Friday, October 10, 2014

Adult Children of Alcoholics--Stats You Will NOT Believe





According to http://www.addictiontreatmentmagazine.com/addiction-treatment/family-therapy/children-of-alcoholics-repeating-the-pattern-or-fighting-to-be-free/

Alcoholism is a scourge that affects all members of the family, not just the alcoholic. The damage is pernicious and inescapable, and has long-term negative consequences for all concerned. An estimated 27.8 million children in the United States are affected by or exposed to a family alcohol problem – and preliminary research suggests that more than 11 million of them are under the age of 18. These numbers do not include children who are affected by or exposed to other drug problems. What happens to these children as they grow up? Are they doomed to repeat the pattern of alcohol abuse they see in their alcoholic parent? Or are they fighting to be free?

Crime and Violence

Incest and battering are common in alcoholic families. An estimated 30 percent of father-daughter incest cases and 75 percent of domestic violence cases involve a family member who is an alcoholic. COAs are more likely to become targets of family abuse and/or to witness family violence at the hands of an alcoholic parent.
What often happens is that the victims of such violence and abuse shoulder the blame for what has happened to them. They often turn to alcohol themselves as a way out of the pain of guilt, shame and helplessness they feel. Their childhood has been ripped from them, and they are robbed of normal childhood experiences. How can this not negatively impact COAs?
How it all plays out has a lot to do with whether or not they receive treatment while they are still children. COAs, if not treated when they are young, will carry their problems with them into later life.
Alcoholism is a key factor in 68 percent of manslaughters, 62 percent of assaults, 54 percent of murders and attempted murders, 48 percent of robberies, and 44 percent of burglaries.

Factors that Make Parental Alcoholism Worse for Children

According to research from the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) (http://pubs.niaaa.nih.gov/publications/FamilyHistory/famhist.htm), a person’s risk increases if he or she comes from a family where:
• Both parents abuse alcohol and other drugs
• An alcoholic parent is depressed or has other psychological problems
• Parents’ alcohol abuse is severe
• Family conflicts lead to aggression and violence

Co-Dependency

Family members – children and spouses – of an alcoholic frequently become co-dependent. That is, they are addicted to another person’s alcoholic behavior.
Sometimes, the alcoholic (parent or spouse) will discontinue drinking for a short period of time. This leads the COAs and spouse into a falls sense of security. They believe that everything’s okay, the problem is solved. It isn’t.
Children of alcoholics often feel responsible for the problems of the alcoholic, believing, wrongly, that they somehow created the problem. They internalize these feelings, ultimately suffering tremendous guilt, shame, and sense of helplessness and hopelessness. They may try to hide the evidence of their parent’s alcoholism, or make excuses to others for parental absence at functions, lie to friends, school, employer or others about the parent.
They may either serve the alcoholic parent drinks or try to get rid of the stash of alcohol. Both are attempts to stave off the problems that may ensue from an alcoholic parent getting out of control, erupting into violence – or to just keep the family together.
This is co-dependency. The co-dependent children and spouse of an alcoholic soon forget about their own needs and desires. They’re too busy looking out for or covering up the problems of the alcoholic family member. They may attempt to cure or control the drinker – to no avail.
COAs learn how to tiptoe around their alcoholic parent. Fearing reprisals, they try hard to please the parent in a never-ending and fruitless attempt to get the parent to stop drinking. By denying the problem exists (parental alcoholism), the COAs and spouses enable the alcoholic to continue his or her drinking and not face up to the troubles such drinking causes.

Advice for Children of Alcoholics

Just because the parents drink to excess doesn’t mean the children of alcoholics need to grow up to become abusers of alcohol and drugs themselves. It only means the risk is greater. But there are things that COAs can do to minimize the risk.
• Avoid underage drinking – Research shows that the earlier a child begins to drink, the more likely they are to become an alcoholic or to abuse other substances as an adult. Drinking that starts before the age of 14 puts children at higher risk of becoming alcoholics – both due to genetics and environmental factors. And, underage drinking is also illegal.
• Talk to a health professional – Children whose parents drink to excess should seek help from a health professional. This can start at school by talking with a school counselor or nurse, the family doctor, or member of the clergy. These people can recommend groups or organizations to help children avoid problems with alcohol. Adult COAs who have already begun to drink can use the assistance of a health professional to assess their drinking patterns and determine if they need to cut back and, if so, get help on how to do so.
• Adult COAs should drink moderately, if at all – Guidelines from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and the U.S. Department of Agriculture suggest that moderate drinking for an adult should be no more than 2 drinks per day for men and 1 drink per day for women. This is true whether or not the parents were alcoholics. Naturally, there are some people who should not drink at all. These include pregnant women, alcoholics in recovery, people who take certain medications or have certain medical conditions, and people who plan to drive or engage in activities requiring attention or skill. Adult COAs, if they plan on drinking moderately, should pay careful attention to alcohol consumption. It may be harder for them to moderate their drinking, and they can easily pass from a casual drinker to a heavy drinker or even a hard-core alcoholic. As drinking increases, so does the risk of alcohol-related social problems such as violence and trauma, and drinking and driving, and medical problems associated with alcohol, including liver disease, brain damage, and cancer.

