Archive for the ‘My personal story’ Category

Care-giving or care-taking? It’s always better to give than to receive….

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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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When Jodie started talking about how good it would be to go on exchange last year I initially dismissed it as simply teenage wishful thinking. She knew I had been on exchange and I did take the opportunity to tell her of some of my experiences. The subject of exchange became something she started to talk about a lot, so I decided to see how serious she was. I said to her – if you are truly serious about this then do your research.


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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 did it…thanks to my sis…I got to meet the almighty guru himself Craig Harper. (I will add a link later – for now this is my story!) Ok…so he made me laugh, almost made me cry…but has definitely got me back on track as I put my life on a hoist, poke it, prod it, and give it a nice old tune up…and now I have more fodder to blog about 🙂


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Hmmm…12 months have passed so I guess I should check up on how I am doing. I have had my moments recently so its probably a good time to get real about a check up. The signs are good, very good in fact. (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!


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‘You have a problem with confrontation’ ( a psych nurse)

‘You have not confronted the most important person yet – yourself’ (My counsellor)

Yikes….my body is wracked with fear and anguish. My experience of confrontation is negative….scary…frightening. Confrontation means I will upset someone, rock the boat, stand up for myself (and I always seem to fail at that). The last person I want to upset is me. I have already rocked my boat by giving up on my marriage….so what exactly does this mean? Why is my thinking so skewed?


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Well I wish i had written this myself but I didn’t. Reading it was like looking in a mirror and seeing the old me….not a pretty site is it?

Check it out here

The words doormat are still there – but fading fast….anyone got some really good stuff I can just clean them up with 🙂




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Ok…so I have moved on…am getting better – now what? Like what exactly are my goals? What do I now want to achieve? I have spent the better part of the last 6 months playing and having fun but essentially I am goal driven and not a floater. Floating has been fun but I think it is time to spend less time floating and more time working on the longer term goals!


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