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Family Matters

Partners, families, children and friends - they all get affected by your drinking.
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Shadowlad
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Re: Family Matters

Post by Shadowlad » 05 Feb 2018 01:23

DoneandDone wrote: I stayed with girlish ideas my whole life. I thought I could do all the adult things around house and the education and feeding of family and still let it all go over and over in a whoopdedoo or hullabaloo. Plus trying to keep a professional career going. It was an impossible jumble.
This is interesting Marsha, i hope you don't mind me quoting. I can relate to this, trying to juggle so many things at once, working long hours and taking on too many roles at home and work. I wasn't a professional, but was at one point working towards that too. My mind was kind of set at that time, i convinced myself that i could manage, but in truth i didn't.

I have never read any of Allen Carr's books, but that is an interesting theory about our alcohol troubles being culturally induced. Does this mean in the way it is promoted to us nationally, or the culture in which we were raised ? I was never surrounded by heavy drinkers growing up, but most of my adult life was aware of a growing obsession with the substance in this country (UK) inducing a culture of binge drinking and recklessness. I was a home drinker and for many years thought i had it under control, but then carried on even when i knew the control was gone. If i could rewind the clock i would have followed the admirable example of my teetotal Irish friend. She made a decision long ago never to drink alcohol because of a family history of alcohol abuse and violence. She never drank AND was a virgin until 30 ! :shock: Wow, that really is self control isn't it. Its kind of a clever way of rebelling against the 'norms' of society lol.

Seriously though, whatever the reasons we got into difficulties with alcohol, it happened and we are here now with a chance to develop and grow, especially inwardly. How good it would be to find inner peace. Acceptance of what i can and can't control seems to help bring some peace and calm. Especially where relationships are concerned.

<:)> xx
Life is 10% what happens to us and 90% how we react to it.

Dennis P. Kimbro

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Re: Family Matters

Post by DoneandDone » 06 Feb 2018 12:24

Hi Nicky,

Always nice to see you. Carr is pretty emphatic that the culture is what creates the most potent piece of the drinking jigsaw puzzle as Pink Panther refers to it. More than our DNA or that we are weak willed, he insists it is not willpower that helps us to quit. It is a simple matter of getting that drinking is doing nothing for us.

I held onto to the bottle in the face of a lot of damage to myself thinking it helped me ‘cope’. It sure does feel good to gain some peace and calm. I didn’t think I had it in me. My emotions were on a slow simmer drinking and could get to a boil all too fast. Trying to sort out a conflict with loved ones or anyone while drinking or hungover was impossible. Just unnecessary drama. Sober I just don’t get so excited or feel insulted. Feelings are not so easily hurt and if they are I can calmly address. Becoming a grey rock ain’t half bad.
It will always and forever be One Day At A Time

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Shadowlad
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Re: Family Matters

Post by Shadowlad » 09 Feb 2018 20:57

DoneandDone wrote:Carr is pretty emphatic that the culture is what creates the most potent piece of the drinking jigsaw puzzle as Pink Panther refers to it. More than our DNA or that we are weak willed, he insists it is not willpower that helps us to quit. It is a simple matter of getting that drinking is doing nothing for us.
This makes a lot of sense when i think of all the people i have met over the years with drinking problems, and my own experience. If it was a case of willpower many of us would not have had a problem for so long, so many determined peeps. This is why i'm glad that people have challenged my thinking in the past, and i am open to this even today. I have historically been quite set in my thinking, and since becoming more honest and open, things have got better and i have become free of the former 'prison of mind'.

Hope you are well and thank you Marsh ;)? <:)>
Life is 10% what happens to us and 90% how we react to it.

Dennis P. Kimbro

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Shadowlad
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Re: Family Matters

Post by Shadowlad » 09 Feb 2018 21:02

I am finally finding some peace and acceptance with family situation. Long may it last !
Life is 10% what happens to us and 90% how we react to it.

Dennis P. Kimbro

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SueDenim
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Re: Family Matters

Post by SueDenim » 09 Feb 2018 21:16

That's good to hear, Shadowlad.

I have no overt problems with my two; but the longer I am sober, the more I realise that I wasn't as good a mum as I thought I was, or wanted to be. I love them more than I can say, but wine got in the way of a lot when they were older. I was never a daytime drinker, so it was only the they stopped going to bed early that it became an issue for them.

