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Living with an extremely HIGH functioning alcholic.

Old 12-09-2010, 08:03 AM
  # 41 (permalink)  
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Yeah mine tried cutting back sooo many times. Each time I was hopeful he'd stick to it this time and then was bitterly disappointed when he started drinking more again. Sometimes he would lie about it, try and tell me he'd had less or he'd hide it but I always knew because his behaviour would change, eventually he would stop trying to hide it and would be drinking the full amount again, sometimes even more. It went on and on, the pattern always the same. I didn't recognise the pattern at the time because I was too wrapped up in it to take a step back.
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Old 12-11-2010, 10:49 PM
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I SO feel you! Click on my name to read my first few threads!
I learned here that high functioning is a STAGE of alcoholism and not a type.
I learned here that people do what they want to do and they show their priorities with their choices. If my husband is drinking, that is what he wants to do. (that hurts!)
All that is left is for me to choose if I want to be with someone that is addicted to drinking. (can't I have another choice, please?)
I learned I can not change my AH or fix him or get him to see the light or get him to anything.
I learned I was obsessed with his behavior and not spending much time with me and taking care of me.
I learned there were big red flags a long time ago that just didn't occur like red flags because my AH is so so fabulous and I didn't want to see.

For me, when I got pregnant, everything changed. It was as if I had this voice saying, "You can't pull that crap around my child!" Stuff I had worried over and then supressed -all of a sudden was there and had to be dealt with. Depression. Over drinking. Drinking to medicate depression. Drinking in secret. Denial and lying about drinking. Inability to even talk remotely about drinking or other sensitive topics.
Meanwhile, when those things didn't pop up, my AH is so amazing, you wouldn't believe it. Gorgeous and thoughtful and gentle and devoted and loving...
When I addressed my concerns, my AH flipped his lid and spent the better part of a year being defensive and angry and fatalistic and moody and helpless and hopeless and grumpy and difficult.
I felt like he became a stranger.
Of course, I undoubtedly felt that way to him! Before when I had accommodated and worried and tried to manage and then looked the other way, all of a sudden I was setting my own boundary and NOT BACKING DOWN.
All because I kept coming back to the issues i saw and what I needed from him.

No beans.

So, I have moved out.
Still, he is no different.
I think he doesn't know how to even think or look at anything any different.

Ultimately, I realized we had communication issues along with our other issues.
I realized being lied to is not acceptable to me.
Lack of responsibility is not acceptable to me.
Untreated (and denied) depression is not acceptable to me.
Bitter, defensive yuck in response to valid concerns is not acceptable to me.
A bunch of stuff that I was previously unable to admit because to admit it meant I'd have to walk away.
UGH.
Its not fun to look at this stuff.
For me, it means losing so much good.
But it also means I am raising my self worth.
I deserve a non-addict. I deserve open communication.
I deserve an equal partner.

Plus, this whole process is helping me practice opening my heart while I release attachment to how I want him to be, while I accept how he is.

My observation is if you are counting drinks and asking him to cut back, you are not accepting him as he is.
I hear you expressing that you have a problem.
It looks like he is the one with the problem, but he appears quite fine with the amount he drinks.
You, on the other hand, feel uncomfortable.

It is not for me to say what to do, but I would suggest you honor that you have a problem with his behavior and ask yourself what you are going to do to take care of you with that? (hint: it doesn't include changing him or him changing)
I'd strongly suggest you check out Melody Beattie's book Codependent No More. It really helped.

Good luck. Stick around.
peace
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Old 09-04-2013, 11:00 PM
  # 43 (permalink)  
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Wow, it's been since 2010 that this had started. I wonder what ever become of Highfuncrioning .... Did she ever leave? She she marry him and make babies? Is she still here? The stories of the women have given me yet more strength to know I deserve better

