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Did you grow up in a drug / alcohol / abusive environment?


Lisa Did you grow up in a drug / alcohol / abusive environment?
I'd be interested to know how many of the addicts here came from families where drug and/or alcohol use/abuse was prevalent.

Did you grow up in a family where drugs/alcohol was a problem? Or were you "sheltered" and sought them out yourself?

I sought 'em out myself. My parents would have been horrified if they knew a quarter of the things I've done. They did everything in their power to provide a stable, loving and responsible home for me, and it was ME and ME only that had that spark of "badness" (for lack of a better word) in me.

What about you?
     Replies...
Sfj Re: Did you grow up in a drug / alcohol / abusive environment?
My father was alcoholic.
He had three major killer addictions.
He drank everyday. He smoked cigs, a pack a day for life. And ate a high fat, high cholesterol diet.

They combined to kill him early. Stroke.

My brother is alcoholic.
pepper Re: Did you grow up in a drug / alcohol / abusive environment?
I'm not an addict, but my son is. He was raised by me alone, but in a very stable and loving home. His father has an addictive personality, but was not part of his life. Guess it could be hereditary? He always went to extremes in things he did - sports, academics, and work. I used to joke with him that he needed to find the middle ground or he'd wear out too soon. That was when he was a sophomore in high school. If only I'd known how true those words were turn out to be.
RIP Re: Did you grow up in a drug / alcohol / abusive environment?
No alcohol or drug use by my parents . they would drink wine on holidays.

I wasn't sheltered, just made the decision to try all on my own.
Saved
inillinois
Re: Did you grow up in a drug / alcohol / abusive environment?
My counselor just told me last week that a child's behavior is based only 20% on outside influences. It's 80% genetics!!!

To me, that's scary as all heck!! I hope to God my counselor is wrong. Otherwise, my son's going to have major issues. 
RIP Re: Did you grow up in a drug / alcohol / abusive environment?
Dear Savedinillinois,
What type of doctorate degree does your counselor have?

Ask him to show you some hard facts Like the new England journal of medicine or Harvard university before I would believe this type of assumption.
Lisa Re: Did you grow up in a drug / alcohol / abusive environment?
Hi Saved,

Well, just to put your mind at ease, the fact that no one in my family as far as anyone knows has ever had an abuse or addiction problem, and I have a MAJOR one, kind of blows your counselor's theory.

Also, my ex-husband came from a non-drinking, non-drugging family and he ended up an addict, also.

And on the other end of the spectrum, I'm an addict, my ex-husband is an addict, and our son (so far, anyway) shows absolutely NO signs of the kind of behavior/personality/traits that so many addicts share (KNOCK ON WOOD AND THANK THE HEAVENS!)

So, while genetics most likely do play in, no one knows the extent and it's probably NOT 80%.
Jamie
J1979
Re: Did you grow up in a drug / alcohol / abusive environment?
My father was a functioning alcoholic while I was growing up, only recently has his addiction started to catch up to him. He is unable to work 40 hour work weeks anymore, thank god he has a rich Mom and a generous friends or else he would be on the street, for real. I grew up in a middle class household, Dad worked and Mom stayed home most of my life. Dad was always working, he was a workaholic and when he wasn't working he was at the bar drinking. So he wasn't around much. He paid the bills and that's about it. The only time he spoke to me was to try and punish me but I didn't listen to him because I could not and would not respect someone who was drunk trying to tell me what not to do. Another reason I couldn't respect him was because he was never involved in my life, why should he be able to just step in an punish me when he was never around for the good times?
vctry7 Re: Did you grow up in a drug / alcohol / abusive environment?
Both parents were addicts/alcoholics. I lived with them until I was 12. I was using drugs and had been arrested by then.