Alateen, Al-Anon and Alcoholics Anonymous

Children of alcoholics can get help by attending meetings of an organization known as Alateen, which, along with Al-Anon for the spouses and other affected family members of alcoholics, is affiliated with Alcoholics Anonymous (the organization for persons dependent upon or addicted to alcohol and other substances). The fact is that children and spouses of an alcoholic require treatment just as much as the alcoholic. Alateen and Al-Anon are the two most successful organizations for helping children and spouses of alcoholics. They are based on the 12-step A.A. principles. Their goal is to help family members understand that they are not responsible for the alcohol dependency of another family member. Their own recovery does not depend on the alcoholic getting better.
A school counselor, nurse, or nurse practitioner can give support and information to COAs on how to find Alateen meetings.

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Adult Child of Alcoholic STOP-LISTEN-ACT-The Invisible Child Abuse



As a Life Coach for Adult Children of Alcoholics, I am so thankful for all of my clients faith and trust in me.  Because of the work I do with them, I am afforded the opportunity to craft concepts and formulas that truly help transform their old ways of thinking


I never get tired of saying:

  • that the brain is a computer
  • baby brains are the most absorbable of information
  • babies and children born to alcoholics--are absorbing corrupt data
  • brains can only run on the programs that have been inputed into them
  • by the time a being is an adolescent-he/she is out in the world living off that corrupt data
  • alcoholics-live in denial-below the veil of consciousness-children live above the veil of consciousness-in real time-mind, body and soul
  • children of alcoholics-feel the gap between mom and dad
  • the gap is cold and void of emotional connection
  • the lack of authentic connection to mom and dad creates a psychic wound
  • the wound imprints the child with the feeling that they are unlovable and unworthy
  • the more a child trusted his/her parent the deeper the wounds
  • because trust in others is broken-the child cannot learn to trust his/her instincts (higher self guidance)
  • because the child has never received positive and appropriate mirroring of Self from mother and father-the child will spend his/her whole life seeking validation from others (outside of Self) 
  • adult children who have been abused physically will either be abusive or attract abusers
  • alcoholics do not allow others to call them out on their alcoholism and when others do, they lash out at those trying to help them in an attempt to protect their supply of escape (alcohol)
  • siblings of these families tend to be disjointed as trust has never been able to flourish within the dynamic
  • the brain never stops learning
  • once the adult child of an alcoholic is able to conceptualize what went wrong, when and why, the brain relearns new data very quickly
  • telling an Adult Child to just get over their childhood--is abusive and invalidating
  • helping an Adult Child become self actualized is the key to healing
  • healing is 100% possible
  • there is nothing broken in an Adult Child of an Alcoholic
  • there is only corrupt data-repressed emotions and limiting beliefs
  • learning to feel what one feels is key
  • allowing the emotions to surface is essential
  • emotional cleansing exercises are extremely cathartic
  • the Higher Self is coded into a beings DNA
  • god lives within us--not outside out there somewhere
  • clearing the old--makes way for the new
  • Adult Children of Alcoholics can and do die to the old, resurrect their Higher Self's and can and do become reborn
I know this--because I experience the birthing of new souls each and every day of my life through my coaching practice.

Today I would like to share my Stop-Listen and Act exercise.

All human beings consistently experience moments of intuition, when their Higher Self (holy spirit) sends them some impulse to try something new--to make a phone call--to go to a website or whatever.

Normally ACoA's discredit the impulse--judge the impulse--minimize the impulse and sometimes even feel guilty about the impulse.

WRONGO! 

WRONGO--thinking Dear One...but understand--that kind of self sabotaging thinking process represents data--a program you were brainwashed to believe in, that's all.  It is NOT you--does NOT represent YOU. It is just what your brain has been taught to do.

Today I want you to STOP--everytime you hear or feel an intuition or impulse from Higher Self.

Then I want you to LISTEN--to what your Higher Self is trying to tell you.  

Then I want you to ACT in at least three small physical ways to validate--justify and honor the impulse.

So if you have the impulse to take a yoga class, I want you to immediately;
  1. write the impulse down on paper
  2. research the closest yoga studio to you--find a time that works for you
  3. then go to the yoga class
At same time--ignore the CORRUPT BRAINWASHED INTO YOU DATA that shows up in your mind.  Allow them to be--just don't attach to them

Be prepared Dear One...when you begin living in the NOW--you find God--you find YOU--and you find JOY!

Baby steps Dear One...step by step--you begin acclimating back into the world of the living.

Namaste...YOU ARE ENOUGH!

