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Struggling badly...

Old 01-22-2007, 10:05 AM
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Exclamation Struggling badly...

Hi Everyone,

I've never done anything like this before but today something inside of me seems to have snapped. I am currently in the middle of a messy ending to another failed relationship and I feel that I cannot cope. Both of parents are alcoholics. My mum and dad split up when I was five years old. My mother became very promiscuous when she was drinking and could not stop drinking once she started. My father became violent to my mother frequently and to us kids on occasion. They split when my mother met another man who was also an alcoholic, but he was rich, and that seemed to suit her!

Funnily enoough, she then embarked on 15 years of sobriety. My step father was incredibly abusive both physically and emotionally. He used to make my mother tell him in front of myself and my sister that she loved him more than us. He became sexually abusive toward me when I was around 12 which culminated with him throwing me out at 14. My mother suffered from severe depression all throughout my life and she was no match for his manipulative ways. I became addicted to heroin and alcohol after the death of my grandmother (who I was close to) but I have been sober for 8 years now. I went back to university to study law, modelled and tried to build a life for myself. I was in a very healthy and loving relationship for five years, however the consistency must have eventually made me bore of it. I then proceeded to carry on a relationship with a man who as much older than me who was an alcoholic. I ended this relationship, then regretted it and begged him to take me back. He said that he knew he would never change and that he wouldn't put me through it. I was heartbroken and self destructive for a long time after the demise of that and continued to try to reconcile even though i knew i didn't want a relationship with him.

I picked myself up again and by this time my mother had started drinking again. She would be sleeping with strange men and then reuinted with my stepfather after many years separation and agreed with his condition that I was not to step foot in their marital house despite the fact I had been supporting her for a few years. She also told me that he didn't mean to do what he had done to me when I was younger as he was drunk and thought that I was her! She also pulled out her ol' favourite thing to say to me: that I was a "victim" and couldn't forget the past and that the reason my partner drank was because of me.

Her relationship ended badly when my stepfather beat her in a drunken rage and then me when i arrived afer her panicked phone call and tried to intervene. A court injunction was taken so as to keep him away from her, my sister and myself but she quickly met up with another man and continued drinking.

I left my home country of Australia and travelled to ENgland. I was determined to stay single and focus on myself so as to make better relationship decisions. I travelled a lot, had a great flat and a great job. I was happy.

I stayed single for two years and then met who I thought was the man of my dreams. We got on famously, he was motivated, thoughtful, kind and followed me around the world. He drank, but it didn't seem out of control at all. We moved in together after a 4-5 months and everything was great. I then started to notice how regular his drinking was. He would drink to the point of getting drunk 6 nights out of seven. He works incredibly hard and everynight would end up at the pub for a wind down that ended up with him being so drunk that he couldn't talk. He got arrested, hurt himself and hurt me (accidentally due to knocking in to me because he couldn't balance himself), he would repeatedly make sexual advances on me when he was very very drunk and would not stop despite me telling him how horrible it made me feel. He always was so okay the next day though, i somehow managed to think it was all fine. When I started to express my worry he would turn it around on me and tell me that it was because of my background and i was the one that had real problems. He would tell me that we needed space and ask me to leave the house. As I had put all my money in to our relationship (food, bills, travel etc) i had no savings left and was forced to return home because i couldn't cope. This happened three times and we are not talking crossing towns, or even states. It is a 24 hour plane ride!! Once I left he would beg for forgiveness and tell me it would be okay and i would trot back to him all doe eyed! THe last time this happened I got pnuemonia from all the stress and couldn't make it back to the UK in order to extend my skilled migrant visa and then the laws changed in relation to visa program meaning i was not eligble! So, the country that I had been living in for four years i was now not eligble to return to. I was beside myself with grief and stuck in Australia. My partner was in contact with me telling me how much he loved me and how it would all be okay. He recognised that he had a problem and was going to do whatever it takes to make it better with me. He claimed that he finally realised how much I meant to him and that this was an amazing revelation. He convinced me to come back to the UK and that we would sort out my visa from here and go to counselling. He claimed that he would financially support me as I had had to spend my savings on the trips back home. As all of my belongings were at our home (I only had two weeks worth of clothes with me!!) and I really wanted to believe that what he was saying was true, I returned to the UK.

