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> Dysfunctional Families, Put the "fun" back in dysfunctional
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pretentiouswombat 
Posted: 04-Mar-2008, 03:03 PM
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Yep, unless someone else was paying for it (like my daughter's situation) and then, pretty much, who cares?



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Rindy 
Posted: 06-Mar-2008, 01:26 PM
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Drugs and Alcohol cause so many family problems. People that do these have no idea how it affects everyone including society. I think its really a good thing to hear all of your stories that way we know were not alone. I don't know of a family that hasn't had problems in some way but most of them are due to drugs and alcohol. Just my 2 cents worth today.

Slainte
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pretentiouswombat 
Posted: 06-Mar-2008, 02:14 PM
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I know my ex's family has alcohol problems and I was always after him that he didn't NEED that beer every day when he came home from work. So, I was a nag about it but I didn't want to see him fall into the same pattern. I know he drinks - don't know how much - but I'm not there to be the nag anymore.

Now my SO has alcoholism in his family (I know how to find them, don't I?) and he doesn't drink a drop. Thank you, lord. In fact, I almost never drink because of that. We've been together nearly 5 years and I probably have less drinks per year than you can count on one hand. (Exception is the occasional Guinness, of course)

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ctbard 
Posted: 07-Mar-2008, 03:33 PM
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My daughter in California just called and yelled at me because I didnt call and remind her that it was her fathers birthday, does anyone remind me of things??? I think not.


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Rindy 
Posted: 08-Mar-2008, 04:58 PM
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QUOTE (ctbard @ 07-Mar-2008, 02:33 PM)
My daughter in California just called and yelled at me because I didnt call and remind her that it was her fathers birthday, does anyone remind me of things??? I think not.

LOL funny how things work isn't it???? Without Moms the world would fall apart.

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Slainte to all women!
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jime307 
Posted: 08-Mar-2008, 09:17 PM
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happy womens day! =)


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ctbard 
Posted: 08-Mar-2008, 11:05 PM
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Thank you Jime307!!
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Rindy 
Posted: 09-Mar-2008, 04:59 PM
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That's very sweet. Thank you jime.

Slainte
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pretentiouswombat 
Posted: 12-Mar-2008, 11:30 AM
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The latest in the saga of the second daughter -

DD#1 was to go to a concert last week to see Flogging Molly. She had to drive down here from her place (Gainesville - about an hour away), drop off her little sister at her dad's house (little one just had her birthday and thought it was totally cool to go spend the night with her big sister), drive to Decatur (another 20 - 30 minutes) to pick up DD#2. They were then to drive to the MARTA station (train) and take it into town to the concert where they were meeting other friends of DD#1 who were coming down from Gainesville. Whew!

Okay, I had expressed my concerns about them taking the train after the concert as I knew it would really be late but DD#1 thought it would be okay. However, after some mulling over the situation, she decided it would be better to drive back to our side of town and leave her car at a 24-hour service station and ride with the Gainesville gang, after picking up her sister. Okay. Well... somewhere along the line, problem child decided to totally change the plans and it threw a major monkey wrench in DD#1's schedule. #2 got pissed, said she didn't want to go anymore, and they had a big fight.

Meanwhile, DD#1 calls me to see if I will drive her to the drop-off point to meet her friends. Of course, I'll take her wherever because I happened to have nowhere to be anyway. Then, she decided that would further complicate things because she'd have to have her people come all the way to my house to get her car after the concert. So, she ended up driving to the meeting place, waiting for about an hour (while I listened to her raging on about her sister - my cellphone was literally burning up by the time we got finished) and her people finally got her and they went on their merry way. I haven't heard the rest of the evening's events yet but I hope it got better.

The thing is, if her sister had just told her about the change in plans at a reasonable time, DD#1 could have just stayed in Gainesville, come down with her friends, I could have met them somewhere and picked up my youngest, and things would have been so much easier. Instead, chaos reigned and complicated everything. DD#1 is an organizer - that's why you can totally rely on her and she was so good at her job in the theatre. That's why she's a supervisor at work now. You can pretty much count on her to be able to get things put together -- and the other daughter is pretty much the one you can count on to toss the plans out the window. It's unfortunately so predictable. sigh.

