Can Anyone Relate To This?

Old 12-30-2008, 07:43 PM
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Can Anyone Relate To This?

I realized that I had become a parent to the A (when he was drunk). I'd have to be at his beck and call every single night while he drank and I couldn't go to sleep until he was passed out. I wasn't allowed to do other things during the evening - oh - I could have, but he'd be yelling to me from the other room to come and listen to him (raging sometimes or just going on and on about something that was on his mind). I was also worried that he'd burn the place down with a cigarette, because sometimes he'd be holding the cigarette and drop it in his lap.

Then ... when he'd finally pass out, I needed time for myself. I needed several hours to unwind before I could even get to sleep myself. Whereas night time was supposed to be for winding down from the day, it was all wound up for me. As time progressed, I believe it affected my equilibrium and I got very sick.

Just wondering if others can relate to this feeling and how destructive this becomes over time ...
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Old 12-30-2008, 07:50 PM
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I can totally relate. After a few times of my AH passing out with a lit cigarette in his hand, I could no longer allow myself to fall asleep until I was sure he was out and the cigarettes were safely extinguished. I would make dinner and the kids and I would eat, but he wouldn't eat until 10 o'clock or so, so I could never clean up the kitchen/dishes until the next morning. I used to lay in bed crying, waiting for him to pass out so I could go make sure there were no burning butts. OMG, I can't even believe now that I lived that way. Thanks for the reminder. Whew!

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Old 12-30-2008, 07:53 PM
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Oh, and if I should happen to wake him up on my nightly "safety patrol" he would immediately light up a cigarette. Arrrrrrgh!

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Old 12-30-2008, 08:03 PM
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Originally Posted by LaTeeDa View Post
Oh, and if I should happen to wake him up on my nightly "safety patrol" he would immediately light up a cigarette. Arrrrrrgh!

Thanks - that's a good way of putting it. If I'd just had to do a 'safety patrol', it might not have been that bad, but I couldn't go and read a book or anything that relaxes me. I was in 'high alert mode' the whole evening ...

I should point out that I AM STILL CURRENTLY DOING THIS but I'm no longer working and am able to stay up until I can finally fall asleep ...

Oh - I just wish for a normal life again - it seems like such a distant memory now, and I often wonder if I'll ever be able to go to bed at 10:00 every night again.
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Old 12-30-2008, 08:15 PM
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I used to just trust our smoke detectors and go to sleep :P

I once found him passed out in a sitting position with a lighter in one hand and an unlit cigarette on his chest. Ugh.
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Old 12-30-2008, 08:48 PM
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I can totally relate, though fortunately my AH never passed out with a cigarette in hand, but there were many times he dropped a lit cigarette. Fortunately only one actually caused any damage, and that was just a hole in a sofa cushion. I, too, hadn't had a good night's sleep in years due to AH's snoring, yelling, tossing & turning after a drinking night. Even if I slept in another room, I could usually hear him. When I first moved out, I slept so much the first few weeks & realized I was catching up on all those lost nights of sleep. It's amazing how much happier & more productive I am now that I routinely get a full night's sleep - alone in my own bed (aside from some kitty company ;-)
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Old 12-31-2008, 04:15 AM
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My AH doesn't smoke (thank God), but I know what you mean about "babysitting". He demanded my constant attention, can't be on the phone or texting, talking to my adult sons, etc. Of course, he didn't say I "couldn't" do these things, he just made sure that he started an argument about them, or he sat right there and "stared" at me. If I left the room, he followed me. I work full time, and when I come home and want to "unwind", of course, I couldn't till he passed out. Like I shared at one of my groups - I'd rather have 6 two years olds full time than one A. It would be alot easier LOL.
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Old 12-31-2008, 04:26 AM
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I can also relate. I have stayed up many nights worrying that we would either get burned out or that he would run out of beer and try to get more. Beer runs at 2 in the morning aren't out of the ordinary here. I also went to sleep studies because I was falling asleep at work. Duh, I should have known it was due to lack of sleep at night. I was put on meds to keep me awake and all I need is to sleep somewhere else.
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Old 12-31-2008, 05:02 AM
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I'm another one who stayed up all night waiting for him to fall asleep. I would either stay up or go to bed but set my alarm to wake me so I could go down and check, it depended on how much he had drank, I didn't just have ciggies to contend with though, mine was a night time chef who liked to make food once he'd got drunk enough to go to sleep, I was worried about him leaving the cooker on too. Ugh the things I used to do!
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Old 12-31-2008, 05:35 AM
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Yup, when I was at the worst of my enabling, I acted more as a parent than a wife. It crept in to being slowly. First I took over the paying of bills 'cause he was forever paying them late. I provided all income to the household. Then I took over all responsibility for the household chores since he never did them (even tho he didn't work an was home all day). Then I gradually took over all responsibilities for everything, allowing him to be carefree and to wallow in his unacceptable behaviors. I would tell him when he had to do X and nag him til it was done or end up doing it myself. I would make excuses to others when he let them down in one way or another. My enabling behaviors were amazingly widespread now that I look back and can recognize them. I truly acted like a neurotic mother than an equal partner in a marriage.

Lord am I glad I am out of there and have learned how sick I was!
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Old 12-31-2008, 07:09 AM
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Oh yes, the area all around where he sat is covered in cigarette burns. The sheets got one too. And leaving the stove on, and breaking glass things in the kitchen for us to walk through in the morning.

Exhausting. And the exhaustion makes you even crazier, makes it almost impossible to make any decisions.

It's a horrible horrible way to live.

But then mine got sober, and a whole new set of problems arose.
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Old 12-31-2008, 07:11 AM
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Count me in too. I shudder to think about some of the "mothering" I did for him. Ick.
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