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Broke up with alcoholic boyfriend

Old 09-29-2010, 12:17 PM
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Unhappy Broke up with alcoholic boyfriend

I just broke up with my boyfriend Jack last night during dinner. I told him I was leaving him bc he is still drinking. I told him to not contact me until he is 6 months sober. We been going out for 5 months. I recognized his drinking problem after I looked up symptoms on the web. He told me once he would drink 12 big cans of beer so he could sleep. Here is the thing. He is highly-functional during work, earns more than enough to support his alcohol drinking, constantly works out, but when he's drunk, he is not in control. His humor turns dark and starts making jokes at people's expenses. He can get violent if someone makes fun of him when he's drunk. During bowling, he made fun of a Jewish couple. Another time, he screamed at me to get out of his house because I was talking to a girl friend, but he thought I was cheating. After that incident, I told him he needs help and he decided to get treatment, but he has been kicked out of rehab for cocaine abuse (which he quit), dropped out of 1 outpatient program already and another one which he signed up but never showed up. This time, he signed up at Payne Whitney, which is probably one of the best psychiatric center in New York, but I don't think he's going to follow through based on his previous tries. Jack is very affectionate, thoughtful, nice, and expressive when he is not drinking. That's the person I fell for, but when he's drinking, I don't even know him.

But I held in so much resentment. I've tried everything. I tried to ignore his drinking. I tried to keep him away from getting beer. I tried to even drink his drinks. I don't do any of this stuff anymore because instead of feeling resentful, I felt tired. My sister who is Bi-Polar and a psychiatric med student, gave him a talk on Saturday and he seemed like he genuinely understood what he had to do. Jack revealed his therapists diagnosed him with Depression. But then on Sunday, when I stepped out to go to Starbucks at 6pm and waited for him to get ready and leave the house, he wondered into a bar in the meantime. He didn't bother to come see me until 8:30pm. Did he chose alcohol over me? By that time, I called him and told him I was leaving. He begged for me to wait for him while he called his car service, but I was so angry I didn't talk to him that night or the following day. He says "I cut off communication too easily" and that I am unfair.

He left me voicemails and texts last night saying the reason why I end my relationships so early (i never gotten past 6 months) is bc I don't give anyone a chance. He also said I need to have more faith in him. Jack says he has been making an effort like signing up for Payne Whitney (but he got his diagnosis last week and still drank the same week).

I am lost. Do I give up too easily? I feel guilty for leaving him because I do love him. Should I give him another chance? IS he going to change? Jack has never gone to treatment before till he met me.

I been reading the stories in this forum and it seems like our alcoholic loved ones, we kinda relapse time and again. I don't want to suffer, but this guilt is also suffering.
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Old 09-29-2010, 12:38 PM
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IMO you did the right thing, you can't change him, he needs to change him. Further, he should work on learning how to live happily sober and single first, then work on a developing a healthy relationship. I also wouldn't put too much thought into the length of your relationships when it comes to this one, no need beating yourself up over his problem. He is just deflecting his problem back to you trying to make it seem like you are the one with a problem.
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Old 09-29-2010, 12:50 PM
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I want to wipe my hands clean but I worry about him. I feel if I could help him and have a positive influence on him, I should try. He doesn't really have any healthy, functioning friends.
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Old 09-29-2010, 12:55 PM
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Hi Dallying and WELCOME to SR! This is an awesome place to find support and some off-colour humour. I hope you keep coming back.

First off, let me remind you of the 3 C's of addiction, if you don't already know them:
You didn't CAUSE it
You can't CURE it
You can't CONTROL it

I think you're already coming to the realization that you aren't going to be able to control or cure your boyfriend's drinking. The only power you have is over yourself, and you're doing awesome by realizing now (before you're married, living with him, or have children) that you don't want this in your life.

I know how hard it is, but please be gentle with yourself and let go of the guilt he has placed on you. The whole "you didn't give me a chance" is bull.

Let's spin this differently: you haven't made it past 6 months in a relationship because you know what you want, you're honest, and you don't waste time on jerks (which the world is full of). My problem was the opposite: I couldn't say no to whatever jerk I happened to be seeing and ended up in loooooong painful relationships with unhealthy men.

Have you considered going to Al-Anon or counselling to get some support?

also, I would strongly suggest you get your hands on a copy of "Codependent No More" by Melodie Beattie. It's an eye-opening read...

