Thursday, November 15, 2007

Minding my own Business

A big part of Al-anon is learning to turn the focus off of the alcoholic/addict in your life and onto yourself. While this seems like a simple concept to those of us on this side of the fence it is not nearly that simple.

When you are close to/living with and addict your thoughts and actions are consumed with them. You are always worrying about where they are and what they are doing. You make every decision in your life based on them. You stop doing things you like because you feel like you need to be there to "babysit" them. Every day, every hour, every second becomes about them and their addiction.

This becomes so much of a way of life that you completely forget to worry about yourself. To focus on your needs and your feelings. Instead you begin to take a back seat in every aspect of your life. At work the focus becomes on others. In your friendships you become wrapped up in their problems and their lives.

It begins to become about drama and living in that moment. Anyone who knows me will know that I am a very high stress, high drama person. I like to tell my stories as if every word might be the one that changes someones life. This is not a bad characteristic as long as I keep it about myself. After all, there has to be a drama queen in every bunch doesn't there??

It is when I get wrapped up in other people's lives and drama that I get into trouble. Take for instance a friend of mine....

Let me digress here for a moment, it has been brought to my attention that some of you think I only have one friend and when I say a friend of mine I am referring to her. Let me assure you that as isolated as I have made myself in these past years I do have more than one friend and sometimes I talk about them too... K??

Anyhow, this friend is having trouble with her significant other. The problems had been going on for a little while and she had not told me because she knew I would push her for details and they were details she didn't have the answers to and didn't really want to discuss.

At first this hurt my feelings but then I realized that she was right. I would have wanted to know every little bit and then I would have wanted to stick myself right into the middle of this little drama session.

Even now, after two and a half months in the program I find my mind wandering and trying to get lost in her situation. I know that it is not my place and I just need to listen to her, not get caught up in her story but it's hard for me. I know her significant other. I have this person's e-mail address and the thought has crossed my mind to e-mail them.

Then I have to stop. I need to keep reminding myself that this is not my problem; it is hers. It is my job to be her friend and to listen to what is going on but it is not my job to try to step in and fix things unless she asks me to.

Did I mention to you this is hard for me?? However, slowly, one meeting at a time I am trying to work on it. So I guess what I'm saying is if you know me IRL and you have an issue that you come to me about and I don't react the way I have in the past please don't take offense to it.

I'm trying really hard to take the focus off of others and put it on me, so that I can figure out who I am and what I want out of my life. It is not healthy for me to be so focused on everyone else's life and ignore my own.

Does that make any sense to anyone?


stella said...

I'm loving watching you grow!

Isabel said...

Yeah, this makes sense to me. I wish you luck.

(I have a friend who is going through a divorce and she finally just quit talking to me. I think she's just sick of me being involved. I understand.)

Kbreints said...

Lots of sense. That is what normal *snort* people do ;)

Glad to see that you are getting so much out of the program ans the meetings.