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Old 07-16-2009, 05:31 AM
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About Me

Hello All,
This post will be about me, I promise. I am moving ever so slowly toward asking my husband to move out. I know that is what I want. I need to be alone for awhile to rebuild myself, get stronger and discover what the next phase of my life will be about. I know that my husband and I are not compatible and that he has a disease that he powerless to control. I still love my husband, but love is not enough.

I don't feel angry at him on the surface, however there is an underlying anger that he allowed this to happen. I am worried about him and what will become of him - where will he go what will he do, how will he support himself etc.

I have told myself a million reasons why I stay, but the basic reason is fear I think. I am afraid of being alone. Weird, because I am already alone. I am afraid of change, even though I will have a job and a place to live etc. So the fear is there, but it is not as strong as it has been in the past.

I dread making him leave. I hate being the bad guy. I know that being with me is not even good for him or me. I know this must be done. I will do it. But I don't want to.

Be gentle with me as I so very slowly make this life change. I am damaged goods, but making incredible progress. I will make it to a better life. Soon.
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Old 07-16-2009, 08:51 PM
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(((( Rose ))))

Trust yourself that you will do the right thing at the right time.
We're here for you if you need us.
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Old 07-16-2009, 11:24 PM
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Fear of being alone is a big thing for many people, including me. When I told my AGF she needed to leave, I was afraid of being alone. But, like many others here, I was not physically alone (she was physically present) but I was alone emotionally, intellectually, spiritually and in practically (no help in getting anything done).

In reality, I was not afraid of losing the relationship, but afraid of losing my hopes and dreams for the future and what I imagined life would be.

I have come to understand, that by asking her to leave, I not only stopped enabling her, but also gave me back my life. Today, I don't live in constant reaction to what she is doing and I am beginning to live for myself. I am shaping a new imagined future for myself and my children. One that is free of addiction and codependence.

I don't know what will happen when she gets out of treatment. I have to leave it in God's hands (even thought that is REALLY hard).

Be strong, take care of yourself, and look to build a new dream.
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Old 07-16-2009, 11:41 PM
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Just wanted to say I don't even know you, but I was so amazed by your strength and determination. You will get through this.
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Old 07-16-2009, 11:59 PM
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Do you have a support network you can turn to if and when you leave?

My xabf and I ended it July 4th, and yes, it's been a little rough not having someone come home to me after work that I can cook for, cuddle with, etc. But on the other hand, I feel relieved to no longer be up all night worrying because I got text messages from him that say "Ixty drk gtgg in crr". I don't have to listen to him promise me yet again that he won't do cocaine, then a couple weeks later have him confess that oops, sorry, he did again because he was drunk.

I don't have to worry that he might end up hooking up with a girl at the bar cuz he's too trashed to realize what he's doing, and bring me home a disease.

I don't have to worry that he's going to get behind the wheel of his car after too much to drink, like he did when I came back from a vacation and he was in such a rush to see me, he couldn't wait til he sobered up.

Those are just a few things I don't miss.

Ultimately, we as humans are always alone. We come into the world alone. We die alone. It doesn't have to be lonely-it's a lot about how you look at it. Yes, I live alone but I have a wonderful network of friends and people who care about me. And, I found love before-I am sure I can find it again. And this time I will find someone who knows that the meaning of true love is to first, love yourself.
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Old 07-17-2009, 06:04 AM
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Thanks all for your support.
Trainwreck - you got where I am exactly. It's amazing how universal this situation is. At this point, I don't doubt that we would be better off apart - both of us - but initiating the separation, when I know he has no where to go etc is SO HARD. So hard to do something that will cause someone else pain, even if it is good for me. I know you know how that is. But I must take strength from the knowledge that this might be the best thing I can do for him - as well as the best thing I can do for me.

GiveLove, I am working toward trusting myself to know when to move forward.

Sandrawg, what you said about being alone is so very true. I know I can do this, if I can just get past causing him discomfort.

Thank you all for listening and caring.
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Old 07-17-2009, 06:22 AM
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Rose,

To get through this, I had to make a fundamental shift in my thinking. In my case, she did have somewhere to go.... rehab. SHE had to DECIDE to go. She was angry because what she wanted to do... stay in the home, get loaded and high, have me pay for it, and have me clean up all her problems, I was not willing to do.

Your husband has choices too. You are not causing his discomfort. His addition is causing this. And you did not cause his addiction. And right now, in his mind, the cost of continuing drinking is less than the cost of stopping. Alcoholism will cost people their marriages, their extended families, their jobs, their savings and sometimes their lives.

I had to accept that unless my AGF hit bottom, she would never have the motivation to stop. And, as long as she was living in the home, she would never hit bottom.

I also had to accept that FOR ME, she had to leave. Living with someone in active addiction was destroying ME and the kids.

My act was one of love. Love of myself, love of my children, and in a very real sense, love for her.

