I have just lost my best friend to alcoholism it was 1year 2days after the death of my mum which was so very hard but after a year I was just coming to terms with, my friend was there for me, we would speak several times a day on the phone , & text each other ,in the years I have known him to have a drink problem & in my heart of hearts knew this day would come, I have talked to him about his drink tried to get him to eat , but in the end the drink took its tole & this last year he as waisted away from his former self ,lock down didn’t help as I couldn’t visit him ,he was always kind & thoughtful & my only true friend ,for the past few nights I haven’t slept and keeping thinking of the last time I saw him ,and wished id stayed longer,
Dear Richard, I am so sorry for the loss of both your mum and your friend.
It sounds as though you feel guilty in some way for the way your friend died, but it seems to me that you couldn’t have done more than you did. Drink is one of the hardest things to give up and no matter how highly he thought of you, the drink would always win. There would have been nothing you could have done other than be by his side 24hours a day to keep him away from the bottle, and that would not have been practical.
I hope you can think back on the good times you and your friend had and rest assured that his world would have been worse without you. The many phonecalls and texts prove that.
I hope that things improve for you and wish you all the best.
Dear Ann thank you so much for your kind words ,I’m not a good letter writer ,as my friend would tell you my spelling is atrocious , I would visit my friend on a weds regularly take him shopping do lunch places that he wanted to go as he’d lost his licence years early, in the later months it was a total waste eating out as he eat very little he was always apologetic saying its just me & towards the end he could hardly get up the street only by using my mums walker ,so I would collect something on route to eat ,the last weds I saw him I hadn’t seen him for 3weeks due to a caravan holiday I had booked in feb to take him to his favourite place Norfolk in sept but this year we both agreed he wasn’t well enough to go , while away I phoned him 2/3 times a day he finally said he wasn’t well I said you must get the doctor out on Monday which the doc came out tues so the next Weds he was in hospital , he was discharge a few days later , the next weds I had my car in for service & couldn’t go over to see him , finally when I went over I found my friend in such a state , he had mouldy food in the fridge, his bed -bedroom clothes I won’t go into details , he managed to get dressed id arrived at 11am went to the local shop to get him some lucozade as he never really liked tea or coffee , I set to work cleaning up changed the bed 3loads of washing , he had no hair brush lost in hospital, so I set off to Sainsbury did a food shop for him ,even bought him a new reduced duvet set , as his were tired , got back put some minestrone soup on I sat with him and he managed to eat what id put in front of him ,by the time id done all those jobs id not really spent time with him , & he said talk to me , I showed him what id bought for him which he paid me for as always & said to him he can have the duvet for Christmas as the way things are going your not going to be here , and left at 4pm as its a good hour from me ,but because of what occurred I wished id spent the time with him ,
Oh Richard, what more could you have done? He was lucky to have a friend like you and you probably kept him going for far longer than he would have done without you. As I said before, he would have been worse without you and you should be proud.
Dear Ann I am forgetting something important , I’m so very sorry for your lose ,I appreciate you have been through a lot to say the least—
The Thurs after I was back at work I called his family left a massage saying I was concerned that he wasn’t eating & needed help which I have never done - they text they would check in on him as they are only 5mins away ,& got a tex saying they would get a care package & speak to the doctor ,I last spoke to my friend sat afternoon after work , he seemed bit mixed up ,I then get to thinking he’d got a water infection ,which he’d had once before , I tex that to his family , they said they would check on him I wish id gone over myself to see him - in the end my friend went into hospital Sunday & died in the early hours of Monday -which I got a tex from his family , he’d had total liver & kidney failure- looking back now I realise his discharge from hospital they had sent him home to die as he said it was like being in prison , I wish so very much he had told me weds so many things I would have liked to have said to him ,im on holiday this week which is good as im not at peace with myself.