Lisa


Sunday, September 21, 2014

Adult Child of Alcoholic--The Invisibly Wounded--You Cannot Serve Two Masters

On the road to recovery, many adult children from dysfunctional homes discover that although they have gathered a plethora of healing jargon along the way, they very often get stuck somewhere along the journey.  Many clients have expressed this feeling of being stuck as one that causes them to feel inept and too broken to ever truly recover completely.





Emotionally manipulative parents wound their children in ways no one could ever truly imagine, as the suffering of an ACoA lies deep within the beings perception of Self.

In spite of the divine truth being, that ALL beings are born perfect, self perceptions held by wounded adult children exist at what feels like the core of that being.

I am not a religious being, but I have great respect for the knowledge and wisdom that is found in various philosophies.

The Bible is perhaps the most concise psychological book that has ever been written. Plagued however, by all too many religious dogmas claiming various teachings unto their own--and for their own agenda's, many innocent beings are turned off by fear based doctrine.  I suggest that one consider the teachings of such great works like those found in the Bible, as a tool that can be utilized during emotional recovery.

For one, The Bible teaches that one cannot serve two masters.  In my own life, and in the work I do with my clients I find that when a client is able to accept that at his/her core he/she is divine and holy, their healing progresses rather swiftly.  Serving two masters; the ego and the Spirit Self is not possible.

What is possible, is understanding that before all that has been YOU were created in the image and likeness of Creator God, and that all the 'ugly things and mishaps' along the way that you have been a part of were the direct or indirect result of your parents inputing into you data that is corrupt, then you are able to more easily serve one master; the Master Self.

Christ's teachings are so perfect!

"Be In the world not Of the world!"

Yes Dear One--it is possible to be In the world of illusion and duality--and choose to serve the Divine Self.  It is possible to be surrounded by people who are lost and in denial--and at same time--hold true to your new understandings of your true Divine Nature.

When one is able to put into 'concrete context' the idea that healing requires us to serve one master--The Self--The Divine--Holy--Miraculous--Stupendous--Incredible Holy Spirit Self--healing becomes so much like ironing the wrinkles out of a silk blouse.

It is one 'aha' moment after the next.

YOU ARE AND ALWAYS WERE ENOUGH DEAR ONE!

We Truly Are One!

Namaste from My Heart...

Lisa

1 out of 5 Of Us Is The Adult Child of an Alcoholic--7 Million Children Are Living With an Alcoholic Parent RIGHT NOW!

One out of five adults have lived with an alcoholic parent in our lifetimes.
Those are alarming statistics. Here's another one.
A new report shows 7.5 million children under age 18 (10.5 percent of this population) lived with a parent who has experienced an alcohol use disorder in the past year. According to the report by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) 6.1 million of these children live with two parents—with either one or both parents experiencing an alcohol use disorder in the past year. (SAMSHA)


I cannot help but think about the consequences these facts create.
We know that one out of five, (and some argue that a closer figure is 1 out of 4) children have lived with an alcoholic parent in their lifetime, then it is time we as a nation address this issue head on in our School Systems.

Children who are being neglected, traumatized and abused at home do not have the mental capacity to focus on learning reading, writing and arithmetic when they are at same time worried about whether or not mommy or daddy is going to beat them when they walk through the front door, or be in a drunken rage.
As a Life Coach who specializes in Adult Child of Alcoholic recovery, I experience daily the lifelong consequences of childhood trauma that is created by being raised by the self absorbed, emotionally, verbally, psychologically and sometimes physically and sexually abusive alcoholic. My clients carry the invisible wounds of childhood trauma. And because of the catastrophic and undeserved pain that is created by being the child of an alcoholic, self worth is often times non existent within their being.
As an Adult Child myself, I empathize with the enormity of the life challenges that become a part of the everyday existence of a wounded and shamed ACoA. Healing however, is possible. I know because I have done it. Undoing what has been done is a process that requires patience, understanding and trust. Without trust in 'something' outside of the Self, it is more than difficult for an ACoA to ask for help--or even accept it when it shows up.
Adult Children include those of us whose grandparents, Aunts and Uncles were alcoholics as well. Because chemical addiction is a dynamic that is earmarked with denial, enabling, fear and shame, it matters not if you were raised in a blatant alcoholic home, or if you were raised in a dry home where alcohol was not visibly abused. In my experience, helping to unravel the dysfunctional belief systems of an Adult Child from a dry home is sometimes more difficult because the abuse they suffered was covert, as there was no 'thing/substance' to point at and identify as the causing agent of their parents core issue.
If you are an Adult Child of an Alcoholic, know that I see YOU. I see YOUR wounds. I know YOUR fears. I feel YOUR pain. You Dear One--are not invisible, not to me and not to those like me who have carried the same cross.
Dear One, it is time to come out of the closet--to step into your truth--and to allow the shame to drop from you--like an old tattered coat. Whatever shame you have carried--know this--it was never yours to begin with.
Namaste Dear Ones...Namaste...