Is Damage Forever??

Old 02-04-2011, 11:31 PM
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Is Damage Forever??

Long story short (or atleast I will

Im one of those wives who has been living without the education on alcoholism. Thought all they had to do is just quit drinking..It was a choice. Well, after attending 2 days of classes at my AH 30 day rehab center & tons of reading. Guess I blew smoke out of my mouth for 15 years for nothing.
I learned alot about the effects & affects..Big eye opener!!

Married, with 2 grown kids (Mine,not his). Many years of protecting & guarding against his stupid behavior or verbal abuse.

There was a couple of choices that he made along the way with my daughter, that lead me to hell in my life. Took her to a bar underage,
would text her mean things & call her names. (which I just found out 2 months ago) Threanted to hurt her boyfriend & take her baby away from her.

As a mom I protected her, then I protected her double time from him. So I have learned that I totally smoothered her, without knowing what I did.

This pushed her away from me, she soon got on drugs, was in an abusive relationship & married him anyways, followed with a baby. The past 2 years, I havent had much of a relationship with her. She has called me every name in the book & wished me to rot & go to ______. She tells everyone what a bad mom I am and just NOW after 2 years, she tells everyone my husband "likes her". They use to be best friends and now this...WTH???

He swears up & down, he never did anything, he never had no blackouts. All he says is, she is on drugs and he is sorry for taking her to the bar. Admits he was acting like a friend instead of a father figure..(Thats what alcoholics do, you know) so his group session have told him...bad choices!

I have NEVER really forgiven him for that, I try..But it keeps on coming up...
I believe it was his choice, and now I pay. I have lost my daughter over it.
If he wouldnt have done it, she would of stayed living at home and continued to be a fun loving beautiful lady. But I moved her away, once again, to protect her from all of the awful rumors in a small town. She was excited to move & we stayed very close for the next year..Then it all went down the toliet..

My son is awesome.He tells me all the time, Mom, your the best mom ever!!!
He is about the only person who keeps me sunny side up in life.
I busted my rear my entire life to make a good life for my kids, They are everything to me..My son calls me everyday, just to say he loves me.

So 2 years later, I have all of the symptons: Broken home, messed up kid, hiding out, locked up keys/purse, financial mess, broken heart, no trust, guilt, and a hole lot of sadness, with a huge sack of confussion.

While he was in his 30 day rehab, I packed up all of my kids things, cried over all of their baby pictures. (All I wanted was a normal happy family)
Boxed up most of my sentimental things & donated the rest. The house seems very empty, but very clean

We are still living in the same house together now, and that is NOT easy!! I have lots of resentment & a whole lot of mixed feelings that I dont know how to sort out.

There are alot of questions that I just cant find the answers too about my life.I feel like I have lost my everything..My kids, My daughter, My husband, My family.....

Will I ever get to see my daughter or my grandbaby? Will I ever trust him? What is love? Why am I staying here? What do I do now? Will I ever get that thing back called, family??..The list goes on...

With him home now, he is gone almost every night to classes. Has lots of short term memory loss..(that he says will come back in time) lack of work ethics, lack of self hygeine and of course slurps his coffee, which drives me nuts! lol I thought he would come home & be ready to get out there & work like a man.NOT..Not much of a drive there, likes to drink coffee now & talk on his phone alot..I have heard the "Im sorry, but thats in the past & today Im sober, wish I could change it, but I cant" sorry...

Our friends are gone. I have learned what hibernation is all about. Hiding him and hiding from people. Hiding his drinking. Hiding my hurt & hiding my broken heart...Never realized what I was doing until now.

His counselor told me, He has been a hard drinker for many years (Straight Whiskey, a 5th every 3 days then progressed to one - 5th a day) so dont expect miracles to happen over night..That made me feel much

I swore I was not going to be his mother anymore: I dont cook, clean, grocery shop, pay bills..unless it is for me. He doesnt understand that part yet..Take a look around the house..YUCK!

Our conversations consist of whats going on with the guys at rehab,the dogs and on a good day..the weather. He is a very kind person inside & does have a great heart, when he is sober. How long will that last, is my question..
He is the nicest guy you could ever meet. But you give my little kitty a platter of milk & he turns in a tiger! People around us, dont have much respect for him left and they dont understand the effects of an alcoholic & the behind the door scene at home. We are surrounded with alot of heavy drinkers, but of course they dont see it as a problem. Im not a drinker, so
to me it doesnt take much to seem like a person is a heavy drinker.
In the publics eye, they see it just as I did..They can just stop quit drinking..

Pressure is on from him, his family & everyone on my side "So whats your plans?"....Crap....If I only had a plan, I could give everyone a answer.

How do you know, when damage is trashed, beyond repair?

I keep on working the steps, but feel like it's a revolving door...
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Old 02-05-2011, 01:19 AM
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Hi there,
I'm afraid I don't have the answers you seek, my ex never went to rehab and my children are little so I have no experience to share. Others will be along with more informed insights. But I wanted to say hello! I am glad you found us (but sorry for the reason), I have found this forum a wonderful source of support and insight, I hope you do too.

I'm sure you've heard of the three C's in the inpatient days:

You didn't cause it,
you can't control it and
you can't cure it.

(goes for husband and daughter too)

The decisions you made in the past re your daghter were made from love and a desire to protect her, you did the very best you could with the information to hand, none of us have a crystal ball, we can't tell how our children will react to our parenting, and she is now an adult responsible for her own decisions and actions.
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Old 02-05-2011, 05:08 AM
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Welcome to the SR family!

