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What would you do?

Old 07-24-2008, 08:49 AM
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What would you do?

Hello,

I am back again. I posted for the first time last week and you all had such wonderful replies and advice. Thank you.

Here is my story this week. He went out last Monday night until 11:00 p.m. and had to work his new job at 3:00 a.m. Of course he said he would never do that again ha ha. Last night he went out until 1:30 a.m. and had to be at work at 3:00 a.m. Great. Of course, I was a nervous wreck. He wouldn't answer the phone. He had me and his sister in shambles. He called her and said he ran out of gas along the road and then hung up on her. VERY drunk and driving. I called his boss at 2:00 a.m. and said he was vomiting and would be in at 6:00 a.m. I know I shouldn't have but I don't want him losing this job. It is very good.

He thanked me this morning for taking such good care of him. I told him like many other times that I can't take it and either he needed to leave today or I would with our four year old. He said I have more family that I should leave if this is what I wanted. Then he tells me he loves me. He plays such mind games and I always fall for them. I have to stop. My daughter worships him too.

His sister thinks I need to quit giving him ultimatums and not following through. I know she is right. I truly wish he would return to the man I married. Thanks for listening.

Chris
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Old 07-24-2008, 08:58 AM
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Well, I am in no place to give advice but I would not give ulitmatums you can't follow through with either. I know I feel the same way but to him they are just empty words. I would try to not call his work either. As much as this is a good job, maybe he needs some consequences. I would also call 911 if you know he is driving drunk.
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Old 07-24-2008, 09:01 AM
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Your siste is right. Everytime you give an ultimatum and don't follow thru you are confiming you don't really intend to do anything.

Calling and making excuses with his boss is a wonderful example of enabling him and removing the consequences of his choice to get drunk rather than be a responsible adult. Everytime you do that you are taking responsibilty that is not yours to own and denying you AH the opportunity to be responsibile for himself. Are you his mother? Is he a child?

Wishing for change isn't going to work. Wishing for whatever isn't going to work. You can choose to remain where you are, living as you are, being treated like crap. OR you can choose to do something about it. But only you can decide to take action and decide what that action should be.
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Old 07-24-2008, 09:04 AM
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Your sister is right. Do not say you are leaving unless you are prepared to leave. Calling his work and covering for him only gives him more reason to carry on doing what he is doing.

Why in the world would he change if he's got you taking care of his problems? And why would he actually believe you are serious about leaving if you never do? He's got you right where he wants you, doesn't he?

L
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Old 07-24-2008, 09:19 AM
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Hi Chris, so many things going on here...

Originally Posted by worriedwife2 View Post
... I was a nervous wreck. He wouldn't answer the phone. He had me and his sister in shambles.
You are choosing to loose your serenity here. Why were you and your sister in law awake at 2am fussing on whether he got to work or not? Are you both his mummy? In fact, I think I'd be a little peeved if my mum was checking on my where-a-bouts, or whether or not I went to work. I am an adult, if I choose to go to work or not it is no one elses business other than mine. By the same reasoning, it is no one else's business if your AH goes to work or not because he is too drunk to bother. All you and your SIL are doing is caretaking for a grown man who can make his own decisions and suffer his own consequences.

Originally Posted by worriedwife2 View Post
...I called his boss at 2:00 a.m. and said he was vomiting and would be in at 6:00 a.m. I know I shouldn't have but I don't want him losing this job. It is very good...
There is a word for this behaviour - enabling. You are actively covering up for your AH. Making sure his life keeps ticking over, that he doesn't get into trouble with his boss. You are right that you shouldn't have done that. i have done this for my exabf too. He kept missing work, he lost his paycheck due to absences, he eventually lost his job. All my covering for him didn't stop that. It just made me act in ways that were not true to myself - I lied regularly for him.

If the job is so good, surely your AH knows this too? Knowing this then, he should want to keep it. If he still cannot get himself there on time, it must mean he is not bothered, like all A's in active addiction his drinking comes first - before anything and anyone.

Originally Posted by worriedwife2 View Post
...He thanked me this morning for taking such good care of him....
This is your AH keeping you sweet, keep you enabling, keep you caretaking.