Be strong. Care for yourself.
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Old 07-17-2009, 07:57 PM
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Trainwreck - you just gave me a wake up call. I know I've heard it before, but it's as if I read it for the first time here. "Today, I don't live in constant reaction to what she is doing and I am beginning to live for myself."

My new mantra - Act, don't react! Let's see if I can do it.
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Old 07-19-2009, 10:18 AM
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Hi all,
The past two days have been hard. Yesterday I asked my husband to leave, we didn't argue. I don;t think he believed me, which I understand because I have said that before and not followed through. Today when I came home from church he wanted to take our only car once again to the bars. I said no. We had a fight, I cried, and he is staying home and drinking at home. Big prize for me.
Tomorrow he plans to take money from his IRA and get a room in town so he can walk to the bars etc. I know this is a mistake, and want no part of helping him do this. I guess what I am saying that this is not as easy as asking him to leave. It is complicated, hard, and I am afraid.
Please Lord help me get through this. I really want a better life. Thanks for listening.
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Old 07-19-2009, 10:26 AM
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My biggest fear in life was being alone. I settled for some horrible painful things, all for the sake of not being alone.

When I finally made that commitment to myself that I was no longer going to sell myself short, and I was actually going to start working on me, things began to change for the better.

I found out I'm a pretty neat gal!

:ghug2 :ghug2
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Old 07-20-2009, 10:26 AM
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Originally Posted by Rose56 View Post
I really want a better life.
Then you should do whatever it takes to have a better life. I post this only in the interest of being helpful. I've seen a number of people writing about feeling guilty for leaving an alcoholic, or hesitating to do so.

My ex-wife struggled for years with my alcoholism. She would confront me with my lies, tell me how much it was hurting her and our son, hold out evidence of my drinking, leave me alone, etc. My point is, none of it mattered to me when I was actively drinking. I didn't hear it and I didn't care. None of her actions had any effect whatsoever on my drinking.

One day a guy pulled up beside me in the parking lot at work, handed me a divorce summons, and informed me that I couldn't go home. The bank accounts had been emptied and there was a no contact order effective immediately. There it was. Clothes on my back, couldn't see my son, no options left for me. This also had no effect on my drinking.

I didn't think that was very fair. At the time, I felt wronged, harmed, cheated, and angry. But it ended the debate. She no longer had to deal with me. It effectively removed her from the damage I was causing. This had an immediate effect for her life.

I'm not advocating that everyone leave their alcoholic partners. Each situation is unique. However, a lot of situations share some common features. The solution is almost always going to be taking actions for oneself. Not action to change the alkie, but action to make your own life better.

There are a couple of things I've come to regard as universal truths from my own recovery and from working with a lot of newly sober alcoholics. One is, there is nothing a partner can do to change an alcoholic's drinking. Nothing. Another is that alcoholics who sober up, but do nothing to transform their lives, are just as damaging. Not drinking is just as bad as drinking for real alcoholics. And last, change is self-evident. If an alcoholic is truly recovering, it will be obvious. A fundamental change will occur and it will be noticable. If it's not, there is probably very little recovery occuring, and the problems will likely continue. If you have to wonder if the alkie is recovering, then they aren't.
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Old 07-20-2009, 11:19 AM
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Rose, the fear of the unknown is not uncommon. We all fear what we don't know. Change is hard because of that. I've been down the path you are about to travel, and yes it is scary at times... but it will be OK.

As for your husband, well, you know you didn't cause his disease, and you know you can't control it. As for "leaving him out in the cold" - I will tell you there are many resources available to those who choose to find them.

1. He can stay with friends
2. He can stay at the salvation army, for free. They offer help to people suffering from addictions, and destitution (again, not your causing).
3. AA meetings are free, anywhere in the USA. Perhaps the world too, I don't know.
4. As you know, there are many "self help" sites he can get support from if he participates.
5. He IS an adult and has free will to go or do what he likes. Adults can make their own choices and destiny.

Now you mentioned that he will cash in his retirement/IRA. Document that, as it IS marital property — you'll want to have proof of that waste of marital assets if you proceed with divorce. (If you are like me, or any other hard working adult who has worked hard to get what you wanted in life... (home, belongings, lifestyle)... you value what you've earned and deserve your fair share and then some.

Lastly, again... try not to feel sorry for him. Nobody put the bottle to his mouth except him. It was all his free will. We reap what we sow. This so applies to the alcoholic.

One more thing I'd like to add is: take one day at a time. Each day it gets a little easier, and soon you'll be out of the shadows and back in the sunlight!
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Old 07-20-2009, 11:47 AM
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Quote from someone I saw on Oprah years ago:
"Leap and the net will appear."
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Old 07-21-2009, 06:04 AM
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Thanks friends for your feedback.
Keith, I copied some of your thoughts into my notebook, they are very helpful.
Trying2, yes he is an adult and he can deal with it.

Another issue I have struggled with in the past is how bad is too bad. He is not awful all the time, in fact most of the day he is helpful and does chores around the house etc. So I wonder, is this really so bad? But the answer always comes when he is out until 5am with our only car - or when he is moderately drunk and just plain nasty - or when he is negative about all of life. Then the answer is yes, it is bad enough.

