Grieving loss of my dad

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philly25
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Grieving loss of my dad

Post by philly25 »

Hey everyone, thanks for the forum. I'm struggling right now. My dad, who was an addict, died a few months ago and I've been staying sober, but an emotional wreck.

The toughest part is that, while I'm definitely getting support from people in AA, I'm at the point in my recovery (7-plus years) where I realize we're all going through issues and problems. My family is trying to get by, we're all busy, busy.

I am trying not to lean too heavily on people, but I feel like I'm going to collapse some days. I don't want to drink, but there's a part of me that just wants to stay inside, not go to work, read books and protect myself.

Grief is a funny thing. My dad died on June 22, 2018, and ever since then, I feel the loss everyday. I took off that initial week from work, but then I went straight back to work, back to meetings. My false pride/ego doesn't want to be vulnerable, but in the past few months, I've literally sobbed at meetings.

I guess I'm just looking for experience, strength, and hope on this situation. I don't want to complain - I'm just sharing.

My experience, strength, and hope is this: Life is tough right now, but I'm still sober, don't have much of a desire to drink, and, thankfully, I have a HP.

I've told my friends lately: Sometimes I think there HAS to be a God. Otherwise, suffering makes no sense.

Again, thanks for this forum. Hope everyone has a good, sober day.

-Nick

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PaigeB
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Re: Grieving loss of my dad

Post by PaigeB »

Hi Nick. Sad for your loss. I lost my dad back in 2008. All I can tell you is that grief comes in waves. It is another thing that we never graduate from and must learn to live with on a daily basis. I have found that Acceptance of my grief is helpful... as long as I don't wallow in it. As long as I don't use it as an excuse for whatever. I just have to realize that Grief is part of my life now.

THat being said, the AA program has us practicing spiritual matters every day. I like to think of my dad no longer in pain, "dancing with the pretty ladies" on new legs, just like he wanted to be. He is just fine. In fact he is great. I am sad because I miss him and I wish I could sit with him one more time. I know, it is a bit selfish to wish him back to this world of pain & suffering... He can see that I am doing good in AA and I KNOW he would be proud of me. When I get down to the real fact of the situation, I can honestly say that my dad was real proud of me no matter what I did. He would want me to be ok, but that does not make me ok all day everyday... I have to work at it. I have to surrender it. I have to change my mind to someone I can help.
Cling to the thought that, in God's hands, the dark past is the greatest possession you have - the key to life and happiness for others. With it you can avert death and misery for them. page 124 BB

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Spirit Flower
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Re: Grieving loss of my dad

Post by Spirit Flower »

I needed therapy after each of my parents died.
...a score card reading zero...

anand
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Re: Grieving loss of my dad

Post by anand »

Thank you for this share! I literally was just thinking to my self the only reason i put up with my Father is that i might miss him one day. And that fear compromises my well being more often than i care for it to. Definitely curious to.know what your relationship with him was like, before and the types of feelings now. It is great to see youve still got your wits about you recovery-wise. Did you have to go through another 4th step over this or have the usual maintenance activities been sufficient/working?
Hi, I'm Anand and I'm an Alcoholic. And have been since 7/14/2003. Thank you for being here.

Jaywalker Steve
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Re: Grieving loss of my dad

Post by Jaywalker Steve »

My heart hurts for you. You and your family are in our prayers.

We lost Mom in 1996 when I was 9 years sober. It was/is loss on a level I can't describe and it was only through the love of God, family and AA that allowed me to heal and move on still sober and useful. The important thing for me was to give time time, trust and lean on the people around me and not forget that there are people in this world that really needed help - even from a brokenhearted young man in recovery. I am not the same and will never be, but can honestly tell you I've healed and still have the ability to carry this message one day at a time.

Steve
Every group has men and women who put too much thought and effort into their daily sobriety and not enough of themselves into their daily living. - Ed B., Akron, OH

tomsteve
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Re: Grieving loss of my dad

Post by tomsteve »

glad ya posted,nick. i was my mothers caregiver and she lived with me for the last 11 years of her life. thankfully she was able to see me sober the last 8 years of her life and i was able to truly be there for her.
the grieving was extremely rough.never once had a thought of drinking, but all them feelings and emoitions- =surprised .
one thing i did that wasnt good was try and stuff the feelings and emotions. i was doing what i could to get out of myself and help others. fortunately, there was a woman in AA who had been in the exact same situation( and also happened to do respite for the hospice i had in place for mom) that helped me tremendously.
"tom, why was i allowed to grieve and feel but you cant?what makes you so much better and powerful than me? how come you cant take time for yourself but i can??"
i broke down crying when she said that- FINALLY stopped trying to avoid and stuff it. she helped me understand theres stages to grieving and it can be a serious roller coaster- especially the first year. she helped me accept its ok to take time to myself- just as my Gods' Son did.
she wasnt kidding! that first year was a whirlwind. but i had to allow it to happen. i had to allow myself to feel sad, lonely,angry,and all them other feelings. i had to allow emotions to show. without that i would have delayed the grieving process.
grieving isnt something we go through and are done. it can come at any time. over time it got easier for me to spot when i was grieving and accept it. its ok to have feelings and emotions.
you may want to look into a grief support group. you can go to AA for help with alcoholism so why not get help with the grieving?

philly25
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Re: Grieving loss of my dad

Post by philly25 »

Thanks for all the messages and support. I had a tough relationship with my dad - he was an addict and could be pretty abusive. The last two years of his life were tough; kind of became a role reversal where I was the parent and he was the child. I know that's pretty normal, but he died at 55 because of his addictions.

I'm getting a lot of support from AA friends, and I'm seeing a therapist to talk this stuff out. I guess the biggest thing is I'm allowing myself to be a mess sometimes, which I have been haha. Like many alkies, I'm very hard on myself. Someone told me at a meeting recently, "There's nothing like perfect adherence to these principles." I needed to hear that.

I have a trust that I'll be okay. I posted about this really just to share, because it's good to share.

I think about this a lot: Man, I qualify for almost every 12-step program that exists. Some of the things I deal with require Al-Anon, ACOA, etc. I've done therapy, trauma work, and all of that, and that's all well and good, but I think the important thing is to ... take it slow! Trust the process. Trust God.

I'm kind of rambling. I like to think of sobriety/life as a metaphor for sailing on a large ship sometimes - there are huge storms at times, and I just have to ride the waves and not drown. But there are other times - and I've had them since I've been sober - when the sea is calm, the sun is out, and I feel at peace.

Anyway, thanks you guys! Love you and love AA.

-Nick

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Blue Moon
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Re: Grieving loss of my dad

Post by Blue Moon »

Grief comes in waves, and sometimes hits like a tsunami. My parents are both still alive, but when they pass I wouldn’t be surprised if I go through a similar journey. Doing the Steps I briefly revisited a childhood that was not ideal, but quickly realised that I can’t really look to “my part” in most of that. I was powerless. Sure, it helped a bit to realise they were perhaps spiritually sick. What I’m more interested about today is learning how to react differently and function OK as an adult. I can’t go on acting as though still powerless.

As it was my parents who were responsible for keeping me safe, I still sometimes question within myself why they didn’t. But then I remember my own warped thinking in my drinking days, when I thought everyone around me was safe. That’s why drunks drive cars.
Ian S
AKA Blue Moon

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