Wednesday, September 11, 2013


Yesterday Annette posted on her blog about a family wedding and seeing her two kids drink. She said it bothered her greatly and after the wedding she was very emotional about the episode. Her kids did not get drunk but it was just the fact of a joyful occasion and seeing them drink was upsetting.

It's best if you go to her page and read her experience. She writes it very well. And chronicles what she needed to help herself.

I made a comment about PTSD. I know, I can hear you all now, quite a diagnosis from someone 1000 miles away. However I feel I am very qualified. Probably most all of you have a copy of my diplomas and degrees hanging in your bathroom, they come in 500 sheet rolls.

Parenting an addict or loved one is a traumatic experience. Being raised in an alcoholic household has a long lasting effect. I spoke to a friend and she related how she feels even today after 30 years when things are out of hand and a male raises his voice.

Not to minimize the effects of war on soldiers but all of us can suffer the effects of trauma on us very deeply when such an emotional event goes on for such a long time.

I have my own experiences. When I speak to other parents especially parents new to experiencing the effects of drugs and addiction on their's hard and sometimes impossible to keep my own emotions in check. Feelings of fear and hurt take over even after years of sobriety by my son and thousands of words written by me about taking care of myself and detaching.

Long ago I wrote about putting those memories in a box in the closet. I related to Annette that at times my box is opened. I also said something yesterday in my comment about "I don't know how to throw away the box." I have been doing a lot of thinking about those words since I wrote them to her.

In reflection, I never want to throw away that box. Even with as terrible all those things in that box are they are me. It's not like I want to live in that box again but I want it to always be a part of my life. The pain hurt terribly and I would never choose to do it again but an important lesson learned is that I can if I must. Growth occurred with that life, not just for me but also with Darlene.

PTSD, yes I was traumatized. I still feel the effects. Being aware allows me to heal. The flashbacks and pain doesn't go away, I learn how to deal with it and know what it is doing as it occurs.

I see it sometimes in Alex too. Yesterday in a casual conversation something was mentioned about jail. The look on his face and his immediate response, "I never want to hear that door close behind me ever as long as I live."

Later in the evening I was thinking about his response and look. It dawned on me that he got what I was saying over and over for seven years of his using. "Son, please live a life of honor." HE GETS IT.......a life of honor, raising his family, paying his bills, working, no lies, no stealing, living and loving......a life of honor, he is living it every day.


DDD said...

Amen, Ron. Such a great post.

lulu said...

Ron, you are spot on with the PTSD "diagnosis". A couple years ago my therapist explained that I was experiencing PTSD. I looked at him cross eyed and he explained. It did make sense. I call something that "takes me back" a trigger. Call it what you may, we all experience it in one way or another.
About 6 months ago, I listened to a radio show interview with the parents of William Cope Moyers, author of BROKEN. His mother said that today, 18 YEARS LATER, if the phone rings late at night or she hears a car squeal, she momentarily goes back in her mind to those 18 plus years to the days when her son was in active addiction. I think she even referred to it as PTSD.
Thanks again for your insight.

Annette said...

LOL, you made me laugh....of course you are qualified from 1000 miles away!
These feelings of discomfort seem to be a commonality that many of us share in this world of addiction and alcoholism. Whether its our kids, spouses, parents, siblings....tonight at the meeting I attended, the speaker talked about what a "powerful" disease addiction is. It most certainly leaves its mark everywhere it touches. I am so glad that Alex has found its way OUT of the cycle of his addiction. Bless his heart.

Syd said...

PTSD about addiction whether it be alcohol or drugs is real. I believe that it can come back to make each of us who have lived with it feel anxious.

John Burns said...

People often don't associate PTSD with addicts and their caretakers. But, it can- and does- happen to them too. After all, even addicts have triggers. Great post, Ron!

Nurse Jon said...

One of the things I teach the caregiver of those I work with is the need to take care of themselves. If you kill yourself taking care of the one you love, you cannot take care of the one you love. Or ones you love.

Ironically, one of the things you can do to help yourself is the same that can help those addicted.

It is called the water cures.

To get the brain and body to reboot, it needs to be properly hydrated. To help overcome the PTSD you need the same thing.

Think of PTSD as a carbuncle or in its mildest form a big pimple. Not until it is lanced or popped will relief come.

Unfortunately, the pain is from inside. It is not possible to lance or pop it.

So, the next best thing, detox. However, this in not your ordinary detox. You have toxic emotions and stress.

The best way to fix it is help your body do what it does best, repair its self. You do this by giving the building blocks it needs. One of the building blocks is water. Another is sodium and then a myriad of minerals.

These all come in the water we drink and unprocessed sea salt. Together, they are the water cures.

Before you do this, read the section on the Herxhimers Reaction... and think of these as emotions rather than toxins.

You may be able to make an even more powerful argument and post about this.

The water cures requires you use unprocessed sea salt.

Another thing that might help, EMI. When you go to this page, scroll down to Z tracking eye movement / EMI. I use it with all of those I treat. It is easy, simple, free and it works.

Best wishes on your journey and how ever you fare, may you fare well.