Over the course of a few years, my family’s life seemed to spiral out of control. Solutions I thought should work didn’t. I was worn out, and I was out of ideas. I finally took a friend’s advice and came to an Al‑Anon meeting. With grandchildren now in the mix, I somehow sensed that I might be facing some life-long challenges. At meetings, I couldn’t believe anyone was going through anything as bad as I was. That’s because the others seemed happy. They were smiling and making jokes. I wrongly concluded that their problems were solved and that the main reason they attended meetings was because they were so grateful to Al‑Anon for what it had done for them.
In time, I learned that other members were going through serious problems, too, but unlike me, they took better care of themselves. I also saw other newcomers improving. I could see how I had been stuck in a rut—emotionally reacting to every new crisis and spending time examining and regretting the past. I needed help to recognize my feelings, accept reality, and move forward. My load lightened up a bit when I made a friend in the program to talk with. I’d already received plenty of advice from family and friends, but hearing my new friend’s experiences in detail gave me a new and different perspective.
She let me make my own decisions. But even today, when I need to make a decision, I often think of some of the experiences she had and how she handled them. Looking back, my first decisions early in the Al‑Anon program seemed so big, and they were. I am thankful to Al‑Anon for pointing the way towards a happier and healthier way for me to live.
By Gina B., Arkansas
The Forum, June 2020
My 38 year old son has had drug problems, gambling and heavy drinking. He has lost his wife, a 11 year old and a 9 year old boys. He has lost all his money and in dept. Sold his nice truck. He went to a clinic and dryer up. He is finally working but has not worked much since 2014 when the oil crashed. He was a supervisor on the rigs making good money. It’s been rough seeing the downfall.
My husband has a bad drinking problem and it’s come to where he hides it from me in our truck. He drinks and drives and he acts like he doesn’t care. I’ve begged him to get help or go to a AA group but nothing. I have come to an end and I am afraid my children seeing him like this. I’ve got to put my foot down or I’ve got to divorce him. My kids and his kids are scared of him.
My wife is an alcoholic and is 19 days sober. After many years of picking up after her and shielding our children from her drunkenness. The children finally have reached an age of understanding, I can’t cover it up anymore. My daughter & son have been very impacted by what they have seen the last few years. I’m so frustrated and angry about the affects it’s had on my children. The lack of attention and overbearing yelling and punishment they have endured for just being children and doing what children do. ( test their limits ) I’ve had to take… Read more »
Rage and sorrow are what I feel towards these diseases… but slowly the feelings of guilt and shame are subsiding… I did not cause this chaos, I cannot tame the awesome power that drives these diseases… today I can only drive my own ship…
My husband is almost 100 days sober. The past 3yrs have been hard and crazy, we have two small kids and he tried to od before getting sober. He’s been back in the house for 2 months. I feel I am struggling and somehow more overwhelmed than I was before he got clean.
My husband has been an alcoholic for many years and I finally woke up one day and said Detox or Divorce and I will not live in fear anymore. He had tried to quit many times in the past and I knew he needed help. He agreed and now is going through an intensive addiction program. So far 15 days sober.
I was married to an alcoholic.
I have a boyfriend who drinks his feelings and life away. I fear that he won’t be able to stop by himself as he has already attempted without success. I also fear that this alcohol problem will continue to cause us problems as it already reached domestic violence.
I have a brother who is an alcoholic. He doesn’t want to attend rehab. I fear for him in this downward spiral he is in.
Al-Anon Family Groups offer a large list of electronic meetings on a variety of platforms, including Zoom, Skype, WhatsApp, email, and phone. In addition, the meetings are available at all hours of the day, and some even 24 hours a day. Please visit our Electronic Meetings page https://al-anon.org/al-anon-meetings/electronic-meetings/ to access the different options.
I’m trying to find an Al-Anon meeting my daughter is in active addiction I’m going insane trying to take care of her children and worried sick about her. I’ve already lost a son due to addiction
I’m just starting to reach out for help on how to support my spouse with his addiction. I’m glad you found a new friend that understands, and I hope your path is moving forward.