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Old 12-23-2010, 02:35 AM
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Where to Start?

This was never supposed to happen.

Two years ago (we've known each other / been dating for about five years now) G gave himself some interesting side-effects to coughing a trillion times in the morning (he has a lung condition and decided on his own that was the best way to stay healthy). He scared himself to death, and started drinking alcohol to cope with his made-up illness because he was certain he had cancer. He had always had alcohol before, but he'd limit it to a shot at the local bar on the way to work, and never buying any to bring home, as his father was an alcoholic and he was afraid to continue the trend.
The fear of cancer, real or imaginary, overcame that fear until soon he was buying pint bottles of cheap whiskey to bring home for the week and needing a new one the next day. It's been a constant bout with the alcohol ever since, where he'll work his way off, then something will upset him and he'll start up again. At this point I have to walk on eggshells to make sure I don't make a mistake when trying to tell him anything. Sometimes he's fine, but I never know when he'll snap.

When he drinks he frequently turns into a "rager," yelling about how he's only got a couple days left before he dies and I'm watching him die because I don't <insert trumped up charge here>.
When he's sober he says how much he appreciates me sticking by him, and thanks for not getting mad because of his mood swings, his lung disease makes him depressed and the medication he's currently taking for it gives him mood swings and thanks for understanding, etc, etc.

It's to the point where I'm afraid to shower because he panics when I'm not near him, and he reads the paper while asking me to pick up this and put that away and go get him this and why haven't I done everything he asked? (all while he's reading the paper). I swear, if someone came along with unlimited resources and more money than God and offered me three wishes, I'd want a nice long hot shower (hot water steams up the bathroom too much), a good thick newspaper all to myself (he reads it first and throws it out when he's done), and the time to read it.

I'm actually grateful when he's passed out drunk, post-raging (which usually is after I walk out on him several times, or apologize fifty million times, and he collapses on the floor because I "don't resolve things" (heh). It lets me catch up on all the little chores around the house that he won't let me do when he's sober.

I've been to three local Al-Anon meetings, months and months ago. I like the Thursday group the best, and have been dreaming about going back, but he learned I was going and decided that I didn't need to go anymore - he wasn't ever going to drink again so it wasn't important. I haven't been able to sneak out since because he wouldn't even let me drive my own car until yesterday (I drove to visit my family - something that always stresses us BOTH out, but something I do once a year for Christmas).

He's never been violent, and never laid a hand on me aside from grabbing my arm tightly when he's afraid of being "abandoned". Last night was different, though... Usually when things progress badly he'll start pulling all his clothes out of the closet and throwing them on the floor, pulling pictures of him off the walls, etc. When that was over he alternated between yelling at me even louder and knocking over first the furniture, then the unbreakable knickknacks, then moving into the breakables. I couldn't take it anymore, I announced I was leaving for work, grabbed my keys, and left - my cell phone still on the charger. I've been in work ever since 11, it's now 4am, my dinner consisted of a bottle of Code Red Mountain Dew and a Kit Kat I found in my cube mate's desk drawer. (He's gone for the Christmas holidays, and the vending machine was broken, so I'll buy him a fresh one when he gets back.)

I've severed ties with G before, for about a week, with $3.27 in my bank account and a pre-paid debit card with $5 left (gift from the same cube mate), and never felt so free in my life, but of course when he came back upset and repentant I left him back. Sometimes when he's talking about how he'll soon be dead and then I'll be sorry, I wish he'd just speed up the process - and then feel immediately guilty for even thinking that.

He was a good man, before the alcohol took control of his life, and I've told him time and time again that we're growing apart because he's choosing drinking alcohol over talking with me when he starts to get stressed, then blaming me for not stopping him from drinking by calming him down and talking him through the things that made him upset. I long for the original G, the one that's still stuck inside somewhere crying to come out, but he's gotten so good at justifying everything that I wonder if there's any original G left.
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Old 12-23-2010, 03:18 AM
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Thank you.

Unfortunately, no, I don't. As G has been jealous of me spending time with anyone else but him (he didn't even like the thought of me spending an hour a week volunteering with my old college jazz band when I lived 2 minutes away), I've been rather alienated from everyone.

