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Help - Wife/Mother of four with extreme alcoholism.

Old 12-21-2010, 05:37 AM
  # 41 (permalink)  
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keep your head up man.

you're doing the right thing by your kids!
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Old 12-21-2010, 05:52 AM
  # 42 (permalink)  
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Today she wants to go back to the recovery home and is saying she will do anything to make this happen.
sure she does. hey, it's much nicer there than in a lock-down detox center. plus, once she gets there, she can drink again or flee again.

you are not a loser. you just underestimated alcoholism, as we all have done.
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Old 12-21-2010, 06:24 AM
  # 43 (permalink)  
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In a way I feel cheated here, I thought I was going to have a partner to raise a family with. If she would have done this after our first child it would be an easier decision. It seems like there are no "good" option a for me.
I feel a lot of guilt about being an alcoholic: I feel so bad that I let my family down. But I am still married to the man that I was a heavy drinker with for 15 years and then he endured 5 years of chronic drinking that went way, way way beyond "heavy".

There is a good option for both of you: recovery. It sounds like she is going into rehab as a quick cure and not understanding that recovery is a life-time job. Does she understand that you just don't get better and become "normal" again? She has this disease for the rest of her life and has to treat it, for the rest of her life, everyday, preferably with a program of recovery. I'm sorry to say it, but it is not going to go away.
But, people have things like diabetes, and it does not go away, but it is treatable. There is hope.

I hate to think about her being raped, killed, drinking herself to death, or having some major accident. It is not hard to imagine how difficult it would be to let the kids know what happened to their mother. Just yesterday she could have had a bunch of horrible things happen to her.

All of this makes me feel like I am the biggest loser on the planet. I chose to marry this woman and have children, I even knew after the third child she was headed down the wrong path towards extreme alcohol addiction.
You are not a loser: if your wife took recovery seriously and really gave it an effort, things could change and you could have a good marriage.
But, in the meantime: you really need to take care of you. And your kids...
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Old 12-21-2010, 08:47 AM
  # 44 (permalink)  
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Today she wants to go back to the recovery home and is saying she will do anything to make this happen.
Then let her do whatever she needs to do to make that happen. Step away from her recovery efforts. The only way recovery will work is if she drives that bus herself.

Here she is a mother of four with a family of people who love her and she decides to go hitch hiking to try and isolate herself so she can drink.
She has the voice of addiction in her head. She'll follow that voice anywhere. She'll leave anyone behind. She's the only one that can hear it and she is the only one that can over come it. Nothing you do will help her with that. Nothing.

I wish I could just walk away from her but I am too worried she is going to harm/kill herself if left to her destructive alcoholic ways.
You know what - she might. She's killing herself right now despite all your efforts. She's not only killing herself she is robbing you and your children of anything resembling normal.

She is sentencing her children to a life of dysfunctional patterns of thinking and coping...and that is the thing you have control over.

In a way I feel cheated here, I thought I was going to have a partner to raise a family with. If she would have done this after our first child it would be an easier decision. It seems like there are no "good" option a for me.
You have been cheated. Addiction is a thief. I agree. I said the exact words 'It seems like there are no good options for me' to my counselor. She said "You're right" I couldn't have my ideal so I was making no choices at all. She helped me see that I had to accept that none of the available choices was the one I wanted but nothing would be better until I started picking from the available options.

It is not hard to imagine how difficult it would be to let the kids know what happened to their mother.
The things that might happen to their mother are not under you control. You can share their pain and help them with their sadness.

Alcoholic families have three rules. Don't talk, don't trust, don't feel. What about 10-20 years from now, with a life of complete chaos, total dysfunction regarding basic human relationships (talking, trusting, feeling), drunkeness, all the craziness and lack of security? The things they are exposed to - those things you can control. How will that conversation go?

We as parents are drawing a map for our children as adults. If we draw a map of alcoholism and co-dependence, that is where they are going to go. I finally saw this with my xah and his family - and even with my parents and their parents, and with me and my brother. It was a moment of realization to see how the maps made in childhood were so hard to re-write.

All of this makes me feel like I am the biggest loser on the planet. I chose to marry this woman and have children, I even knew after the third child she was headed down the wrong path towards extreme alcohol addiction.
You are not a loser. You are married to an alcoholic. You are doing the best you can and you are trying every day to figure out what that is. It is a horribly painful and heartbreaking time and you are so strong just getting through the days. You are at a war with alcoholism but you are fighting in the wrong battle. You are fighting to beat alcohol - and you will lose. Only your wife can win that battle. Fight for yourself, and you will win. That doesn't have to mean you cut her from your life forever - it just means you fight a different battle.
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Old 12-21-2010, 01:50 PM
  # 45 (permalink)  
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Thumper you rock!
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Old 12-21-2010, 02:02 PM
  # 46 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by Jazzman View Post
Thumper you rock!
X 2.

