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Help with my Daughter.

Old 08-06-2010, 01:13 PM
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Help with my Daughter.

My lovely smart daughter still lives with me (at age 32). She is a binge drinker and works part time at a bar. Shows no interest in doing anything else despite a college degree and claims she's "content". I love her dearly but am so tired and sad of having a front row seat to her circus of a life. I have offered to go with her to get help but she says she's not quitting. This is such a brief overview it doesn't really do it justice. I am ready to have her move out we are not combative but I've just had enough this has been on and off for 13 yrs. Input please.
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Old 08-06-2010, 01:19 PM
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Why wouldn't she be content? She has a nice home and only works part time, and can drink whenever she wants. She has virtually no responsibilities. While I can't tell you what to do, I can tell you what I would do. I would let a little reality into the picture. She would be given 30 days to find a new place to live. Period. Whether she drinks or not, she is 32 years old and it is well past time that she learned to be responsible for herself and you have a right to enjoy your home without someone else abusing your hospitality.
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Old 08-06-2010, 01:29 PM
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Despite everything you have tried to do, you must realize that some people are happy with less rather than more. You could kick her out like suki said, but that won't change a thing, she will simply be doing the same thing in a different location.
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Old 08-06-2010, 01:32 PM
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Originally Posted by TheEnd View Post
Despite everything you have tried to do, you must realize that some people are happy with less rather than more. You could kick her out like suki said, but that won't change a thing, she will simply be doing the same thing in a different location.
Possibly, but at least Mom won't have a front row seat to the drama and the binges. This isn't so much about changing the daughter, but about supporting Carmen.
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Old 08-06-2010, 01:33 PM
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Originally Posted by suki44883 View Post
possibly, but at least mom won't have a front row seat to the drama and the binges. This isn't so much about changing the daughter, but about supporting carmen.
agree!!
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Old 08-06-2010, 01:34 PM
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In my heart I know you're right, I feel I have created a lot of this by not putting my foot down years ago, I did actually tell her a week ago that it was time for her to get help and that if she opted not to then it was time to go (after several days straight of drinking). Now I have to follow through and I know she will probably just move in with one of her drinking buddies (because at least they don't judge her as she likes to remind me) She is such a lovely person but has lost track of her life completely, don't know how to help her anymore.
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Old 08-06-2010, 01:39 PM
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Originally Posted by carmen2 View Post
In my heart I know you're right, I feel I have created a lot of this by not putting my foot down years ago, I did actually tell her a week ago that it was time for her to get help and that if she opted not to then it was time to go (after several days straight of drinking). Now I have to follow through and I know she will probably just move in with one of her drinking buddies (because at least they don't judge her as she likes to remind me) She is such a lovely person but has lost track of her life completely, don't know how to help her anymore.
As much as we love our kids, once they become adults, we really aren't doing them any favors by enabling them to sluff off. If she can move in with her friends, that's great and you could even shorten the time frame from 30 days to a week or so. But, you are right, since you gave her the ultimatum, you do need to follow through. Otherwise, she will walk all over you. Nothing personal against her, that just the way they are if you don't stand up for yourself. Hang in there and be strong. She needs to move on and decide what she wants to do with her life and you need to take care of you.
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Old 08-06-2010, 01:52 PM
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Carmen2 -

WELCOME TO SR! It's great to have you here! Most people "lurk", or hang out and read quite a bit before posting. You may have been too, and it's great to see you posting!

Suggestions to new comers often include reading the "stickies" on top of the forum. These can be of great help!

Also, have you tried AlAnon? This is a wonderful, supportive place to augment your time on the SR forum.

Above all, here are the 3 C's that are so important for your well being:

you didn't CAUSE your daughter's alcohol issues
you can't CONTROL it
you can't CURE it

For your own well being, it's best to take care of YOU, and be gentle on yourself. Keep posting... we're glad you're here!
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Old 08-06-2010, 04:50 PM
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If she weren't drinking ... at her age it is probably wise to make it so that she has to live on her own in life with all the responsibility of an adult.
Insisting that she make the transition seems healthy for both of you.
There are plenty of rooms for rent in the homes of people her own age.
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Old 08-06-2010, 05:02 PM
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Regardless if she is drinking or not, at her age she should be on her own, living in her own place.

To me, you are not helping her, you are stunting her growth, you have spoiled her and made is her lazy and unproductive.

You raised her, now let her fly, you've done your job now let her do hers...become an adult and take care of herself.
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Old 08-06-2010, 08:45 PM
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Originally Posted by dollydo View Post
Regardless if she is drinking or not, at her age she should be on her own, living in her own place.

To me, you are not helping her, you are stunting her growth, you have spoiled her and made is her lazy and unproductive.

You raised her, now let her fly, you've done your job now let her do hers...become an adult and take care of herself.
When I was new to recovery, I was welcomed by understanding and compassionate people who were further down the road in recovery.

They did not judge, they did not tell me what they perceived as my shortcomings. They knew I was hurting, and looking for support.

Instead, they shared their own personal experiences, strength, and hope with me.

Honestly, I cringed when I read this response.

My heart hurts for anyone new who comes to find support because they too have been affected by alcoholism, just like me.

It's an ugly painful disease that respects no boundaries, including those who love an alcoholic.

A little compassion and warmth could go a long way for a newcomer.

It surely did for me when I was new, and I will never forget the kindness of the people who reached out to me when I was new.
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Old 08-06-2010, 09:01 PM
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I have a soon-to-be 24 y/o son who I am afraid will wind up in similar circumstances. He isn't an addict, but he suffers from depression and anxiety and has never held a job that lasted longer than three months. He is living with his dad, who hasn't had the heart to draw the line in the sand just yet.

