Date: April 23, 2016 01:32PM
Going from a large, chaotic home ran by an alcoholic father, to the peace and organization you wished to create is a big change, and no matter how welcome, change can be painful.
I am an adult child of an alcoholic, and an introvert. In my family of origin, every day was an unpredictable mess (four kids). My dysfunctional role was to be the peacemaker, cook, cleaner, whatever was needed when it was needed. I parented my younger siblings.
I got out. I live alone. It is too quiet sometimes, but the hardest part of learning to live free was that no one knew me - I had to start from scratch with everyone, but in the meantime, there was no fallback position, no one who knew my character, my intent. As an introvert, like you said, I can be sparce with words face-to-face, and without the history, I'm often viewed as strangely quiet.
It was lonely at first, and sometimes still can be, but not too often. I prefer what I prefer, am who I am, and don't want a constant companion obligating me out of my solitude. I interact at work, with neighbors when I want, and see friends occasionally. I just don't want to be part of a tribe.
You are comparing your unmarried age of 26 to TBMs, not to the free world. 26 is young, and you are not obligated to people your life before you are ready for a lifetime committment to any kids, for the sake of the LDS. There is plenty of time for marriage and kids, if you meet someone you don't want to live without.
The crying is the result of the time, space and safety you have created in your own life. Memories surface, and you are experiencing and expelling negative* emotions you were never allowed as a young person. Anger, pain and sorrow that had to be squelched, to parent your siblings and make peace. It wasn't your job, you were too young and inexperienced to handle it, but you did what needed doing to the best of your ability. It left little time for self-indulgence, self-discovery. Negative* feelings are toxic if not dealt with, and they didn't just vanish. They were suppressed, and now you can express and expel them.
Your dad, and mine, are examples of men who dealt with those feelings by denying them. Doesn't work. Either the public face of strength and leadership, or the crumbling wrecks we knew/know them to be.
So welcome your tears. Honor them. Be glad that you have made a safe enough life to experience them. Beat a pillow with a raquet. Go out into the woods and howl your rage to the sky. Get rid of it.
Then, if you still want, be open to the possibility of a wife, and maybe kids. You have plenty of time.
Your siblings may choose lives of blindness, lives of suppression, but it is not your job to make or fix their choices. You are no longer parenting them, so you can let that go. It was never your job.
There are books, support groups, online info and forums for adult children of alcoholics. There is predictable damage to kids, and much help and hope for understanding and recovery.
It's good you are discussing it, good it is coming up. It doesn't have to be a life sentence.
*"negative" used for brevity. Feelings are not "bad" or "good." They just are.