to the children of the addicts

Subject: to the children of the addicts
From: Richelle Lynne Jackson
Date: 15 Oct 2017

To the children of the addicts :
Let’s be real, some of us decided that we would never be like our parents. We would never stay drunk or be more concerned about a pill than anything else. We have sworn off any type of substance and are even scared to think what might happen if we didn’t. We might have tried a couple things here and there. Some of us liked it a lot and new we better never ever do it again, so we don’t.
Others decided that is all we know and you’ll keep the trend going. You’re addicted and you know it, but you’ll never do anything different, at least you don’t intend to right now. You are comfortable here and you will sabotage any opportunity in life that you can control that would better you. Addiction has been there all along. It’s never went away and what would happen if it weren’t a part of your life?
We are all damaged. Some by the use and allowing addiction to consume us. Others by being the products of what it has made us or done to us.
I don’t do the drugs, I don’t drink the alcohol, but I am sick. I am depressed. I take antidepressants every morning and lay in the bed and cry sometimes. I have no ambition to get up and be motivated. I get up only for the sake of my child. I need someone to take care of. Not in the way you would usually think. I need someone who needs me to “save them”. I can’t save anyone, but I try. I can’t even save myself.
On the outside, I appear to be a perfect example of what you should do coming from the bottom and not having such a fantastic childhood. Against all odds, I have an education, I am a good mom, I avoid all the things that could hurt my child in her life that I wasn’t so lucky to. I’m a hard, dedicated worker and have been since I was old enough to work. I am kind and forgiving. I love people despite their flaws and I have goals. I am not the typical “follow what I know” person.
On the inside, I am dying. Why can’t I save this person or that person? Why do I let people use me and lie to me? Why do I run to everyone’s rescue, even if it’s not my problem? People take advantage of me and I allow it, what kind of smart person does that? Why would I hold myself at such high standards and beat myself up if I am not perfect? Why do I need to be in charge? What’s wrong with me?
After thinking and doing and repeating over and over I have realized I am ill, I am the one who has a problem now. My parent that I have left is sober now for over 10yrs, the other parent allowed the addiction to take him. It’s time for me to do what I should to get better, but why must I be fixed? I didn’t choose this. Well, the truth is this is life. Life is not fair. I am in charge of me and my situations now. I have to take responsibility and acknowledge me.
I have forgiven both of my parents for the situations that have taken place. I do not want anyone to bash them or judge them. Nothing can be done about the things that happened in the past and I know they didn’t wake up one Sunday morning and decide that they would become addicts or alcoholic. They are my parents, I do love them and I know even though they were ill, and had difficulty showing it that they loved me. Their addiction was in the way and masked the true them. I also haven’t had it as bad as some others whose parents left them, or that sold them, or that have been through unspeakable things. I was lucky to have siblings, cousins, aunts, aunts, uncles and grandparents who were always there.
I think I learned to care for people as a coping mechanism. I was the oldest of 4, I felt my siblings “needed” me. It’s hard now, as we are all adults to even look at them as adults. I am bossy and think they need my input in their lives. They don’t, and even if they do they don’t want it.
I am a control freak. Right down to the way someone cleans. That’s right, fights in my house break out because I can’t accept a nice gesture when my boyfriend cleans. He does nothing wrong, but it’s not my way and so I can’t take it. I have to start an argument”; any other woman would be so happy. Unfortunately, my child now says that things aren’t done the right way if it is not the way she does it or has seen me do it.
I am insecure, I need constant reminding and proof that someone needs or wants me in my relationships. “Needy” as some say. I don’t believe or trust anyone. I am always looking to catch someone in a lie or cheating. This has been fed when I have caught lies or unfaithfulness in my relationships. I don’t intentionally seek it, but I end up in relationships that result in this kind of thing. It’s hard for me to trust and even harder to let down the walls that show I care. Needless to say, I am not married or even engaged at this point and don’t even know that I could commit to something that deep. Seems silly especially when I know that I won’t get any younger and do have someone that loves my child as their own.
I hope that we (all products of such environments) don’t let ourselves continue to pay for the things we couldn’t control in the past. We need to be there for us. We have got to get the life we deserve and not what we feel was dealt to us. The past is the past. Let go and begin to live. Why continue to pay for something that you didn’t sign the contract for? Realize that there is no reason to continue punishing ourselves and that more importantly that our children shouldn’t pay for it either. We owe it to them, we owe it to our families, and we owe it to ourselves.

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