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I wrote this in Feb. of 2009. I hope it helps some of you who are where I was over a year ago.  

                               Alcoholism

I am telling my side of the disease of alcoholism.
if it makes you angry...
that is certainly not my intention.

JUST AS YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO TALK ABOUT YOUR PROBLEMS & STRUGGLES WITH THIS DISEASE,
SO DO I.
NEITHER SIDE IS RIGHT OR WRONG...
IT JUST IS.
FOR ALL IN RECOVERY...

ALTHOUGH I HAVE NOT WALKED IN YOUR SHOES, I FELT AND STILL FEEL THE EFFECTS OF ALCOHOLISM, ALTHOUGH I MYSELF AM NOT ONE.

PLEASE KNOW THAT I AM NOT JUDGING YOU...
THIS IS JUST MY SIDE.

Again! I am NOT judging you, although it may seem so...
I am angry, so very angry at this disease and yes, YOU.
A lot of this is from my “growing up” years...
Some of it is from the present.

There is not a thing wrong with how I feel-
It’s what I do with those feelings.
For right now, I am just “feeling” them,
that’s part of the healing.

I am not perfect, I am not always right, nor will ever claim to be so...

I too, am sick with the disease of alcoholism,
although from a different “side.”
The other side.
Do I hate you? Sometimes I do and then, NO. I hate the disease-
It is so very hard to separate the two,
I may not be completely there yet.
I am more than willing to work on that,
and am doing so.

According to the "statistics": One alcoholic or drug user affects at least 30-70 people. And that is just in their immediate circle. Whether it be family, friends, co workers, acquaintances, school buddies, almost anyone you come in contact with....you do some sort of harm to them.  

Remember...this is just me, and I am not speaking for anyone else. I am still learning, working, and growing, just as you are. For today, this is how I feel. Tomorrow...I hope to have grown more:

I can forgive, but don't expect me to forget.

I can live in today, but I still glance at the past from time to time, (Sometimes, I still will dwell on it for a time).

Never expect the past to change, just because you made your amends and apologized. The past never changes and it still haunts me... For today.

Do I like looking at the past? No. For that reason, I believe God gave me a mechanism to keep the really extreme memories at bay...For today, by not being able to remember them at all. These memories must be completely horrific, since the ones I DO remember are too awful for words.

Is it really a disease? I have heard some of you compare it to cancer.
That enrages me.....My mother had cancer. She fought it with all her might. She overcame her battle and is living cancer free today.

I hear you whine at meetings, "Cancer patients get loving care and their loved ones don't get angry with them. And we get crap from our loved ones all the time! What more do they want? I'm trying to do the best I can!"

How dare you!.... Isn’t that what life is all about in the first place? Doing the best you can???

Cancer patients do not deliberately hurt their closest loved ones. Even when they are at their most sickest...they don’t hurt anyone. Yes, their loved ones worry and stress...but they can leave their wallet or purse in their care and not give a second thought to it that is will be just the same as when it was left there.  

And yet you will say: “I am not out to hurt anyone either!“, while robbing your neighbor, loved ones, and even your children—so you can get your next drink, fix, or just because, “You deserve some things in life.” On the contrary...not one of us deserve anything we have. Accept what you have as gifts. Each new day, is a gift, accept it just as it is, and see the blessings. There are so many...

Even when you are sober, your "disease" continues with lying, cheating, incredible selfishness, self-pity, other addictions like sex, workaholism, gambling, money, stealing,  hopping from one relationship to another, greed, and the list goes on. It is so hard to watch a loved one continue to harm themselves and others. It’s unexplainable. It leaves lasting scars.

I have scars! Believe me! Even though they are invisible to others, I still feel the “itch” of them trying to heal themselves. They never quite do...“heal“, that is.

You have so many resources at your hands...nevertheless, it always comes right down to yourself. You and you alone can disgrace this "disease." And...disgrace it you have. Look at those who have succeeded. What did they do to make life great? What did they do to keep their families from harm, danger, emotionally and physical harm? Something works. It’s not hard to find. You just have to WANT it. Not another human being can help you...it all come down to YOU. Then, and only then, can healing begin, and others can help.

Things not working out for you? Life is always just so tough? Wife/Husband leave you? Children despise you? Lost all your real friends? Children put in foster care, wife/husband in a safe house with the children? Was let go from work? Homeless? Penniless? Hmm...I wonder why? It really is your choice on whether you live or die. Not so with a cancer patient.

Are you going to blame me today, or belittle me, maybe try to bring me down to your level? Are you going to abuse me until I feel smaller than an insect, and as useless as a pig?
NOPE!-NOT TODAY, but you will try.....  

