Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Life at Dysfunction Junction (1 in a series)

Attention class!!  This is Narc Coping Skills 101 - please get out your #2 pencils, etc.

At dinner, we were not allowed to have ANYTHING to drink.  No water, no milk, nothing.  We could, however, have a small glass of cabernet sauvignon if we wished.  (food, as we all know, is a great way to have power and control over your minions.)
Notice glasses of wine in front of children


If he ate dinner with us, it was because HE cooked (he wouldn't eat anything so pedestrian as MEATLOAF, for chrissakes) but that meant he had also been drinking wine for hours.  We would sit down to dinner (all 8 of us) and he would start pontificating about something, droning on-and-on-and-on about politics or something - Georgia sat to his right and more than once during these lectures she would sneak gulping drinks out of his glass of wine.  We thought it was hilarious - she was around 10 and would get a buzz.


For my high school graduation, they allowed me to GO to various parties (rather than have one of my own).  My mother went out and bought me a couple bottles of Boone's Farm wine *shudder* to take with me.  I puked HARD that night.


One of my sisters got me drunk for the first time - I was 15?  She took me to a party with her, I was drinking tequila sunrises *shudder*.  I puked HARD that night.  (One sister also got me stoned the first time.  One sister snorted lines of coke with me the first time.  It was the 70's.  Drugs were de rigueur at the time.  Have you SEEN Scarface??)


All they drank (usually) at home was wine.  Dad got CASES of some goddamned cab sauv labled "Bottled exclusively for the Alexander Kravitzes" - who knows how much that cost him.  We never had any of their friends over, so he must've taken it with him to parties.  Imagine talking to HIM at a party.  What a pretentious ass. 

If they stayed home they would stay up in the 'grown up' living room, listening to jazz and smoking cigars (BOTH OF THEM SMOKING HUGE CIGARS) and drink drank drunk.

They would go out FANCY sometimes, to LA - suits and organza dresses from Saks Fifth Avenue (<--quite posh in the day) and come home SMASHED.  She was his Dancing Monkey on those nights, a barbie meant to be shown off and be quiet.

The fights were EPIC.  Wine bottles thrown, screaming, crying (her) hiding in various places (us), pots and pans *bang* and *smash* (him).  I have no idea if they were ever hungover, I was NEVER around them in the morning.  Or anytime I could escape, really.

I would say ALL of us ended up with addiction problems.  Some solved it by only EVER having one glass of wine, maybe once a year.  Some of us are (WERE) still bathing our livers in vodka.  A couple toned it down and can have a drink or two before dinner and stop there <--wtf?  And our kids - shit balls.  They ALL (the older ones, the ones high-school and up I am guessing) have drinking issues.  THAT didn't make it out of the filter.  Behaviour modeled is behaviour  copied - hey!  Shouldn't that be a bumper sticker or tee shirt??  Shyeah...  drinking problems.


  1. Was given sips of NF's beer at age 5. Drinking at family gatherings was allowed and encouraged. That's how the N grandparents bribed their SG daughter, my poor alcoholic aunt, to stay trapped for life, even after they died.

    Got drunk at 13 for the first time, regular drinker since 15. My daddy thought that was fine. Mixing 3 different drinks and pot, puking often. Drinking was like a self-destructive religion to me. I could drink a lot and was proud of it.

    Met DH at age 18. He very rarely drank very small quantities. He didn't think drinking was cool, so my enthusiasm waned a little, but still depression kept me controlled by alcohol.

    Toned down significantly in the past few years - learning about NPD helped me uncover the root causes. Now, 2 beers after dinner 3 times a week; more than that (3-4) maybe once every two weeks, with friends. I can actually live like this - as in, really live life.

    So great to see you dealing with this part of your legacy. I've yet to meet a drinker who had wonderful, truly loving parents and a great childhood.

    1. Eesh - sounds like what we know of NSIL. We believe NMIL's father was an alcoholic, and one of her brothers is rumored to be <---shows how little they have worked at their dysfunctions - they aren't even honest about it so no one really knows. That NMIL's father was an alcoholic was about all anyone knew about the man, from my understanding. DH doesn't know much about any of his distant relatives, and when he tried to ask (in 2009) his uncles flat out ignored him, his Naunt gave him some quick superficial bullshit, and his NMIL asked "if she could talk about it over the phone," to which DH responded, "No." and then it was never discussed again.

      So. About all we know is that some of them may or may not be alcoholics some of the time.

      Vague. Just the way the narcs like it. Suffice it to say, I do think there was/is raging alcoholism that went/is going on. NSIL hasn't escaped that legacy.

  2. My NM's father was/is an alcoholic. I know her childhood was rough due to it. Lots of hauling him out of bars, fights, terrorized by him. Her mother was the narc (although maybe he is too). She was a childish, socially inept woman who rarely left the house as she got older (and even when she had a young family). She pawned a lot of her mothering off on my mother. My mother drinks, but I don't know if to excess. She hides things a lot. Because she's perfect. My sister is an alcoholic. It must go hand in hand with narcissism.

  3. It continues to amaze me that not matter what our abuse - from soup to nuts - we all ended up with the same baggage. Child abuse begets SO MUCH of a horrible legacy.

    It is really a trip to me that we all suffer from the exact same issues, possibly (likely) on differing levels but STILL. Physical, emotional, verbal - abuse is abuse is abuse.