Avatar universal

What should I do??

I am 38 years old.  I have a 9 year old daughter and have been divorced for 5 years.  I am single and have been in 1 relationship since my divorce and that ended horribley bad.  My ex husband is a pretty good father but when it comes to doing things extra for our daughter he is terrible.  Rather then taking out daughter to pick out a Christmas present for me he just picks me up somthing from her, while I take her let her pick something out for him.  My mother is an alcoholic and I can't stand being around her.  I don't even trust her to leave my dauther with her, my daughter doesn't even like being around her when she is as she calls it "in her annoying mood".  I think my daughter is missing out on a lot of things that children are suppose to do with their grandparents because my mother is always drunk.  Since I have been a child I have hated the holidays because she just gets drunk and it isn't much fun.  She would rather stay up and drink when she gets home from work, rather then getting some sleep and then doing something with us.  
I don't even want to get started on failed relationships that I have had, that just makes me more depressed.  
I get some upset sometimes that I ignore my daughter and snap at her over little things.  
I sometimes think she would be better off living with her dad.
I have tried many times over the years to talk to my mom about her drinking and it just makes her mad and she ends up not talking to me for weeks.   I am afraid she is going to die because of her drinking but sometimes think we would all be better off.

I hate my life.
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Avatar universal
Hello, Karen316.

I'm so sorry to read how difficult your life is right now.  Life has dealt you some terrible cards, eh?  It sounds to me as if you're suffering from depression.  This is a natural reaction to all the bad stuff that has happened in your life.  Plus, alcoholics usually have mental health issues such as depression and it's possible that your mom passed the gene to you.  

Whatever the source of the depression, the best thing is to either see your doctor or a mental health professional. Either can help you sort out your feelings and perhaps use medication to help alleviate your depression.  If you need resources, try calling the local Suicide Hotline.  They can give you all sorts of referrals.  Also, the online website for Psychology Today has a listing of counselors, therapists and psychiatrists in your area.  The site will tell you what type of therapy they perform and other valuable background information.  If you have any friends or family in the area, perhaps they can recommend someone.  The key is to get help right away.

As for your mom....  She is in a bad state.  Alcoholics and drug addicts normally need outside assistance to stop drugging and drinking.  There is a TV show on the A&E channel called "Intervention".  They too have a website that lists resources and ideas to help you deal with your mother's drinking.  You can even write to them and if they take your case, they will provide rehab for your mother for free.  Perhaps there are intervention therapists in your area who can help you arrange an intervention for your mom and get her into treatment.  If she refuses help, at some point, and despite the fact that you love her, you may need to cease all contact with her just for your own sanity.

As for your daughter....  Have you told her the truth about what is happening?  Kids can be very understanding if they know the whole story (told to them at their age level).  Not knowing creates fear and anger in kids.   And kids also have this special ability to blame themselves for everything that goes wrong in a household.  Your daughter probably also needs counseling to help her deal with your divorce, your mom and even your behavior at times.  

There is a twelve step group called Alanon.  This is for people who live with, deal with, care for someone who is an addict.  Alanon is great for helping you understand how to get rid of the guilt and anger over your mom's drinking.  Your daughter is not quite old enough, but there is another group called Alateen which is for teenagers.  

And, there is an organization called Adult Children of Alcoholics.  This group helps you deal with the anger and rage from your childhood due to the drinking in the house.  Sometimes, people who grow up in an alcoholic household won't experience the depression and anger until they are adults.  They can't understand why they are feeling this way and sometimes they ruin their own lives without knowing why.  Adult Children of Alcoholics can help you to deal with all these emotions in a positive way.

The key is to first get help for both yourself and your daughter.  Get help for your depression before it's too late.  This is vital. Then, you can start working on getting your mom to stop drinking.  An intervention is a great idea.  Please consider it.

Best of luck and let me know how you and your daughter are doing.

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Avatar universal
The first step (of 12) in Al-Anon or AA is to accept that you are powerless to control alcohol or the person using it. They also say that an alcoholic will not stop drinking unless she chooses to get help. Your attempts to convince her to change her alcoholic ways are not likely to succeed, no matter how well reasoned your arguments. This intervention idea of Curtis might work though.
Even if she gets dry, she will probably have to go to AA for the rest of her life, so that takes a lot of wanting to be dry on her part. She probably can't get cured, so the best outcome may be just learning how to live with it by fighting the drink nag all the time. Even after months of being dry, it might only take one slip up drink for an alcoholic to end up on a binge that they thought would never happen again.
My relative has gone to AA twice a week for 10 years and swears the AA meetings are the only thing keeping him dry.
I have read the AA and Alanon books and attended Alanon meetings. Their meetings involve people trying to help each other and themselves. You definitely get a chance to let it all out at a meeting, or can choose to just  observe.

I don't disagree with anything Curtis offered, except I am not so sure you are in a depression as much as are having a hard time facing depressing thoughts. If you are not in a depression, there are solutions that do not involve medications.
You should see a doc or counsellor for advice to help you sort out your situation as soon as possible.

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Avatar universal
Hi there! Well we can make suggestions, but you have to make the steps in the right direction. I think it would really help if you got into some talk therapy for both you are your daughter. I also suggest you go to some support group, Al-anon can be good for some but the religious overtones can be too much for some.

As far as depression, that would be something that only you and a specialist can diagnose.

We all go through tough times, but it doesn't mean that you are in a state of  depression, BUT saying that there is situational depression. Pretty self explanatory, and once you have figured out or left the situation, the sadness will go.

I never hurts to talk to someone, and learning new coping strategies will empower you as a mom and a daughter.  You can only help you and your child. You cannot fix your mom, she will hit bottom and hopefully then get help. It's not your responsibility to manage or fix her addiction.
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Avatar universal
It is understandable that you don't like being around an alcoholic. Besides their poor judgement, they focus all the action on themselves, so the rest of the family members (you are the lone sober adult in this case from what you have told) are left dealing with a badly behaved and overwhelming presonality.
Your mother is not even able to maintain a good mood with your daughter, but those mood problems are typical for an alcoholic, and she probably doesn't even think she is one. You tried to explain to her the problems she created, but the bottle is the center of an alcoholic's life so it is not surprising that she ignored your advice.
My father, who would never consider abstaining, always blamed Mom the next day for any people problems he created. Like your mother, he was also unable to control himself with his family, but only from 5 PM onward, so I grew up avoiding him from 5 until the next day when somehow he was back to being a somewhat pleasant person. (Putting all htis to paper sure brings back memories of my depression last year because there are many things in common. I mention this only so you can consider whether she has a sweet spot where you and your daughter can interact happily and a sour one to avoid.
WIshing for a different outcome can not change things, so the way for you to achieve peace with her is to accept her as she is, no matter how unfair. I still loved my father until he died, because I considered him powerless to change, mainly because he wouldn't willingly change. That is just the way an alcoholic is, and if they were an iota different they wouldn't be an alcoholic.
Alcoholics are in the grip of a demon and unable to accept that reality, so the rest of the family have to accept that they are just passengers.

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Avatar universal
"Al-anon can be good for some but the religious overtones can be too much for some."
True, but if you live in a city there are lost of these groups to try. The members of one I attended voted out some of the religious aspects.
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