Alcoholism is a family disease. It engulfs all those who love the alcoholic. Because of this, I started interviewing loved ones in 2021 for our series, “Hope for the Family.” It has become one of my favorite series and I have so much respect and admiration for these loved ones that use their stories to help others. Because of my own story, I’ve always had a special place in my heart for mothers, both on the alcoholic side and the family side. As a mother, I can’t imagine how hard it would be watching your child suffer and being completely powerless over it. I knew that I wanted to interview a mother and daughter for Mother’s Day. After hearing the way Emily spoke about her mom in her own story, I knew they would be the perfect pair.
In the beginning, Sue Ann was feeling nervous about broadcasting her story for the world to hear, but it didn’t take long for her to become completely transparent and open up. Sue Ann raised Emily by herself after Emily’s father passed away and talks about how difficult it was watching her only child destroy her life with alcohol. Sue Ann was very open about her denial and ignorance around her daughter’s alcoholism, even at one time telling her “You’re not an alcoholic. We’re from a good family!” By the time Emily got sober, Sue Ann was involved in her own 12-Step program and learned the truth about alcoholism and was able to set clear boundaries with her daughter. One of those boundaries being that Emily could no longer stay with her.
Throughout the interview, I got to witness a mother and daughter who are both very proud of one another. Sue Ann came to be proud of how Emily embraces her alcoholism and recovery without any shame. Emily voiced how much she loves seeing her mom help others today. Now because of Emily’s alcoholism and their own recovery, they are able to share this special connection in a way other mothers and daughter do not.
I’m grateful Emily and her mother gave me the opportunity to get to know each of them on a deeper level and share their story with the world. Sue Ann’s story shows that loved ones can find their own solution and freedom regardless of the alcoholic’s recovery. Every week, our Family Support Group is showing other loved ones how they can achieve the same freedom.