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Unread 01-18-2017, 09:17 AM   #1
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Default The emotional roller coaster...

I have an alcoholic emotionally dysfunctional mother who I am growing very very weary of. I have been trying so hard to get my life together despite all of the dysfunctional traits my upbringing has caused. I am in a great place. Stable. Healthy. Generally I feel at peace about where I am. I have never felt better in myself.

But when I see or speak to my mother, I snap out of my 'zen' state. These days she is always either drunk or hungover. There's nothing in between lately. Even after 20 years of dealing with her alcoholism, seeing or hearing her in this state causes me extreme stress. My body tenses, my heart rate rises, my fight or flight is in full swing.

98% of the time I manage to contain myself. I stick out the one sided overly emotional, narcissistic conversations. I wait until it's acceptable for me to hang up the phone or leave without attracting any attention to myself. It takes me a while to cool down, to get back to my peaceful state of mind. Sometimes half an hour, sometimes a whole day. Usually with my husband reassuring me or reminding me of what I already know. That it's not my fault. It's not my responsibility. That yes, she does have a bad drinking problem. And yes, you have tried your best to help her.

I tend to make excuses for my mothers behaviour. Even after all the hurt it has caused me. I know her background, I know her grievances and setbacks in life, I feel empathy and pity for what she's been through. I start to feel like she's in the right somehow. That I am wrong to feel anger and resentment. And then the guilt sets in. If only I was a better daughter, if only I knew how to fix this...

My mind just goes into autopilot sometimes. I really hate this emotional roller coaster that I get strapped into when dealing with my alcoholic mother.

Will I ever truly be able to say good riddance to the roller coaster?
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Unread 01-18-2017, 12:12 PM   #2
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Default Re: The emotional roller coaster...

It's difficult, because it is a classical trigger.
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Unread 03-10-2017, 12:50 PM   #3
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Default Re: The emotional roller coaster...

I also struggle with this.

My mother is not the alcoholic, but her needy codependent clinginess has increased as she has aged. I think with her there is guilt perhaps? My father stopped drinking 20 years ago, but I think in her heart she knows that our upbringing was fu**** up and she is trying to make up for it. You'd think that I'd be ecstatic, but I'm not. It's still a dysfunctional family. We are not close. It is fake and it is sad.

I also lose my Zen whenever I see that she has sent me a text or that she wants me to call her.

I do have a few ideas that have helped me, so I will share and I hope that it helps you.

1) structured low contact. I do not instantly text her back (I wait a day or two) and I have stopped calling her once a week(for years I used to call her every Monday at 5:00). Basically I try to take control of our correspondence because I never want to be taken off-guard.

2) I have written up a cheat sheet. If she tries to make me feel guilty (ex. if she says, "why aren't we as close as we used to be? Why don't you call me every week anymore?" etc) I look at my cheat sheet and read from it. "Mother, I am sorry that you feel like we don't talk as much. Yes, it is true, I don't call as much. my life has changed. I am seeking happiness and health and I am sorry if you feel bad about that." and then I change the subject ("how is the weather?" lol) Last year (when I started low contact) she got angry and started to yell. I interrupted her (can't believe I did that!!! but the cheat sheet helps!!!) and said, "Mother, you are not going to yell at me. i am an adult, not a child and you will not yell at me. I sense that you are angry, so I am getting off the phone. We can talk again when you feel better. Goodbye." Let me tell you, my heart was pounding, but I did it! So try to think of all the stuff she might come up with and have an answer prepped. After that phone call, she sent me this long letter which started off as an apology but after two pages ended up being a (I was such a great mother to you, blah, blah, blah)

3) inner child work. After all, it's my inner child (IC) that gets triggered. My IC still gets scared because she remembers how she was treated in the past (regardless of the gifts my mother now crams into my face).

4) EFT (tapping) amazing how quickly it works.

Again, just a few ideas. But I mostly wanted to let you know that I completely understand exactly what you said and exactly what you are going though
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Unread 03-14-2017, 03:45 PM   #4
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Default Re: The emotional roller coaster...

Healing the inner child!Life long journey indeed.Amazing how quickly the reptile part of the brain reacts to those old triggers.
Helps understanding where it all stems from.
Take care and have a good evening
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Unread 03-15-2017, 06:50 PM   #5
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Default Re: The emotional roller coaster...

quote: "Everything depends on you".
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Unread 03-18-2017, 12:43 PM   #6
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Default Re: The emotional roller coaster...

Unfortunately, alcoholism is not anyone's goal to suffer from. The reason it develops is due to an effort on the sufferers part to find a way to not feel "shame" and "emotional pain". Once the addiction takes over it becomes "more" than an escape and a way to get a break from emotional pain and feelings of inadequacy. Instead it becomes something one cannot function without.

The sad part about this disease/illness which it most definitely is, is that people around the individual can't "fix" the problem. This is something that only the sufferer can fix, but with the right support and help. Often these individuals "never" grew up either which is why they have so many narcissistic behavior patterns. YES, something in their past dramatically affected their ability to develop "healthy" narcissism which could have come from childhood emotional neglect or suffering from a learning disability which contributed to them struggling with "shame". A lot of individuals that develop problems with alcohol are individuals who have some kind of learning disability, they are often gifted individuals, yet they simply don't learn the way society has expected they should learn. If you were to actually visit the AA rooms with a desire to see past the problem of the challenge with alcoholism, you would begin to see the high percentage of these individuals struggling with ADHD, dyslexia and other challenges and they are often actually "gifted" individuals who are builders, craftsmen, artistically gifted and even some are driven and had success, but used alcohol to help them cope with the inner challenge that no one helped them understand and learn what it meant and how to manage.

Some of the most gifted individuals struggled with some kind of "addiction".
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Unread 03-25-2017, 10:19 PM   #7
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Default Re: The emotional roller coaster...

It's a tough roller coaster to be on, I have to say probably the hardest considering you're not the one that wanted to go on that ride to begin with, so how can it be fun???

I've been there, done that, got the shirt.

You will get through this, but you can't let it affect your personal life in any way, otherwise it'll eat at you constantly now and in the future.

You have to set boundaries for yourself to protect yourself, no matter what.
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Unread 04-17-2017, 02:24 AM   #8
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Default Re: The emotional roller coaster...

Quote:
Will I ever truly be able to say good riddance to the roller coaster?
Quote:
Alcoholism is a problem that spreads far and wide, and is one that affects people of all walks of life. Many families are affected each day by alcohol abuse. The problem often goes beyond just getting drunk - emotional abuse, money problems, and even physical abuse can contribute to, as well as be the result of alcoholism. Dealing with an alcoholic parent is never easy, but there are ways to cope. See Step 1 below for more information. How to Deal With an Alcoholic Parent: 11 Steps (with Pictures)
Hello, autumn15. My father had a violent side when drinking. There was no one to talk to. My supplications to God left me disappointed. The influence of the toxic brew likely is the single most perplexing and harsh aspect of my life.

The process of forgiveness helped.
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