Or are you so caught up in only what you know: "CHAOS"—that you cause an argument, find a reason to drink, or just need some space? Well go ahead and leave the mother/father of your children with the kids, unpaid bills, and no groceries. What more does your family need? Hell, you're sober right? Get off your back!

From great-grandfather (alcoholic) to grandfather (alcoholic), to father (alcoholic) to daughter (non-drinker).....Whom as a grown woman, met an alcoholic one day...and lost herself.

Am I angry? You bet!.... JUST FOR TODAY.

I just found *Al-Anon less than 8 months ago. I still don't understand the whole workings of the alcoholic. But I am willing to try. For myself, for my family.  For those whom I have UNKNOWINGLING AFFECTED all these years by something people call alcoholism. I passed it onto my children, and I am not even an alcoholic, or drug user!!  I can see the affects of it today. I couldn’t't see it 8 months ago. My children are grown now. I can only make living amends, and work MY program. How it hurts me to the core to think I damaged my children....without even knowing it. Yes, I am very angry.

That is just where I am at TODAY.

I believe where I am at today...is perfectly okay even if it hurts. If I am to heal...I must confront the cause of my pain. character defects, and other effects of alcoholism. Sometimes, that takes getting angry at being lied to, cheated on, misused, abused, neglected...by someone who is supposed to love, care, and protect you. Someone (or maybe more alcoholics in your life), whom you love no matter what, but cannot be around. The insanity is incredible!

I want to stay sane.  

TOMORROW IS ALWAYS A NEW DAY. New days to grow, learn, accept and grieve and most importantly-FORGIVE.  And with God's help, the most important of all...to make myself better than I was yesterday, despite what you do.  

*No matter how much I love you, I can’t help you. That is utter and complete helplessness at it’s core.

Do I pray for your recovery? Always, everyday, many times a day. Do I hate you personally? Sometimes I really do, then, No, I don’t. Although it is hard to separate the disease from the person.

Tomorrow I may have learned to accept, learn and grow...today, I am just as I should be.

C.M.S.

**This blog is is in no way, shape, or form affiliated with the Alcoholics Anonymous or Al-Anon organizations.




Member Comments

    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Laurie Giles wrote May 2, 2010
    • Your blog really touched me,  having been married to an abusive alcoholic I can really understand so many of your feelings.  Thanks for such great insight



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Veggie wrote May 2, 2010
    • heart



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Denise Richardson wrote May 2, 2010
    • heartheart God bless you, I truly pray that your post will help others to understand that they are not a lone and that there is help not just out there with these type of programs but we‘re here too on Fab40 to be a great support system as well, God bless you dear.happy



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Samdlv wrote May 2, 2010
    • I have been married to a sober alcoholic for 3 and a half years. He has been sober 15 years, but the alcoholism is still a ‘relationship disease‘.
      Many of the things you wrote express exactly the way I feel right now. I’ve been in Alanon for 6 months. Struggling with all the irrational mind games, the crazy making chaos, the selfishness, the self pity. Struggling with the fact that I’m turning 41 next month, and I signed up for this relationship. Feels like a loosing battle. I hope I will get better. It sounds like you have.
      Thank you for the honest words, and for the hope.



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    • 0 votes vote up vote up

      Cheryl Spencer wrote May 3, 2010
    • Thank you so very much for your comments ladies. I am now coming up on by two year Al-Anon "birthday" next month. I will be 47 years old. I have been married twice and neither one of my husbands were alcoholics or drug users. Then two years ago, I met a charming, witty, fun-loving man. (Alcoholics can be very charming and fun to be around)~It changed my life forever. Although I grew up in an alcholic home, I didn't know I had been affected by this disease until I met this man. We have had an off and on relationshiip for two years. It is now over, and I can't tell you the relief I feel today. It did take 2 years of Al-Anon to get where I am today, but I got there. And there is always the next road to head to. I so understand the feelings you all have mentioned. The insanity, the way our minds get out of wack, the pain of going through a relasp, or being with a sober man, who doesn't work his program and becomes what is termed a "dry-drunk." I know of the chaos, the dependency we feel towards these alcoholics. You are right were you are supposed to be right now. Where ever that is...it's okay. Just for now take that small step to be good to yourself. Focus on yourself instead of allowing the other person to fill your head day and night. Start small, anything that makes you feel good. Go out and pick a flower, even if it's a dandylion. They are bright and sunny and beautiful. Put it in a vase, or a jelly jar to remind you of God's love for you.  Do it once a day...and then keep the ball rolling until you will realize...you can be by yourself, and like it! God Bless you all. I will be praying for you! I am NOT an expert at all. I do have good ears to listen though. Feel free to share your thoughts and feelings. I won't judge you, put you down, nor give you advice. Your journey is yours to make, and what a wonderful journey it can be! hugs
      Cheryl



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