I could drive to my parents' house or my grandparents' house (3 hours away) but I just got back, me doing that would make this situation worse (since this bout he blames on them), and to be honest they're not that much of an improvement. (No alcoholics, but they're the "have to be the most devout Christian ever" sort, which is rather a contradiction in terms and very difficult to cope with).

My friend at work is in Florida for the holidays, I don't have his number without my cell phone (at the apartment - too tough to grab, not near the door) and besides he lives with his girlfriend and her young daughter and I don't want to be an imposition.

I could potentially ask D at work here, but I've never even been to her house, we're only casual friends (although she is familiar with the situation), and she lives in the next state over.

I rather want my cell phone back. I have been toying with the idea of stopping at Home Depot for a new deadbolt on the way home from work. The crazy apartment complex people lost the key to the one I have on now, anyway, and have been bugging me to make them a new copy.

This is the last day that work is open before the Christmas break, and I'm rather dreading not having somewhere to run off to during the holidays. At least I've got my car running again.

To convince myself I wasn't crazy I did some research on "raging" - he claims he's not abusive and I wanted to make sure I wasn't crazy by believing that he is. I even emailed him the links.

He's very old fashioned, his father was Albanian (very patriarchal), he claims that he doesn't want to control me, and I honestly believe that he fails to realize that's exactly what he's been doing.
I'm generous and forgiving to a fault, I try to see the best in everyone, but I am usually pretty good at reading people as well. (And as things progress people are getting less and less able to get a reading on me unless I talk openly with them.)
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Old 12-23-2010, 03:38 AM
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Welcome to the SR family StarCat!

Is there a Domestic Violence program in your area?
Please reach out to them for resources of temporary shelter, counseling and other resources in your area.

The verbal assaults, manipulation, anger, and violence are all forms of abuse.

You are important and your life matters.

Please make yourself home here by reading and posting as much as needed. Reading through the sticky (permanent) posts at the top of this forum helps me with insight based on other memebers experiences. Some of our stories are posted there as well as loads of wisdom.

I hope you will be able to continue attending Alanon meetings in the near future.

Today, please reach out to your communities domestic violence office and get some immediate shelter.

Alcoholism is progressive and your partners condition is getting markedly worse. Protect yourself.

We are here to support you. You are not alone.
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Old 12-23-2010, 03:39 AM
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Here is a link from the top section that contains information about abuse in relationships:

http://www.soberrecovery.com/forums/...out-abuse.html
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Old 12-23-2010, 04:36 AM
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Prayers for peace going out....
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Old 12-23-2010, 06:29 AM
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hi starcat-

i would suggest that you call a local domestic violence center near you and explain that he is drunk, verbally abusive and throws and breaks things. they will be able to support you and let you know the resources available to you, possibly even a place to stay should things take a turn for the worse.

his behavior sounds vey controlling. surely, you're entitled to a long shower and to relax reading the newspaper!

it sounds as if he is using intimidation in order to bully you. i've found the best way to deal with an intimidator is to stand up to them. they are normally cowards. if when you stand up to him, he actually attacks you, then call the police and get a restraining order against him.

why not put some boundaries in place? start doing things differently, as in not being at his beck and call. stop doing everything he requests and start to take care of yourself.

what about joining a gym or the local YMCA so that you have a place to escape to. and hey, you could get a nice long shower there!
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Old 12-23-2010, 09:06 AM
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When I left he was being careful to make as much noise as possible without breaking anything. He even put a few things back in their place so he could make a big show of throwing them across the room a second time. Of course, I don't know how much of a mess is there, because I haven't been there since I left 13 hours ago, but nonetheless when I left he was being careful.

He hasn't tried to hurt me - yet - but last night he came close.

I spoke to the psychologist at work today. The psychologist is actually a friend of G's, which would usually make things worse, except that G went to him several months ago for help with the alcohol already. He was nowhere near the stage he's at now, so G used that as an excuse not to go to AA, because the psychologist said that not everyone needs AA to recover. (It's true, certainly, but that's not an excuse to do nothing whatsoever).
I had a two-hour talk, and I emerged with a new resolve to put my foot down and set an ultimatum. It's something I've avoided doing for a long time, but something needs to be done or I'm going to self-destruct. The hope was that G would be repentant today, since perhaps he'd understand what he put me through last night, so it would be easier to say my side of the story.