Keep posting! SR is always here.
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Old 09-29-2010, 01:00 PM
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Dallying402, I agree it's sad, isn't it? To think of how much better his life might be if he got some help and stopped getting sucked into the drinking. There's really nothing you can do about it, though, as sad as it is.
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Old 09-29-2010, 01:55 PM
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Dallying, Welcome to SR.
You have come to a wonderful place, filled with folks who have so much experience and wisdom to share. Keep reading and posting, and I also highly recommend Al Anon. They put out a great book called Courage to Change. It's just daily meditations, but very much about putting the focus on what you can control...yourself.

Noday said it perfectly. You have absolutely no control over your Alcoholic Boy Friend. You cannot help him. Only he can help himself. My ABF pretended to stop drinking, and went to AA meetings just for show for quite awhile before I admitted to myself that he was doing those things just so I would stay. It's worthless if they do it for anyone other than themselves.

You are smart to state your boundaries, and to get help for yourself. Try not to take what your ABF says too seriously. Often, they will say or do anything to protect their addictions.
Putting the focus on you and criticizing you in any way are just ways to take the focus off themselves.

Take care of yourself, and once again, welcome
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Old 09-29-2010, 02:09 PM
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There isn't anything you can do to get him into recovery or stick with a recovery plan. Don't feel guilty. Maybe step back and just be a supportive friend until he can demonstrate a commitment to staying sober.

Ask yourself what it is you want from the relationship and if he cannot provide it for you, there is your answer. Waiting around to see if he would be able to is unfair for you since there are never any guarantees with alcoholics.

Good luck
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Old 09-29-2010, 03:52 PM
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i am fairly new at all of this stuff, but in this situation i would not think that you gave up too soon. there is no guarantee he will seek sobriety. 5 months is a nice start to a relationship, but you are starting to see the other part of the real person. i was told this before and ignored it- get out before it is too late. i think it is fair of you to tell him to contact you after a certain amount of time being clean.

but I worry about him. I feel if I could help him and have a positive influence on him, I should try. He doesn't really have any healthy, functioning friends.

i struggle wit hthis very thought, but after such a short time you do not really owe him your life. i thought i could have the same effect on my friend of 5 years, but there has been no change in 4 months.

good luck, i hope you don't get dragged down.
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Old 09-29-2010, 08:48 PM
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Hi nodaybut2day! I've never been to Al-Anon before. Thanks for that book recommendation! I love to read. I reallllly like your twist of my short-term relationship history.
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Old 09-29-2010, 08:59 PM
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Quote from Dallying:
((but I worry about him. I feel if I could help him and have a positive influence on him, I should try. He doesn't really have any healthy, functioning friends. ))
I wonder if this should be the universal Motto for Codies, as it seems to represent a lot of our reasons for sticking with addicted loved ones.

Lesson number 1. You will become the scapegoat for all that s**T that happens in the A's life, and will be accused of abandonment in the moment of their need, etc.
This is called quacking, because while it makes a lot of noise to us, it does NOT make any sense.........unless you are a special A translator like Naive.
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Old 09-30-2010, 04:57 AM
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Originally Posted by Jadmack25 View Post
Quote from Dallying:
((but I worry about him. I feel if I could help him and have a positive influence on him, I should try. He doesn't really have any healthy, functioning friends. ))
I wonder if this should be the universal Motto for Codies, as it seems to represent a lot of our reasons for sticking with addicted loved ones.

Lesson number 1. You will become the scapegoat for all that s**T that happens in the A's life, and will be accused of abandonment in the moment of their need, etc.
This is called quacking, because while it makes a lot of noise to us, it does NOT make any sense.........unless you are a special A translator like Naive.

Quoted because it's so very true.
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Old 09-30-2010, 07:10 AM
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hi again Dallying...I strongly recommend finding an Al-Anon meeting in your area. It's really scary to go at first, but before you know it, you find yourself surrounded with people who are or have been exactly where you are right now. There's a lot of comfort and wisdom to be found there.

At first, I could get out of the house to go to meeting because my XAH wouldn't babysit, and it was hard to go to meetings with a baby in tow...so I went to a few online meetings. They were also very helpful.
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Old 09-30-2010, 08:25 AM
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Welcome!

Be THANKFUL that this is your boyfriend and not your husband.

"He left me voicemails and texts last night saying the reason why I end my relationships so early (i never gotten past 6 months) is bc I don't give anyone a chance."

