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Dad wouldn't lie to me, would he?

Old 08-21-2012, 10:20 PM
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Dad wouldn't lie to me, would he?

Yes, this was a question my 13 year old threw at me tonight. We were sitting on the back porch, watching a storm, and feeling the rain as it splattered on our legs. I opened up a conversation about dad and his drinking and how my son felt about it. I asked him if he wanted to try AlaTeen or go to therapy. We talked about Bible stories, problems he's had with friends, and of course about dad stuff.

He told me that dad's not going to be drinking anymore anyway....."Because he told me so" were the words my son used. He said he asked my AH about the drinking and that my AH said, "I'm done drinking. I will not ever drink again." Then he asked me, "He wouldn't lie to me, would he mom?" I mean, he's not going to drink again is he? I didn't have the heart to tell him that dad never quit drinking. I cried and cried after sending my son to take a shower. You know, it's so easy to handle it when the A lies to you, but when you know they lied to the kids....God, it kills me. I typed up an email to send to AH. Just telling him what our son told me and telling him that we have a great kid who is pretty smart when it comes to knowing his feelings, etc. One thing my son said was, "Hey, it's dad. He's allowed to be who he is. I don't have to believe everything he says about other people. I know that I can think for myself and he's allowed to be as negative as he wants even if I don't like it." Did I say how much I love my son? He's sooooo NOT codependent. Maybe I'm doing a good job after all?
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Old 08-22-2012, 01:55 AM
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It's awful tough when the kids get hurt by the lies.
For adults they are used to it and come not to expect anything from the A.
I admit I have told my oldest son (10) not to believe everything his dad tells him about his drinking...but it kills me when my son repeats things his dad told him and I just know its all BS.
Terrible awful disease
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Old 08-22-2012, 02:10 AM
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Originally Posted by lizatola View Post
Then he asked me, "He wouldn't lie to me, would he mom?" I mean, he's not going to drink again is he? I didn't have the heart to tell him that dad never quit drinking. I cried and cried after sending my son to take a shower. You know, it's so easy to handle it when the A lies to you, but when you know they lied to the kids....God, it kills me.
I remember asking my grandmother the same question when I was 13 and my parents had just separated and were heading for divorce. Her answer has stuck with me my whole life:

Sometimes people will say something and honestly believe that it is the truth at the time they are saying it. But afterwards they might change their mind. It is like when you promise to do something and then something else happens and you change your mind and decide to do it later and somehow never get around to it.

She used the example of my many promises to clean up my room. I was a messy kid, and my room always looked like it had been hit by a hurricane. And I totally got it. My Mom and Dad weren't exactly lying to me. They were just later changing their minds or postponing it for some vague undefined later time.

It was a lesson that has helped me throughout my life. Now I take all promises with a grain of salt and wait to see what actually happens. Sometimes I am even pleasantly surprised when a promise is kept. But it stops me from being too upset when a promise is broken since I have gotten into the habit of always making a backup plan and not totally relying on other people's promises.

Perhaps the next time you find yourself in a similar conversation with your son, you could take the opportunity to help him understand that Dad is a person, and people change their minds. It is not quite saying that Dad outright lies to him, but will make him aware that he shouldn't always take people at their word.
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Old 08-22-2012, 06:27 AM
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That is an excellent example. I think my son knows the truth anyway. When he sees my AH's car gone at night, he will say, "I hope he's not out drinking."
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Old 08-22-2012, 06:34 AM
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One conversation I had after their AM passed away was that I am human and will make mistakes. I will forget lunch money, I will forget this or that. I will promise and fall short. It doesn't mean I don't love them but am human who really tries and loves them.

While I didn't have your exact conversation I did have to deal with why my sons mother verbal abused him, and my son never was able to apologize to her for lashing back. We are all weak and fail. Doesn't mean we don't love.

Hope thing makes sense and helps in some way.
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Old 08-22-2012, 07:12 AM
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It is for certain that your son "knows" more than you think he does. Children are like sponges and absorb everything in the environment. As parents we often assume that they are not negatively impacted by certain things just because they are quiet or are not talking about things. Actually they do not have the ability to verbalize their feelings in the same way we do, or may be afraid to do so in certain cases.

It is in the family unit that we recieve our first and most powerful lessons about how people are supposed to interact with each other. What we see in our childhood homes we assume is normal. The child has no firm basis for evaluating otherwise. Growing up in the turmoil of addiction has a profound effect on the developing child. We know the devastating effect that it has on us, as adults, so, imagine what goes on inside the child.

I can hardly keep from crying every time I read the ACOA board. It is amazing how many confess that they prayed for their parents to seperate while one parent was dedicated to keeping the marriage together "for the sake of the kids".

Liz, it does sound like your son is very sensitive. The sensitive kids are even more incl ined not to miss a thing! We co-dependent adults almost always have a history of significant dysfunction in the family of origin---messed up boundries, etc....

How does your son feel about going to alanon? I agree that that would be a good idea.

I thought your son's question was heartbreaking, too.

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Old 08-22-2012, 08:15 AM
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PINK HUGS for you and your son!

This disease is heartbreaking!!
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Old 08-22-2012, 10:35 AM
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Originally Posted by lizatola View Post
I didn't have the heart to tell him that dad never quit drinking.
He's 13...was your response lying by omission?
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Old 08-22-2012, 10:47 AM
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Originally Posted by MadeOfGlass View Post
He's 13...was your response lying by omission?
I told him that he could ask his dad again and I suggested Al a Teen for him at that time. Honestly, I have no physical proof that AH is currently actively drinking. Of course, I myself have suspicions but I don't have any proof. My AH told me that he's stopped drinking. Nothing more I can do about that except believe what I see and I don't actually 'see' him drinking. I didn't want to get into a discussion where I confused the boy by saying, "Well, dad did drink since you guys talked but he told me that he's done drinking now." Since AH is a binge drinker and doesn't keep it in the house, I can't prove it to either myself nor to my son. I don't think I was lying by omission, I was just giving my AH the benefit of the doubt in the present.
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Old 08-22-2012, 10:52 AM
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Ok, I was being awfully tough. I know that 13 year olds realize and understand far more than we give them credit for. Just read the ACOA board. They are all confused from the years of denial and refusing to talk honestly about the elephant in the room.
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Old 08-22-2012, 10:54 AM
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YOU DONT NEED PROOF THAT HE IS DRINKING. YOU JUST HAVE TO KNOW IT!

This is what boundries, for you, are all about.

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Old 08-23-2012, 07:07 AM
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Originally Posted by Hypatia View Post

Sometimes people will say something and honestly believe that it is the truth at the time they are saying it. But afterwards they might change their mind. It is like when you promise to do something and then something else happens and you change your mind and decide to do it later and somehow never get around to it.
i agree with the above statement in NORMAL functional families...

i disagree what is said for the ALCOHOLISM functional families...THIS IS WHAT ADDICTS AND ALCOHOLICS DO!!...they lie to the closest people to them...
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