It is not easy to love an alcoholic. Or trust them. Or even associate with them. I know this because I know a lot of alcoholics. And of course, I am one.
There are a lot of things you can learn about alcoholics from books and medical studies. For some reason, we don’t produce a normal amount of dopamine and serotonin, the happy hormones your brain makes. Alcohol mimics those hormones. And once we have that, we crave it. Our minds becomes sick. Insane. We have no control of how much we drink or how often.
There are way more things I know from experience. Things that made sense at the time. Things that are so insane, but when my next drink was my main focus, I could make sense of it.
Like how I fell in love with alcohol the first time it passed my lips. Like how for the first time in my life I felt happy and alive and fun.
I rationalized all of the dangerous situations I put myself in. It was ok, I was with friends and we were having a good time.
And then, as my drinking got worse, I involved people that I loved. People I should have been protecting. I felt like it was ok to leave my small children alone to go drink. I was not the only mother that did that. I provided a roof over their head and food in their bellies.
And my insanity got away from me without me catching it. My thoughts became delusional. I was convinced that I was a genius. My brain was to smart and too creative and booze was the only thing that could stop my constant thoughts so that I could sleep.
Then, the true madness came. I was stuck in a never ending nightmare. If I was sober, my anxiety level would go through the roof. I was paranoid. I thought people hated me, judged me. The only thing that made me feel better was the cause of my problems. So I chased that delusion of happiness down every bottle. Insanity. I was in my own personal hell.
It got to the point that the booze didn’t even shut down my awful thoughts. I could not imagine my life with or without booze. I would look at my drunk face in the mirror and hate the girl that looked back at me. I isolated. I had become an embarrassing monster that I didn’t want anyone to see.
I knew I had to find a way out or the booze would do it for me. I would either drink myself to death or put a bullet in my head. I am lucky. I found help. I found a way. I have to put my full effort into it every day. I cannot rest.
I know alcoholics are liars and manipulators and we will break your fucking heart. Don’t give up hope. I know that we relapse. Don’t take it personal. The hell we put you through is only a glimpse of what goes on in our heads. We never set out to be this way. It was not a life goal. It is not right or fair, I know. Pray for us. Pray for the alcoholics who still drink and the ones in recovery. Don’t shame us. Don’t judge us. Trust me, we do enough of that on our own. Just pray that we make it out alive. This is a battle we have to fight and win alone, but having cheerleaders in our corner is the greatest gift you can give us.