Unfortunately, that wasn't the case, as when G called and I answered he proceeded on another verbal barrage. I just "closed my ears" and waited for him to catch his breath before asking if it could be my turn to speak. After G saying "Yes" and proceeding to talk lots more, and me asking the question again, repeating this several times, I finally managed to get the main part of my story out - he can have the alcohol or me but not both. I said that if he went to the psychologist here to talk about this, and actually followed his instructions, if he wanted to come back he could do so and I would accept him with open arms - but if he kept up with the alcohol then there wasn't enough room in his life for both of us.

He picked the alcohol. He's not going to see the psychologist, and he's announced that he hopes I'm glad that I picked my father over him - always eager to shift the blame towards something else. "We get along 364 days a year, but the one time you see your parents..." Complete utter nonsense, we've been having a non-stop argument for the last three months (and quite a few similar ones spread out over the past two years).
So he decided that he's gone, he's not coming back, and he's going to celebrate Christmas with his kids without me, because "all he did was pick three places to go to dinner last night, and I ruined it". So I guess my Christmas is free - I'll have to come up with something special to do. Maybe I'll even ask my crazy dysfunctional father to stop by on Wednesday next week like he offered. He always got me on edge, but after dealing with G, it will be no problem at all... Not to mention, if he comes he'll be bringing the Hope Chest his father made for my 18th birthday, which I have been aching to have moved here ever since, as it's a beauty and has been gathering dust for way too many years.

He already moved everything out of the apartment, including the Christmas presents for his family, according to what he said on the phone - so all he needs from me is his checkbook, which I'll drop off at his mother's sometime. (I'll hold on to the bills that are already written out, since I'm more likely to mail them than he is - once that's done, though, he's on his own with the others.) I will separate myself from the emotional and financial hole he has become, and begin to build my life again.
When I mentioned about giving the keys back, he pretended he had no idea what I was talking about, so I'm just going to pick up a deadbolt on the way home today. That way he can scream and holler all he likes at my apartment door, but he still can't get in, he can only make a fool of himself. Part of me actually hopes that he'll try it, as it's about time he made a fool of himself without me covering for him... although it's a very minuscule part.

The psychologist gave me his personal cell phone number (one of the benefits of this case involving a close friend of his) and asked me to call him after speaking to G, so I'm going to wait a bit longer (he had an appointment right after I left) before calling. If he wants to go after G to come in and see him, he's welcome to it. I do know he wants G to go in, because he's worried about him as well - he offered to come in on his own nickle during the Christmas holidays - but if G won't go I can't make him.
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Old 12-23-2010, 09:49 AM
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you need to work on you now and let him sort out his own issues you are all that matters now and sounds like a good idea having your father round and the peace will work wonders give it a few days and u will begin to feel so much better just dont expect it will be the last u see of him he wil prob be back they always come back be strong and have that lovely hot shower and read the papers slowly and do whatever u feel like doing it will be bliss im sure *hugs* xxxxx
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Old 12-23-2010, 09:54 AM
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Originally Posted by kia View Post
you need to work on you now and let him sort out his own issues you are all that matters now and sounds like a good idea having your father round and the peace will work wonders give it a few days and u will begin to feel so much better just dont expect it will be the last u see of him he wil prob be back they always come back be strong and have that lovely hot shower and read the papers slowly and do whatever u feel like doing it will be bliss im sure *hugs* xxxxx
I am looking forward to making myself a cheeseburger on white toast (because I'm too lazy to pick up buns today) and setting off all the fire alarms in the apartment again when I forget to turn on the vent fans.

And perhaps I will have him up... He's completely dysfunctional, but it's more in the sense that he will avoid confrontation at all costs (even taking blame when it's not his fault, or when we were younger, not defending us from our mother and her senseless accusations), so perhaps I need to be around some dysfunction for a little while. I just have to brace my self that I won't be able to talk much (he doesn't know how to STOP talking), but sometimes being around someone that allows you to go numb and brain dead for a day is not a bad thing.