He's so smart. He made me feel stupid and dependent on him. If I could go back to that 27 year old and tell her to run and that she's a fantastic, strong and smart woman and that it's not too late to "start again", I would. Now I have two beautiful children, who are still just babes ... I fear for their future. I feel alone and still made to blame. Yet I still hope he will "see the light". I'm here to gain strength to do what I know I need to do, while I still hope but plan for my own future. I don't want to be one of those women whose children have grown up through it, until it finally comes to the point where they had to live with it and I should have left years ago. Years ago is right now ... At least it's really really soon. We talk about it a lot. He knows he had a problem. He says he's not mentally ready. It's hard to change your whole life and all your friends. So he has a chance, for now.
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Old 09-04-2013, 11:42 PM
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Hi functioning

Leave now. Trust me its not with it. You should go live your life before you throw it away on an alcaholic. Drunks suck!
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Old 09-05-2013, 07:06 AM
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Originally Posted by Nottoblame View Post
Wow, it's been since 2010 that this had started. I wonder what ever become of Highfuncrioning .... Did she ever leave? She she marry him and make babies? Is she still here? The stories of the women have given me yet more strength to know I deserve better

He's so smart. He made me feel stupid and dependent on him. If I could go back to that 27 year old and tell her to run and that she's a fantastic, strong and smart woman and that it's not too late to "start again", I would. Now I have two beautiful children, who are still just babes ... I fear for their future. I feel alone and still made to blame. Yet I still hope he will "see the light". I'm here to gain strength to do what I know I need to do, while I still hope but plan for my own future. I don't want to be one of those women whose children have grown up through it, until it finally comes to the point where they had to live with it and I should have left years ago. Years ago is right now ... At least it's really really soon. We talk about it a lot. He knows he had a problem. He says he's not mentally ready. It's hard to change your whole life and all your friends. So he has a chance, for now.
Hi, nottoblame, and welcome to SR. I see that you just joined and this is your first post. May I suggest that you start a new thread of your own? You'll likely get a lot more feedback that way, rather than piggybacking on a thread that's a couple of years old.

Also, I'd like to suggest Alanon as a way to gain understanding and strength about what you're up against and how to cope. Here's a link to help you find a meeting http://www.al-anon.alateen.org/ and here's a link to a thread here at SR started by a woman contemplating her first Alanon meeting http://www.soberrecovery.com/forums/...e-tonight.html

Again, welcome, and please go ahead and start your own thread to tell us your story. It's a great community here, no BS and a lot of support!
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Old 09-05-2013, 06:46 PM
  # 46 (permalink)  
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i HAD to reply to this, I just did.

yes I know. this thread was how I found this site and I felt compelled to add to it. i wondered about her. I've been to a few different Al-anon meetings at different locations and one I really likes but the one closest to me was too "churchy" for my liking. Alcoholism is a HUGE problem where I am living and perhaps a larger problem is the secrecy and shame behind it all. seems that the local al-anon is a bunch of older ladies who have finally found the strength to come out with it. I applaud them but would love to see more people there. there are MANY MANY MANY who could be going. I've got the book. I've been to meetings. a book about Dealing with a high functioning alcoholic came in the mail yesterday. I don't care about getting more people to reply. I felt I needed to reply to this thread so I went with what felt best. thanks for your information and support
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Old 09-06-2013, 04:02 AM
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He doesn't want to quit.

My question is...how long are you willing to put up with that?

If nothing has changed in 3.5 yrs can you handle that potentially for the rest of your life with him? It is about you. ..not him!!
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Old 09-07-2013, 12:41 AM
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Ahhh, high functioning alcoholics. If your intention is to stay with your man and thoroughly educate yourself about what he's dealing with, Al-anon meetings will teach you a great deal about what you can and cannot do.

My perspective is that the love of your life is already married and has a family--it's called alcohol. You are the mistress, and he's telling you that he's not really attached to his wife, it's more a marriage of convenience, they barely see each other, he'll leave her for you any day now. But he already has his first love. If you are willing to play second fiddle to that, it is your life. You could wait years, decades--and he might still die in her arms.

