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New to SR - Angry and frustrated

Old 09-28-2013, 05:43 PM
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New to SR - Angry and frustrated

Hi, all.

I have been "lurking" on Sober Recovery for a few months now. I so appreciate everyone's honesty, kindness and candor. Alcoholism has run rampant in my family. My parents have drunk alcohol every single night since I can remember. My cousin was in rehab and recounts stories of being drunk at age nine at our Christmas celebrations. In short, I have never known anything but heavy drinking as being "normal." For years, my parents were highly functioning alcoholics, so I never really considered it a problem. I, too, have been a partier for years, but lately my mom has taken a turn towards the worse. (She showed up to Mother's Day brunch at a nice restaurant, hammered and incoherent, in front of her grandchildren. Also, there have been more than a few mornings that when talking to her, that both my sister and I know that she was drunk. My father has called us, complaining about her benders.) However, like most dysfunctional, alcoholic families, all of this has been swept under the rug and my parents continue to go to bars every single night.

After the Mother's Day fiasco, my husband and I spent the summer "cleaning up our own acts." I looked at my habits consciously and dealt with my fears of turning into my mother, down the line. My husband and I have become regulars at yoga class, we have cleaned up our eating habits and have reduced our alcohol drinking immensely. I have attended Alanon meetings and I have read many books and pamphlets on the subject. My husband's parents were also alcoholics (his father died of alcohol related issues at the age of 59, and his mother finally quit drinking when she almost died of liver cirrhosis). In short, neither of us have a really good idea of what "normal drinking" looks like, yet we were taught to believe that the non-drinkers were the weirdos. We have four children, who obviously have alcohol issues on both sides of the family, so I only wish we had faced the music sooner.

I understand the 3 Cs, although I still worry about my mom a lot. I also wish she was forced to face some consequences of her drinking. My parents are wealthy, my father is a classic enabler and so far, my mom's health is good, so she really doesn't seem to have a reason to change. I want her to get help for her problem, but if I am honest, the angry part of me wants her to be punished.

When I attended Alanon meetings, I felt out of place, because most, if not all, of the members were dealing with the alcoholism of a spouse. I felt like people were wondering why I was there. I obviously have boundary issues with my family of origin, but I was hoping I could meet someone who could relate to me and my worries about my parents. Unfortunately there are no local ACofA meetings in my area. However, I think this forum suits me better anyway.

Thanks for reading.
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Old 09-28-2013, 06:07 PM
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Congratulations on the steps you and your husband are taking for yourselves. Are your children still at home? This is the point I'm having a hard time with. Our kids have grown up seeing constant drinking as a normal thing at home, when people come over and at family reunions. As much as I'd try to teach them otherwise, they do learn much more by action and environment. 3 are grown and 1 more at home. No answers on this, but plenty of regrets. There's not much open drinking in our house anymore, but it doesn't change the family reunions. The last thing my husband ever wanted was to follow in his father's footsteps (died in his 40's - 1 year sober), yet here we are. His family is very good at ignoring drinking problems. The first step is awareness. I applaud the personal steps you've been taking.

Have you had time with your mom to talk with her about your concern for her? Being honest with your parents will perhaps plant a seed with them that something is really wrong, but more so, maybe it'll help with any resentment you're holding onto.
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Old 09-28-2013, 06:24 PM
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Hi DoubleDragons, glad you joined. So many changes you've made, that's so good.

Have you tried looking for other ALAnon meetings? Perhaps Alateen, could point you to one that's more focused on adults?

http://www.al-anon.alateen.org
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Old 09-28-2013, 06:31 PM
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Hi, thanks.

My children are 17 and younger. I was very frank with them on Mother's Day, concerning their grandmother and alcoholism and the problems with alcohol on both sides of the family. (such a fun thing to do on my Mother's Day -ha!)

My parents are classic narcissists, so anytime I broach the subject of alcohol abuse in our family, it is always somehow turned against me. My husband and I no longer consume alcohol with them, so to say things have become uncomfortable, is a huge understatement. For the first time in my life, I have become the "bad kid", instead of my rebel sister. LOL (btw, I am in my early 40s)
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Old 09-28-2013, 06:37 PM
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Originally Posted by DoubleDragons View Post
Hi, thanks.

My children are 17 and younger. I was very frank with them on Mother's Day, concerning their grandmother and alcoholism and the problems with alcohol on both sides of the family. (such a fun thing to do on my Mother's Day -ha!)

My parents are classic narcissists, so anytime I broach the subject of alcohol abuse in our family, it is always somehow turned against me. My husband and I no longer consume alcohol with them, so to say things have become uncomfortable, is a huge understatement. For the first time in my life, I have become the "bad kid", instead of my rebel sister. LOL (btw, I am in my early 40s)
Oh, I hope you understand, I realised you were an adult! When I was in my 20s I found Alateen pointed me to some good ALAnon meetings that weren't just focused on people with alcoholic partners, but adult children of alcoholics as well. Hence my suggestion.

I am in Australia, so maybe it's different where you are, but I found back then it was easy to find a group and talk about my Mothers alcoholism.
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Old 09-28-2013, 07:40 PM
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It's really disturbing that you're considered the 'bad kid' for NOT drinking! I applaud you and your husband for taking steps to make your lives healthier. It's better for you and your children. As much as you may worry about your mom, she's an adult and there's nothing you can do to change her. Focus on yourself and your family. You deserve happiness.
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