11 September 2009

Analysis of the situation so far

Here are some key facts about Greg's current situation:

Health - he has heart disease, diabetes, circulatory problems in legs and feet, liver damage, slight brain damage; he forgets to take medication (or refuses to take it when I provide it), drinks one 70cl bottle of whisky per day, smokes 30-40 cigarettes daily, eats almost nothing (has no appetite).
Because of the diabetes/smoking, his circulation is poor, so his feet are purple, puffy and covered in sores.

Money spent on alcohol/cigarettes - too much to mention. Approximately £140 per week.

Hygiene - Greg does not wash himself, clean his teeth or change his clothes, in fact he has taken lately to not even bothering to dress and bums about in his dirty dressing gown all day and all night. He stinks. Any attempts on my part to get him to wash or change clothing (so I can actually get it into a washing machine or burn it) constitutes nagging.

Interests (in no particular order) - whisky, talking about anything that happened 10-40 years ago, watching History channel on TV, dozing on a dining chair.

Irritants - anyone who interrupts his monologues, anyone who dares to say anything over the television programmes he watches ( he watches from 7am till 2 am the next morning!!)

Average number of times he has been out of the house in months - nil

Last time he went for a walk anywhere - 3 months ago

Age - actual age 60, looks 80, physical ability of a 120-year-old

He is a living nightmare.

Google Library picture


Kate said...

Oh how I can relate to this in so many ways - my 'late' ex-husband was an alcoholic and I know the roller coaster ride you are on. I am fortunate -eventually he left me and I got off ....took some doing and the kids suffered but they are better now (bright, intelligent and loving) and so am I!

I have no guilt feelings - it was a survival thing - he didn't survive.

Keep safe,

Rebel Mother said...

He is in a depressive downward spiral into a black hole that drags everything with it.

When I read your blog it brings back so many memories which my mind had blocked out. A survival mode I guess, like Kate said.

Anyway, I've got an Award for you over at mine, because your Blog is Bloody Brilliant!

Hope you like it.

Love RMxx

Gin said...

That is the sad side-effect of this horrible disease. I am so sorry for the both of you. It is sad to hear of such a life wasted. Keeping you in my thoughts.

nuttycow said...

When I first started reading your blog I remember you saying that when Kaye left home, you would leave to. Is this still possible?

Kit Courteney said...

Sometimes I just want to pick up a person from their life and move them elsewhere.

I think you and your daughter are quite remarkable.

Woody Jr said...

As an active alcoholic who is currently losing it all; house, family, marriage, license, ECT... I feel for you in a way that I cannot describe. Strangely I feel nothing for him, not even pity. I pray for you and Kate to receive the happiness you both deserve!

aims said...

Go! Go now.

word verification - puzzle. How adequate.

Daphne Wayne-Bough said...

You know there's less and less compassion in your voice when you talk about him. This is the detachment you need. It will get worse before it gets better, but it WILL get better. Stay strong.

Fat, frumpy and fifty... said...

How the heck does he get his booze then, does Tesco deliver it for him?

when I saw your post update I thought this will be about Kay and her trip to Uni....but no...

he sounds in a bad way to me Ros...his liver could pack up anytime, the legs could turn bad too, .....I wonder, considering the usual outcome are you prepared? And Kay?

You other mental illness' they would commit him, but this they just let them fade away, but that implies a slow calm ending....you must have thought this through!

I'm thinking of you, of course.....

rosiero said...

Just an addendum in answer to FFF - unfortunately *I* buy the whisky. The alternatives to my buying it are that either he gets horrible withdrawal symptoms (hallucinations, tremors, fits - and the doctors all agree that withdrawal has to be done under strict supervision and slowly, which a true alcoholic can never agree to) OR *he* drives out to buy it (thus running down several people on the way). Neither option is the best. So I buy it and become the enabler!!

rosiero said...

Forgot to add that, yes, Kay and I are prepared for the worst. I look at him each day and wonder whether the day is going to end with a blue-light ambulance rushing us to hospital. Again. Our life has been peppered with emergencies these last four years. The next one may well be the fatal one.

mumplustwo said...

Gosh. Have been following your blog for a while. Can't believe what you have to go through: a nightmare, indeed. Am amazed at your fortitude and your ability to carry on. Wishing you strength & courage. x

Crystal Jigsaw said...

