Step 12 advice

Here’s my dilemma:

  • I’m an alcoholic who has been blessed with four years of sobriety. I moved out of state in my sobriety which was something my alcoholism was preventing.

  • One of my best friends still lives at home with his parents–which is actually a great way to get sober for some people. But for him it seems to be enabling. He is still drinking although he knows it’s the root of his problems. He is seeing an AODA counselor. He is on probation until February. He is prescribed benzo meds which is new. He has developed auto immune issues, diabetes, and neuropathy all likely related to his drinking.

  • I can tell he really wants to come visit me. But he passed out drinking while we were playing video games together just last week. Should I have him over ASAP to try and give him a spark of life? Or should I wait until he has a few months sober? I live in the middle of nowhere where mother nature is stunning.

What’s best for him?

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That is a tough one? My questions would be 1. The strength of your recovery? 2. Are you thinking of doing the 12 th step if he does? 3. What would your top 5 must have boundaries be? 4. What would your response be if he goes against your boundaries? Like GI Joe says “Knowing is half the battle”

  1. I practice constant vigilance and humility. That said my sobriety is strong. I wouldn’t risk it for anything or anyone.

  2. I’ve gone through the steps. He hasn’t. I have no intention of discussing them with him unless he brings it up. I’m trying to practice step 12 by giving him strength and hope.

  3. No drinking is the only boundary. If he does drink I’ll pay to put him on the next flight home (when sobered up).

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That sound realistic! Thanks

True. Root problem is insecurities like a lot of us.

That’s what I am leaning towards, but not sure. Thank you!

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Hi Matt, congrats on the 4 years!

I’d say no. Not to say that you shouldn’t invite him if that’s what you want, but just this: none of us can save someone else. As the old expression goes: “you can’t push a rope”.

If he doesn’t want to change - if he doesn’t want it in his heart and if he’s not willing to make changes (which it seems is the case) - then this visit will be at best a brief lighter period in a long career of heavy drinking.

Another reason is “wherever you go, there you are”. Maybe being in the country will help, maybe not. If he isn’t changing - if he isn’t working on his internal changes - then at best, he’ll be a dry drunk while you’re there.

Ultimately he’s your friend and it’s your life of course. But his life will still be there, wherever he is. He needs to empower himself to see clearly and move with purpose, and to do that, he’s going to need something deeper and more transformational (edit to add: and systematic) than a trip to the country.

I don’t mean to be negative, I promise. I’m just trying to be direct and clear :innocent: Whatever happens I wish you both health and progress :slightly_smiling_face:


Thank you. This is what I needed. This is exactly what my initial reaction was. But then I didn’t know if I was being negative or too strict. I told him I’d love to have him once he’s taken care of himself and has some sobriety behind him. I think I’ll leave it at that.

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