A mother wrote to me: Today I went to my first Al-Anon meeting or at least that is what I thought I was going to. Instead it was the Narc meeting for the users. So instead of hearing from family members about their loved one’s addictions, I heard from the addicts themselves. It was very eye opening and humbling to be there and to hear their struggles.
My reflection: During the many years that Jeff was swallowed by addiction, I never realized the pain that he felt. Dr. MacAfee told me that it was impossible for me to imagine how poorly my son saw himself, that living inside his skin was more than Jeff could bear at times. The heaviness of his reality, combined with all the lies he struggled to maintain, was soul crushing.
Today’s Promise to consider: It’s so very hard not to make our loved one’s addiction about us, not to take their continued missteps personally. Once I told my son, “You have a lot of courage to try to get well again.” He responded quietly, “Courage. That’s a word rarely used with addicts. Yeah, it takes courage.” As a mom, my pain is huge, but I must understand that I will never truly grasp what he is going through. Today, I will pray for strength and compassion.