My Dad is 71. I'm 47. This still affects me! (Long) - Forums at Psych Central



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Old 04-22-2019, 08:45 AM #1
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Trig My Dad is 71. I'm 47. This still affects me! (Long)

WARNING: *May Trigger*- sexual abuse, anorexia/bullemia mentioned.

I talk with my dad on the phone a few times a week. I cherish our conversations- when they're good- remembering scenes from my childhood that were wonderful. As a preteen, he began to drink. Life became chotic. Evenings were his time with my sister and me but quite a lot of the time we would be left alone to do homework and find dinner while he slept off his drinking. (Drank in his room?) He was sometimes violent emotionally and physically. But he continued to never miss work or school (he went back to college for his masters) and provided for us. My mom worked evenings as a dance instructor.

These days, he and I have a nice relationship of phone conversations but my sister took her 3 kids to visit our dad last year and he was trying really hard to be a good host and spend timr with them. My sister said "He looks terrible." I saw a photo from that trip- he looks terrible alright- whole body bloated looking, even though he's in his 70s, he looks older than he should. He has liver problems, had a quadrupal bipass amongst various other things. It can't ALL be from his age. He's constantly telling me about how he fell and hit his head on the bathroom floor/side of the shower etc. When he's good he's "ok". I don't see him drunk and passed out any more because we live in different states. I reach out on the phone to send my love.

A few years ago, my dad and his two brothers planned a trip to get together in a central location after years of not seeing each other. My dad was excited and happy! He decided to stop drinking - cold turkey. Not long into the brothers weekend, one of my uncles came back to find my dad laying on the floor in a pool of vomit unconscious. Their other brother was there, too, and it was obvious that he had just left his brother there to die. He was a police officer too! However, an ambulance was called and he was taken to a hospital.

He recovered from that and Im sure went back to his usual routine. He loves his time at Starbucks, for example- lots of friends there.

Then, my dad was rehospitalized for alcohol related issues. My sister flew out to see him. He was speaking jibberish. I have talked with him on the phone and a few times he's made absolutely no sense. He THINKS he's having a conversation but he's not. He was hallucinating- thought people were there talking with him who were really across the country. The medical staff was ok I guess- but I wasn't there. My sister told the doctor that our dad is an alcoholic. He eventually was discharged home.

Its sad to see the sick him and the well him - two sides of the same coin.

I've been dealing with this as an adult since I was about 20. Alcoholism is a horrible disease. Its a terrible addiction that takes over your life. Im so sad that my dad isn't happier. Sometimes he's short with me on the phone which always upsets me.

I know my dad could die any day. I wish it were "just" from old age.

I miss my childhood- up until puberty. Life was wonderful then. If Dad was drinking back then, I have no memory. Family life was great! We went on vacations to Canada to see my dad's dad and mom. With their help, we all went to England when I was 8. We also went TWICE to Walt Disney World with my mom's siblings and mother. Wonderful, happy memories! Unfortunately, when I got to be a teen, we visited my grand parents a few times out in Canada. The family seemed functional! But one of the times, something went on involving my grandfather and my 5-year-old cousin. It was very strange! When I was 18, my dad and siblings "remembered" their childhoods with their pedophilic father. My dad turned to drinking heavily, my aunt STILL has major issues with anorexia and bullemia,.... None of them can seem to get their mental illnesses under control after 30 years! Even in her 60's my aunt still is in and out of hospital for her eating disorder. It's vety sad. I have bipolar disorder- diagnosed at 33. Is part of that from being an ACOA? Who knows.
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Old 04-22-2019, 01:30 PM #2
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Default Re: My Dad is 71. I'm 47. This still affects me! (Long)

An alcoholic death is the most horrible deaths I've seen so I am so sorry this seems to be your Dad's fate. When he gets to a certain point incapacitated or even in and out say your goodbyes and do not go back in. I have watched and alcoholic die and its pretty harsh and hard on the family.
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Old 04-22-2019, 02:48 PM #3
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Default Re: My Dad is 71. I'm 47. This still affects me! (Long)

I have bipolar disorder- diagnosed at 33. Is part of that from being an ACOA? Who knows.[/QUOTE]

It's more likely that bipolar disorder runs in the family, and your dad self-medicated with alcohol...a psychiatrist co-worker of mine told me it's very common, and that he always asks about alcoholism in the family when making a diagnoses of BPD
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Old 04-23-2019, 04:12 PM #4
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Default Re: My Dad is 71. I'm 47. This still affects me! (Long)

It's terrible to read about your tragic family situation, Moose. I am so sorry. I suppose all you can do is try to do the best possible for yourself, but it sucks that this awfulness happens, and that it happens so often.
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