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Old 04-29-2003, 03:39 PM
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JT
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How many of you...

...have checked out Adult Child of Alcoholic issues, or meetings or books?? I am curious. My father is an alcoholic and sober for 28 years. My mother was/is a major co-doormat. It is a side of me that I have given lip service to but never really explored.

Thoughts?
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Old 04-29-2003, 04:42 PM
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Adult Childern

Just Tired,
My parents, by all the quacking I heard were both alcoholics....Today I know they didn't become that just to make my life miserable...but when I started recovery, I came because I was given the wrong tools to live with as a child...peace at any price for one...I didn't know then that my H.P. was doing for me what I couldn't do for myself...He knew that someday I would need Al-Anon just to survive and later to learn how to live MY life using different tools...Yes, the disease, in my opinon, is multi genersional (?) my parents gave me the best they were able to by the light they had to see by....back then I could blame ALL my unacceptable behavior on them......
I didn't know when I came in to Al-Anon that I would need to work the program because of a spouse and a sons drinking and using..

Today, Al-Anon is my life line to being happy, joyous, and free no matter what others are doing ...I can take the magnifing glass off them and look at the things I need to change in me...

As always, take what you can use and leave the rest...
You are such a mircle in progress, JT...I only wish I had your sense of humor...That's probably why my sponsor keeps telling me to lighten up and not take myself so seriously...
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Old 04-29-2003, 07:16 PM
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Just Tiered
havent realy explored it deeply, i have" hope for today" book
that's about it. My issues with alcoholic father were mingled with
the death of my mother when i was 12 and she was only 42.
my fathers heaviest drinking came after that.
I have analized myself to a point, why i am the way i am etc..
I have never been a doormat and dont remember my mother being one, but my dad's rages at times did effect me to use
on my own children when they were young,I'm ashamed of but
its the way i knew then.
Today i see things in a way i never did before alanon.
I can also forgive myself.
love
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Old 04-29-2003, 07:34 PM
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My dad was an alcoholic and I have been to a couple of ACOA thingys and read up a bit. I never really glommed onto it and I guess I don't feel like his drinking was all that earth shaking in my life. I have described him before, as not just a functioning alcoholic, but a thriving alcoholic. He ruined his health and wasn't around a lot when we were kids, but was a great provider and was loving, responsible and generous. Compared to any other Dad I knew, he was aces. It probably laid the groundwork for my accepting that alcohol and drug use were acceptable and normal, and not realizing what havoc could be wrought. Boy howdy that confusion is all cleared up.
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Old 04-29-2003, 07:41 PM
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Hi JT,

I've explored it quite a bit, b/c it's the foundation of who I am. My dad didn't find recovery until after I left home, and he was an alcoholic for all of my childhood. My dad has been in recovery for 12 years, but my mom is still very codependent. My relationship with my husband before I found recovery was pretty much a mirror of the relationship I witnessed b/t my mom and dad. Even now, those patterns are still very firmly etched in me.

You might check out the book "Perfect Daughters" by Robert J. Ackerman. It deals extensively with adult daughters of alcoholics.

Hugs,
JG
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Old 04-29-2003, 07:47 PM
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JT,

I have done quite a bit of reading etc on the subject. It was one of the things that ultimately led me to Al Anon! People who grow up in alcoholism develop their own coping mechanisms, things that help them get thru and survive. They often take their experiences, their definitions etc and repeat the patterns as they become parents - and the generational nature of this disease continues.

For me, Al Anon works. It has helped me to understand my past, put things in their proper perspective, and to learn new ways of coping and moving forward in my life. For others, I suppose ACOA is more helpful. Awarenenss, Acceptance, Action. Thats what its all about for me!

