I found my beautiful, happy, perfect

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

I have learned alot thru reading blogs and books.
I have come to believe in my HigherPower. That in itself is a miracle to me. I have come to peace with myself and my HigherPower.
One of the things I have prayed about was for me to get better. I was in a pretty dark place for a long time.
I am excited about life again, excited about my family. I am getting out and doing things. This all came about after I started believing in my HigherPower, after praying.

I still have a ways to go, but I feel my beautiful, happy, perfect family was there the whole time. I just had to find myself again. We may not be perfect in some peoples eyes. We are perfect for ourselves.

Ryan has been sober for 2 and 1/2 months now. He has been home a month now.

He is working, although it is just parttime.

Jerry is actually helping Ryan by showing him how to look on our local job search for help wanted ads and how to apply for them.
Ryan really likes his new job and is doing really well at it.

I am still driving him to work. He should get his drivers license back this week. Yes I know I am enabling.
But I am doing what I think is best. He is sober, he is working.
He is feeling confident and actually good about himself. He is excited about getting on with his life.
The only time he has asked me for money is for a movie once and a loan of $95 to get his drivers license reinstated.
We also bought a car for him.

We do have a contract with him.

This is what is expected of him
Makes his car payments to us.
Pays for his insurance, gas and repairs.
He will not recieve any money from me for anything.
He will get another full time or part time job.
We will discuss time frame for him moving out. (It is something I want to happen ASAP)
He agrees to the fact this is his last chance.

If he cannot meet the conditions of the contract the car will be taken away from him. We paid $2700 for it.

He will get on his feet soon and be out of my house. I will not do this again.
He is feeling really good, I know most people will say I am enabling.
I think I am a Mom, proud that her son is sober. Willing to give him this last chance. I am willing to help he get a new start. What happens if this fails? He will probably die if he drinks again. If he stays sober he will live and find a way.
I pray that this lasts, I pray that every family of addicts can find what I have. I pray for Debby and B everyday.


I'm here

Thursday, November 5, 2009

I am feeling better about myself.

I have been getting some exercise in. I colored and cut my hair, I put on makeup this morning. I bought a braclet that has symbols for the serenity prayer. It is helping me alot. I touch it very often and I pray. I have started reading, listening to music, praying, and meditating. I also have a project to keep me busy. I am researching my family genealogy. It has been awhile since I was excited about a project.

I think I have become complacent about Ryan. I really don't know. Maybe he has his addiction kicked this time. Either he does or he will end up back in the hospital for pancreatitis.

He is seeing a counslor twice a week. I am almost sure he is not drinking. He started work this week, he is cooking at a deli. Jerry and him are actually starting to communicate. He is running with the dog, he says he is calling his sponsor that he had when he was in rehab. The only thing is he is not going to AA nor does he have a sponsor here. He works at night, as soon as he gets a car (hopefully this week) he is going to find a day job too. He still stays up half the night and sleeps in the morning. I have a hard time deciding if this is still not a good thing. I am a night person and stay up late and would sleep all morning if I could. So I understand where he gets it from.

Ryan is a good cook, he has started cooking us dinner a couple of times a week. Last night we had something he called Chicken, Asparus Linguini. He made it up. It was really really good.
I don't like to cook but I do prepare dinner every night. When I cook I usually have to follow a recipe, I am not the type that can just whip something up. I don't know where Ryan got it from but he can just go into a kitchen and make something up.
I don't sit down and eat when I have to cook. I don't like to eat my own cooking. I usually eat cereal or PB&J. When Ryan has cooked I sit down and eat. It is actually really nice. Ryan's girlfriend Jessica has joined us. We have even played cards.

We are going to buy Ryan a car and set him up on a payment program. He is responsible for making the payment, paying the insurance, gas and maintance. If he doesn't make the payments or can't pay for gas the car sits. Hopefully he will be on his own soon.

I have been following Debby's blog and am very sad that she is in such a rough place. I hope and pray that B will get clean and Debby can be free from worry all the time. I am to a place in my life that I am not feeling frantic and worried 24/7. All the advise, thoughts wishes and prayers have helped me do this. Me finding myself and learning to pray and learn about enabling was a great help too.

I am thinking and praying for all the Mom's, Dad's, wife's, husband's, sister's, brother's, friends and family's of addicts. Its a hard place.
I am praying that Ryan's and my journey to his being sober will be smooth.

