DEAR ABBY: I live with two of my best friends. We get along great because we respect each other's personal space and business. My problem is my roommate "Michelle" drinks alone in our apartment. She consumes eight to 12 alcoholic beverages in an evening. She does this once a week, usually during the week. The next morning she'll complain that she's "sick" when she has to get up for work, but I know she's hung over.
Our other roommate spends little time at our place and doesn't want to speak to her about this, even though he agrees she has a problem.
How should I approach Michelle about this? I'm afraid if I say anything she'll think I'm accusing her of being an alcoholic. I want to maintain peace in our home, but I'm worried about her. Any suggestions for how I should handle this? -- FEARFUL IN FAIRBORN, OHIO
DEAR FEARFUL: You are right to be concerned about Michelle. If she isn't an alcoholic, she is well on her way to becoming one. From your description, she is bingeing on a regular basis.
The way to approach her is to tell her you're worried. Eight to 12 drinks in an evening is a huge amount of alcohol. And if she's going to work hung over, it is already having a negative impact on her job.
Offer to attend an AA meeting with Michelle. (They are listed in most telephone directories.) When you get there you'll find pamphlets are available that contain a self-test people can take to determine whether they need help. I know for sure she will have to answer yes to at least one of the questions -- "Do you wish people would stop nagging you about your drinking?" -- because by the time you get there, you will have nagged her.