Moved in with grandparents. Gram used legal drugs - pills. Granddad was a workaholic. Both suffered from extreme denial about any problems with me or themselves.
candi
cayne
365
Re: Did you grow up in a drug / alcohol / abusive environment?
My father was an alcoholic, my mother never drank, smoked or did any drugs. i smoked pot when i was 16, never really liked it, drank a lot at 21. i didn't start using meth until i was 24 to lose weight after my 2 kids were born. i do know that most of the family on both my father and mothers side are alcoholics, and some died because of it. but if any of them ever did drugs, i don't know about it. i have 1 brother (out of 4) who smokes pot regularly, tried meth once but didn't like it. I'm the only one who really got addicted.
BentBut
Not
Broken
Re: Did you grow up in a drug / alcohol / abusive environment?
Dad was 20 years my Mom's senior. He adopted his first wife's daughter at age 5 and soon after they had my step- brother. Not long after giving birth, Dad's first wife was diagnosed bipolar and schizophrenic but the meds way back then were horrid and she would not take them. She became quite violent with my Dad just as my step-brother was about to graduate and go into the Navy. Dad had reason to fear for his life and left, taking two years for divorce back then vs. one year now. My step-brother is an alcoholic major.

Mom can pick up a cig today and not smoke another for fifteen years--no joking. Her uncles were alcoholics (the one's I saw fall down drunk that scared me to no end). Dad smoked cigs for 20 years. There was one brother of his who was an alcoholic out of 9 children. No other abuses in the family tree.

I was 4 when Dad got his first permanent pacemaker and he came off the Frito Lay route he had for 19 years. I had both parents at home with me growing up. My brother or sister never came around--I was known as the b*astard child by them. I admit I was spoiled rotten but no information was ever withheld from me. I wasn't given free-run either as long as Dad was alive, which was until I was 15. Wine and beer were had at dinner with no problem, and Dad started my "education" by giving me a shot glass half-full of Pabst Blue Ribbon Beer or wine with a meal. We were a very tight, loving family, no fights whatsoever, and God was in our home and we went to church, which I loved.

I made my own choices......not the heredity.
danimal
55
Re: Did you grow up in a drug / alcohol / abusive environment?
No genetic history [adopted], but yeah my parents were full blown drunks...daily.
Kick off at noon was typical with the Scotch flowing freely.
By 8 or 9 in the evening  momma [step] was forced to use contorted sign language rather than try and talk.
The adoptive momma was losing it entirely via booze prior to spending her last 12 years in the funny farm.
I went to see her there, she thought I was a staff member, said she always wanted kids. 
Tobacco was the norm, in retrospect I think that's why I got car sick all the time....have puke bucket will travel.
And of course moms pill basket, diet pills, uppers...downers...in betweeners.
A attend AA a few miles from where they got me snakeshyt drunk at age 12, all the Cold Duck I could drink.
They seemed to think it was pretty cute to see little danimal spin out and hurl the way he did.
It wasn't funny 
It was the late 60's...prime time to be a drug addict.
le
grumps
Re: Did you grow up in a drug / alcohol / abusive environment?
The 80% genetics thing is utter tripe.

My dad is an alcoholic. His family is almost completely either alcoholic, addicts, or co-dependent enablers. We like our vices. My grandmother, who has a personality very much like my own, is very stubborn. She doesn't party anymore, mainly because she is too sick now. But she can't get any of her surgeries done because she WON'T quit smoking. She cancels doctors appointments all the time to avoid getting confronted. She suffers incredibly, AND she still works because she blows money. And eats food that makes her sick. Living it up. 

Part of my wanting to change my life is so that I don't end up like her. I am seeing how she pays so dearly for her addictions, not all of them being "traditional" addictions. She doesn't really drink anymore, but when she was my age and older, the instant gratification and the partying was more important than her responsibilities.

Now she enables the @#%$ out of everyone.

My mom is a non drinking, non partying hermit. Well, she likes pills, but not that much. I don't think they are that big of a problem for her. My moms side of the family is generally pretty clean, the alcoholics and drug addicts were generally the ones that my mom, aunts, etc. married. My brother used to love heroin, my sister cocaine, but they both put that well behind them now.

Hopefully that will be my story with meth.

My family has always been pretty unsheltering, but safe. I was allowed to make my own decisions. My preference is to take responsibility for my own drug use.
sam
witch
Re: Did you grow up in a drug / alcohol / abusive environment?
Maybe meth is kind of different because you can become addicted as soon as the first use?
Whether you are an "addictive personality" by genetics or background might not matter.
Some people can drink but not become alcoholic,
some people can do certain drugs a few times, then decide it's a bad idea...
But it seems that this one can get you from the get go....no trial period allowed.
Just an idea, as I don't have personal experience.
chris
gonz
Re: Did you grow up in a drug / alcohol / abusive environment?
My father was an alcoholic and was addicted for some time. The mentality of this side of my family is pretty focused on drug sales, there are more than a few addicts on this side. Lots of family locked up. Lots have done time.
#'s: 10 brothers, 1 sister.

