Monday, November 7, 2011
Courage to change...
I had a slap in the face last night. I’ve been neglecting a whole segment of my readership and I want to apologize because it was never my intent. I’m talking about alcoholics who follow my blog. Many are caretakers of end-stage alcoholics; others seem to gain insight from reading what it is like for the rest of us. This post is for you – my alcoholic readers.
I had a commenter last night who wanted to know if it was safe for her to detox at home. I felt a sense of urgency in her comment. I can’t advise her to do anything. I can only suggest. But I know she needed my help. It took everything in me to not post my phone number and have her call me. Instead I urged her to call her local chapter of AA or a rehab center.
I sent out a tweet to try to find someone who could offer her more help than I did. I wanted to hear back from a rehab center that would volunteer to help her even if the help was just over the phone. I thought maybe a recovering alcoholic would respond and extend a hand. But Twitter gave me nothing. How very disappointing that was.
The help did come from two of my loyal followers and they offered the best words they could to help. I don’t know if she heard their words. I don’t know if she got the help she needed.
When I started this blog, I never really thought much about alcoholics who were not end-stage. I had enough to deal with just having Riley. I never thought I would be providing help to people who didn’t want to be in Riley’s situation. Nevertheless, here I am just now discovering that I may be able to make a difference in the prevention of end-stage. Imagine – a world where alcoholism never gets to that point!
I’m looking for a rehab center willing to work with me by providing help in the form of taking phone calls from people in crisis. By “in crisis” I mean people who are feeling a need to detox or stop immediately. I mean people who are urgent in their request for information and may want to be admitted that very same night. The alcoholic may not live in the rehab center’s locale, but a referral to a nearby center should be possible.
There is the naggy little voice in the back of my head that tells me that there would be NO money in it for the rehab center in making a referral – so why should they help? It seems that money is always the issue. How about this as a reason why all rehab centers should provide some type of assistance no matter what the financial situation is – IT IS THE RIGHT THING TO DO! Wouldn’t it be great to dispel the idea that rehab centers are money-grubbers who are only interested in well-insured patients? What a novel idea to provide help just because you can.
That being said – if any rehab centers out there want to join me and offer support to my alcoholic followers, please e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org. If we are a match, I will post a link to your center both here and on The Immortal Alcoholic FaceBook page.
Enough about rehab centers. If you think you need immediate help there is always AA. I’m told that if you call them, they may even send someone to your home to help you through the difficult decisions surrounding the “to drink or not to drink” question. You don’t have to be a Christian. You don’t even have to believe in God. You just need to have a desire to stop drinking. If you’re not sure if you want sobriety – talk to one of these people who have walked in your shoes. They’ve seen and heard it all. Most importantly their hearts are open to helping others. And it’s FREE!
To find a local chapter meeting there is a website that will tell you the available meetings in your area. You can find it here http://www.aa.org/lang/en/central_offices.cfm?origpage=373 .
AA also has online meetings. You don’t even have to leave your house. Just join in on your computer. You don’t have to get dressed or even brush your teeth – just go to this site http://aa-intergroup.org/.
There are other support groups that are not 12-step based. I don’t have any links to those at this moment, but would welcome any to contact me via e-mail so I may post the info on my blog.
The question of detox is difficult to answer. It is my opinion – and only an opinion – that detox should never be done at home. However, if you are only drinking a couple of shots a day and don’t have the shakes if you go a day without – maybe you can just quit. If I were an alcoholic and I wanted to detox, I would not do at home without consulting a medical professional.
Today I’m going to set up a place on my blog that supports alcoholics looking for help. It is my way of doing what I can. Is anyone else interested in joining me in this challenge?
at 6:16 AM