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Old 10-24-2010, 02:51 PM   #1 (permalink)
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I am having a really difficult time

I really hope there are some folks here that might be able to give me a little advice that gives me some relief, as I am really hurting.

I am a recovering alcoholic (10 months) and despite all the warnings from others in my program, I went ahead and got into a relationship with another newcomer. Perhaps I was completely blinded by her looks or I viewed it as an opportunity to truly open up and engage in an adult honest relationship. Either way, I jumped right in. Everything felt right. We were being honest with each other. Truthfully, I felt we were working our own individual programs, etc. For about 3 months, I grew closer to her than I had to any woman in my adult life (especially sober). Suffice to say, everything felt right.

About three weeks ago, I felt her somewhat pushing away. She was involved in some rather intensive trauma therapy, which brought out some serious resentments for the men in her life (especially her father). A little over a week ago, she made the decision to return home and visit her family and literally the day after she returned, she began drinking. First, it was under the guise of food poisoning, but finally I showed up at her place to find her completely passed out and in very bad shape. I stayed with her until she wasn't feeling ill anymore. A few days later, she reached out to me, as she was drinking heavily again. I love her, so of course I had to come to the rescue. I truly felt that I was coming from a place of love and selflessness. She expressed her appreciation and it felt genuine. I left her place in the morning, at the time she claimed she was contacting her sponsor. The next morning (because I felt something was off) I came over to her place, only to find her in bed with her ex-boyfriend.

It was truly the most traumatic experience I've experienced. I feel so betrayed (especially since she tried to spin the blame on me - for coming over there unannounced - and I had a key to her place!).

I have since spoken to many people in the AA program, with many different bits of advice. The consistent advice is to completely detach. I have been having the hardest time doing so. She has tried to call and text, but I have not responded, until yesterday. I sent her a text telling her I hoped she was doing ok, and that I was thinking about her. She didn't respond.

I'm really hoping someone can give me some words of wisdom. I'm having such a hard time coming to terms with how a relationship that was seemingly right and healthy, transformed into the scenario I've just described. I am also scared to death at just what she might have to tell me. I'm already hurting and don't know if I can handle any more heartache.

I'm really trying to get my arms around the situation. I am in disbelief that I was betrayed in such a manner.

I'm new to Al-Anon and am learning the concept of detachment, but It is so hard to do so in this case. I want desperately to engage with her and reconnect on some level (which I know is complete insanity). I really hope someone out there might give me some insight. It would be much appreciated.
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Old 10-24-2010, 02:57 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I think you have to worry about your own sobriety first. This is NOT a good scene for you to be dealing with.

I know that you care for her, but she HAS betrayed your trust, and is dealing with her own stuff that you can't really help with anyway.

Keep going to Al-Anon, and keep talking to your friends in AA. Do you have a sponsor? If not, this would be an excellent time to get one.
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Old 10-24-2010, 03:10 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Thank you

I do have a sponsor and am almost through the steps. I do feel that I have developed some tools or otherwise I would be back in my disease right now.

I was just really caught off guard. I gave of myself and even put my sobriety in danger while witnessing her drinking. Then that happened. That's a hard pill to swallow.

Thanks for your kind words.
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Old 10-24-2010, 03:20 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Heartbreak can happen no matter how solid we are in our sobriety. I'm glad you have a sponsor and are working the Steps. Al-Anon WILL help with the detachment. I've been married twice to alcoholics (before my own drinking became alcoholic) and it really helped me to realize that I didn't CAUSE their alcoholism, I couldn't CONTROL it, and I couldn't CURE it.

Detachment is a good tool for anyone to learn--think about working with newcomers who go back out. Same thing--you can't control, and aren't responsible for, their choices.

Keep taking good care of yourself. You also might want to check out (if you haven't already) our Friends and Family forum.
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Old 10-24-2010, 03:26 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Welcome to SR
sorry to know of your distress....
No one likes to feel rejected in or out of AA.


No.....I did not get involved so I can't share from my exxperience.

I can tell you this.....my sponsee who finished their formal
Steps and were living them......
seem to make better choices in all areas of their life.

In the 12712 ...relationships are discussed on 119.

With that observation in mind...I certainly hope you will do the
same......prayers for your peace going out
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Old 10-24-2010, 03:58 PM   #6 (permalink)
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You arent the first to get involved in a relationship in early sobriety....and you certainly wont be the last.

"Acceptance is the answer to all my problems today. When I am disturbed, it is because I find some person, place, thing or situation - some fact of my life - unacceptable to me, and I can find no serenity until I accept that person, place, thing or situation as being exactly the way it is at this moment.

