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Core Lesson 2

Expectations ~ Delayed Emotional Growth ~ Surrender

Those who battle addictions often wrestle with the additional disadvantage of delayed emotional growth (DEG.) They mature physically and intellectually but emotionally their behaviors indicate that they have difficulty handling the normal stress and responsibilities of adulthood. Causes that factor into DEG include trauma, substance abuse, genetic predisposition and environmental influence. With the abuse of alcohol or drugs during developmental years (childhood through mid twenties) many addicts or alcoholics struggle greatly with DEG behaviors. Soon life skills suffer.  (ie. managing time, handling money, dealing with stress, awareness of relationship boundaries, etc.)

A few behaviors of those with delayed

emotional growth may include:

  • poor decision  making skills

  • need for instant gratification

  • unable to handle money

  • limited or lack of  empathy

  • habitual lies and deception

  • disregards other people's needs

  • difficulty managing moods

  • difficulty controlling impulse

How does the impact of DEG alter family dynamics? Generally, spouses or parents get frustrated and start treating their loved ones like children instead of adults. Families compensate by taking on responsibilities of their adult loved one. A wife begins parenting her spouse to handle his issues of bouncing checks. Grandpa alters his work day to drive his grandson to weekly appointments with a probation officer since Jr is inconvenienced by the bus schedule.

Manipulation and resentment soon

become key factors in the relationship.

"I hate calls after midnight. My daughter is usually on the other end of the line with another crisis. Stranded at a concert. Out of money. Abandoned by "friend" at bar on far side of town. Out of gas. My wife rolls over and goes back to sleep ~ but dads need to take care of their little girls.  I get directions, grab my key and head out the door.  I never know what to expect until I arrive. Sometimes she's frustrated that it took me too long driving there - or upset because she's lost her phone and needs me to help find it. There are times when several friends pile in and I feel like an Uber driver  - but with no pay. I've had to pick her up from various places because she's passed out or meet her at an ER to help her get medical care. My daughter seldom has ID. Her purse gets stolen a lot. I probably should give her money for a new purse next week when we celebrate her 28th birthday." 

                                                                                                                                                      ~ A dad's thoughts ~

Okay ~ this is worth repeating:

"Generally, spouses or parents  get frustrated and start

treating their loved ones like children instead of adults.

Families compensate by taking on responsibilities of their adult loved ones."

What does surrender look like?  Download the lesson.

We are empowered when we yield this struggle to God and

can get a hold of the fact that  victory is already won.

Read more from the entire lesson.

What does it look like when we  

"let go and let God" in every day life?