My 2 cents is that you need to stop replaying it in your head because I highly doubt that it was about whatever statement was made. It was probably about a lifetime of resentments towards this sibling. Was he always high-needs growing up? Did he require more from you and his dad than the other kids did? Every kid is different and every kid needs to be parented differently but that doesn't make it easier on the siblings sometimes.I appreciate your story, VacationForever! I can only hope the two will work things out. Our other son is just like me: baffled as to how this all got so nasty. He is trying to stay neutral. Right now, I am just trying to figure out where things went so wrong. I keep replaying the entire incident in my head, and I don't know how anyone could take offense at the statement that was made.
Our son is in a fragile state, in my opinion. I know you think everyone needs to toughen up, Linda, vacationhopeful, but I had a brother-in-law, Rick's brother, who shot himself in the head while drunk. This was only a few years ago. He was an alcoholic. What do you think Rick's worry is with our alcoholic son? Of course he is thinking this could kill him, one way or another. Our son gets out in 8 days. EIGHT DAYS. He will have been in rehab for 60 days, mostly away from all of us, including his two-year-old daughter. All he needed was a setback.
It's normal for addicts who have recently given up the drug of choice to be withdrawn. That is what they do. We take classes every Saturday with the other families, 75 minutes with a therapist, and it's apparent this is a normal reaction--withdrawing from conversation and retreating inward. It's not like it's odd for him to react by being quiet. He doesn't withdraw from us or his wife and daughter, but we we want that happy-go-lucky son back. He is in a fragile state. He just is right now, just as Ronnie was when he took the gun out of the gun safe and used it.
Yes, absolutely! You are very astute to recognize this. I appreciate your post, too, Bonnie.As for your daughter...sounds like she needs to work on forgiveness. It is true the entire family is affected.
Wow, it sounds more like she has the issues then...some people look for anything to set them off and love to blow things out of proportion. It's like they're bored and looking for drama. It IS hard around the holidays. They magnify everything 1000% don't they? Oddly, DH and my mom are the "good kids" and the ill siblings resented the heck out of both of them. I remember DH's sister yelling at me that I needed to "make" him have a relationship with her and that he "must be so jealous of her life". It was really nuts, and I doubt even she believed it.Our alcoholic son was always the easy one. He was always the good student, the one that stayed out of trouble. and he didn't drink until he was 21. He is the one who graduated from college with honors and got his master's degree. I think Christine may have a point there. The other two resented him for being the good kid, never getting in trouble. He also just turned 40, he's the oldest, so this is not about a kid just out of college. I think it's jealousy with our daughter. And you are right, Christine, we should stay out of the kids' relationships. I wish they didn't affect the holidays so completely. We do go to Al-anon every Tuesday. We will share our experience and see if the group has some advice.
The other two were the difficult children. Our daughter was more difficult for me. I hear people say that's "normal" for a daughter. But she is still not easy. She sends me random emails chastising me for whatever supposed thing I did the night before to hurt her feelings. She is really over sensitive. Our younger son was a very strong-willed child and kept me exhausted throughout his childhood. I was always chasing him around the house, even as a teen. He had drinking problems as soon as he turned 21 that lasted several years, but he is not an alcoholic. He is lucky he didn't get the gene.
Yes, absolutely! You are very astute to recognize this. I appreciate your post, too, Bonnie.
Cindy,<snip> I know you think everyone needs to toughen up, Linda, vacationhopeful, but I had a brother-in-law, Rick's brother, who shot himself in the head while drunk. This was only a few years ago. He was an alcoholic. What do you think Rick's worry is with our alcoholic son? Of course he is thinking this could kill him, one way or another. Our son gets out in 8 days. EIGHT DAYS. He will have been in rehab for 60 days, mostly away from all of us, including his two-year-old daughter. All he needed was a setback.
ITA with this. My parents didn't really talk to me about drinking or drugs, but we had some programs in school where a former addict came in to talk to us about addiction, staying away from drugs, how alcoholism/drug addiction is genetic in a lot of cases, etc. That all stuck with me. I saw enough people in my dad's family struggle with alcohol that I knew that I wanted no part of finding out if I had that gene or not. Even in college I stayed away from alcohol. There was some pressure to drink, but it wasn't anything terrible and people did respect it when I told them that I didn't drink and wasn't interested in starting. I already talk to my kids (8 and 11) ALL THE TIME about how strong the alcoholism gene is in my family and to stay the heck away from alcohol and drugs. I tell them how we buried grandpa's brother very young and it was due to booze...how awful it was because he looked just like grandpa and how much it scared me. Hopefully it sinks.To everyone reading this thread, do talk to your kids or grandkids through the formative years (before they even become teenagers) and throughout teenage years about the dangers of drinking and doing drugs. Studies have shown that parents who regularly "educate" their children about addictive effects of drinking and drugs TEND to have less problematic adult children. Cindy wrote about the culture of drinking, and fortunately it was not in the culture that I grew up in. My parents drummed into our heads about drinks and drugs. I did that to my kid as well. My parents did not drink. I don't drink and my son is the same way. Even when he was in high school and through college, he never got into it while he saw his friends drinking and passing out. It is not foolproof but it helps.
Cindy, Spirits post on what has been learned about how brain synapsis effect whole body is worth reading again (read it 4 x's and ITA from a pure experiencial perspective) and getting a better understanding. Have been keeping you and your family in our prayers and glad to know you are going to Alanon. The more you learn about you, the better prepared you will be to navigate choices others make that you are powerless to influence.In rehab, they go to AA meetings 8 times per week. After he gets out, he will go to AA meetings every evening. He gets strength from AA and his sponsor, who is an acquaintance of his from his field of work.
Thank you for the continued prayers. We have learned in Al-Anon that we are powerless over alcohol. I felt powerless for six months of watching as he went downhill quickly. He was always a problem drinker, but he became an alcoholic early May of this year. His therapist at Kaiser said it was a switch he needed to turn off in his brain. This was before rehab, when he was trying to figure out what was going on. I don't know whether that is true or not, and I have not asked our son recently if he believes it's some "switch." It seems rather simplistic.
So glad you did this bump, was just thinking about how things are going also.Bumping up to see how your son is doing and how you are doing. He is home now right?
I read this with much sadness as both the son in law and his brother died ttwoand a half months apart, at age 40 and 31 a year and a half ago.It is really great that you are taking classes and learning about the disease. I wish my daughters inlaws would stop being enablers, they have two alcoholic sons. They make excuses for everything, after all, he only drinks one bottle a day (of vodka)
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