My mother never really drank, her father was an alcoholic. All my uncles drank in excess, a few used drugs, maybe 3 addicts, myself included. 2 have done time, myself included.
#'s: 12 brothers, 4 sisters.

For me, I knew about drugs in my teens, I knew my dad's side was involved in drugs, I knew it was wrong. My mother provided a well stocked home, but I lived with BS.
The time I spent with my grandmother, 6 mos - 6 years, I believed help me eventually find balance with everything. That and other tools on addiction I've picked up along the way.

For me, drugs were not unknown, dealing with life situations were. Drugs helped me mask pain, until I started loosing too much was I willing to feel pains and start facing them. Instant gratification is another thing I've had to learn to deal with. I'm can be impatient... seeing that and learning how to deal with things, often as they come up, is what helps keep me clean.

I can still overindulge... that goes with anything. That comes from being so spoiled by my grams.

Sorting out stuff is really quite interesting.
Hstuerke Re: Did you grow up in a drug / alcohol / abusive environment?
Hey there. My Mother was an addict (drugs, alcohol, pills), my father was an alcoholic and a drug user. I have TRIED things (alcohol, weed and XTC) but far and in-between. Quit those things when I had my children. I don't have an addictive personality as some would say, in the least and I thank my parents for that cause them being the way they were made me not want to ever be like them. My husband is the drug addict. HIS mother and father didn't/doesn't drink, do drugs or ever smoked a cigarette. You tell me what's wrong with this picture...weird eh? 
chris
gonz
Re: Did you grow up in a drug / alcohol / abusive environment?
My kids don't do drugs.
My son smoked pot for a bit, but he's done with that.

I have a 14 year old-tomorrow, she's so against drugs. I'm very open about everything.

I'm hoping for a drug-free generation.
Guene Re: Did you grow up in a drug / alcohol / abusive environment?
Well, Lisa, I'm not a druggie but I did smoke pot when I was younger, so I guess you could say I was a little. Both parents were Alcoholics and Mike's parents were alcoholics too. And there was depression on both sides of our parents, so I guess Jamie was the lucky one. Mike also did some drugs and had a drinking problem, but he quit. That's about all I can tell you.
still
catest
Re: Did you grow up in a drug / alcohol / abusive environment?
My mom partied a lot in the army, where I was conceived. Pot, alcohol, acid, shrooms, speed pills. Apparently, so did my biological sperm donor (who I've never met).

After she had me, she did very little partying. Her and my dad (step dad, technically) got married when I was 5, and both would drink occasionally, but not to excess.

Then when I was 13, my mom started partying with MY teenage friends, smoking pot and drinking with them/us. She would occasionally trip acid, too. But by then, I was already started, on my own, with various drugs.

So no, I wasn't exposed to the drug lifestyle until I found it myself and actually re-introduced it to my mom. She just never got into the daily use, or the use of speed - not since the army days.
SOS
1988
Re: Did you grow up in a drug / alcohol / abusive environment?
I came from a cold home, dad drank and smoked cigs, kind of abusive....By the time I started smoking pot at 13 I was watching my cracked out brother freak out and sell. got addicted myself at 15...I'd say yes lots of problems in this family  
forget
suzette
Re: Did you grow up in a drug / alcohol / abusive environment?
my parents partied their a**es off....
..from the time they divorced when I was 6  until I was about 19.   my dad ran rocky horror picture show.......back in the day, tim curry, and richard obrien would come to his theatre it was the longest running, biggest spectacle in Atlanta]
.............and he partied alright.

my mom was dating a guitar player in
"the Atlanta rhythm section" that wrote all the songs for
Dennis Yost and the classics four...
.....spooky, stormy, traces, hooked on a feeling....
and was parting with lynard skynard, allmond brothers'
both of em did coke, qualudes, match head t....whatever that is.   and my mom worked in a hospital and was taking 20 something  valium a day...plus booze.  those were the good ol days.....it was when steve martin was a "wild and crazy guy"
and do you think I'm sexy and sultins of swing were popular.
.....now they are married again and sober.
like they were when they started out.

See also:

Have you ever said, Enough is Enough?

How do you let go of your guilt because of Meth?


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