Last week I wrote a post about adult children of alcoholics. This is a very important subject and one that I am passionate about. My intention was not to box anyone in or slap a label on a person's experience. Yet that post left me feeling like I missed something.
Because I wanted to inform I think I missed the common human experience. It sounds cheesy to say that underneath it all we all are ACOAs but damn it, that's exactly how I feel!
How many of us had parents who gave us conflicting messages? My hand's up. Who had a mother or father who was the best parent in the world one day and didn't know you existed the next? Or shared with you information that was totally inappropriate for a child to know? How many of us were thrust into too much responsibility too soon? Taking care of others when we should have been playing flashlight tag with the neighbor kids? That wasn't me but my older sister didn't like me for a long time because she was stuck with me when I was a baby and she had no choice.
Thank God more is known about parenting today (a word that I don't believe even existed when I was a kid) and about how we effect our children's sense of emotional safety in the world. Our parents did the best they could (as we do) and I've learned that forgiveness goes a long way to recovery. If you are an adult child of an alcoholic please know that I respect your struggle and want to help. Call me.