Loosing a parent to an addition.

Loosing a parent to an addiction, well… my story cut down… my mum was a almost perfect mum up until she started drinking in my late teens… I knew she still loved me but it doesn’t remove the sting. I’m now 34 and lost her suddenly in January 2022… I then went on to be my mothers mum (my nan) full time carer till the end of her life this January 2023… I’m managing the loss of my nana as she got to 81 and was pretty fed up of life due to being bed bound and blind… but I can’t seem to shift the feeling of letting my mum down by not communicating, and also not understanding addictions. I’ve since educated my self on addictions and i feel wworse. Like if only I really tried to talk to her to find out what the issue underlying really was, or asked her what’s making her do these things? I feel like I let her down when reallt all she might of needed was someone to talk to and get her feelings out. Who knows I could be wrong and she didn’t have a reason for drinking but now I’ll never know and it’s driving me crazy… I now realise I’m not to blame but I also can’t seem to shift the self shame of letting her down?
We didn’t speak for years until she passed away and the Xmas before we both sent each other cards but she’s reached out by putting her address in, I never went and 3 weeks later she was gone. Stupid me

Hello @Gemma12, thank you for reaching out. I am so sorry for the loss of your mum, and more recently your nana. Most of our members have sadly lost a loved one and will understand some of what you are going through. I really hope you find the community to be a support to you.

Losing a parent is devastating, and losing them to an addiction can bring with it a range of complex feelings as part of our grieving. It may help to connect with others who have been there, too. Are you in touch with National Association of Children Of Alcoholics (NACOA) at all? They offer support to people who have been affected by their parent’s drinking. They have a helpline on 0800 358 3456 or you can email helpline@Nacoa.org.uk. They also have a support section here.

Adult Children of Alcoholics also runs support groups. If you are interested in finding out more, you can visit their website.

Sue Ryder offers an online bereavement counselling service. This is a free service and sessions are held via video chat so you can attend from home. There’s more information about this service here: sueryder.org/counselling.

You can also make an appointment with your GP and ask to be referred to counselling or other support services in your area.

Please keep reaching out - you are not alone.

Take care,
Seaneen