Eventually his body will give up. You need to keep yourself safe.

CJ xx

Nota Bene said...


You and Kay are super stars..your approach is admirable, as ever. I hope one day your life will get better.

June said...

I know that it is very very hard to give up the fight, but there is no way that you can save him. He's happy in his misery. All of your description sounds so very much like my late FIL. The thing is that you remember who he used to be, I'm sure, and that memory dies a long and slow death until you actually see what he is now.

Some of the softest hearts and finest minds become alcoholics. It's true enough that I wonder if there isn't some genetic connection. Nevertheless, an alcoholic on the slide is a pretty gruesome sight, as you well know.

I am grateful to my husband that he left me. I wish he had done it years before. I've never seriously entertained drinking since the day he left. And I'm very very grateful that he came back once he saw that I was changing.

Sometimes I want to ask him why it took so long for his pain to become great enough that he would make a move.

Eliza said...

Nothing to add that hasn't already been said, just to send you a (((hug)))

laurie said...

oh man. no, he's not happy in his misery. he's not happy. he's addicted and sick and must be just awful to live with. i, too, would worry about him setting fire to the house. it happens!

i don't know what you're going to do but it sounds like you're about to do something. good luck.

marc aurel said...

I am not an alcoholic and I don't have diabetes, but my feet are purple and used to have sores that would not heal. Doctors cured all that by prescribing constricting socks. Now I always wear them on transatlantic flights and whenever a sore seems to be developing. I simply have varicose veigns.

Flowerpot said...

Must be hellish for all of you in your varying ways. All the best - and thinking of you. Let's hop[e something happens very soon.

Ellen said...

Just read this post after sending my e-mail. So sorry things are this desperate. Dx

Linda - Gold Coast said...

Oh Rosiero, I'm certain it wasn't the life that you had both planned for your Golden Years! Some great words of advice. I cannot help but feel compassion for Greg and especially more so for you and Kate. Thoughts and prayers to you all. Linda xoxo

icecold said...

You really are between a rock and a hard place, it must be awful watching him destroy himself like this...

Millennium Housewife said...

Rosiero, horrendous, no life worth living for either of you.

Nechtan said...

Hi Rosiero,

It is a terrible situation in which a wife must watch her husband deteriorate and a daughter must look on too. I can't imagine the helplessness you must feel and the daily apprehension of the day ahead.

The unfortunate thing is that you cannot change someone who does not want to change. I really wish there was a solution.

All the best


what happened ?how did i get HERE? said...

Rosiero.....We are strangers and would probably never have encountered each other without the internet....however, I truly feel for you and worry about your situation! You are in a no-win situation. Again like my late brother in-law he is beyond saving - unless he is sectioned. However, you need to do what you feel is right and no-one has a right to judge you. However, when I see how well my sis as done and how much better she is without having a man she once truly loved, in her life, I think there is hope...and that you should leave him.You have done more that your vows asked - he has broken them in a far greater way than you would by leaving him. Easy for me to say I know. Take care. Mxx

Not Waving but Drowning said...

This must be a living nightmare for you and I just can't begin to imagine how you cope with it and still manage to carry on as normal with the lovely Kay.

Thinking of you both,


PS has she come down to earth yet after her amazing news?

Linda - Gold Coast said...

Sorry Rosiero I typed Kate instead of Kay.

rosiero said...

Kate- thanks you.

Rebel Mother - thanks. I feel a bit of a fraud, as I am only telling my story.

Gin - likewise

nuttycow / aims/ DWB - working on it!

Kit - bless you

Woody - fight to overcome it before it is too late!

FFF - I've replied above

mumplustwo - I amaze myself sometimes, but when you have no choice, it is incredible what you can put up with

Crystal - thanks

NB - gee thanks :)

June - I guess this is the rock bottom they speak about.

Eliza/Laurie/Marc/Flowerpot - thanks

Ellen - have emailed separately

Linda - you are right. Not at all the Golden Years I envisaged. More rusty than golden!

icecold/ Nechtan - it is awful to witness. I feel so helpless and there seems to be nowhere I can turn for help.

MH - it affects the whole family not just the individual.

What happened? - Decision time coming up soon!

Not waving - Kay still cannot believe her good fortune. I don't think the penny will drop until she actually goes to uni.