Enabling Parent

Most adult children of alcoholics go through life never fully understanding the impact being raised by a self absorbed alcoholic has had on them. The double whammy is that in addition to being raised by an alcoholic--in most cases the counterpart--or other parent was a self absorbed enabler. And while on the surface it would seem that most damage would be caused by the alcoholic parent, just as much emotional damage is created by the parent who is lost in their own world almost as if in la la land doing his/her best to pretend that the chaos in the home really isn't all that bad.

Being raised by an enabling parent is like being a child born with a tree limb in your eye your parent refuses to acknowledge. Caretaker type, enabling parents are like sheep with blindfolds on. They follow the lead sheep, and dare not take a different path. When the lead sheep goes overboard, the enabling parent follows. And although the enabling parent may not be drunk, or high on pot, he/she is just as...

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Adult Children of Alcoholics--Dysfunctional Homes--The Battle For a Soul

When a being decides they need to make adjustments in their life, they often do not realize that the adjustments they are seeking will require change. Many beings struggle with the idea of change--yet there is nothing that is--that is not in a constant state of flux.

When you are involved in a dysfunctional dynamic--growth--independence--accountability and self reliance are unwelcome notions. Dysfunctional dynamics generally follow certain invisible guidelines. Relationships that are unhealthy are dishonest. They are about power and control--which includes power and control over how others feel.

A client of mine was recently diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. After talking in length about his family of origin, he revealed that while growing up--his father was totalitarian--and his mother was enabling. His father beat him routinely and made it crushingly obvious that he was disappointed with my client, as he did not wish to go into the family business. At family dinners my clients...

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Negative Thinking

I was recently asked, "Why is it that drug addicts and alcoholics are attracted to me like a moth is to a flame? Why is it that I too, am attracted to people who are so self sabotaging? I don't get it. I confuse love with pity, and I am always thinking negative--like I don't deserve a nice guy or true happiness. Why?"

When I am in the company of a being who is distraught over their relationship, who is coming to the realization that they are the common denominator--I always feel as if I am watching a newborn baby being born. For as a being begins to see self--she/he is in the process of dissolving the illusions cast by the ego.

The ego is that part of our mind that served us when we were small children. It helped us understand our autonomy and separation from others. The ego of one man--is the ego of all men. It is the same psychological predisposition that causes a being to be blind to him/her own magnificent self.

When a child is not taught that who they are is enough--tall,...

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The Child of a Narcissistic Parent

When you are raised by parents who cannot see you--you are in essence being mirrored a sense of not enough-ness. You are vibrationally/emotionally being programmed to believe that YOU--the little divine--magnificent YOU--is NOT enough to gain mommy or daddy's praise, acceptance, validation, pride, joy, or love.

When you are raised by parents who are so self absorbed--whether they are absorbed by care taking for people who should be able to take care of themselves, or by shopping, or by alcohol, or by gossip, or by their physical appearance, or by worrying about what everyone else thinks about them--YOU as the child of these types of emotional vampires--do not feel seen.

When our parents deny us the love, acceptance, validation, compassion, forgiveness, guidance, worthiness and unconditionality we deserve--a hole in our hearts appears. This hole is felt on an emotional/vibrational level, and forever we the invisible children--seek to fill it.

The problem is--until we learn that that...

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You Are Not Your Thoughts

There is nothing that upsets me or excites me more than an adult child of an alcoholic, or an adult child of a dysfunctional home who is on the cusp of being able to comprehend that he/she is NOT her thoughts.

When you are born to parents who cannot SEE you, who cannot HEAR you, who are unaware at how self absorbed they are--in relation to you--YOU never learn to be comfortable in your own skin. Because it is the absolute responsibility of the parent to instill within a child a sense of unconditional love and acceptance--children are not born knowing how to love self. In fact, children learn about their worth or lack of through their relationships with parents. If the parents are dysfunctional, then so will be the messages the child receives about self, others, the world, relationships and love.

As a Life Coach I have had to learn how to detach from the emotions that well up within me whenever a client opens up their heart and bestows me the honor of stepping inside their temple of...

