Friday, May 05, 2006

Drinking & Driving & Rehab, Oh My!!

I'm sorry....but
this
just irritates the hell out of me. I know that drug addiction and alcoholism are classified as diseases, and as such, they demand my respect
and my empathy. However, the fact that I spent a good portion of my adulthood trying to clean up after an alcoholic pretty much emptied my pity-purse for
good.

It's such an easy answer.....do something wrong, sign yourself into a
hospital. You just might get better and even if you don't, well, you've
at least assured yourself several weeks of peace, quiet and relative safety.
Not so your family, of course, they're the ones left holding the bag,
so to speak. But you, you'll be protected from anything unpleasant
like reporters, police officers, angry constituents, demanding bill
collectors, displeased bosses, disappointed family members, etc etc etc.

I speak from experience, obviously. When I was barely a kid myself,
in my very young mid-20's, my then-husband got into trouble at work and
signed himself into a rehab center. I was left at home with a young son,
a baby son and another baby on the way. Oh, and did I mention that I
was also penniless and jobless at the time? I had no way to pay the
bills, we had no heat in our apartment and I was getting daily calls
from his ex-wife, his bill collectors, his boss and his family
demanding that something be done. (As well as the occasional call
from the concerned bar-maid down at his local bar & tap....and
believe me, she was really concerned.....for reasons I was too naive
to figure out at the time) Anyhow, his visitors were restricted to me,
myself and I....and only for an hour on Tues and Thurs and every other
Saturday. The rest of the time, while I was scrambling alone to keep a roof
over our heads and food in our mouths, he was busy talking to
sympathetic doctors, nurses and social workers, attending group therapy
meetings, putting together jigsaw puzzles and just generally doing whatever recovering alcoholics do. All I know is, my kids were hungry and the
food there looked a damn sight better than what I was
putting on my own table at home. His counselors warned me repeatedly not
to "upset him" during this vital and important time. In other words,
I could visit, but I couldn't complain. Hell, complain,
I couldn't even confide. When my damn apartment building
caught on fire due to the faulty furnace leaving us with no place to
live, I was not even ALLOWED to tell him. Instead, I was left with
two kids and a pregnancy out there in the cold, all by myself because
to bother him with such a disaster just might interfere with HIS recovery.

Well, goddamn!!!! Maybe that's what "I" should have done, huh???
Gotten rip-roaring drunk and then signed myself into a hospital and
let someone take care of ME for a change.

Ok....I'm done. :) But ya know what, it felt good to just SAY it...
just this once. I've been "through" rehab a total of 5 times with two ex-
husbands (hmmm, do ya think something about me encourages addiction?)
and nothing about it left a lasting impression other than it appears to
be a lot more coddling than any one person deserves....regardless of his
or her disease. I don't think there's another disease in the world that gets
catered to so kindly.

But I digress.....Patrick Kennedy has taken the position that he's ill
and he needs help and he's seeking it pronto....like before anyone can
question him any further or before he has to prove he had honestly come
by his 'scripts for Ambien and Phenagren.

The only question I'd like to ask him is this - since he states he
has "no recollection of the events surrounding the crash into a
barricade on Capitol Hill early Thursday."
then just how can he
be so damn sure that he wasn't drinking?

1 comment:

shann said...

I am with you on this- of course his family, if he has one and i don't care- will have none of the hard times you did.

This just makes me mad-

my sister abd her husband were both gambling addicts (they lived in Las Vegas, duh) and lost houses and cars and almost their children before they came out of it- if they have.