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Built on lies...

Old 08-09-2008, 06:20 PM
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Freed from the anguish
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Built on lies...

As some of you have already read my recent posts, my husband put down the bottle and proclaimed he is done drinking for life. He sees the destruction it's been on his life, on our marriage, everything. He and I will reach our second wedding anniversary in a couple weeks...

But just today, while reading my books about taking care of me and what I want/need... it hit me like a ton of bricks... he's been lying to me all this time. He's been saying what I wanted to hear everyday since we've been together, to keep me here. I stuck around believing that he really would make me happy... and I loved him SOOO much. He confessed to me today that he drank behind my back quite a lot. Most nights he'd wait until I'd gone to bed, then he'd drink himself silly and crawl into bed hours later.

I feel like our entire marriage is founded on my love and his lies. And while I want to believe he is a changed man and will not go back to his ways... I don't want to wait around to be lied to someday again. I want to be free. I want to be happy. I don't want to hurt and be afraid anymore.

It's so refreshing to be a part of Al-Anon and reading these books - all of them say "Focus on YOU. What do YOU need?" I know I need counseling. I know I need to stop pretending that everything is ok.

I've been openly crying a lot since he confessed to me he is an alcoholic. I had no idea. Between his convincing speeches that he was in control of his drinking, and the stigma TV has on "teaching" you what an alcoholic is/looks like, I really believed my AH was not an alcoholic. He argued with me time and again, and made me feel guilty for even suggesting he drank too much. I'm such an idiot for not standing up for myself back then. But now it's twice as hard - because he's NOT drinking now.

Then I cry, and I feel the need to get away and figure out who I am again. What am I doing? Who am I? What do I want for ME? And I hurt so much, I just want someone to comfort me. And there he is. Comforting me while I cry. Well, I can't much tell him I want to leave him if I'm sobbing on his shoulder, now can I? I don't know what to do. I feel like if I stay with him, he wins, because he got to lie and hurt me over and over, and I stayed anyway.
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Old 08-09-2008, 06:53 PM
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I understand exactly what you are saying and felt/feel the same way. From my experience, mine said, lied, etc. for many years and I felt/feel totally duped. However, I chose also how to react and my reaction was to stay--it was easier for me to ignore at the time. Now I choose not to. I don't have a plan as yet and I have two small children, but I know I can't live like this much longer before it starts to really take it's toll.

I'm working on me and gathering my strength--in between moments where I feel as if I'm losing my mind. But I know I'm not--I know my mind and it sounds like you do as well. Keep reading and working on yourself. Incidentally I found that the more independent I become and the more I choose me, the more his guilt, verbal abuse, etc. heightens. You may find this as well. Most of it is manipulation I've found.

It's interesting that we feel guilty for choosing ourselves when they choose themselves time and time again. My therapist told me a story about a relationship she was in with an alcoholic. It took her a long time to leave and the thing that drove her to it was her beloved bicycle. To get away from his "crazymaking" she took bike rides. That bicycle was her salvation. As she detached more, he became more angry and abusive toward her. One day he told her that he was going to take that f-ing bike and destroy it. She finally thought--how can I stay with a man who will go to such lengths to destroy something I love so much? She and the bicycle left quickly after.
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Old 08-09-2008, 06:56 PM
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Active alcoholics lie! It is possible for an alcoholic to turn their life around with lots and lots of work. You do need to work on yourself. He needs to work on himself.
Alanon is a great support system with advice derived from experience.
This site can also provide great support. Knowing you are not alone can be a great relief and comfort. Hope you find the strength to do what is right for you. LOL
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Old 08-09-2008, 07:23 PM
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I was exactly where you are a year ago. My ex did not stay sober but after 16 years I was just too tired to deal with any more. He may choose recovery but it's ok for you to leave regardless of what happens.
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Old 08-09-2008, 10:19 PM
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I am not excusing what he has done, but when I base my happiness on what another person does or does not do, I am bound to feel terrible and hopeless. Regardless of what he does or says you can choose to build a life for yourself based on you supporting you. Not you supporting him. But you supporting you.

If you have begun attending Al Anon, now would probably be a good time to find yourself a sponsor and make some friends in your group. These people will help you and show you how to create the happy life you want for yourself, regardless of your choice to leave him or stay with him.

Both my relationships were with A's who were sober and AA members, so soberity isn't a 'cure all' even though at first it may seem like it. I had to learn not to be the 'meeting police' the 'sponsor police' and 'steps police'. And I did this by learning from other Al Anon memebers, getting a sponsor and working their steps.
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Old 08-09-2008, 10:41 PM
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Hello there JustMe, and pleased to "meet" you.

My ex lied to me too. Not only about her pill addiction, but also about the married men she was seeing, the reasons why she got fired, and on and on. When I finally figured it all out I was also overwhelmed with confusion and pain. It has to be the most painful thing I have ever been thru.

