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Post Info TOPIC: The Original ACOA Laundry List: 14. Para-Alcoholics Are Reactors Rather Than Actors.


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The Original ACOA Laundry List: 14. Para-Alcoholics Are Reactors Rather Than Actors.


14. Para-Alcoholics Are Reactors Rather Than Actors.

On the stage of life the para-alcoholic waits for the signals and directions of others.  The para-alcoholic is generally an other-directed individual who tries to determine an acceptable course of action based upon his or her perception of what will please and satisfy others.

The ACOA is often described as an adaptive individual with a very vague central self.  All through childhood the ACOA was forced to adapt, adjust and respond to the needs and demands of drunken and often abusive parents.  This child learns to react almost automatically, usually out of fear or need.  And it is this response pattern, often driven by dependency and low self-esteem, that ACOAs carry into their adult world.

In the recovery process ACOAs need to learn to process uncomfortable feelings and demands without reacting automatically.  What helped me with this issue was the technique of not responding immediately - no quick reply, no jumping into action.  I forced myself to stop and think, which also gave me time to process the disturbing feelings that were bouncing around inside me.  Instead of reacting I learned to temporize, to tell people that I wanted to think about it first.

Initially I was amazed at how people respected my request for time or my inaction.  I learned that as an ACOA I had been programmed to respond in an unhealthy way to both sick and healthy situations.  Now I usually take charge of my responses, and they are almost always guided by a healthy respect for what is appropriate and in "my" best interests.  Most of the time I have stopped looking for validation and approval from others.


The Laundry List: The ACOA Experience, pp. 40-41
Copyright 1991 by Tony A. with Dan F.

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This reading speaks to me.

I used to think that "feeling my feelings" meant reacting and exploding.  However, this response was not very productive.

Waiting and thinking it through works much better for me.  Then I can deliver a calm, intelligent response instead of saying things I may regret later.

I have also learned that honesty is not always the best policy.  Sometimes "political correctness" is required.

In Recovery,

~ Mrs. Snoopy

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Mrs_Snoopy wrote:

14. Para-Alcoholics Are Reactors Rather Than Actors.

 tries to determine an acceptable course of action based upon his or her perception of what will please and satisfy others.

####OH I am so glad I can see BIG progress in this on me...NOW I do what is best for ME



 All through childhood the ACOA was forced to adapt, adjust and respond to the needs and demands of drunken and often abusive parents.  This child learns to react almost automatically, usually out of fear or need.  And it is this response pattern, often driven by dependency and low self-esteem, that ACOAs carry into their adult world.

########YEP....NEVER were my needs considered....I was an OBJECT....INVALIDATED to the maximum......My reactions where always fear based.......Low self esteem from being devalued so much and so bad....



In the recovery process ACOAs need to learn to process uncomfortable feelings and demands without reacting automatically.  What helped me with this issue was the technique of not responding immediately - no quick reply, no jumping into action.  I forced myself to stop and think, which also gave me time to process the disturbing feelings that were bouncing around inside me.  Instead of reacting I learned to temporize, to tell people that I wanted to think about it first.

 

#####I notice for me that MUST feel the FEELINGS...Get them out of the way B4 I do anything ,otherwise I am at risk for reacting...jumping into action....NOW, I make me STOP...THINK.....YES, cry, scream if needed, but then after emotions are dispatched....RE-examine my options......and YEA....I want to "think about it first".....

Initially I was amazed at how people respected my request for time or my inaction.  I learned that as an ACOA I had been programmed to respond in an unhealthy way to both sick and healthy situations.  Now I usually take charge of my responses, and they are almost always guided by a healthy respect for what is appropriate and in "my" best interests.  Most of the time I have stopped looking for validation and approval from others.

 

####### if they don't respect my request?? Too bad!!!! I am going to take care of me....I was programmed to respond in a way that was bad for me..totally unhealthy.....NOW I take care of me...Sometimes waiting..Getting esh from others....What is best for me....I notice, though , that I have to get my emotions out first...Its like maybe I still have a lot of anger in me yet that has to come OUT....and yea, I don't look for validation and approval from others, however, if I am aroudn people who do not validate me and accept me as is...I am GONE>...


The Laundry List: The ACOA Experience, pp. 40-41
Copyright 1991 by Tony A. with Dan F.




 



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Rosie------------REAL love is when I can totally know me and STILL love and accept me


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{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{Rosie}}}}}}}}}}}}


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Hi Mrs Snoopy and Rosie,
This post is so helpful..taking this on board with many thanks.... smiling widely as well.
snowqueen x

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{{{{{{{{{{{{{{snowqueen}}}}}}}}}}}}


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You are so loving, thankyou!!!!
snowqueen x

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Thank you so much for this post Rosie.

Bless you!



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smileI love to tinker with words and ideas.

I was a chamelion who was able to change

my colour to suit the situation. In my youth

at a party I would masquerade as someone

who was a bit drunk- this was the role model

i knew so well. and in so doing I felt drained

and empty inside.

 

I called myself a 'shamelion'- a lot like the

lion. The straw man and the tin man in the

"wizard of OZ".

 

As i write this I catch myself putting up little

barriers against other people. This has got

to be a bit of a fun thing, a joke thing with me now.

 

I like this format- it suits me heaps! As  kid I

devoured lots and lots of books. Got completely

lost in 'em. With this online typing and texting

it uplifts my hotwired childhood imagination. I can

picture, sometimes, in vague outline the people

who are sharing on a thread. I can pause, and

calculate what my place and role might be in

the conversation, something I find hard in real

time.

 

Sometime this must flick back into my 'real time'

life here on Planet David. And it does.

 

Thanks for the share aww

 

-Da.



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...keep it simple... 

 



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I never thought about why I do what I do as reacting but after reading about para alcoholics I have spent most of my life waiting to know what to do from the cues of otheres lacking initiative in case I get it wrong so much fear and anxiety when trying to fit in and be 'perfect' it can change by working the ACA steps thank God 



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