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Post Info TOPIC: How to detach with love? Alcoholic daughter


Senior Member

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Posts: 126
Date:
How to detach with love? Alcoholic daughter


My 32 year old alcoholic daughter associates with other alcoholics (they meet at least 5 nights a week at bars, plus they meet for lunch and sometimes at homes to drink at other times).  All their get togethers involve hours and hours of drinking.  She feels they are just having fun and what they are doing is normal, and fine. 

I would like to detach from the alcoholism part of her and just enjoy time together as a mother and daughter.  However, she continues to regale me with stories of their partying/drinking exploits (of which I have no interest in hearing about) and her mishaps that result (slipping in shower and cracking a rib when drunk, falling over a speaker at someone's home and breaking it when drunk, tripping and falling, when drunk, and tearing her pants and jacket and injuring herself).  I am astonished that she no longer feels any embarrassment at being so drunk.  Apparently no one she is with thinks there is anything unusual about this. 

How do I detach with love from having to listen to this (today I started trying to just say Hmmm, and other non-commital responses and tried to change the subject but she continued until I told her I found the stories offensive and the behavior disgusting).  I would like to just be able to spend some time with her as I do love her.

 



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Newbie

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Posts: 1
Date:

Perhaps you can tell her that although you love her, you worry enough about her without hearing about her "drunken escapades". Ask her if the two of you can make a pact to talk about anything except her time spent drinking, and as she sits there trying to think of something else to talk about, it just might dawn on her that her life doesn't consist of much beside the drinking.....Just a thought.
Hugs to you....

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~*Service Worker*~

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Posts: 10067
Date:

 

 

For me I would have to inventory the relationship and then set up enforcable boundaries, next I would state the boundaries respectfully and then start following thru.  That is what I did with my alcoholic/addict son and I keep handling his responsibilities back to him.  I got one call from the emergency with him telling me he was out drinking with friends and was not in the hospital stabbed.   I asked him if the situation was serious to which he replied "no, I'll be stiched up and then let go".  My reply was "Okay then...seems like you've taken care of everything.  Talk to you later".  and then I hug up.  I stayed in my sand box and he played in his.  One of his statements to me was "I need to talk with you and I want you to just listen".  I said "okay come over".  He came over and talked...I listened and when he was done he stared at me and said (lod) "well aren't you going to say something"?  I told him I was asked not to speak so haven't planned on it".   He was dumbfounded and before he went I did tell him the "stop sign story" which was "Down at the end of the street is a pole with a sign on the top of it.  The sign is red and in an octogon shape, can you tell me what kind of sign it is"?  He was miffed because  he didn't expect the "little boy test" and he said "It's a stop sign"!!  I asked him "What could the consequences be if you ignored it and ran it"?  and he mentioned several possible outcomes.  "So you'd get stuff you wouldn't like right"? I asked and he said yes.  I finished with "Think about it compared to your current life style and I gotta go".  At that I rose and walked away from him and his life started to change some...not alot and not all at once.  Asking him to leave and telling him "No" and lowering his position on my priority list was about detachment and I always finished with "and I love you".   Your daughter is choosing to blow thru the stop sign...the consequences are hers...you're not up to listening or discussing her life....and you love her; not "but" you love her..."and" you love her.   Keep coming back (((((hugs))))) s



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~*Service Worker*~

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Posts: 2409
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You know my son does this too. I believe it's a blatant attempt at keeping me in a state of fear which means I'm easier to control. It may not be on a conscious level but that's what he did. Outrageous stories of drunken nights where he would be covered in bruises and cuts. He would enjoy telling me but my face would reveal my pain and then he had me. I would then respond to his requests and demands through fear. This is what I'm in recovery for really. Now I know he has a higher power so there is no need for me to fear, I am powerless over him he is not. Thanks for this post because I learned a lot. Next time I will make it clear these stories have no power any longer.x



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~*Service Worker*~

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Posts: 3796
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Ignutah - I used to wear my drunk exploits like a badge of honor at 32 also. It took another few years and me getting closer to 40 to really see it wasn't funny, it had progressed to being dangerous, and also none of those friends were really left and I was doing all that tripping, falling, and breaking things at home mostly...

You don't have to detach and act like her stories arent disturbing. You can offer your opinion but just detach from controlling her and making her accept your opinion. I could see it being appropriate to say "Hrm...sounds like a lot of craziness." or "That sounds like the way 20 year olds act when their parents leave them alone." Part of her might be telling you all this to get you to ease her own anxieties about how her disease is progressing. You don't have to nod or head or stay totally silent. Detaching just means accepting you have no control over it, don't nag, but be true to yourself or you will catch a big resentment staying silent about things you don't agree with. It's your prerogative to say "that behavior concerns me" but it's pointless for you to hammer it home and it's pointless to waste your life fretting about if, when, and how she responds to your words. She's grown.

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Veteran Member

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Posts: 31
Date:

Jerry is so on the mark!!! I went through alot of mental anguish with my now deceased exAH....until I learned to let go and allow him his own consequences. It was by no means easy. Yet detaching I was much happier. Still loved the man deeply just had to do it from afar. Now it is the same with daughter. I've talked gently with her without condemning critisizing ect, ect. Does her consumption bother me? Yes scare me to no end! Yet this time around....I told her I was 'concerned' pointed out the possible losses. I also told her that that would be the last time I spoke of what she could do for herself. I will support her in many ways. Consumption is not one of them!!! I am leaving it to HP this time. Praying with all my heart that the end result will not be the same as her dad's. And yes.....I ALWAYS end each and every conversation/meeting with my children......with "I love you!).....even when I've been upset with them.


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Member

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Posts: 6
Date:

I have found that the response, "Unbelievable" says it all. They can assign whatever they wish.

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Jdlewis



Senior Member

Status: Offline
Posts: 126
Date:

Well, I wrote her an email before I read all your good suggestions-and I said I thought she had lost her moral compass.
She sent me a number of texts telling me I was kicking her when she was down, and that I was her enemy and she didn't want me to contact her anymore.
I emailed her again, trying to use the things I have learned here.
She never responded.

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~*Service Worker*~

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Posts: 2540
Date:

That's why we have the saying....

Let go let God

Time to take care of you. I have and you can too.



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 Lord, put your arm around my shoulder and your hand over my mouth

Speak only when you feel that your words are better than your silence.

 


Senior Member

Status: Offline
Posts: 126
Date:

I still don't know if I am "detaching with love" when I try to explain to my AD that I am detaching (with love)? She is in denial about her A, continually presents her drinking as "what everyone does" (although earlier this week she told me that she hadn't had anything to drink in 3 days and she didn't feel well---because I was trying to detach with love, I made no comments about why I thought she didn't feel well when she deprived her body of alcohol. Is that what I should have done?)

On Monday morning, I wrote her an email explaining that I understand that I cannot control her choices-they belong to her as do the consequences of her choices. I told her that I realize that all my hopes, expectations and dreams for her were just that---mine not hers, and that I now understand she has her own dreams, hopes and expectations and they and the consequences belong to her. I also told her that I would have to set boundaries and if those boundaries were not respected, I would have to detach---with love.

She sent me a text yesterday, and just said, I just got your email from earlier in the week. Nothing else. I don't know if the email made her think I was abandoning her? Do I try to explain some more?


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