I can’t Believe it, he is still sober

I started writing this two weeks ago, when Faith was sober, I never got round to publishing it. Since then things have changed again. But I will leave my first few hopeful paragraphs………..

What’s this? What’s happening?

I’ve  got used to calling Faith only to hear the drunken voice that I know only too well. Even when he’s sober I ready myself when I call him, to hear his drunken answer so I know he’s back drinking.

But this time, so far it hasn’t happened.

So I have told him I will visit this weekend with food parcels. I would give him enough food for a year if I thought he would stay sober.

But today he is, So today I will help him with food. He still hasn’t managed to sort his benefits situation, and I know it’s not because he hasn’t tried, so he has money to pay his rent but nothing else.

I asked him how many days he has been sober and he answered with “I don’t know, I haven’t been counting” This is a little different, he usually adds on a few imaginary days. Maybe, just maybe, the fact that he needs to stay sober to sort this benefits situation has been a factor?

Back to today.

I think the reason he wasn’t drinking was simply he had no money.

When I visited him with the food both he and his girlfriend were happy and thankful.

She had plans to see here son the next weekend. All positive thoughts and plans for the future. I think this is the first time they have ever both been totally sober together.

A few days later I spoke to Faith, he sounded very down and mmmm maybe he’d had a drink. He certainly wasn’t drunk, but, I had that feeling. I decided not to ask, it would change nothing if I did.

Then he started not picking up when I called, so I knew.

I haven’t spoken to him since until tonight. He said his girlfriend Hope, had gone out and was not answering her phone, he was concerned. He sounded pretty sober, but I knew.

I asked if Hope was drinking, he said yes she was and quite a lot. I then asked him, he replied just enough not to get the shakes. Well that’s a little different to the norm, usually he would be totally out of it.

I decided to broach the subject of rehab. He listened, he said he seemed to be in a cycle off being sober for a few weeks then drinking. I thought, he had been in that cycle for years, but didn’t say. He said his best chance of getting into rehab was if he was to go to ADAB, I might have that wrong, but it is support for addicts as far as I know. He said he could get a support worker if he went there. I said “but you haven’t gone, you knew about the place, even had an appointment, but you didn’t go”

I reminded him his life was not able to move forward while in this circle. Of course, it’s up to him, nothing I can do. He sounded OKish, he said I love you mum. So that’s it. Update. For once I’ve had a good few weeks without worry, let’s see how much longer it lasts.


Has it really been a year?

Has it really been a year since I last wrote on here?

I stopped writing because I gave Faith links to this site and other bloggers who write about their battles to stay sober. I thought it might help him. But as usual he didn’t listen.

I didn’t want him to know I was writing on here but feel it’s safe for me do so again.

It’s actually quite good to look back over the year and realise how far he has come, even though he is still drinking. So what has happened over the year for me to say that?

I guess the main thing that happened was something awful at the time but was in fact the best thing that could have happened. Faith went back to his drinking mate and in their drunken stupor they had a fight, about alcohol of course. But the police were called and of course they looked on it as a young man attacking an old man and they charged Faith with assault. He was taken to the Police Station and later the hospital where it was discovered he had a broken nose.

He was interviewed and things really were not looking good for him. They really believed that he had attacked his buddy. He went into total meltdown not able to function at all. I was still keeping my distance from him and trying to do the stepping back, making him take responsibility for himself and his actions.

But I realised he was in no fit state to fight his own corner, and an unjust criminal record would not help him. So I emailed his solicitor, explained that he had far worse injuries than his mate and I also mentioned that he was classed as vulnerable and I had great concerns that he had been  groomed by this individual which could be backed up by medical staff. Thank goodness it worked and charges were dropped. But the positive was he and his mate were not allowed to contact each other. Faith was petrified of being charged again so since then they have had no contact. So that is the really positive thing to come out of it.