Whether or not he's able to go to work does not change what alcoholism is and isn't. It is common enough for alcoholics to reach old age. Their children and families inherit a toxic emotional legacy, though, even if they are 'nice enough' people with good jobs. I wish you the best, and applaud you for seeking information. Al-anon is a great resource.
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Old 09-07-2013, 12:43 AM
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hah, didn't realize this is an old thread!
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Old 09-09-2013, 07:25 AM
  # 50 (permalink)  
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the mistress perspective

thanks for your perspective. The "mistress" way of looking at it makes sense to me. my husband and I discuss this a lot ... is it the alcohol or is it all the other things ... like being mean to me and selfish and basically a huge jerk. if he sobers up will be he able to grow and gain perspective of a wiser man or will he really just be a jerk. I blame the alcohol cause it matches all the things I've read about alcohol. I cling to the hope that is he sobers up then he will not be such a jerk and will not place such unrealistic expectations on me and will be the loving husband who respects me, that I deserve. i actually told him all of this last night. he tried really hard to be loving and more helpful this weekend. its funny cause its like he tries too hard, perhaps cause its hard to change? I don't know. anyway, we're still working through it and I will and do talk to him about all of this. I don't know what it will come to but reading this thread and hearing different perspectives and reading other materials on my own give me a broader vocabulary to express myself. its so hard to make the decision to get up and go. it is not a decision I can make lightly. as far as this being an old thread .... the information and opinions expressed are still relevant and other people may find that also so I say this is the right to be.
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Old 09-09-2013, 08:19 AM
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This same thing was discussed on another thread just recently, regarding other problems besides just the drinking. If your AH is working some kind of program that stresses honesty, responsibility, personal growth, etc., as being part of achieving and maintaining sobriety, then yes, he has a good chance of fixing those character defects in sobriety also.

If all he is doing is removing alcohol from the equation, then it is much less likely that there will be other changes, and you may find yourself living w/a "dry drunk."

How about you? What are you doing to heal yourself? Again, if you are waiting for things to become better w/o making any changes in yourself (and believe me, it would be SO unusual if you were not messed up in any way yourself as a result of living with alcoholism), you're likely to be disappointed here too.

I wish I had gone to Alanon when I first thought he had returned to drinking instead of waiting and relying on HIM to fix everything. I surely would have been in a better place to handle what ended up coming out 4 years later....

ETA: I'm not saying that you HAVE to start a new thread, simply that a new thread is likely to attract more replies than one that is years old and many pages long. If you're happy w/the number of replies you're getting, then by all means, keep doing as you are. If you'd like more feedback, you know how to get that too. Your choice.
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Old 09-09-2013, 08:30 AM
  # 52 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by fairlyuncertain View Post
My perspective is that the love of your life is already married and has a family--it's called alcohol. You are the mistress, and he's telling you that he's not really attached to his wife, it's more a marriage of convenience, they barely see each other, he'll leave her for you any day now. But he already has his first love. If you are willing to play second fiddle to that, it is your life. You could wait years, decades--and he might still die in her arms.
Yep, very true. This is EXACTLY how I feel. I even feel that I became his enemy, it's just the way he acts around me (which might be good because that means I am not enabling him anymore, and deep inside, he might be aware of that).
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Old 09-09-2013, 05:29 PM
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Hi Not,

I don't know if you ended up posting another thread, just in case I will contribute to both.
I married my AH when I was 27, have 2 beautiful children, who are now in their late teens. On occasion they will ask me wth I was thinking if he was the same then as now.

"I thought it would change, I thought he'd grow up, I thought he's simmer down....." the list goes on. Contrary, I am a "religious" person, and so is he. Alcohol is not at all choosey or prejudice, that is for sure.

In addition, my AH who can be very loving, he is a complete softy when it comes to me, and his children on the flip side is an aho** .. it is here that I learned somehow, maybe from just reading that he is not an aho** because he drinks, he is an ah** who drinks.

It gets harder, it really does that is the only thing I can promise you. It is my faith that has kept me strong. My teens are beautiful , loving people who mentor others who have the challenges of addictive substances. They have all the patience for others but they can barely tolerate their father when he has been or is drinking.

It's the saddest thing in my life to know this. I also feel, deep down, that when they leave here- they will be leaving here. For good.

Bless you,
Be well,

And read here and soak it up-- these people are amazing.
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