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rking1487's avatar

Are my parents alcoholics?

Asked by rking1487 (494points) May 13th, 2008
22 responses
“Great Question” (8points)

This is a two part question
1. Are my parents alcoholics?
2. Would it be disrespectful or me to confront them?

Background info
My dad and step mom consume 2–3 bottles of wine per night and get pretty buzzed on a regular basis some nights more then others. They don’t act like idiots or go screaming and yelling they usually just listen to music or watch reality TV. However it is impossible to have a serious conversation with them after 5:00 PM because they won’t remember or can’t make a contribution to the conversation because of their state of mind. I find it a little irresponsible that they get legally drunk every night and it could prevent them from being a serious parent to me or my two other siblings that live with me. For example last week I fractured a bone in my elbow playing hockey around 6:30 PM and I had to drive myself to the ER with one arm because my parents were to drunk to drive. Are they being responsible parents?

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psyla's avatar

Yes, your parents are alcoholics. Do you drink? What do you drink, how much, & how often? Often, one’s response to drunkeness is to have a drink. If one of them quit drinking, the other would cut back. What’s that chemical that fouls one’s taste for alcohol?

rking1487's avatar

The second question should be ” Would it be disrespectful of me to confront them?”

St.George's avatar

Yep. They’re alcoholics. There’s nothing you can do to help them unless they want to help themselves. I would recommend that you try out some AlAnon meetings.

Good luck…

NeroCorvo's avatar

I agree with Megan and strongly urge you to go to Al-anon

psyla's avatar

Alcoholism has been proven to be a nutrtional deficiency. Lack of good nutrition causes a craving for alcohol. Get your parents to take a good strong daily dose of C and B vitamins. Social support groups such as AlAnon have been proven to have a low cure rate statistically. Craving alcohol is physiological, not psychological. I recommend “Life Extension” vitamins as they are pharmaceutical grade. Centrum and all that stuff you see at WalMart has such a measly dose, it will not help.

babygalll's avatar

First of all, they have to admit they have a problem; it doesn’t look like they are any where near that, since they drink together.

Second, you can’t do anything to help them. They will have to want to help themselves.

Lastly, I agree with the others. Look into the local meetings.

Good luck.

St.George's avatar

@ psyla AlAnon is for those affected by others’ use of alcohol. AA is for the alcoholics.

rking1487's avatar

Do you think it would be appropriate to invite my younger brother who is 15 to come to a meeting?

St.George's avatar


NeroCorvo's avatar

yes- you should both attend.

mcbealer's avatar

It certainly sounds like it.
Is it possible to reach out to other family members, perhaps a trusted teacher/friend/spiritual leader to help organize an intervention? I would think that would be the best forum for you to safely and effectively confront them.

soundedfury's avatar

@psyla – No, alcoholism isn’t a simple vitamin deficiency. It’s dangerous to suggest that it is. No licensed doctor would suggest it. Alcoholism can cause a vitamin deficiency, though, so vitamins are often suggest for alcoholics to try to counteract that effect.

rking1487's avatar

I think they would take extreme offense if I had an intervention, plus there isn’t anyone to do it with.

mcbealer's avatar

how’s your brother gonna deal when you move out into your SF apt.?

wildflower's avatar

Yes, they have a problem with alcohol. The fact that they are not available to you due to alcohol, makes it a serious problem.

You should tell them how it makes you feel – possibly together with your siblings. Sit down with them before 5.00PM and let them know.

Also, I don’t know how close your family is, but maybe also talk to a family member who is your parents age (aunt/uncle) and see what they think and if they might talk to them too.

jenlk1207's avatar

it sounds like they do. I am a recovering alcoholic and know all to well what the disease is about. I would suggest to go to alanon or alateen like others suggested. The purpose of those meetings is to learn how to deal with alcoholics and you will meet others in the same possition. Take your siblings if they are interested in going. Unfortunately there isn’t a lot you can do for your parents because they need to recognize they have a problem. If you try to confront them, they will get angry most likely. Get to some meetings and talk to people there, they can help you. Meetings can be a little intimidating at first, but you’ll catch on. Just keep going. If you have any other questions please feel free to ask. Good for you for reaching out and asking what to do. Just remember that your parents are sick, and they don’t know it. They aren’t being “bad” parents on purpose, they really do love you, but they are sick with a very sneaky disease. Good luck

wildflower's avatar

jenik is right.
My father is also a recovering alcoholic. Loosing his brother, marriage and business didn’t make him stop drinking – a serious health scare eventually did. At the time I was mid 20’s and could finally start building a relationship to him.
Don’t let it go, you’re missing out on some of the most important people in your life if you do.

scamp's avatar

Your parents are alcoholics, but you can’t make them get help. They have to want to do it for themselves. But you can help yourself and your brother by going to the alateen meetings and learning what you can do to make your lives better despite your parents problem. I’m very sorry you have to live with this. The acoholic household is a very painful one to grow up in.

Babo's avatar

Yes, they do sound like alcoholics, I’m sorry to say. Please do yourself a favor and check out Al-Anon. You’ll be glad you did. There’s no reason to be dealing with this alone. Best of luck to you!

nikipedia's avatar

@psyla: I wish you wouldn’t state things as if they are fact when little or no data exist to support them. I would really appreciate it if you would be more careful and thoughtful when posting in the future. Thanks.

@rking1487: I agree with pretty much everything that was said (except the vitamin deficiency nonsense). You know them better than any of us, so only you can determine how they’ll react to your bringing this up. Either way, it looks like a discussion is in order, and AA would be good support.

iCeskate's avatar

read the book l,” the bottle in the kitchen” ( its a shorter book

skceb1234's avatar

i have the same question so could u plz give me some help. im desperate

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