Dear Katie & Kelly,
I have a friend who keeps saying she wants to quit drinking during our weekly brunches on Sunday, but then the next time we’re out together, she’s got that ever present drink in her hand. I want to be supportive and hold her to her pledges, but I’m not sure if she really is an alcoholic or not. I’ve always just assumed she was one of those relaxed Organic Freedoms. Should I just keep my mouth shut, or should I tell her she to get help?
Tipsy in Tennessee
Often I just take a passive, supportive route when people tell me they want to stop drinking. Not like it’s happened a gazillion times but a few. I tell them I have several friends who used to drink, decided to stop, started attending AA, and got really happy. I’ve found these words resonate with people who truly have a problem and they often ask about these anonymous friends at a later date. They want to know more about this path. If they don’t have a drinking problem and were temporarily self-medicating, usually they stop talking about not drinking because they don’t drink as much anymore. Feel free to steal my anonymous friends and make them your own during your next brunch if she’s still talking about quitting.
All our best,
Katie & Kelly