We heard Bella’s car roar up the drive, we heard her key in the lock; we were listening.

‘So?’ we asked, in unison.

She sat on the floor by my side, deflated. Up-to-date news came our way. The jig was up. Boyfriend apologised in a way that only a cheat can: didn’t know why he did it, no excuse, women pestered him, alcohol turned him into Lothario.

She asked him to come with her, to sack off the wedding, and move into their house. Put this issue behind them.

His mother intervened; she waded in. Bella cried, asked for Boyfriend to join her in leaving. Mother said No.

Mother won–the boy was hers. Good luck to her, God bless, and Amen! Good bloody riddance.

Wedding arrangements were cancelled. Telephone calls were made. Conversation and shared tears with our family and friends.

The boyfriend did not contact Bella again.

She was bereft. My heart broke for my daughter into a thousand tiny pieces, and would never be whole again.

Bella threw out keepsakes, cleared her bottom drawer–items she had collected for her new life as a married woman.

So was this the turning point? Did this experience turn my daughter into a full-blown alcoholic?

It was a rung or two up the ladder, but no, far more damaging, was a relationship to follow.

She had been abandoned–tossed aside without care, and that mattered.

Her self-esteem was torn.

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I am the mother of two adult daughters, both much loved and cared for. The eldest thought she could handle social drinking and party drugs, she could not. There is a journey addicts relate to - their journey. As a mother I have healed through the written word. This is my journey.

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