Children Who Want Their Father to Quit DrinkingMany families may have faced the daily problem ofseeing their father being drunk and belligerent.Many families may have faced the daily problem of seeing their father being drunk and belligerent. Once drunk, the father yells at the neighbors, instigates fights with his wife, and beats his children. This aggravates everyone in the household. However, because of the love and gratitude that they have for their father, the children wish to find a way to help him quit drinking. Unfortunately, the children usually do not know what to do. Therefore, I would like to recommend a method I once used, and that worked for me, which may also be a practical guide to help point these fathers in the right direction.There was a student who approached Luang Phaw, seeking advice in helping his father to quit drinking, because every time his father was drunk he became violent and would yell at the neighbors. This made the student, and his mother, ashamed and afraid to go outside. This also caused the neighbors to look down on them and be unfriendly.These concerns drove him to seek counsel with Luang Phaw, whom he respected like his own father. The following advice was given in order to ease this student’s distress:It is unfortunate that your father is heavily addicted to alcohol. It would be easier to speak about this if it were someone other than your own father. Even before you can finish informing him of your concern, he will probably respond by telling you that you should not be telling him this, and that he has raised you since you were little, when you feet were as small as seashells.Luang Phaw went through this too. Even though I am a Bhikkhu and have taught a great number of people to quit drinking and smoking, it was still difficult when it came to my own family. I would return home and say, “Father, please stop drinking, so that your health can improve. You can use your time to listen to Dhamma, and to meditate.” Every time I mentioned this topic I would always get a negative response, but I never gave up.At that time, my father was seventy years old. I wanted him to chant, meditate and purify his mind, and I hoped that he would accrue as many merits as he could during the latter part of his life, so that he could take those merits with him to his future lives.How was I to respond if he replied like that? I spoke too harshly to him, I spoke too harshly to him, I would gain bad kamma since he was my father. I fI did not warn him, I would not be compensating him for giving me life. I struggled for years before finding a solution.Finally, I had to use ingenuity to solve this problem. I started by telling my mother not to purchase liquor for him. Since he was unable to bully my mother into buying it, he turned to my sister. Then, I asked my sister not to ppurchase alcohol for him. When he could not ask his children, he turned to his grandchildren. I then told the grandchildren not to buy and liquor for their grandfather. When the grandchildren refused to do as their grandfather had requested, he complained and scolded them, I to the grandchildren to endure for their grandfather’s sake.If you want to help your father quit drinking, you shouldpatiently seek a method that is suitable for him.As a last resort, my father then coerced his great grandchildren, who were seven and eight years old, to buy liquor for him. I had to guide and instruct the great grandchildren, using various methods.The process was like cutting down a tree. We cannot cut at the main root, but must first cut at the branch roots. The main root will eventually die, as its sources of nutrients are severed and eliminated.Eventually, my father was able to quit drinking because nobody would buy liquor for him, and the liquor store was too far from home for him to go for himself. We were very fortunate. My father passed away at the age of 86. He stopped drinking completely at the age of 80 so he was alcohol-free for only six years before he died.If you want to help your father quit drinking, you should patiently seek a method that is suitable for him. Don’t give up, not even for one day, and then you will find a way.Dear respectable readers, now that you have read up to this part, you should realize that it is a difficult task for children who want to help their father to quit drinking. When teaching adults, we need to make them think. In order to avoid adults, we need to make them think. In order to avoid embarrassment, we need to use wisdom to find a way that is appropriate to their personality. We must persevere so that we can lead them away from the unfortunate realms (Abhayabhumi).Even the Lord Buddha, once enlightened, did not immediately return to kapilavatthu City to give a Dhamma talk to his father. He realized that if that if he had done that, his father would not have listened. Instead, after his enlightenment, Lord Buddha first went to teach the people in the town of Magadha. He wished for his reputation to grow and reach his father, and to have others speak of his goodness. Once his reputation grew, he became confident that his father had complete trust in him.Even then, the Lord Buddha had to perform a miracle by walking in circles, walking in the air, and triggering a powerful Bokarapotta rain, Those people who wanted to get wet, did, and those who did not want to get wet, did not. It was a heavy rain storm.After his father and the royal family saw the miracle, they let go of their stubbornness, and demonstrated their respect by paying homage to the Lord Buddha. They listened and believed in the Lord Buddha. They listened and believed in his Dhamma, and some eventually attained enlightenment themselves.The moral of the Lord Buddha story is that, in order for children to be successful in helping their fathers quit drinking, they themselves must be wholesome, and they must be role models that people can respect. Let your father acknowledge that you are smart and proficient, so that he cannot look down upon you. Then, find an appropriate approach that is respectful of, and suitable for, him. If you succeed, you will also gain tremendous merit from helping him.
Children Who Want Their Father to Quit Drinking
Many families may have faced the daily problem of seeing their father being drunk and belligerent.Dhamma Articles > Meditation Articles and Techniques > Meditation for Peace
[ Apr 18th, 2012 ] - [ : 10843 ]