How can two people see things so differently?

Old 06-01-2003, 07:53 AM
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How can two people see things so differently?

I am so confused. It amazes me how differently my A and I interpret things. For the past three years he hasn't worked but 30 days. He hasn't contributed to the budget. He wanted a car which had to be put in my name because of his poor credit history. He has burned holes in the interior, spilled things so much that you can't tell the color of the carpet, put dents all over it, ruined the front tires and rims (the man at the repair shop said "it looks like someone has been playing Dukes of Hazzard in this!". He has only made about 6 payments for the car in 2 years. We have taken numerous family trips and trips just the 2 of us and he hasn't so much as paid for a meal. He contributed to the grocery fund the first year he lived here, not a penny for the past two years. I stopped going out because HE is an alcoholic. He has no money to help with the bills but goes out to sing Karoke three nights every week because that is the only way HE can let off steam. Because he doesn't drink I am not supposed to care and after all, am I trying to take away everything he likes? "Why don't I just tie him to a chair, that's the only life I want for him. He smokes carelessly. We moved into a new house a year ago, I have counted over 100 burn holes in my carpets and floors. Cigarettes left burning to fall out of the ashtrays, leaves candles burning at night, burns incense in closets .....Mr. Fire hazard. He gets angry and yells obscenities at me and in front of my children. He gets mad and on numerous occassions has opened the car door going down the highway telling me he isn't going to take MY **** anymore and tried to jump out of a moving car, both with and withoug the children in the car. My fault of coarse, I dared to make him mad. If I would just shut up, HE wouldn't do those things. I've begged, pleaded, bitched and moaned. He says he is trying, he didn't mean to do it. He didn't even know he did it so how can I expect him to not do something he doesn't even know he is doing? I AM SO FRUSTRATED!My boundaries, if you live here, you don's smoke in the house or the cars. If you want to drive the car, then you pay for the car and you drive sensibly. If you get angry then we talk about it calmly, not yell and scream or jump out of cars in front of the kids. You must have a job of some sort and pay your share of the bills. You finish treatment, attend AA, and stop going to bars. If you really must go to karoke to let off steam, then we go together, occassionally when we can afford it. If you want to play, you must pay your obligations and then you play. Apparently these things are too much to ask of an adult. His view is I am trying to control him. I am dictating the terms of HIS life. My response, I am simply dictating the terms of MY life. If he chooses to be in it, then he must behave as a responsible adult. I refuse to get up every morning and drag my butt to work while he sleeps til noon and then makes a mess of my house and vehicles only to go out and stay out til 2 or 3 in the morning. Refuses to pay me money for the bills but can afford to go out and play. Amazingly, his view of this is I am a selfish and self centered bitch. My family and friends just shake their heads. How can I continue to let him do this to me? I am estranged from most of them because they can't stand to see me continue to let him make me so miserable. He sees it as they are all assholes and judgemental. After all, he wasn't put on this earth to make a bunch of rednecks happy. He will dance to the beat of his own drummer and doesn't really care what they think. It hurts so much to have loved him so and given so much only to have him turn everything around and blame me for his unhappiness. To call me those names and accuse me of being self centered. I feel like I am in another world. How can he not see what has happened here. When I calmly try to point out why I can't continue to live this way, he is angry and retorts "oh yeah, it is all my fault. You don't have any responsibility in this do you?". The really sad thing is he is sober. Has been sober for quite some time now. I believed that his being sober was going to make things better. He is so angry and bitter. Does that ever change? Is all the blaming and manipulation a pattern that he will have always. The lies when it would be better to tell the truth? I really am struggling with this. He acts as though because he has gone to all the work to stay sober, I owe him. He shouldn't have to do anymore but stay sober. Is this typical behavior? I really am struggling with my feelings. We h ave not lived together for about 8 months now. He wants to see me, calls me and begs. Every time we talk, he wants me to give in. When I say no, not until you are ready to respect my boundaries, it is a repeat of calling me names, and telling me how selfish I am. He begs and apologizes only to do it again the next time. I want it to stop. He denies any of the problems are because of his behavior. Everything has to do with the way I act. Tells me how I need to change and how I am expecting him to do all the work. My heart feels like he has stomped on in a million times. I am so full of hurt and resentment. I am trying to detach. I need to. He is hanging on for dear life. I feel horrible, but I know in my heart I truly am doing the best thing for all of us. I don't understand if he loves me as he professes and can't live without me, how can he refuse to respect the simple boundaries that any self respecting adult would automatically be doing? I need to know this is the right thing. I need to make peace with my decision. This is the hardest thing I have ever had to do in my life.
Old 06-01-2003, 09:30 AM
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EmotionalMeg's Avatar
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: British Columbia, Canada
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Hi again Tamatha,
My heart goes out to you.
It sounds like you are reaching a bottom yourself.
If you can, get yourself to an Alanon meeting. You are able to sit face to face with people experiencing the same emotional struggles... eventually, having a sponser, can be like having a lifeline. It is a god-send.

And perhaps it is time to re-evaluate your relationship with your A. Are your needs being met? And most importantly, has the relationship become destructive? I am not necessarily refering to any physical / verbal abuse, but rathar to what it brings to you. Sometimes we have to let go of relationships that inevitably will bring us more pain than happiness... And especially when they hinder our own recovery. We have the power to take care of ourselves, but sometimes we have to let go of more than we want to.

That being said, I want to tell you that I am in no way TELLING you to kick him to the curb; only you know when / if that is an option. And I KNOW that there is a way to continue to live with the A that I love so much... I have made it work for me. But only because I have set the boundaries that protect me and my children; because of my program; and because my relationship with my A does NOT hold me back - The moment the destruction returns, I will leave.

Tamatha, only YOU can decide what is best. But don't do it alone. Find a meeting, get a sponser... or if you chose a different route, find a support system that enhances your strength and soon you will be making the right decisions.

Take care
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Old 06-01-2003, 12:50 PM
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Join Date: May 2003
Location: South Africa
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Tamantha, do what I did, read over your posts and you will see that you are doing the right thing, when you see what you have written it gives it a different perspective. I know it is so difficult to have to make decisions like this, without the emotional support you need, but you were strong enough to make the initial move, and from your posts I think you will be strong enough to follow thru' with it. You are not to blame for what he is doing, it sounds like something he has struggled with his entire life, and you have tried, and given him so many chances, what more can you do, now is the time for tough love. He should appreciate the fact that you love him enough to try and help him, if you did not, you would have walked away the first time.
How do your daughters feel about everything?
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