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Sometimes Being A Mom Is Tough No Matter What

I’m a mom. That lady with the five kids, two of whom are probably screaming, with the other three trying really hard to pretend they aren’t with me? That’s me. I’m most likely trying really hard not to yell too loudly, because we are out in public, and I don’t want to look like that mom.

What people don’t see is that I’m a recovering alcoholic, and that my kids have been through hell and back with me.

They don’t know that I question every meltdown my children have, because I think maybe it’s because of the things I did. They don’t know how really hard I try not to cry when my eight year old wont go stay the night somewhere, because even after almost three years, she’s afraid that I wont be home when she gets back.

People don’t know that I talk my ten year old through panic attacks because she gets so anxious, or that my fourteen year old thinks I’m crazy to worry that she knows kids who are doing drugs or drinking. That my four year old just wants to be loved and feel super special all that time, and that my littlest monster, my only real recovery baby, has all sorts of sensory issues that bring me to tears all the time. They don’t know that my marriage is still not anywhere near where it used to be and that most nights I feel like I live with a stranger. Does this all make me a bad mom?

Can you chalk up every quirk my kids have and blame it on the fact that I’m a recovering alcoholic?

That there really was a time I was a really horrible mom? You could, but you could also say I have normal kids who are acting out for a number of reasons. I hold that guilt close to my heart and I do worry. I do take in every meltdown; I do sit at night and just cry because I worry that it’s all my fault. What I don’t do is let them know this. I try to tell them to take the good from the bad that while mom is a recovering alcoholic, that doesn’t stop the world. I teach them that everyone has something.

Our something isn’t a secret and there’s no shame in it. They did nothing to cause it, and that it does make us stronger as a family. I try to teach them not to judge others, to appreciate the little things, to try and understand that sometimes it’s ok to be angry as long as you say it the right way, and that not anyone of us are perfect. That’s what I wish people knew or saw when they hide from my family of seven walking down the isle of the grocery store; crazy toddlers and no nonsense teenagers.We are a family. We are quirky, we have problems, but we are good people.

original photo credit: mugley via photopin cc

This post originally appeared on Sober Mommies in August 2014.

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10 Comments on “Sometimes Being A Mom Is Tough No Matter What

  1. Thank you so much for your honesty. Reading this has helped me today. Thank you.

    • thank you for reading it . its so hard being a mom let alone a mom in sobriety sometimes i think i judge myself more then others , and when my kids do act out i really wonder is this why is it because they saw me in active addiction even though in reality im pretty sure most of what they do is normal . 🙂

    • Im considering rehab because I know im an alcoholic. I just read this and am crying. My 8 year old daughter wont go anywhere either and I know in my heart that its her fear that I wont be home when she comes back. I feel like a horrible person because I’ve chosen myself over my kids. I dont know what to do. I cant believe im even writing this.

  2. Absolutely beautifully put Ginny! A lot of times I think people are very quick to judge because its easier than trying to understand. I get the same looks from people with my four year old and lots of times it makes me bawl, but I always remind myself that I was given this beautiful child for a reason. Perhaps the people who stare at us and are quick to judge, are afraid of change themselves. Maybe they aren’t ready to face their mistakes and they take it out on others rather than own it themselves! Love you to the moon and back Momma

    • thank you lindsay , sometimes i think we judge ourselves harder then others do . i know when i walk in some place with all my girls i get lots of looks lol some are like omg and others look irritated . ive had people stop me and say i dont know how you do it and it makes me smile because niether do i haha but we make the best of everything even when i leave with one toddler screaming and the other running way ahead of me .but i do look whenever one of them melts down or cries i worry i worry its becasue of me but you know most times its not there are days they say things or throw when i was drinking out there and i have to remind myself they were there they hurt to and they have to heal .

      • Im considering rehab because I know im an alcoholic. I just read this and am crying. My 8 year old daughter wont go anywhere either and I know in my heart that its her fear that I wont be home when she comes back. I feel like a horrible person because I’ve chosen myself over my kids. I dont know what to do. I cant believe im even writing this.

        • I have sooo many skeletons in the closet because of alcohol. My husband woke me up last night in my car passed out with It running after two hours. Thats not the first time. I know its time. Ive almost died way too many times. How do you get yourself to finally get help. I will probably get over it tomorrow like I always do. However I know that every time I drink its getting worse and I never remember anything. Even when im not drinking. I am starting to not know whats real and happened and what isnt. I feel like im losing my mind. Sorry for these posts but this is the only time I’ve ever admitted anything because your post hit home.

          • dont ever be sorry for posting please dont thats what this was ment for so no one felt alone , we all have skeletons , your not alone with that by any means , my husband found me passed out many times , or got calls from my kids that i had passed out . i could go go on and on with all the bad things i did when i was drinking and i will if you ever want to chat ill give you my number talk to you about what i did and how i did it . getting sober , it took me 4 years to “want” to get sober but i did not for my kids not for my husband but for me and thats the most important part are at least it was for me . i did a detox , outpatient , early recovery group , i did a 12 step program that got harder with my kids but i truely believe in the 12 steps on alot of levels. i too should have died a couple times i came really close to not coming home . you can message me anytime your not alone in any of this

        • your not a horrible person i promise . rehab is extremly helpful i recommend it personally. your not choosing yourself you have an addiction a disease something more powerful then you . i wish i could reach across my computer and hug you . good for you for writing this and reaching out you can get sober , its a journey and not an easy one but you can do it i promise . i never thought i could or id live to do it but im here and im sober living my life with my girls and im happy its not easy but its possible i promise.

  3. I love everyones honesty, I am a recovering alcoholic who is in early recovery and I’m scared to death to relapse because my daughter is just a baby and I don’t want her to ever see the ugliness that is me drunk. I love your inspiration and that we are not alone, I know there are a lot of us out there.

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