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rebuilding trust takes a long time

Old 02-17-2011, 05:40 PM
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rebuilding trust takes a long time

Just thinking about the focus over the last 6 months with me and my AH. He told me that his counselor told him it will take a long time for me to trust him. So I said to him, ok how I am going to trust you.

Well he keeps telling me he's not drinking and so that's the truth and I need to believe him. The problem is he is not living with us, my kids visit with him every other weekend and for the most part we do not communicate except counseling sessions 2x month and intermittent times trying to get together, not very successful just yet.

There have been a few times when I am sure I called him and he was drinking and then some times I've seen him and his behavior suggests he must have had a few days of drinking (weekends when my kids are not with him).

I am starting to believe that if the focus to him is whether or not I trust him it most likely means he has no desire to be sober and recover from alcohol.

I am a lot calmer now since attending Alanon and he is happy about that. I think he is counting on me getting to the point where I won't care about his drinking and he can just move back in and continue drinking without me interfering.

Each time in counseling I seem to be getting better at verbalizing that I do not want to live with an alcoholic who is not in recovery, yet I never seem to be able to clearly say that it is not acceptable for AH to continue to expect me to trust him and he needs to take action to rebuild trust. Or is this something that is not acceptable for me to say as it is not really a boundary but trying to control?

I am aware that I cannot force him to seek recovery and as alcoholism is a disease I'm trying to rid myself of the "if you love me" thinking and what I am left with is no trust for AH, only trust for myself and my HP.

Also it seems I am avoiding putting a time limit on this since, in essence, it is true that I will have to get to a point of trusting my AH is actively seeking recovery and I don't really know if I can ever get there as I don't even know what that would look like with someone who has been lying to me about his drinking for the last 6 years and who has been, unknown to me, functioning alcoholic, getting progressively worse, for probably more than 20 years of our marriage.

Maybe I am the one who needs to stop focusing so much on trust?
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Old 02-17-2011, 06:27 PM
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Each time in counseling I seem to be getting better at verbalizing that I do not want to live with an alcoholic who is not in recovery, yet I never seem to be able to clearly say that it is not acceptable for AH to continue to expect me to trust him and he needs to take action to rebuild trust. Or is this something that is not acceptable for me to say as it is not really a boundary but trying to control?

I am aware that I cannot force him to seek recovery and as alcoholism is a disease I'm trying to rid myself of the "if you love me" thinking and what I am left with is no trust for AH, only trust for myself and my HP.

Also it seems I am avoiding putting a time limit on this since, in essence, it is true that I will have to get to a point of trusting my AH is actively seeking recovery and I don't really know if I can ever get there as I don't even know what that would look like with someone who has been lying to me about his drinking for the last 6 years and who has been, unknown to me, functioning alcoholic, getting progressively worse, for probably more than 20 years of our marriage.

Maybe I am the one who needs to stop focusing so much on trust?


I am so bonding with you!
I moved out to a new state and now we are in phone counseling.
I can't trust without action on his part and I'm not seeing it.
I can't trust without true change of heart and I'm not seeing it.
I can't rebuild intimacy without these things.
The therapist was saying my AH can't grow without intimacy and trust, but I said I GAVE him those things in the past and STILL got hosed when I found he was lying and drinking and hiding it.
Why would I expect that if I gave it to him now anything would change?

Stick to your guns, missy! You're not being unreasonable and you deserve honesty and respect.
Hugs
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Old 02-17-2011, 06:57 PM
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Or is this something that is not acceptable for me to say as it is not really a boundary but trying to control?
IMO what you are saying is entirely acceptable, and wise. It's been my experience that people who tell me I need to trust them are people who are trying to get something from me that they want. Funny how no one has ever said this to me except for drunks and drug addicts who have lied to and cheated on me. I also have been in your situation where they say I need to trust them but do nothing differently to show they are trustworthy.
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Old 02-17-2011, 07:53 PM
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Originally Posted by Learn2Live View Post
IMO what you are saying is entirely acceptable, and wise. It's been my experience that people who tell me I need to trust them are people who are trying to get something from me that they want. Funny how no one has ever said this to me except for drunks and drug addicts who have lied to and cheated on me. I also have been in your situation where they say I need to trust them but do nothing differently to show they are trustworthy.
Same here. My ex was adamant that I trust him, he even make sure to make his point to our couples therapist.
One night, he went on and on about how I need to trust him, that he wasn't cheating on me and that it was all in my head.
I caught him cheating 4 days later.

I always believed trust could be build, and it can, only when the person who betrayed the trust does a spiritual 180. And that takes YEARS and a lot of willingness
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Old 02-17-2011, 08:43 PM
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I really appreciate your having started this thread, and all of the posts in response.

Just last might my ABF got angry at me because I said that I thought he was drinking again because he smelled like it. Although I didn't mention this part, he has also been forgetful and exagerated like he used to be when he drank. He lied to me through 3 previous drinking spells and just last week I helped him (a bit, but too much for my comfort) through his pretrial on an open bottle charge. So, my gut was certain- he was/is drinking. He immediately got mad and raised his voice and swore and all when I said that he smelled like alcohol and then told me I should trust him. The "you should trust me" thing seems insane. irresponsible at least. Like we shouldn't ever expect a hurricane in the Gulf of Mexico or an earthquake in California, cuz all that history and experience means nothing.

