X

Cookies on SurvivingInfidelity.com®

SurvivingInfidelity.com® uses cookies to enhance your visit to our website. This is a requirement for participants to login, post and use other features. Visitors may opt out, but the website will be less functional for you.

more information about cookies...

Return to Forum List

Return to Off Topic

SurvivingInfidelity.com® > Off Topic

You are not logged in. Login here or register.

Supporting an Addict

Somber posted 10/30/2020 13:35 PM

So this morning my spouse claims he is going to be sober. After a long talk with a friend at work he has chosen to stop drinking. He dumps a bottle of vodka out in front of me and looks pleased.

I wish I could be more supportive but instead I look unimpressed and say that I know that bottle was filled with water. He looks surprised but not shocked that I called him on this and said okay it was meant to be symbolic. There is no alcohol in the house now at all.

His response to my impassive neutral response is a comment that he wishes I could be more supportive about it. He is trying to make a positive change.

While this is true in some manner, Iíve been here before and the positive change is short term. Iím exhausted. I donít have it in me to be the supportive cheerleader...so what am I instead?

How can I be supportive? No matter the direction of our marriage, I would love to be supportive in helping him with his sobriety. It would be a gift to my children to have a sober father.

Maybe a back story needs more I be inserted here but he is and has been a functioning alcoholic for a long time. He has frequent binges which have lessened over the past year since being to rehab last spring.

Iím at a loss how to deal with the ever changing, unpredictable and helpless cycles of addiction.

TrustedHer posted 10/30/2020 14:29 PM

My son is an alcoholic.

I appreciate you wanting to help him. That's love.

But the fatigue is real. Sad to say, his recovery (or lack thereof) is not your problem to solve. It impacts you, but you can't control anything about it.

There's a little room for optimism in your statement "binges which have lessened over the past year since being to rehab last spring". While cold turkey is eventually the best option, a lot of addicts have to have some false starts down that road.

Are you getting help for yourself? Something like AlAnon or individual counseling? That might give you more tools to be supportive without endangering yourself.

The1stWife posted 10/31/2020 06:49 AM

Pretend to be supportive and encouraging. Yet knowing the reality of the situation.

Some people need ďway to goĒ type moments their whole life. Sadly. Even if itís for something inconsequential.

Just go with it. You know the truth.

MyTurnATL posted 10/31/2020 12:49 PM

Tell him you are glad he is making a positive change.

Then find an Al-Anon meeting, and start attending.

EllieKMAS posted 10/31/2020 13:22 PM

Unfortunately, him needing an atta-boy here tells me from my experience that he isn't destined to really get sober right now. Generally, people who are in the right mindset to get sober do so for themselves, not for accolade or notice from others.

The sad reality is that there is nothing you can do to help him. He has to decide on his own to get serious about it.

Somber posted 10/31/2020 14:51 PM

Trustedher,
The fatigue is real. Thanks for acknowledging that. Iím exhausted and feel very alone in that. My stress and anxiety is invisible to others (including my spouse) but Iím struggling too.
Perhaps there is a bit of optimism for sure. I see that and hang on to it. At the same time, I note the weed consumption likely increasing to stop drinking and that worries me. Although a mildly stoned spouse is easier to deal with I think.

Iíve done alanon and counseling intermittently over the past years. I am restarting therapy next week but itís online and Iím not a fan of that.

Pretend to be supportive and encouraging. Yet knowing the reality of the situation.
Tell him you are glad he is making a positive change.

Yes thanks. I should at least speak some of those supportive words.
him needing an atta-boy here tells me from my experience that he isn't destined to really get sober right now.

Perhaps but at least he is recognizing his problem this time on his own. Last time, I told him to move out or get sober...that was the push. Somehow over time, I just stopped pushing and left him to figure it out on his own. Kinda like roommates overall and as long as the kids are happy and safe, I havenít said too much. Maybe that indirectly enables him. I donít know. I do know that it is not in my control so Iíve just stopped trying to control it or comment on it. Iím trying to distance my self from his addictions but anyone here who lives with an addict knows that is very difficult. It consumes me and affects my daily moods too. So as much as I think Iím distancing myself from it, I am more likely ignoring it. Donít think that is really the same thing. One day at a time!

[This message edited by Somber at 2:53 PM, October 31st (Saturday)]

Lionne posted 11/1/2020 19:47 PM

Unfortunately, him needing an atta-boy here tells me from my experience that he isn't destined to really get sober right now. Generally, people who are in the right mindset to get sober do so for themselves, not for accolade or notice from others
.