I don't know how to make things better, as they don't live here now, but I really want to heal things. I don't want to make anything worse, and neither of them ever say anything, but I'm sure they must be hurting inside.

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Re: Family Matters

Post by Shadowlad » 09 Feb 2018 22:41

Thanks Sue xx

It is difficult but also very brave when we start to question if our grown children may be hurt in some way because of our drinking problem. It's such a painful thing to contemplate because we are caring people, who love our children and only ever wanted the best for them, and above all, to protect them with all our vigour. With hindsight, we were hurting ourselves by the way we drank, and anything that hurts a parent is bound to unsettle a child. Our children are happy when we are happy, and sad when we are sad. One thing that is so common for us mothers is a sense of guilt, and a running imagination wondering if our children saw anything that we may not remember. In my case, because my son has exhibited such extreme disfunction, and addiction, the devastation has been huge. I blamed myself and literally hated myself to the point of almost giving up. As painful as this situation has been, it has also been inaccurate to take on all the responsibility for my son's problems. It has emerged that he has issues that have been out of our control as his parents. This development doesn't take the sadness away, but it helps to understand and to stop imagining myself as a failure as a mother.

Another crucial point is that people react to things in different ways. My daughter saw me in some states, from around 12 years of age. More so than my son. She does not blame me for anything but of course she was hurting inside whilst i was still drinking. However, when i actually stopped it made her so happy and proud. As she has got older and has matured, she stresses that i was, and am, a lovely mum. I appreciate her lack of blame and her forgiving nature, but i take full responsibility that i was not able to be a 'present' parent when in passed out on the sofa, or worse, the floor.

I think it is always best to wait for our family members to initiate any conversation about our drinking, if they decide to. They often don't feel able to be completely honest about their true feelings until they are sure we are unlikely to relapse. Many times i wanted to grab them and profusely apologise for the past, but had to question my motives. I realised in the end that they actually didn't want words of regret, or endless promises from me. They simply wanted me to be there for them... and to stay sober. I also realised that i had to make up for the times i wasn't present, and spend quality time with my adult children, and listen to them.

If any healing needs to happen, and it often does for all our love ones involved as well as ourselves, then it will happen in good time. I have apologised several times to my children, in the form of loving letters and face to face. It is easy to 'overcompensate', especially when they were teenagers. Some kids do actually take advantage of our regret and will manipulate us. I am starting to hold my head up higher, and working on loving myself as much as i love my children. Us mothers (and fathers) deserve the same compassion and attention, as we are healing too <:)>

xxx
Life is 10% what happens to us and 90% how we react to it.

Dennis P. Kimbro

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SueDenim
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Re: Family Matters

Post by SueDenim » 09 Feb 2018 22:56

Thanks Shadowland, for that thoughtful and kind reply <:)>

My children are 25 and 27 now, and both live over 50 miles away, so I don't see a lot of them. They settled where they went to University and found work. I honestly don't think they moved to get away from me, as they come back for Christmas, family birthdays etc, and we talk on the phone. Because they aren't around, though, they don't see me sober, and I don't get the chance to make things up to them.

I told them that I had given up drinking, but not about my health issues, and they both brought me some Seedlip (AF gin) when they came home at Christmas, so I assume they believe me - they were around for a few days, and obviously didn't see me touch a drop. It hurts that they seem to be closer to their father than to me, but I suppose it's to be expected.

Anyway, enough of me. Sorry to rain on your parade. I am really pleased that you are finding peace, and thanks again for your post.
xx

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Shadowlad
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Re: Family Matters

Post by Shadowlad » 09 Feb 2018 23:14

Sue thank you so much for sharing about such an important topic, i am really interested in how others feel and their experiences. Time really is the best tool we have, and when we are sober our relationships change and evolve naturally. With two educated and independent adult children, it is a wonder they find time to spend with either parent at all, lol. They sound like they have full lives and that is great :)

They know that you are there for them should they need you, and that you have raised them well and given them a good start in life. <:)>

Much love xxx
Life is 10% what happens to us and 90% how we react to it.

