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Alanon

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Somber posted 12/6/2019 17:00 PM

Ellie,
Sorry you suffered through that. My best friends Mom was an alcoholic and I saw the pain that caused her as well. I donít want that for my children. Sometimes, I think it is best to stay so that I can always be here if he decides to drink in their company...itís a tough call!!!
Detachment is very difficult, although I do understand what you are saying.

The detachment point I think is just where that scale finally tips. Where staying in it is intolerable, no matter how much leaving it hurts

Yes this makes sense. Iím not at the drop the rope moment but getting closer every day. I do know that I am not capable of going backwards anymore. The calmness, routine and predictability of the days ahead was thoroughly enjoyed by me while he was in rehab. I didnít realize how much I was walking on egg shells or living in his addictive shadow ignoring my feelings, hopes and dreams. I also didnít realize how much I neglected attention to my children while instead giving it all to him or the pain he caused along the way. I will not go backwards, so certainly if things head that way I must leave for my own sanity!!!
I fear how this affects our children and that scale is also tipping. Where I once thought it was always best to mend the marriage and stay together for the children, I am now seeing the damage that can be done and then prevented if we separate. I daydream of the predictable, routine, fun and free of stress household I could provide on my own.

The bartender and the establishment can be held liable for anything that the drunk person does while driving.

This is no longer true where I live anyways as per a recent conversation with a police officer friend of mine. The adult drinking is solely responsible.
I feel I would have to stop him from drinking and driving for the safety of himself and others. At the same time, I have two children to parent and I am not interested in parenting my spouse.
Yesterday, he was heading out to poker and I had thought he was drinking. I addressed it before he left, asking him if he thinks he should be driving. He claims he was sober and that it was a problem if I couldnít tell between him being sober or drunk. I stated that he was definitely not sober as I can tell his mood and demeanour are not his normal. He then admits to smoking a joint a while ago and was fine. I had to let him go, I couldnít be bothered arguing if he was sober enough or not...itís hard to tell sometimes. I told him I wasnít going to parent him, that he was an adult and if he felt he was making a responsible decision then that was on him.
I felt guilty after he left in case he shouldnít be driving...I really couldnít tell. He often seems to have it all under control Ďfunctionalí addict part...
If needed, sure I could report him. It would be extra embarrassing as he knows most officers in our city but yep it needed I would.

EllieKMAS posted 12/6/2019 22:15 PM

that it was a problem if I couldnít tell between him being sober or drunk.

Well to be fair... That says a lot about who he is if he is an asshole sober OR drunk.

Somber - I didn't tell you my story for sympathy. I am one of the lucky ones! Most aren't but my mom is a fuckin AA unicorn. She walked in there and has never looked back and never touched a drop since. She amazes me.

But the hardest part of loving an addict is that there is nothing you can do to 'snap them out of it'. You did not cause it, you cannot control it, and you cannot cure it. I know how hard it is to internalize that - SO hard. But you must. The sooner you do, the sooner you can break free of the sickness. Because make no mistake - alcoholism is a family disease and it leaves no one unscathed. I remember that well. I remember how hopeless and helpless it makes you feel. How it feels like nothing will ever make it get better.

If he chooses sobriety, then it can. But he isn't choosing that and from you have said probably won't - that is heartbreaking but it is the reality. You and your sweet kiddos do not have to be collateral damage in his battle with his demons. You and them deserve the peace that comes from a life away from addiction.

My thoughts are sure with you. I empathize more than you know!

cocoplus5nuts posted 12/7/2019 09:08 AM

I had to let him go

Right. You can't physically stop him from driving. You can report a possibly intoxicated driver to the police. They can pull him over and assess the situation. He admitted to smoking a joint, so it was more than just a suspicion on your part.

DevastatedDee posted 12/11/2019 15:57 PM

I remember going to Alanon and Naranon after my XWH came home high on crack. The first time I went, I listened to everyone's stories and just wept with despair that the life I thought I had was over and that the man I married was gone. This was pre-DDay. The second time, I really heard them. I believed them. I completely believed that I couldn't do anything to help him. The part that hurt so much was that the obvious solution was to remove myself and my kids from being around him and give him the opportunity to hit bottom, so I kicked him out and changed the locks. I never did achieve detaching with love. I detached with self-preservation. After his post DDay relapse, it was with rage and self-preservation. I think detaching with love is a beautiful idea, though. It sounds more peaceful.

None of it is easy. I am so sorry any of us have ever felt the need for Alanon. Living with an addict of any sort is really hard.

It sucks.

Somber posted 12/14/2019 10:17 AM

I completely believed that I couldn't do anything to help him.

