The Relationship Between Substance Addiction and Domestic Violence
Live Fast, Die Young, Leave a Good looking Corpse
For the first Forty-Five years of my life I maintained a life of High Alert that pertained to this motto.
Live fast; so that the pain would never catch up to me and present itself as a learning tool that would be able encompass the concept of compassion. My workaholism and always being in the captivity of activity keep me as far away from being able to look at my life as well as teaching me to become a champion swimmer in the river of denial.
Dying young never reached my consciousness because my denial was so great. I annilated myself with so much money, men and medication, that dying young was alright because I had experienced it all. I had arrived.
Leaving a good looking corpse was all that was left to hope for. “She looked good in her last days.” I better damn well look good at forty-five with all I had placated myself with.
But happy to say, I have stopped living fast, I haven’t died young, and I no-longer wish to have a good-looking corpse. I want to live out the other 45 years of my life living a life of service and purpose; which has amounted to helping others to understand why one does not want to be living a life of addiction and accepting any form of abuse on any level.
Addiction and co-dependency are often defined as an unhealthy reliance on the control of exterior things in order to fill interior needs. The belief that those hungers can be addressed a physical, material, or financial level alone can perpetuate a continual form of insanity which will keep the alcoholic or the Domestic Violence Victim in the habitual cycle that they are stuck in.
The cycle that usually presents itself over and over again is The Disease of The Family of Origin. We will continue to repeat the past if we enable ourselves to give it the power that it can hold if we don’t look intensely at the patterns that have passed down thru the generations. My Introduction into my book is This book is about the Disease of the Family of Origin and how we unintentionally carry over our patterns of hurts, hang-ups, and habits into the next generation. The generational inheritance that I receive was addiction and emotional woundedness. The legacy I wish to leave a how we can change our generational inheritance through the power of our willingness, love and forgiveness. There are six types of family of origin dysfunction that can generate or create a later adult addiction or co-dependency:
1. Active abuse: a parent’s pain or frustration is discharged against or protected (enabled) onto a child. Any form of direct physical, verbal, or sexual abuse can be classified as active abuse.
2. Passive abuse. Passive abuse occurs when key elements are missing in a family a child growing up needs fifteen to 20 years of steady, consistent loving from 2 sane, sober, relatively happy parents. And of course one of the greatest ingredient for a healthy child is to come to understand the importance of self-love and the extreme damage when it’s not in place.
3, Emotional incest: Typically, in families where one or both parents are in some way emotionally or physically disabled, a young child will begin to assume parental or spousal responsibilities toward the parent. The etipole complex is now just being brought into the light of the damage that occurs with emotional molestation.
4. Unfinished Business if parents have not made peace with the disillusionments, defects, or limitations in their own lives, the child may pick up their unfinished business.
5. Negative messages about whom and what the child is. These are spoken and experienced messages that destroy feelings of self-worth and become a part of the child’s personality.
6. Split-off feelings or needs. In dysfunctional families, members deny their feelings and bury their needs. These needs will later try to assert themselves, but may do so in very damaging ways.
My book is loaded with examples of the damaging ways I was able to transcend my feelings thru men, money and self-medication.
It took many painful experiences for me to get real with my denial. The loss of my daughter, realizing I had the capacity to kill my spouse before divorcing him became an option, not being able to maintain a life that incorporated me being fully present for my children. Denial became a cloak of self-deception that blinded and shielded me from an honest assessment of my own dependencies. Addictonologists now believe that the emotional and spiritual components of withdrawal from any addictions are far greater significance than the physiological dimensions.
My favorite line is: I should have been taken from the birthing room and placed in the recovery room. If there is a 12 step program out there for any thing, I should be in it. My sponsor informed me there are 238 12 step programs out there. That covers me as far as a meeting a day for a year. I wake up and try to decide which addiction is ruling me today. I was told to treat my addictions in the order that they were going to kill me. Self-medication was first on the top of the list. Men were next because of my codependency along with my Love and Sex addictions, which I’m making great strides in seeing the role they play as a Domestic Violence Victim. It was the entanglement of the make-up sex that really keep the cycle of codependency going along with not wanting to end the dependence of needing the unhealthy love entrapment with the cycle of sex. And when I was actively using alcohol as a form of self-medication; I wasn’t able to see what my responsibility was in any of this. We were told not to get involved with another person till after our first year of sobriety, my sponsor said 5 years and then as she says that….she looks at me and says……”because you drank for so long and hard….I recommend 10 years of work before you attempt a relationship, or you’ll just bring in another dead fish.
Money has been very interesting since I have removed my self from the Hamptons where money and my career were my Identity.
Who am I now? I’m a woman who will constantly want and need to ask for help in all facets of my life to uncover the hero that lies within me so that I can continue to heal and be useful in this glorious life that I have been given.