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You Are Enough

If it is true that energy and matter can neither be created nor destroyed--then that means that at the exact moment of the Big Bang--all that would ever be--already was--and that includes you and me.

On my usual and routine hour long drive to work yesterday morning I was struck by the brilliance of the moon--as well as the thought above.

Along my road to emotional recovery there have been many times where I have wanted to dig my heels into the mud and exclaim, "This shit ain't fair, and somebody out there owes me." But as I continued along my journey I eventually pulled my wet emotional diapers off, and learned to accept that the world didn't owe me anything.

Although learning to let go of blaming others for why I felt so crappy was not an easy thing to do, in hindsight it was the most crucial step of my recovery. Standing in defiance of self reliance--never works out. Health is not possible without self responsibility as well as self accountability.

It still amazes me to ponder the...

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Healing the Wounded Adult Child's Heart

As ACoA's and for those of us born to the self absorbed--we were so wrapped up trying to navigate our tiny beings through treacherous emotional terrain--that our emotional set point is one of fear.

As Adult children of alcoholics-we hate ourselves-because we never learned that we were enough. We never learned that we were enough-because our parents manipulated us in various ways-in order to get their narcissistic needs met. We were not 'real, or human or valid' in their eyes. Sadly, we were pawns expected purely to fulfill 'their' needs, and when we didn't--we were neglected, shunned, criticized, hit, scrutinized, labelled, ignored, or punished.

ACoA's are sensitive beings who received all the wrong messages about Self. It is not true that we are not enough. We were always enough-and we were always worthy. Unfortunately we were born into dysfunctional systems that programmed and conditioned us to believe we were unworthy of anything good.

Today, may you find the courage to confront...

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Suicide Poem

Your son asked about you today, 
I didn't know what to say.

Since the day you left, all we do is cry, 
I still, don't understand why…

You should have held on, if not for you--then at least for me, 
When you ended your life, you destroyed what was supposed to be…

Now your gone, and me and your son are left behind, 
Peace--I am not sure---we'll ever find…

I know you were hurting, and in a dark place, 
But you should have never given up--our son's tears I can't erase…

He begged you not to do it…He begged you to stay… 
But you went ahead and left us behind anyway…

I can't help but see your eyes in his baby blues, 
Or hate you just a little, for what he'll have to face because of what you couldn't do…

Its so hard--and now you'll never know, 
What its like to hate the one you loved--for letting go…

When you ended your life…you killed a part of me-- 
And now I wonder will our son ever...

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Poem--The Lessons Of A Tree--Wisdom Of Nature

As a lover of recovery--I am thankful that I have lived long enough to learn to appreciate the power of consistency. Aging has graced me with more than just crows feet.

I have learned to appreciate the need for grounding myself at the beginning of each new day. Once, I was but a feather in the wind, believing myself to be little more than a victim of all things including mother nature. Today however, I am humbled by my past ignorances.

It is not enough to complain about anything. Complaining--implies one believes oneself to be a victim to whatever emotion or circumstance one finds oneself in. Many years into my recovery, I have learned that I was always in the cockpit. Once, I was just unaware.

I get it now--or at least for now at this stage of my awareness--I think I do; God is all that is--and that includes the 'thing' that I am.

This concept begs for the answer to the question then, "What then, am I?"

Years of quiet thoughts spoken only in the isolated chambers of my mind have...

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Letting Go

Its not easy to love someone who is choosing to hurt themselves. When the one we love is using alcohol, heroin or other forms of chemicals to escape the emotional and physical consequences of reality it is not difficult to identify what needs to get addressed. In the case of drug and or alcohol addiction it is obvious that dependency is the issue. In these cases, the family of the addicted has a place to turn. There are innumerable support groups for family members who are dealing with chemical dependent loved ones.

But what happens when the one we love is addicted to a toxic relationship?

Where do we turn, the loved ones of the family member who is losing their Self to a manipulating other?

In this case, its not so easy to let go.

In my case, I have discovered that the same rules must apply.

Loving family members who consistently involve themselves with dysfunctional others--is very similar to loving someone who is drug addicted. No matter how hard you try to save them-they end up...

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