But he continued his drinking, getting ill, hospital, sober for about 10 days, then drinking again cycle. And I kept my distance as much as I could. But I realised he was getting thinner and sicker and had to try one last time to help him. I know, I know, he has to help himself but it’s so very hard as a mum to watch.

Even though his NHS buddy told me there was no funding available for rehab I investigated myself and discovered the wonderful rehab unit that he had been to before had a charity linked to it and was able to offer a few places. To give her her due, once I told his NHS buddie this she put everything into action and he was eventually offered a place.

Heaven for me, a whole six weeks without that constant worry. And again some hope that he might, just might have a chance of leading a sober life. It’s not until that worry is taken away that you realise how very draining it is and how it affects your everyday life.

6 weeks later and he’s out. I’m away on holiday but he calls, all good, he’s positive, in fact he’s on top of the world, and he has news for me. He has a girlfriend, someone he met in rehab so they both know everything about each other, no secrets and most importantly no drinking. Wow can it get any better?

I enjoy the first holiday in years without phone calls from hospital. Life is wonderful with a sober son.

That was in October, how long will it last……….

The never ending circle

karmaIts been a quiet week.

Faith has been staying at his flat and drinking. It appears he has been trying to drink in moderation.

We have spoken every day, and nearly every day he has said I need to come back, can I come back. I always say yes but he hasn’t come back.

He has pretty much spent the week on his own shut in his room just going out for alcohol and a little food. he has told me he has eaten every day.

This afternoon he turned up.

I went up to his room to talk to him.

“I can’t do this anymore mum, I just wish someone would shoot me, I need help” I try to talk to him about AA meetings, try to explain that he needs to be with people who understand and can support him. “I can’t talk in front of people” one of his anxiety problems. But he tells me he has been to a few meetings. He’s just not going to enough, and not sharing, I know. but I cant help, he has to do that.

I feel hopeless, it’s a Saturday at 6pm he’s arrived at my house. So too late to call any doctors to try to get some help. I’ve had a busy weekend so far, tonight I wanted to relax. I realise I am going to have to break my own rules again by giving him small amounts of alcohol, I know if I don’t he’s going to be very ill and I don’t want to have to deal with that tonight.

So here we are again, the never-ending circle.

How I wish I did not have to deal with this.

I wish I could write a witty funny blog, an interesting blog, but this is just a diary of my life, and its not witty or funny, its sad.

Calm and acceptance

serenityI’m back.

I had a little break, I made myself forget for a little while.

Last time I was here Faith was here and detoxing.

He either felt well enough to go home or could not deal with my new rule “If your here asking for help and a safe place to be then you must go to AA meetings” So he went back to his flat.

I tried calling the next day but his phone was off.

Now that to me and with our history, meant he was back drinking. I decided I would not contact him until he called me.

The next afternoon he did call me, the reason his phone was off was because he was in a meeting, Wow!!!

It was a good meeting, a different place, an afternoon meeting and some guys his age were there, he felt good that he had gone. Can you see me at the other end of the phone with a smug smile on my face???

I had a very busy weekend, my partners birthday, full of celebrations with his family which takes me away from home, and I tried hard to leave thoughts of Faith behind. And it worked for a while. Seeing other functioning family’s doesn’t help. When they welcome me in, it makes it harder.

Sunday when I am home I call him and offer dinner. “Yeah that sounds good” but he doesn’t turn up. I wont call him.

Monday evening I send him a message.”I guess your drinking” and I ask when his next appointment is for Rehab. He missed the last one as the letter went to his flat and he was here, he only has 3 chances. (OK I know I am supposed to stand back and let things be) No reply.

Today he calls “Yes you were right, I am drinking, can I come back?”

“Yes you can”, but as I expect, when I get home he’s not there.

Later I talk to him, I feel sad, he says he is Ok, he has a doctors appointment tomorrow, that’s good, at least someone will listen to him, I am not angry, I just listen and try to be a little positive.

This seems to be a calmer time in our journey, I am still dreadfully sad, but we are calmer, no anger, no expectations from me I guess, an acceptance.