Maybe but not necessarily. Sometimes the "higher power" becomes something more tangible to an addict in early recovery. In the beginning, my alcoholic son's higher power was the professional agency that was monitoring his sobriety. My H's higher power was our marriage and his desire to not end it. These kinds of perspective can serve to jump start recovery until there is a bit of regulation that comes back to the addicted brain.

Many addicts substitute another substance for the drug of choice, drinking copious amounts of coffee or chain smoking. One can argue that these two things still change brain chemistry but for some reason they are acceptable changes to the 12 step community.

Pot, eh. He is surely not staying sober while using this. He might be easier to deal with but he isn't doing the work to find out his inner motivations and to be able to take the steps to real recovery.

You probably are enabling him. It IS exhausting. And it's really not your job to help him or atta boy him. It's very likely that as soon as you dare mention the pot as a continuing source of the high, he'll probably accuse you of not being supportive, and say something to the effect of "why am I even trying when you don't appreciate all my efforts! I may as well get drunk!"

You would surely benefit from some support and advice from AlAnon. They can teach you how to detach with love and learn NOT to enable.

Right now, you are too exhausted to take any hard steps. I definitely get it. Instead, practice UBER self care, do some nice things for yourself, and concentrate on healing YOU.

It's so, so true. Ultimately he cannot do this to please (or get ego kibbles) from you. It just really, really has to come from him.

Living in a home with an active addict is soul crushing. I don't doubt all of you are feeling this trauma even if the kids aren't "told" about it, they know. And that dysfunction often carries into the next generation.

Get out of the addictive cycle as soon as you can, for yourself and your kids. But heal yourself first.

Somber posted 11/6/2020 13:06 PM

It's very likely that as soon as you dare mention the pot as a continuing source of the high, he'll probably accuse you of not being supportive, and say something to the effect of "why am I even trying when you don't appreciate all my efforts! I may as well get drunk!"

Yes I anticipate this so donít say much.

I didnít need to wait this long though...the last few days he has been struggling and taking clonazepam at night to help. I saw this and to tried to be supportive yesterday and sent him the Ďjust for todayí alanon quote after I left for work.
When I was home from work he was drunk, had the neighbours over and they had ordered pizza. Kids were playing with their kids. I was so annoyed. What I should have done is stated that this is a dry house right now and removed all the booze but even this thought is me trying to control something I canít. My spouses aunt has a new cancer diagnosis and isnít doing well so this was the news of the day that he used as an excuse to drink.

It is very frustrating, lonely and exhausting!
I know his struggle is real. My struggle is too. I felt myself on egg shells again because he is more defensive, argumentative and unpredictable when he is drinking, especially in excess.

Perhaps he will go back to trying to be sober, perhaps it will last longer or not... it is damn hard being on the other end though too!!

gmc94 posted 11/7/2020 10:22 AM

Just wanna say sorry you are dealing with this - it's rough.

I'm a big fan of al-anon, but the zoom meetings are not the same for me.

But if it's a dry house, it's a dry house.... that's your boundary and you'll need to come to terms with how you want to enforce it

people who are in the right mindset to get sober do so for themselves, not for accolade or notice from others
Amen to that!!!

Somber posted 11/8/2020 07:49 AM

Thank you.

A sober few days but with that comes a lot of moping and moodiness.
I have so much anger and resentment built up from years of disappointment and broken promises.I suppose I love him in some way still, otherwise why am I still here. I certainly donít love the horrible cycle of unknowns. I struggle with enabling vs. setting boundaries. I really donít know how to navigate this and Iím years into dealing with it. Perhaps Iím not strong enough; skilled or trained enough; etc. I think a lot of it has to do with not knowing whether I want to stay in this marriage or not. Iím not blind to some of the reasons I appear codependent.
In the reality of the day to day, I live; I care for my children; I work; I perform household duties; etc. Every day is filled with a never ending to do list much like most households. I donít have the luxury of time to always think ďam I enabling him right now?Ē ďShould I be enforcing this boundary right now?Ē Iím busy; itís always so busy with competing priorities that I act and carry on in the day without those deeper thoughts. I let him be him and try to be me. If he is moody, I avoid him
And do other things. If he is drinking, I avoid him and do other things, sometimes I express myself and he gets defensive. In the quiet sober moments, I enjoy the quieter predictable moments and donít say much. At the end of some days is when Iím like wtf, this is a mess or this day was okay or I should have said/done this...then I fall asleep and day to day life repeats.

I am not much for zoom alanon either...itís not the same.

Return to Forum List

Return to Off Topic

© 2002-2021 SurvivingInfidelity.com ®. All Rights Reserved.     Privacy Policy