I need to concentrate not so much on what needs to be changed in the world as on what needs to be changed in me and in my attitudes
."

There is a valuable FLO (friiginfantastic learning opportunity) in this for you. Dig deep, dig with your sponsor or trusted AA friend and find it. This is about you. Its not about them...its never about them.
I wish you peace.

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Last edited by CarolD; 10-24-2010 at 08:30 PM. Reason: Added Source per SR guideline
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Old 10-24-2010, 04:18 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I was in couple unhealthy relationships early in sobriety. People told me to take a year off, focus on my sobriety and myself. That was good advice. When I finally headed their advice, my year ended being 18 months. I grew up. I got a solid foundation.

I know how you feel. I've seen many early in sobriety have the same experience. The end result is almost always the same. It never works out and one or both people end up drunk.

Sounds like you know what you have to do, and really don't want to. Please stay plugged in to AA and your sponsor thru this. When I look back at how I survived it, AA and my sponsor were constants in my life.
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Old 10-24-2010, 05:30 PM   #8 (permalink)
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In my observations many many guys/girls get it together in early sobriety.

Mainly through the rooms.........lots of needy people wanting to fill the gaping hole left behind by a life time of drinking...imo
A few people i know, it worked out....and they are still together.

but the vast majority fail...........and the consequences of that added pain in early sobriety can appear to make a drink very attractive.
powerful feelings and emotions can blinker us from vital information.

Im asked similar questions by guys i work with often...
Its a risk and the odds of it turning into a love story are slimmer than slim.
and the odds of it turning into a painful mess are high.

this is just my observations.........i have no personal experience of love in the rooms.
well i have a tiny bit........but she knew nothing about it.....lol...lol...
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Old 10-24-2010, 08:31 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Put a rush on the rest of those steps! Good luck:-)
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Old 10-24-2010, 10:34 PM   #10 (permalink)
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The wise thing to do is to dump her in a hurry. Get out now before you really get hurt. Just my opinion. Lets see. You're honest with eachother. She said she had food poisoning but was really drinking instead. You catch her in bed with her ex-boyfriend. Then she tries to spin the blame on you? Doesn't sound too honest to me. You feel betrayed and hurt. And now you're messed up. Bad deal. You don't need that crap. She'll only pull you down.
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Old 10-24-2010, 11:12 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Thank you!!

Thank you everyone for your kind words. I am so grateful for this 12 step program that is comprised of (at times) complete strangers that are willing to reach out and share their experience, strength and hope.

I have a sponsor and am practically through the steps (have a few amends left to make). I need to get a sponsee. I have been speaking to my sponsor and as many fellow AA members that I can. They all have echoed exactly what I've heard on this forum. That is, "protect myself at all costs." It is just amazing how personal involvement through my program has potentially saved my life. Without these people and my tools, I have no doubt that I would be following her down a really dark path. I will do my best to view my situation as my HP's will, and that he was ultimately protecting me from greater pain down the line.
I would love nothing more than to get her back, but I DO NOT want the person that I saw in the grips of her disease. That's not the person that I fell for at the beginning. And if it was, will I was too blinded to see things clearly.

I am going to work on surrendering and accepting. I guess these are the cards I was dealt - and I lost that hand. But there are plenty more hands to play in my game of life.

I dragged myself to a meeting this evening. I didn't want to go. I ran into a group of partners of a law firm I have been interviewing with to join their practice. Turns our they're all in recovery. What are the odds? Out of the blue, it appears that my employment situation is improved dramatically. This was giving me almost as much grief as my ex-girlfriend. Somehow, out of that terrible storm I was in, the sun shone through and rewarded me with a miracle. It's amazing.

Thank you again everyone for your kind words of wisdom.
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Old 10-24-2010, 11:27 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Wow! what an example of ....."one door opens as
another closes" in quick action.

All my best as you continue to move forward
Please do keep posting with us......
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Old 10-25-2010, 04:15 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Work the steps, go to meetings, and follow your own heart..your own compass....

I know many who came into the program with relationships that started in sickness...and they grew to good relationships within the dedication and caring of those two participants.

I can tell you the number of people who I know who came in the program and BY CHOICE had no relationships in the first year...ZERO lol

There is no majic place to start having relationships...and relationships are life...they are what they are.

