Jennifer Meagher RN is the owner of Senior Life LLC, Advocates and Consultants. Meagher founded and oversees the Better Business Partners Serving Seniors. She is on the Alzheimer’s Advocacy Committee and has specialized in geriatrics since 1998. She is called on by doctors, attorneys, and financial advisors to care for their clients and their families. Contact Jennifer at www.SeniorLifeGCM.com.
MY MOTHER TRIED TO SELL ME
I was born a crack baby, I got taken away from my mother when the police found her passed out on the sidewalk. A neighbor told the police about me at home alone. I was only 3 months old. My Momma went to jail and my Grandma raised me. Once a month Grandma took me to visit my Momma in jail. My mother was in and out of jail. She couldn’t stay away from drugs. I hated going to see her. She would act like “Come here and see your Momma,” and I would try to hide behind my Grandma. She came to get me when I was 8 or 9. Grandma asked Momma to move in with her. I was so glad about that. I didn’t want to go anywhere with the stranger Momma. She got back into her old ways and wound back up in jail. Grandma got some calls after that asking about the little girl that was for sale. My Momma tried to sell me for drug money. That was it. Grandma was hopping mad. We saw a judge and I didn’t have to see my mother any more.
About 2 weeks ago I got a letter that said my mother died. I was listed as her next of kin. The authorities wanted me to take care of her body. Grandma’s gone now, so it’s only me. They buried her in some kind of state cemetery or other. I always wondered if I would know when my mother passed. I was sure I wouldn’t feel anything. But I do. I’m shouting mad and sad all at once. Why do I feel this way? She was never a true Momma to me. Never. Is something wrong with me? I can’t for the life of me explain this. It wakes me up some nights. I’m worried. My doctor said it’s normal. Is it?
Please don’t use my name
Dear Human Being with Feelings,
I am so sorry your mother had such a terrible disease as addiction. I am so happy your grandma gave you a home with love. And I’m sorry your momma wasn’t able to be a mother and that drugs meant more to her than anything at all. I rejoice that you have family that love you.
You are angry because you always wanted your mother to love you. Now she is gone. She can’t apologize or attempt to make anything right. She can never be a better mom, a real true Momma. And she never did anything good for you and you had to do something for her. And you’re sad too for the same reasons. Your feelings are normal even though your mother’s situation was crazy and abusive for you. You aren’t alone in your feelings. Your mother was a very sick woman. Your grandmother is a hero. Work hardest at remembering Grandma your life with her is much more important. You are a strong survivor. Well done. See today’s article for more.
COPING WITH PARENTS WHO ARE ADDICTS
1. Contact Al-anon and attend support groups.
2. Learn about addiction. There is so much to understand – more than I can list here.
3. Accept that all of us do the best we can with the skills and life we are dealt.
4. Recognize your own value in this world.
5. Recognize that parents are merely people with the functioning body parts to create a child.
6. Concentrate on the positives in your life and your achievements.
7. Define your life based on yourself and others who love you, NOT on the many regrets associated with your parent/s.
8. Follow “Tough Love” principals. Tell your parent/s to get help at a hospital or doctor’s office. Contact the authorities if you feel your parent is grossly unsafe.
9. In the end, lead your life and make decisions that promote your own wellness and that of your spouse and/or children.
10. Believe that you cannot “make” your parent stop being addicted or to make better choices. All you can do is react to each situation. Don’t enable your parent’s addiction by bailing him/her out of each problem. Read number 1 again. Then make the call.
Brain Workout Trivia
Which of these was NOT one of The Three Stooges (either original ones or replacements in later years)?
Brain Workout Trivia is the brainchild of John C Sproul
For more trivia visit www.funtrivia.com
The correct answer is C. The three original Stooges that many people remember were Moe Howard, Larry Fine and Curly Howard. In later years, seriously ill or dead Stooges were replaced by Shemp Howard, Joe Besser and Curly Joe DeRita. The answer to my quiz question (Shag) was never a Stooge.