It sounds like you made the same mistake I made. I told my husband everything about me. It WOULD be used against me at a later date.

If you expect him to get help and maintain sobriety because it makes sense and it would keep you in his life you will be disappointed as most of us have. He will get help only when he is ready and most likely that will be a long time from now.

You are wise to seek help and advice. You have come to a good place. It saved my life. I highly recommend Alanon also.
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Old 09-30-2010, 10:09 AM
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So called high function alcoholics deteriorate over time. They like to point out their functional level to downplay or dismiss alcoholism. They even deceive themselves.
Just when I thought I had heard every rationalization in the book, someone on this forum shares a new one LOL.

I know living with/loving an alcoholic is a nightmare, I don't mean to laugh or trivialize it, just to say WE, US, our lives, our happiness, and OUR SANITY are important. Don't sacrifice yourself for a person that is not in control. No matter how good the person may be, might have been, with alcohol at the steering wheel, you are not really with that person, but with a demon.
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Old 09-30-2010, 01:26 PM
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as if the drinking were not enough..that dark side and violent bent are two huge red flags.

would you encourage your best friend to try to make it work with someone like this?
ah,,,didn't think so.
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Old 09-30-2010, 01:58 PM
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Alcoholic ex-bf asks to sit down and talk soon

Originally Posted by RollTide View Post


It sounds like you made the same mistake I made. I told my husband everything about me. It WOULD be used against me at a later date.


You're right Rolltide! Jack has used my background, where I come from (Nebraska), my interests (reading and writing primarily), my age (20s), and my lack of experience to justify I'm wrong or not credible to make a call like that. He'll say "You know. That's the problem with 21 year olds."

I'm not banking he's going to change for me. My life will still move forward. I'm graduating this year! I have a great job lined up for me. My family loves me. I have healthy and happy friends. I don't have any addiction problems whatsoever.

WHAT HAPPENED LAST NIGHT: I bumped into Jack at a bookstore yesterday (of all the places in Manhattan!) by pure coincidence. He is asking me to sit down and have a discussion. I told him I'll need a week before I can see/speak to him. This morning he left a voicemail telling me I shouldn't think about the situation and just talk to him now AND that he's different from the guy in this article that I gave him during our breakup because he took the initiative to admit himself into the rehab. (It's a great wake-up call for friends and family members: google "Alcoholic Boyfriend" and it is the first link)

TO SHOW YOU HOW FUNCTIONAL HE IS, this is the e-mail he just sent me while writing this post

Ugh. Should I believe him?
-----------------------------------------------------
Hi,



I know you mentioned a one week time frame which certainly is your prerogative, however love doesn’t wait. I don’t mean that facetiously. When I saw you leaning over your journal diligently writing, wearing your beautiful dress with you elbow bent focused and writing in earnest, I stood and stared at you forever. I didn’t want to approach you and alert you to my presence because I knew that the moment would end.



I have identified quite a “character flaw” in my character, i.e. addiction. I have acknowledged it and believe it or not, am addressing it. I wouldn’t have ended up in the “ward” if I didn’t know there was a problem. However, I do believe, contrary to yours, your sister’s(s), and clearly popular opinion that I can both carry on a beneficial interpersonal relationship and work on my sobriety. See… the dialogue, writings and basis for much of the dogma supporting “rules and guidelines” of “getting sober” that today’s expert’s utilize is clearly in question on many levels. There are no obvious answers. Look at the simple statistics from Alcoholics’ Anonymous. AA does not supply names, but they do supply plenty of demographics and numbers to better understand the disease. AA’s success rate is a variance of 2.6 to 3.5% based on a 5 year timeframe and those statistics diminish as those timeframes are extended. Needless to say, other supplied defining stats are even less hopeful. I will not allow myself to be defeated by myself or any outside influence - for that matter. I will utilize outside education but to a level that I deem effective. So when AA says you shouldn’t be in a relationship for the first year of sobriety, I question their wisdom and efficacy because in the end, who really knows. We have empirical studies, but that is all that psychology, substance abuse education, and the like can be based on. The individuality of human nature is such that most every diagnosis in the DSM-IV of psychiatric disorders includes a NOS moniker, aka “unspecified” referencing the fact that the clinician cannot give an accurate specific determination of the particular individual’s condition or possible outcome. Thus we are talking psychology and psychiatric medicine as an art and clearly not a science. The individual who responded to the concerned girlfriend in the email that you had me read spouted quite a few of the AA clichés and if that works for him, more power to him. Once, again, I will accept portions of such programs, but am intelligent enough to know myself and my underlying deceits to tailor a more specified program that best suits my needs and situation, and will hopefully give me a much higher chance of success. I guess you could go out with a guy who only drinks tea…then you’d know for sure. That was an LOL.



