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Would like to share my story

Old 09-17-2010, 11:23 AM
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Would like to share my story

I first found these forums last year when my AH of 12 years was deep in the depths of disease. He's military, and almost lost his job and pension when he blacked out on the job and used a government credit card to fill his gas tank. Thankfully his commander offered to give him a second chance if he would go to inpatient treatment at the VA hospital. My husband was deeply humiliated by the experience and by the threat of losing his military career, and finally became serious about seeking recovery. What followed was the 9 happiest months of my marriage, when I was finally able to see the man I was so in love with reemerge from the despair of active alcoholism.

Eventually AH had to go away for a month for military training, and the man that returned home wasn't the kind, thoughtful, loving man that had left, but the selfish, impulsive, deceitful man that he had been while actively drinking. Of course he lied and denied and claimed that he hadn't relapsed, but my gut told me otherwise, even though I desperately wanted to believe him.

For the past few months, more and more often I'm recognizing the alcoholic behavior returning. I recently discovered that he's been lying about going to meetings, and that he's been borrowing money from his dad that I had no idea about. It all came to a head Sunday night, when I tried to talk to him about my concerns. He accused me of cornering him, and left the house. He's been staying at a friends for a week now, and cleared out the checking account, leaving me with 74 cents in the bank. The bank records say he's spent over $1200 in less than a week, mostly at bars and liquor stores.

So here I am, back again, and praying for the resolve to do what I need to do to break this cycle. As I'm sure many of you know, it's financially hard to leave, as well as emotionally. He's never physically abused me, and when he's sober he's a great dad and the kindest, most loving husband I could ever ask for. Of course, the moments of sobriety are coming further and further apart, and I'm now left to deal with the soulless monster that has taken over my beloved husband's body. I once told him I wish he would hit me so it would make it easier to leave. How's that for sick thinking? Anyway, just wanted to share, and thank you for having me.
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Old 09-17-2010, 11:37 AM
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Hi Hurtingagain and Welcome back.

I just wanted to send you some big virtual HUGS...I remember what it's like to wish your AH would hit you so you wouldn't have to don that Bad Guy Mantle and be the awful one who leaves.

I'm a card-carrying Codie and I have to say, I HATE being the bad guy. But I've done it and I'll keep doing it for the sake of my little girl. I remember my XAH's protests when he felt indignant that I wanted to leave him..."But I never even touched you! You don't know how good you've got it...". Yeah honey, I've got it sooooo good being robbed of thousands of $$$ to pay for your booze and cigarettes, I've got it REAL good picking up the endless cans of empties, the broken glasses and sticky alcohol spills from when you shake too much...yah it's a girl's dream marriage.

/rant.

I know how you feel. Perhaps it's time to go to an Al-Anon meeting, even if it's just an online one to start with? You sure could use some support.

Keep posting and reading! SR is always here.
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Old 09-17-2010, 11:38 AM
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Hi Hurtingagain-


I once told him I wish he would hit me so it would make it easier to leave. How's that for sick thinking?

Pretty sick.

But a good statement to bring up to a counselor - I mean if that doesn't get a session going in a solid deep direction I don't know what would!!

(((((hugs)))) Yes, all our As are lovable and wonderful when they are not drinking. But those crumbs are not worth all the suffering and damage that is being done riding the roller coaster just to get to those brief moments.

But your life and your kids lives are worth fighting for and worth getting to a healthy place!

The past is gone. You are free in THIS moment.

Peace,
B
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Old 09-17-2010, 12:05 PM
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He's military, and almost lost his job and pension when he blacked out on the job and used a government credit card to fill his gas tank. Thankfully his commander offered to give him a second chance if he would go to inpatient treatment at the VA hospital. My husband was deeply humiliated by the experience and by the threat of losing his military career, and finally became serious about seeking recovery. What followed was the 9 happiest months of my marriage, when I was finally able to see the man I was so in love with reemerge from the despair of active alcoholism.
HurtingAgain,

Your husband will lose his pension and career if he does not return to recovery.
I was active duty and sent to treatment. There were specific things I was ordered to do and not do after treatment. One of the not do's obviously was drink again.

