Dark Holidays? This One’s For You

Holiday Heartache

What makes this season so impossibly difficult for addicts and those who love them? For that matter, why are suicides and death rates always highest around the holidays?

We hear so many stories of heartache this month. Have you noticed this is a seasonal issue? People always seem to feel hopeless during the holidays. Why is that?

Holiday Flashbacks

Is it the zingy holiday music, the traditional and festive TV programs, or commercials with their insane chatter that makes us feel worse? The messages hit us:

  • We’re not ‘normal’
  • We’re not like others with a perfect family
  • And above all, we’re not ‘happy’ enough.

On the other hand, maybe it’s our memories of early childhood idealism? The yearly hope that December would be fun this year. The family would unite. It really would be a Wonderful Life and a life worth living.

Or, maybe it’s something darker.

Seeing others in depression flashes me back to the struggles of my own addiction prison.

I would be better off dead. My life makes no sense. It never did! Everyone would be better off if I’d never even been born. Since it’s too late for that, the least I can do is to disappear and, of course, make it look accidental.

This year, I’m in tears, but not for myself. Reminded of my own captive days by the current suffering of others, I want to say, “It gets better”, but how do I know? I don’t. It got better for me. It might not get better for you. I don’t know.

Holiday Hope

It’s all about choices, though. That I know. This is what helped me:

  1. I found a support group that offered help, not just fellowship
  2. I got a mentor
  3. I was willing to change
  4. I worked the Steps quickly