Originally Posted by worriedwife2 View Post
...He said I have more family that I should leave if this is what I wanted.....
I got this too! ''You leave if things are so bad..'' etc etc. It is the A's way of handing over responsibility of the relationship onto you and off them. They don't like responsibility, they don't like making decisions, and they don't like losing their enablers. So by ducking out of the moving out, he has effectively given over all that onto your shoulders. It will also mean that if you do move out, and things get ugly, he will be able to point the finger at you and say it was all your choice.

Your daughter may well love him, as she should her dad, but as many will testify, growing up in a household with an addicted parent and the other enabling and constantly giving of them self, does not make for a healthy functioning adult.

Originally Posted by worriedwife2 View Post
...His sister thinks I need to quit giving him ultimatums and not following through. I know she is right. I truly wish he would return to the man I married.
She is right. He will stop believing you. Plus if your daughter is witness to these ultimatums (Or if you lay down laws with her and don't stick to them) she will quickly learn that mommy doesn't mean what she says and she can basically behave in anyway and do what ever she wants. After all, when did she ever see you follow through with what you said?

Chris, your husband will never be the man he was when you married him. heck, I am not the same person I was a year ago, never mind 5 years ago, or 10! We all change and develop. The man you are with now IS YOUR HUSBAND, part of my recovery has been learning to live with reality, not on the possibilities of life, the past, or my hopes and dreams. If things stay the way they are now for the next ---- years, are you doing anything that will ensure you stay healthy and centred?

Sending you serenity...
Lily xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
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Old 07-24-2008, 09:23 AM
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"What would you do?"

"I called his boss at 2:00 a.m. and said he was vomiting and would be in at 6:00 a.m. I know I shouldn't have but I don't want him losing this job. It is very good."

Stop enabling him.

If he doesn't quit soon, he'll be losing his job anyway. By enabling, you're just delaying the inevitable. By delaying the inevitable, you're just giving him more opportunities to seriously harm himself or someone else.
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Old 07-24-2008, 09:40 AM
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Thanks everyone. I know all of what you say is true.

For some reason, I don't want to lose my house. My credit already is terrible because of the pain pill addiction he had in the past. If I lose this house, I am afraid I will never get another mortgage. Although I make decent money, my bills still outweigh my income alone. We filed bankruptcy last year, but decided to keep the house. It isn't even that nice. If I just left I don't know how that would work. The house isn't even worth what we owe. I don't know how that works if I left.

Thanks again,
Chris
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Old 07-24-2008, 09:47 AM
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I don't see a single post telling you to leave.

I see posts telling you can take steps to stop enabling and to step back from the drama that surrounds life with an active alcoholic.
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Old 07-24-2008, 09:54 AM
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One of the things I had to get past in my recovery was the all-or-nothing, black-or-white thinking.

In one thread, you have gone from calling work for him, and empty threats, to divorcing and losing your house. How about taking some small steps first? Like no more calling work for him. Like no more staying up all night worrying about what he's doing. Like no more saying you're going to leave when you have no intention of doing so.

You didn't get into this situation in a day, you are not going to make it better in a day. Think smaller, it's more doable.

L
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Old 07-24-2008, 09:55 AM
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I didn't mean for that to say you all told me to leave. I never meant that. I meant the enabling part. I knew by calling his boss I was enabling him. I want to leave, but I can't get the courage up. I really don't know what he would do because of our daughter. I am afraid he would flip out.
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Old 07-24-2008, 09:58 AM
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Thank you LaTeeDa.

I have always been an all or nothing type person in every aspect of my life. This is something I really need to work on within me. I really do need to take small steps. I think everything needs to be done at once like there is no tomorrow. I hate feeling this way. I just need to slow down.
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Old 07-24-2008, 09:58 AM
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Fear will indeed stop you from taking action. So deal with your fears. If you are seriously considering separting, have you talked to an attorney? That will give the facts about what may be possible if you go that route. If you are not ready to leave, what can you do to put your focus on you and your child rather than your AH? He will do what he will do regardless of you. So figure out what you can do, even little things to start, to improve your day to day life.
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Old 07-24-2008, 10:03 AM
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Originally Posted by worriedwife2 View Post
Thanks everyone. I know all of what you say is true.

