A version of this ran in The Drinking Diaries last year (it’s been rewritten for you, Pranksters) and today they’re running a follow-up interview with me today so I thought I’d be brave and post it on my real blog today.
I am an adult child of two alcoholics, and although there are nifty acronyms used to refer to us, I prefer my real name: Becky (unless you want to call me Princess of Power). The Internet knows me as Aunt Becky and there’s probably a number of you scratching your head over my incongruently named site: “Mommy Wants Vodka.”
I’ve been mixed up plenty into articles about Diane Schuler, the lady who killed her kids, bashing me for being a Cocktail Mom. Hell, I even made it into the New York Times for that, even though I seldom blog about drinking.
In reading up on the other issues facing my cohorts, my fellow children of alcoholics–who also, presumably, have names–I think that in spite of the flack that I get, humor is the far healthier way to handle it. I’ve somehow, by the grace of God, perhaps, been able to avoid many of the nastier lasting effects of my childhood. I am not shy, I do not suffer from low self-esteem, and I don’t obsessively hoard china cat figurines or keep my toenail clippings in jars.
I do have anxiety and guilt and the emotional range of a toddler and I frequently blame myself for things that never had anything to do with me. I’m about as trusting with even those closest to me as an abused animal. There are probably three people on the planet who really know me. Maybe less.
But I’m trying to work through this because I know I deserve better than I got.
Every day; every single day that I wake up, I wonder if today will be the day that it hits. We adult children of alcoholics are four times more likely than the general population to develop issues with substance abuse. FOUR TIMES. For someone like me, who has not one, but two alcoholic parents, this number must be infinitesimally higher. So I wait.
It’s exhausting, this waiting for the other shoe to drop.
So I sit and I wait, and while I do this, I build a new life for myself: I’m a mother, a writer, a friend. A daughter. A sister. A niece and a cousin.
My name is Becky, and I am not an alcoholic.