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Stepson's an alcoholic and i feel responsible

Discussion in 'Helping an Addicted Loved One' started by True concern, May 20, 2018.

  1. True concern

    True concern Moderator

    As many of you know by now i am a recovering addict of basically everything i could get my hands on but the first addiction i consciously chose was drinking,i married young to a wonderful woman with 3 children.At the time i didn't see that my addiction's could affect anyone but myself and i tried as best i could in the situation i was in with my addiction to be a good role model,which i failed miserably at.I am happy to say none of my step kid's ever touched a hard narcotic infact they only ever smoked pot or drank as they got older,however the drinking for my oldest is out of control and i blame myself.I would drink a 750ml bottle of jack Daniel's a day followed by a 12 pack of beer and i did this for year's and eventually switched away from hard alcohol as it had a major role in my mood changing from happy to violent,i never hit my wife nor my kid's and actually my violence was directed at myself for reasons i did not understand at the time and after a life time of substance abuse the reason why i now know and have been sober since,but im not getting into that here.Anyways after 15 year's of living in the same home my wife put me out and i don't blame her for that but infact im so sorry i put her and my family through such insanity,at this time my oldest stepson stopped talking to me and we haven't spoke since,and i realize i am to blame for his resentment and i understand it,but through all this he learned how to be a functioning alcoholic and he is good at it and i am to blame for this as well as i held it together for the most part as long as i didn't mix substance's.He learned some thing's from me some good some bad.Even though I went from company to company i made good money when i worked because I learned several trades young and was a journeyman concrete finisher by the age of 19 and moved on to manage several different parts store's as i was raised with car's it just came naturally,i from day 1 in this family tried to support myself and my family with zero help from the biological father and in this my addiction's ate me alive and i again failed miserably.My stepson also married young and he has done what i was unable to,he not only supports his family with his 4 children and wife,he has already bought them a home and has provided them with everything i could not provide for my family,he is everything i wished i could have been as far as a provider goes and i admire him for that and i am so proud of him,however he did not just pick up my work ethic he now drinks the way i did when he was growing up and now i feel it is affecting my grandkids the way i affected his childhood and now that i see what I've done it kills me to think one day he will watch his kid's do the same.Considering the strain on our relationship and the separation of his mother and i he will not speak to me for any reason whatsoever and i worry his anger towards me is affecting his own relationship with his kid's and i fear like myself by the time he see's it,it maybe to late.I really hurt inside now knowing I'm to blame for alot of heartache that already exist and fear i am to blame for heartache that will come from his drinking if he does not stop.He has admitted to being an alcoholic and infact quit drinking for about 6 month's and when me and his mom separated he went back to drinking alot and as far as i know still does,i know I've let him down and i am so sorry for that and now sober I'm trying to re connect with my family but it's going very slow but he will not have anything to do with me period which is his choice but i don't know how to make him see that he is about to cause the same resentment he has for me from his own kid's (possibly)if he doesn't adress his drinking issue before it's too late.I don't know what I'm looking for here,maybe advice or something I'm not sure but i had to get this out and get some feed back because this is very saddening to me.Thank you all and God Bless
  2. Dominica

    Dominica Recovery Advocate @ Moving Beyond Codependency Community Listener

    @True concern hi there. i'm sorry you are hurting. i know you have such a big heart and i know you want to make amends.... maybe he does hold some resentment, but at some point, we really must surrender our children to their own journey. their own lessons. i know that's rough, as we want them to experience happiness and peace.

    but it's his journey. now, as an adult, he has the chance to "do the work" to heal emotionally, or not. of course, you can do your part by apologizing (even by letter if you can't speak with him)... and then let it go. pray for him. believe the best for him.... and accept your powerlessness over the situation now.

    as parents, we all have some regrets... some guilt. we all could have done better so-to-speak.... but we do better when we know better, right? your quitting drinking and drugging now... that will have an impact believe it or not. someday.

    someday they'll really see and appreciate your stopping and your decision to live a life inspiring and encouraging others! that's what you're doing!

    remember, it's progress we are after; not perfection.

    rebuilding burned bridges does take time. i commend you for trying.... please be gentle with yourself. you are a good man, and you are doing your best. it may take some time, so ease up on beating yourself up :)

    hope this helps.... thanks for reaching out. and try to enjoy the rest of your evening.
    True concern likes this.
  3. deanokat

    deanokat Community Organizer Community Listener

    @True concern... I understand how you feel, but Dominica is right: Your stepson is an adult now, and it's his journey. You can't control his behavior and you can't cure it. What you can do is let him know how you feel and be a good example for him going forward...which you are already doing.

    We're all human beings, and we all make mistakes. Sure, we'd all love to be the perfect parent (or step-parent), but nobody is perfect. The important thing is that you've changed. You made the decision to better your life, and that's huge. Try to be an inspiration for your stepson now. If he won't talk to you, sit down and write him a letter. You obviously have a way with words, my friend. Putting your thoughts down on paper, or in an email, would be a good place to start.

    What I don't think you should do is dwell on the past. As a father, I know there are a lot of things I wish I would've done differently. But the past is history, and we can't go back and change it. So the best thing we can do is to try and do our best every single day. We won't get everything right. But if we do our best, we can be at peace with ourselves.

    You've been through a lot, my friend. And I commend you for making the changes you have. For what it's worth, I grew up with an alcoholic father and had a lot of anger, hate, and resentment towards him. But I eventually let it all go and was able to forgive and love him again. I hope your stepson will do the same for you.

    I'm sending you lots of positive energy and hope today. Don't let the person you were mess with the person you have become. Just keep looking forward, because you're moving in the right direction now.
    True concern likes this.