Family Alcoholism – Myself and Father – Healing the Split Personality and Relationship

Family Alcoholism dream is about the relationship between my father and myself. With my father’s alcoholism and rage, I developed a split or dissociated personality and eventually became an alcoholic / addict myself. Alcoholism can take the family for a wild ride as this dream depicts. Also, a healing can take place when sobriety is attained. I found psychoanalytic therapy and dream work helpful in moving beyond impasses created by family alcoholism.

Picture above is three Australian soldiers in Chateau Wood during 3rd Battle of Ypres 1917, taken by Frank Hurley. This credit was reported by Mark Morey from Canberra, Australia.

This is a dream from June 27, 2014 465

The Dream – Family Alcoholism

I am in a new Ultra-modern house and there is a monorail that runs through the house in what appears to be the living room and apparently I was sitting on a monorail seat with my father and we are surprised when the monorail takes off, apparently our living room was a station stop on the rail system. We were just sitting there talking and expected the train to stay stationary, apparently, we thought it only moved when we wanted it to and that the purpose was just for sitting in our living room. Either way, we were shocked that the monorail took off. We didn’t know where we are going and the monorail takes us to the next stop which seems like it was several miles away. When we got off we were complaining to somebody at the station that we didn’t know it would take off, as if it shouldn’t have done that without our permission.

My Father Wanders Off

Suddenly, my father takes off and he gets ahead of me and I’m trying to catch up with him. I have to move ahead in the line and some black people that were in line were resentful because I was trying to get ahead of them. I am trying to explain that my father had gotten ahead of me and he really couldn’t take care of himself. Then he got on the train ahead of me before I could reach him.

The conductors were stopping people from getting on and I was still on the platform. Once again, I had to explain my father was on the train and couldn’t take care of himself, that I had to get on that train. And, once again, the people didn’t seem to like the fact that I was trying to get ahead of them, but the conductor let me on.

I finally caught up with my father and I sat across from him and I remember in the dream I cared for him (there wasn’t all the animosity or hatred that I felt – the not knowing what to say when we ran into each other – the awkwardness) I had the feelings that I was supposed to be taking care of him, like the feelings I had when I took care of my mother at the end of her life.

Desolation and the Ravine – followed by sense of ‘Awe’

We got off the train somewhere way out in the desert. It was desolate, there wasn’t anything around there, no people, buildings, roads, absolutely barren. There were some rocky mountainous areas and we found our way to the back of this small mountain where the earth has been split open.

A wide ravine had formed which I assumed had been cause by an earthquake. We are able to follow the split in a straight line up until it ended. The point where the split ended and the earth came back together, this was supposed to be an ‘amazing discovery’ or revelation that was some long sought after mystery. A sense of ‘awe’ or elation came over me.

We were both on foot and nobody seemed to have any problems walking this great distance. We were hiking out of this desert at a fairly fast pace. (My dad had many medical problems and could hardly walk the last 10 years of his life – he passed away in 1998) It was a group of people now and we were heading back towards the house where we started our journey.

Upon Waking, Amused at Scenario

We were talking about the beginning of the dream when we were shocked at the monorail taking off. Than, I started to wake up, I was still half in the dream, I just had the thought of “What else would a monorail do?” Did we think that the monorail was just going to stay there and not move?” It is a form of transportation, of course, it would move! Then it all seemed so ridiculous from that standpoint – how could we have been so stupid? So, as I regained consciousness, I became aware of the humorous nature of that metaphor in the dream.

Family Alcoholism

Psychoanalytic Dream Interpretation: Family Alcoholism

Maybe monorail is—- alcoholism –it took off when we didn’t even think it could move, and it took us far beyond where we intended to go — you always think you can control things in the beginning -and have no idea or are completely shocked when we end up in some very strange circumstances.

Monorail could also be psychotherapy because we both got into that not knowing where it was going. Also, it could have been Alcoholics Anonymous – both psychotherapy and AA helped heal the split personality. And, the monorail could also be the dream itself which carried me to the resolution of the split with my father and the split of my spirit from the remainder of my being.

