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TherapistMarryAnn, Therapist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 5809
Experience:  Over 20 years experience specializing in anxiety, depression, drug and alcohol, and relationship issues.
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Son aged 30 is an alcoholic - only recently admitted it to

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Son aged 30 is an alcoholic - only recently admitted it to his GP but not been back since. Stopped drinking on his own with no help but has had setback - problems with police after incident last year. Admits its his own fault but in v bad place. Wont go back to GP and his partner and myself trying to get him to see counsellor. He lives in London an hour and half away from family. 2 days ago was feeling suicidal. Drinking again . Lots of counsellors near his home - thinking cognitive therapy, someone that deals with addiction/alcohol abuse - what is best course of action? His other 'answer' is to leave the country which is no answer at all.

Hi, I'd like to help you with your question.

I am sorry to hear that you are going through this with your son. Alcoholism can take a wonderful person and make their life, and the lives of those around them, very difficult.

It is a good sign that your son admits to the incident with the police being his fault. As you may know, it is vital for a person with alcoholism to admit they have a problem. If your son was willing to admit that the incident was his fault, he may have a chance to break through his denial and see that his alcohol is affecting him and that he needs to stop using.

You may not be able to get your son to stop drinking, but being supportive with boundaries may help him work through his denial. I say "with boundaries" because it is easy to get drawn in to helping the alcoholic with their drinking. Co dependency is a very common issue with family and friends around the person using. By setting boundaries, you can love your son without adding to his problem. And the boundaries you set may help him break through his denial quicker.

Another way you can help is to learn all you can about alcoholism. The more you know, the better chance you have in helping your son work through his denial and be willing to get help. Here are some resources to help you:

Addiction-Free: How to Help an Alcoholic or Addict Get Started on Recovery by Gene R. Hawes

You may also want to try an intervention. This can help you and your family break through your son's denial and get him the help he needs. Here is a guide:

No matter what, be sure that you take care of yourself. Trying to help your son can be very stressful. Just the time you are investing now can eventually feel like a strain on you, even though you love your son very much. Take time to do relaxation exercises, eat well and get plenty of rest. Spend a day here and there just on yourself. And if you can, get away once in a while. You cannot help your son if you are too stressed yourself.

I hope this has helped you,

TherapistMarryAnn and other Mental Health Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Thank you for answer and resources info - will certainly try them

You're welcome! I am happy to help, anytime.

My best to you and your son,


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