Blogs


Notices

She wants to be just like me.

Old 03-10-2010, 09:23 PM
  # 1 (permalink)  
On my path.
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Home
Posts: 330
She wants to be just like me.

My daughter is having a 'dress for success' day tomorrow at school. Basically a what do you want to be when you grow up day with clothes/uniforms. She is seven years old and wanted to wear one of my old lab coats with goggles and have pockets full of rocks with a squeezy bottle of HCl and a rock hammer. I am a geologist/teacher and she wants to be just like me.

First - it is interesting how she sees me. Busy with rocks. :-)

Second - the responsibility of having my daughter copy me is weighing heavily on my shoulders. I am flattered and freaked-out. It is such and honor and a horror. I am realizing how closely she observes me and how she sees IT. She has not known me without the pressure that comes when raising a special needs child (her brother) and I am not what I want to be. Maybe she sees how dedicated I am to my family, maybe not. Maybe kids just want to be like their parents.

I haven't had a drink in over three months. No numbing out, instead happy and in the moment. I hope that this is what she remembers and emulates. I have always been aware that kids want to be like their parents but it has been a back-burner issue for me lately. Getting to sleep, not staying up late drinking, figuring out my relationship with my husband, trying to cope with my son's behavior and healthy living have been in the forefront.

It is hard to stay in denial about my impact on my kids when they want to be just like me.

Sorry for the rant, husband is gone and I need an ear. Anybody else thinking about this? Any children of alcoholics or siblings of handicapped kids have feedback for me?

55438
55438 is offline  
The Following 4 Users Say Thank You to 55438 For This Useful Post:
Horselover (03-11-2010), Kerbcrawler (03-11-2010), least (03-11-2010), Omega10 (03-11-2010)
Old 03-10-2010, 10:15 PM
  # 2 (permalink)  
Member
 
HonestlyNony's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Midwest
Posts: 11
Originally Posted by 55438 View Post
It is hard to stay in denial about my impact on my kids when they want to be just like me.

Sorry for the rant, husband is gone and I need an ear. Anybody else thinking about this? Any children of alcoholics or siblings of handicapped kids have feedback for me?

55438
Hi again, lol... I'm a real chatterbox tonight I guess (expecting it to be a long night..)

My dad was a heavy drinker and got mean about it every time. I always thought he just had an icky personality and never realized til I took my turn on the booze-go-round that it was alcohol related...

But the part that really touched me about what you said is the looking up to mommy part. That played a major role in my stopping. I was going to set a date, like in two weeks, but then I thought with two preschoolers and two teenagers as a single mom, what if I'm already too late??

I really really hope I can one day hear those words from one of my kids. Just Monday of this week I was drunk, unemployed, single, inattentive, sloppy and largely absent. Not much there to emulate. Today I'm still unemployed and single, but I hope to cultivate some redeeming qualities to counteract the damage I've done.

Thanks for being here and giving me hope.
HonestlyNony is offline  
The Following 4 Users Say Thank You to HonestlyNony For This Useful Post:
55438 (03-11-2010), clifty2 (03-11-2010), HumbleBee (03-11-2010), Kerbcrawler (03-11-2010)
Old 03-10-2010, 10:26 PM
  # 3 (permalink)  
Member
 
Impurrfect's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Atlanta
Posts: 31,179
((55438)) - I can only go by what my niece/nephew notice, which is EVERYTHING!! They are 8 and 4. The 8-year-old may have memories of "mommy falls asleep sometimes", meaning my stepsister passed out due to too many Klonopin. My "step-family" is rampant in addiction/alcoholism.

So, Congratulations on three months!!!! Though we can't undo what we've done, we can always show that, though we've made bad decisions...there are ways to change our ways and make better decisions.

I have another niece. She's 16. She's seen me as the RN with the convertible and the $$ who could buy her what she wanted. Then she saw me sink into a crack addiction.

Now, she sees me struggling to come back from that addiction and face the consequences of that addiction and she admires me. Her "dad" is an addict - facing a long term in prison.

