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35yr old carer to alcoholic mum, I’d be so grateful for help - Carers UK Forum

35yr old carer to alcoholic mum, I’d be so grateful for help

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Hello all,

Luckily found this forum googling my situation.

My mum is 67, she has been an alcoholic since I was 11. She is now quite ill and disabled. She has aorta problems, crumbling coccyx, intense thyroid and arthritis, cannot gain weight. I bought myself up alone whilst looking after and doing everything for myself and I’m sick, I’m sick of it all. I hate how everything rests on my shoulders. I beg her daily to stop drinking but she doesn’t, seems to think I’m crushing drama. She understands the trauma she has caused me, she has made me suicidal she knows that but she doesn’t care enough. She never fights for me always has a defeatist attitude and I’m so sick and tired of the ramifications of her selfish behaviour. My mental health is gone. I’m constantly suicidal and she knows this and just gives me a ‘there there’ talk.

I’m so tired. I’m so fed up. I don’t know what I’m looking for here but I need to write something because I’m going to lose myself. My whole life has been impacted by her selfish actions

I recently applied again for carers allowance but she is annoyed they may take money away from her. Why am I even bothering with this?

She doesn’t care enough for me, never has.

I’m sorry for my rambling, I’m so upset today
My heart goes out to you - alcoholics are mega selfish. But you DO NOT have to continue caring. Have you considered contacting Al Anon ? They are a support group for the family of alcoholics. I do feel you need to start planning your escape. If you are borderline suicidal, please please see your GP. I would also suggest you try counselling as you do need support. It wont be easy as alcoholics are mega manipulative but you just cannot go on like this. Your mother is relatively young and could go on for years.

Hopefully others will come along who can offer better advice as it is early, but I wanted to reply to you and say that I do understand. I am a carer for my much older husband. At his worst, he drank a litre of vodka a day. He has cut down dramatically but is still a difficult viscious old man.
Hi Melanie, welcome to the forum.

I'm dismayed at how little mum has nurtured you, how she expects you to do everything for you and then resents you claiming Carers Allowance because she will lose part of her benefit as she can't manage without a carer!! You should have received it long ago.

My own mum was physically disabled with arthritis and a rare condition called hyperostosis which left her permanently bent, and I have a brain damaged son. I ended up on the verge of a nervous breakdown, trying to please everyone when I was newly widowed and newly disabled.

It was the first time anyone was looking just at me, not as someone's mum, daughter, or wife. I was encouraged to stick up for myself more with regard to mum, and taught ways to manage her expectations. Hugely helpful.

Have you asked Social Services for a Carers Assessment?
Mum could also have a Needs Assessment, but even if she refuses, you can still have your Carers Assessment.
Ask for counselling to be funded for you.
Sadly, you will never change mum, but you can change things for the better, for yourself.
Promise yourself that in 12 months time, things are going to be different.

Does mum own or rent her home?
If she rents, will you be able to stay there after she dies?
(Too many carers have been made homeless by councils after their caree has died or moved into long term care. It's so important that you know what will happen to you, and have a decision in writing, long before you need it.)
Hi Melanie

You are in an awful situation.
it is not your fault.
None of it is your fault.

Your feelings are normal human responses.

Phone the Carers UK helpline for guidance for help available.

I am sure you know it is the alcohol, it is a poison and drug, a disease that has control of your mum, it dominates her attention, desires and commands her love.

It sounds like your mum qualifies for a nursing home placement, can you ask her GP about that if it is an option for her? I don't know if it is true, but I heard or saw on tv that an alcoholic person was advised not to stop drinking altogether because the shock withdrawal to the body could kill them.
If you are known to a crisis team, contact them.

Carer Needs Assessment - if you have one, phone them for a review telling them you are in crisis.
If you haven't had one, call social services and tell them you are a carer and in crisis.


Contact Al Anon for help.
You are right Breezy - if someone has been drinking daily for a long period of time, they must NOT suddenly stop as they could then experience siezures. They really need to wean themselves off gradually with medical help. But they have to want that medical help and to stop drinking.
Thanks Helena, I couldn't recall if it was a true situation on tv or an urban myth on social media.
Yes they have to want the help to stop.
I don't believe your mother will have money taken away from her for you to have carers allowance.
If I can be as bold as to say this, your mum is probably worried about her money for alcohol reducing and thus less of her drug.

If you are not working it is important for you to have carers allowance because your NI payments are made for you while you are receiving carers allowance. The NI payments are towards your pension payments.
You will get x amounts of weeks backpay on your carers allowance, which is yours alone.
If you have been an unpaid carer for a long time, ask the carers Uk helpline about seeking backpay for your NI payments in case they have advice for you.

You have to inform the DWP if you mother goes into hospital and when she returns from hospital, if she is in hospital over x amount of days your allowance stops until she is back home.

You may qualify for other benefits.
Glad you found this forum.
You are not alone, there is help for you here and I am sure Al Anon will be helpful for you too.

Follow all that Bowlingbun has said.
Especially that last bit about living arrangements.

Or, if you want to leave, how will your mother live? in a home? get carers in?
Where will you live and how will you live?
Phone the helpline for Carers UK
Search for Al Anon and ask their helpline as well.

Don't be alone.
In my very humble opinion threatening an alcoholic is not such a good idea. My sister in law was a mostly functioning alcoholic. Threats don't work, alcoholic just turn to the comfort they know. Alcohol. Plus make them feel and act agressively
I do agree with looking after yourself and not being obliged to look after anyone else under duress. Except obviously for young children.
The reference to 'threatening' in this post is to a now-deleted post which was inappropriate.
Pet66 wrote:
Fri Aug 05, 2022 6:26 pm
In my very humble opinion threatening an alcoholic is not such a good idea. My sister in law was a mostly functioning alcoholic. Threats don't work, alcoholic just turn to the comfort they know. Alcohol. Plus make them feel and act agressively
I do agree with looking after yourself and not being obliged to look after anyone else under duress. Except obviously for young children.