This was one month ago. The first two weeks were great, I work with a homeless charity at xmas and was really busy. We were hanging out, laughing and I was so happy to be with him. I thought that everything was going to be okay. 2 weeks ago it was his birthday and even though i didn't have much money i planned a special day. He didn't come home after work but went to the pub with a co-worker. 3 hours after he was due home he rang me from the pub actng like nothing was wrong. I didn't get angry or lose my temper I just said i felt sad as he said he was going to be back in time for our dinner. He came home and completely went for me. Telling me how unreasonable i was, how pissed off he was and all the rest. Things calmed down and the next day we semi smoothed things over. I waited for a few days to calmly talk to him about how i was feeling. He used that opportunity to tell me that he wasn't sure if he wanted to have children despite the fact this is something we have spoken about and agreed upon before. That day we broke up. The arguing continued on for days and I even said that we could adopt a "wait and see" attitude towards the having kids decision. Things just spiralled out of control and i left the flat we shared. I am now sleeping on the floor at a friend's place, stuck in a country where my visa is in dispute, with no money and a broken heart. (A rather large helping of self loathing to boot) I have been in this situation a week. When we have spoken on the phone he is so cold to me. He told me today that the fact that i was willing to compromise on something that i wanted (children) was indicative of the sort of strength of character I had. I feel completely out of control of my emotions and utterly exhausted.

This is an absolute opus!!!! I am sorry to vent to you all. I am so scared and confused. I do not know what to do.

Lisa
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Old 01-22-2007, 10:40 AM
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Welcome Lisa….

I am so sorry that you are going through this. Is it possible for your parents to help get you back home?

I remember what it felt like to hit my bottom, it was crushing and I guess I had to get that bad before I would surrender.

My ex-abf had been sober a month when my bottom came, he came home from an AA meeting and told me he was not in love with me and he met a girl in AA that “understood” him. This was 3 weeks before Christmas, I actually had to take down the Christmas tree. I moved one week later with my daughter who was in her teens and did not need to see all this. I felt much like you describe.

I had to hit that hard cuz I’m stubborn. If I had not gotten to that point I would never have gone to Al-anon and start working on my recovery. I was just as sick as he was the only difference is that the Alcoholic was my drug of choice.

I just want you to know you are not alone. These feelings will pass though, I can promise you that. Hang in there, keep posting... it is good for your soul.
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Old 01-22-2007, 10:54 AM
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thank you..

thank you for your kind words cynay. it made me burst in to tears to read about your story. it is great that you have come so far in your recovery.

both of my parents are still drinking and i am not in contact with them. i speak with my mum every so often but not much. i guess i will sort it out somehow, i just don't know yet..

the worst thing of all of this is that i still love him. because i have been exposed to addiction my whole life i know that his attitude toward me is driven by his addiction. i will keep trying to stay strong...i just feel so frightened.
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Old 01-22-2007, 01:28 PM
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Hi there Lisa, and welcome to SoberRecovery.

I'm truly sorry that you are going thru such hardships. My life was also a huge mess as a result of all the "stuff" I went thru as a child. I think your being sober for 8 years speaks volumes to your strength of character and willingess to make a good life for yourself. Are you going to meets of AA in England? I have never been there but I've heard that there is great recovery there. They are listed in the phonebook, and if you ask them they will even send somebody to give you a lift to the nearest meet.

I found AA to be extremely helpful in helping me straighten out my life. I also went to counseling and meets of ACoA and al-anon.

You mention that you had a great job and a great flat in England when you first arrived there from Australia, so you know that you _can_ have a good life. All I know about you is what you have shared, but it seems to me that you do a fine job of taking care of your life until you get involved with a man. I understand how that happens, I used to have the same problem with relationships, they just completely messed up my head and I would make the _stupidest_ decisions.

You don't need to apologize for writing an opus, we all do when we first arrive here. Feel free to write as much as you want. We're here to listen.

Mike
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Old 01-22-2007, 01:48 PM
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You know though..... That was a blessing sweetie. It might not feel like it now but maybe God is just doing for you what you cant do for yourself. What if this was a few years down the road and you had a child???

