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I sometimes wonder why – but I know why – it takes so much out of me to stand firm and say ‘I will not tolerate this’, and move on. If you have read previous posts you will see some of how I have struggled with this.

On numerous occasions in the last 12 months there have been times when maybe I should have put my foot down and had the hissy fit. Maybe I could learn something from my feisty eldest daughter – I don’t think she handles issues well sometimes but I have to admire her for fighting back and not submitting, caving in, giving up, giving way.

I had love, I had a dream, I had hope that things would work out. But I was confronted by the ‘cunning, baffling and powerful’ impact of a disease. My boundaries shifted to the point that I did not know where they were anymore.

Recently I came across this post on setting boundaries and it pretty much says all that needs to be said – it discusses the need, the fear, the difficulty or resetting those boundaries.

I had found myself once again buried by feelings of powerlessness, of being unheard, of not being nurtured – I was doing the nurturing. And the lesson I have not yet learned it seems is to nurture myself first.

I have learned something through all of this. Drinking can be an incredibly huge problem. It can lead to alcoholism and alcoholism comes in many forms. According to the definitions provided by AA and the AMA ‘It is characterized by continuous or periodic: impaired control over drinking, preoccupation with the drug alcohol, use of alcohol despite adverse consequences, and distortions in thinking, most notably denial .”

Denial is used here not only in the psychoanalytic sense of a single psychological defense mechanism disavowing the significance of events, but more broadly to include a range of psychological maneuvers designed to reduce awareness of the fact that alcohol use is the cause of an individual’s problems rather than a solution to those problems. Denial becomes an integral part of the disease and a major obstacle to recovery.

This denial does not only involve the sufferer, the one who drinks; it is also with those who they love. They struggle until they get to a point where they have to say enuff. The serenity prayer helps keep them focussed on looking after themselves.

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I keep telling myself – if I am not well I am no good to anyone.  I have a job and career I love. I have parents who need some of my time and attention. I have maturing daughters who still needs my emotional support and encouragement. I have to be well.

I took myself to Al Anon and have worked to embrace step one: Step 1 is “We admitted we were powerless over alcohol – that our lives had become unmanageable.”

It was scary, but I did it. Now I am truly grateful that I did. I think I am still working on this step. But the fact I made a start has made a difference. Dealing with this disease is emotionally exhausting. Confronting denial is frightening and emotionally exhausting. I have had to make a stand and pull up. I have said enuff. I have now put in my boundaries, and need the strength to keep them in place. I am grateful to friends, family, counsellors and my Al anon sponsor for helping me to do this, for helping me to see I am no crazy.

For more information on how or if dis-ease of addiction if affecting you try these questions and ask yourself if you need to step back and look after yourself. Al-Anon or AA won’t give you all the answers, but it will give you the support and encouragement, the love and understanding you need. If you perhaps suffer an addictive disease yourself – look at the twenty questions from AA and in both cases, really challenge the denial. I believe the denial is the worst aspect of the dis-ease.

Is Al Anon for you.

Twenty Questions AA

May your Higher Power as you see him or her bless all those affected by the disease of alcoholism and give you the willingness, strength, courage and power to put yourself in their hands to overcome it.

Oh…and a twitter search for #AA and #alanon will lead you to some great recovery blogs:)

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I sometimes wonder why – but I know why – it takes so much out of me to stand firm and say ‘I will not tolerate this’, and move on. On numerous occassions in the last 12 months – perhaps more if I was to get really tough, there have been times when maybe I should have put my foot down and had the hissy fit. Maybe I could learn something from my feisty eldest daughter – I don’t think she handles issues well sometimes but i have to admire her for fighting back and not submitting, caving in, giving up, giving way.

I had something, I had a dream, I had hope, I grasped true pure happiness, if only for a brief moment.

I loved the man of my  life in the last two years deeply. I would like to say it was unconditionally but I think that is the province of the children. I wanted to be able to do it unconditionally – but a little hurt grew and there was another hurt, and then another. I found myself once again buried by feelings of powerlessness, of being unheard, of not being free to be me or the person I can be. I wasn’t being nurtured – I was doing the nurturing . And the lesson I have not yet learned it seems is to nurture myself first.

I have learned something though – a lot. He is a good man, a wonderful person. He made me laugh. He showed me love. He was passionate. He is feeling remorse for deeds of the pass – suffering from them even. He could be firm and kind, even tolerant, just like me. But he suffered the problems of drinking and all that goes with it. Alcoholism – that insidious sneaky revolting affliction that is affecting so many people, so many lives, so many good things in the world. He has a real battle on his hands. I did what I could to help but I am drained.  Al Anon teaches that alcoholism is a family disease – they are right. It affects all of us, screws with our minds and lives. In order to get well we need to look after ourselves one day at a time. This is what I will do.

I have also learned that to stop drinking is not enough to deal with the issues of alcoholism – there is a whole lot more very painful work ahead for a recovering alcoholic. Not having a drink is just the first baby step – not the resolution. Letting go of someone going through such a struggle so you can stay well yourself  is damn hard – you have to be firm, even cold. You have to be consistent. You are not giving up on them but that’s what they think you are doing – they are selfish when you feel guilty and selfish yourself for saying I need to look after me.

I keep telling myself – if I am not well I am no good to anyone. I still have one child at home I am responsible for. I have a job and career I love. I have parents who need some of my time and attention. I have a maturing adult daughter who still needs my emotional support and encouragement. I have to be well. Hell I cannot even be a friend to my ex partner who is suffering from that insidious condition if I cannot be strong and firm.

God speed my love – give yourself up to your higher power – you will find a way, as I will.

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I thought since some people have read the story about Miss A stonewalling me that it was worth writing about a young Miss A (now 18 and a half) showing much more maturity. In the 18 months she was living elsewhere she discovered life can be tough and getting what you want is difficult. She came back home to live about 6 weeks ago. (more…)

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I just came across this article: http://www.speakstrong.com/articles/speak-strong/boats.html

I just can’t say it much better – I have covered this topic before, so I won’t ad…except to say yes this is important6 for my journey of confrontation!

Enuff!

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Well, for anyone reading this I apologise that my writing has stopped…but I won’t apologise that the rants have been done with. Yes I am feeling better! (more…)

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Ok..I fess – I am in awe of Craig Harper his style, his manner, his writing, his whole site….and now he has thrown down a challenge I cannot ignore – the Get your shot together challenge’. See…(assuming you took took that link!) no airy fairy nice as pie language from this motivator – he is funny, brutally honest and expects the exact same from his readers. Well, In the last months if you have been following on with me you will know I have made major life decisions, and there are moments when I wonder if I have made the right choice. It’s time for me to move on, having learned from these experiences so it is time to stop dwelling on what happened, get my shit together and move on! (more…)

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Are you a parent with a 17 something teenage daughter that thinks she has the man of her dreams in her life and who bends the rules at every opportunity…I am and sad to say but I have had to bring to the fore tough love – problem it’s it feels tough on me too. I know in the long run this is for our benefit, but gee it is hard. Miss 17 currently thinks I am being unfair and unreasonable and is attempting to manipulate me with the idea that she can choose to live where she likes. So be it – but I am not changing my rules if she lives with me. (more…)

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