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I just need to know everything will be okay

Old 07-16-2010, 08:10 PM
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I just need to know everything will be okay

I'm a twenty three going on twenty four daughter of an alcoholic father and sister of an alcoholic brother.

I can't talk about this with my mother or my sister or my friends because I always feel like I'm just going to upset them even more. But I just really don't know what to do anymore. My father started drinking even before my brother, who is now thirty six, was born. The problems between my mother and father have always been about that. About my dad not accepting he had a problem and wasting money we needed to eat. I'm not going to lie, I do resent my father for many things. For not taking care of us when I was little, for having to receive food from my aunts so we could eat. For having to wear my old shoes to school, they were a size too small and they hurt my feet. One of my uncles finally bought me some shoes when it became painfully obvious they were too small.

When my brother was around nineteen years old, my father got him a job and didn't even ask him if he wanted to continue with college. Because we needed the money, my brother started working and giving money to the house. But it was around that time that my father started offering him alcohol at parties. The place where my brother started working was filled with my father's drinking buddies. Months later my brother came home drunk. It started happening every few months and then every few weeks.

Years later when I was in high school, my brother was drinking almost every weekend and sometimes during the week. He used to take me to school since it was very far. Once, because I did not want my mother to worry, I didn't tell her my brother took me to school drunk or high, I couldn't tell. I stopped celebrating my birthdays at the age of fifteen because for the two years before that my dad came drunk and got into fights with my mom.
It was after my brother got into a car accident that my father began to change. The car was completely destroyed but my brother escaped with just a small scar. We really thought this would open his eyes and make him admit he had a problem but a few weeks later he was drinking again.

My father joined an AA group near our house and he really did stop drinking. My mother went to some meetings with him and I also went when he hit the twelve month mark. While they still had problems, my father was no longer drunk all the time and his violent outbursts were finally gone. It was just my brother. My father tried to get him to accompany him to one of the meetings but my brother would just get angry and say he didn't have a problem. He got into two more car accidents and yet he still kept drinking.

About four years ago my parents bought a house, it's a big house and my brother moved into the second floor, while I live with my parents on the third floor. My brother moved in with his girlfriend and we thought that since they were going to be together that he would finally stop drinking. He did, for a few months but then he started again. My father on the other hand, he started drinking as well, not like before but he keeps saying he won't do it again and yet he still does.

Throughout all this, it's my mother I'm worried about. She has been through so much. Dealing with my father, dealing with us being poor because of it when we were young, her own childhood, watching my brother like this. Sometimes I wish my brother could just go away. I don't want to know about him or what happens to him and yet I feel guilty for wanting this. I don't go out with my friends because I'm afraid of leaving my mother alone. I listen to her when she wants to vent because she has absolutely no one to talk to but sometimes I just don't want to listen to her. I want peace. I want to be okay. I graduated from college but my degree won't get me a good job at the moment. I work but that's all I do. Work, home, work. I fantasize about leaving the house and forgetting about everyone. I also want to leave with my mother. She says that she would leave but I know that she only stays because of my brother. We have tried talking, we have tried yelling.

I was actually going to attempt to drink in front of my brother so he could see. I've always been his favorite. We get along really well. We talk about soccer, we're very similar. So I got that thought into my head, that perhaps he would stop but I've been reading some of the material on the site and I know it won't. The advice is to leave things as they are. To stop enabling him. To detach ourselves from it. I think I can do it. I don't think my mother will.

My father...my father is another matter altogether. While his drinking causes problems, it's also what he has done. He has cheated on my mother even though he denies it. My mother of course is angry and sad about this. I've been talking about moving somewhere else, just the two of us. But the fear of never seeing them again, of my mother not being happy keeps me from doing this. After everything that has happened, after watching my dad and my brother like this since I was little, I'm tired.

My brother's girlfriend went to another state on vacation with her family so now my mother and I are worried he will drink even more because no one will be able to see him. He actually did get drunk yesterday. I went to look and there's a bottle near his computer. I don't know what to do. I see my mother cry and I don't let myself cry because I need to be strong for her.

I just need to know everything will be okay. That one day my brother will go back to being that man that once liked to play soccer and keep himself fit. I want him to have dinner with us without looking desperate because he wants to leave so he can drink. I want to see him smile more often. I want my father to realize he's harming us as well. I might seem heartless, but I really don't care about my dad like I should. Would I cry for him? Maybe. But he has made it clear that if he drinks, he only harms himself. He went to AA meetings, he knows this is not true.

