Changing Our Attitudes about the Drunk Will Help!
If you love a drunk – a spouse, a friend, a child, or a parent, may I offer some suggestions and encouragement? Maybe your loved one will find recovery when you learn to approach their disease with knowledge and compassion. Maybe, though, they won’t. But the attitudes you are willing to change about alcoholism and addiction will help you live each day in the strength of the Lord. ( Why Do I have to Change? I Am Not the One Who is Crazy Here!)
I thought if I did not stay focused on their drinking, the alcoholic’s issues would get worse. Al-Anon taught me that if I did stay so focused, MY issues would get worse.
In many ways, I used another person’s struggles to excuse my own lapses in life’s many choices – if not outwardly, then inwardly. I saw clearly what my parents did that was damaging – insane. However, if I chose not to live like they did, I must be Ok, right?
I did not acknowledge the pain that may have been the fire my mother tried to quench with booze. Nor, the agony my father felt as tried to smother with reason, pleading, geographic moves, and isolation. All I saw was that she loved her booze better than she loved me. And boy was that a convenient excuse to look for love in all the wrong places! 🙁
Staying on My Side of the Street
Recovery from trying to control what is not on my side of the street has meant looking at what and whom I love — and how. At the end of Addictions: Banquet in the Grave, Ed Welch asks those of us who love drunks, or are addicts,
“Consider the quote: ‘The worth and excellence of the soul is measured by the object of its love.’ What things do you love?”
I am learning to love differently. The wonder is, here I am: sane and sober. I am praising God for the counseling, and the Fourth Step – which I have taken several times – and Himself, who has been a patient Father, and a wise disciplinarian.
Before she died, my mother found sobriety and the Lord who had been searching for her so long. My father, alas, struggled to end to control a disease that was not his to cure.
“Prayer is not effective when all you see are the offenses of the other person.” C. Jack Miller
How are you doing, dear Reader?
Love in Christ,
Sober and Grateful