Please don’t beat yourself up Richard. I think your friend was lucky to have you. From what you’ve shared with us I truly think your friend is at peace now. Sending love x
I have a very dear friend who is quite honestly the kindest soul on earth. If only all that goodness could be directed somewhere positive, but I’m afraid the bottle always always wins. You will beat yourself up, as your friend in his more sober moments will have beaten himself up. Addiction is cruel. I feel genuinely deeply sorry for your loss, and the days and days of loss in anticipation of what you " knew in your heart of hearts" was coming.
thank you for your kind words ,yes I will be lost without him , but at least I don’t have to worry about him , he’s at peace. I just need to find an inner peace myself ,
I know exactly what your saying my friend was so kind & thoughtful caring to all , I just wish he was to himself , I will miss him so very much
I lost a friend who was a former work colleague to alcoholism, and the same happened to my former landlady’s boyfriend. The work colleague was in his late 20s, he would drink when he was depressed, he had been in hospital, but came out and became teetotal. It was wonderful, he lost weight, and was so happy. We were then working abroad, and he liked this girl back in the UK, but she didn’t like him. We would spend ages talking about his unhappiness, and he now started smoking a lot again. Then he started drinking again. I left work, and we lost touch, a year later I found out he had died, he was so depressed over this girl that he was drinking a lot one night, and the mix of anti-depressants and drink killed him. It was so sad, and I was angry at why I did not stay in contact with him, but the truth is he wasn’t drinking that much when I left work, and I thought he would be ok.
My former landlady’s boyfriend was 40. He had come to the UK from Jamaica as a child, and lived in a council flat with his mum and sister. He would come home from work and just go into his room and spend all the time there. Unknown to anyone, he was an alcoholic. He would drink because he was so depressed - we found this out when he told my landlady. He had met my landlady on a dating website, and started visiting her. He was such a nice guy, and was finally happy. Sadly, one day my landlady got a call that he was in a coma in hospital. The doctors discovered that he was an alcoholic and that the drink had caused him to have a bleed on the brain. It was so sad - this guy had finally found happiness, he was making plans with my landlady for the future, yet he died.
So please do not have any feelings of guilt. Alcoholism is horrible, but without professional help, it can be difficult to help people who have a drink problem.
Sorry to hear that, it is difficult to see an entity collapsing in front of you, how it is your best friend, I always talk to my friend here that he should stop alcohol and play sports with him and disrupt my interests in order to sit with him, but at a certain moment he exploded and returned to alcohol again
thank you Abdullah for sharing your experiences with me
Omer yes life is so precious to give up for drink but its a disease & can’t stop
I agree that alcoholism is a disease and without experienced help, it is almost impossible to give up, I was a volunteer for a well-known helpline. I used to feel so sorry for people who were addicted to alchohol, some callers both on the phone or face to face would vow that they would give it up but very few succeeded without support,
You were a true friend to someone with this disease and I do not believe that you should have the slightest self blame, you could not have done any more than you did, AnneR is spot on with her reply to you. At least your friend is at peace now and is not suffering from the constant cravings, if there were more people like yourself this world would be a much better place.
good evening Mary , its been a very sad week for me , I miss phoning him as he was so kind & supported me after loosing my dear mum which I took very badly , I knew he was feeling bit out of sorts on the sat evening when I rang him , I text his family as they are 5mins away , but wish now id gone over to see him I would have been able to say goodbye but id been at work was tired & he is about an hour away , yes he liked the drink to much & it took him over , although I can’t remember now how many weeks I didn’t see him over lock down , which I also think didn’t help , I will miss him so very much as id call him several times aday , I nagged him so much about eating he was 75 & said you need the nutrian to keep your body healthy ,
Good evening Richard,
In just over 3 years my beloved younger brother died quite suddenly, 6 months later my best friend of 72 years died suddenly and the worst thing of all I found my husband of 59 years dead on our bedroom floor, 14 months ago. I suppose at my time of life, I am 81 years old, I can expect these losses but life is cruel at times and choose how old our loved ones are we still mourn their loss. It does take some coming to terms with though. I am really sorry that you are suffering such grief and I hope that once this pandemic is over, you will find peace of mind.
