to 1x/month. The new man (of two months) - exercises almost daily after work, does not drink alcohol & goes to bed early.
He says he has been thinking about me & hinting that we visit our old friend again (who is in an assisted living home near my man friend).
I took a survey on AA & he has 6 of 14 or so indicators of an alcoholic. He is also probably love addicted to his ex-wife (who cheated on him multiple times). We were great lovers/friends, but some separation has been healthy for me to get out of the occassional dramas with the ex, which hinder our ability to be closer.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  Dr. G. replied 1 year ago.
I say keep things the way they are. It seems to be working out right now. Although, I question how well he will do with his own sobriety if he can't even admit he is an alcoholic and won't seek treatment. I think for your own sake, keep it like it is. I think you feel the same but guilt is creeping in. Don't let it. He has to fix his own problem and you don't need the drama in your life. Stay strong.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Should I encourage AA and or counseling? If yes, do you have any advise on how to encourage AA or counseling? And/or general advise for a person in my role to him at this time... he is a great person with some addictions that hinder enjoyment of life to the fullest, his physical and mental health (to a degree).


 


He does seem to be in denial about many of his problems (not that he has them, but more that he needs help to fix them). For example he has told me probably 20 times in 2 1/2 years that he should go to AA, He says drinking ruined his marriage, etc. When I mentioned the counselor or AA idea while he is away from family, drinking buddies, distractions, etc. he said "I've been to enough counseling to know what I need to do. It's all about me. I just need to do it." I know he has some things stacked in his favor in his present situation (new town, good job, new start, etc.), but how likely is it that a person can recover without support?


 


Thank you for your insight.

Expert:  Dr. G. replied 1 year ago.
It sounds like you have already suggested it to him. It certainly wouldn't hurt to say something to him such as, "I know we've talked about this before, but going to AA or counseling can be a good source of support to help you going in the direction you seem to be going in now." It seems your role should remain, "supportive friend". He indeed is going through some positive changes right now and like I said before keep it like it is. You want the best for him and that can be a tough spot to be in when you see that he could benefit from additional support. He will make his own decisions about AA or counseling and after you suggest it to him one more time, leave it alone. Ultimately, he has to decide that for himself. Good luck to you and again, stay strong!
Dr. G., Psychologist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 1467
Experience: Licensed Psychologist.
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