Thank you for all the well wishes. You all helped me survive until I could sort a few things out. I don't know what the future will hold, but I do know it will be different, and I am certainly looking forward to it.
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Old 12-23-2010, 11:00 AM
  # 10 (permalink)  
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well done, starcat.

if he shows up and makes a scene at your door, you can always call the police.

while the deadbolt is a good temporary solution, he could still enter the apartment if you're not home, so perhaps change the locks quickly. also, put a chair braced up against the door when you get home until you can get the deadbolt installed. i would also put the local police phone number on speed dial on your mobile phone and prepare a getaway bag with cash, a change of clothes and important cards in case things turn bad and you need to flee quickly.

from what i've seen here at SR, there is a high probability that he will call you soon, claiming undying love for you and want to come home in a day or two or more. just so you're prepared for that.
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Old 12-23-2010, 11:18 AM
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Originally Posted by naive View Post
well done, starcat.

if he shows up and makes a scene at your door, you can always call the police.

while the deadbolt is a good temporary solution, he could still enter the apartment if you're not home, so perhaps change the locks quickly. also, put a chair braced up against the door when you get home until you can get the deadbolt installed. i would also put the local police phone number on speed dial on your mobile phone and prepare a getaway bag with cash, a change of clothes and important cards in case things turn bad and you need to flee quickly.

from what i've seen here at SR, there is a high probability that he will call you soon, claiming undying love for you and want to come home in a day or two or more. just so you're prepared for that.
I know.
I am going to stick to my conditions, and he is not setting a foot inside.
I honestly don't believe he would physically hurt me - his shouting and screaming is his way of saving face, and his violence with our knickknacks last night was his way of trying to provoke me to do something. Nonetheless, I'll prepare myself anyway, as the track he's on will end up there if he doesn't stop it.

He'll have to go see the psychologist (I will have his cell phone on speed dial as soon as I have my cell phone back), and then follow through on the recommendations, before I'll even talk to him.
I can install the deadbolt tonight. I put in the one we've currently got (he was too drunk to help, sleeping out in the car), I can certainly put in a new one. The indoor kind are a lot easier to install that the outdoor one I put up at his mother's this summer. (Again, he was too drunk to hold anything steady - although he thought he was sober enough that his mother wouldn't notice.)
The change of clothes is a good idea, and I'll do that immediately when I get home.

Ha, speak of the devil, he's at work now, calling me... He forgot his password, or rather, he's too drunk to type it out.

I told him to go see the psychologist. He claims he already has, and was told that if I wouldn't stick by him, I wasn't worth it, so don't even bother. Alcohol makes people tell the tallest tales, doesn't it?
And his rating on the successful deception board is:
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Old 12-23-2010, 11:31 AM
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hi starcat-

is there anyone who can escort you home tonight? leaving is a very dangerous time. believe me, i never thought mine would hurt me either, but he did. he had never touched me before, only yelled and threw things. but as i took my stand, it descended into violence.

i just feel cautious about you entering the apartment by yourself. is there a doorman or security guard at your apartment building who can just walk up with you to the door and wait a minute while you go in and check things? or a neighbor you are friendly with?

take care now,
naive
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Old 12-23-2010, 11:45 AM
  # 13 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by naive View Post
hi starcat-

is there anyone who can escort you home tonight? leaving is a very dangerous time. believe me, i never thought mine would hurt me either, but he did. he had never touched me before, only yelled and threw things. but as i took my stand, it descended into violence.

i just feel cautious about you entering the apartment by yourself. is there a doorman or security guard at your apartment building who can just walk up with you to the door and wait a minute while you go in and check things? or a neighbor you are friendly with?

take care now,
naive
...That is a very good point.
I will be stopping at Home Depot to buy a new deadbolt first (just in case he made copies of those keys), then heading home.
There is no doorman, and while I'm friendly with several of the neighbors they've gone to be with relatives for the holidays. However, there are three doors into the apartment, and G always uses the same one, so I believe if I go in from the opposite side and take the stairs up to my floor I should be okay. (He always uses the elevator, and he's more likely to wait by the elevator or the door he always uses, rather than the apartment door, if he's going to cause trouble. If he happens to be by the apartment door, of course, it's right by the corner, so I'll smell him before he can see me - how sad is that?)

Thank you for the advice, though, I never thought of that.
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Old 12-23-2010, 11:59 AM
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Yes, do be very cautious. I never saw it coming the night mine went well and truly over the deep end with violence.

It is amazing how things like showering, relaxing with a paper and going where we want when we want become such big things. I will never surrender my freedoms again.