Sorry to ramble - if you think that was hard to follow, you should have been here whilst it was all happening!
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ctbard 
Posted: 12-Mar-2008, 02:22 PM
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Finally heard from my son today after about 3 weeks, of course it's getting close to his birthday, so he usually shows up for any present giving holidays.
Didnt even call his father last week for his birthday.
Of course he informed me that he and his girlfriend had been evicted from their friends apartment yesterday, so either can I, give him money, take them in, or take in their 2 cats.
It never ends.
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pretentiouswombat 
Posted: 11-May-2008, 10:23 PM
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Interestingly, my wayward daughter turned up today with a Mothers' Day present and a card for my SO whose uncle died yesterday. I actually had Mothers' Day with all of my kids (with the exception of the eldest who was working). Last night, when I was at dinner with my sweetie, trying to keep him company since he was upset about his uncle, my dad called me and told me that my great-aunt died yesterday. What a weekend!

But I enjoyed my day today - first my eldest daughter took me out to lunch and then we explored this great yarn shop (in Virginia-Highlands, for those Georgia gals who might want to know) and then went to Jo-Ann's to get some cross stitch supplies for her. She got this gorgeous yarn at the shop and I have to help her get her knitting skills back so she can make a shawl for herself.

I wanted some coffee, so we were going to stop by Borders (just down the street from Jo-Ann's in Snellville) and my dd#2 was there with my son as they had been out putting in job applications around the area. DD#1 said that she knew her sister had a gift for me and a card for my SO but didn't know if I wanted to see her or not. I have not been mad at her, just hurt and staying away so I was glad that she at least had got me something and I did want to see her. We hugged each other and enjoyed being together. Then I insisted she come over to my house for my "surprise" party and cupcakes that my youngest girls had "secretly" prepared for me while I was out for the day. The kids all had a great time at my house and I got new pictures of all 5 of them together which I promptly put up on facebook for all to see.

So, although the weekend started out badly, it has ended up quite wonderfully.
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lschillinger 
Posted: 13-Jan-2009, 10:25 PM
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I have a serious dysfunctional family (hehehe don't we all!) and was wonder if anyone else has been in this situation or can offer any insight or advice.

My sister has been dating the same guy since she was 14 (she's 22 now). He has always had a serious drinking and anger problem. He was arrested several times before he turned 18 and several after (I believe he is at 3 felonious assaults). He has been drinking and getting violent with my sister for years. To make matters even better, my mom passed away three years ago. I moved and both my brother and sister moved in with me. At the time my brother was still in highschool. To make matters even worse in some regards, this boys mother passed away five months after ours, which made the bond with he and my sister even stronger. We welcomed him into our home as well. While he was behaved for a few months he soon began drinking again and got violent with my sister so we had to ask him to leave. Everytime one of these incidences happen my sister says she thought she was going to die and swears never to go back. Of course she does everytime. Often hiding it from the rest of us for months as she knows we disprove. We have welcomed him "back" into the family several times trying to give him a chance, because, of course, everytime he has "changed". While this has been an issue, but we have bent over backwards to help my sister, to convince her to go to counseling or file charges, we had finally got to point of her having to help herself. The bad part is...almost two years ago I had to transfer two hours away for my job. I thought it would be a good thing, making them get out on their own and live life....they were very dependent didn't want to work etc. Well my sister recently had a baby with this guy, and nothing has changed. He is still having these outbursts she claims to have kicked him out, then I find out he's right back there. I love my sister, but I love my niece as well, she is three months old and does not need to be in a situation like this. I've tried to get my sister to move down here and have even offered to take the baby for her. She refuses. The only help she is taking is financial. She is the one supporting all three of them. The father does not work, has never worked as long as I've known him, but my sister refuses to file for any help because she does not want him to get in trouble for not paying child support, and refused to leave his name off the birth certificate. She never wanted kids and isn't really taking to this one that well. She is a good mother as far as feeding changing the baby etc, she just doesn't seem to have had any moments of "giddy mother" and doesn't seem to want to hold her just to cuddle/love her, however, she does love the baby as much as my sister can anyway. I am at the point now where I don't feel like helping her at all unless she comes down here. However, I feel completely horrible for thinking like that. I have kind of taken over the "mother" role for my siblings as we have no close immediate family left. I'm not very good at this and am at a loss!