I just hope I don't have my head in the sand.


What is an alcoholic?

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

I have been around alcoholics all my life. I came to believe that it was pretty normal.
My mother was an alcoholic. I did not figure this out or really even think about it until the last few years. I really never thought that it really affected me a whole lot. Now that I think back I had a really rough childhood. Some things I have a very fuzzy recollection of. Some things I don’t like to think at all about.

My parents were divorced when I was 5 or 6. I missed my Dad a lot. I remember when I got a little older, looking up his phone number in the phone book and calling and hanging up when he answered. I just wanted to hear his voice. My mother and stepfather would not allow me and my sisters to see our Dad. We were eventually adopted by my stepfather. I have two younger sisters and a stepsister that is my age.

My mother and stepfather would drink every day, usually getting drunk. They went out a lot. When they would come home they would fight. My stepfather would beat on my mother. She had a lot of black eyes, bruises and I think I remember a broken arm once. We would hide under the covers and cover our ears and cry. I remember running into their room a few times just screaming at my step father to stop. My mother use to egg him on. I remember feeling that if she would be quite he would not hit her. He would beat on us girls too.

My stepfather wanted me to call him Dad. I wouldn’t do it. I wouldn’t even address him by his first name. I remember spending time thinking of ways not to call him anything. If I had to call him to the phone or had to get his attention, I would try and figure out how to do it without using Dad or his name. Since the time I was very young I would try not to be in the room alone with him. When I was about 12 or so he would start touching me inappropriately. I hated him. He never did anything but touch my breasts; it was very traumatic for me. We were not allowed to have locks on the doors and he would constantly walk in on me when I was using the bathroom or undressing.

When I was 15 or so my mother became suicidal. Maybe she was before this but I was not aware of it. I was the one the one that had to help her when she tried to kill herself. My stepfather would come and get me and say, “Your mom’s trying to kill herself you need to help her”. She did this probably a dozen times. We owned a mobile home that we rented out that was vacant sometimes; she would go there and turn on the gas. I would go turn it off. She tried slitting her wrists a couple of times and took pills. She got cancer when I was 19. The suicide attempts stopped then. Her cancer went into remission and she seemed to be pretty happy.

My daughter was born when I was 19 and my mother really loved her a lot. My mom died when I was 23, she was 45. My stepfather died 5 years later. I never saw him much after Mom died. I loved my mother very much. I met my father when my mother died. I ended up in the same town as him. My sisters and I became very close to my dad and stepmother. He died 3 years ago from Alzheimer’s.

I was a single mom; I got pregnant in high school. Tina never knew her father; he didn’t want anything to do with us. Ryan’s father was 15 years older than me, when I became pregnant with Ryan; he left me three days after I found out I was pregnant. He has never been part of Ryan’s life. He was probably and alcoholic. I just really never thought anything about it. He would get drunk a lot, go out after work and drink and not come home.
I married Jerry when Ryan was 4 and Tina was 15. He has two children. We were very happy, things just changed when my dad got sick and when Jerry distanced himself from Ryan.

Jerry always drank, not a lot but he would have beer every night. I really never thought anything about it. It has only been since Ryan started having trouble that it has bothered me. Jerry very rarely gets drunk but he drinks 6-10 sometimes 12 beers a night, usually it’s around 8. He is not abusive in anyway. He only drinks at night even on the weekends. I guess you would call him a functioning alcoholic. He admits that he is probably an alcoholic. Is he? I really don’t know. I just wish he would stop. Is this what alcoholics do? I always thought alcoholics as getting drunk.

My sister, my sister-in-law, my friend are all probably alcoholics. They drink every day. I still have problems wrapping it around in my head that my son is an alcoholic. When Ryan was getting ready to come out of rehab, I was freaking out because I didn’t want him to come home to a home that had alcohol. Jerry said he would move out if I wanted him to so Ryan could come home to an alcohol free environment. That makes me sad to think he would rather move out than stop drinking. I allowed Ryan to come home and Jerry is still here, still drinking.

Did Ryan really drink that much to cause pancreatitis? They say it is almost impossible somebody that age has drank enough to cause it. I don’t know but I hope and pray that he has the strength to never drink again. What happens if something traumatic happens to him, will he be strong enough not to drink?

I am praying for all the parents and children of addicts.


Absolutely amazing!!!

