My mother is drinking too much. How can I help her? She refuses to go to AA.

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My mother lives with us and is sipping at her wine all day. By evening she is looped and I'm afraid she is going to fall down the stairs of our multi-level home. We've talked about trying to keep it to two glasses a day, but she goes right back to her usual amount which can be upwards of a bottle a day. She also becomes "buggy" and less able to maintain boundaries. What can I do?

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Is your Mother going out and buying the wine herself? If not, problem solved, don't be her enabler. Stop bringing wine into the house or keep it somewhere she cannot reach.

It is your house, your rules.
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Simple-your house, your rules. Tell her if she wants to drink to oblivion she can do it in the confort of her own place where she can abide by her own rules. Stop being her enabler!
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Nancy, reading from your profile u do not state whether your mom has any illness? Does she have dementia or old age?
As for her drinking, I thought I read she is living with you? If so, don't allow it in your house if you don't won't her to drink. That is your rule n boundary or else. I hate to sound harsh about the drinking but what else do u have or should I say does she have as a choice? It would be nice to know a little more about your situation about your mom so others can help offer some advice for your situation. Please let us know a little more so we can try n help.
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I have been thinking about this since this afternoon. Having once been in this position with a husband, I understand your feelings. Is it possible to videotape some of the things she does when she has had too much? Are they things that would embarrass her to know she is doing or things that she is unaware she is doing? Would she see from the film how she is endangering herself? if so, would she change what she is doing or be willing to go for help? Usually a heavy drinker needs an enabler (someone who helps to mitigate the damages). Can you identify one in her life? If so, how about having a talk with that person.
Word of warning: Don't make threats you are not willing to follow through on. Such as, "If you don't quit drinking I'm going to make you move." If you make a threat & don't follow thru, she may not believe you next time you tell her something. She'll probably call your bluff. In Alanon they tell you that the drinker will probably not stop until they reach a crisis point. You cannot force that. I thought I could force my husband into his rock bottom place. His enabler came in and rescued him. Seems his point was much lower than I dreamed it was.
Another point, Alanon is not for the drinker. It is for those who have to interact with the drinker. It is kind of like this site, a place to get information, support and vent. It is a safe place. Don't let anyone threaten or shame you into not going.
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I agree that unless your mom wants to stop, attempts to coerce her into it will probably just be frustrating for you. However, she's living under your roof. You're entitled to clearly mark the boundaries with regard to her drinking. Decide whether it's OK with you if she drinks a lot, a little, or not at all. You mentioned that she has a negative change in behavior when she's deep into the bottle. If that's negatively impacting you and your family, you have a right to draw the line and hold it – all the way up to having her move out if she chooses to continue over-imbibing.
I think I'd sit down with her and explain how her drinking is affecting you (the worry about her physical safety, your sadness or embarassment over her behavior when she's drunk, etc) stick to talking about YOU, she'll just deny or argue any advice or analysis you try to give about her. But, she can't tell you how you feel. Be honest with her about your feelings, tell her exactly how much drinking you're willing to tolerate in your home and what the plan will be if she decides she doesn't want to live there under those conditions. Put the ball in her court, but you stay firm with your decisions. Good luck!
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My Mother is an alcoholic as well. She was living with my husband and I in her own apartment joined to our home. She got very drunk one evening and fell and broke her hip. That was a game changer. They replaced her hip but due to all the meds and trauma her dementia got much worse and she had to go to a nursing home-she is now diagnosed with mid staged Alzheimers. While she was in the hospital she was in restraints for 2 days while she detoxed from the alcohol. It was not a pretty sight.
Unfortunately I do not have any advice other than to try to make your Mother understand that if she falls and breaks something she will most likely have to go to a nursing home. It is a proven fact that the mind will get much worse - maybe your doctor can talk to her.
Good luck to you - I know how stressful this can be on a family. You and your family should try to go to some Alanon meetings - perhaps they can guide you through an intervention with professionals taking the lead.
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Your mother has lost much of life. Drinking clouds the memories. It would be a good move to an assisted living where her drinking would be under doctor's orders and she would be involved in activities and meet new friends. SK
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I'm sorry, but until she is ready to admit there is a problem, there is nothing you can do. She has to be an active participant or it won't work. Is there anyway for you to water down her wine? That is the only thing I can think of. If you say the house is alcohol free, she'll just sneak it or go out to drink. Will her doctor say something to her? Seems like I heard one time about a medication that made you sick if you drank, but I don't know anything about it.
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I guess the question here is "why". Why is she turning to wine? Is she feeling like she has no purpose and is but useless? Is she in pain? Has she suffered loss and cannot cope? Is she lonely? I am certainly no expert, but I feel certain that there must be something more going on that keeps her going back to her wine. Without judging her, sit down and really talk to her and find out what is behind the drinking. Help her solve that, and she may give up her daily wine habit.
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