I try to tell her that #1 - she did NOTHING to make her dad do what he did. That was HIS choice, HIS addiction. She doesn't understand why I "got it" and he didn't. I try to explain, but I really don't know how. Kids think that they are responsible for everything.

The only thing I know to do is give her a good role model, which amazes even me...the ex-crackhead being a "role model"..but I am.

Kids are resilient. They want to believe the best in their parent. I can't say what impact your past has had on your daughter, but I know that it amazes me, to this day, what an impact I have on my niece because I AM a recovering addict and she knows.

Hugs and prayers!

Amy
Impurrfect is offline  
The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to Impurrfect For This Useful Post:
55438 (03-11-2010), Tazman53 (03-11-2010)
Old 03-11-2010, 06:47 AM
  # 4 (permalink)  
Member
 
Stayinfree's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: UK
Posts: 241
I'm not surprised she wants to be just like you.
So do I
Stayinfree is offline  
The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to Stayinfree For This Useful Post:
55438 (03-11-2010), Horselover (03-11-2010)
Old 03-11-2010, 07:24 AM
  # 5 (permalink)  
Member
 
HumbleBee's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Buzz-free Zone
Posts: 1,372
Your post touched me as I've been thinking alot about my mom who passed 3 years ago.

I remember being a child (6-8 years old). My mother was divorced from my biological father (he was not an alcoholic) and there were 5 of us kids.

She never drank and really struggled to raise us on her own; I remember having tomato soup and crackers for dinner almost every night of the week; she never ate with us claiming she 'had eaten ealier' - I realized later that she went without because there wasn't enough food.

Anyway, fast forward...she re-married when I was 10. This man was a full-blown alcoholic. A couple of years passed and she began drinking with him. Very uncharateristic for her. She claims to have 'joined him' to 'tolerate him.'

She was a slight woman so a couple of drinks would knock her on her butt easily, and she was a fiesty drunk too.

My point is, is that no matter how much I disliked her drinking, that's not what I remember and cherish about her.

Even though I turned out to be an alcoholic myself (another topic I suppose - genetic vs. learned behavior), I have far many more good memories of her as a mother who would put her life on the line for her children and a wise woman beyond her years.

I choose to hold onto the good lessons my mother taught me and the strong characteristics that she had as a woman.

I can only speak for myself. I know there are other people who had real trauma in their childhood. I did not.

I choose to not identify her as an alcoholic only since that's not how I choose to only define myself.

Thanks for your thought-provoking post. It's brought back some really good memories that I needed this morning.
HumbleBee is offline  
The Following User Says Thank You to HumbleBee For This Useful Post:
55438 (03-11-2010)
Old 03-11-2010, 08:16 AM
  # 6 (permalink)  
Follow Directions!
 
Tazman53's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Fredericksburg, Va.
Posts: 9,730
55438 I can only speak from my experience, my youngest are now almost 18, they were 14 when I sobered up. When I was drinking they stayed in their rooms, a conbo of fear & disgust. They rarely had friends over due to being ashamed of having a drunk for a father. I stayed drunk from the time they were 9 until they were 14.

Well last year, one of these same children told me "Dad, I love you." I replied "I know hon, I love you too." She responded "No I do not think you understand, I really love you!". once again I replied that I knew that, then she said "Dad, I love you, my friends wish thier dad's were like you!"

I still get teary eyed when I recall that day.

Humblebee this brought a tear to my eye when I read it, remember your mom as this person, because in her heart that was the REAL her!:

She never drank and really struggled to raise us on her own; I remember having tomato soup and crackers for dinner almost every night of the week; she never ate with us claiming she 'had eaten ealier' - I realized later that she went without because there wasn't enough food.
Tazman53 is offline  
The Following 4 Users Say Thank You to Tazman53 For This Useful Post:
55438 (03-11-2010), HumbleBee (03-11-2010), NEOMARXIST (03-11-2010), Omega10 (03-11-2010)
Old 03-11-2010, 10:27 AM
  # 7 (permalink)  
On my path.
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Home
Posts: 330
Thank you all!

Reading your posts had the same effect as slowing down and taking a deep breath. Calmed me down. They made me remember that I can't do anything about the past but today is mine to live.

