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I get it now...

Old 01-23-2011, 08:56 PM
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I get it now...

After much confusion and frustration on my part on me and my exah discombobulated communcation, I figured it out.

He's trying to get sober. Maybe for the first time in his life. He didn't tell me. He has a LOT of pride. But a few conversations with he's "working on himself" and things to that nature, it's clear. He was sober on the phone the last few times, and hasn't called me drunk in awhile, although I do know through the grapevine that he was sloshed this month at least one day.

So great. He's working on it! It's what I always wanted, right? A sober him?

I DON'T KNOW THIS PERSON.
And we're recently divorced. And he's creating a new self image.

I suddenly realized I'm to take the back seat again. Before, to alcohol. Now, to sobriety. Not quite ever the priority, and even less now than ever.
NOT GOOD ENOUGH. I thought he was wanting to reconnect with me!

I'm pissed. Really pissed, and not the british kind, the American angry kind.
I feel as if I'm being used to gain insight into his life, our divorce, and to use me as a memory bank for the times he was drunk, to figure out his life and why it didn't work.
But I know I'm not a priority. That is hard to take, that's the bitter pill to swallow.

But mostly, I'm a mess here, all by myself, an ex wife becoming a fading distant memory each day as he forms the new sober to be proud of himself image. He is fixing himself, and I am left wounded to fend for myself.

My head is messed up. My logic was messed with for years, as to what reality is, what sanity is, what normal behavior is, you name it.
That had a very strong destructive effect on me, and I don't even get a blue ribbon for enduring it all. I get nothing. Just exwife status and my own messed up head.
I've read all about this. I know what to expect. It's happening right now. The usual he's getting sober, and she's left with the wounds of the path of destruction.
I don't know how to work on me. All those years of insanity, all those years of pain, all those years of bad friend and family relationships because of shame, pain, anger, pain, anger, codependency, depression, you name it.
But no recognition for what we endured. No blue ribbon. Just wounded and thrown to the curb while he forms his squeaky clean new life.

For him, it's simple. Don't drink. Figure it out. Rational thoughts will come.

For me, it ain't simple. I'm left with no alcohol to blame, no new sober thoughts, no easy way to create the squeaky clean new life. Just the mess. I feel like while he partied, I went through the war, and he can't even remember the war, as he was drunk. So a lot less bad memories for him! Lucky him to have been checked out all that time.

I know some of you have fixed yourselves. Pointers please? No 12 step slogans, they don't do it for me.
I'm angry and I want validation and it isn't coming, ever.
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Old 01-23-2011, 09:05 PM
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Sorry. Really, I am. I can hear your pain and your rage loud and clear.

Unfortunately, most of what I would have to offer seems to be what you don't want to hear right now.

That's OK, and you are certainly entitled to your feelings. I doubt, though, that sustained rage will make you feel much better in the long run.

Look at it this way. You owe him nothing. You don't have to participate in his recovery. That's on him at this point. You can tell him so. If he feels wounded, that's HIS problem, not yours.

The one thing I would ask is that you not blame him for recovering. He is entitled to recover, just as he was entitled to drink.

I hope you can get past the rage so you can feel freedom, yourself.
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Old 01-23-2011, 09:17 PM
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Hi. I don't have a whole lot of wisdom or anything, but I know the feeling of anger very well. I felt it for years. He's out having the time of his life, and I'm home raising our child. Mine isn't sober or even trying to be, but that's okay. And the only reason it's okay is because it has to be.

It is good that he is sober. I'm sure taking a back seat to recovery rather than alcoholism would be the better of the two. Why worry about where you fit in with his world? Where does he fit into yours?

I no longer need a blue ribbon for enduring. I played the martyr for years, and here I am, but I'm a better person for my experience. You will be fine. Don't rate yourself on his scale. Make your own standards. Does he live up to yours?
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Old 01-23-2011, 09:20 PM
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I'm a newbie to this Soberrecovery Site, just joined. Your writing is the first post i read. I want to tell you that you do have the complete devine right to feel the way you do. So own it for awhile! i am 143 D.S. (days sober), & the hell i put my husband & 7-kids thru is awful. The things i remember but more importantly is the things i don't remember! So I am genuinely sorry for your pain!
Sereniti
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Old 01-23-2011, 09:37 PM
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Originally Posted by LexieCat View Post
Unfortunately, most of what I would have to offer seems to be what you don't want to hear right now.

That's OK, and you are certainly entitled to your feelings. I doubt, though, that sustained rage will make you feel much better in the long run.

.
Thanks Lexie, really every angle and response helps. It is recognition at least, wow, an answer, a response, on the same day! Exah makes me wait weeks sometimes for simple responses to emails, and this, after him asking for the communication.

Originally Posted by SandyM12345 View Post
Why worry about where you fit in with his world? Where does he fit into yours?