There is no reason you cant love him, the trick is loving yourself more and not allowing someone to treat you that way. As time goes by it will get better, I had to go with no contact though .... I know he just messes with my head and I could not allow him near me or to talk to me while I healed. If I were to see him today I dont think it would effect me... not that Im going to try it.
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Old 01-22-2007, 03:04 PM
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Welcome, Lisa, I am so sorry for your troubled life.

I'm not sure how it works in England, but in Canada (where I live) there are excellent shelters for abused women. They provide not only a place to stay and be safe, but also counselling and skill training if you need it to help you get on your feet and get a job. One where I used to volunteer also provides very decent affordable housing, in an apartment or a townhouse complex, complete with security and in-house counselling where they allow you to stay safely and go through the transition to taking care of yourself financially.

Please check and see what may be available there. Abuse is something you don't have to tolerate, you are worth so much more than all that.

My prayers go out for you and I hope you find a safer, more peaceful way to live soon. You deserve to be treated with respect, regardless of what your past has been. Please remember that.

Hugs
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Old 01-22-2007, 04:49 PM
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Welcome to SR Lisa... I'm so glad you found us. I don't have a whole lot of "words of wisdom" but I DID want to pop in and welcome you and tell you that we are so glad you are here. Please read around.... look in the friends and family of alcoholics and friends and family of substance abusers. You will find a lot of people who feel the same way you do and are dealing with a lot of the same issues. Sometimes it helps us when we read how others are dealing with the same issues. Please stick around and keep posting.
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Old 01-22-2007, 06:21 PM
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Hi Lisa,

I am sorry for your struggles.

I think the first thing you need to do is to find a woman's shelter where you can go and be safe and make a plan. I live in Canada too, and in the city I live in, there are good resources for abused women to protect them and give them guidance. I hope you can find something similar in London. Call a Crisis Line or its equivalent and see what information you can get.

I hope you will keep reading and posting here and let us know how you are doing. You are definitely not alone in your struggles.
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Old 01-22-2007, 06:32 PM
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Hi Lisa....

Wow! what a strong spirit you have!
Prayers and Mega Hugs
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Old 01-22-2007, 07:45 PM
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Lisa, Hi...Wow you have been through so much. I'm so sorry for the pain you are experiencing. You seem to recognize that your life experiences have been impacting the choices you have made in relationships. I think that is an excellent start to wanting to work on yourself and heal.

I hope you will reach out to as many support services as you can to help you during this difficult time. If you can find meetings, the support there is excellent. Please keep reading and posting - there are lots of caring people here who really understand.
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Old 01-22-2007, 07:50 PM
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((Lisa))

He does not define you... you define you. His opinion is none of your business (ever hear that saying, ... opinions are like armpits, we all have a couple?)... think of his opinion of you that way. Unimportant.

Ann's idea of a women's shelter is a good one. You need help, and I hope you reach out for it.

One day at a time. Just do the next right thing... and don't look too far down the road. That's how I get through tough times.

((hugs))

Oh yeah, and I pray like crazy... because it works.
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Old 01-23-2007, 04:52 AM
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Originally Posted by Cynay View Post
There is no reason you cant love him, the trick is loving yourself more and not allowing someone to treat you that way. As time goes by it will get better, I had to go with no contact though .... I know he just messes with my head and I could not allow him near me or to talk to me while I healed. If I were to see him today I dont think it would effect me... not that Im going to try it.

I know that you are right. I find it so hard trying to gather the strength to not speak to him. I still feel like I just want to hug him and tell him that it will all be okay. What I really want is for him to do that to me! I am trying to stay strong, really, really trying hard not to call and get my head clear so that I can think about the decisions that I have to make. Thank you for listening to me.
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Old 01-23-2007, 04:55 AM
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Originally Posted by 51anna View Post
Hi Lisa,

I am sorry for your struggles.

I think the first thing you need to do is to find a woman's shelter where you can go and be safe and make a plan. I live in Canada too, and in the city I live in, there are good resources for abused women to protect them and give them guidance. I hope you can find something similar in London. Call a Crisis Line or its equivalent and see what information you can get.