Dennis P. Kimbro

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Re: Family Matters

Post by DoneandDone » 10 Feb 2018 12:29

Nice to read of others experiences on how being sober helps with family matters. I’m sticking here on this thread a bit to encourage myself to get real about relationships and to be strong. Family matters destroyed me to be blunt. In process of a rebuild. It’s seems to be working. I’m thrilled. Excited. I feel different. Terrible anxiety out of nowwheee last night, but weathered with lavender oil and going to bed early.

For courage. Funny Girl Barbra Streisand
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It will always and forever be One Day At A Time

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Shadowlad
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Re: Family Matters

Post by Shadowlad » 10 Feb 2018 13:25

DoneandDone wrote: Family matters destroyed me to be blunt. In process of a rebuild. It’s seems to be working. I’m thrilled. Excited. I feel different.
Marsha i feel so happy for you. Family matters certainly shape us and any negative experience can be soul destroying. As i am in the process of a rebuild too, i also feel different. To be honest i'm starting to feel the real me emerging and people around are noticing. As a result more invites are coming in, but thankfully i can decline politely if im not up to it. It feels good to be in control, and able to understand and accept the dynamics of most relationships.
DoneandDone wrote:Terrible anxiety out of nowwheee last night, but weathered with lavender oil and going to bed early.
<:)> Night time seems to be the worst time for anxiety to strike doesn't it. Well done for enduring it, and thank God for lavender oil and beds. I haven't had anxiety for a few weeks, well not excessive anyway. That's progress but i know i am prone to it and have accepted that xxx
Life is 10% what happens to us and 90% how we react to it.

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Re: Family Matters

Post by DoneandDone » 11 Feb 2018 12:46

Shadowlad,
That was very comforting to read.
So good to have your company on the road.
D&D
It will always and forever be One Day At A Time

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Shadowlad
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Re: Family Matters

Post by Shadowlad » 11 Feb 2018 18:56

So pleased Marsha, and thank you for your company too, and your wisdom <:)>

Well its been one of those days where i have been lacking in courage to face people. Was supposed to be visiting extended family today, but tbh i can't face any questions about my trials and tribulations over the last several months. Yesterday, a friend of my daughter visited, we have known her since they were little. As soon as she came in, it was one question after another about my son and then even asking where my ex is living now ! I said i didn't want to talk about it and attempted to change the subject. Following her visit i had a very restless night, with unsettling dreams. I'm not mad with the girl, she's known our family for a long time, but it just triggered the negative feeling inside.

Anyway, at least daughter and partner have gone to visit the family.

I keep writing in my journal to try and work on a moral dilemma at present. The decision i have to make requires careful consideration, and a few days to mull over. I do tend to wear my heart on sleeve at times but there are some things that are so complex that writing is the only option left. It feels safest to pen things down, an unravel a dilemma through written word. I thank our BE friends for reminding us of journals, because without this tool i would be pacing the house today. A chocolate creme egg helps too :)

Its a funny thing building a new life. For me this is stage 2. Stage 1 was stopping drinking, and working on relationships. It was also about rediscovering life as a sober person and trying new things such as voluntary work and education, etc. Stage two is about being much kinder to self, and being true to self. Surrounding myself with positive people. The rest will follow.

Much love xx
Life is 10% what happens to us and 90% how we react to it.

Dennis P. Kimbro

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Shadowlad
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Re: Family Matters

Post by Shadowlad » 12 Feb 2018 10:44

This thread is a great help. Family matters and relationships are an ongoing challenge so i thought i would post this helpful circle of wisdom to remind me. It might help others too.
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Gosh its massive but i won't shrink it, i need the reminder !
Life is 10% what happens to us and 90% how we react to it.

Dennis P. Kimbro

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Re: Family Matters

Post by Topcat » 12 Feb 2018 12:59

I like that Circle of Wisdom Nicky ;)? Now I just need to remember it at the appropriate times :lol:
#5 on the 2020 Challenge
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Shadowlad
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Re: Family Matters

Post by Shadowlad » 13 Feb 2018 18:16

Lol, circle of trust. :lol:
Life is 10% what happens to us and 90% how we react to it.