Hope you enjoy that cheeseburger!
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Old 12-23-2010, 05:57 PM
  # 15 (permalink)  
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hi starcat-

if you will, let us know how it goes tonight...

hopefully, you are safe and sound eating your cheeseburger, reading the paper...

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Old 12-24-2010, 05:21 AM
  # 16 (permalink)  
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I left work early, grabbed my cell phone from the apartment on the way back (made sure his car wasn't in the lot, he had put the phone back exactly where I keep it), ran out to get a deadbolt, hurried back and installed it.

I forgot how much I hate installing deadbolts. If you don't screw them on tightly enough they fall off, if you don't get the screws exactly in the holes it won't work, and if you do everything perfect and screw it on as tight as possible you can't turn the key. I had to scavenge parts from the new and the old one because the hole in the door is non-standard, but it works, it's got a new key, and it looks identical on the outside to the old one. It's also a new brand, so no chance that I snagged one that used the same key as the old one. Still no sign of G, and now I'm home safe and locked in.

We have these Bubba Burgers in the freezer. G bought them for special occasions, but they've been there for about six months. I ate two, didn't set the fire alarm off, and enjoyed every second of them. (White toast actually tastes better than most non-gourmet hamburger buns).

Looked up the local police number, programmed all their numbers and the psychologist into my phone, and cleaned up the house.

He had actually cleaned most of it before leaving for work that day. He'd removed most of the Christmas things and half his clothing (no surprise there - he told me he removed all of it, with the help of all the neighbors, and I was nowhere to be found). There were three piles of things spread around the apartment, which I cleaned up as well. He added a lot of things to my pile of donation objects for the local charity, so I guess he made a donation. He put the contents of the dining room table under the kitchen table, so I fished them out and put them back. And he had packed the entire hamper, including my clothes, into plastic bags and shoved them under the sink (including some of his clean clothes from the closet) so I'm doing laundry this morning before I take my shower.

This morning the house smells like really good hamburger, the temperature is exactly how I like it, the sink is full of dirty dishes (I always wanted to do that), and I am getting the final things in order before my shower.
Only three broken things. An over the door hook is bent completely out of shape, but he balanced the ironing board carefully on the remaining one. One of the bedroom chairs has another giant crack, but it matches all the others that were already there so I'll pull out the cherry pencil again. He also punched through the glass in the side table in the dining room, but it was held in by plastic hooks which broke first, so another trip to the hardware store will fix that one easily. (Hooray for "engineered failure" - I'll get plastic ones again).

I called G's cell phone and left him a voicemail with the requirements before I'll be around him again, and got a call back that proved he had actually tried to follow through. I gave him the psychologist's cell phone, told him the times he said he'd be unavailable, and fended off an attempt by G to get me to go along by revealing that I went yesterday. I told him not to think what I was doing was easy, because I did still love him, but because I love him I was sticking to my ground and I wasn't going to roll over this time - he needs help and I can't be the one to give it to him because he's no longer listening to me, he's killing me little by little each time he drinks. He tried to turn it back into my fault by talking about how he got divorced from his first wife over her father (verified true - his ex stole all G's savings and borrowed more in G's name to feed her father's gambling problem, she told me herself) and now it's happening with me (false).

I hung up on him then, and he called back moments later. I answered, and it was angry/vicious/vindictive G on the phone with his creepy slithering voice and I could just picture the slitted eyes and the way his face was getting red. The pause between calls was just long enough for him to polish off whatever whiskey he had smuggled into his room at his mother's last night. I will avoid talking to him until this afternoon.

If he wants to talk things through, I'm welcome to it, I am. I know he's scared and lonely and taking it out on me, and if he wants a kind voice on the phone and doesn't want to try and take advantage of me I'll talk to him and encourage him to do the right thing, but as soon as he starts blaming it on me I'm hanging up because I have better things to do.

I am hanging in there, doing well, and actually breathing freely for the first time in a long time. I am looking forward to making Pecan Pie today (for G's sister's tomorrow, we have all the ingredients, and I wanted to try the recipe) and I'll figure out some way to drop that off at his mother's with G's checkbook (he left that behind) while he's not there. His mother will be upset, but will calm down if I explain to her I'm following the psychologist's advice, and that the psychologist is a close friend of G's (I can see why G likes this guy, he is the best, and he doesn't confuse loyalty with the "right thing to do").