Thanks and God bless us all,
Coyote
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Old 12-22-2010, 09:17 PM
  # 47 (permalink)  
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Unhappy

Tomorrow I am taking her to another recovery home which is actually the most expensive one yet. At this home they really limit how much free time they have and money. It would be great if she woke up and got it this time, but I am not going to hold my breath for it.

This time I am going to tell her straight up that another relapse and wild goose Chase I am done. She does not have physical custody and I will ask for six months of sobriety for her to prove to a court in order to see the children.

I also will change from legal separation to divorce and will move on with my life. The volatility of all of this has been killing me slowly. If she cannot see what she has to lose I cannot care more than her.
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Old 12-23-2010, 05:05 AM
  # 48 (permalink)  
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I found that setting AND sticking to a boundary I could live with, made it possible for me to live again. Good luck Lost, come back anytime you need support!
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Old 12-23-2010, 07:02 AM
  # 49 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by Thumper View Post
Then let her do whatever she needs to do to make that happen. Step away from her recovery efforts. The only way recovery will work is if she drives that bus herself.



She has the voice of addiction in her head. She'll follow that voice anywhere. She'll leave anyone behind. She's the only one that can hear it and she is the only one that can over come it. Nothing you do will help her with that. Nothing.



You know what - she might. She's killing herself right now despite all your efforts. She's not only killing herself she is robbing you and your children of anything resembling normal.

She is sentencing her children to a life of dysfunctional patterns of thinking and coping...and that is the thing you have control over.



You have been cheated. Addiction is a thief. I agree. I said the exact words 'It seems like there are no good options for me' to my counselor. She said "You're right" I couldn't have my ideal so I was making no choices at all. She helped me see that I had to accept that none of the available choices was the one I wanted but nothing would be better until I started picking from the available options.



The things that might happen to their mother are not under you control. You can share their pain and help them with their sadness.

Alcoholic families have three rules. Don't talk, don't trust, don't feel. What about 10-20 years from now, with a life of complete chaos, total dysfunction regarding basic human relationships (talking, trusting, feeling), drunkeness, all the craziness and lack of security? The things they are exposed to - those things you can control. How will that conversation go?

We as parents are drawing a map for our children as adults. If we draw a map of alcoholism and co-dependence, that is where they are going to go. I finally saw this with my xah and his family - and even with my parents and their parents, and with me and my brother. It was a moment of realization to see how the maps made in childhood were so hard to re-write.



You are not a loser. You are married to an alcoholic. You are doing the best you can and you are trying every day to figure out what that is. It is a horribly painful and heartbreaking time and you are so strong just getting through the days. You are at a war with alcoholism but you are fighting in the wrong battle. You are fighting to beat alcohol - and you will lose. Only your wife can win that battle. Fight for yourself, and you will win. That doesn't have to mean you cut her from your life forever - it just means you fight a different battle.
ALLLLL of this.

The best thing that I ever did for my AH was move out. The best thing his family ever did for him was to stop bailing him out (e.g., giving him money, allowing him to work for the family business).

He is finding his own way by whatever means and the beautiful thing is that I don't have to worry about it or try to mastermind it (do you have a sponsor? are you going to meetings? etc., etc.).

I am happy in my home with my little girl and the tension (that even she could feel at the young age of 2) is gone.

It is hard but the very best thing that you can do for your kids and yourself.

I spent 3 years watching the problem develop and trying to help--one year living through the throes of full-on alcoholism and isolating myself so no one knew about the dirty little secret--one year with tenuous sobriety--and another year with consistent falling-off the wagon. I can assure you that living as a single parent is a freaking field day in comparison to that--and given the seriousness of your AW's problem--will create a feeling of peace for you and your kids.

Best of luck.
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Old 12-23-2010, 10:33 PM
  # 50 (permalink)  
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She is now at this more expensive recovery home, most of the other women there are younger but she seems to do well with younger women. I tried to tell her I was not going to catch her the next time she falls but I am not sure I am very convincing.

The hard part is when she says she knows she has done so much damage to the family and thinks we might be better off without her. Because I still love her I want her to want our family back.
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Old 12-23-2010, 10:52 PM
  # 51 (permalink)  
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lostfamily,

i typed a long answer, but lost it.
i will keep it simple.
what she says means nothing. absolutely nothing. actions are what matter.
go to alanon and learn to detach with love and take care of those children, right now,
cause right now, they need all of you to get through this.
please educate yourself and tell the children the truth (age appropriate).

I am in recovery from alcohol, 14+years, and had to divorce my ex when he continued his use and escalated to crack.

Please, take care of the children now, anything you say or do for your wife is either not going to be heard or dismissed altogether. The children are watching and learning from you.

Beth
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Old 12-23-2010, 11:16 PM
  # 52 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by lostfamily View Post
She is now at this more expensive recovery home, most of the other women there are younger but she seems to do well with younger women. I tried to tell her I was not going to catch her the next time she falls but I am not sure I am very convincing.