If I drank again, I would be dishonorably discharged from the Army.

If he thinks treatment was humiliating, how would a dishonorable discharge feel?
He is throwing away 12 years of duty, his future, you and your kids future.

I know there is not much you can do with an alcoholic determined to self destruct, as my ex husband was demoted and told not to re enlist after an alcoholic related incident.
But there is something you can do for yourself.
Go to the chaplain and explain your situation. Someone might be able to convince him to get back on track without another incident going on his record.

The Army is willing to help those who want help, but do not want to waste resources on those who don't. I went to an inpatient rehab in Landstuhl Germany, six weeks long. The best thing that ever happened to me.

Get help for yourself. Is there an AlAnon on post? Got to the meetings and find out what others have done in your position. You will get the best experience, strength and hope from those who have been there.

Beth

:ghug3
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Old 09-17-2010, 12:28 PM
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First of all, thank you so much to those who have replied to my post. This is a secret I've been keeping for years, and I've told none of my friends or family what I've been dealing with (even though I'm sure they can guess on their own). It feels great to have some sort of outlet and to know I'm not alone in this. I have tried Al-Anon last year, but stopped going because I thought AH was "better." I know now that I have to get myself better too, no matter what AH chooses to do.

As far as the military issue goes, I've been struggling with this part especially. I know detaching means letting the alcoholic make his own mistakes and clean up his own messes, but in this case, the choices AH makes are going to seriously affect the lives of myself and my children. If AH gets a dishonorable discharge due to his drinking, not only will we have the substantial loss of income to deal with, but the loss of our housing, the pension and our medical insurance. So detaching from the situation is especially hard knowing how much is at stake. He won't get another second chance...

Thank you for the advice on seeking out a chaplain. I've been afraid to contact anyone in the military for fear of it harming his career, not to mention the "detachment" issue. I've thought about reaching out to the VA or one of his friends in his unit who helped smooth things over the last time, but the chaplain seems like the best way to go. Can I ask if any concerns I may bring up to him will remain confidential?

Again, I appreciate everyone's words of encouragement more than I can say.
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Old 09-17-2010, 12:34 PM
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You could always run your face into his fist.
See how dumb that sounds.
Are you understanding yet?
Much love. You and your kids deserve better.
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Old 09-17-2010, 12:35 PM
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Chaplains, psychological counselors, doctors, etc are all obliged to keep information shared with them confidential.

Yes, ask to make sure YOU feel safe - but I am so glad to hear you are willing to go speak to someone! Alcoholism is a family disease - it makes everyone in the family nuts and sick, and it thrives in denial and isolation - in fact part of the alcoholic dynamic that is quickly set up whether you are in the military or not - is "this needs to be a secret - we don't talk about that elephant in the living room!"

My trust issues ran deep from growing up with an A father. There is a lot of good healing in your future if you can accept help and embrace recovery for yourself and your kids, and you said it perfectly yourself:
I know now that I have to get myself better too, no matter what AH chooses to do.

Keep posting - stick around - collectively here on SR we have seen everything - you are NOT alone!
Peace & (((hugs)))
B

P.S. Just wanted to encourage you to breathe and take one day at a tiime - if you focus on these thoughts:
the choices AH makes are going to seriously affect the lives of myself and my children
you can quickly feel overwhelmed and helpless and defeated! The choices you can control and that can result in a bright stable future for you and your kiddos are the choices YOU make.

So, Easy Does It! Baby steps!
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Old 09-17-2010, 12:57 PM
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As far as the military issue goes, I've been struggling with this part especially.
Yes, and I am so sorry you have to deal with this.
But, go to the Chaplain and what you say to him will be held in confidence.
This I know.
And like Bernadette says, take it easy on yourself and don't let this overwhelm you.
You can do this. One baby step at a time.

Beth
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