My oldest son, Max, is planning a family get together at a local resort. Max is a great guy who happens to suffer from Bipolar, OCD, and a Rx pain pill addiction. Often he turns things upside down and ruins family events because of his struggles. He talks non-stop about himself. He obsesses about an idea until he makes himself and everyone else dizzy. He suddenly gets upset about an imagined insult. It is draining when his disease gets the best of him. Most of time he is a generous, kind, compassionate soul.
Because in the past Max's symptoms have been difficult for my oldest daughter, Marcie, who is fearful about going. On the other hand, my youngest daughter, Madison is looking forward to our weekend family get together.
I asked Madison why she is happy to go while Marcie isn't. Madison told me she has her Plan B in place. She expects the best, but prepares for the worst this way.
- She is bringing her boyfriend along to help keep the focus off Max
- She has plenty of money and a car with a full tank of gas to escape if she has to
- She booked her own hotel room for alone time
Madison has a Plan B for anytime addiction makes its entrance into her life. Call it setting boundaries. It's that, too. Her Plan B keeps her safe and allows her to have fun. She doesn't want to stop being with her family members who are presently struggling with addiction. She hopes, as I do, that they will find recovery. Having her Plan B system allows her to freely interact with them without worrying what they will do. The family get together will be great for Madison no matter what the disease of addiction does.
Saving An Evening Out
Madison has lived with addiction her entire life and learned at a young age to plan for disaster.
With addiction, she knows there is always a storm brewing on the horizon. She treats it like any other situation in life that is unpredictable. Madison tells me when it looks like rain she takes her umbrella.
One day Madison was invited by her brother, Mitch, to go out to dinner. She knew he was struggling with Alcohol Use Disorder and made sure to have her Plan B in place. He often cancels at the last minute, so Madison made plans to meet a girl friend if Mitch cancelled on her. Her attitude, “It is what it is,” allowed her to accept whatever the evening brought. She would not be depressed, or even angry, if dinner was cancelled.
When Mitch did cancel at the last minute, Madison simply went on with her Plan B.
Learning how to prepare a great Plan B keeps friends and family of those suffering from the disease of addiction safe and allows them to live happier, less resentful life.
Do you have your Plan B ready? It makes all the difference.
Content Originally Published By: Madeline Schloop
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