Take care and stay safe,
my dear Mary as you say life can be very cruel & very unfair at times , & you have reminded me of what my mum would say to me , that was ''everyone as troubles of there own Richd ‘’
I took my mums death badly she lived alone til 93 with neighbour myself keeping an eye on her I was only a minute away & I really did expect her to live to 100 or more, as she eat well & took interest in everything I would take her shopping ,she had a heart problem , after her death I read up on the signs & they were all there - the same as I did after my friend died & realised yet again he had all the symptom of alcoholism nearing death ,then I say why didnt I realise ! -
-I think what iv learned is we go along in life happy at peace contented , then all at once the stability & reassurance love & support that we have is shock & taken away its a bit like the roots of a tree they hold you against the winds of life suddenly we are insecure venerable
we are still the same person nothing as change yet all as changed our rocks are no longer there ,
iv been working all through lockdown & I have to say my colleges were all very supportive over the death of my mum as a lot of them had been there with a parent of there own -
I suppose its all about adapting to change, also knowing that tomorrow isn’t guarantied ,
( yet another night of not being able to sleep ) thank you Mary for your support ,
I have found, Richard, that grief has to be gone through, we can’t go over it, round it, under it, it is an awful emotion when you lose one loved one it is terrible but to lose more becomes downright unbearable at times.
When my dad died, I was 49 years old, he was only 74 years old, my mum joined him 8 years later, I didn’t grieve as much because I knew that was where she wanted to be, with my dad.
When he was 12 years old and she was 10, he told her that he was going to marry her, he often told the tale that he used to sit on the doorstep waiting for her flat feet running to the fish shop When he died, my mum was heartbroken and yearned to be with him, yet she did not want to leave her children and grandchildren.
It doesn’t make any difference how old a loved one is when they pass away, the fact is, we love them and cannot imagine life without them.
So sorry you have lost your friend this way i lost my partner at the age of 42 on 29th june he left me 36 and our now 12 year old
I am completley broken because he wanted the help started getting help but was too late the damage was done i didnt know the extent of his drinking or how long he hid it well he wasnt a bad person.
He was in hosp for 7 weeks feom feb in a bad way they gave him 50/50 he had ascites liver was failing needed chest drains numerous blood transfusions to name but a few i got him home in march for 3 months but he went downhill he hardly ate was skim and bone breathing was bad ended up back in hosp ventilated they could do no more
Like i say i am broken and hurts so much as he wanted so much to get better and he never did
Just remember you did all you could for your friend he was lucky to have you.
At 11 weeks in it hit me hard this week i am not too bad but keeping busy helps i cant change things so wish i could but rememeber one day at a time tale care x
hello - im so very sorry for what you have been through is totally tragic , not only for yourself but also your child trying to make sense of it all , It instills in me what a powerful drug alcohol can be to some people , They are not bad people at all for from it , my friend was very kind always thoughtful -my friend was a lot older than your partner ,he had young grand child which I said to him try & cut down be there for your grandchildren ,I sat & talked to him to no avail many times , what u have made me realise that even if id been nearer to pop in more make sure he was eating , the out come would still have been the same , It is heartbreaking to see a person u care about or love deteriorate in a few months , when I went over to my friends I put the rubbish in the bin & realised how much he was drinking I would say to him your killing yourself hed say oh the bin men didn’t come last week !, I had always known he liked a drink from first meeting he just went down the slippery slope , I can well understand your shock of not knowing how much your partner was drinking as I think we believe what people tell us ,what shows me again is that even person who had everything to live for including a partner & child to love & take care of, somehow gets hooked & just can’t stop , I can only imagine the distress & pain of trying to tell & comfort a 12 year old what had happened ,yes keeping busy if you can also iv found going for walks helps , im sure for you like me with the loss of my mum & friend it is when you put the light out in bed & you just can’t stop thinking about things the if only what if & wish we had ,iv been up & downs stairs making hot drinks iv lost count ,
im truly sorry for you loss Richd