PAHS Student Speaks Out On Alcoholic Parent


As many as 76 million Americans have been exposed to irresponsible, excessive alcoholic behaviors in their family as children. In our own community today, children still face this dilemma. A Pottsville Area High School student was brave enough to share her own story. 

She was only two years old when her father started neglecting her for alcohol. “I remember standing in my crib, crying because I haven’t been fed. After slamming the door just to ignore me, I could only imagine the alcohol was more important.”

Alcoholics can be a selfish, but her father tried to hide his selfishness behind a smile. He was playing a part- the part of a loving, caring father. Even if he left his daughter alone in her room, with no one to take care of her, no one to rely on, he still convinced her that he was the father she deserved. The father she needed.

What do you do to get closure?

Do you say what you’ve always wanted it to say? Do you ask what you’ve always wanted to know? Do you try to get closure, or do you avoid it? Bury it deep down and pretend nothing happened- pretend everything is fine.

Closure can be hard to achieve, hard to realize. We don’t realize we need it until it’s too late- we try to ignore the emptiness and fill up the hole ourselves. Finding closure can be isolating. You walk down the road alone.

For me, and others, we find closure within ourselves. We walk down the road alone, and we drag it with us, and then, we leave it somewhere. We bury it.

We write it down.

Writing is one of the oldest ways we express ourselves. We’ve always been writing- writing poems and letters, speeches and stories. Writing about your feelings can either be the easiest thing in the world or an uphill battle- even if you’re only writing to yourself, it hurts to understand what you’re really feeling, what you’ve been wanting to express. It’s a message in a bottle that you’ve thrown out into the sea. It’s almost as if you’re writing a letter you’re never going to send, whether the letter is to your former best friend, your ex, or someone who you never said goodbye to.

Or maybe the letter is to yourself.

Writing helped a student here find her way to closure, holding her hand as she walked down the road. Writing has helped her find a way to express herself and find closure from the past problems and traumas she experienced from an abusive relationship with her alcoholic father.

We have all gone through something difficult, something traumatic. You could argue and say trauma is a part of life. But how do we let that trauma affect us? Do we grow, do we move on from it? Do we not talk about it- do we not give ourselves the closure we all deserve?

After you read this story, think about yourself, and that about that word- closure. How can you help yourself find it? Can you write? Can you express it? Can you speak it? Just get it off your chest?

 And do you give others closure? Apologize to the friend you got into an argument with yesterday. Think about your actions, about what you do and what you say. We don’t always know when we’re in the wrong.

Everyone deserves closure. Everyone has their own way to find it, this was hers.

An excerpt from “Truth”

by an anonymous Pottsville Area High School student 

I would wake up the next morning to you laying a kiss on my forehead, the stench of

alcohol no longer emanating from your breath as you whispered an I love you before

leaving for work. I would lay under the soft, warm comfort of my blanket as I heard your

footsteps become silent as they went on. The only mark left from your presence being the

angry handprint on my face and the cold chill left in the air. I had convinced myself of

your love and care. Though my chest still ached as my hands shook mercilessly, I still

chose to believe that you were part of my fairytale. My knight in shining armor.