I know you don’t know me, but I know you. I am just like you. I know what you’re going through, I know what’s ahead. And I know how much it hurts.

We go through something different in our lives, we survive something different.

I know how utterly alone you feel, I know how completely bewildered you are. I know how angry you are. But above all, I know how brokenhearted you are.

The people we love, they turn into monsters. They break us. They tear us down until we are nothing left. They create a world in which we live in constant fear and panic. They hold our love for them against us and use it to inflict pain.

We are the children of alcoholics.

But because of who we are, because we are their children, we hope they will change. That we will change them. We hope that we will understand. We tell ourselves we’ll never be like them. We try to pretend we’re all okay, when on the inside we’re breaking down. We sometimes wish terrible things, things that we would never admit out loud. We wish for different parents, different lives, sometimes we wish they were gone.

Some days it is all we can think about. We wonder who will be on the other end of their phone call. We wonder if we’ve upset them. We live in fear, not knowing what will happen. We know that we can’t hide from it and we fear there is no escape. Some days it feels hopeless.

I have yet to learn how to deal with this pain, but I am slowly changing. I am changing the way I let them treat me, the way I let them make me feel. I’m learning that I am not alone. YOU are not alone. We try to explain it, we try to hide it and pretend like we’re okay. We think and we know that no one will truly understand how we feel. Because there are simply no words to describe it. But we can’t hide any more and we shouldn’t. We’re allowed to feel broken, we’re allowed to be angry. We’re allowed to be human.

They may have damaged us, possibly beyond repair. But they’ve also made us stronger, even if we don’t know it yet. We will get past this. We will heal from it and learn to manage our emotions. But give yourself time, give yourself grace. Love yourself. Stand up for yourself. Because you are not wrong, you are not to blame. You were given this life for reasons unknown, but you were given it because you can survive it. You are stronger than your parents, you are stronger than this. You will make it, even if it is the darkest of days.

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