The alcoholic is usually the identified patient in the family system but the entire family needs to change for all to recover. There is a great article on About.com providing 10 key actions a family member can do immediately to take care of themselves. The family system is like a dance, if one person starts dancing to a different beat, change inevitably occurs for all family members.
10 Things to Stop Doing if You Love an Alcoholic
Judy in our Store recommends the following literature for family members.
There are the people who took a trip through the doors of Alanon only to find they were an addict themselves! Anyway, we are out there and here is some good literature that doesn’t always get the attention it deserves.
Common characteristics include (see article for complete list):
Adult children guess what normal behaior is.
Adult children judge themselves without mercy.
Adult children have difficulty with intimate relationships.
The impact of alcoholism and addiction creates a ripple effect throughout an entire family. The good news is Recovery can do the same. If you are experiencing some of this in your life there are 12 Step programs to help.
Alanon, www.alanon.org; Adult Children of Alcoholics, www.adultchildren.org; Codependents Anonymous, www.coda.org