. Don't rate yourself on his scale. Make your own standards. Does he live up to yours?
Thanks Sandy. Very good points. Where does he fit into my world? I was under the impression we were going to try to go forward and repair things, and then he backs away again. I don't need a new rollercoaster.
Does he live up to my standards? No he doesn't. My standards are acknowledging my feelings, answering my emails, and not just talking about HIM.

Originally Posted by sereniti View Post

I'm a newbie to this Soberrecovery Site, just joined. Your writing is the first post i read. I want to tell you that you do have the complete devine right to feel the way you do. So own it for awhile! i am 143 D.S. (days sober), & the hell i put my husband & 7-kids thru is awful. The things i remember but more importantly is the things i don't remember! So I am genuinely sorry for your pain!
Sereniti
THanks Sereniti, for telling me it's ok to feel whatever I am feeling. Doesn't change my bad feelings, but at least I have the right to have them.
Glad for your 143 days.
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Old 01-23-2011, 09:44 PM
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K, we've established that, at this point, anyway, his idea of "communication" is driving you batsh*t.

That's a start.

How about going no contact with someone whose recovery is disturbing your serenity? You don't have to do anything irrevocable until/unless you are ready to. But how about just buying yourself some peace for awhile?

Think about it...
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Old 01-23-2011, 09:51 PM
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I am finding that recovering from my experiences with XABF (ex-"alcoholic boyfriend") have made me a stronger person, who is much better at handling the everyday emergencies in life, since even my car breaking down on a major highway is nothing compared to the side effects on our relationship caused by his love affair with Miss Whiskey.
But I had no idea that would be possible, when I was still stuck in the hurricane of confusion, and the flood of emotions that came after I cut off contact with him.

It is good that you are angry right now - it means your emotions are still intact.

You need to do whatever helps YOU feel better. He does not have to be part of your equation. If you don't want to take his calls, you don't have to. If you don't want to talk to him, you don't have to.
You need to find your own true self, and your own serenity, and it can and will take as long as it takes, and there is no way to rush the process.

The biggest thing to know is that you are not alone. Welcome to SR - you are not alone.

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Old 01-23-2011, 09:51 PM
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I have spent a whole lot of my life thinking that my feelings weren't okay. It hurts so much to feel that way. One thing that stands out to me is when he would constantly criticize me, I would say" Let me know if I do anything right today? Kind of as a joke, but not really...

I know the anger, and yes, you have every right to feel angry. Don't supress the feelings, as I did for years.

I'm so sorry you are dealing with this right now. Love and prayers
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Old 01-23-2011, 10:04 PM
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Originally Posted by LexieCat View Post
K, we've established that, at this point, anyway, his idea of "communication" is driving you batsh*t.

That's a start.

How about going no contact with someone whose recovery is disturbing your serenity? You don't have to do anything irrevocable until/unless you are ready to. But how about just buying yourself some peace for awhile?

Think about it...
I think Lexie has a great point. He is your EXAH - right?

You have ALL the right in the world to feel the way you do. We didn't sign up for this, we surely don't deserve it but we will get through it and be OK ... I think we will be better than before actually. What doesn't kill us - makes us stronger, right? That's what I'm running with!!
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Old 01-23-2011, 10:35 PM
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Welcome and you are SO not alone.

I am going through very similar feelings and situation. And because I am standing here with the fresh collateral damage at my feet from being with an alcoholic/drug addict for three years, I don't quite have a lot of wisdom to share with you... just empathy, compassion, and a deep understanding of what you are feeling and dealing with.

I feel like a walking wound who has lost EVERYTHING (almost my very life) and HE is living his life, with a new woman, without any responsibilties to our daughter or the wreckage that his addictions and behavior created. He even said to me after he got clean and right before we broke up that he had forgiven himself for everything, was moving on with his life, and starting fresh. That he had closed the door on the past. No amends. No financial restitution. No "how can I make things right". Nothing. He didn't even remember most of what happened while we were together, because he was blacked-out or on so many pills.

So, the rage that I feel right now around being left with all the raw and vivid experiences and memories of everything that happened and being left alone to raise our daughter, is sometimes unbearable. It truly feels like there is no justice sometimes.

Anyways... one minute at a time, I am trying to pick up the pieces. It's a long process but at least now, I have the space and room to do healthy things for myself as much as I can. And at least I have this forum for support. It really does make a huge difference talking to people who really GET IT.

Wishing you peace, ~Sasha
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Old 01-24-2011, 12:37 AM
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Sorry, no words or pointers. Just standing here with you feeling very similar feelings towards XAH. I'll offer a hug and then offer to hold a punching bag still for ya if that will help.
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Old 01-24-2011, 03:41 AM
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Honey, you have every right to be angry! Let it out. Then move on. As long as you keep focusing on him, what he's doing, what he did to you, etc., you can never move on for you. Refocus on you. Improve your life. Give yourself attention. He doesn't deserve any more of your time and attention. You do. Hugs!
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Old 01-24-2011, 05:00 AM
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Originally Posted by jds0401 View Post
(I'm American...what's the other kind of pissed??)
In the UK, "pissed" is a slang word for "drunk".
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Old 01-24-2011, 06:26 AM
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In the UK, "pissed" is a slang word for "drunk".
I heard one on "Coronation Street" that I love.
Legless.

