Niece's Father-in-Law

Some alcoholics still have families when they get to AA. This is a place to ask questions and share experiences about relating to family members sober, especially when newly sober. (If you are not an alcoholic, please use the "Our Friends and Families" forum.)

Niece's Father-in-Law

Postby michmjon » Tue Feb 21, 2017 7:43 am

I have a very tight family- we get together often for dinners, card and board games, picnics and such on a weekly basis. My family are drinkers and there is alcohol present at every get-together and this does not bother me one bit- except for one person. My niece's father-in-law has been in and out of AA his entire life and for the past couple years it's been out. The man arrives at events clearly drunk and by the time late night rolls around he is either passed out or being an obnoxious, opinionated a$$h#le. A couple of times he has gone into black-out rages (at the family Christmas gathering he ran out into my sister's front yard and trashed all their yard decorations for no apparent reason). I have spoken to him about his drinking and asked him if he would like to start attending meetings again. I have even suggested other programs- all to no avail. His wife is one of the kindest, gentlest persons I know. I don't know how she puts up with this man. His behavior and drinking has cost them their house (foreclosure) and has made this poor woman's life miserable, but she still sticks with him. At meetings I've been told over and over to just leave when he goes into his drunken rages and obnoxious behavior. No. I am not going to give up time with my family because of one person's behavior. I value my family too much. I've had a talk with my niece about inviting him to family events, telling her that perhaps it would be best if he not be invited anymore until he realizes that his behavior is just not welcomed and until it stops his presence will not be tolerated. The issue there is that means her mother-in-law won't come if he's not with her and she does not want to deprive her of time with her grandchildren and her family. Suggestions on dealing with this issue would be greatly appreciated!
michmjon
Forums Enthusiast
 
Posts: 69
Joined: Tue Jan 03, 2017 11:03 am

Re: Niece's Father-in-Law

Postby clouds » Thu Feb 23, 2017 3:24 pm

michmjon, you need to get to alanon meetings, find a sponsor and share this problem with the group.

They can help you deal with this, we can't really.
" Burn the idea into the consciousness of every man that he can get well regardless of anyone. The only condition is that he trust in God and clean house." page 98 A.A.
User avatar
clouds
Trusted Servant
 
Posts: 1065
Joined: Mon Mar 23, 2015 11:45 am
Location: España

Re: Niece's Father-in-Law

Postby Noels » Fri Feb 24, 2017 12:03 am

Heya Mich :D I'm in "brainfreeze mode" at the moment so its not that I don't want to respond its simply that I'm unable to respond right now. Thanks for sharing :D We'll chat as soon as the brain have rebooted :D
mwah xxx
There is only Love
Noels
Forums Old Timer
 
Posts: 1247
Joined: Tue Mar 01, 2016 6:14 am

Re: Niece's Father-in-Law

Postby tomsteve » Fri Feb 24, 2017 6:19 am

clouds wrote:michmjon, you need to get to alanon meetings, find a sponsor and share this problem with the group.

They can help you deal with this, we can't really.


second this. amazing how the 12 steps work for more than alcohol.
tomsteve
Forums Contributor
 
Posts: 245
Joined: Mon Oct 20, 2014 10:25 am

Re: Niece's Father-in-Law

Postby Brock » Fri Feb 24, 2017 12:38 pm

Based on my experience, I see no value to be gained by someone firmly grounded in our own fellowship like michjon is, asking people at alanon what to do. The person he speaks about “has been in and out of AA his entire life and for the past couple years it's been out.” Mich says “I have spoken to him about his drinking and asked him if he would like to start attending meetings again.” I call that handling the matter in a mature caring way, and it's good that you will continue to see him from time to time, your example as a member of AA may influence him, and he will seek out a meeting.
"Good morning, this is your Higher Power speaking. I will not be needing your help today."
User avatar
Brock
Forums Coordinator
 
Posts: 3176
Joined: Fri Sep 07, 2012 1:45 pm

Re: Niece's Father-in-Law

Postby Noels » Fri Feb 24, 2017 1:03 pm

Heya Mich :D okay, brain is back together again so lets see what options we have available that you would be comfortable with :D

Firstly I agree with you on this - "No. I am not going to give up time with my family because of one person's behavior. I value my family too much"

Now before we go further into options available remember - us alcoholics didn't necessarily want to drink until we lost ourselves. When I look back to my drinking days I dont recall there ever being a time that I, while getting dressed to go to a party or family get together planned to get sloshed, then hit my name with a brick by fighting with whoever was in front of me and then to find a corner and puke my guts out. Nope I always went with the intention to have one or two and to just enjoy myself with the family not knowing that my first drink was already one too many and by the second one I was well on my way to disaster which I didn't plan or anticipate.

Since this obnoxious alkie have been in AA before I can understand your frustration as "he should know better" but he clearly doesn't otherwise he wouldn't still be drinking? :)

Apart from this I also remember that when I was pretty far down the bottle nobody but nobody could talk to me. Well, they could talk but there was no way I was listening and the words that I did catch most definitely did not have the same meaning to it as was intended so may I suggest that (I) do not antagonize or argue with him when he is in that state. Just agree or nod or make as if you're listening. Best even would be to just leave him alone with his bottle quite frankly.

Since he "enjoys" his alcohol the second option would be to feed him alcohol fast and hard so he can pass out before the sun goes down. Alkie uncle down - he cant disrupt the events, get together can continue = everybody happy :D

A couple of times he has gone into black-out rages (at the family Christmas gathering he ran out into my sister's front yard and trashed all their yard decorations for no apparent reason). - it may sound harsh but being an alcoholic myself I would say if he destroys another's property he needs to pay for it. Again, I don't suggest discussing it with him while he's in this state but your sister should phone him the morning after (when he should be feeling remorse, guilt and shame), remind him of what he did, tell him that it is unacceptable to her and give him a bill to replace whatever he destroyed. Will this cause hard feelings? Probably but an alcoholic still actively drinking don't need a reason to have hard feelings towards anyone. Its there already. No reason required.

