Sorrow, fear and hope…

My daughter left today. She is going back to college and J is coming home from rehab on Sunday. I just feel so much…it makes my heart hurt.

I know I talk about my daughter like she is perfect and in my eyes she is almost as perfect as it gets. She always tries to do the right thing and I sometimes wonder if that is in reaction to J making such poor choices and my husbands alcoholism. I don’t want her to carry baggage from her childhood into her adult life but I think that is an impossibility. I see it already. She goes through great pain to keep her emotions in check and I see me in her and I don’t like it. I think she is scared…scared of the future and what it will bring. Maybe that is what she should be feeling going into her Junior year of college with lots of decisions to be made.

When I was young growing up in a dysfunctional family, my goal in life was to be invisible. To not draw attention to myself…to do the right thing, to look perfect and to be perfect. Which I guess sounds good in theory but I swallowed a lot of emotions and took responsibility for things that had nothing to do with me. My parents would be shocked to hear any of this. I am sure they thought they gave me a privileged life with lots of travel, good schools and all the other stuff a kid could want. They tried to shelter me from brothers addiction but as we all know that is impossible. The fact that they tried so hard to hide my brothers addiction from me, instilled a sense of shame and secrecy I carry with me to this day.

So I try not to hide everything from my kids. I try to share age appropriate information with my other children but It is not always clear to me what appropriate is at any given moment. The truth is and anyone who has younger children with addiction living in your house knows this: They hear WAY more than they should no matter how hard you try to prevent that from happening. So addiction has shaped my life and continues to shape my children’s lives leaving invisible scars on their hearts and souls. The sorrow I have for this fact is immeasurable…there is nothing I can do to change it.

My hope is that J’s journey through addiction will change into a new path of recovery…I know J needs to do this for himself but I also wish he understood it is not just his life that is impacted.

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About madyson007

I am a mom of 4 who thought she was home free with her oldest son when he went off to college. My serious blunder? Genetics and being naive or maybe just plain stupid.
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4 Responses to Sorrow, fear and hope…

  1. Syd says:

    I feel for her too. The impact that alcoholism/addiction has is huge and pretty gradual. I hope that she doesn’t have the attraction that so many do for those with substance abuse issues. It seems that many of us end up in relationships with alcoholics or addicts.

  2. I’m with you every step on this, Sister! My daughter is heading off to her Sophomore year at college. She is FOCUSED and CONTROLLED. She’s 5’7″ and wears a size 0 (that’s right – ZERO). She will not crack. Oh she can have some fun and laugh but overall she is shut off compared to how she was before her brothers became addicts. Now they are doing well and she will have to figure out her part of it when she’s ready. The siblings – especially younger siblings – need support and it’s hard for us parents to give it when we’re in the midst of all of this craziness. I still have a goal of starting a scholarship fund for siblings of addicts. As always, you’re all in my prayers!

  3. Annette says:

    I so hear you. Molly is who saw and lived with the most drama and it has had its affects on her, but we talk openly and honestly about it all. She has gone to Alanon with me and I have encouraged her to go on her own in her town where she lives. She is open to that idea….but hasn’t done it yet. Its up to her.
    As to little one, again, we talk openly and honestly. The biggest thing for me personally was to accept that this is the family we have. Flaws and all. Its not exactly as I had hoped, but even my girl holds worth here and at times contributes good things. We all are flawed people in whatever ways. This is what we’ve got…..so what are we going to do with it? How are we going to figure out how to thrive here despite the disease? That is what I try to convey to my other kids.

  4. Barbara says:

    I guess in this one instance I can be glad I only have one. I think its possible to survive a dysfunctional family, especially with therapy. I hope your daughter has a wonderful year at school and that you don’t miss her too much and I hope J’s return home will be good.

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