Sorry for the long winded post... Hopefully someone has some thoughts/advice/insight....


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stoirmeil 
Posted: 14-Jan-2009, 12:12 AM
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QUOTE (lschillinger @ 13-Jan-2009, 10:25 PM)
I have a serious dysfunctional family (hehehe don't we all!) and was wonder if anyone else has been in this situation or can offer any insight or advice.

My sister has been dating the same guy since she was 14 (she's 22 now).  He has always had a serious drinking and anger problem.  He was arrested several times before he turned 18 and several after (I believe he is at 3 felonious assaults).  He has been drinking and getting violent with my sister for years.  To make matters even better, my mom passed away three years ago.  I moved and both my brother and sister moved in with me.  At the time my brother was still in highschool.  To make matters even worse in some regards, this boys mother passed away five months after ours, which made the bond with he and my sister even stronger.  We welcomed him into our home as well.  While he was behaved for a few months he soon began drinking again and got violent with my sister so we had to ask him to leave.  Everytime one of these incidences happen my sister says she thought she was going to die and swears never to go back.  Of course she does everytime.  Often hiding it from the rest of us for months as she knows we disprove.  We have welcomed him "back" into the family several times trying to give him a chance, because, of course, everytime he has "changed".  While this has been an issue, but we have bent over backwards to help my sister, to convince her to go to counseling or file charges, we had finally got to point of her having to help herself.  The bad part is...almost two years ago I had to transfer two hours away for my job.  I thought it would be a good thing, making them get out on their own and live life....they were very dependent didn't want to work etc. Well my sister recently had a baby with this guy, and nothing has changed.  He is still having these outbursts she claims to have kicked him out, then I find out he's right back there.  I love my sister, but I love my niece as well, she is three months old and does not need to be in a situation like this.  I've tried to get my sister to move down here and have even offered to take the baby for her.  She refuses.  The only help she is taking is financial.  She is the one supporting all three of them.  The father does not work, has never worked as long as I've known him, but my sister refuses to file for any help because she does not want him to get in trouble for not paying child support, and refused to leave his name off the birth certificate.  She never wanted kids and isn't really taking to this one that well.  She is a good mother as far as feeding changing the baby etc, she just doesn't seem to have had any moments of "giddy mother" and doesn't seem to want to hold her just to cuddle/love her, however, she does love the baby as much as my sister can anyway.  I am at the point now where I don't feel like helping her at all unless she comes down here.  However, I feel completely horrible for thinking like that.  I have kind of taken over the "mother" role for my siblings as we have no close immediate family left.  I'm not very good at this and am at a loss! 

Sorry for the long winded post... Hopefully someone has some thoughts/advice/insight....

OK -- you won't like all of this, darlin', but bear with me.

You have become a parentalized sibling, as well as an enabler for your sister and her deadbeat lover, and it will wear you down and out without making any real difference in their overall condition. Like pouring your precious self out onto dry sand, a cup of clear water wasted in a desert. You need to educate yourself thoroughly about what this addiction problem in your family means for you, even though you seem to have escaped addiction itself, and make sure you have support and mental health services (even community wellness services for little or nothing, depending on your finances) for YOURSELF, as long as you are involved with your dependent family members. If you can get them to commit themselves to getting proper professional help and staying with it (again, there are services for people who don't have much money, but you need to investigate what those are for your community) then fine, be there for them when they are truly "there" for themselves. If not -- do NOT be there for them, especially when it comes to supporting them financially or being torn apart by the recurrent chapters of their story.

Tell you the truth, my mind is on that infant, because, by your description of the mother-child interaction, she is a prime candidate for an attachment disorder now, and later mental health issues that will go on and on through life. You have instinctively put your finger on the problem: it does take more than a clean bum and a full stomach for a new child's brain and personality, language and interpersonal life to develop, and it sounds like she may be deprived in some ways that can't easily be compensated for later. But even that you can't tackle -- even if your sister let you try to "adopt" her (and I am sure you could do a nice job with that baby's hungry little heart) you will dig yourself in deeper with the addiction issues of the child's parents, who would be very likely to use her to keep you as a close touch for money or whatever else you can provide. It happens all the time. If it should ever look like the child is being neglected or abused, you have the same responsibility as any citizen to report it. That sounds hard-nosed, but it is the truth.