Alcoholic Thinking

1) Thought monorail was our private system – delusional thinking that accompanies addictions/alcoholism.

Family Alcoholism – What Monorail?

2) Monorail running through house – could be like the elephant in the living room analogy to having alcoholism in the family. Everyone tries for a while to pretend the alcoholism doesn’t exist.


3) Shocked that it took off – no control – the ‘powerlessness’ that we experience when we become trapped in the throes of alcohol and other addictions.

Going Where the Wind Blew Us

4) Didn’t know where we were going – both my father and I were alcoholics, I was also an addict, we both went into psychotherapy first and 10 years later I went to AA. My being sober impressed my father, so, he started to go. We both got on a combination of trains; alcoholism, psychotherapy, and AA – not knowing where any of these would take us. When I first went to AA, I thought they would show me how to drink and use drugs on weekends only – they put me on a different track. (1980)

Feeling Resentment of Others

5) People upset about me cutting in line – Social Security – I was placed on Social Security early due to ‘mental disability’. Quite a few people seem resentful that I was granted that status, but it was well deserved. Many people seem to think it wasn’t real – that I was faking something. Let me assure you, it is real. When I went to the social security office to file, a county social services person went with me – I was treated very rudely by the SS employee, he insulted me several times. The county social services person was new to his job, but he commented later that the SS employee was way out of line, that he was rude and condescending because it was a mental disorder and probably because of my race.

Forgiveness is Difficult

6) The conductor might be the self-help portion of the subconscious that has made the decision to allow this material to be passed to the conscious level to allow the healing to take place. The conductor lets me on board to be joined with my father to bring our relationship to some sort of peace. He has been dead for 15 years and finally I am ready to let go of the anger and hostility I have been holding onto for close to 56 years of my 61 years. According to this timeline, I have to live until I am 120, so I can forgive all the other bastards that have pissed me off.

Discomfort of Dad’s Presence was Gone – Family Alcoholism

7) Sitting comfortably next to father – comfortable in own skin – the hatred, animosity, and awkwardness were gone. When I ran into my father in the house growing up, I never knew what to say. Was he going to be angry, was he going to talk about committing suicide again or fly into a rage because he doesn’t like your opinion on an issue? Maybe he did commit the murder – the one committed not too far from our house across from the bar he used to hang out at frequently – Maybe ? You just never knew!

Anger Dissipates – Family Alcoholism

8) Did not feel the hatred and self-hatred – I was comfortable with him on the monorail and felt like I should take care of him. I helped take care of my mother the last few years of her life, but I always had a good relationship with her. She was a person I could always count on – and I wanted to help her, but I never felt this way toward my father when he was alive.

Emotional Desolation of Family Alcoholism

9) Desert area, barren – lack of feelings, no emotion, my affect was off. “Emotional desolation” would be a good description for the relationship between my father and myself. I felt nothing when he died, I would not miss him – was not sorry to have him gone – he was never there for us and when he was there, you didn’t want to be there.

Dream Interpretation |Emotional Desolation is a good term for the effect of alcoholism on the family. Alcoholism kills the spirit of those around it.

The effects of ’emotional desolation’ on one’s soul or spirit would probably look like this, if it could be witnessed. Drugs and Alcohol create ’emotional desolation’ between the users and their alleged ‘loved ones’. No Man’s Land – 1917 – Photo by Jack Hurley

Mountains to Cross – Family Alcoholism

10) Mountain – barrier or something to overcome or struggle with – getting over all this wreckage was a struggle. It was ‘fucked up’. But he had a ‘fucked up’ life himself. His father was an alcoholic that used to make fun of him because my father played the piano, and his father did not consider this a manly endeavor. At 19, instead of heading to a therapist like I was fortunate enough to do, he was invited to be in Patton’s 3rd Army and fought in several engagements, including the “Battle of the Bulge”, walked through a concentration camp shortly after its liberation and took part in the decimation of a German town to find out there were only women and children there as the walk through the town afterwards.