For some reason, I don't want to lose my house. My credit already is terrible because of the pain pill addiction he had in the past. If I lose this house, I am afraid I will never get another mortgage. Although I make decent money, my bills still outweigh my income alone. We filed bankruptcy last year, but decided to keep the house. It isn't even that nice. If I just left I don't know how that would work. The house isn't even worth what we owe. I don't know how that works if I left.

Thanks again,
Chris
I'm facing a similar situation, in that our house is worth more than we owe, but I love this house and I don't want to leave it. It honestly tears my heart out, but I cannot afford it any longer. They say that among the top stress makers in a person's life, divorce, moving, changing jobs are right up there for wreaking havoc. In many of our cases, we're faced with all three of these problems and more.

It doesn't mean it's impossible, though, and sometimes you just have to break your life down into small steps. I've been working on this lately, and have found it helpful to put it down on paper. I've cried so hard that I can't even see what I'm doing, but I've forced myself to keep typing numbers into my spreadsheet, and descriptions of my goals and desires, so that I stay focused on the steps I need to take to find serenity in my life.

I'll share a few things with you that I know about having an "upside down" house, or a house that's worth less than what you owe. One of the first things you should do is get a comparative market analysis (CMA). Most real estate agents will do this for you for free. Get more than one. And, when the agent is there, ask them what the 3 most important things are that you could do to raise the value of your house. When you have all this information, you'll feel stronger because you're taking steps toward getting your life back, plus you'll be able to use this information positively. You may find out that your house is worth more than you think.

Next, if your house really is upside down, there are real estate investors who are willing to buy your house by simply taking over your mortgage. This may sound contrary to commonsense, but what the investor does is contact your bank and get a "short sale," which means that the bank allows them to buy out your mortgage at a reduced rate. You don't need to go the foreclosure route, as there are even more options than what I've mentioned here. If you get serious, contact me privately and I can put you in touch with investors in your area who can get you out of your situation.

I hope this information is helpful. As hard as it is, sometimes just thinking about practical stuff can help take your mind off the emotional pain.
Hugs!
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Old 07-24-2008, 10:10 AM
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One thing I learned over the past year as I went thru leaving my AH, getting a divorce and selling our house is that no THING is worth having a life that is miserable.

As it is, the house is selling for barely enough to cover the loans and I am not going to get much of anything from the proceeds. On paper, this is a loss of several hundred thousand dollars. My credit rating is shot to hell because I stopped making payments on the house 7 months ago because I couldn't pay the mortgage and my rent. I live in a 2 bedroom apartment instead of a 5 bedroom house.

And ya know what? I don't care. What I have gained in peace, joy and serenity is worth every penny.

If I had stayed with xAH, I would still have a house with equity. I would also be living with a man who refuses to admit he is an alcoholic let alone begin recovery, a man who refuses to get a job, a man who was emotionally distant and living in a fantasy world all his own. I would be hating my life and myself for accepting less than I deserve.

Yeah, it was well worth losing all the THINGS I left behind.
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Old 07-24-2008, 01:20 PM
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Originally Posted by worriedwife2 View Post
Hello,

I truly wish he would return to the man I married. Thanks for listening.
Please forgive me for being so blunt (and possibly out of line), I truly do not mean it that way. But I'm going to give you a saying that my son gave me when I used to say that about my AH (and trust me, I've said it many, many times). The advice is "crap in one hand, wish in the other. See which one fills up quicker."

Worriedwife - I was once where you are now, not wanting to lose my house, couldn't make it financially, etc. (Look back on my previous posts, I sound alot like you). I am making it, actually gonna pay bills tonite! I stopped worrying about when or how I was going to leave him. I put faith in my HP and it was worked out for me. Just hang in there (and maybe try some Alanon meetings, they helped me immensely).
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Old 07-25-2008, 03:13 AM
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I am so sorry for you. I know how you feel. I am going through the same thing with trying to save my house, because my husband is about to lose yet another job because of his drinking. I have also many times in the past called his boss to make excuses..it was so often that I invented a non existant "bleeding ulcer" for him that at times kept him out of work - he also had a family dr that had no problem giving him medical notes to go back to work without repercussions, that was until he finally did what I knew he would do all along and show up to work drunk. Well they sent him home and is currently on suspension. He is covered by a union - so they are fighting for him to keep his job, as they think he is recovering while on suspension. Yes he is getting therapy and yes he is taking a medication to curb the drinking and is doing much better but still drinking a couple of times a week to excess.