I hope you will keep reading and posting here and let us know how you are doing. You are definitely not alone in your struggles.
Thank you for your support. Wow, I find it really hard to think in terms of being "abused" by him. I guess, I've come from a background where this sort of behaviour is the norm and he is so amazingly convincing of being fine when he is sober... Because I am not in my home country, i do not think that those resources are open to me. I really, really appreciate your kind support.
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Old 01-23-2007, 05:00 AM
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Originally Posted by BigSis View Post
((Lisa))

One day at a time. Just do the next right thing... and don't look too far down the road. That's how I get through tough times.
thanks big sis. as i left home so young, as i became an adult (i'm 28) it became so important for me to be independent enough to provide my own security. my own money, my own flat, a good job. so to have all of those things taken away because of the circumstance is so stressful, i feel like a failure. I feel like i was when i was 14 and had nowhere to go. in those days i think i was probably a bit more gung-ho than i am now! So i find the hardest thing is not looking in the future. i keep imagining he will find someone new and that he will love them enough to not be this way. he was so amazing for the first year of our relationship, i cannot understand how this got so out of control. i'm really struggling today with not talking to him. thank you, thank you, thank you for your kindness.
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Old 01-23-2007, 06:27 AM
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i keep imagining he will find someone new and that he will love them enough to not be this way.

Oh, I have been there, done that.

Mr. Big (my husband) and I divorced back in 1990. We were divorced for three years, then remarried after almost all that time in counseling. BUT... there was a time, probably close to 9 months, that we did not see each other or talk (other than to trade kids).

I had those EXACT same thoughts.

But you know, he got what he needed during that time... some space to figure out what he wanted and what he was losing and the will to make BIIGG BIIIGGG BIIIIGGGGGG changes to make it work again.

If this is just a break, I hope you can use it, too, to figure out who you are, what you want, and as Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz said, "to find my heart's desire".

My sponsor calls it trying to be the "brightest, shiniest me I can be". Like a bright, new penny. I love that analogy.

I am so glad you are here... keep posting, keeping asking questions, and your strength and wonderful insight will help you through this time. You are in my prayers and on my heart today.

(((hugs)))
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Old 01-23-2007, 07:56 AM
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thanks big sis. i am so pleased to hear that your story worked out positively. it must have been very hard for you.

i liked the analogy about being the best you can be. the big problem with my partner is that he is completely unwilling to go to counselling. he has said that he would go along to counselling to support me, with my issues (with my past etc) but refuses to go to relationship counselling. he is of the view that if a relationship needs that sort of help then you shouldn't be together in the first place. it is very hurtful.

i broke my promise to myself. i called him. he was was quite pleasant to me. actually, he sounded really happy to hear from me until, i said to him about the counselling and then he just got really cold and said "i have to go". I just wish so badly he would realise what is going on. Everynight when he is asleep, his body heats up and he gets really bad night sweats. He has black circles under his eyes and looks really ill. He is only 31 and it makes me so desperately sad to see the affect that it is having on his physical as well as emotional health! i know that i should divert some of the worry i have him to worry for my own health...

trying to get strong

really pleased to have found this forum, everyone has been so lovely to me.
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Old 01-23-2007, 09:07 AM
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I just wish so badly he would realise what is going on.
This is only a thought but, realization goes both ways.... what are you realizing from all this? He does not want help and he does not think you have a problem. You know how frustrated you get trying to get him to go to counceling??? That is probably how frustrated he gets trying to tell you he does not have a problem and he will not do it. You will drive yourself mad trying to control the situation.

Take the focus off him hon ... what are you doing today to correct your situation???
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Old 01-23-2007, 09:53 AM
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I realise from this how deeply I am affected by things that I had put in the past and how this is leading me to make very bad decisions for myself.

To be brutally honest I haven't done that much today. I have felt so exhausted by all of this that I haven't been really able to think too clearly.

Do you have any tips on how to get through the initial stages of this?
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Old 01-23-2007, 11:02 AM
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I just had to do the initial mourning.

Losts of rest, remember to eat, cried alot, tried to read self help books.

The other suggestion is to stop doing what you know is going to hurt you. No contact worked for me.
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Old 01-23-2007, 11:25 AM
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Hi Cynay,

Thanks for your advice. I was reading in the other forum groups and saw some posts where you were talking about spending time with your daughter. I think you sound like such a wonderful mum. Despite everything that's happened with my mum, I still love her with all of my heart, but I think that it would be great to have a mum like you!

all of this posting is really helping making me feel stronger. thank you.
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