“Addiction is like living in a fun house” (Carnes, 1993, p. 19). The misleading mirrors of the fun house make actions of sexual and alcoholic addictions appear normal (p. 19). However, sick behavior has consequences.
One day, I saw my mother crying. It broke my heart.
In 1967, I was 14 years old. I was with mom and dad in the family room of a local tavern. On the weekends, we would go out to eat. At times, we would go to a place called The Press Box.
During and after the meal, Dad would drink alcoholic beverages. Mom may have had one beer during dinner. My dad, however, had a difficult time stopping, and, even worse, he couldn’t stop flirting with women in the bar. My mother cried. I was angry.
One day, dad opened the refrigerator and told me that I could have a beer. He would rather I drink at home than get drunk at some party. I began drinking beer. After a while, I enjoyed the beer. I then had one a day.
There may not have been a connection; however, I found myself sneaking dad’s porn magazines, more and more. When mom and dad were not home, I would hide away in the house because I had one brother and five sisters. They didn’t need to see the pornography. Porn stoked compulsive masturbation. When I couldn’t have the other, drinking released the tension.
At 15, I joined a rock & roll band. After a gig, the host gave the band hard liquor. After we had loaded the equipment in our vehicles, we took a spin around town. The police picked us up.
At 4 a.m. in the morning, mom and dad came down to the station. When my mother saw how badly I looked, she had a look of dismay (shock) on her face. I had broken her heart.
I no longer was in the fun house. I saw my true distorted image in the unbroken mirror of mom’s virtue.
I’m angry. I do not want to hurt my love ones.
Carnes, P. J. (1993). A Gentle Path through the Twelve Steps; The Classic Guide for All People in the Process of Recovery. p. 19. Center City; Minnesota: Hazelden Educational Materials.