I've given my opinion about that, but he is an adult and he isn't living at MY house, so there isn't much I can do. I'm not the one who would have to enforce the "tough love" so it's hard for me to be critical of his dad.

After being a mom for thirty years, you deserve to have your home to yourself again, particularly when your daughter's behavior is causing you distress.

Sounds like she will have a roof over her head one way or another, and it's up to her whether she wants to recover from her drinking problem. There's no way to force an epiphany on her, but you don't have to make it easy for her to live this way by allowing it to continue while she lives in your house.
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Old 08-06-2010, 09:17 PM
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Carmen,

My exA used to say I was "judgmental" all the time. It hurt so much, and I doubted myself. It took a long time for me to realize that it wasn't being judgmental so much as it was discerning what I wanted to choose for my life, what I wanted and needed my life to look like so that I wasn't spending all of my time making it about drinking and the surrounding crazy-making.

What do you need for you? After you know that, all the rest will fall into place over time.

It's a process...I highly recommend Alanon for support, along with reading materials and this forum. I've come a long, long way since I began posting just 6 months ago. When I first came to this site I was in so much pain I could hardly think.

And remember to take deep breaths~it truly helps.

Hugs,
posie
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Old 08-06-2010, 10:04 PM
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Hello Carmen.

I talked about this with a therapist. I live with a guy but, my home is not a safe place to recharge, but a place of tensions and stress. I, just like you, deserve a place where I feel peace and relaxation, life out there is tough. Constant stress affects our emotional and physical health.

Have you gone to a therapist? Usually I do things by myself, and I make many mistakes, I repeat the same hurting thought over and over and over, and suffer a great deal.

I am learning to ask for help and it is priceless, to be able to talk to someone who gets it and is prepared to give you advice, scold you, leave you homework, relax you, give you exercises to "shake" what you are carrying.. today I arrived crying, and left laughing... if you can share with a therapist, she or he will make you feel much better, safer, stronger, healthier while you start putting boundaries and improving your life style.

The rewards are priceless.

Hugs
Tc999
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Old 08-07-2010, 06:58 AM
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Thank you all so much for all your wisdom and support I couldn't wait to long on and get some sanity. I got up this morning at 7.30 and my daughter was still drunk from last night and she drove home (again). She had obligations today to work a car wash for cancer and help set up a huge yard sale, obviously that's not happening. We spoke briefly (no point arguing with a drunk) I told her please stop I love you I will help you before you get hurt or hurt someone else. She said oh my god not all this drama again it's not a big deal but you don't have to worry because I'm getting out of here.
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Old 08-07-2010, 08:08 AM
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Carmen dear, please don't frustrate yourself trying to make her stop. In the last few weeks before I left my AH, I'd started to detach from him. I realized nothing I said, or did, or tried to manipulate would make him change. I was only hurting myself by trying. He would always put alcohol before me, it was his first love. And it turned him into a blame shifting monster. So I stopped asking him to stop drinking, and stopped responding to his angry tirades. All he got from me, whether I agreed with him or not, was "uh huh" or "okay". I went to AlAnon one or two times a week, got a counselor, and talked to my medical doctor about antidepressant meds. It's taken a while, but I'm soooo much better today than I was in November of last year.

Sweetie... please take care of yourself. You're worth so much, and don't need to be baby sitting a 30 year old drunk.
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Old 08-07-2010, 08:46 AM
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I agree with Tigger, to quote Billy Joel, "You should never argue with a crazy mi-mi-mi-mi-mind." All it does is feed their self-pity and feeling of being attacked.

She KNOWS you want her to quit drinking. Saying it over and over isn't going to make her stop. She won't stop until she has her own reasons for wanting to.

Keep logging on, and you might try hitting an Al-Anon meeting. GREAT support, and you will get some excellent ideas about how to detach from her so you can do what you need to do without giving her more fuel for resentment.
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Old 08-07-2010, 09:14 AM
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Hi Carmen,

My alcoholic sister has been drinking for 15 years now and has no plans to stop (she is 42). She has lost everything. She is living with my parents who continue to enable her. Their decision to enable her is costing them their retirement funds, peace of mind, relationship with their other adult children, and (quite possibly) their relationship together. It is a no-win situation, no matter how much they think they are "helping" her.
Your daughter is content because she has no reason to change her lifestyle; she has a roof over her head, doesn't really have to support herself, and can drink without consequences.

One thing that I've learned here and through therapy that has been tremendously helpful: actions speak louder than words, and alcoholics will not hear your words, no matter how many times you say them or beg, plead, or threaten.

I hope that you will find the strength to put yourself first. Sending you hugs.
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Old 08-07-2010, 12:04 PM
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Thank you all again for your kindness and wisdom and boy do I need the hugs. I was so proud when she went back to school several years ago and got a degree but has since seemed paralyzed by the fear of change and no matter opportunity comes her way she finds a reason they wouldn't work for her. I divorced when she was around 12 but she and her brother have had a good life lots of love and support a few bumps in the road but no terrible hardships or abuse like some kids suffer, what the heck happened is there really nothing I can do for her? Thanks again for sharing your experience.
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Old 08-07-2010, 12:37 PM
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About the only thing you can do FOR her is to lovingly stop making it easy for her to avoid change. She may find others to enable her, but you can't do anything about that.

It's very difficult to detach with love, but it can be done. You firmly set the boundaries, you don't allow yourself to be manipulated (and she almost certainly will try--by attempting to make you feel guilty, for example). You express your love for her at the same time.

You have to be prepared for her to be angry, to blame you for any problems she runs into, and you have to be strong enough to say, "I love you, but it's time for you to make your own choices."

You can avoid giving advice unless you are asked for it.

As I said, it's hard to do those things, so keep coming back here for support.
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