I just want to know that things can get better.
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Old 07-16-2010, 08:25 PM
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Things can get better, but they may not; at least not for your father or your brother. They have to be the ones who want help. You can't control them or your mother. You can escape the chaos though. What can you do for yourself, to improve your life?
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Old 07-16-2010, 08:39 PM
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Alanon has really helped me to learn what I can and can't control..it is a family disease and everyone in the family needs recover. That being said you can only be in charge of your recovery! It will give you different coping skills than what you learned growing up in a home w/alcoholism.
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Old 07-16-2010, 10:35 PM
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welcome to sober recovery. for right now, i can only say that there is an awful lot to learn. if you could spend some time hanging out here, reading, posting, and most importantly, listening, i believe it will do you a world of good. this is a heartache that there really is a way out of.
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Old 07-17-2010, 11:45 AM
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Originally Posted by boyblue View Post
I'm not going to lie, I do resent my father for many things. For not taking care of us when I was little, for having to receive food from my aunts so we could eat. For having to wear my old shoes to school, they were a size too small and they hurt my feet. One of my uncles finally bought me some shoes when it became painfully obvious they were too small.
I'm so sorry your childhood was taken away from you by this disease. It happens to far too many children. I think it is natural for you to feel resentment and anger.


About four years ago my parents bought a house, it's a big house and my brother moved into the second floor, while I live with my parents on the third floor. My brother moved in with his girlfriend and we thought that since they were going to be together that he would finally stop drinking. He did, for a few months but then he started again. My father on the other hand, he started drinking as well, not like before but he keeps saying he won't do it again and yet he still does.
This must be really hard for you - living with TWO alcoholics in the house. Have you considered moving out? Do you have the financial means to do so? You've been in a toxic environment since you were a child...your father and brother are alcoholics, and your mother is deeply codependent and unable to stop enabling them. This is a recipe for continued misery if you don't get out of there and find a healthy environment for yourself.

Throughout all this, it's my mother I'm worried about. She has been through so much. Dealing with my father, dealing with us being poor because of it when we were young, her own childhood, watching my brother like this.
The only person you can control or change is yourself. Do you not feel any resentment towards your MOTHER? I would...she is the sane, normal parent, yet she did NOTHING to remove you from your toxic situation throughout your whole childhood.

We make our choices...my mom used to say "you made your bed, you lie in it." Your mother chose to stay, despite what your father and brother's behavior was putting you through. I certainly wouldn't be worried about her....she could leave, or throw your dad AND your brother out at any time. She chooses not to, because she is JUST AS SICK AS THEY ARE.

On SR, this is why we say "alcoholism is a FAMILY disease."


I also want to leave with my mother. She says that she would leave but I know that she only stays because of my brother. We have tried talking, we have tried yelling.
You can't control your mother.

Talking...yelling...none of that is going to make a whit of difference to the alcoholic. An alcoholic will not get help until he/she hits bottom and is ready to do so.

Your mom may not realize it, but she is keeping your dad and brother in their disease by enabling them.

I suggest you read the stickies on this site. "Codependent No More" is a great book I highly suggest you read.

Go to al-anon...seriously. I was in a 3 yr toxic, off and on rel'ship with an alcoholic...even in that short amount of time, I felt traumatized and damaged. I can't imagine what you and your mom are going thru. If you can convince your mom to go to a meeting with you, so much the better.

I CANNOT STRESS THAT ENOUGH. Al-anon has been a godsend for me and many others on this forum.

So I got that thought into my head, that perhaps he would stop but I've been reading some of the material on the site and I know it won't.
Nope, you're right. Absolutely nothing you can say or do will help, other than to STOP ENABLING HIM.

Helping vs. enabling: Helping means, you do for someone what they cannot do for themselves. Enabling: doing something for someone that they are perfectly capable of doing for themselves.

My brother's girlfriend went to another state on vacation with her family so now my mother and I are worried he will drink even more because no one will be able to see him.
NO ONE...not you, not your mother, not your girlfriend...have any power whatsoever over your brother's drinking. Trying to get him to change is only going to make you insane. It's codependency, plain and simple. The first step you learn in al-anon is:

"I am powerless over alcohol. I am powerless over other people."

It's very liberating when you fully accept that first step.

I just need to know everything will be okay. That one day my brother will go back to being that man that once liked to play soccer and keep himself fit.
No one can promise or guarantee your brother will get help. Do you know how things can get better for you? If you stop focusing so much on your brother and father, and focus on the only person you can change or control: yourself.

Al-anon will help you do this.
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Old 07-17-2010, 12:00 PM
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AL ANON was my god sent also...but I did learn this...the 1ST meeting

the three Cs
1)YOU did not cause this
2) YOU cant cure it
3) and YOU cant control it


If you did not learn anything here today...I hope you learn THIS
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