Clearly, I can’t force you to do anything you don’t want to do nor would I want you to. You are an independent and thoughtful woman and I love you for that. If I have lost you, then I will take that as a very strong lesson learned. But believe me and understand this in no uncertain terms, I am much more in control of my life than you or I would have you believe. What I have done is make supremely poor choices on many an occasion. For this I apologize to myself for shortchanging who I could and can be and certainly to you for hurting you in quite a number of ways. You have been nothing more than an innocent victim who has been nothing but generous with her mind and heart. Your kindness and caring will never be forgotten. Your wisdom is noteworthy and I’m telling you now that any time I make a reference to you being 21 yrs old, it is nothing more than a cheap shot and total ********. It is also nothing more than a diversion from any valid point that you are attempting to present and I truly apologize for that.



Once again, I agree with the direction that you believe that I need to take; I simply disagree with you in the way about getting there. I believe I can get there with you by my side better than if you are not. Either way, I will get there. I would love you to be there because my great joy is hearing your laughter, seeing your smile, and feeling your warmth. Should you not be there to provide those things, I will always have them in my mind’s eye as they won’t be forgotten.



PLEASE CONSIDER A FACE TO FACE DIALOGE WITH ME

JACK

Last edited by Dallying402; 09-30-2010 at 02:06 PM. Reason: Update
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Old 09-30-2010, 02:05 PM
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words are just words...and they don't change reality.

we like to say around here:

say what you mean
mean what you say
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Old 09-30-2010, 02:17 PM
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To me, his email says:

"I want you to talk to me NOW because I'm a little King Baby who is used to getting what he wants all the time."

"I'm going to use all kind of cheesy clichés about how "love doesn't wait", which I know is total bullsh*t, and describe you in a super-cheesy tear-jerker movie moment to show you my soft side".

"I'm going to use all kinds of psychological terms and pseudo-academic analysis b.s. to WOW you with my intelligence, which is supposedly superior to what can be found in AA, so that you think I'm smart and that I've got my sh*t together."

"I'm also going to apologize for being an ass and demeaning you in the hopes that you'll be so totally WOWed by my maturity and my superior understanding of my addiction, that you'll RUN to be by my side, and then we can drive away, into the sunset,...until we can find a bar and I can have a drink"

That email is pure, unadulterated caca.

I sincerely hope you can hit delete and get on with life.

Now, where's Naive to give us a professional translation of this alkie b.s.?
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Old 09-30-2010, 02:32 PM
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He certainly did put some effort into that email and I can't find any plagiarized material. It is apparently he is intelligent, although maybe lacking in the experience of knowing when to start a new paragraph. It's also fine if he wants to look outside of AA to find sobriety, AA is not perfect for everyone by any means (unless you believe it to be divine, thats you're own prerogative).

What I'm not sure of is his motivation, I'm not even sure if he knows what his own motivation is. Why does he want this relationship to work so badly? It's only been 5 months and you both are young, why would he simply not continue looking? One explanation is that he simply does not like to "lose". He doesn't want to "lose" this relationship to you, he doesn't want to "lose" his battle with alcohol (thus why he continues drinking), he doesn't want to "lose" his sense of control over the universe.
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Old 09-30-2010, 03:10 PM
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An alcoholic lawyer

Originally Posted by HidLid View Post
Why does he want this relationship to work so badly? It's only been 5 months and you both are young, why would he simply not continue looking? One explanation is that he simply does not like to "lose". He doesn't want to "lose" this relationship to you, he doesn't want to "lose" his battle with alcohol (thus why he continues drinking), he doesn't want to "lose" his sense of control over the universe.
Thanks Hidlid!

Maybe because he's 36 years old.... Maybe that's why he doesn't want to lose me and start over. Jack wants to get married soon. He dubs me his "dream girl" whom he wants to marry. His age doesn't scare me... I have always dated older men because I have a pretty mature personality at 21 (which is now debatable after this debacle!).

Yes. He's a very intelligent highly functioning alcoholic- he's a lawyer.
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