Several years ago we had been planning a vacation for the family. We were going to go stay in California on the beach for about ten days. The night before we were supposed to leave, my spouse decided to not come home. She pulled an all night party binge with some people down the street. What was I supposed to do, tell the children we were not going on vacation because moms nowhere to be found?
I wrestled with deciding if we should go on vacation or not. So, the decision was made after talking to a close friend in the Alcoholics Anonymous program. We went on vacation without her. Boy was she ever fuming when I told her we had left town and were on our way to California.
She knew we had been planning on leaving early in the morning. It was quite empowering to stand up for the family and say we will not tolerate your irresponsible behavior. Have fun while we are gone. This wasn’t the first time the alcoholic stayed out all night.
Why should the entire family suffer due to one person’s choice to not come home and be ready to go on vacation? In short, I was saying go ahead and live your alcoholic life and party for the next ten days because we are going to enjoy our vacation on the beach without you. Now you will suffer the consequences of your decision to not come home.
This may seem as though it was a mean thing to do, but vacation is supposed to be a time for having fun not being mad because the alcoholic had to party the night before you were supposed to leave. Besides, I had no idea where she was and had no interest in trying to find her. My days of obsessing over an alcoholic ended months prior.
The night before I had tried repeatedly to contact her and she never once returned a call or called to inform me of anything that had happened.
The bags were packed, the money was in the wallet, the kids where anxious to go to the beach and the alcoholic spouse was nowhere to be found.
It’s really tough living with an alcoholic because they do things that affect the entire family. In this case, we had a great time without her and she had a marvelous time getting drunk with her friends while we were in California.
It was difficult to explain to the children, but they somehow understood what I was saying. Once we got there we had a blast.
This is what life is like when you have an alcoholic in the family. Their behavior is always so unpredictable that they will inevitably mess up some major plan that has been in place for months.
It’s important to learn how to enjoy life with or without the person who suffers from a drinking problem.
Why should the three kids have to suffer and miss a vacation that we had planned for an entire year because of one person actions?
Looking back on the whole ordeal, I could have never done it without the support of my friends in the AA and AL-anon program. Every day while we were away, I spent time talking to my two sponsors on the phone. I was reassured by many good friends that I had done the best thing for the family.