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Something absolutely amazing has happened today. My husband took my son golfing today. He actually asked him to join him. They have not played golf together for a very long time and if they did it was because I was playing too and asked Ryan to come along.

When Ryan was 15 or so, Jerry was disciplining him about keeping his room clean. Jerry was very angry, which is very unusual for him. He would never physically harm Ryan, but he was very upset. I think that he had just had enough and let it all out. I stepped in the middle of it. Jerry has totally distanced himself from Ryan since that moment. They do not talk, even in passing. When we have family gatherings it is very uncomfortable. They are civil to one another; they just do not initiate conversation, or do father son things. I know this sounds hard to believe but it’s true, they live in the same house and don’t talk to each other. Ryan has a room in the downstairs, he does not come out when he knows Jerry is home. For a mother to watch this is very heartbreaking.
I have tried to overcompensate for Jerry not having an interest in Ryan’s life, so has his siblings. We all baby him.

It has been very difficult for me. I have struggled with this for a long time. I have largely tried ignoring it. The last few years I have been trying to decide it I wanted to stay married to someone that didn’t want anything to do with my son. We are not close like we use to be, we are more like just roommates or friends right now. I still love him I think, and he still loves me I think.

Jerry is really a great guy, other than his relationship with Ryan, and his drinking. When he drinks he just drinks, he is never abusive, never drunk he just drinks. He helps out around the house, cleaning, do laundry, dishes, does all the yard work. Whatever needs done he will do it, except cooking. He won’t cook.

We really never fight. We have discussions but neither of us raises their voice. We have talked about why he feels this way. He says that the day this happened with Ryan, he was very angry and he has never felt that angry before. He decided at that point he never wanted to feel that way again, so he just stepped back so he would never have to be in the position where he could feel that way again.

He has been totally frustrated with Ryan, the fact that he still lives at home, has no sense of responsibility, his lies, his stealing from us. I understand all of this, I really do. But Ryan needs a father too. The only father he has ever known stepped out of his life when he was 15.
I started praying, the last two nights. One of the things I prayed for was Ryan and Jerry to mend their relationship. This is totally amazing to me.
P –tired, recovering from a migraine yesterday
E – excited
M – enthusiastic
S –hopeful


Will I ever stop enabling?

Friday, October 23, 2009

I feel ashamed. Tonight I gave Ryan money to go to the movie with his girlfriend. The thing is I really didn't think it thru when he asked. He said "I still have a paycheck coming from (the place he was working before he went to rehab) I will give you the whole thing, I would like to take Jessica to a movie".

I didn't think it thru; I justified it to myself by saying that he’s been doing so good since he got home. He hasn't asked me for anything. This isn't supposed to be fun. He needs to learn how to take care of himself. I will probably not even see that paycheck he has coming.

I feel really bad, but I would feel really bad if I didn't give it to him. I look at him and feel so guilty, so sorry. I don't know. In my head I know not to give him money, but the first time he asks I just hand it over. I know it was wrong I feel absolutely horrible now. How many times have I been told myself do not give him money. I have been told, read, heard not to give him money. It seems I can't let him grow up, feel the responsibility of taking care of himself.
When I first started this blog, I had thought that Debby and my stories were alike. In a lot of ways they are. Ryan is a lot like "B". He doesn't understand responsibility, taking care of himself, how to manage money, getting a job. All he would ever think about was, playing golf, partying, hanging out with his friends.

Ryan is very sweet. He would probably laugh if he heard me call him sweet. He has never ever talked to me in a mad voice. He has a very even temper. I know sometimes he is frustrated but he has never said a swear word to me or raised his voice. He is a very good liar though. He does not communicate very well; he very rarely lets me know how he is feeling or what he is thinking. What he does do that drives me absolutely crazy is when I find out he does something and tell him about it he says OK in this voice that makes me feel like I don't have a clue what I am talking about. That I am accusing him of something that he would never ever do. He says it Ooohkaaay.

I am on May 16th, 2008 of reading Debby's blog. She is so much stronger than I am when it comes to enabling. I wish I had her strength. She can tell "B" no, when he asks for money. She has faith where I don't know where my faith is.

I felt so positive this morning. I had a plan to get better.
I am going to pray tonight. Pray for Ryan to find his way, pray for him to beat the diseases he has. Pray for me to have the strength to tell him no, pray for me to have faith, to feel better about myself. Pray for every mother that has an addict child.


What do I need to do to take care of myself?

Take care of yourself.
This seems to be a reoccurring theme.