I've had a talk with my niece about inviting him to family events, telling her that perhaps it would be best if he not be invited anymore until he realizes that his behavior is just not welcomed and until it stops his presence will not be tolerated. The issue there is that means her mother-in-law won't come if he's not with her and she does not want to deprive her of time with her grandchildren and her family. Suggestions on dealing with this issue would be greatly appreciated. - Unfortunately you know how this works - some of us see the light in time before we lose everything but some of us have to hit rock-bottom to find out that our solution lies at rock-bottom. Sounds like uncle alkie needs to go right down below the bottom and whilst mama is still there supporting him (either because she has nowhere else to go to, is so trapped in this destructive relationship that she's made peace with it) or whatever her reason for this is, he aint gonna stop whilst everyone is pussy footing around him and his problem for mama's sake.

So my final suggestion would be for niece and her husband to have a talk with mama and to explain alcoholism and recovery to her so she can understand why the family no longer want uncle alkie around and mama can make a decision whether to attend the gatherings by herself or start dopping with uncle alkie by themselves.

Whichever way you choose to go with this I'm sure it will be the way that it is supposed to be. Good luck and let us know what happens. Hopefully uncle alkie will get the message before his bottom falls out altogether!

Mwah xxx Noels
There is only Love
Noels
Forums Old Timer
 
Posts: 1247
Joined: Tue Mar 01, 2016 6:14 am

Re: Niece's Father-in-Law

Postby ezdzit247 » Fri Feb 24, 2017 4:00 pm

Congrats on 9 months of sobriety!

Unless you are hosting the family get together or the host/hostess of the gathering has asked you to speak for them, it really isn't your place or good manners for you to unilaterally decide who is or isn't going to be invited to the gathering no matter how strongly you feel about the situation or that your way of resolving it serves the "greater good" for all concerned, If this man's drinking and drunken behavior disturbs you, it's perfectly okay to relay that information to the host/hostess and/or just decline his/her invitation yourself.

you need to get to alanon meetings, find a sponsor and share this problem with the group.


Good advice. I agree. My first sponsor advised this when I was new to AA and I did. It was very helpful advice. The Alanon meetings helped me to understand why I needed to release people, places, and things that disturbed me and how to do it for the sake of my own sobriety, sanity, and serenity. I also learned about ACA (adult children of alcoholics) in Alanon, and went to those meetings as well. Alanon meetings taught me the importance of release and ACA meetings taught me the importance of forgiveness. I needed to learn both and incorporate both in my own sobriety.
“To laugh often and much; to win the respect of intelligent people and the affection of children...to leave the world a better place...to know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived. This is to have succeeded.” -- Ralph Waldo Emerson
User avatar
ezdzit247
Forums Old Timer
 
Posts: 2077
Joined: Tue Mar 11, 2014 4:38 pm
Location: California

Re: Niece's Father-in-Law

Postby michmjon » Fri Feb 24, 2017 8:28 pm

you need to get to alanon meetings, find a sponsor and share this problem with the group.

Good advice. I agree. My first sponsor advised this when I was new to AA and I did. It was very helpful advice. The Alanon meetings helped me to understand why I needed to release people, places, and things that disturbed me and how to do it for the sake of my own sobriety, sanity, and serenity. I also learned about ACA (adult children of alcoholics) in Alanon, and went to those meetings as well. Alanon meetings taught me the importance of release and ACA meetings taught me the importance of forgiveness. I needed to learn both and incorporate both in my own sobriety.


It's not so much my own sanity and serenity that is affected by this, it's that of the family. My sobriety is the LAST thing that is being affected by this- if anything it is showing me that I never want to drop so low to such a state again! It is the serenity and sanity of the family. I suggested Alanon's ACA groups to my niece. Her and her husband being a full-time workers and raising two small boys makes it real hard for them to attend meetings. I have volunteered to watch the kids for them so that they could attend, but the meetings are at an inconvenient time for them as they both get off work late. I am at the point of calling for a family intervention and asking my niece to ask that her in-law's Pastor be present at the meeting as well to act as a mediator, since they are very regular church attendees.

When my niece's in-laws are not present at family events, talk always ends up turning to "what Dad did at the last get together" and that everyone has just plain had it with him. My niece's husband sits silently through all this - his father present or not - but it is VERY obvious he sits silently because he is so hurt by his dad's behavior. At one family event at my niece's we tried the "no booze allowed" rule and within an hour her father-in-law snuck out "for a cigarette" and came back 15 minutes later smelling like he just downed a quart of vodka.
michmjon
Forums Enthusiast
 
Posts: 69
Joined: Tue Jan 03, 2017 11:03 am

Re: Niece's Father-in-Law

Postby Noels » Fri Feb 24, 2017 9:32 pm

Hi Mich :D shux it's a difficult one. I remember myself being the uncle alkie not so long ago. The intervention sounds good but it's imperative that this alkie find out how the family feel about it. Remaining silent is not helping him or anyone else as no one wants him around anymore. That I have found from other shares is the period right before everyone 'leave ' him so yes please, do it and see what happens. Maybe that's what he needs to get back into the rooms and you can be there to help him this time :D
Have a gorgeous Saturday :D
Mwah xxx
There is only Love
Noels
Forums Old Timer
 
Posts: 1247
Joined: Tue Mar 01, 2016 6:14 am


Return to The Family Afterwards

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests