The Effect of Alcoholism on the Whole Family


I wanted to open up to family members on my posts this week. The alcoholic and drug users are definitely sick, but we forget, that the family members may be more dysfunctional than the addict. Why? In my opinion, we are sober and remember all the things said to us, the mental and phycial abuse, the pain watching our loved ones bring themselves closer to death, we are the ones watching them as they are hooked-up to machines in the hospital trying to keep their bodies alive with hope that they will pull through when their organs are shutting down. 

The users are in another world and don’t remember anything the next day, but we do. These topics and details are not to make the alcoholic or drug user feel guilty. Far from it. It’s to pull us together as a family unit to see what happens behind closed doors with all of us. 

I, and my beloved family members, did exactly that with my husband, Richie, and my daughter, Lori, as they lay dying in hospitals. We watched as the demon pulled our hearts out of us, and grabbed so tightly to our loved ones that we had no strength or control to pull them apart. Richie died at 45 years of age at the VA Hospital in Providence, Rhode Island after one day being in a coma after we hung onto two weeks of him trying to recover. 

The sad part is when you see them dying in a hospital bed swearing to NO MORE DRINKING. THIS IS IT! They mean it at the time and you’re crushed it’s too late.

We suffered more with Lori being 3 weeks in a hospital, when the cycle kept going seeing her coming back to herself to only keep watching her vital signs going down. Watching no more urine dripping in the container at the bottom of her bed because her kidneys shut down. Because of that, the fluids they were giving her through IV’s had nowhere to go, so it went into her skin tissues to make her bloat to not recognizing her. Lori died at 39 years of age at the Charlton Memorial Hospital in Fall River, Massachusetts. She was laid to rest with Richie at the St. Patrick Cemetery in Somerset, Massachusetts. There are no words to describe this pain and helplessness. Only the people who have experienced the loss can understand. 

I thought I understood this disease when I read about a death from addiction that a family was suffering through, seeing it on television, hearing it from a friend, or reading about it in the newspaper. Until the disease hits your family member, it’s then that we standup and give attention to this disease that is worldwide. 

Hopefully, an alcoholic, drug user, or prescription users overusing their meds, will read this and face the fact you are loved. You are the ones who have to do the fighting to give your habit up. Family can only love and support you.

As for the dealers of drugs, I pray for you to someday see what you are actually doing ……..for money. You are the demon I speak about who has no heart in them or any emotions of becoming a killer. You are the ones who pass the drugs on to the once happy, loving people, to become rich. Remember one thing, and don’t ignore it; YOU will have one more person to account to for your actions of killing millions of people. It will be at the time of your own death facing God. 

Read about our family with alcohol abuse, reality of it with nothing hidden, the pain and suffering with all of us with my books at

I am available for talks in the area, email me at [email protected]

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