A highlight from Andrea Ashley

Dr. Drew Podcast


Adult child. Podcast bill wherever you get podcast. She launched the podcast. Just this april. The website is adult child. Podcast dot com. You understand but the jolt shall references in in good time instagram at adult child pod andrew. Welcome to the program. It's our pleasure. Need your little closer tammy got. Yeah no big deal. So where shall we start this conversation. You have a lot of a lot of lived experience and a lot of thoughts about things that i've been working with for twenty thirty years and you know i sort of think people should be listening to those with the live experience but with success recovering. So maybe we stop by your recovery. Do you ever recovery story of your own. Yeah so well. Let's just start with how the pivotal moment. That brought me to creating this podcast so i got sober at nineteen. I was first century. Have four days after my fourteenth birthday and eighth grade. Did you live in los angeles. I grew up. Philadelphia was kind of set the scene tell us about the family. I thank you only child. Father was a partner for a big four public accounting firm. We're supposed to be perfect exactly. Yeah exactly so so. I get sober at nineteen and as you know. It is generally recommended. It's not a requirement but is generally recommended to not date in your first year of recovery. And this is for a couple of reasons right one. Being the high of new relationship the honeymoon phase can also be used as a substitute to the drugs alcohol. Let's let's flip it around so disease will use it. Your disease uses everything so it has an opportunity to use that feeling to satisfy its own evil needs. But but the thing i think about this thing i obviously. This is not uncommon story But you have to grow so much in your first year of sobriety. The thing about romantic relationships is the reason you are together as you kinda fit in ways that are kind of subconscious and are built on all the layers of who you are in that moment to change. It's very hard to change fish. When you're young like that when you're locked into relationship the other person will sort of push you back to being the person they need you to be to keep that fitness together. Yes sick attrac- sick as i'd like i'd attend wouldn't as go away. We say it is. I hope you don't mind me interrupt because it's very material please. Which which is what we always say is to to people early in recovery finding relationship. Look the other person and see a life preserver. grab it and it's an annual. Yes yeah because so yeah. One is a puts you at risk for relapse rate like when it doesn't work out because it typically doesn't and then the other reason what you're saying is another thing which yes. The misery of break-up is a good reason to use yes and ninety nine percent of the time they don't work out but what you're saying is you're talking about what i like to refer to as bps broken picker syndrome. Yes so so what's what happens. So that's yet another corollary. Which is that. The fitness is based on the the well and correct. We'll get to that but the attraction is based on the family too. But that attraction particularly when you're still injured you're still dealing with trauma still early in recovery. That fitness is on based on pathology. So you're gonna find somebody that's not good for sure. Yes they're gonna keep you in that same place because that's where they're at the first guy. I dated The age difference between us was more than my actual age. So that makes me wanna vomit. So so i'm not unique right like this is typically. What happens is we. Don't pick the greatest guys but in all my other friends that i got several to same thing they had bps. But what starts to happen is that they're pickers start to improve and i slowly see my girlfriend's finding themselves in healthy relationships with emotionally available men who treat them the way that they deserve but this was not the case for me and while they may have improved a bit on paper So my my pattern is emotionally unavailable and then often active alcoholics so everyone dated in sobriety over the past twelve. Years has either been in the program or needs to be in the program but what was really Increasing was not only. Were the guys not getting any better. I was getting worse and worse and worse in each relationship were you staying managing to cling the sobriety through that. Yes the whole time for real. Yes yeah fucking miserable. But i couldn't. I couldn't figure out what the fuck was wrong with me. You know it was like in each each relationship would end. And i would say to myself. I'm not going to ignore red flags in next relationship. I'm gonna do things differently and without fail. I would find myself in the exact same situation but each time. I felt crazier. I acted crazier. And i didn't have a fucking clue what was wrong with me were. Are you bringing this back to your support network to your sponsors things either yes. Did you have a sponsor with long term sobriety. Yes was she trying district new house. But i don't even think i wasn't seven. Years is when i started to realize what was going on but yeah they were. But like i said i didn't know what was going on and nobody well. They didn't really nobody was like this. Has to do with your childhood really. Yes nobody talked about attractions fitness and relationships. So you're not in therapy also then at four years sober. I started working with a therapist but she did wonderful things for me. She's a great woman but this was not her area of expertise type stuff with you. Yeah yeah here's the thing like. I it's not like i didn't. I had always known that my childhood had been less ideal. And i had worked through that stuff in you know in a fourth and a fifth step but i i thought because i was never physically abused and because i was never sexually abused and because things look nice on the outside and we had money like sure it was less than ideal but other kids at had way fucking worse than i had so i had no idea the true impact that my upbringing hat on me so at seven years sober i i start to understand what's going on. I have this three week relationship that ends. I'm literally acting like my husband. Thirty years just died. And i had this moment where i was like nonfunctional like it. Got to the point. Like 'cause i didn't realize that i was having these trauma responses but i had this moment of clarity where all of a sudden i realized a little bit of space was created in my head and i realized that there was no way that the reaction that i was having had anything to do with the sky and and so then i started to understand what the what the problem was that insight in that moment. Yes yes yeah. Well then. I heard somebody share about. I went to a meeting. And i heard a woman with over thirty years sobriety. She talked about how at tenure sober she had hit bottom as a result of a dysfunctional relationship and that it was through that that she realized that she You know that it was adult child issues about your primary drugged. Yeah yes So i go so. I read the book. What ethnic background. German on both sides of the family. I didn't see a fucking chance and so so. I read the very austrian. Jane that gets gets it going so i read so i read the book adult children of alcoholics and dysfunctional families and blows my mind. I relate to it even more than the big bunk. A single child. Did you have multiple roles. You had to play. I started off as the hero and then at nine years old. I became the scapegoat. And i leaned. I really learned into that role very much. So so i see this lady of meeting a week later. And i up her. And i was like i heard you share. I read this book. It's amazing and she looks at me and she goes andrea. This is not something that you're going to be able to fix in a few months. She said this will take you. Years is a really important message right here because people believe they're gonna fix complex phenomena like this by reading a book i did the the the book is sort of. I don't even think as a roadmap is just an ex. It just a description of why you need to go to war. There's work to be done. Here's why here's the work that good but it's going to be about but the work is interpersonal. And it's experiential includes specific trauma therapies to exactly so when she says to me i go years. I'm like thinking lady. I need to have had this fixed yesterday or at least a few months. I'm almost thirty. I don't have time. And i really just hope to myself that her childhood had been a lot more fucked up than had been so. I thought i thought i've read this book. I'll take a year off from dating and that should surely suffice. Something well it didn't do shit right. Didn't doing work during the time. I did not not what it needed to be done again is that i always like to blame. Put blame at the foot of the medical provider. Because somebody i feel like somebody should grabbed you and put you in some kind of treatment. So yeah so. Did you have crappy treatment during that time again. I'm very crappy. I mean sort of not getting to the real yeah. We weren't doing trauma late. Weren't doing no i don't. I don't know somebody

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