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Posted by Lindsey on 30 April 2016.

In 2011, my brother died at aged 55 from alcoholism. My parents were devastated and within 2 years they had also both died, one with bowel cancer and the other with prostate cancer. I have 2 sisters, and these 3 huge family events hit us all very hard. We only realised my brother was an alcoholic when we saw him in 2010 and he looked so ill it was frightening. My you ger sister and I did everything we could to get him to the doctors and to see a counsellor. Eventually, he accepted that he needed to do something, but sadly it was all too late, he was booked in for detox in April 2011, but died in March. My elder sister who luves 150 miles from me, then had another major trauma, which was her stepdaughter dying of bone cancer at only 33, leaving a husband and 5 year old son. Over the last 5 years, we have noticed my sisters alcohol consumption increasing steadily. She always drinks cans of Stella lager, and it was about 5 or 6 a day. Yesterday, i saw her at a family wedding and her face has ballooned just like my brothers, and she is depressed, as my brother was. She is on anti-depressants, and wont admit she has a problem. Her adult children are concerned about her as she has now started drinking her first can at lunch time. She knows it destroyed our brother, but does not seem to want to help herself. What do we do, finding it really hard to be back here again, worrying about her.

Comments

Charlotte@icarus
5 May 2016

Dear Lyndsey

I am sorry to hear about the tragic events of losing your loved ones in such a short space of time from illnesses and alcoholism. It must be so difficult to have to watch your sister struggling with same addiction to alcohol as your brother.

Should you wish to speak to someone who has the same experience of what you are going through with your sister, I work for a charity called The Icarus Trust.  The charity was set up to support families and friends of addicts.

We have experienced and trained volunteers called Family Friends who you could talk to for support.  It is a free service and you can contact us by email on help@icarustrust.org or visit our website www.icarustrust.org

I wish you all the best and hope that you are able to get the help and support you need.

Charlotte

Asibling
10 Jun 2016

Thank you for sharing your story.

It seems there are few services and research done considering the experience of family members, in particular siblings. That is why I am conducting a research project looking at the narratives of siblings, encouraging others like you to share their experiences. If you wish to participate and share your story or would like more information please contact me at u1422721@uel.ac.uk. Thank you.

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