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Working through it all and feeling better

Old 11-19-2010, 05:03 PM
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Working through it all and feeling better

So this has been day 19 of AH's moving out. My son seems happier when he is with me, and I do too, at times. Being alone is difficult. How do I get my son to see his father has a problem with drinking? I have talked to him a little about it, but I know he doesn't want to think of his father like that, he loves him. When I spoke to my son about seeing a counselor, he ademately said he didn't want to go talk to a stranger, but I am going to make the appointment anyway and make him go. In Michael Gurian's book about raising boys he writes that boys have a much harder time with divorce because they don't let out their emotions as females do.

It is interesting to me that I don't miss my AH. I do miss some things but our relationship eroded away over the past years and it is just a relief actually. I am even looking forward to Thanksgiving, not regretting it without my family in tact. I am beginning to not be disappointed and angry when my AH does not do what he needs to do as a parent as I know he is not able to. I feel like I am being a better parent, even though my son gets angry when I discipline him and make him do his homework and study and not play XBOX.

I have even lightened up and am more like my old self as a teacher. I am getting more done at home and I haven't taken a nap after school in the past few weeks. Was I napping because I was so stressed and worried? Probably. I know I am not near the end of my difficulties, but at least I feel better.

I found my AH has a facebook page this week and the way he talked on his wall was weird, like he has changed so much. He said he would never get on facebook!

Is it normal to have thoughts sometimes of your AH hitting rock bottom? I don't like thinking like that, I just need to detach and it won't matter if he does or not I guess, right? I couldn't have gotten this far without all of you, that is for sure.... Happy Friday
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Old 11-19-2010, 05:53 PM
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Thanks for the update JackTheDog. So glad to hear you sound like you are doing well.

There was a time in my life where I was napping after work like that. It went on for about a year I think. That was the year I was clinically depressed but left untreated because I did not know I was clinically depressed. When the home situation with alcoholic fiance blew up and my life and mind fell apart as a result, I finally got diagnosed. You may want to try a free on-line depression screening and give it a whirl. It also can't hurt to start taking omega-3 fish oil and vitamin d if you're not already. It's generally accepted that most Americans are deficient in both.
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Old 11-19-2010, 06:00 PM
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I do take omega-3s and vit. d, and have been for a long time, thanks. I have been diagnosed with depression in the past and am taking an anti-depressant, in low dose.
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Old 11-19-2010, 06:54 PM
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jackthedog,

it might be time to check with the doctor on the dosage, especially with less light this time of year. sometimes, it makes me tired and lethargic although i am not as depressed, i dont have the energy i usually have.

It is wonderful to hear how you how you are looking forward to the holidays with relief.
I know my first holiday sans ex and alcohol was lovely. So peaceful and kind of dreamy.
I was still poor, but put lights into every socket i could find, especially twinkly ones, I love the sparkles.

Anyway, I am glad to hear from you and things will get better if we let them.

Beth
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Old 11-19-2010, 09:42 PM
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Dear Jackthedog, you wrote "So this has been day 19 of AH's moving out. My son seems happier when he is with me, and I do too, at times. Being alone is difficult. How do I get my son to see his father has a problem with drinking? I have talked to him a little about it, but I know he doesn't want to think of his father like that, he loves him. When I spoke to my son about seeing a counselor, he ademately said he didn't want to go talk to a stranger, but I am going to make the appointment anyway and make him go. In Michael Gurian's book about raising boys he writes that boys have a much harder time with divorce because they don't let out their emotions as females do."

I noticed you didn't mention the age of your son, but I'm going to take a guess he's in his early teen years. I'm not sure you REALLY want to convince your son his father is an alcoholic. I have raised two sons into adulthood. One is 35 and one is 19 years old. I have tried to hold onto the belief that there should be a bonding between a son and his father. And I wish I could still hold unto that belief!

Their father and my husband is a dry drunk and has become totally detached from us. Somewhere along the years my 19 year old has become very hostile to his father. There is so much tension between the two of them you could cut it with a knife. I've been worried that I have taught my 35 year old son to become the mediator between myself and his father.

I have done everything I could to try to keep the relationship between my sons and their father alive! I used to be the one that had to make plans for outings for the three of them so they could spend some time together.

Well, I've decided that I need to start making plans to move out and start our lifes without my dry drunk husband. By my speaking out to my sons, especially my 19 year old, there is a lot less stress between the three of us. Previously without me speaking out, my 19 year old would take his hostility out on me. I was the "safe" one he could explode on.

**************************************** *****************

It doesn't matter who my father was; it matters who I remember he was."
Anne Sexton
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Old 11-20-2010, 02:55 AM
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Jack, sounds like you are adjusting well and things are calming down for you! that's great! I can relate. It is two weeks tomorrow that i left my home and my AH and I am feeling so much more relaxed and positive and getting myself adjusted. Go easy on yourself and give yourself time to heal and relax. it is great you feel your old self returning. I can relate and I've missed me for way too long. Enjoy your journey!
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Old 11-20-2010, 04:23 AM
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Yes, my son is 13. I want him to understand the disease and recognize what his father does that is part of the disease. Like last night for example, my son was at a friend's since after school when I dropped him off. This past week, Thursday and Friday were his Father's days for visitation, but since I teach at the same school our son attends, I take him home after school until his father picks him up, that way I know where our son is and what he is doing. So he stayed at the friends house and I text him to see where he was around 7and he said still at his friend's and that he didn't know when he was going to his dad's. I text him back and said if he thinks his dad has been drinking when he talks to him and he comes to pick him up call me and I will come get himor ask your friend if you can spend the night. AT 9:30 I text him to see if he was still at his friend's house and he was at a girl's house and his dad knew he said. I asked him when his dad was picking him up and he said he was spending the night at his friend's house. I don't know for sure if his dad was drinking, but I pick my son up from his dad's at 10 am today.

