#3142
twilight16
Participant

Megan,

Hope you are feeling better, if not a little just knowing that you have found the right place to start your recovery as a child of a cg. As you wrote, it truly is incredible that you are normal after going through what you did with your mother’s gambling and I share these same feelings.
You are already in a good position as you have not been helping/enabling your mother financially for the past year and a half. So in the back of her mind she already knows that you will not help again, but now with the risk of her losing everything I believe she will ask again and this time with tears and utter panic. Just know that this is also part of the addiction’s manipulation for enablement; the stakes are higher and if she is about to lose a car or apartment the performance will be downright brutal to watch. Its intention is to make you feel like you are the bad daughter for not giving in but you must hold your ground and continue not to enable.
The strategy of separating the addiction from the person has other parts. It had to separate my father’s financial problems from him. I did not get involved with his debts or hardships. I did not ask and I found when I didn’t ask I felt better. I did not need to know that he did not have car insurance anymore because this would be only stressful to me, because if he didn’t care about it then I shouldn’t either. If your mother starts unloading her financial problems just tell her that you are confident that she will figure it out, saying how smart she is. I found when I redirected my father’s requests for money to how he could do it he just stopped talking about his problems.
Also I learned from cg’s at the site that they are quite smart always finding a way to get what they need, they have friends and often they have the money somewhere. Don’t underestimate what your mother can do for herself. Again don’t get pulled in by the addiction as it will try everything to get you to crumb to its demands. If you mom pleads with you, just redirect her to how she can help herself. This really works.
When I first came here, I couldn’t stand my father. I even think I once wrote that I hated him for what his gambling did not only to his life but mine and my family. At the time when I came here he was in his mid-sixties on the verge of losing everything, when he should have been financial set for his retirement. When he lost it all, even after years of pleading with him, his addiction tried its best to keep me under its wing as it did for so many years. I had to break free somehow or I was going to suffer a major breakdown. I learned about this addiction and I never looked back with my stance of never enabling, as this is what I did for thirty plus years and I was never really happy. As I gained the tools I learned here I was able to have a somewhat relationship with my father, I was able to release any hard feelings as I did not want them anymore and I was able to love him again. Still it is not how I would have liked it to be but it is much better than I could have imagined considering the situation. My father never acknowledged his addiction so I can’t say that he recovered, but I did and that is really what is important.
It is good that you are getting your feelings out on paper; writing is so therapeutic and I do it often. It is amazing what seems to pour out of your fingers only to enlighten yourself. See this as your journey to a better life and one where your mother may find for herself.

Take care,
Twilight