What helped me the most is that little slogan that says "One day at a time". I had some huge decisions to make, much like you do. I had to stop trying to make _all_ the decisions _today_ and give myself permission to take a little time. I was in no shape to think clearly, never mind decide what the whole rest of my life was going to be. I made a list of all the things I needed to do, and then picked out only _one_.

Just one thing.

I did that one thing, and did not think about all the rest until I was done with the one. When I was finished with the one then I did the next, and then the next. First I did the dishes, then I fed the animals, then I did laundry, then I went to a meeting, and so on.

That helped me get settled, get the confusion out of my head by focusing on just simple tasks one at a time. Once my head was clear, then I was able to think clearly and start making the big decisions. One at a time.

Keep posting here, JustMe. We have all been where you are today, each in our own way. You will make it thru this nightmare and come out the other side just like the rest of us have. Just like it says in the al-anon books, you will make a good life for yourself, whether your husband drinks or not, whether you decide to stay or not, just like all the rest of us have.

Mike
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Old 08-10-2008, 07:36 AM
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Hi again, JustMe -
Your situation is so much like mine was. I still think about it from time to time. The lying was going on long before I discovered the drinking problem. My xah also drank at night in his workshed and would either pass out there or crawl into bed after I went to sleep. He also engaged in binge drinking when I was out of the house in the evening at classes or whatever. I thought he was desperately ill because he would be so strange when I came home. I never thought he might be drunk! I have an extremely stunted sense of smell - so I was a perfect person to be married to a drunk!

Anyway, the lying was really distressing and once I figured out what was going on, it turned me into a person I didn't want to be - looking around in places for hidden bottles and receipts to see if he was still drinking despite him saying he wasn't (he was, of course).

Wow, now I can see how crazy it all was. In spite of all his lying, I still felt such loyalty and love for him. But now I think it was always one-sided. Alcoholics don't care. At least that's what he told me in a lucid moment. He knew his behavior was screwing everything up, but it didn't matter to him. That's what he told me. How can anyone have a relationship with someone like that? You care so much for someone - and that's how they reciprocate?

When I was in it, saving the marriage was the most important thing in the world to me. Now, taking care of myself is the most important thing to me. I do have regrets but I try not to dwell on them - since really, this moment right now is all we really have - and I want to feel good, safe and healthy now.

DesertEyes is right - just take it one step at a time, each day make a little bit of progress (or sit on the sofa and just do nothing - believe me, I did plenty of that as well). You have a wonderful bright future ahead, all you have to do is choose it.
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Old 08-10-2008, 10:15 AM
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"Just one thing.

I did that one thing, and did not think about all the rest until I was done with the one. When I was finished with the one then I did the next, and then the next. First I did the dishes, then I fed the animals, then I did laundry, then I went to a meeting, and so on.

That helped me get settled, get the confusion out of my head by focusing on just simple tasks one at a time. Once my head was clear, then I was able to think clearly and start making the big decisions. One at a time."


Thank you for that Desert Eyes!
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Old 08-11-2008, 07:47 AM
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JustMe,

There are so many of us who have found ourselves in the same place. It helped me a lot to learn that he wasn't doing it TO me, he was just doing it. Alcoholics drink because they are alcoholics. Alcoholics lie because they are alcoholics.

You really can have a better life whether your H decides to continue drinking or not. Keeping the focus on you and not on him allows you to make some healthy choices and changes.

Are you able to find any local Al Anon meetings? They really made a difference for me. Going to Al Anon saved my life, pure and simple.

Hugs
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Old 08-11-2008, 02:19 PM
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Thank you all. I have attended 2 AlAnon meetings in the past couple days. I will be attending another one tonight, and then back to the Wednesday one (my first one). I'm hoping to find a group that feels like "home" and make it my regular weekly stop. But I do know where others are in my area so if I need something and it's not Wednesday, I'm not lost.

I really appreciate all your help. I'm really working hard at NOT taking on all the decisions today and I'm really fighting to NOT focus on him and what he's doing. It's just so hard when you marry someone, and PLAN on your lives working together for the common future you want. I CAN take care of myself without his help, but I CANNOT have children without his help - and I do NOT want to be/become a single mom by trusting him to stay sober, then having him get tired of it or something. It scares the crap out of me. It's what my dad did to my mom. She got married, the decided to have kids after a few years, then he didn't want to do anything but drink and party and do drugs every night of the week and on the weekends. When she put her foot down and said he needed to help provide for his children, he served HER the divorce papers. I don't want to follow in her footsteps, and some days I feel like I already have...

But I don't need to start a family just yet, so I'm focusing on my current next steps: Attend Al-Anon regularly, finish reading "Codependent No More", and find a counselor to help me work through all my repressed emotions. As the song goes, "I will get there". Thanks to all of you for your love and support.
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Old 08-11-2008, 02:58 PM
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But I don't need to start a family just yet, so I'm focusing on my current next steps: Attend Al-Anon regularly, finish reading "Codependent No More", and find a counselor to help me work through all my repressed emotions.
Wowzer! You're ahead of the curve already. Just for today you can do this!
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