An Open Letter to the Alcoholic That I Love

I have been trying to find the words to write this post for a long time now.  This topic is something that is very emotional for me to talk about, and something that was put on my heart more over the past few months.

I am related to an alcoholic.  And to be honest, I have found this to be more difficult to deal with as time has gone by.

I have noticed over the past few months that things have gotten worse for them.  It has really opened my eyes to how serious this is, and quite honestly, how big of a problem it is for a lot of people in the world.

Because of this I started thinking back to when I was younger and back to a time when I did not really understand what was going on, and I can even see where things were wrong back then.  The broken promises. The selfishness.  The making sure you don’t plan something after a certain time because you know that by the time 5:00 (sometimes earlier) rolls around it is time to get ready to deal with the drunkenness.

I am worn out and tired of dealing with it.  Am I worried about them?  Yes, of course!  Do I want them to get help?  Absolutely!  But one thing I have learned (and still learning everyday) is that I cannot fix them and change the situation, they have to be the one to do that for themselves.  It seriously sucks sitting back and watching them kill themselves with the alcohol on a nightly basis, but that is all I CAN do right now besides pray for them.

Speaking of praying, I have also learned that instead of praying that God cures them or heals them from this disease, I need to pray that God does anything and everything to make them hit rock bottom.  I do not know what rock bottom is, but God does.

I am thankful that I live so far away and that I do not have to see this on a daily basis anymore.  If I was I would still be consumed by it and it would be harder to live my own life.  But the good thing is, I AM living my own life.  I live in a great city, I have great friends, and I have a great job that I love going to everyday, so because of those things I am able to not be consumed by it.  Do I still have my rough moments?  Yes, of course.  I am human after all.

So to this family member that struggles and deals with this disease on a daily basis, please know that I love you and that I will always fight for you and with you, but I am also backing away so that way you can hopefully realize that you are strong enough to fight this by yourself.

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Letting Go and Moving On Part II

Please read Letting Go and Moving On Part I before you read this post if you have not done so already.

People always say that hindsight is 20/20, and sometimes you have to separate yourself from a situation to look at it with clear eyes and a clear mind, but then there are times that you think you can see clearly when you are right smack dab in the middle of a situation. This is what happened to me, and boy was I wrong and looking back I could not believe that I bought so much with what my friend Francis was saying.

As I mentioned in the previous post, it seemed like her attitude changed practically overnight. While the old Francis would be outgoing and wanting to talk to anyone and everyone, she became withdrawn and refused to get out of bed for days. Now, when this happened I was not living in LA anymore, but I did talk to her on the phone on a regular basis. When I would talk to her on the phone she was very emotional most of the time. I will say though that during this time, one of her dogs passed away unexpectedly, which I will agree would make anyone emotional with a loss like that, and I did feel for her. But after that, things just continued to get even stranger.

Shortly after her dogs untimely passing, I got a phone call from her and she was absolutely hysterical. It took me a while to figure out what was going on. When I was finally able to understand her, she had said that her apartment had gotten broken into and her laptop was gone. I could understand why she was freaking out and scared, I would be to if it had happened to me. However, my sympathy for her only lasted for a short time after that. A few weeks later, I found out that her new laptop that she had bought was once again “stolen”. This is when I started to get suspicious. Now I knew she didn’t live in the best area and that yes, break-ins happened frequently, but with her recent change of attitude and the recent events that happened, something was telling me that she might be on drugs, which she has admitted to being on drugs at one point in her life.

I have personally been around and seen people who I am very close to that have dealt with addictions so this is not something I am new to. I remember asking her if she was okay because she seemed very weird and off to me and she claimed she was just depressed and that she would be fine, and I believed her. That’s the thing though with people who have drug and alcohol problems, they will do anything and everything to convince their family and friends that they are okay, when they are clearly not.

After the whole laptop incident I started to keep my distance from her. It wasn’t like I was in town to see her all the time anyways. As more time passed she became more and more possessive and stalker like. I would come into town for a couple of weeks to visit and I could not go a day without hearing from her either via Facebook, texting, or calling me on a daily basis asking me to hang out with her. What she did not seem to understand every single time was that I was continuously busy doing my own thing and I had prior commitments that I had already made with other friends. She would either make it seem like I needed to a) ditch my friends and hang out with her every single day, or, b) have her tag along everywhere I went. As you can imagine, this became very annoying. I finally talked to her about it and her explanation was that she really admired me and wanted to hang out with me all the time because of that. Do not get me wrong, I appreciate the fact that she looked up to me from the CP standpoint, but the admiration was honestly starting to look and turn into some sort of obsession thing, because it only got worse from there.