In the Al-Anon meetings I have been to they keep saying take care of you. In the book I am reading and the comments I received and the blogs I read all say that. I keep hearing this over and over. I kept thinking in my mind I don’t know how to do this anymore. It seems too much work to take care of myself, along with the other people I take care of.
I don't know how to take care of myself. I have been taking care of somebody else for the last 8 years. I use to take care of myself, I just gave up. Seems silly you can’t even figure out how to take care of your self. I seem to know how to take care of others, what they should do, when they should do it, how they should do it and whats best for them.

I was reading last night and in the book it said. "Figure out what you need to do to take care of yourself." She listed a few things Could it be that easy? Could I make a list?

Haircut - it seems silly that this would be the first thing on my list. I use to spend a lot of money on how I looked –hair salon, nails, gym membership, makeup, jewelry, clothes. Last time I cut my hair about 6 months ago. I put it in a pony tail and just chopped it off. Britney moment? I just made an appointment to get my hair done.

My face - I am not sure I am ready to go back to wearing makeup, but I can start taking care of my face again - not just soap, water and whatever lotion is sitting on the counter

Exercise - I use to go to the gym every day, not sure I am ready to go back to the gym, we have a Wii, maybe I will try Wii fit, there is also a lot of fitness shows on TV

Diet - I just eat anything that’s available, vending machine at work, PB&J a lot at home, chips, soda - cookies and Starbucks are me weakness, just cutting those out would help tremendously. I have gained 75 pounds this year. That doesn't seem possible, sadly it’s the truth.

Walk - I really enjoy walking with my dog Angel - she's a very sweet Cocker Spaniel. I can make it a point to walk everyday. She has been my rock. I can always talk to her. She loves me unconditionally. ( Do I sound a little wacky?)

Music - I like music but when I am feeling down I don't like to listen to music, it’s really strange, when I am in the car all I do is switch stations, I can't listen to some songs. I really don't know why, because most of them don't say anything about my issues. Weird. I think I might try some new age music. Something soothing. Maybe I will by an IPod.

Al-Anon- I will try to go to more Al-Anon meetings, they have at least one a day, and I could even sneak over during my lunch

Sponsor - I need it get a sponsor, it’s hard for me to ask for help, but they keep encouraging that.

Higher Power - I am open minded, most everything I am hearing about, step I need to take, I need my Higher Power. I am going to figure out who/what my Higher Power is.

Prayer - I was not raised in a religious family, I don't know how to pray - this goes along with my Higher Power, I think this is something I really need to think about and work on.

Boundaries - I need to set up some boundaries with Ryan and stick to them, setting them up will be easy, enforcing them is something that will be very difficult for me

Read - I use to read for fun all the time. You wouldn't catch me ever without something I was in the process of reading. I am currently reading self help books; I need to go get a novel, I have not read a novel in a very long time.

Sleep - I don't like to sleep at night, I do like to sleep in the morning. I think Ryan gets this from me. I have to be to work by 7, I usually don't go to bed until midnight to one o'clock, sometimes later.

Family - I would like to spend time with my other children and their kids, I don't see them much, that’s a shame. I have 4 beautiful children not just one. I have 3 of the cutest grandchildren, they hardly know me, and twins that will be here in about six week. I have not even bought them anything. Shame on me.

Shopping – I use to love, love, love to shop. Now I hate even walking into the stores. I can go shopping for the new babies. That might be fun.

Get out of the house - I don't like to go anywhere or be around people, especially people that drink, I am becoming very anti-social. Al-Anon is helping me a lot just by being around other people.

Golf - I use to be very passionate about golf. I was pretty good at it; I think I need to start playing again. Too bad it’s getting cold here, but there should be a few more nice days left.

My husband – I really honestly use to tell people I had the perfect marriage, the perfect family and I did. I am not sure I have the mental strength to think about this right now, but I put it on my list for the future.

I hope it is easy as it sounds. At least my brain is willing to wrap itself around the idea. A few months ago, even a few days ago, I am not sure this was possible.
This looks like a good start. A few things I can do now, a few things I need to ease into and something’s I really need to figure out.

I really use to be a normal, happy person.
I am going to start taking care of myself.
Thanks for your kind words, it gives me hope and gives me confidence.

P- lighter
E - Optimistic
M - Clear
S -Openminded


Support is amazing

Thank you.

Words cannot describe how much this means to me.

