The family had good representation from important people in the alcoholic’s life, and there was professional help, but that’s not leverage.
“We paid almost $50,000 for that program and it seems like a complete waste. We feel so helpless. What do we do?”
I recall someone telling me he could be patient as long as he knew that eventually he’d get what he wanted. Well, it’s easy to be patient then. The trick is to have patience when you don’t know the outcome.
Here we arrive at the core of stigma: the alleged inferiority of the person with alcoholism based on weakness of will. But alcoholic people aren’t weak-willed; if they were, it would be much easier to convince them to seek help.
Alcoholism is stigmatized. So is drug addiction. So is mental illness. And that’s an important obstacle to recovery.
Once someone with alcoholism acknowledges the need for professional help, even insincerely, the biggest obstacle is gone.
He still isn’t willing to talk about me or my feelings. The kids and I went through three years of pain waiting for him to reach the point where he admitted he needed help
The goal of treatment is to maximize chances for a successful outcome. But ultimately, to drink or not to drink remains the alcoholic’s choice.