As time went on, she continued to pressure me for attention and would constantly like and comment on almost everything on Facebook that I would post. Once again, it got to be too much so I would talk to her about it, she would get upset and feel bad, back off for a month or so, then she would go back into her old habits again. This is when I decided that I needed a break from her for good, (or so I thought), and I decided to block her from everything social media wise as well as the phone.

It was also about that time that I started feeling like something was once again off with her, and it was not like the first time with the laptops. I had this gut feeling that it was a bit more personal and had to deal with me on a more intimate level. With the way she was acting towards me, as well as the vibes that I was getting from her I started to believe that she may have developed feelings for me on a more intimate level than just friends.

Before I go on with this part of the story, let me tell you first that I am a HUGE supporter of the LGBTQ community and will defend anyone who is getting shafted because of their sexual orientation. However, that does not mean that I am by any means a lesbian. I am straight. Always have been. Always will be.

Fast-forward about four or five months later, and by this time I am living in LA full-time once again. I was minding my own business one day, going about my everyday life, when my friend tells me that she got an email from Francis and she wanted to talk. We decided that we would talk to her together and work out our differences and move on. A few days later, we headed over to talk to her at her place and we ended up talking about everything and make up so to speak. I was thinking, “Okay, maybe God wants to restore the friendship and maybe, just maybe she has changed and isn’t as weird anymore.” I was willing to give it one more shot. But honestly, as time went on and as I was hanging out with her again, I could not get the nagging voice in my head and gut feeling to go away that she had stronger feelings for me than just friendship. It honestly started to eat away at me. I would get physically sick. I am not one for confrontation usually and ESPECIALLY on a topic like this one.

After many, and yes I mean many, days and nights of praying and talking to family and friends about it, I finally decided to bite the bullet and just ask her straight out if there was any deeper feelings there, and believe me I dreaded having this conversation like the plague. Once again, I was physically sick. I could not sleep at all the night before I had dinner with her to talk to her about this because my brain was going a million miles a minute.

When I got there, she knew something was up and that I was nervous about something, and I was not quiet about being nervous either. I had told her that the question that I had to ask was probably the hardest question I had to ask anyone because 1) I did not want to come off as a hateful bitch in the slightest and make gays and lesbians think I do not care for them because of their sexual orientation, and 2.) I have never had to have a conversation with someone like this before so I was uncomfortable and did not know what I was getting myself into. When I finally blurted it out, I felt this huge weight being lifted off of my shoulders, but at the same time, a look of shock was replaced onto Francis’ face. I also noticed she would not look me in the eye and would just focus her eyes more on the ground. She instantly started to cry and deny anything of a sort. She has admitted that there have been other people in her life that have thought the same thing, which honestly to me raised some red flags with whether or not she was being honest with me or not. I also told her that if she was that it was okay to tell me and that I would support her in that, but I would not share the same feelings that she had.

At the end of that conversation, I was left feeling a mixture of emotions. I felt very drained from the conversation and it also did not help that I was running on no sleep and was basically living off Starbucks. Also looking back, since hindsight is 20/20, I felt very confused. I was not sure how to take the conversation as a whole, and maybe that is because of the red flags that were raised. I only got it more confirmed for me the next day when she called me to see if we were okay and she had told me that she was up all night crying because of the topic I had brought up. Personally, I thought that was strange considering she swore up and down that she did not feel that way.

Because of this conversation that we had about six months ago, as well as her getting a little bit more obsessive in the past few months with doing the Facebook liking and commenting, as well as text and call me constantly wanting to hang out (after I had told her that I was super busy since I had come back home from the holidays, which fell onto deaf ears), I finally decided it was time to cut her out of my life for good. I was done trying to explain myself.

I fully believe that friendships are put in our lives for a reason and I believe that she was put in my life to really help me see how a lot of people with disabilities as well as other people who are not disabled label and stereotype themselves or others basically saying that they do not and cannot get the independence to do everyday life things independently. Because of this situation, a fire was lit under my ass to start the Stereotypically Able movement, so for that Francis, I thank you. And goodbye.