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Old 05-05-2012, 11:31 AM   #1
 
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I have a friend who has been in the hospital for the past three weeks due to complications of pancreatitis. She lives 4 hours away, so it isn't practical that I can visit her.
However, I have made small unsuccessful attempts to contact her through phone. (Leave a message, but not follow through in trying to call her back for a long time)

I am angry at her. She has had an alcohol and illegal prescription drug addiction for quite awhile. She stopped using the prescription drugs for awhile but was still a mean drunk when she drank.
She lied about her ex-husband and her former friends...the ones that decided not to be her friend anymore because she was so awful when she was drinking and under the influence of drugs. Since I lived far away, I didn't get the full story until two or three weeks ago. Her ex-husband is trying to seek primary custody and I am backing him up. He's not a bad guy and now I know she was the person to ruin the marriage, not him. I also know that she has been neglectful and verbally abusive to her children.

Well, now she is in the hospital. Right before going, she had called me to cry about how her current marriage (her second husband) is falling apart, but only focused on his negative behavior. She sounded drunk. I couldn't talk long, thanks to my baby crying. Really...thank you, baby!

I'm hoping she gets help, but according to a mutual friend, so far she is still very defensive.
I just don't want to talk to her. I really don't like her. I haven't made up my mind if I want to stay friends with her. I suppose if she gets help, sure. But really...I'm tired of the lies; our personalities don't mesh. We're only friends, I believe, because we've known each other since childhood and we at least at one time seemed like we cared about each others' wellbeing. I still care, but really from a distance. I'm not sure I want to be there for her. That sounds awful, doesn't it?
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Old 05-05-2012, 11:38 AM   #2
 
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You are not awful. You can only give so much to people and take so much from them. She isn't a good friend to you and it sounds like you've attempted to be a good friend to her. It's ok to step away because you have to consider how Boomy feels first in all this. You can't help someone who doesn't want help and you don't have to stick around them either. Keep your distance and don't feel bad. I have a feeling you'd feel worse if you were to see her or be more involved.
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Old 05-05-2012, 11:59 AM   #3
 
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I agree with what Speckla said.

Honestly, she doesn't sound like much of a friend, not in the true sense, anyway. If you are only "friends" because you have known each other since childhood and you are not even sure if you even like her, I wouldn't feel bad about distancing yourself.

I also believe that you can't help someone who doesn't want help or doesn't acknowledge that they are an addict. That's the first thing they teach you in Al-anon.

Never feel bad or guilty about taking care of your own mental well-being. See my recent thread on knowing when to end a friendship.

Best wishes to you!
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Old 05-05-2012, 12:27 PM   #4
 
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Think of it this way: I know if I were feeling that way I would have a hard time being in a room or on the phone with her and being kind and supportive. Maintaining your distance might be what's keeping you from losing your temper at her.

Your feelings are completely appropriate.
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Old 05-05-2012, 12:27 PM   #5
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Boomygrrl View Post
I'm not sure I want to be there for her. That sounds awful, doesn't it?
Honestly, are you able to help her? It sounds as if maybe she uses you just so she can talk about the drama in her life, drama that she brings upon herself. These are things she should be telling a counselor, not you, because what can you do about any of this?

You're feeling guilty and that's a natural emotion in this circumstance. It means you care about other people but recognize that they are in a place beyond where you can help. It's a sobering fact.

Sorry you are going through this.
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Old 05-05-2012, 04:06 PM   #6
 
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You're not awful for feeling like this. It took a long time for her to break your trust. At some point, you have to say enough...especially with your family needing that emotional support you probably used to give her.

And really...how many lies can you listen to before you stop believing anything that comes out of the person's mouth? My sister used to be like this woman when she was a teenager. She cleaned up her act when she was around 19-ish, I want to say. She's now married with 2 kids and 26. I still have a hard time believing her and she's been on the straight and narrow for 7 years. It's hard to give that trust to someone once they've destroyed it. And she has even told me it's hard for her not to lie, so she doesn't blame us for having a hard time believing her. She still has some of her user tendencies that she'll never shake, like "borrowing" stuff without asking (she was a huge klepto to feed her habit), then coming down (I rent out her basement apartment) terrified to return it when she comes to her senses.

I don't blame you one bit for distancing yourself from this hot mess. It's a self-preservation defense.
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Old 05-05-2012, 04:55 PM   #7
 
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Nope!!

She has an addiction. I have dealt with both parents with addictions. They only got help when the people they loved cut them out of their lives.

If you truly do want her to get help, plan to cut her out her her life but tell her why. Tell her when she is clean and sober or what to get help to do so you will support her (if you are willing), but until then you want nothing to do with her.

Doing this to my parenats saved their lives.
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Old 05-05-2012, 08:24 PM   #8
 
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Just terrible!!

In all seriousness, it sounds like you are doing exactly the right thing to me. She won't get help until she is ready, if she ever reaches that point at all. When enough has become enough, you have to back away.

I think it's fantastic that you are supporting her ex in the custody situation. She may never realize it, but you are being an incredible friend to her by doing this.
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Old 05-05-2012, 11:43 PM   #9
 
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Boom Boom,
You have to be a friend to yourself first and foremost. You have your own life and child to care for. You're no good to yourself or your family if you let someone pull you down and make you unhappy or make you feel guilty. Everyone makes their own bed and sometimes you have to leave them to lay in it and get themselves out.
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Old 05-07-2012, 07:46 AM   #10
 
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No, you're not awful at all, but I think you need to stay out of her custody situation. You admit you live far away, haven't been there and barely know the story. Plz stay out of that and let people qualified to sort that out do so.
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Old 05-07-2012, 08:53 AM   #11
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But on the flipside, don't be afraid to speak up, if asked*, about her alcohol abuse and drug addiction.

*I'm talking about being a witness, not just giving your two cents or opinion.
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Old 05-07-2012, 04:42 PM   #12
 
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I agree with Speckla too.
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