Anyway, I'm really glad you brought this up. It's (obviously) been kinda bugging me today. Learn2Live... me too- those are the only people who have said that to me too.
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Old 02-17-2011, 09:31 PM
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Repeat the words over & over to yourself....Only trust for myself and my HP.

My 15 years of marriage seems alot like yours, but the drinking got progressively worse
over the past year. Thats what the diesase does!! Sneaky & Slow, grabs you and your kids right by the ankles before you know what even bite you...

Mine spent 10 grand for rehab, has been home a short time..Sober, but still a living nightmare...I left town this weekend, came home Sunday afternoon. He was sick and he even coughed like he was sick. So he went to bed early. I asked him if he went to his meeting, he said yep...End of conversation...I went to bed and thought about it, the next morning I asked him, were you drinking Saturday night...Dang! IF LOOKS could of killed...Okay, I guess that meant no.
Today, my neighbor came into my work, who watches my house 24/7, due to past drunk stories. He tells me" Boy your old man never left all weekend, whats going on"

So what do you think he did?

Im blonde, but it's by a bottle of Clairol..."THANKS"

I would have to say that I am learning this::: "Trust "MYSELF" First" I think we tend to forget that, in all of their crazy ways of life....
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Old 02-18-2011, 11:05 AM
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I am starting to think, even if they get help, it is a tough road. ALmost as tough as the road we have been down with all the drinking. I feel I have wasted too much time already and why would I want to put myself through another rollercoaster ride.
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Old 02-18-2011, 12:31 PM
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When my rabf was still active, but faking it, he blamed me for not trusting him. Actually said that my mistrust was the reason he drank!!!WTF!!!

Now, over 1 year later, he is serious about recovery, and has been sober for 1year. He understands that it will take lots of good positive action over a long period of time for me to trust him. He is glad to have the opportunity to regain that trust, and he is not at all resentful that he doesn't have it from me or my daughter who was living with us as well.

I trust myself now.

Real recovery is definitely different, and because I have been recovering myself, I have more confidence in my own instincts.
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Old 02-18-2011, 06:33 PM
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I'm struggling with how to phrase this...

...so I'll just say this. He is drinking. Every time you think he may have been drinking it's because he's drinking.

YOU KNOW THIS!

Cyranoak

P.s. I was a gnat's hair from "Good Lord Woman!" ing you.
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Old 02-19-2011, 08:06 PM
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My AH told me he quit drinkig in Jan of last year. This was after I had said I was leaving him becaue of the Alcohol. There were times I thought he was drinking, I even flat out asked him ..he always had an excuse for why it would 'seem' that way. He swore to me he wasn't. Then on the 4th of July, I KNEW he was. I actually breathilized him. He swore the test was wrong. so I decided then and there..do I have him take the 2nd test in the box..and have him claim both are defective or do I do the right thing..so "I" took the other test..knowing I hadn't had a drink, it was obvious that one test wouldn't be defective..and he WAS drinking. He admitted that everyone except I knew about it. His friends (who were ALL at my house the month before for my son's graduation party) all knew and chose not to tell me that he was drinking and driving my kids around behind my back for 6 months!
Trust? What the #$%^ is that?
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Old 02-19-2011, 08:31 PM
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Originally Posted by Cyranoak View Post
...so I'll just say this. He is drinking. Every time you think he may have been drinking it's because he's drinking.

YOU KNOW THIS!

Cyranoak

P.s. I was a gnat's hair from "Good Lord Woman!" ing you.
Cyranoak, You are showing restraint! I hope you're feeling ok...

Rebuilding trust does take a long time. And a lot of action. I can hear the words, but if the action doesn't match the words, the words mean nothing. No test, no proving is going to change the reality of what is. What is - simply is what is. I hate that. I wish I could change what is. But I can't.

Funny - I have not yet asked my RAH is he was drinking - ever. Probably because of what cyranoak says above. If I feel like he is, its because he probably is. What more proof do I need? Do I need to be right in his eyes? No. I don't.

At the risk of sounding tedious - are you going to meetings yourself? Might be a good time to practice detachment skills. It makes the quacking a bit easier to handle. IMHO.
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Old 02-19-2011, 09:53 PM
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Absolutely spot on in the above statements. 100% of the time when I suspect my wife of drinking AND I choose to look for real evidence, I find it. EVERY SINGLE TIME. I don't even bother looking for evidence any more. If I think she has been drinking by any one of a 100 different things, then she has. Then when stone cold busted, she will concoct the most ridiculous story imaginable. The stories would be more believable if she included aliens in the tale.

She has NEVER, and I meant NOT ONE SINGLE TIME has she ever come clean when I asked about her drinking. Even when I say I know the answer, she still denies.

They lie. That's what they do. They blame us. That's what they do. They prey upon our good nature. They do and say whatever they have to do or say in order to get US to behave the way they want. They have trained us well.

No amount of being reasonable with them will result in them being reasonable in return. They are unreasonable from the start. We just expect them to be reasonable because we are. We don't think like they do. Their brain works in a different way. This was the most difficult aspect for me to accept.
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Old 02-20-2011, 03:04 PM
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It's been my experience that people who tell me I need to trust them are people who are trying to get something from me that they want.
To me, it's a lot like a three-year-old who comes in the room and says, "I did NOT eat the chocolate in the kitchen!"... Trust is earned, a trustworthy person knows this, and doesn't talk, they act. Methinks he protesteth too much.
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