I feel like such a big part of my identity is wrapped up in my dad being an alcoholic. Let me stress that I have never used my dad being an alcoholic as an excuse for my own bad behavior, but rather that I have been a “child of an alcoholic” for over 20 years. Then very abruptly, my father stopped drinking- something that I never anticipated and still have a hard time believing. Even though he has been sober for a couple of months, I am still a child of an alcoholic and that hasn’t changed. Don’t get me wrong- I couldn’t be happier that he isn’t drinking (he had a stroke in October that I think scared him straight), but just because he is not presently drinking does not just make all of the years of abuse disappear. My mom thinks that he does not really remember the terrible things that he has done while he was drunk (which was every day), but we all do. I remember. I haven’t quite figured how to reconcile the old image of my dad and the new one and how my father’s newfound sobriety affects me. I am not being harassed by his drunk phone calls every day and am no longer receiving two to three crazy, nasty emails every day (can’t complain about that!), but that doesn’t erase all of the belligerent voicemails on my phone or mean emails in my inbox from the past 15 years. Am I just supposed to forget everything and have a magical “fresh start” with my dad?