A DESPERATE grandmother whose daughter is battling alcoholism has called for people struggling with addiction to have their benefits stopped.

The woman, who does not wish to be identified and is referred to here as Teresa, told the County Gazette of her pain at the start of 2013.

Teresa, who lives in Taunton, said: “Christmas should have been full of fun and laughter in my daughter’s home. She was a beautiful and intelligent woman with two children. It all seemed too good to be true.

“My daughter is now an alcoholic. She no longer lives for her family but for her drink each and every day.

“She no longer takes pride in her appearance, the house is a mess and the bills are not being paid. Instead of looking her age she could easily be taken to be ten or 15 years older.

“The saddest thing is her children, who have had to witness this from their very early lives.

“We are broken as a family, not knowing what each day will bring. I’m told it is an illness.

“Maybe if she was not on benefits she would not have had the time and money to waste her life away.

“The benefits she gets every month work out to be £1,000 – there are decent hard-working people out there who do not earn this a month.

“All I can hope is that the Government will stop benefits for alcoholics and drug addicts if they do not try and get help.

“As a mother and a grandmother I am at the end of the road.”

A spokesman for Turning Point, which helps people with addiction issues in Taunton Deane and West Somerset, said: “We were sorry to hear of Teresa’s case.

“Alcoholism, also known as ‘alcohol dependence’, is a disease that includes alcohol craving and continued drinking despite repeated alcohol-related problems, such as losing a job or getting into trouble with the law.

“It includes four symptoms – craving drink, the inability to limit drinking, physical dependence on drink and an increased tolerance to alcohol.”

If you feel you need help for your drinking, speak to your GP or you can call Alcoholics Anonymous on 0845-769-7555 or Alcohol Concern on 0800-917-8282.