It’s hostages are usually people, but relationships, mental health, physical health, emotional health, a person’s business, someone’s career, overall stability, and wellness are almost always banged up too. You name it. If it’s in the way, it either moves, or gets sucked in.
Everything adjusts trying to fit naturally into a system that is no longer functioning in a natural way.
Addiction injects a level of intensity that overrides what most people are wired to handle on a day-to-day basis.
Basically, anyone close enough to even look like they are involved or invested in the family, gets involuntarily swallowed.
Even the people who are quick to create distance hoping lessen their chances of being damaged by this health crisis still find themselves struggling internally with some level of guilt and anxiety relating to their decision to create boundaries in the first place. They are usually the ones sitting in a chair in Al-Anon, in disbelief.
Each person within the family system will be affected in a different way,
and how it changes a person depends on many different variables.
Things like severity of trauma endured, mental wellness, personality, temperament, birth order, ability to cope, etc. Some people call it nature, some nurture, others a combo of the two.
Whatever you view it as doesn’t change one this one thing.
Wishing or hoping to forcefully make a broken system work
Repair and restoration are sought after long-term side effects of every person within that system healing as individuals. Over time the goal is to heal as a unit. It can take years and most often, families struggle as they strive to find a healthy balance of reconciling the past, and embracing the here and now without enmeshing the two.
But there is good news is:
Change happens one person at a time, one mended heart at a time.
You are in charge of you, and only you.
At any time, you are allowed to choose to be the one who stands up to fight against this powerful & convincing lie, the one that has been telling you that there is no way out.
The one that you have believed for far too long.
The voice that has whispered to you that you aren’t strong enough for something like this.
No, the destruction cannot be erased and the past cannot be changed.
But even if you feel like you are the one who has done the majority of the damage,
or despite being the one who likely contributed most to the brokenness of your family spirit…
You can still choose to change.
You are still a capable person who is in charge of whether or not you are walking toward something new.
Restoration and healing are still waiting for you.
You can still commit to rebuilding things from exactly where you are.
You can still be where this cycle stops.
It can all come to an end right here with you.
One healthy choice at a time.