My mom is dating an alcoholic
That pivotal disappointing frightening moment says it all for me. After this over the next few weeks and months mum continued to drink and became even more out of control.
We asked for help, the social workers said they couldn’t do anything. She would drink, sleep, get a taxi for gin and same again. She had social workers and she wouldnt let them in either.
The neighbours were calling me saying there was an ambulance in the drive , they were worried she was eating cat food, she was neglecting herself even more.
It’s difficult to know exactly when in my childhood it started and when I realised my mum was on a one way journey to destruction, but what I know is that her secret daily drinking became more and more important to her until it was her only activity.
Want to share something as a child of an alcoholic? As always, remember Nacoa is always there if you need help and support.
Recently, I received a call from my daughter while she was at her father’s house asking if she could come home because her father was drinking and being mean. But like me, she is probably trying to change him and has false hopes that someday he will magically not be an alcoholic anymore.
Sleeping in the day, staying up listening to records at night, drinking, smoking , long curved cigarette ash tipping on to the floor. She started to have a poor memory , repeating questions. That’s when my world fell apart as both parents died at the same time, my father, and my mother in her living death as she got even more intoxicated and was admitted to hospital for alcohol detox and diagnosed with Alcohol related brain damage.Me going back and forth asking her to go to bed, to put the cigarettes out safely. Her muscles wasted, her nerves to her hands and feet lost their use. I thought – finally she’s been detoxed, maybe she’ll be better and stop drinking and return to normal ?
After the detox she came out of hospital, hardly knowing us, having forgotten her own husband had just died, yet the first thing she said was ‘ Can I have a gin then?The secret carried on as well as the drinking as I went into my teenage years.The denial about her heavy and all day drinking and the lack of explanation for it seemed to be about her choice to continue despite the fact it was out of control, and about my fathers reluctance to address it or discuss it, with her or with us.In my heart, I knew he didn’t have the control to adhere completely to the stipulations, but they made him accountable and therefore more careful. They told me stories of him falling into a deep sleep on the couch after drinking a bottle of wine, how he and his girlfriend fought about his excessive drinking, and how he would go to the store and buy wine by the case, only to have to replace it a week later. My daughter started crying and said, “Mommy, I don’t want Daddy to die, and I’m afraid if he keeps drinking he’s going to.” Having been in therapy talking about my ex’s alcoholism for at least 15 years, I am educated on the disease, probably more than most people who have lived with an alcoholic, whether it’s a family member or spouse.I also made it very clear that drinking and driving was a no-no, and that if I ever found out it happened, I would do everything in my power to make sure the kids didn’t go to his house any longer. But over the years, as the kids grew, something began to happen that would change everything. I have always been very open with my children, even from a very young age, about alcoholism and what to expect with their father (assuming he remained in denial and did not try to get help).’ We had about about six bottles we’d hidden in the boot of the car – had to get one out, secretly dilute it and give her a dilute gin to placate her.