Dennis P. Kimbro

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Re: Family Matters

Post by DoneandDone » 14 Feb 2018 13:18

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It will always and forever be One Day At A Time

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Re: Family Matters

Post by DoneandDone » 15 Feb 2018 15:21

Past few days this song is playing non stop in my head.
Maybe a nice message from my hidden recesses to encourage
Will share in case it helps anyone. Like a prayer.
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Click here to play
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There's a hero
If you look inside your heart
You don't have to be afraid
Of what you are
There’s an answer
If you reach into your soul
And the sorrow that you know
Will melt away

And then a hero comes along
With the strength to carry on
And you cast your fears aside
And you know you can survive
So when you feel like hope is gone
Look inside you and be strong
And you'll finally see the truth
That a hero lies in you

It's a long road
When you face the world alone
No one reaches out a hand for you to hold
You can find love
If you search within yourself
And the emptiness you felt
Will disappear

And then a hero comes along
With the strength to carry on
And you cast your fears aside
And you know you can survive
So when you feel like hope is gone
Look inside you and be strong
And you'll finally see the truth
That a hero lies in you

Lord knows
Dreams are hard to follow
But don't let anyone
Tear them away
Hold on
There will be tomorrow
In time
You'll find the way

And then a hero comes along
With the strength to carry on
And you cast your fears aside
And you know you can survive
So when you feel like hope is gone
Look inside you and be strong
And you'll finally see the truth
That a hero lies in you
It will always and forever be One Day At A Time

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Re: Family Matters

Post by DoneandDone » 18 Feb 2018 09:14

Working on changing inner self talk
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It will always and forever be One Day At A Time

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Shadowlad
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Re: Family Matters

Post by Shadowlad » 18 Feb 2018 13:33

Hello <:)>

I've learnt some big lessons in recent months, and they have all contributed to a corner turned. A big corner turned :) . This rebuild is starting to feel good. How good it is to be back in control, and to have some direction. You see, i stopped drinking and made lots of practical changes. This was not hard to do, i just had to identify what changes needed to be made and then proceed. The hardest change to make has been to love myself along the way. And i mean to love myself as i do others. For some reason i have always felt less than others, and have put family and other relationships before own needs (except when i was drinking). This has been the imbalance that has stopped real progress. It stands to reason that if one buries their own needs and continue to absorb the problems of everyone close, there is going to be no inner peace. For me to be regularly involved in the dramas of loved ones, it has only led to inner frustration and self pity. Why me ? Why can't i have peace when i have worked so hard to overcome all my own issues ? The 'why me's' and 'poor me's' are all self inflicted misery. I think i am finally learning that how i react to life's events is crucial. Any upset is a natural reaction to a distressing event, but it doesn't need to be all consuming. I have learnt to put everything into boxes, and revisit each situation when appropriate. For me this is self care. The signature below is to drive this learning curve home, because how i react to life now is giving a sense of self respect and self control. Long may it last !

Love to all xxx
Life is 10% what happens to us and 90% how we react to it.

Dennis P. Kimbro

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Re: Family Matters

Post by Lush4life » 18 Feb 2018 14:02

Shadowlad wrote:Hello <:)>

I've learnt some big lessons in recent months, and they have all contributed to a corner turned. A big corner turned :) . This rebuild is starting to feel good. How good it is to be back in control, and to have some direction. You see, i stopped drinking and made lots of practical changes. This was not hard to do, i just had to identify what changes needed to be made and then proceed. The hardest change to make has been to love myself along the way. And i mean to love myself as i do others. For some reason i have always felt less than others, and have put family and other relationships before own needs (except when i was drinking). This has been the imbalance that has stopped real progress. It stands to reason that if one buries their own needs and continue to absorb the problems of everyone close, there is going to be no inner peace. For me to be regularly involved in the dramas of loved ones, it has only led to inner frustration and self pity. Why me ? Why can't i have peace when i have worked so hard to overcome all my own issues ? The 'why me's' and 'poor me's' are all self inflicted misery. I think i am finally learning that how i react to life's events is crucial. Any upset is a natural reaction to a distressing event, but it doesn't need to be all consuming. I have learnt to put everything into boxes, and revisit each situation when appropriate. For me this is self care. The signature below is to drive this learning curve home, because how i react to life now is giving a sense of self respect and self control. Long may it last !

Love to all xxx
Amen to that Nicky <:)>
Sobriety is never owned ; it's rented
And rent is due Every day.

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