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October 6, 2003


Question from Chicago, Illinois, USA:

My children's father is a 37 year old, African-American male with type 2 diabetes whose paternal grandmother died from complications of diabetes. He went into a severe depression and refuses to take his medication or even monitor his blood levels. He won't refrain from sugar, and I'm afraid he has a death wish. Now, he has turned to consuming alcohol on a daily basis at high volumes. Basically, he gets drunk every day. To add to this, he has been using ecstasy which has escalated to regular cocaine abuse as well. We have a two year old, and I'm five months pregnant with our second child. I'm afraid they won't have a father for very long. As you can see, I am emotionally, mentally and physically drained from his drama. I have shut-down personally because aside from all this, you can add multitudes of unprotected affairs to the mix. We are not married so I need to know what I can expect of him and what, if anything, I can do for him. Is he speeding up the death process? Does he seem to have a death wish? How long/short will his life be if he doesn't change his behavior? How do I give him help if he doesn't seem to want it? Do I begin to let go emotionally so I can be there for my sons or is there any recourse for him?


Your description of his behavior sounds abnormal. He may depressed and he is treating it in the short-term with substances of abuse. He clearly cannot take care of himself when he is abusing the other drugs. The worst part is that he either needs to find the need to help himself from within or have others show him the way. I hope he gets care for himself before it is too late.


[Editor’s comment: Please be sure to share your concerns with his physician. Also, you should investigate Al-Anon for yourself and the kids.