Up until I started the Al-Anon meetings a few weeks ago. I was going this alone. My husband really honestly doesn't care. My daughter was supporting me, but thankfully she needs to concentrate on her own family and does not need this stress. She still worries but doesn't have to go thru the day in and day out of this.

I had seen a counselor but I don't think he was the right person. I talked a lot but never got any feedback from him other than "this is wearing on you". I started seeing someone else. Hopefully he will be better for me.

I think the support I just received here will do wonders for me.

Thank you all again


Is this progress?

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Ryan just called me.
He actually called the state motor vehicle office to fine out exactly what he need to do to get his license back.

They told him he needed an SR22 and proof of 12 hours of alcohol classes.

I have no idea what an SR22 is, I told Ryan this. He said it had to do with insurance. I told him he could call the insurance agent and ask him if he wanted. He also could call the alcohol class instructor to get proof.

I was just about to do this for him but I had just read how Debby didnt make the calls. I remember what was said in the Al-Anon meeting and from my reading of Codependent No More.

Is this progress? Am I on the road to recovery?
I don't know, I hope so. I know its a long road, I don't want to be a codependent any longer.


What do I do?

I am reading the rest of Debbys blog. I am on 4/21/08.
She has more strength than I do. She has the abilty not to call the center.
I called. I interfered.

My insticts told me that Ryan should not come back to our home. I conveyed that to the insurance company and the facility, when they had said he would be released. I begged them not to release him yet, I told them about the alcohol in our home. They told me they would not release him without an acceptable discharge plan. For him to come to a home with alchohol was not acceptable. They assured me they would get a plan. I got two more weeks, then he came home anyway. I stayed out of it, not even knowing the discharge plan until a week after he got home. I called the facility to find out what the plan was. I rushed Ryan all over town one afternoon trying to get all the appointments in.

I need to let him figure it out. I am pretty distraught, I don't think I can do this. He has never shown to me that he can take care of himself.
Isn't this a mother's job? No, I guess not. I am so torn.

I am going back to read more from Debby


Where did my sweet innocent baby boy go?

Where did my sweet, innocent baby boy go?

How did Ryan's drinking problem start?
I think it was a gradual thing, and then just got worse over time.

Ryan has very little self esteem. I think it has a lot to do with the fact that he has trouble processing information. He is a quick learner if it is hands on and you don't go to fast. When he is working he does a very good job. He works hard, is pretty dependable for an alcoholic.

He has always been teased by his older siblings. Not really mean just typical sibling stuff. Ryan didn't feel good about it.

He has a wonderful girlfriend; she is a very good sweet girl. They have been together for seven months. She does not drink. Jessica is 19 and she is enrolled in college, very smart girl. She is very supportive of Ryan. She has told him that she will leave him if he drinks again. I really am not sure how he gets these awesome girlfriends. He is great to be around but don't they see that he has a drinking problem, has no job, he has no money. When he does have a job its part time. When he does have money he blows it. If she were my daughter I would not want her with him. As his mother I am extremely grateful he has her.

Ryan and his oldest sister are very close. She is 11 years older than he is. I was a single mom. Ryan and Tina have different fathers. I got together with Ryan’s father when Tina was 8. He left me 3 days after I found out I was pregnant. Another story for another day.
Anyway Tina was a big help when Ryan was a baby. Jerry and I got married when Ryan was 4. He is the only Dad that my kids know.

When Tina was a sophomore in high school she started dating a guy. They are still together 16 years now. Wow, that just hit me; it’s been a long time. They are wonderful parents to Masen, their 3 year old. We were pretty shocked when we found out she is having twins. She is nervous but excited.
When they were younger Matt, drank a lot. I am not really sure how much a lot is. I have always been around alcohol. My mother was an alcoholic. Ryan's father was an alcoholic and Jerry is too. How much is a lot? Is it typical high school stuff?

Ryan was around Tasha and Matt a lot of the time. Matt's parents are alcoholics. They drink to get drunk, they get drunk daily. Matt was free to drink in their household as long as I can remember. I remember going over to his parent’s house for a football game when Tina and Matt were 16. Matt and all his friends were drinking. Kind of shocked me.
Tina and Matt will not allow Masen to be with his grandparents unless one of them is with him. He is not allowed to spend the night with them.

I believe that when Ryan was around 16 or so Matt allowed him to drink. I found this out and told them all Ryan was not allowed to drink with them. Tina doesn't drink much, once in a great while, and definitely not while she is pregnant.