HUGS
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Old 04-29-2003, 08:03 PM
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JT, I have done some reading on the subject, but more to try to relate to my husband than myself. He grew up with both parents alcoholics and struggles with issues daily! However, since I have come to realize that I am married to an alcoholic I started looking harder at my childhood. My Dad is a raging alcoholic now, but growing up it was never an issue and had nothing to do with my parents divorce! I was the kid who watched families falling apart around me and WISHED that my family wasn't so perfect
Imagine that I actually wished that we weren't so perfect. Evidentally with or without the alcohol, the behavorial tendencies are still there. My Dad was a great provider, never missed work, helped all his friends, everyone loved him, but my Mom took care of everything. I mean she handled PTO, practices, dinner, household chores, finances, doctor visits etc, etc. She was a stay home Mom and he worked 7-3 at GM. When I look closely I see the enabling behavior of my Mom even though with Dad at the time is wasn't about drinking.

Now his life revolves around alcohol and I married an alcoholic! How weird is that I haven't really found answers, just more questions!

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Old 04-29-2003, 08:50 PM
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Hi JT,

i have explored this topic in depth even though my parents are not alcoholics, it was for my recovery. There were other addictive and dysfunctional behaviors however. In any event, it lead me to alanon and for that, I am grateful.

What worked for me was to do adult child therapy for a couple of yrs. All I have to say is AMAZING. There's a lot of answers in there. It definitely had a huge impact on my life. I tried ACOA meetings but, sorry for the bluntness, I found them to be very winey. There was a lot of complaining about 30, 40 yrs ago. I am more results oriented than that. I like to look at what happened, how it affected me, and be able to identify the behaviors that I posess that gets in the way of my relationships TODAY so I can understand them, work through them, and kiss them good ridance.
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Old 04-29-2003, 08:59 PM
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I went to ACOA for a long time. My father drank after work every night, but I still don't know if he was ever drunk or not. What I do know is that I grew up in a very disfuntional family and I fit right in with the ACOA group. It was during the time when I was growing in leaps and bounds and coming out of severe denial and it was very helpful to me just to be with others who understood.

My mother was severely codependent.
 
Old 04-29-2003, 09:31 PM
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My parents are not Alcoholics, though my "family" was a very dysfunctional one as I grew up. It's weird because I recognize things here and there that would lead me to think that they WERE addicts! How weird is that!? I guess I just recognize the huge codependancy issues my mother had / has.
But my grandparents WERE alcoholics, and they died BECAUSE of their disease. They never got sober, and so many people were hugely effected by their behaiors. They had 4 children (my mother was the oldest), and each one has MAJOR issues be cause of the alcoholism, and their OWN codependancy etc. It makes me wonder if Codependancy is a learned trait? Did I learn these coping mechanisms from my own mother? I wouldn't doubt it...
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Old 04-30-2003, 09:54 AM
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JT
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Thanks,

I don't have any recollection of drunken disfuctional behavior. All my life my dad "worked nights" so why would I think it wierd that he was not at home when I went to bed and sleeping late so we had to be quiet. Was it everyone's parents who protected your tender psychie at the age of 4? Only to blurt out the awful truth sometime much later?? What is up with that?? Or could it be that I myself was in such denial that I did not see what was clearly going on around me? After I was grown of course. If that is the case my denial ran alot deeper than I have thought until now.

Being results oriented myself I think I may do some reading in the interest of knowing me better and what makes me tick. I have long ago come to terms with the fact that our parents do the best they know how to do. I have seen the book "Perfect Daughters". I will pick it up.

Alot of what everyone said makes a ton of sense...not being given the correct tools as a child. It took me 40 years of fumbling about and repeated raps on the head by my HP to get me into Alanon. I didn't hear the whispers...He needed a megaphone but I finally heard...

Hugs,
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Old 05-03-2003, 07:55 AM
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My father drank too, was he an alcohalic, I don't know. He was a hard working functioning man, not that that makes a difference. Is my mom the poster woman for codependency, YES!! Did I come from a dysfunctial home...didn't we all?

I think understand family, where we came from, how we fit in the dynamics of it all is so very important to my recovery and to me being a healthy functioning woman and not repeating history.
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