The hard part is when she says she knows she has done so much damage to the family and thinks we might be better off without her. Because I still love her I want her to want our family back.
She will be convinced when you follow through.

I totally get the last part of your post. Wanting him to fight for us. Wanting him to want us more then he wanted to drink.

What he wanted was both things. I could no longer live like that. Oh the things he said. He laid it on soooo thick. He ramped it up with the love, manipulation, guilt, then threats, then mean and ugly. It took every shred of courage and conviction I had to hold my boundary.

More then anyone else this holiday season, I am wishing for you and your family to find some nuggets of peace and joy to carry you through. You are doing the next right thing. The love you have for your family shines through your posts. Focus on your children. They need you so much. Please know that things will get better.
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Old 12-23-2010, 11:19 PM
  # 53 (permalink)  
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More then anyone else this holiday season, I am wishing for you and your family to find some nuggets of peace and joy to carry you through. You are doing the next right thing. The love you have for your family shines through your posts
Yes, lostfamily, I wanted to say this too.


Beth

Last edited by wicked; 12-23-2010 at 11:20 PM. Reason: fix quote
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Old 12-24-2010, 06:39 PM
  # 54 (permalink)  
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Red face

Thanks for everyone that has posted in this thus far, I sincerely appreciate all of them. This is going to be our first Christmas with out her and I am trying my best to stay positive for the kids. The woman who is her case manager said she probably is not going to call as this is going to be too difficult on her.

I asked that they really keep their eyes on her as this experience is going to be very difficult on her.

Thanks again for everyone's posts !!!
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Old 12-31-2010, 10:53 PM
  # 55 (permalink)  
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Red face

She went in to the new recovery home home on 12-23 and so far she is doing well. She told me her therapist said no phone conversations or interactions with me or the kids. Maybe this is a good thing, the longer I go without chatting with her the easier it is to ponder life without her.
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Old 12-31-2010, 11:23 PM
  # 56 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by lostfamily View Post
She went in to the new recovery home home on 12-23 and so far she is doing well. She told me her therapist said no phone conversations or interactions with me or the kids. Maybe this is a good thing, the longer I go without chatting with her the easier it is to ponder life without her.
Same for me, my axw went to a 28 day inpatient rehab, and drank 10 days out. Maybe sooner, IDK.

I was NOT at all confident in my ability to raise my 5yo daughter by myself, I just felt like it wasn't possible. Looking back on it, I believe my HP was allowing me a "test drive", showing me I was plenty capable. We did just fine that month without her. In fact, the calm and peace and lack of chaos was like a "slap-in-the-face" wake-up call for me.

Maybe this is a gift from your HP? Maybe this time next year, you and your kids will be in a much better place? You never know.

Are you and your kids getting any support from counselors? I hope so, it really helped LMC and me.

Thanks and God bless us all,
Coyote
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Old 01-01-2011, 02:12 AM
  # 57 (permalink)  
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Dear Lostfamily

Just wanted to add that I have you in my thoughts and prayers. This addiction to a chemical substance is such a thief.

My STBXAH has relapsed now for seven years after a period of sobriety of seven years. Now he is in rehab nr 16 -yearlong court ordered by his family. I still am scared of raising my children alone- but I have done it now alone for seven years a day at a time!

Had I left seven years ago the children would have been better off. I did them no favour especially by allowing myself to become so sick with worry over him when his only interest was his alcohol consumption!

Concentrate on YOU. You are the important one here. I am saying it again as you can never hear it enough!!!! What is good for you is good for your children and for your wife - if she WANTS sobriety.

Hugs
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Old 01-08-2011, 03:41 PM
  # 58 (permalink)  
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Well it will be three weeks tomorrow that she has been sober, I feel good knowing she is not drinking. I still feel very sad about what my life has now become without her. Everything reminds me of her and I miss having her close to me and being able to visit her.

Her counselor has said she should not have any interactions with me and the kids which I guess is a good thing for her. It just makes me sad that I don't have her in my life right now. I'm not sure if things will ever get back to normal or what even normal is.
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Old 01-08-2011, 04:33 PM
  # 59 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by lostfamily View Post
Her counselor has said she should not have any interactions with me and the kids which I guess is a good thing for her. It just makes me sad that I don't have her in my life right now. I'm not sure if things will ever get back to normal or what even normal is.
This is a gift. She must be in a good program - I really wish G's program had said this, rather than allowing him to try and run my life from inside rehab. (On the plus side, though, it helped me practice putting up good boundaries).
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Old 01-17-2011, 09:57 PM
  # 60 (permalink)  
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Question

She has 30 days sober today, I am worried though as one of her doctors prescribed her Librium to deal with her anxiety. She now thinks she might be allergic to this drug.
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