We finish our conversation by saying “love you”

Oh wow……… I looked for a picture to add after I had written this, and look what I found, another day, another lesson.


And so the never-ending circle goes on.

I’ve left him alone, tried to forget, not called.

Then the phone rings and its him. I’m sorry I can’t do this on my own, I have tried, I know you have so much going on I don’t want to do this to you but I have tried and I just can’t stop on my own, Please can I come back to yours.

What do I say, this isn’t a drunk just asking for a roof over his head, this is my son saying I want to stop but I cant on my own, I need your help.

But I still have my Al Anon voice talking to me saying he has to find his own way of doing this. But I know his buddy is now out of the picture for 2 weeks, he had already  lost a stone in weight again even before this last bout.

So Faith is back, shut in his bedroom, he doesn’t come out when he is going through this, just for water, he is too sick to eat and to shaky to hold a plate. I’m worried and allow him a small glass of wine (breaking my own rules) but that is it, I know even that will prolong symptoms, but he shakes so much he can’t sleep and I need sleep.

He gets through the night, I can hear his distress through the walls but try to shut it out.

Another 24 hours and he has eaten a little. The sickness has stopped, The shaking is not so violent. He is starting to sound a little like himself now.

He suffers with nerve pain now. This is something that has gradually been worsening, he describes it as someone pricking his body with needles. This I can deal with, it does make me angry that the people whose care he is under say he should not be suffering withdrawal as he has such short bouts of drinking now, so needs no medication to help him through.

Well I wish they would spend one night in his shoes or mine and then tell me that.

Tonight I will sleep, his sleep will be broken but then he has nothing to do all day tomorrow but lie in his bed.

I have a doctor’s appointment this week, first time I have ever asked for help, this is really draining me

I miss my daughter dreadfully at the moment. I would normally share with her, but as she is on the other side of the world I don’t like to worry her.

At least tonight Faith is sober. That is my positive for the day.

New rule and conflicting advice

Conflicting%20inner%20voicesOh,  I’m pretty tired tonight.

Had a conversation last night with a Faith going through detox. He has been told so many conflicting things. Don’t stay with mum as she is an alcohol free zone and you must not stop drinking without meds and supervision. Don’t listen to mum she doesn’t understand alcoholism and the dangers of stopping drinking. I want to scream at these people who dish out advice without knowing the bigger picture.

I have lived with alcoholism for 10 years,  I think I know more about how the alcoholic feels and why they act as they do than these so-called experts. When your child is sick you find out all you can about their illness don’t you?  This can’t just be me?

I do know how dangerous it is to stop drinking without medical help,  I have been the one on the phone saying how sick my son is and how frightened I am. I have seen him hallucinating (when he was in a controlled rehab detox situation) and fitting when not. He became so sick he was sent to hospital from rehab and had a brain scan. I have seen him being sick unable to keep fluids down for days on end, I do get it!!

I also know from mothers instinct, time spent with him, this never-ending journey, when he can detox safely, when he does not need to be told to keep drinking, when at the end of that  time of drinking (because he has been told to drink) I will be concerned about how safe he is to detox on his own.

Sorry but his confused mind has been more confused by this so-called help and at the end of the day when they go home, I am left with the confusion, because at this time I cannot walk away because I understand his confusion, it mixes with mine.

Because he has also been told to go to my house,  (a place of safety and sobriety) by his buddy who does know him and how he works and who I am, because she thinks it is the best place for him to be at this moment in time.

I wish and understand at the end of the day it is Faith who should make these decisions himself, but with all this conflicting advice and his own alcoholic brain screaming at him what chance does he have to make any decision

I think the only people who can give him real advice are the people who have walked his path before him.

I have laid down a new rule tonight which he has accepted.

When he is in my home because he wants so try to find sobriety he must go to AA meetings.

When I first set down the rule of no alcohol in my home it was hard at for him to accept. He tried to break it but finally accepted. But he has accepted now and I think he finds a relief in it.

