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My Sanctuary

Old 01-22-2011, 04:07 PM
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Smile My Sanctuary

I would like to start by saying that I am going through a period of personal change. In my family, I have been the one to care for my mother, stick up for her and tell everyone that she will get better at some point. I would be the one to pick her up from the police station when she got arrested (very humiliating), drive her (damaged) car home when she couldn't anymore. Support her emotionally even when she was totally blitzed. Deal with her fits of unfounded rage when she was drunk and weathering the countless storms of her absurd insults and accusations.
Now I'm slowly but surely beginning to realize that the likelihood of her condition to improve is actually very slim, that I need to grab the reigns of my own life and that it's ok for me not to come home every weekend and that I don't have to feel guilty about it when I don't (I am 22 and go to college, I live about 45 mins away from home). That doesn't change the fact that it is still very difficult for me to distance myself from my mother, who, despite all her personal issues, is still a wonderfully loving, intelligent and simply a great person. I still sometimes feel that I'm abandoning her and that is very difficult. I also know that it will always be tough for me to watch this beautiful and once successful woman go under like a sinking ship. I will always love her and be there for her, but she will drag me down with her if I stay as close as I was even just a few weeks ago.

That is where you (together with the help of my shrink) come in. I find it empowering to read the stories of people dealing with loved ones that turn their lives upside down and yet are still capable living them with some degree of enjoyment. And that (some of) you are even able to continue to love those crazy alcoholics in spite of all that. It takes a lot of thought and contemplation to realize that distancing yourself does not automatically mean severing all ties and burning bridges. It takes a lot of energy to deal with problems that aren't yours, and that honestly you should not even have to worry about in the first place. It is exhausting to feel the weight of all those issues coming down on you while you feel that crushing force. In fact to me that becomes so tiring at times that there are days where it is hard for me to wake up in the morning. But every time that happens I turn on my computer and and visit this website, and gather inspiration from people that are fiercely working on evaluating and drawing up their boundaries, and taking the advice from those that have already done so. I'm also still working on that.

So thank you everyone! I believe that as friends and family members of alcoholics, we all deserve a pat on the back!
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Old 01-22-2011, 04:36 PM
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That doesn't change the fact that it is still very difficult for me to distance myself from my mother, who, despite all her personal issues, is still a wonderfully loving, intelligent and simply a great person. I still sometimes feel that I'm abandoning her and that is very difficult.
Smithers,

Have you tried any meetings? Like AlAnon, or Adult Children of Alcoholics.
AlAnon will help you to detach with love. Still love your mother, but not be a witness to her personal destruction.
I hope you find a way to balance the two.
You sound like a wonderful, loving caring daughter. Your mother is very lucky to have you.
My father was an alcoholic, and after he and my mother divorced, I rarely saw him.
When I did see him, even as an adult, he scared me.

Beth
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Old 01-23-2011, 02:21 PM
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Thanks Wicked,
I'm a son, actually
I actually looked into Al-Anon and they do seem to be in my area, I suppose I will give them a call and see if I can attend a session. I guess it wouldn't hurt to get some more specialized help in all this.
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Old 01-23-2011, 02:48 PM
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I'm a son, actually
oops, i am sorry.
you are a wonderful son.
yes, try a few meetings and maybe some different ones where you can get a feel for it.
it is fantastic to be in a room full of people who get you.

Beth
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Old 01-23-2011, 02:56 PM
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Originally Posted by wicked View Post
oops, i am sorry.
you are a wonderful son.
LOL, I was reading his old threads, figuring Beth MUST be right about the daughter thing, but wondering where she got it.

See how much I trust ya, Beth? I'd sooner doubt myself!
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Old 01-23-2011, 03:00 PM
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See how much I trust ya, Beth? I'd sooner doubt myself!


what's kinda funny is i used to get all uptight when people would assume i was the "dependent" in the Army because i am a female.
<snicker>
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Old 01-23-2011, 03:45 PM
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Hmm.. upon reading my previous posts (and this one as well) I can see where that came from. I guess emotional outbursts are more likely to come from a girl (no offense to female readers ).
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Old 01-23-2011, 03:49 PM
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you know, i dont know if you are old enough to remember smithers,
but there was a funny show called "WKRP in Cincinnati"
And, one of the actresses was named Jan Smithers (I think).
I wonder if that affected my idea?
Just my old memories trotting through my brain.
Sigh.......
trying to be an immature 32 year old in a 51 year old body and brain.

Beth
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