If you find some kind of counseling for yourself, and I really hope you do, they will help you figure out ways to manage the relationship with your sibs so that it has clear boundaries and you don't become another casualty. I wish you the very best luck with it -- it is hard and painful, but the best way through the pain and out the other side is investigating your own support possibilities and beginning to take advantage of them.

Here is a good link to get started just thinking about it all -- also check out the articles under "Family systems theory" at the top of the page. Try not to get too frustrated -- the only behavior you can really change or control is your own, but sometimes, if you prepare yourself as a knowledgeable resource with your own self-preservation in mind, you can do something effective.

My thoughts go with you -- I wish you much, much strength and patience. Keep us posted, we're here to listen if you need it. But also go and find yourself some hands-on help, soon!

http://www.addictioninfo.org/articles/26/1...lems/Page1.html
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lschillinger 
Posted: 14-Jan-2009, 01:27 AM
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Thank you for your reply Stoirmeil. This kind of addiction is something I'm familar with. I've been going to Al-Anon for quite a few years now. We grew up in a household with an alcoholic parent. Who actually did the same sorts of things my sister is going through. I used to bring "repeating history" up to her until I was blue in the face and she insisted that this situation was not the same. She finally said to me the other day she didn't want to raise her daughter to go through the same things she went through. So somewhere inside she is getting it.

My primary concern is for my niece as well. Thankfully she is an excellent baby. My sister at least lucked out there. I will be the first person to call someone if I even suspect something is going wrong. I've thought a lot about that and worried a lot about it. Unfortunately when there is proof or suspcision I fear it will be to late. Shaken baby comes to mind a lot. Thankfully the baby is getting SOME interaction with the babysitter. She takes very good care of her and is as smitten as I am.

I have tried to get my sister in counseling several times. I myself have been seeing someone since my mother died. My company has an excellent employee assistance program and she could go for free, but refuses. I know I am enabling them, and this situation is definitely wearing me out. I'm just at a loss. She knows I'm here for her emotionally, but she only takes my calls or calls when something is wrong or she needs money etc. She hasn't had to buy a single thing for that baby so far. Diapers, formula, everything has been provided for her. She doesn't tell anyone thank you or seem to care that she has been this lucky.

I suppose its just hard to live with myself whatever decision I make, and the answers I'm getting from the professionals have been very generic. For example do what you think you have to do and what will make you feel ok with yourself. Well nothing is LOL. The answer I would like to give is, if she doesn't leave him and come down here I can't help her anymore, but I don't want her to cut me out so I am totally in the dark about my niece.

Thank you for the link. You are right and I am going to look in to perhaps going to see a different counselor. Maybe one who specializes in dealing with addiction and maybe try to chat with someone who deals with battered women, because I just dont get that at all no matter how much I read about it. Thank you for your ear and help smile.gif
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stoirmeil 
Posted: 14-Jan-2009, 01:43 AM
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QUOTE (lschillinger @ 14-Jan-2009, 01:27 AM)
I suppose its just hard to live with myself whatever decision I make, and the answers I'm getting from the professionals have been very generic.  For example do what you think you have to do and what will make you feel ok with yourself.  Well nothing is LOL.

Yeah . . . that's not awfully helpful. Even a little contradictory. What's missing from that equation is the fact that what's good FOR yourself may not feel OK WITH yourself, for a while anyway, while you regroup. It will feel uncomfortable to the extent that you care -- seems like a no-brainer, doesn't it? and obviously you care a lot.

I didn't mean to say a lot of things you already know. It seems like you enjoy a wide variety of topics, so maybe you will enjoy reading in the area of family systems in general. In my studies in psychology, it was never required like development, or cognition, or pathology; once I did look into it, in the context of substance dependency issues, I thought it should be. As you say, no family is perfectly functional, and the dynamics are illuminating no matter what the problems are.

It's good to have you on CelticRadio. I've been enjoying your posts. Big welcome!
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