I hope my new rule will help him find his way to sobriety.

I can’t make him, but I do know how much my support means to him, I hope it helps to lead him in the right direction.

I know this is not stepping back and letting his higher power take over as I am supposed to do.

We have both tried that.

Tonight he has decided to go home.

So he is not ready to accept the new rule yet.

All I can do is wait, hopefully he will accept soon.

Confusion and medication

Tonight I’m feeling tired and confused.Lost and Confused Signpost

And Faith is ill and confused.

I am still trying to arrange care and the right help for my mum, all so difficult when you are working full-time.

It was suggested by Faiths buddy that he came back here at the moment because she was concerned for his safety. I could just do without the extra worry at the moment. How I wish for a few weeks off from this.

Because he was told not to stop drinking he has taken them at their word! Now they are discussing that he maybe doesn’t need rehab. Well by the time they have made up their mind he doesn’t he will!! I am feeling pretty frustrated with it all at the moment.  And on top of it all THEY decide he should stay at my home!

Now he is saying he is confused and I believe him. He is going between being fine and having moments of real confusion. This on top of my mums confusion at the moment I am beginning to think I am going slightly mad.

All I can do tonight is tell him he is safe. I have a few (2 I think) tablets left from his last detox that I will give to help him through the night and so hopefully I can sleep. I know its wrong to give him medication but as I am having to deal with this on my own I feel I can do what I think is right.

Tomorrow I must talk to his buddy and tell her I can’t deal with him being back here like he is on my own.

Reinforcing rules

My mum bless her was admitted to hospital with another TIA.no-drinking-sign

I was relieved as she has now had brain and neck scans and they are taking things seriously. She has been allowed back home which is where she wants to be, and my dad seems happy to care for her.

Further tests are planned and I hope things will start happening and they will get the support they need.

I spent the day in hospital with her yesterday, so had no time to really speak to Faith.

He has asked to stay at my house but I am not convinced he’s not drinking. He swears he’s not but I don’t have the energy to force the issue.

When I get back from hospital he tells me he has not had a drink but wants to go and get a can.

He seems to have been confused by the different information he’s had over the last few days as I am too. If he wants to go into rehab he must be drinking!

This time I know I need to reinforce my rules. I explain this to him, I cannot allow him to drink in my home, this also means he can’t go out and drink then expect to come back.

He takes what I say without argument and decides to go home.

I am pleased I held out, but not happy he still wanted to drink. I have too many phone calls to make to spend much time thinking about it.

I leave my mobile phone on at night in case my parents need me. I am not impressed when I am woken at 4 by a message from Faith saying he keeps being sick. Nothing more than I expected. I ignore it.

This morning I message him back explaining again that it is his body rejecting the alcohol not withdrawal, I think he finally might be starting to understand this. I have another day of family commitments, he calls in the morning and again in the afternoon to let me know he is OK so I wont worry, he doesn’t understand that I am really not that worried at the moment, he is actually healthier than he has been for a while, but I guess it is his way of showing his concern for me at this stressful time.

I have heard nothing tonight so I guess he’s drinking. I wont contact him.

At the moment stepping back is what I need and I have learnt over the years when I need to do it.

Family and Rehab

I’m back and feeling a little more positive.


It’s been a tough few days, it appears my mum had a mini stroke, it was very worrying, but it seems she is also back, I can have a conversation with her again and her mobility is starting to return. I can’t quite believe she hasn’t been admitted to hospital, but at 82 and my dad at 86 it might do them more harm than good to be separated, so I’m not pushing the point.

It has made me step back from Faith. I had a phone call from him 2 nights ago asking for help, I told him to get out of bed get to a meeting and help himself because at the moment my mum is my priority, he of course did the usual putting the phone down on me and then calling to say “Great so I don’t matter anymore, OK I get it, goodbye” I didn’t answer because I was angry, and one thing I have learnt is it does no good to be angry and argue with an alcoholic, I later messaged him telling him he was being very selfish. Now I know, I know, alcoholics are selfish, but I was down, tired and hurt.