Iím not there yet but getting closer. Detaching with self preservation is a healthy choice.
I see the slippery slope we are on right now and I am feeling so helpless. I picked the kids up after school yesterday, gone maybe 30 minutes, I come home and half a bottle of wine is gone and partially hidden on the counter. The night before he asked if I wanted a glass of wine, I declined. He asked if I minded if he did, I said I know your drinking and hiding booze, itís completely on you if you decide to drink but I want no part of it. At the same time he claims he didnít drink for a few days, like that is suppose to be good enough.
Then he says my support would be nice to help him quit vaping (a new habit since rehab). My support, the nerve of him! All the support and kindness I have shown him is so
Flippin invisible to him! It hurts like hell to be so invisible! He has had all the support I could possible give. Iím done!
I hate living with addictions, it is a helpless, lonely, unpredictable environment and I canít stand it anymore!!!

Somber posted 12/14/2019 10:29 AM

You and your sweet kiddos do not have to be collateral damage

And this...yes very true! I haven often said that I feel like the casualty in his war against himself. I also am drawn into his victim playing when things go wrong. I end up feeling bad for him and his childhood. I am learning that he is an adult and he has choices as an adult and can be in control of his behaviour. Whereas, a child he wasnít in control. I guess I mean that I am learning that child abuse of any kind is no longer an acceptable excuse for his mistreatment of me (SA behaviours, manipulation, gaslighting, emotional abuse, etc.)

cocoplus5nuts posted 12/15/2019 07:42 AM

Have you looked into codependence for yourself? A lot of people caught up in a lived one's addiction are CoD.

Somber posted 12/15/2019 08:45 AM

Oh the codependency. Yes I have looked into this, read much about it. And although I see traits that would apply to myself, I also see the symptoms of trauma as well. My psychotherapist has told me to Ďf*ck the codependency modelí and we are focusing for now on the betrayal trauma and its affects. I appear to be a master at the coping mechanism of compartmentalization. I smile while talking about the absolute worst behaviours I have endured in childhood and my marriage. I donít remember the last time I allowed myself to truly feel and cry about all that has happened. The SA behaviours certainly have destroyed me and my sense of security which had nothing to do with codependency. The double life lived without my knowledge also had nothing to do with codependency. The alcoholic behaviours well maybe I see more of those traits there...it all fits for sure!!
For now we are focusing on processing the mountain of pain that I have never allowed myself to truly feel.

[This message edited by Somber at 8:49 AM, December 15th (Sunday)]

DevastatedDee posted 12/16/2019 16:24 PM

I also am drawn into his victim playing when things go wrong. I end up feeling bad for him and his childhood.

When this happens, try and remember that you have as much to victim play about as he does and most of it may be directly because of him.

Somber posted 12/16/2019 18:41 PM

Thank you, that way of thinking is so helpful right now! You have no idea how much that even helps. I can totally victim play after all the hurt he has caused...I just donít get a chance as he takes over that role each and every time!!!

josiep posted 12/16/2019 19:00 PM

Thank you. I suppose I feel guilt giving up on him. At the same time, I feel a greater pull to take care of myself. The fear of things staying the same is greater than the fear of change.

To detach with love requires one to understand that he's not an alcoholic because he drinks too much but he drinks too much because he's an alcoholic.

He's a suffering man. He's fighting demons every single day. If he doesn't drink, he feels horrible. If he does drink, he feels horrible. There's no shame in loving a person who suffers this.

But there's nothing you can do to help them. It's their problem to solve and theirs alone. All you can do is love them and let them solve their problem. Don't enable them. Don't demonize them. Don't coddle them.

When he drinks, you refuse to ride with him, you refuse to let the kids in the car with him, etc. But you can say it calmly "Honey, I'm sorry but you've been drinking so I don't think it's a good idea for you to drive and I will not ride in the car with you right now. Ask me again when you're sober cuz I'd love to go with you."

I hope this helps. It's hard, I know. Extremely hard.

cocoplus5nuts posted 12/17/2019 07:16 AM

I donít remember the last time I allowed myself to truly feel and cry about all that has happened.


Man, do I know how that works! We touched on a couple of things in therapy yesterday that started to feel uncomfortable for me. I quickly shut down those emotions. I cannot show weakness by crying. Ugh! I wish I could cry!

Does your therapist think the guilt you feel is part of your trauma brain? I have a really hard time understanding why people feel guilty when someone else is being an asshole. And, yes, I see playing the victim as being an asshole. It's a deliberate form of manipulation. He knows you'll feel guilty and maybe rugsweep. That's why he does it. That's why I was thinking CoD.

