Author: Ann Schiebert
Susan will get depressed! Susan’s family will get depressed! Everyone but dad will be depressed because dad has been enabled to keep drinking and remain ignorant that his disease is at the root of family upheaval, RDS, and chronic disappointment. Dad has been enabled to keep harming his mental and physical health so his family doesn’t have to change their generational RDS. Is this just unbelievable? The disease of alcoholism is running this family! The family’s psychological reality distortion field is firmly in place!
Susan is depressed because she has been ostracized. She is walking toward a Reality Clarity System and, like anyone else who takes the journey out of the RDS of one’s family, Susan is facing a very challenging road. She will also feel guilty. Should she have taken such a stand? She hurt her family! Did she really need to set a boundary or could she have just suffered through each holiday and visit? While she has a sponsor at Alanon (someone who she has taken time to know and with whom she has conversational IFP+ (Intimacy Filled Pastiming), Susan feels sad that her family wouldn’t join with her in addressing her father’s addiction. If she regularly communicated with her family, it will feel like she has a large hole in her life. Who to turn to? How to take care of one’s self in the depression/guilt stage of the road to Reality Clarity System?
Getting counseling is a must. A therapist who is knowledgeable in addiction and codependency will know how to support Susan and help her pass through the depression stage. Attending as many Alanon/Coda (Codependents Anonymous) meetings and participating in them will help. An exercise program will help. Making a recovery family (made up of favorites in Alanon/Coda) will help. Socializing with those in the recovery family will keep Susan’s mind off the family relationship changes she is passing through.
What will Susan’s family do? One of two things: 1. Some members of her family, if they are resilient, might consider if Susan has a point. They might investigate alcoholism and learn about the disease. 2. The family will stay gathered around dad and become depressed that Susan has changed because she doesn’t understand them due to her membership in a, “cult,” (Alanon/Coda etc.), or due to any other reason they can think of. The family will become Susan’s, “VICTIMS!” This is a great reason to become depressed and feel guilty. Susan’s, “disloyalty,” her absence, her lack of understanding, her, “desertion,” will be a foundation for family depression and guilt. Mom will feel guilty that if she had been a better mother, Susan would have been loyal to her family, “no matter what!” And as long as the family keeps their story going, they will experience depression/guilt.
How will the family try to bring Susan back into it?
Can Susan resist?