When I walked into my first Al‑Anon meeting two years ago, I was a broken woman, although I didn’t realize it then. I went because our marriage therapist suggested it to me. I was hoping to learn how to make my husband sober. He’s the one with the drinking problem, I thought, not me. I thought that he chose to live an alcoholic lifestyle. He did not seem to care that he was ruining his life, my life, and our marriage.
In these past years, I have learned to accept that alcoholism is a family disease and to accept how I let this sickness affect me. Al‑Anon showed me the way to a better life through attending meetings and using the tools of this program. Moreover, I learned that, when it comes to my loved one’s alcoholism, I didn’t cause it; I can’t control it; and I can’t cure it. I caused my own pain and suffering by giving my loved one control of my feelings. However, today I have control of how I feel; I make myself stronger and happier by working the Al‑Anon program. I can also control my needs, wants, happiness, and sadness. I can live my life by my standards and trust in my Higher Power and myself.
Thanks to Al‑Anon, I am having a transformation. I lived for years in the cocoon of alcoholism. Suddenly I have the commitment, strength, and desire to break free, live my life, grow, and feel serene and content. I am broken no more. I no longer take everything my husband says personally when his disease is raging within him. Most of all, I have hope that my present and future life will continue to fulfill my desires and dreams.
By Gwen K., Indiana
Al-Anon Faces Alcoholism 2020