Am I enabling my brother
(Beaverton OR USA)
My brother is the worst alcoholic I've ever seen. He will relapse and within 3 weeks, stops eating, stops going to work (loses the job), and cycles between passing out and waking up to drink.
He's lived at my house 3 times over the past few years totaling 4.5 years. In that time, he relapsed 10 times. It always meant me taking time off work, finding rehab centers, and paying 1000s of dollars. He would get well and then 3 months later, be back to drinking.
I finally made him move for good 10 months ago and paid for him to stay in a sober men's house for 3 months. Again more money. He went missing in action and then I heard from him a few weeks later where he needed yet more money to stay in a sober house. He had a job but lost it. He has had 3 relapses in this 10 month period.
He finally got caught by the police and went to jail for drunk driving. I didn't know this until I got a call from a family member (the rest of the family never helps). So I had to pay quite a bit to get his car out of impound and sent money for a sober house which he never went to. He instead stayed at my sisters and drove her crazy. He called again and I sent a bunch of money for his stuff in storage and a real sober house this time.
I told him I am done after this. I may get stuck paying a few more months for the sober house, but if he relapses and loses this situation, I hope I'm really done.
I worry about him being on the street. But then again, I know I've enabled him with each relapse and he assumes I'll save him. I'm in my mid-60s and want to retire, but he's slowly eating up my retirement money.
Should I just let him fail the next time (nothing surprises me anymore with him - he likely will fail). How do I say NO if he's on the street? Then again, can I afford not to say NO?