Active Alcoholism

Posted on June 23, 2011

3


I had a really unfortunate experience last night, with someone who is really struggling with alcohol.  A friend of a few years, that I have always maintained a connection with so he has a lifeline.  Over the course of the last few years I have watched his addiction progress from fun and laughing to anger and resentment.  The sad thing is, he is angry at me.  It’s like he is angry at me for not fixing him.  He thinks that he should be able to call me and have a simple conversation, and all of his problems will be solved.  Last night, I informed him it doesn’t work that way.  I have had to draw very clear boundaries with this person.  I used to go hang out, we have a lot of mutual friends and sometimes they call and invite me to hang out.  I do not engage in those activities anymore because I can’t be in the room for 30 seconds without him getting angry at me.  So I decline the invitations.  I no longer hang out with him at all, I do not take his phone calls or respond to his text messages after a certain time of night because I know he is drunk, and I no longer try to engage him in coffee, or breakfast, or lunch, or any of the other non-drinking activities that I enjoy.  I used to try to extend a hand, to make sure that he would always know that I am available if he is ready for help, but I can no longer do it.  He found me last night, and asked if I would talk to him for a few minutes.  I agreed.  Within 3 minutes of the conversation he was yelling at me, telling me what a horrible friend I am to him, I am terrible at helping, I am a horrible sponsor and an even worse counselor.  After a few minutes of his rant I realized that our friendship no longer exists.  I told him that I worry for him, I told him if he wants help he has to stop drinking, and finally, I told him goodbye.  I have always felt this sense of responsibility to care about him, to be there for him.  No longer.  I am finished.  I was so upset about the course of events and all of the things he said.  I was so angry at the amount of bullshit I have tolerated to be available for this person.  And today, I am relieved.  I will no longer engage in this drama, I have a beautiful, drama-free life and I love it greatly.  I will no longer allow this person to steal a single second of my time.  

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