Somber posted 12/17/2019 11:52 AM

Josiep, yes thank you, Your perspective and advice helps, it all helps!

To detach with love requires one to understand that he's not an alcoholic because he drinks too much but he drinks too much because he's an alcoholic.

This makes a lot of simple sense. I empathize with his struggles and am trying to detach from it. Sometimes, detaching feels like Iím ignoring the problem. But more so I am trying to not be consumed by his problem.

Somber posted 12/17/2019 11:58 AM

And, yes, I see playing the victim as being an asshole. It's a deliberate form of manipulation. He knows you'll feel guilty and maybe rugsweep. That's why he does it. That's why I was thinking CoD.

Coco, I never saw it like this before. I appreciate challenging point of views, itís helpful and provides clarity to such a cloudy situation! Your right, over time I have responded this way so it has become an expectation. That is why he does it.
The guilt I feel has not yet come up in therapy but it will next time now lol

I quickly shut down emotions too, I have done so since a very young age. It has become the norm for me and has allowed the ease of compartmentalizing. I have stuffed so much pain in the subconscious box that I physically feel the negative effects of it, I feel those tears bubbling up but still wonít let it out...may we both have a big ol cry sometime soon to let some of it out!!!

cocoplus5nuts posted 12/17/2019 16:25 PM

My sister is very good at playing the victim. Everything that happens is someone else's fault. She won't take personal responsibility for anything. That has landed her in a situation where she will most likely be homeless within a year. Last time I saw her she totally freaked out. She wanted me to save her. I said, "I don't know what you can do. Call a realtor and a lawyer, I guess." And, I left.

Some people think I'm cold for doing that. She's 45 years old and she's not stupid. She is capable of getting things done. I've watched her spend her whole life expecting everyone else to take care of her while she acts like a selfish brat. She had my mom scared of her with her explosive anger. I'm not doing it! I don't feel one bit of guilt about that, either.

josiep posted 12/19/2019 08:06 AM

This makes a lot of simple sense. I empathize with his struggles and am trying to detach from it. Sometimes, detaching feels like Iím ignoring the problem. But more so I am trying to not be consumed by his problem.

Talking this over with someone at an AlAnon meeting (there are online meetings also) would really help. Detaching doesn't mean ignoring, it just means understanding that it's not your problem to solve and giving him the dignity of believing he's capable of solving his own problem. Although it seems the opposite, every time you try to "fix" or help him, it sends the message that you don't think he can fix it without your help.

It's tricky, I know. And I do get it but I'm struggling for the words to explain it.

For instance, you're invited to a party. He stops at the bar after work and doesn't get home in time. You leave a nice note on the counter and go to the party without him. "Dear DH, sorry you couldn't make the party. There's a can of chicken noodle soup in the pantry. I'll see you when I get home. Have a good night. Love you, XXX"

cocoplus5nuts posted 12/19/2019 08:14 AM

Do you have a sponsor?

Somber posted 1/7/2020 09:47 AM

Hey,

I donít have a sponsor. I havenít been to alanon for a couple months now. I became resentful towards my husband for needing to go and spend my free time doing so.
Now I am no further ahead so perhaps need it for me and my healing. A sponsor would be so helpful right about now. I feel so lost and hopeless.

I am still trying to detach but to me it feels like ignoring the problem. I donít comment on his drinking, Iíve come to ignore it but it is slowing snowballing into more and more. I am wracking my brain on how to deal with it. An ultimatum is pointless, itís been done. He can white knuckle for as long as I give a timeline for and it slowly starts up again.

Josiep, your explanation of detaching does help. It is still hard to wrap my head around how I respond or not respond.
Sometimes I feel more direct and other times more dismissive of his behaviour.

We go away for a vacation Thursday to an all inclusive which has my anxiety through the roof. He booked it as a surprise after I said it was a bad idea and said no to booking a family trip. He then planned to just take the kids and weíll that canít happen. So here we are getting ready for a family vacation that is suppose to be a joyful time but his drinking will ruin it Iím sure!!!

Somber posted 1/7/2020 09:47 AM


[This message edited by Somber at 10:11 AM, January 7th (Tuesday)]

cocoplus5nuts posted 1/9/2020 08:45 AM

My fch made all his progress with a sponsor. We moved about 2 years ago. He hasn't found a new sponsor and had been stuck since. Good sponsors can make all the difference. I understand the resentment of having to do that shit. My therapist is gently trying to nudge me to do some work with my fch that I am resisting because I am resentful that I am the one who has to do it.

As to the trip, you can have a good time in spite of your H. Do fun things with the kids. Do things for yourself. Don't worry about your H.

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