To my surprise I got a message back, “I’m sorry, is granddad OK?”

That’s more like the old Faith. 🙂

He had a meeting yesterday with (now this is where I get confused as to who is who) whoever it is he needs to see to be assessed for rehab. When I spoke to him in the morning he was reluctant to go, but I told him again, at the moment I did not have the energy to deal with him, if he wanted help he would have to go get it himself.

30 minutes later I got a message, “I’m at the bus stop”

So, later when I spoke to him, he said they were going to try to push for him to get into rehab quickly. This will only be for 2 weeks. Not what he needs at all. It is basically just a managed detox, which he does not need at the moment. Because he becomes ill so quickly when drinking he never gets to the stage where he would be at risk of fitting, He can detox uncomfortably but safely on his own. But he wants to go, so although I have a little twang of guilt that someone else is more in need of the bed than he is I am happy that he will get a good 2 weeks alcohol free and hopefully it might help him get himself in a better place.

He was also told to stop taking the tablets that he had been prescribed. He should not be on them. More conflicting and confusing information.

It was also suggested to Faith that he didn’t stay at my house as I had a no alcohol rule and it was dangerous for him to stop drinking. This is someone talking to him that obviously does not know him. Wonderful, someone in authority has just told him to keep on drinking.

I did not know this when Faith asked if he could come back here. I’m feeling that I could do with him not being here at the moment but how can I say no.

When I got back from work I went up to see him in his bedroom. I was pretty sure I could smell alcohol but then I knew he had been drinking. But I didn’t have the energy to check his bag and confront him, tonight it was easier on me to bend my rules.

This morning he seemed surprisingly good although he was being sick when I left for work.

He called me later at work to ask if he could stay again tonight. I’m not quite sure why he wants to but that means he doesn’t want to drink so I agree.

I get a call at work today from his buddy. she said they are not sure that the rehab being offered to Faith is the right thing for him and I agree. She was also concerned that he had been told to stop the prescribed tablets and said that he should not have been told to stop as that was a medical decision. This is where I struggle, are these people not on the same side? How confusing for Faith to be told these different things.

I have come across this so many times in the last 10 years. I really thought now Faith was under another borough that seemed so much more organised with addiction and delivering the right help that it would be a thing of the past, but here it was again!

But sense has kicked in and buddy said she knew Faith wanted the rehab so they would go with it rather than confuse him further, and it would be left that he would stop the tablets until he came back out from rehab when things would be put in place ready with lots of support.

I have to say this is making me feel much better. no idea when rehab is but I know hope and Faith are back in my heart.

But I’ve just had a call from my dad, he’s called 999, please keep my mum, Faiths Nan in your thoughts, I don’t know how Faith will cope if the worst happened.

I will stay ever positive x

Trust and Faith

faith 2

Well my blog and bed was the plan!

Faith called about 8pm to say he should have taken up my offer to come home. “Well I did offer earlier but I’m tired now and in my pj’s”. Oh OK.

10 minutes later he calls to say he has started walking but he’s feeling dizzy so he is sitting on a bench. Luckily my other son volunteers to go and pick him up.

He arrives home and askes  if he can go straight up to bed.

I go up later to talk to him, he was too scared to stay on his own, he was worried if he went to sleep he wouldn’t wake up, how sad to be scared like that.

So today has been pretty calm.

He was still here when I arrived home and looking better. He’s eaten some food today and is much more talkative.

I had a conversation with his buddy today and it wasn’t good news. Funding for the rehab that I found does come from the government and the pot is empty. She will still encourage Faith to go through the process to gain a place but the chances are, if he does get a place it will be for only 2 weeks. She agrees with me that 2 weeks is a waste of time, he can do 2 weeks by himself, its after that he falls.

So not much hope there. I will just have to trust and believe that he can do this on his own.

I will just have to have faith. after all, today he is sober.