Science says that just like some people are allergic to peanuts, others are allergic to alcohol and drugs. If one of your parents has an addiction allergy, you might have that same allergy hiding in your genes. The good news is that you have a choice. Marc and Lianna Treitler teach you how to stop your allergy from ever “turning on.”
If you’re wondering what’s happening in your family, and what you should do, My Dad is an Alcoholic will help you find your way.
Why the Treitlers Wrote My Dad is an Alcoholic
I knew I had a serious problem for the last 10 years of my drinking. I literally could not go a single night without alcohol, without fearing a night of tossing and turning. But recognizing that there is a problem is only a minor part of the road to recovery. You have to realize that your life is unraveling, or becoming unmanageable, as AA says. You also need to have something in jeopardy that you love more than alcohol – something that might leave, something you might lose. The idea of that loss must scare the addict more than the fear (physical, mental and emotional) of losing the substance. For many people this is losing a job, wife, freedom, or children. For most addicts, there is never such a realization.
My daughter’s knowledge of my drinking was my catalyst to recovery.
For me, thankfully I always loved my family more than myself. And as a father I would always put my kids first. So when I realized that Lianna was aware of my drinking (at a concert) I felt like a sledgehammer had hit me in the chest and something clicked. A few days later I consciously, or subconsciously, drank myself into a state where I would have to ask for help.
Knowledge is power. I knew from my first day in rehab that I had to do something about children with addiction in their genes not knowing about the allergy to alcohol, about the genetic predisposition to become addicted to it. I wanted to give the power to avoid alcoholism to kids. I swore I would make sure my children would have the knowledge they needed to live sober lives.
For years I pondered the question of how to best accomplish this. I would watch the kids study their schoolwork and see what was most effective in creating long lasting learning. Having the kids read my story would be powerful for sure. But one day I saw Lianna writing an essay and thought to myself, wouldn’t the message sink in more if she was actually involved in writing it, and drawing the characters. This would take the message in their brain to an entirely different level.
Seeing my children participate in this process gives me an overwhelming feeling of peace, knowing that this mission with my children is complete. And maybe it can help others.
When asked what made her want to write this book with her Dad, Lianna said:
I really want people to be able to learn from what happened to me … I want kids to know they can get help somewhere and they are not alone.
About the Book
Just like most people never have to think about being allergic to peanuts — because they are not allergic to peanuts — most people never have to think about becoming alcoholics. Why? Because they are not predisposed to becoming alcoholics. Because they do not have the gene that functionally makes them allergic to alcohol.
About 28 million American children under the age of 18 have parents who are alcoholics. And statistics show that children who have an alcoholic parent are decidedly more predisposed to becoming alcoholic, too. And it is for them that the Treitler family wrote this book.
- Why do we become alcoholics?
- What role do our genes play?
- How can we avoid alcoholism?
- Where do we get help?
Together Marc Treitler and his family answer these questions and more for pre-teens dealing with their alcoholic parents and the fear of becoming like them.
“Willpower and “trying hard” cannot beat addiction. I’ve succeeded in everything I have ever done in life—school, work, career—but I could not beat this disease once it caught hold. Not without professional help. But you can beat it . . . by never letting it start.” —Marc Treitler
At times whimsical, always empowering, and user-friendly, MY DAD IS AN ALCOHOLIC is a kid’s guide for shutting down the alcohol gene before it gains a foothold in any young person’s life.