How to help a good neighbor who has a drinking problem

Such a sad story. Every since I lived in my home I knew something wasn't okay with my neighbor. She always seemed a little odd, but isn't every one in their own way? Neighbors for 25 plus years. Nothing to complain about. Always spoke. Exchanged family stories, plant knowledge etc.. Even opened up to me about her life with her husband and some horrible things that have taken place. I prayed for her and hoped she would know what to do or who to turn to in desperate times.

I knew she used alcohol as a drug and often became irrational when she was using. She would scream at me and not make sense. However I always knew she would apologize when she was sober and realized what she had done. No harm done. I am a very forgiving person and know what drugs and alcohol can do to a person. I lost my own sister from Hep C because she was a heroin user.

About a year or so ago my neighbor was running around her back yard grunting, growling, barking and just seemed very upset. My husband asked her was everything ok. She said no it's not. You stupid SOB. You killed my mothers tree. You SOB. You are the worst neighbor in the world. She continued and the obscenities became even more intense and vulgar. My children were outside. So I stepped out to ask them to come inside, which of course caused her to chime in and yell at me. I replied. I want you to know I am praying for you and I hope you are ok. That seemed to make her even more upset. SO I just closed the door and went into the house.

She continued to yell at my husband and asked him to not speak to her ever again. We of course are trying to comply with her request. However it has just now been a year and she was very drunk one a night and came outside and started taking pictures of us and yelling things at us again. Other neighbors were forced to call the police. When they arrived she of course was ranting, raving and making no sense. The officer asked her if she had been drinking; she replied "I had a beer". Then she turned and tried to take pictures of the officer. He told her he would lock her up if she continued to harass us or him. She replied, you know them don't you. He said who are you talking about. It took approximately 45 minutes and she finally complied and went into her home.

I feel so sorry for her. I wish I could help her. I just don't know how. I hope anyone who has any advice can help me. I am very afraid she is going to die an early death of alcohol poisoning or liver damage. She has two children who live out of state and I really want to let them know but am very afraid it is not my place. Anyone with any advice, please send it my way.

Comments for How to help a good neighbor who has a drinking problem

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Aug 15, 2021
Needing Boundaries
by: Anonymous

For the last 10 years, I have been neighbors with a woman (Julie) who lives across the street from me and is a binge drinker. When she's sober she is pleasant and respectful, but when she's on a binge she crosses boundaries and becomes intrusive. A few weeks ago she came over to my house and mentioned that she thinks I should hire someone to trim back my hedges and prune my fruit tree. At that point I realized she was already tipsy, and I gently reminded her that I have landscaper come by twice a month to care for my yard and that my property is well kept. A few days passed, and as I'm returning home from work, I see a young man in my front yard with a chainsaw trimming off branches on my fruit tree. Immediately I told him to stop trimming and asked who he was; he introduced himself and said that my neighbor Julie had hired him to clean up my yard and prune everything back. That afternoon, I thanked her for wanting to help me out, but I didn't want her to hire someone to tend to my property especially because I liked it they way it was originally. She was completely drunk and had no idea what I was talking about, she then shut the door in my face...
My answer to this problem is that I am having a fence put around my property - hopefully that will help set a boundary with her. Sadly, I think when Julie becomes lonely and bored, she drinks a lot. I wish I could talk with her about her drinking and help her out, but she seems very private when she's sober...

Jul 24, 2021
My Neighbor
by: Anonymous

I also have a neighbor like that,it's very sad.Lately every time I'm doing yardwork he wants to talk.He wants me to find him a job,and asks me to do his home repairs and cleaning.He's very kind,but he's becoming really needy.Sometimes I see him looking through the fence when he sees me outside,and I actually end up going back in my house.Theres really nothing I can do about it,just felt like venting...because I was in my backyard and he was looking through the fence,he's lonely,but I'm busy with my own life,and don't feel like chatting with a drunk...so I've been really avoiduiing him lately.I guess I'm mean.

Jun 10, 2021
I have a neighbor like that too
by: Annoyed in Salem

I have a neighbor like that as well. His wife kicked him out but he keeps coming back at 3 in the morning most nights and the cops show up every time because he yells a lot, wakes the neighbors up and threatens his wife in a drunken stupor, hence the cops showing up. The only thing good in this is they have no children at home. I feel bad for both of them; her, for putting up with him, and him, because he does not see how bad his problem really is and won't get help. I know my other neighbors are sick of him and call the police often because of the domestic disturbances he creates every time. The few times I have run into him during the day he was drunk. I would really like to see him get help, not just for him but for his wife who has to put up with it constantly. How do you help a person like that?

Jun 19, 2018
Inconsiderate comments
by: Anonymous

A bit unfair to be honest! No one chooses to be a drunk. Unfortunate circumstances! If you don’t want to help keep your thoughts to yourself and let people who can make a difference assist.

May 25, 2018
Very sad
by: Anonymous

Boy oh boy sounds very familiar. Picks and harasses us when shes loaded. Not a nice living environment at all. All our neighbors know what she's like. Too bad.

Jun 13, 2017
pathetic
by: Anonymous

Drunks are drunks..u cant help them. They need to help themselves! I have a lovely drunk neighbor that causes so much grief. She smashed her car into a neighbor's parked truck. Could have killed a child! No sympathy for this spoiled rotten daddy's girl!

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