I finally got myself a sponsor, and have been talking to her for the past few days. We will being working the steps this week and she has suggested that I attend open AA meetings and more Alanon meetings. I will do this.

I know that we need to separate, I am avoiding the pain of making this happen. I pray for courage to move forward.
Thanks again for your help.
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Old 07-21-2009, 06:36 AM
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There are a couple of things I've come to regard as universal truths from my own recovery and from working with a lot of newly sober alcoholics. One is, there is nothing a partner can do to change an alcoholic's drinking. Nothing. Another is that alcoholics who sober up, but do nothing to transform their lives, are just as damaging. Not drinking is just as bad as drinking for real alcoholics. And last, change is self-evident. If an alcoholic is truly recovering, it will be obvious. A fundamental change will occur and it will be noticable. If it's not, there is probably very little recovery occuring, and the problems will likely continue. If you have to wonder if the alkie is recovering, then they aren't.
Thanks so much for that bit keithj, it's so very true.
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Old 07-21-2009, 06:41 AM
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Seems to me you're making a better life now. You're making decisions for yourself...hard as they are to carry out...
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Old 07-21-2009, 06:52 AM
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Rose,

You may actually find that you have been grieving the end of this relationship for a long time. What you feel when you finally seperate yourself from him, may be relief.

In my situation, when I temporarily left with the children, I was relieved. I was able to relax and think. Thinking is what I really needed to do. I then got my A to agree to leave the house so that the children and I could have the space and be in charge of the critters. His reaction was like Keith stated. (thanks keith for your honesty)

I'm not saying that you are finished grieving. It is a process. I want you to realize that there is a peacefulness that comes from taking actions to take care of yourself. You will respect yourself and accept yourself. That brings serenity.
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Old 07-21-2009, 08:04 PM
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Good for you! You are taking some good steps, Rosie.

As for worrying that you AH will move to an apartment close to a bar...I would say, he is going to drink regardless, right? You are setting him free to make his own decisions, and if he decides to move next to a bar (which is consequently what my xabf did as well. He lives a block away from the bar so he can get blotto and not have to drive)...this is not because you kicked him out. When he's at home, he still drinks just as much, right? But when he's home, you're enabling his drinking.

Once he's out of the house, and I know this is hard, it's time to let go. Let go and let him make his own decisions. Moving next to a bar is a decision made as the result of his disease, not as a result of anything you did.

Hugs to you.

Originally Posted by Rose56 View Post
I finally got myself a sponsor, and have been talking to her for the past few days. We will being working the steps this week and she has suggested that I attend open AA meetings and more Alanon meetings. I will do this.

I know that we need to separate, I am avoiding the pain of making this happen. I pray for courage to move forward.
Thanks again for your help.
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Old 07-22-2009, 03:14 AM
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Hi Rose,

My heart goes out to you. I thought I might share with you a little of my story because I do relate to your thoughts and feelings that you've written here.

As one who left my husband several weeks ago. We are relatively newly married - I'm not sure whether it makes it more difficult or easier than if we'd been married for eons, or just different - and I am 24wks pregnant with our first child.

Like you, I was initially fearful of being alone. Until that point, I had chosen to live with him in a life of misery in preference to being alone. Now, looking back on my weeks without him, I would choose being alone to choosing the life that I had with him before this. That is SO sad - even as I write this, it's terribly sad and disappointing for our young married life. But life was not only miserable, but it was not peaceful - and I am relishing the peace that has been restored to my heart and to my home. And I am beginning to feel more like the person I used to be - rather than this person I was beginning to loathe, caught up in heated dramas, chaos and arguments that seemed to be our daily life.

His daily choices still affect me, but not nearly to the same degree as they used to, of course. Setting boundaries with him has made me become the "bad guy" as you put it - and that has been difficult on the one hand. He is good at trying to make me feel guilty for setting boundaries, and I am good at taking the bait. Until I realised that by not setting boundaries, I was not loving myself, not loving my baby and not loving my husband by allowing him to continue the way he was without any real consequence. In fact, I was perpetuating the problem - almost being party to it. Setting boundaries with my husband has made me feel stronger, and has given me self-respect. Surprisingly, I feel my husband's respect for me has also grown - even though he plays the guilt games with me still.

I don't know if any of that helps, but please know that you are not alone in this journey. For me personally, I have surrounded myself as best I can with support after separating from my husband. I could not continue without that support. I would recommend that you work on that and put as much in place as you can before separating. Support may be in the form of close friendships/family you can see on a regular basis who know about your plans and will support you in it, Al-Anon, a support group, a counsellor, a church group, seeing a sponsor...

Keep us in touch with how you get on. I personally would like to offer my support seeing as we are in a similar place in our lives. Please feel free to message me personally, I'd be happy to be there for you where I can.
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Old 07-22-2009, 03:29 AM
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P.S. If you're interested in reading about my story so far, it's here:
The Diary of an Alcoholic's Partner
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