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messageSeeking someone with AA Support Experience prepared to help a friend in desperate need of helpattachment
Posted by Thunderblue600 June 23, 12:30PM

Yesterday 22 June a chance encounter outside Kristal Pharmacy connected me with a 63yo gentleman. For five years he was alcohol free and had been attending AA groups, come the lock down all such support ended and the guy fell off the wagon.

'I have trouble sleeping, awake since 2am it is a long wait until 6am when the off licence opens and I can get my vodka, I have fallen between the cracks, my life is falling apart I am desperate for help, I don't have a computer, calling a helpline or joining a whatsapp group is no use, I need 121 socially distanced help.'

So I took details and shared that I could not make any promises but would try and help in some way.

What struck me hard was the realisation that no doubt this poor guy could be the tip of an iceberg I imagine there could be literally hundreds of thousands of ex 'addicts' that as a consequence of the lock down have relapsed - there has been plenty of media about cases of domestic abuse going through the roof - what about alcohol & drug 'addiction'?

All over London there are wonderful COVID-19 Support Groups including here Nunhead Knocks with over 1500 volunteers, however I imagine they are not 'equipped' to help anyone that has relapsed due to alcohol or drugs.

I can't save the world, but if just this one guy could be helped then maybe by small steps others that have 'fallen between the cracks' in time can also get 'real world' support.

We need to be aware that so many that need help are without internet access and invariably have a very basic phone. The offer of a PC or a new phone ('you can join our whatsapp group, you can join our Zoom group, you can call this support line') is exactly NOT what these people need.

So I am reaching out to anyone reading this post that has AA Support experience that is prepared to offer socially distanced 121 help for this guy. For your information lives in Nunhead.

If anyone can help please send me a private msge.

Please keep the feedback non judgemental and focused on trying to help this guy.

Attachments: help06.jpg (8.7KB)  
messageRe: Seeking someone with AA Support Experience prepared to help a friend in desperate need of help
Posted by Jules-and-Boo June 23, 01:45PM

He is best going to A&E and they can detox him. you have a big heart, but it's not that simple.

I had someone staying with me who was going through the same. The only way he could get help was going to therapy and staying as in patient. Otherwise we'd have to watch him 24/7. He's sneak out, buy vodka, go to the park, get picked up by ambulance, go to hospital, escape hospital and the cycle would continue.

Really, with alcoholics, they need more than one on one support.

More concerned he's on his won, where's his family?

messageRe: Seeking someone with AA Support Experience prepared to help a friend in desperate need of help
Posted by Blah Blah June 23, 08:38PM

Yes I second that. Isolation is particularly challenging for alcoholics. Socially distanced counselling isn't going to be enough probably. You could try contacting the community mental health team on Lordship Lane.


They are likely to know best what help is available at the moment for someone in his circumstances. Also, he can get a referral to them from his GP if he has one. All CMHT's have crisis teams, so I suggest you ask to speak directly with someone from that.

It sounds to me as though he needs some kind of outreach visit to assess his needs. That he confided in you is a good sign that he is willing to get back to the recovery stage he was at. So I would stress that it would possibly be productive for any resources to be made available to him.

messageRe: Seeking someone with AA Support Experience prepared to help a friend in desperate need of help
Posted by Thunderblue600 June 24, 02:20PM

Dear Jules and Blah Blah your advice is much appreciated and yes the big issue is that he lives on his own - my friend has now been offered 121 socially distanced AA support twice weekly and he is very keen to attend.
I will discuss your feedback with the person running the AA Group.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit was june 24, 02:20pm by Thunderblue600.

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