Daughter Of An Alcoholic Mother*I apologize for the length of this post*
I'm just days shy of 22, which means it's been about 13-14 years (that I know of) that my mother has been struggling with her alcoholism.
I was about 8-9, when I first noticed things weren't "right" at home. I would open cupboards or closets and find empty beer cans. I would lose something under the couch, and when I'd go to reach for it, I'd find more beer cans. I knew something wasn't right with it all, but at the same time I didn't thing it was "wrong."
Time went on, things got worse, but it all happened so "quietly," if you will. We thought things would get better on their own (how foolish). It all became such a normal thing for us, that we didn't realize the severity in it. I practically had to raise my brother because mom was always "too tired" after work and dad worked a lot. It all progressed so slowly, (or so we thought) and before we know it, it was at it's worse, (once again, so we thought).
When I was about 14, I opened the spice cupboard. To my surprise, I found 13 pint size vodka bottles. I didn't know what to do or to say. I remember immediately bursting into tears because I knew that her alcoholism was much worse than we suspected. I decided to wait for my father to come home from work and I told him. I remember my dad and I talking to her about it, while my brother played video games upstairs. I couldn't even tell you what was even said in the conversation because over the years, they all blend together. You can only have the same conversation a billion times.
Fast forward to 2011. 3 days after my brothers 18th birthday, my mother told me her and my father were separating, and would be divorcing soon after. This was no news to us. They rarely got along and never did anything together. Everything was a fight. The alcoholism took it's toll on their relationship and there was no chance fixing it. A short time after my father moved out, he started dating a woman, (who he is still currently with). My brother and I didn't know how to react, and especially didn't know how to tell my mother. We both agreed that it wasn't our job to tell her and that our father could be the adult and tell her. He owed her that at least. Unfortunately, it didn't turn out that way. One of my brothers friends, (who ironically is the daughter of my dads girlfriend), was the one to accidentally spill the beans to my mother about my fathers new girlfriend. My mom was a mess. She soon quit her job in town and decided to move in with her parents 45 minutes away. With both parents gone, my brother and I had the house to ourselves for about a month, until we were kicked out by the landlord and were forced to move in with our aunt and uncle.
Their separation became so ugly after my mom learned about my dad's girlfriend. My brother and I were instantly the messenger, we had to listen to them argue when they saw each other had to talk on the phone, and they both talked so negative about each other to us. It was terrible and unfortunately, it's still ugly, not as bad as it used to be, since they don't speak anymore, but it's still terrible. My brother had to have two graduation parties, which I think broke his heart, but he knew that is was impossible to have my parents plan something together, let alone be in the same room together.
Late August 2011 slowly rolled around and I couldn't be happier. My brother was going to college, so I decided to finally go to. I didn't go to college as soon as I graduated. I didn't feel like I was ready and I didn't want my brother to be home alone. That all being said, I was moving 4 hours away to go to college and was happy to finally do something for myself. I knew there was nothing I could do for my mom anymore. Her drinking progressed so much that I couldn't even carry on a conversation with her.
I was home for the weekend to celebrate the birthday of one of my best friends. I was just about to leave for dinner when I received a phone call from my grandmother in a panic. She told me my mom was being taken to the hospital by ambulance. She said my mother began seizing at their house. I was soon at the hospital and I had no idea what to expect. But at the same time I knew exactly what to expect. Just as I suspected, it was a grand mal seizure.
Six weeks later, I was home again. It was Thanksgiving weekend. That Sunday, I was packing my things to go back home, and once again, I received a phone call from my grandma, in a panic. Mom seized again. My cousin saw it. It was his 18th birthday. If he didn't act right away and take charge, my mother would no longer be here. We were once again at the hospital, but this time it was different. My mother would not be returning home with us. She was admitted into BHU - detox, through court order. (With her court order, she had to stay sober for 6 months) They say the average time in detox is 3 days. She was there 8 days.
I went back to school that night, but I couldn't focus on anything. I came home that Wednesday. My brother and I went to visit her everyday. I don't know if that's a good thing, or a bad thing. She was so out of it. She didn't know who we were, she didn't make sense, she constantly asked us to help her escape. This was extremely hard. Honestly, probably the hardest part of her alcoholism. Her alcoholism caused us embarrassment, financial struggles, & we had so many arguments, even with all of that, seeing her like this, was the worst. After 8 days, she was allowed to go home.
My grandparents made sure there was no alcohol in their home. My mother would go to my uncles house and use his computer, because it had a better printer, she claimed. One night she was there and my aunt and uncle went to bed. My aunt woke up to use the bathroom in the middle of the night and noticed the light on in their computer room. She found my mom passed out in the computer chair. This violated my mothers court order, and off to detox she went again. This time she was there for three days, but she wasn't allowed to go home. She had to go to an "in-between house." An in-between house is a home for addicts when they are on their way to rehab, but there are no openings. So they go here. My mom was there for 2-3 weeks. A court date, a missed Christmas, & a new year later, my mom was finally in a rehab center.
While she was in rehab, she was clear headed, she laughed, she seemed genuinely happy. It was the closest that we've ever been in my whole life. I finally felt that I had a mom. I never got to have that growing up and I finally had that bond that I've been waiting for.
Which brings us to roughly today. My mom has been out of rehab for nearly 7 months. She has drank since she has been out, numerous times. She has never come out right and told anyone about it. We have just caught her with bottles and she finally confesses. She claims she's sober, but I can tell she's not.
I can feel myself pushing away from her because I'm so afraid of getting hurt by her. I know I can't change if she drinks or not, but I don't think I can handle losing my mom again. I know if she drinks and then stops, she has a very high chances of having another grand mal seizure, and has a very low chance of surviving it.
I know I can't cut her out of my life because I suspect her drinking again. I just don't know how to deal with it anymore. Up until know, I have always felt like I can do this. And now, I don't know if I can.