Thank you for all your well wishes. I'm sorry for the giant posts, I actually rewrote this to make it smaller, I just don't have anyone to talk to right now who will understand except for you guys - it means a lot to me.
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Old 12-24-2010, 05:22 AM
  # 17 (permalink)  
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Oh, no paper last night, I wanted to get everything done in case G came knocking, but I did finish off the mystery I was trying to read. Looking forward to my shower as soon as the laundry is done. <3
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Old 12-24-2010, 06:38 AM
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starcat

you have really changed your life in a matter of hours! good for you; you sound solid.

you did not ask, but i would caution you about entering a "talking" relationship with someone who has disrespected you and attacked your esteem. there was obviously something there to attract you to him - those qualities are still in him. i'm worried about you in this regard.

and....welcome to sober recovery. you're right; we do understand.

i wish you peace, and a good and healthy stint with yourself, and (hopefully) al-anon. real people who understand, and you can form friendships with, is invaluable.
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Old 12-24-2010, 06:52 AM
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Originally Posted by coffeedrinker View Post
you did not ask, but i would caution you about entering a "talking" relationship with someone who has disrespected you and attacked your esteem. there was obviously something there to attract you to him - those qualities are still in him. i'm worried about you in this regard
Thank you. All I have is a cell phone, and aside from my family (who I don't talk to for different also dysfunctional reasons) nobody really calls me. I have already set boundaries for myself - if we are talking about him getting better (and me truly getting better, once he gets to that point) I will be happy to talk to him. If he starts listing all the issues I need to work on, or something equally destructive, I will hang up. He always calls back right away, and I'll answer, but if he's still talking in the same vein I'll turn off the phone until at least half the day is past.

He is what you'd call a "high-functioning alcoholic," he'll even admit he has a problem with alcohol, but he's in denial about how bad the problem is. I know him well enough to know that if I disappear and won't talk to him at all he'll continue to blame me and not get the help he needs. If I talk to him, but hang up the phone when he starts being cruel, he'll get the message, talk down to me less, and start making some positive improvements.

I know I have to fix myself first, but if I can take five minutes twice a day to answer his phone calls (that's about as long as it takes him to degenerate into shouting right now) he'll get better faster. I do know that it's a bit dangerous (and tricky), but I also feel it will help my life get back on track (and help silence the nagging feeling in the back of my brain that I'm being the cruel one), so I feel that for now it's the right thing to do.

Later, I may change my mind, but a lot of that depends upon him.
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Old 12-24-2010, 07:08 AM
  # 20 (permalink)  
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thanks for the update, starcat.

and glad to hear you got the deadbolt installed and you are safe and sound.

i'll second coffeedrinker's advice to not enter into a talking relationship with G at this time, but i am sure you will soon come to that conclusion on your own. the problem is that it's difficult to get on with your life and your recovery when you are in contact with them.

i'm wondering why you feel to make a pecan pie and deliver it to his mother? since you have all the ingredients, why not make the pie and enjoy it yourself? i found that separating from my xABF meant i had to also separate from his friends and family, at least for the short term.

as for his checkbook, why not drop it in the post? the bank mails checkbooks to us, so i don't see why you couldn't post it to him. i would stay away from his mother's house, as he is living there. it's a recipe for disaster.

i found, for myself, it was best to go no contact as everytime i spoke to him, i got sucked back in because obviously, we are not indifferent to their well-being.

however, they are master manipulators and they become quite focused on "getting their enabler back" so that they can return to the cozy home we've created and get back to their drinking in comfort.

everytime i spoke with my xABF after i left he tried one of the following tactics:

1. i love you
2. i'm sorry, i'll change.
3. i'll go to AA but i need your help
4. threats and intimidation
5. the poor me..."no wonder you don't want to be with me, even i hate myself"
6. the medical emergency...note: this one i did fall for...beware!
7. the homeless emergency: show up sick, dirty, tired on doorstep
8. the new lover: to try to make me jealous...this one worked too in a twisted way...beware!
9. the leaving: this tactic is to leave our town and move somewhere else...obviously, an alcoholic does not have the wherewithal to actually succeed in moving, so he was always back within a few days...look at this as a drunken holiday sleeping in the car ( and the bluff it is. )
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