I think Ryan just started drinking and has not quit and it has gotten worse.
When he came back from Kentucky, his girlfriend Sandra broke up with him.
She loved him very much and was very good for him. She finally had enough of his lying and drinking. He lied to her too, all the time.
When he talks, he says things just because he thinks it what it’s what you want to hear. The breakup was very difficult for Ryan, I think this is when started drinking more. I have never seen him drunk, or for that matter I rarely saw him when I thought he had been drinking.

While he was going through this my dad was having a rough time. The Alzheimers disease was getting worse. I could not find a facility that would take him. He kept getting "kicked" out because he became violent. At one point I got one of our state representatives to help me. He contacted the head of the state health dept for me. This is another one of those stories for another day. I just wanted to point out where I was at this point.

This was 3 years ago.

When we went over for Ryan's family process week at the rehab facility, they had some workshops that showed us how alcoholism is a disease. Everybody always asks why Ryan just doesn't stop drinking if it is going to kill him. He has a disease. One of the examples they gave was it is like telling someone with a cold to stop coughing. He needs help to stop drinking. His mind and body are telling him different things. I just don't understand where this inertia is coming from. I thought he would be excited to be home.
Well he was excited to be home. I just thought he would be excited to start living a new life, not go back to the same old one, (hopefully he isnt drinking). The sitting around in your room all day long, not doing anything but listening to music, playing video games or watching TV.

The pancreatitis is really bad. The human body can't live without it and its one of the organs that doesn't just get replaced, like a kidney or liver. If the pancreatitis doesn't kill him, there will be other complications from it that will. If he doesn't drink the pancreatitis does not cause him any pain. It hurts me just thinking about when he was in the hospital in so much pain. I still can't imagine him drinking as much as they say he had too to cause pancreatitis. At first the doctor and counselor thought that he was just unlucky. Until he ended up in the hospital again, and again, and again.

I love my son very much. I am learning about codependency and enabling.
I just hope I can learn how to enforce it.

Where did my sweet innocent baby boy go?


Scared and Optimistic

October 22, 2009

When Ryan was in his 45 day Rehab treatment, they had a Family process weekend. The families of the clients of the facility were asked to come over for 3 days. It was a time for the families and the addicts to get everything out in the open. I was very hopeful that my husband would attend these sessions. It is a 4 hour drive away. That would mean leaving on a Friday night and coming home on Monday night. Jerry went but it was a struggle. He was definitely not happy about going. He did not want to go.
When I asked him why, he said "I don't know why I should go; it is just a waste of 3 days of my life".
I am still struggling to decide if I want to stay married. I have decided to put that on the back burner until I get Ryan out on his own and out of my house. I think it is too overwhelming for me to tackle both problems at once.

Jerry was laid off of his job in May. He just started another job two weeks ago. He had been at basically the same job for 30 years. He had a very good income and we were pretty comfortable financially. On this new job he is only making about 2/3rds of what he made before. The layoff was a big surprise. He really didn't think he would have a problem getting another job. He is very good and experienced at what he does. He was getting very nervous about it, so was I. We had enough money set aside to get us through a couple of years but we would have to cut back. When he got laid off, I sat down with Ryan and explained to him the situation. Ryan would have to start paying his own way. Not that I haven't said this umteen million tims. Pay rent, his hospital bill, his health insurance, his cell phone bill, his alcohol classes. Those were all the things I was currently paying for him.
I never saw a dime from him. I know I am codependent but I cannot comprehend why he would not even help out. I know part of it is because I let him get by with it but it boggles my mind as to why he is the way he is. Wouldn't most people dig in and do the best they could. He spent what little money he had on clothes, golf and alcohol.
I don't think he was drinking heavily, he was just drinking.

He is a scratch golfer and probably could have gone along way if he just would have applied himself. In high school from week to week he was either the top golfer or in the top three. He started playing when he was 5 and has won many tournaments along the way.
He had no plans after he got out of school. He wanted to follow his girlfriend to Kentucky to go to school. That is clear across the country.
I ended up letting him go. He was able to get redshirted on the golf team and was doing really well there.
He has always struggled in school academically. He was in special education all the way thru school. Usually kids that are in special education are not very popular kids. Ryan was very popular in school. He was accepted by his peers and very well liked. He lasted a semester in college. He couldn't do the academics. There was assistance there for him but he would not ask for it. All he had to do was ask. It cost me a quite a bit of money for this failure.

