Monthly Archives: April 2015

Sunday Inspiration for Parents of Addicts and Alcoholics

making the right decisions in recovery from substance abuseToo often we give children answers to remember rather than problems to solve.

~Roger Lewin

Sunday Inspiration for Parents of Addicts and Alcoholics

mom daughter arguing trust distrust angerIf you have never been hated by your child, you have never been a parent.

~Bette Davis

Sunday Inspiration for Parents of Addicts and Alcoholics

mirror on the wall“You gain strength, courage and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face.”

Eleanor Roosevelt

I’m Just Mom

“If you break parole, expect the police to come knocking at your door. If you escape from prison, the police can break your door down!” These were factoids one son shared several years ago. It was on the heels of discussing his brother. Nothing specific mind you, but in generalities since neither he nor us had heard from him for months. We were wondering what would be the next event and while I was concerned about a relapse and his welfare, he was concerned about what could happen to us. “The parents are the first line of offense since our address is the last noted lived-at-location.”

True or not, I reminded my son that we have had plenty of experience with the police at our door. Though it has been several years since the last uniformed visit, much has changed since then. For one, I no longer live in fear of authority. I’m not the one breaking any laws. And for my loved ones, their disease took them way beyond any moral standards they grew up with – it was never about that. So, I’ve learned a lot about addiction and my relation to it. I have to accept new frontiers as I continue to grow and trust in my Higher Power.  At the same time, I get to respect their right to deal with life on the “outside” and not interfere or even begin to think I know what’s best.  Parole may be one of the many phases of recovery, I’m just mom.

Sunday Inspiration for Parents of Addicts and Alcoholics

If I only Had a Brain“Life seems sometimes like nothing more than a series of losses, from beginning to end. That’s the given. How you respond to those losses, what you make of what’s left, that’s the part you have to make up as you go.”

-Katharine Weber, The Music Lesson

Are you enabling your addicted or alcoholic child?

mom daughter arguing trust distrust angerEnabling comes with the territory if you are the parent of an addicted or alcoholic.  So the real question isn’t “Are you  enabling?”  The real question is “WHY are you enabling?”  Once you’ve figured that out, you can make headway towards changing your behavior for your own health, and that of your child.  Look in the mirror – what kind of enabler (or enablers) do you see?

1)  You are afraid for your child’s life and you hope that you can help keep them safe from themselves.  If you let them use and abuse in your home instead of laying down the law, they won’t end upon the street where they could be hurt.  (News flash: you are deluding yourself if you think that drinking or drugging in your home is “safe.”)

2) You are afraid of the inevitable explosion that will take place when you stop paying your child’s bills or fixing his or her mistakes.

3) You need to keep the charade going because you don’t want the neighbors to know that your family is struggling. You’re in good company on this front: one out of three families struggle with a loved one’s chemical dependency.

4) You are trying to retain access to your grandchildren, who you might lose if you confront their parent about unacceptable behavior.  The threat to deny grandparents access to their grandchildren is a cruel  manipulation that often stands in the way of healthy families and recovery.

5) It’s simply to darn painful to acknowledge that there is a problem. Enabling keeps those problems at bay, at least temporarily.

6) You don’t know what else to do.  You don’t have the tools or the resources to act differently.

7) If you “cover” for them, they can keep their jobs, keep their insurance, etc.

8) You are exhausted and don’t have the energy to behave differently.

Sound familiar?  And are you ready to change? Go to the Parent Pathway “enabling” blog archive to learn how to stop enabling and start building a healthier relationship with your beloved addict or alcoholic.