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Alcoholic father in law... Al-anon family group

We are living with my father in law who is an alcoholic. He is not a violent alcoholic. He is depressed. He has been drinking since my fiance was a child. Prior to our son being born we told him that he would not be allowed to hold him if he had been drinking. Now you would think that instead of coming home from work and pouring that glass of wine right away he would go sit with his grandson for a few minutes. NOPE. Since he was born he has only held him a handful of times. I have never had to deal with an alcoholic before. I understand that it is a disease. It kills me to know that my parents (who live on the other side of the country) would give anything to be able to hold their grandson. THis is creating a stress on my relationship with my fiance. It was suggested that I go to a al-anon family meeting. Has anyone gone to one of these before? Do they help?


Asked by Andes_Mom at 4:29 PM on Nov. 4, 2008 in Relationships

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Answers (4)
  • I have been to alanon and it does help. It helped me realize that I need to be responsible for my self and my feelings and actions and the alcoholic is responsible for himself and his feelings and actions. I can't change him, I can only change myself. Changes are if his behavior and drinking is getting on your nerves, you need to do something to change the way you are living and/or understand what you can do to focus on yourself rather than him. Your fiance could try ACOA (adult children of alcoholics). I also have attended those meetings and that is where I learned more about why I related to people the way I did. I grew up in a dysfunctional home and learned dysfunctional ways of relating because of the "ism" in my home. I strongly encourage you both to go and learn. I can't recommend enough the need to get out on your own as a family.

    Answer by manna1qd at 6:37 PM on Nov. 4, 2008

  • My mom was a drug and alcohol counselor for 20 years and I have sat through so many classes and seen so many things by now. Al anon is great for getting in touch with others in a similar situation and being able to have someone to help you cope. Alcoholism is a disease and its the hardest to change. Almost all alcoholics deep down know they have a problem but they don't think its a serious one because they aren't abusing an illegal substance. In their mind they can rationalise it and make it ok when its really not. It clouds the mind and they can't see how much they hurt those around them.


    Answer by HeartsNRoses at 4:44 PM on Nov. 4, 2008

  • First and foremost an alcoholic WILL NOT change unless THEY want to. No amount of begging or pleading, crying, yelling, or anything else will make them change their mind unless they are really ready to change. So my advice to you is this get educated. Get to know as much as you can about the disease, it helps to get inside the mind. Go to al anon and use the resources they have available and get some suport for yourself and your husband. But just going to meetings wont be enough to help you or him. You have to have the support of the whole family. You father in law has to be shown that you care about him and you want him around to take part in his grandsons future. He most likely will tell you that he doesn't have a problem but just keep working at it. Slow and steady. And in the end if he really doesn't want to change sadly there is nothing you can do but love him from a distance.


    Answer by HeartsNRoses at 4:45 PM on Nov. 4, 2008

  • Sorry I know those were really long posts lol but I hope somthing I said helps. Feel free to messege me if you need anything else. Good luck !

    Answer by HeartsNRoses at 4:45 PM on Nov. 4, 2008