I was legless last night!

brokenheartfool,

I do remember being so furious with my ex, I actually wanted to do physcial damage.
Mine was like StarlightSasha's all talk and no remorse.
And the new girlfriend who kept him from scheduled visits with his children.
I only later realized it was because he was actually supposed to be responsible now.
He had hidden for a long time, and now we were living near his family, and they got first hand knowledge of his problem.
When I was that angry, I would use that energy for something positive, because it surely would not help anything to try to deal with him.

Beth

Last edited by wicked; 01-24-2011 at 06:33 AM. Reason: add some stuff
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Old 01-24-2011, 06:35 AM
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For me:

No Contact + Forgiveness = Serenity
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Old 01-24-2011, 10:09 AM
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Ahhh...validation. My hole to fall into every time I try to talk with my now R-AH. It's a deep, jagged hole full of bitterness, anger and resentment. Will he ever truly be sorry for his behavior? Probably. Will I ever get validated for the amazing strength I possess for putting up with his BS, probably not. *BIG SIGH*

I am learning that validation comes from me and only me (and my higher power, too!). And I am learning that writing that "never to be sent" letter and re-reading it everyday helps the anger dissipate a little each day. Hoping for the day I wake up and don't feel anger at all; just compassion for the man that I love. Then I'll know its time to move forward.

Let yourself be pissed off - break something if that helps (I broke an entire set of wineglasses on my concrete garage floor. They were headed for Salvation Army anyway). Go exercise the energy off. Put that energy to good use and it will help you feel better.

Take good care, and know you are amongst a lot of people here dealing with their own anger and disappointments. You are not alone.
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Old 01-24-2011, 10:55 AM
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I had a long post but really what it boils down to is this.

If not drinking is his simple answer, maybe not talking to the drinker is yours. No contact can clear away enormous amounts of confusion and rational thoughts will come - I promise!

They say the best revenge is to live a good life.

Some ways I get validation..... 1) Coming to SR, where people really understand. 2) Recognizing that I wouldn't trade my life for his for even 10 minutes. 3) Owning the hard road I came down. I did feel broken and like a mess at times but I'm still here, I'm still me - a smarter and wiser me no less. I will not be defined by my life as an alcoholics wife or an ex wife. I refuse to allow myself to think in those terms. 4) Focus on myself. His life (good, bad, better, sober, drunk, happy, sad, real, fake, rich, poor, peaceful, or chaotic) is not a barometer of mine. Not any more.

You work on you just like you work on anything else. You show up. You do one thing that moves you in the right direction, and then one more thing, and you don't have to know what the 5th thing is - you'll know what it is when you get there.

So today, what is one thing you can do that will increase your own inner serenity?

I'm pondering this for myself now too. I'm going to think of one thing I can do as well.
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Old 01-24-2011, 11:09 AM
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I haven't been where you are so I can't help much but what I can say is this.

It seems like you've been around the block and you already know this isn't about him anymore. He's doing his recovery and you need to do yours.

I'll say that you write exceptionally well. If anything, writing may help drain that angry little bottle you have. For me, anger is something I feel towards someone else. While it can be helpful for me and somewhat protective, I'm still left dealing with an emotional feeling for someone else which really has nothing to do with me. So I say, release that anger.

...and much to what Thumper says, come here and talk about it. Sounds like you've been seeking validation from your AH when perhaps you need some clear minded validation from people who know exactly what you mean.

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Old 01-24-2011, 11:33 AM
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I'm a mess here, all by myself, an ex wife becoming a fading distant memory each day as he forms the new sober to be proud of himself image. He is fixing himself, and I am left wounded to fend for myself.
Let's change perspectives here.
You are not "the ex-wife." That's still his perspective you're using, defining yourself in terms of him instead of yourself.

You are YOU. You're a victor, not a victim. You're a strong woman who needs to take the time -- much like when you move -- to sort through what's your stuff, what's his stuff (that goes in the trash), and what you want to take with you to the rest of your life. And the rest of your life can be a life that's a life where YOU play the lead role rather than the wingman to some self-important, self-centered jerk.

It's OK to see things in that perspective. Trust me. It really is. (((hugs)))
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Old 01-24-2011, 12:56 PM
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Thumper and I think alike. The most peace I have is when I am not talking to XAH. How he responds to me from one day to the next is never consistent and the days he chooses to make me feel guilty are days that leave me feeling angry and bitter. So, since I don't know when those will be, I choose to keep communication to texting or, if it must be a phone call, to a minimum with boundaries.

BTW - have you read Co-Dependent No More? Beaty has a really interesting take on how the A numbs anger and stress with alcohol but codies are left to stew in their anguish. Makes a lot of sense.
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