The family process we went thru at the Rehab facility was very difficult emotionally, but it also left me feeling very optimistic. I felt Ryan had the alcohol problem beat. I have been wrong about this many times. I guess I shouldn’t think he has it beat. I feel optimistic that he does. I was optimistic he would come home and be a productive happy person. He would be able to get on with his life. He and his Dad would work out there problems and our lives would be beautiful, happy and perfect again.

During the process everyday they would ask us for our PEMS
How we felt Physically, Emotionally, Mentally, and Spiritually.
My first day was P-overweight and tired, E - scared, drained and hurt, M- checked out, and S - not connected. Last day P- still overweight but not tired, E optimistic, M stable, S- open minded.
Jerry said he was glad he went. We got everything out in the open. He said he would support Ryan when he got home; Ryan had to prove to him that he was willing to get his life back together.

We are now in day 10 of Ryan coming back home. It feels to me that things have not changed. Ryan is still not responsible, still has this inertia. He spends all day in his room. Before he went to treatment, he spent all day on the golf course or in his room. He was able to golf for free most of the time because he had a lot of friends that worked at the golf course. He hasn't even said anything about golfing. He is doing some running, that is a good thing. I hope he is not drinking.
He would not have gone to the counseling, gotten his ID, gone to his alcohol classes if I hadn't called around, pushed him and driven him.
I totally don't understand this behavior. He is making me crazy. No I am making myself crazy.
He says he has a job at a deli that he will start next week, that’s a big surprise. I guess I will just have to wait and see if he does.

P - tired
E - sad
M - confused
S - I don’t know - I am going to start working on this

Where is my beautiful, happy, perfect family?


What happened to my beautiful, magical, happy, perfect family?

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

October 21, 2009

Where did my beautiful, magical, happy, perfect family go?

My name is Lynn, I am a codependent and my family is full of alcoholics.

I have been goggling my bottom off trying to find anything that will help me figure this out.

I ran across a blog http://howismyson.blogspot.com/ that has inspired me to try blogging. Debby is writing my story, although it is a tad different.

My son is an alcoholic and has pancreatitis which will kill him if he continues to drink.
My husband is an alcoholic, he is not abusive in anyway, doesn't drink to get drunk but he drinks 6-10 beers a night.
My mother was an alcoholic and was suicidal; she died of cancer when she was 45.
My step-father was an alcoholic and abusive, he died of a heart attack when he was 58.
Most of the rest of my family are social drinkers, some more heavily than others. I think that a few more of them are alcoholics. I don't drink; I use to drink once in a while socially up until my Dad got sick. When I was younger I drank a little bit more, going to the bars and what not and typical high school stuff.

Our family started changing about 7 years ago when my father was diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease. I like Debby am in the middle of our journey with my alcoholic son. I am at the beginning of my journey on managing my codependence. I will attempt in the future to bring my blog back to my ugly childhood. Really the beginning is starts when my parents were divorced when I was six years old. I am 52 now.

After reading a couple of postings from Debby, I decided that I should try this.

Ryan, my son, is pushing me beyond my limits. He is 22 years old and lives at home. Everyone really likes him a lot. He has a great personality, is kind of shy. He gets along with everybody, except my husband. It's not that they fight, they just don't communicate. I love him very much.

The last time Ryan was in the hospital was in June. He has been admitted 3 times and spent one other time in the ER for about 10 hours. One of the times he was in the hospital, he was in ICU for 8 days. I thought he was going to die. He had problems breathing, his heart rate was all over the place. They stuck a tube down is nose into his stomach, so his pancreas could rest. Pancreatitis is a very painful experience. There is really nothing they can do except no eating or drinking and pump a lot of pain medication. When the pain is manageable he leaves the hospital. He has been told by the doctors that he has the worst case of pancreatitis they have ever seen.

Every time he has gotten out of the hospital he stays clean for awhile then goes back to drinking, especially when he is around his friends. In late August I was a mess. He was working part-time as a bartender -which I hated. He does not pay any of his bills; I was/am paying his health insurance. I paid his deductible for last year and most of it for this year. Thankfully we had that; we now have two policies’ I am paying for. I really need to rethink that. I pay for his cell phone and for anything else he can con me out of.