You have found a wonderful source of information and support. I encourage you to read and post as much as needed.

You have been through so much. You are not alone. We understand. You are at a point in your journey where you are aware of the things that have gone on around you. Now you are at the stage of finding acceptance, then comes action. (Three A's of Recovery: Awareness, Acceptance, Action)

I found this website, my Alanon Group meetings, and self-help books to be very helpful in guiding me along my recovery journey. I have had to learn to be patient with myself. It took time to get into a life that was unmanageable, and it is taking time to get my life back. Please be patient with yourself during the process.

I always find wisdom in the permanent (sticky) posts at the top of the forum pages. Here is one of my favorite posts:
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Old 02-05-2011, 05:42 AM
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I second the idea of trying Al-Anon. It will help you sort out your feelings in terms of both your husband and your daughter.

I'd be the last to defend taking an underaged person to a bar, not to mention texting and saying mean things to them, but those alone did not cause your daughter's problems, any more than your overprotective response did.

Your husband has barely begun his recovery. It took me months and months before my personal hygiene was up to par (when you are drinking and feeling bad about yourself you tend not to care--and it takes time before you care again and start feeling worth the effort).

Let him tend to his recovery--you need to get busy on your own. Not for him, but for yourself.

Glad you're here with us.
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Old 02-05-2011, 06:21 AM
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Hi BobbyJ, to Sober Recovery.

I am glad you had the opportunity to go to the rehab family sessions and learn about alcoholism. Reading about the disease of alcoholism (and addiction) truly helped me to get emotional distance from the alcoholics and addicts in my life, some of whom are permanent in my life such as family I don't want to completely exclude, and some of whom are people I allow into my daily life (past, present or future). Getting this emotional distance is part of detachment and it frees me up to focus on that which I CAN control: Me.

Whether or not the damage that has been done can be undone IMO is not the question. Because thinking this way truly neglects what you can control in your life, and focuses on whether or not someone is going to do what we want them to do to "fix" or "undo" how they treat(ed) us in a relationship. No, you cannot undo the past BobbyJ, and you cannot dictate how someone else treats us, but you can improve your future and you can treat yourself the way you want to be treated, no matter what anyone else does or doesn't do.

For me, the true question is what do YOU want for your life? What are your personal dreams, goals, ambitions, wishes, interests, etc? Because when we neglect or ignore those things, we neglect and ignore OURSELVES. Doing so tends to cause us to focus on others and how they make us feel, and just react to whatever occurs in our lives. Being in a close relationship with an alcoholic or addict is exhausting. The focus and attention tends to be taken up entirely by THEM, what they want, what they do, how they behave, what they say, etc. There is barely time or energy to devote to ourselves and our self-care. And the anger created by living with a person like this can overwhelm a person's life. We remain in reaction mode.

Can you make a list? A list of all the things you want for your life, how it looks and feels, what activities and goals you would like for yourself? Because once we know what we want, and have it really concrete in our minds, then we have something to make decisions by. Lists have always helped me to remember every day what I need to remember. We can use it to decide what we are going to do next in order to get where we want to go. We can use it to decide whether or not whatever comes into our life matches up with what WE want for our life.

It seems as though one of the things you would like is to have a better relationship with your daughter. If that is the case, I would suggest that first you examine how you feel about the past and the present with regards to this relationship, and then to forgive yourself for any "mistakes" you may have made. To lose the guilt and blame and shame surrounding her and how the way you raised her may have caused her addiction and/or alcoholism. Because NONE of that is yours to own BobbyJ. I assume that she is in her twenties and honestly, a woman in her twenties is a grown woman, completely capable of making her own decisions about her life. SHE chooses to drink or drug as SHE sees fit. That is not on you. And what comes out of her mouth about you is MEANT to guilt, blame and shame YOU into accepting responsibility for HER choices and behavior. Those things are a huge part of alcoholism and addiction (having a scapegoat, someone to blame in order to continue the addictive behavior).

Well, this post is loaded. I hope something I've said here is helpful to you. What I know from my own life is that you have two paths before you. One is a path of Recovery, and the other is a path that continues down the same road from which you have come. I chose the path of Recovery and it changed my life for so much better. I started with Al-Anon and hope you will consider doing so too. (((hugs))) :ghug3
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Old 02-05-2011, 07:04 AM
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Welcome BobbyJ

I don't actually have anything to add but wanted to say hello and add my support to the pile!

This forum keeps me sane! Keep reading, keep posting....there is a wealth of experience and support here from folks who really do understand.

I am sorry for the reason you are here BUT am so glad you have joined us.

All the best Phiz
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Old 02-05-2011, 07:35 AM
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Al anon...
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Old 02-05-2011, 09:38 AM
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Welcome, and hope you use this forum to continue your "education" because it is your power to change your life. Read everything you can get your hands on, go to Al-Anon, and learn to pray - even if its only the Serenity Prayer.

The hardest thing I deal with is forcing myself to slow down and take it one day at a time. I understand the concept but doing it is difficult! There feels like A LOT of stuff to clean up and move on from, but if I focus on EVERYTHING, I lose sight of me in the process. Try to get through one day, then another, then another. It took a long time for you to get here; only time and healing will carry you forward to get into a new place in your universe.

You are not alone. Take good care!
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Old 02-06-2011, 09:11 PM
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Thanks everyone for all of the great feedback. ( I digested it all weekend )

Most of the time, I can vent more online, than I can inside of the class room.

Living in a very small community, you learn not to show too much of your dirty laundry.

Wishing at my age, I could physically do the limbo, instead of just in my mind!!!
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