I have two daughters rooming together in an out of town college. They came home for the weekend and attended a small party together with hometown friends. My older daughter became so drunk that her friend threw her in the back seat of a car and had her driven home along with my younger daughter who has never drank alcohol. When they arrived home, my older daughter became combative and physically assaulted my younger daughter because she was attempting to help her into the house.
According to my younger daughter, my older daughter drinks excessively every weekend while they are at school and does not remember a whole lot of what happened. My youngest daughter said that her sister “drunk dials” her boyfriend and verbally abuses him. She also lashes out with abusive language at my younger daughter. The next day she is told about her behavior (that she claims to not recall) and becomes very apologetic and promises to never do it again.
This is all new information because my younger daughter kept it hidden. I am so frightened with all the abuse taking place during my older daughter’s drunken blackouts. I need guidance in obtaining help for both my daughters.
These years can be such a scary time for parents. The kids are away at school, and parents have less control than before. I can imagine the amount of concern you must feel.
Are they coming home for summer break? If so, this is an ideal time to seek family counseling. Find a counselor in your area that specializes in substance abuse issues. Try to find someone you think your daughter’s would be open to speaking with. I would not approach your daughter(s) as if they are being punished with counseling because you think she has an alcohol problem. This may result in defensiveness and unwillingness to go to counseling. Instead, say that you are struggling with this transition time regarding their college years and that you have some concerns you would like to talk about as a family. Your attitude should be one of concern and not accusatory. Do not make a big deal of it. Just say that it is something you would like to try for a few visits.
If your daughter seems remorseful and is willing to open up to you, go ahead and share your concerns directly with her. Regardless, it is important for her to get counseling regarding the anger that is being released during these drunken episodes.
You can follow this link for more information on binge drinking
I am a Mental Health Counselor who is licensed in both New York (LMHC) and North Carolina (LCMHC). I have been working in the Mental Health field since 2015. I have worked in a residential setting, an outpatient program and an inpatient addictions program. I began working in Long Island, NY and then in Guelph, Ontario after moving to Canada. I have since settled in North Carolina. I have experience working with various stages of addiction, depression, anxiety, mood disorders, trauma, stages of life concerns and relationship concerns.
I tend to use a person-centered approach which simply means that I meet you where you are and work collaboratively to help you identify and work towards accomplishing goals. I will often pull from CBT when appropriate. I do encourage use of mindfulness and meditation and practice these skills in my own life. I believe in treating everyone with respect, sensitivity and compassion.
I recognize that reaching out for help is hard and commend you for taking the first step. We have professionals available who would be happy to help you move closer to reaching your goals related to your drinking concerns. You may reach these professionals by calling 877-322-2694.