Ryan started drinking in high school, I was so involved with taking care of my Dad that I did not notice, and if I did I ignored it and thought it was just something he would outgrow. I am still having problems wrapping it around my brain that my son is an alcoholic. From what I have been told and what I have read, it is very rare someone of his age gets pancreatitis. Did he drink way more than I thought or was he just unlucky to get pancreatitis? I know he has a drinking problem because he would have quit the first time he got out of the hospital if he didn't. Am I still in denial - probably so.

I was my father's caretaker when he was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s; it was a very tough journey. Something I would go through again because I think we were closer to each other when he became sick than we were before he was sick. Alzheimer’s is an awful disease. Daddy didn't live in my home, but it was still an ordeal in the many places he lived - when I was able to find him a place to live, but that’s another story for another day. He died 3 years ago on November 2nd. I hate Novembers. I don't want to do November this year. I dread it; I know something bad will happen. This is what my Novembers have been - my mother died, my father died, my grandmother died, my stepmother died, and my son went in the hospital for the first time with Pancreatitis in November.
I will just bypass November this year.

He lies to me. Everything he says is a lie. I cannot comprehend this. Some of the silliest things he lies about, things that don't even matter he would rather lie than tell the truth. It makes me crazy; I think sometimes I am losing my mind. He manipulates me and makes me feel guilty.

Although I am learning it’s not him that’s doing this to me, it’s me. I have gone to 5 Al-Anon meetings and have been reading Codependent No More, Melanie Beattie is writing my story too. Most everything she says is me, down to almost every sentence.

My marriage is a mess. I don't pay any attention to my other children. Between my husband and me there are 4 kids altogether. Everyone but Ryan has a son. Ryan is my youngest. My daughter is 32 and has a 3 year old and she is expecting twins. She will have a C-section on November 30th or December 2nd. I don't know how I feel about this considering how I feel about November, maybe it’s a good thing. My step-daughter is 27 she has a son who is 5, and my step-son is 31 and he has a son who is 10. My grandsons don't receive a lot of attention from me either.

I am pretty pathetic right now, but a little better than I was.

I was to the point where I didn't care about anything, mostly myself. I don't like being around people, especially anyone that drinks. Anytime there is a family gathering you can bet there will be alcohol and drunk people.

I knew Ryan was drinking but he denied it. I took a big step and found a residential alcohol treatment center for him. We live in a fairly large town, 80k people, but there is nothing like that for him here. I found a place 4 hours away. And like Debby, it was a fight with the insurance company, but I was able to get it done after many tears and phone calls. The only reason they would pay was because of his pancreatitis.

I told Ryan he either had to go or move out. He wasn't happy but he chose to go. I don't think I would have followed thru with kicking him out, I am sure he probably knows this. I am a codependent.

He was there for 45 days; I drove over every other weekend to see him. He came home a week ago yesterday. The facility called me after 30 days and said the insurance company would not pay for him to stay longer. I spent 2 days on the phone and was able to get another 15 days. I did not want him to come back to our home, not because I didn't want him here, because my husband is an alcoholic and I am codependent.

There was a discharge plan in place but I did not know what it was. I had hope that Ryan would take care of it, silly me. I was hoping that he had changed and wanted to take conrol of his life. Control away from me.
Two days ago I called the facility to find out what the plan was. He had appointments for Intensive Outpatient treatment; I got him to that one because it was set for 2:30 on the day I called. There was also an appointment for him to see a job counselor. He missed that, we went there after the counseling session and got it rescheduled. He is supposed to be going to AA meetings almost daily and finding a sponsor, that hasn't happened yet.

Ryan doesn't have a driver’s license. He lost that 3 years ago when he got a DUI.
He relies on family (except for his Dad) and friends to drive him where he needs to go.
He was to do 24 hours of alcohol education and 40 hours of community service, he would be able to get his license back after a year. That was two years ago. He sounds just like Debby's son.
I took him down to the DMV today and he got an ID card.
He relies on me anytime he needs money. I am a codependent. What money he does get from his part-time job goes to clothes or eating out, probably alcohol and any other toys he thinks he wants. He is out of a job now.
I would like to set boundries. This I really need to work on.

I am going to go read now, Codependent No More. Hopefully I can forget my son is downstairs either playing games or downloading music. Hopefully he is not drinking. Hopefully I can forget that my husband is sitting in his chair watching TV drinking beer.
Where did my beautiful, magical, happy, perfect family go?