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Bereavements related to drugs and alcohol share many similar features, and families often report experiencing common feelings and thoughts – but there are differences e.g. the legality of drugs v alcohol. Find information specific to alcohol and how these bereavements can differ here.


Adfam is the national charity working to improve life for families affected by drugs and alcohol. Our vision We want anyone affected by someone else’s drug or alcohol use to have the chance to benefit from healthy relationships, be part of a loving and supportive family and enjoy mental and physical wellbeing.

Falling in love with an alcoholic and losing him

I met my late boyfriend in July 2006. I was travelling in Canada.  He was a good person with a big heart, kind and funny and I think the only issue was he liked to have a drink, which was not an issue at that time.

After his death I was just in total shock

My dad’s alcohol use got worse through my teens as he moved in with his partner, who herself was/became an alcoholic, and my relationship with him suffered badly. It’s hard to connect meaningfully with someone who is drunk whenever you interact, and he was drunk almost every time we stayed with him while we were in secondary school. On the odd occasion he was sober, I got along with him very well. We had similar senses of humour and enjoyed spending time together.