I needed that.

55438
55438 is offline  
The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to 55438 For This Useful Post:
Horselover (03-11-2010), HumbleBee (03-11-2010), Tazman53 (03-11-2010)
Old 03-11-2010, 11:13 AM
  # 8 (permalink)  
Administrator
 
Anna's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: Dancing in the Light
Posts: 58,250
It sure sounds like you're on the right path to giving your daughter a good role model.

I am a ACOA and I grew up wanting (intensely) to be NOT like my mother. The ironic thing is that I was so focused on being 'not like my mother' that I had no clue what I did want out of life, none whatsoever.
Anna is online now  
The Following User Says Thank You to Anna For This Useful Post:
55438 (03-11-2010)
Old 03-11-2010, 12:30 PM
  # 9 (permalink)  
bona fido dog-lover
 
least's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: SF Bay area, CA
Posts: 96,360
Blog Entries: 32
Maybe she sees how dedicated I am to my family,
However she sees you, it's obvious she likes what she sees in you or she wouldn't want to be just like you.

least is online now  
The Following User Says Thank You to least For This Useful Post:
55438 (03-11-2010)
Old 03-11-2010, 12:56 PM
  # 10 (permalink)  
Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Posts: 40
My dad (who raised me) was an alcoholic.

I was adopted...I've recently discovered that my biological father is an alcoholic as well...but he hasn't had a drink in over 30 years. And my biological mother's dad was a full-blown drunk his entire life until his death about 10 years ago. So this is my legacy no matter which way you slice it.

Anyway..my dad was the greatest guy in the world. He was a rare breed of alcoholic in that he drank beer all day, but I think I only ever saw him drunk once in my life late night at a wedding. It didn't affect his personality, he never shirked his duties (in life or as a parent). He was always there (for me and everyone he knew). He was wonderful and I miss him every day. While I worried about him & his addiction as I was growing up, it was never a big deal in our relationship or in his relationships with others. Sure, I remember being embarrassed by certain things...but it in no way marred my admiration of him or my love for him.

Wow. Talk about babbling...LOL..

Anyway..I guess what I'm saying is that it is possible that an alcoholic parent can be a great parent. Not recommending it of course--just saying.
Fluffhead72 is offline  
The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to Fluffhead72 For This Useful Post:
55438 (03-11-2010), least (03-11-2010)
Old 03-11-2010, 01:21 PM
  # 11 (permalink)  
On my path.
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Home
Posts: 330
You guys are great! Thank you for sharing your stories with me, they really do help me keep my focus on the things I CAN do instead of how I may have failed.

55438
55438 is offline  
The Following User Says Thank You to 55438 For This Useful Post:
least (03-11-2010)
Old 03-11-2010, 08:13 PM
  # 12 (permalink)  
6/20/08
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Posts: 4,467
What an honor your daughter is giving you.

If there is ONE thing I regret in my life, it is that my children had a drunk for a mom. Yes, I"m working through it. I have a good relationship with them now, but they didn't deserve the childhood they were handed.

Your daughter is one lucky girl...and will be one strong woman. Thanks to her sober mom.
coffeenut is offline  
The Following User Says Thank You to coffeenut For This Useful Post:
Horselover (03-11-2010)
Old 03-11-2010, 08:43 PM
  # 13 (permalink)  
Member
 
HumbleBee's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Buzz-free Zone
Posts: 1,372
Originally Posted by 55438 View Post
They made me remember that I can't do anything about the past but today is mine to live.
What you said reminded me of something I think of and say alot:

You can't go back and make a better past, but you can start today to make a better future.

This has been a great thread. Thank you 55438 ~
HumbleBee is offline  
The Following User Says Thank You to HumbleBee For This Useful Post:
Horselover (03-11-2010)
Old 03-11-2010, 08:59 PM
  # 14 (permalink)  
Member
 
Horselover's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: NY
Posts: 6,608
Blog Entries: 3
Definitely a great thread and I thank everyone that contributed to it. I especially thank 55438 for starting it.
Horselover is offline  

Currently Active Users Viewing this Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off




All times are GMT -7. The time now is 06:15 PM.