It's funny, I didn't get angry at his father for not parenting like he should (I wouldn't have let our son go to a girl's house), because I don't think he is capable of being a good parent in that area, he cannot stand up to our son. He never did, he was so involved in "him" he could never deal with the anger a teenager shows when they get mad at you for not getting their way. And our son is an only child, so there are a whole host of other issues that can go along with that situation. I guess that is detachment a little? (Not expecting my AH to meet my expectations?)

I was questioning the fact that I even intervened by texting my son about his whereabouts, but I don't trust that my AH was and my gut said to sent the text about spending the night at his friends he thinks his father has been drinking and shouldn't be picking him up. The first time I text that I erased it, then did it anyways.
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Old 11-20-2010, 04:38 AM
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I'm sure it can be difficult to parent a teen with an alcoholic parent in part because the alcoholic parent is going to be more inattentive and therefore lenient. As an ACOA I know what this kind of parenting got me: No boundaries. Not to mention no discipline or routine in my life. Anyway, you'll probably want to be more strict but will need to find a healthy balance. Maybe there is a book on coparenting with an alcoholic?
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Old 11-20-2010, 07:12 AM
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Hello,

In my home when my mom and AF separated then divorced my mom had rules. My mom was there when my dad picked us up. She would not allow us to go with my father if she knew he had been drinking. We were younger than your son, I was 11 when they divorced and I am the oldest of four. My mom would even offer him coffee and to sit for a while to sober up even to spend time with us at our house and she would go out so that is was time with just him. Her biggest concern was him drinking and driving with us. I have so much respect for my mom for how she would try to handle it. It did get ugly at times with arguing and name calling but we were safe. I really wish my mom would have had us go to something like Alateen but it was not as available back then. She also stopped going to Alanon after she split from my dad thinking that everything was ok now because he was gone. I am just saying that when it comes to children I really do not think it is easy to navigate through this. Do you have any Alateen meetings in your area. I have been taking my 17 year old daughter every Monday while I am at Alanon. She was a bit reluctant at first but this will be her 3rd week going. She has now started talking to my RAH again and does not have as much anger and confusion. I think teenagers relate so much better with other teens than with a adult counselor at times.
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Old 11-20-2010, 08:34 AM
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Making sure that your child is safe and not in the car of an intoxicated person is NEVER overstepping your bounds. It's not even codependency. It's caring for the well being and safety of your child.
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Old 11-20-2010, 10:58 AM
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Jackthedog, I guess my previous post was based upon what I wish a father-son relationship could be, not based upon the realities of an alcoholic father-son relationship. Even though I tried to avoid the realism of the disease of alcoholism, my sons lived with it, and experienced it. I had tried to "protect" my sons until I thought they were old enough to know the truth. However, our teenagers "Get It"! It sounds like your son, also, "Gets It"!

Another good reason to talk about the disease is to educate them about the inheritance of addiction. Teenagers will be teenagers, and will experiment, but for the teenagers of addicts they need to know their chances of becoming addicted are much greater.

I firmly believe in mothers' intuition, and it can empower mothers with almost phenomenal abilities. There is an unspoken connection between a mother and child that bypasses logic and reason. Trust that intuition and act on it, if necessary.

You wrote "When I spoke to my son about seeing a counselor, he ademately said he didn't want to go talk to a stranger, but I am going to make the appointment anyway and make him go." I firmly believe you are going to be wasting your money by going this route. It's difficult enough for a teenager to open up about their feelings with someone they love, let enough "talk to a stranger". I, also, tried this route with my 19 year old, but without any results. I must have done something right, because my 19 year old turned to a church youth group for his support.

You, also, wrote, "And our son is an only child, so there are a whole host of other issues that can go along with that situation." My 19 year old son is not really my son but my grandson. We have raised him from birth, and he is in every meaning a son to me. His mother, single parent, and my daughter completed suicide on May 16, 1995.

I confirm lc1972 suggestion that your son start attending Alateen meetings in your area. The teenagers share experience, strength and hope with each other, discuss their difficulties, learn effective ways to cope with their problems, encourage one another, and help each other. Together they learn compulsive drinking is a disease, they can detach themselves emotionally from the drinker's problems while continuing to love the person, they are not the cause of anyone else's drinking or behavior, they cannot change or control anyone but themselves, they have spiritual and intellectual resources with which to develop their own potentials, no matter what happens at home, and they can build satisfying and rewarding life experiences for themselves. Every Alateen group has an active, adult member of Al-Anon to serve as a sponsor. The sponsor is an active party of the group, guiding and sharing knowledge of the Twelve Steps and Traditions.

I'm thinking about recommending to my own 19 year old to start attending his own Alateen group.

********************************************* ******************

Don’t worry about tomorrow because God has already been there and He has set the stage.
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