I am a 28 year old woman living in the US. Throughout my childhood and teenage years I journaled religiously, hoping that one day I could turn my story into a book. When i was older I envisioned authoring a book that could help children and teens cope with having a parent who was an addict. Of course, now I realize I am not nearly motivated enough nor talented enough to make that vision a reality. I have all these stories locked in my head and scribbled furiously on notebook paper and I feel the need to share them. Maybe it will be cathartic; maybe it will be painful- I don't really know. But it is my story and I want to share it.
It is not a story of how being raised by an addict made me a better or stronger person.
It is not a story of how my father beat addiction and went on to lead a normal, healthy life.
It is not a story of love and redemption.
It is not a story that will make an addict feel any better about what they are doing to their children. If that is what you are looking for, you have come to the wrong place.
However, if you are an addict, this is what you are doing to your children. Have no doubt in your mind that what you are doing is selfish and harmful. It is, and it will damage your children for the rest of their lives.
I am not going to say that I coped with my father's addiction in the best ways, nor that this story is just like any other story or that every other child of an addict experiences life the way I have. That would be ridiculous to assume. However, there is damage that is done when I child is raised in a home where a substance is more important than they are.