I stoped making excuses for him at work and with people he constantly lets down. It is just to exhausting. He is on his own. I know he will eventually lose the good job that he has (my AH) and there is nothing I can do about that.

I am doing what I can to save my house as I to do not want to destoy my financial future over this. It is hard. Some say it is an excuse not to leave, but the honest to god's truth is I don't want to ruin my credit, because then I really have no where to go. I work really hard and love my house - why should I allow him to take it away from me. He has already taken so much from me on an emotional level.

I wish I could give you some advise that will help. The first thing you need to do is stand behind your threats to leave. I stopped making them a while ago because I know that I am really not ready to leave yet becuase of what everyone would think. The shame of this whole thing kills me inside. I have however set boundries for myself and when ever he is drunk I remove myself from the situation. I no longer give him money once he is out for him to purchase booze, I no longer pick him up when he needs a ride, I no longer call his job to make excuses, I no longer baby him when he is sad and crying from the depression the booze seems to make worse. I recently also stopped monitoring his medication - if he wants to take it, it is entirely up to him. I am done being a mother.

I want a life for myself and even though still in this relationship, am slowly learning to just distance myself from it and do things for me that make me happy.

I know I am still a mess as I make excuses with MY own family for him all the time. Hopefully I can try and work on that next. The sooner it is all out in the open the sooner I can start to get rid of some of the shame and embarrassment I feelt.

I just wanted to let you know I understand exactly what you are going through.

One thing I want to say is if you know he is driving drunk you must call the police and report him. He does not have the right no matter how much he thinks he does at the time to possibly take the life of another family, or someones, mother, father, brother, sister, etc. Don't give him that power. You can take charge there and do the right thing to protect others on the road. It does not matter if he will be made or upset with you. Just do it. You will feel better inside knowing you may have just saved someones life.

A good friend of mine I work with. Her husband also a A was drining drunk, ran out of gas and decided to cross over a majory roadway. Well he was drunk and hit by a car and killed on inpact. This was over 5 years ago and she is still living with the pain of having not called the police to report that he was driving drunk - becasue she did know about it. This caused pain for her child who lost a rather and for the man and the family of the man that hit him - this man will have to live with this for the rest of his life. I know it is out of our control and they are going to do what they want regardless of what we say and do, but I always promised my self that if my ah drives drunk I am calling the police - I have done it in the past and thankfully he has not done it again, but should he choose to - I will do the same thing.

No one has the right to drive drunk and put the lives of others in jepoardy.

Email me if you ever want to talk. I wish you so much luck and will say a prayer for you. I am so sorry you also are going through this. You life sounds just like my life....
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Old 07-25-2008, 06:15 AM
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This is from the book Courage to Change ODAT in Al-Anon II ~ January 18

When I first heard that the best way to help an alcoholic was to focus on myself, I thought Al Anon was a heartless place where I would be forced to stop caring about my loved ones. I had decided never to return, but someone shared a thought that changed my mind. He said that although the desire to help another person can be well-motivated and compassionate, our old ways of “helping” don’t necessarily help. Al Anon offers a new way to help.

I examined my version of helping the alcoholic. I saw that when I covered her bad checks or made excuses for her, I kept her from facing the consequences of her actions. I actually was depriving her of opportunities to want to change.

I also had to consider why I felt so desperate unless I was helping. When I took a look at my motives, I found that it was my anxiety I didn’t want to face.

Today’s Reminder:

Is the help I offer truly loving or do I have other motives? Am I trying to change another person or get them to do what I want? Talking it over with my sponsor can offer perspective. My best hope for helping those I love really does begin when I focus on myself.

“In Al Anon we learn:
-Not to create a crisis;
-Not to prevent a crisis if it is in the natural course of events.” -Detachment
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Old 07-25-2008, 06:27 AM
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Originally Posted by worriedwife2 View Post
I truly wish he would return to the man I married.
I remember saying this and thinking it many times. My STBXAH told me he was the man I married. I just couldn't believe it- or didn't want to see the reality. The reality is that he is who he is right now. I'm not the person I was 13 years ago when we married either. When I opened my eyes to the reality- that's when I began to take action.

(((Take care)))
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Old 07-25-2008, 07:09 AM
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Thank you all. This is a really great place to be.:ghug3
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