Gap between Father and Son – Family Alcoholism

11) Split in the earth – split in my relationship with my father, and my own spirit from my body. My father’s uncontrollable rage often led to undeserved beatings or slaps across the face, sometimes for the error of asking for help at the wrong time or showing vulnerability – big mistakes at our house.

Rage Created Gap – Family Alcoholism

12) Earthquake – is the rage that caused the split. I was 5 when I received my baptism to his rage – I gave him the wrong reason why I wanted to learn how to play the piano. I told him “so I could make money like he did on weekends” and he lost his mind – complete rage attack – I never touched the piano again. (See piano incident at end for better understanding.)

Healing Family Alcoholism

13) Split coming together – healing, split personality re-merging –

The split in the earth can be seen as the split in my personality where the emotional and spiritual part of myself became disconnected from my physical body. This causes ones ‘affect’ to be off. When this happens, people do not display the normal appropriate emotions when exposed to various situations – like sadness at the news of your father’s death. And, it could simultaneously represent the rift in the father-son relationship since we are together when we find it.

The earth comes together because the split is healing on both levels. I am healing by letting go of the past (father died in 1998). The “amazing discovery’ is that I was able to heal this wound. (Percival and the Holy Grail). Recently, while working on this issue, I was able to see myself about 5 minutes before the piano incident. I could see myself in the mirror walking down the stairs – somewhat confident I would be a great pianist. I was full of hope and promise. This memory was tucked away in my subconscious for 56 years – the last time I recall seeing that image was right before my father’s first rage attack directly aimed at me.

This memory shows how long a memory can be stored waiting for the right moment to come back. Waiting to be reintegrated with the self when the time was right.

But now, 56 years later I am accomplishing the building of this website and the posting of these dreams. A couple of therapists have told me that my dream work is incredible – that I am gifted. One of them worked for a professor as a student whose specialty was dreams work, so I assume her opinion is well founded.

I feel accomplished in doing this work and creating a website for it. And, it is an ‘amazing discovery’, one which I made with my father – through the rage, the alcoholism, and addiction, the recovery through Alcoholics Anonymous and psychotherapy. We had no idea of where we were heading on these trips – they just took off. And in the end, I was able to come to a resolution of the conflict and heal the split with my father and my internal conflict so that my spirit and body are beginning to reunite and I can be whole again. Hope and promise have come back into my life and perhaps my ‘affect’ will begin to match the emotions that I experience. And the monorail took me to this place also. Perhaps the dream itself is the monorail – it is the vehicle that took me to this destination.

Dream Interpretation |Monorail represents alcoholism - similar to the metaphor of an elephant in the living room for alcoholism.

Turned out to be a pretty convenient monorail system, every alcoholic house should have one. I, also, now believe we both had Asperger’s Syndrome or were high functioning autistics.

End of Interpretation.


Piano Incident:

When I was five years old, I wanted to learn how to play the piano – my father was an excellent jazz/swing band pianist and my mother would always comment on how lucky we were because dad could make extra money on the weekends. I remember this clearly before we began the lesson my father asked me why I wanted to learn how to play – mind you, I was five – and I answered, “so I could make extra money on weekends”. My father flew into a complete rage yelling that “music was an art form and earning money should not be associated with it”. My mother had to force him out onto the porch to separate us – and the rage continued out on the porch with him still raging and screaming in front of the entire neighborhood.

Of course, I never touched the piano again and always had guilt feeling associated with making money – which is why I probably never defended myself as money was stolen from me by my bosses. Money was evil or bad and should never be the goal of anything – such a belief makes success in life extremely difficult. (My father had a serious case of PTSD from heavy action in WWII which in those days went untreated – except for drinking all the alcohol one could consume – his rage was always an instant away.)

Making the money playing the piano was not even the real reason – I just wanted to be able to play like him – but being five, I did not know how to express that – but I can remember listening to him and wanting to play like that – but not after that incident. So, the bad guy in the chair (boss or dad) may be that part of myself – the tapes that play in my head – that it is not okay to make money off of an art or gifted resource – which interpreting my dreams could be considered. So, I feel like I have to steal it or someone else will try to claim it.

End of Interpretation

Copyright @ Very Cool Dreams Company September 10, 2011

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