Various Lies

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

So very fat and very rude...

Alcoholism runs deep in my family's veins. Alcoholism and it's concomitant risks of suicide. Straight down through the Scots blood on one side of our family tree is a thick vein of violent alcoholic depression and suicide.

I have faced those demons myself; both as a child with the terrifying spectre of a drunk and violent person, much larger and much, much stronger than I lashing out wildly with no regard for who or what gets hurt. Until later, when it's far too late to heal the wounds sustained. The constant fear of doing, saying, or even looking wrong, always wondering how bad it might be this time.

And, because like-breeds-like I have faced it from the working end of bottles of whiskey, cheap and dirty scotch flooding my belly and my brain with fire. And loving it. Feeling such rage and hatred for everything that all you can do is lash out.

And I've stood on that precipice, literally and figuratively, wondering if it wouldn't just be easier to let go and drop. Knowing that no matter how painful the landing, it will at least be a brief pain compared to the constant pain and torture of the present.

A long time has passed, but memories like that don't fade. And I still lie awake at night thinking and wondering and regretting. But now, as an adult, I can recognise symptoms and signs and heed warnings I was too naive, or too fucked up to notice in the past. There is no "slippery slope". That's a fucking scapegoat fallacy. There is just a step. One too many without care and it's too fucking late to back to where you were.

So, recognising those steps those feelings and those emotions, I made a resolution. Stop, before you look down and see a familiar, well trod path beneath your feet. Stop before it's too late; because it will be one day, far to late. And you don't have nine lives anymore old son. You've burned too many bridges, too many times to keep thinking that it's "gonna be OK".

I've been trying to keep it on the quiet, like. Publicity doesn't help. I assumed everyone would figure it out soon enough anyway; I mean, all I hear from acquaintances and drinking partners is "are you here every night?", or "Shall I see you next week? Oh, of course, you're always here."

I thought it should be pretty obvious why I'm not around as much. Enjoying a weekend with my girlfriend, but avoiding certain places, and people, like the plague during the week. Leaving early from events, canceling dinner plans, or returning concert tickets. I didn't expect much in response, but I certainly didn't expect the levels of disrespect I'm receiving from some quarters.

In the last couple of weeks I have been called, even to my face, a loser, a drunk, a failure, a quitter and been told in no uncertain terms by a couple of folks that I can "fuck off then!". And I have. That's the point.

Curiously, other people have been more supportive. "Good for you,", or "No problem. Let me know if you fancy a quiet beer at the weekend", or even "How about a coffee then".

To those then, Thank you. To the rest, Thank you too, for helping me open my eyes. I suggest you try the same thing one day.


Cath@VWXYNot? said...

Well, I guess it's good to know who your friends are.

Screw 'em.

And good luck. It's in my family too, on both sides, although not quite as close, and not violent (AFAIK).

The Grand Inquisitor said...

had the drunk violent paterfamilias as well, so i can sense the issue. i suppose quite weekends with your girlfriend are better than rowdy ones with someone else's

tideliar said...

@Cath: My thoughts exactly! It's...inspirational?

@GI: ...or indeed someone else's wife...

microbiologist xx said...

The twisted and fucked up family tree culminating in my birth is pretty similar. One side is alcoholism and murder (instead of suicide) and the other is keep everything hush hush, but enable and feed the demons while your at it. I spent a good portion of my life running from those traits, fearing I would turn out exactly the same. That doesn't work either.

I am sorry those people are such idiots, but they probably can't see beyond their own problems. Who needs "friends" like that anyway? I am glad that you are finding support, and I wish you the best of luck. I know it's hard.

tideliar said...

@MXX: Thanks. I've realised, as I've grown up and traveled the world, that most folks have a tale to tell about their family. but you have to rise above making that an excuse for your behaviour. That's the hard part.

Thomas Joseph said...

As someone who has had the demons ride his own back for quite some time before eventually seeking help, I hear you.

As others have said, this is the time when you'll sort the wheat from the chaff. You will surely find out who your friends are ... and the others, when they see you take control, they will hate you for it. It does however, make that separation all the easier for awhile. Fortunately that's the time you need it most.

Best of luck!

Genomic Repairman said...

Hey man, it runs in part of my family too. Hell I had a great aunt drive a car through the front window of a doughnut shop in the morning after an all night bender. Another aunt is currently charged with DUI and awaiting trial. I kind of went through what you did not too long ago. Hey if they really your friends, they would accept your lifestyle change and interact with you in other ways like going to get lunch instead of rolling off to happy hour. Just realize your true friends and keep them close. The rest can go choke on a dick.

Cynnie said...

yeah, it's in my family ..the drink and the suicide..
take care mister

Ambivalent Academic said...

Good for you man. I am extraordinarily blessed not to have these problems in my genes, but I have been involved with a person who was facing this and couldn't or wouldn't step back, evaluate like you're doing and make some commitments to not letting this take over everything. I recognize what a difficult (and painful in the case of finding out that some of your "friends" are actually not) thing this must be to do and I just want to say - good on you. Take care.