I believe from my reading of the big book that they talk about those relationships that come out of the immediate connection cause we are all seeking sobriety...those relationships are sobriety relationships...not relationships of the romantic variety...girl meets boy on AA campus is about mistaking a connection to another due to our common expereince with alchoholism as being "life love"

If you have a good sponsor...talk to them...they will help you find the questions to ask yourself ...not give you thier answers....we each have our own. Stay sober...be as honest with yourself as you can...and you will learn and grow on your own path.
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Old 10-25-2010, 06:57 AM   #14 (permalink)
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This thread brings to mind the idea that not everything worth practicing is written in the Big Book. One of the first things I learned as a newcomer was "no major decisions in the first year", and "newcomers don't get involved with newcomers." Most of us don't come to AA in good shape. My life was in complete meltdown in the beginning, to the point that even though I'd been married for 15 years, I didn't have a clue how to make things right. I can't imagine trying to start a new relationship with a person of the opposite sex with all the inherant problems that come with it. As has been said already, back off and take care of yourself first. That's a challenge in itself.
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Old 10-25-2010, 07:38 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Sometimes they're NOT the cards we're dealt but the cards we pick up after we toss out some good ones. I've thrown plenty of Aces away, breaking up a pair of them, to pick up some 3's, 4's, and 5's in the hopes that I'd get that straight flush.

My part in that is that I don't want to try to be happy and content with a pair of aces, I feel I need the straight flush to win........ and I never get that flush.....and I have to wait for the next hand to give it another shot.

When my focus is on my HP, AA, my program, working with others, giving it away, etc......I find things like "relationships" seem to just fall into place on their own. Not to mention, He picks much better girls for me than I do. LOLOLOL
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Old 10-25-2010, 08:07 AM   #16 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Music View Post
One of the first things I learned as a newcomer was "no major decisions in the first year".....
Except, of course, that business of turning your entire will and life over to the care of God as you understand Him.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Music View Post
"newcomers don't get involved with newcomers." Most of us don't come to AA in good shape. ........ As has been said already, back off and take care of yourself first.
YEP, for sure.

I was taught that I needed a new set of priorities in life and getting laid comes later. I was told that I better learn to love God before I try another relationship on my own.....without God's help......or it'd go the way all my past relationships went.

......and this one was the final blow to me (hehehe...from the same guy who taught me "first things learned are the last things forgotten / last things learned are the first things forgotten): If I want to know where I stand in MY program....... look at who I'm sleeping with. If I'm healthy, well, happy, joyous and free...I'll attract that sort of person. He says, "God's no fool Mike..... He's not gonna send a 'good man' to a ho......and He's not gonna send a 'good woman' to a low-down dirty dog. Nope, God's gonna send someone just as sick (or well) as you are."

lol....man those oldtimers hit hard sometimes, don't they?
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Old 10-25-2010, 08:38 AM   #17 (permalink)
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When I was new to the program I got tunnel vision on things.. self-will run riot and was the actor on the stage running the show again, even working the program was 'getting good enough' to get what I wanted then when things caved in on me it got ugly. Also got drunk eventually after a year and a half. Today it's pretty apparent to me, self-will run riot, instincts on the rampage driving me blindly.

I feel fairly immune to such shenanigans today but things just get subtler so Im still looking at step 3 and my demands on self and others. Like someone reminded me the other day 'stuff happens' the Bible says sun shines and rain falls on the good and the bad
So you where in the wrong place at the wrong time with the wrong person and it all started with your eyeballs. No human power can fix this woman's ailments and your sure not too important to get stung by her struggles the same ones she's in the middle of whether your with her or not.

Love/lust is powerful stuff I remember the bells going off the sun shining brighter the euphoria, the feeling that it was so good it had to be straight from God, absolutely deluded, head over heals before it all came out from under me and how irrational I was in hindsight. Makes me want to puke just remembering the way I could get.

If I where you, I'd get some privacy, get on your knees, and thank God this woman is out of your life.
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Old 10-25-2010, 08:42 AM   #18 (permalink)
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lol....man those oldtimers hit hard sometimes, don't they?
Yes they do Mike. The problem is that as time goes by, some newcomers seem to think the oldtimers are stuck in the past ans should move forward to get in the day. Then they wonder why sobriety eludes them. They seem forget that there's only one way to become an oldtimer. Do what's told/sugested to them.
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Old 10-25-2010, 09:24 AM   #19 (permalink)
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Excuse me for butting in again maybe this could be helpful to someone One habit Ive formed in the rooms is that when a good looking girl shows up that really 'catches' my eye I leave immediately after the meeting unless I have legitimate business like someone to catch up about something or a male newcomer to approach. It takes 10 seconds to rinse out the coffeepot/brew basket and someone else last one out 2 seconds to flip the lights breaker. I have to admit too that im aided in my virtues in that this is rural Arkansas and most people except me are pretty damn ugly.
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Old 10-25-2010, 09:27 AM   #20 (permalink)
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another point to remember is you are sober
you stayed sober thru it all
that is AA working in your life
now you know you can stay sober thru emotionally hard times
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