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REALLY bad weekend

Old 03-07-2011, 06:41 AM
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REALLY bad weekend

I got home Fri to find my (attempting to recovery- so he says)alcoholic husband in a decent mood. I didn't let myself get hopeful about this as I would have in the past. Maybe sensing my trying to stay a bit detatched he went all out, thanking me for being so supportive, telling me he wants to get a sitter and go out together, asking me what I want to do for me over the weekend.... Nice stuff.

I had plans to go out with my mom Fri night. I debated changing plans with her to Sat and doing something with H Fri night but didn't.

I went out with my mother and as the evening went on started getting texts from H telling me he missed me and was eager to see me when I got back. I wanted desperately to believe this was genuine but my gut told me that this was a sign he was drinking (he is very predictable and does the same things everytime). I didn't think more about it, had a nice time and went home looking fwd to seeing him (BIG MISTAKE- I let myself hope I guess?)

I got home and he was drunk. I tried to put on my best poker face but my sadness showed and he wanted to talk (and acted like he was sorry which sucked me in). I said I wanted to just go to bed and he asked me to stay and talk which I did. It was a waste of breath and a lot of me trying to "educate" him about what he does and give him ideas about how to develop a relapse prevention plan (I mean, I really have gotten obsessed with trying to be his savior and it's made me as crazy as him).

I went to bed with him telling me he was going to continue drinking and that he hoped this wouldn't alter our plans for a nice rest of the weekend. I told him I couldn't promise him anything.

The rest of the weekend went like this: I was disappointed, took his drinking on Fri personally, saw it as a sign that the nice things he'd said to me on Fri were just a scam, resented him for expecting to drink and lie to me and still think that he'd get to have me be eager to have this "nice" weekend he had planned with him....

I took our kids for a day trip on Sat (that I'd hoped he'd join us on). Instead he made a HUGE show of telling me in intricate detail what he was going to do to work on his program during the day (it involved starting to write and make a plan etc...). I did not ask him to tell me this or respond other than to say, okay.

I got home late Sat afternoon and he came running to tell me how hard he'd worked all day (despite evidence that he'd been watching movies all day) and that he'd "read" and thought a lot about what he wants to do. I tried to get out of the room and not show I was upset but he stood and wanted to "talk" and I teared up. He got angry and asked what was wrong and I like an IDIOT told him. I said that he'd made a HUGE to do about what he was going to do while we were gone and I'd believed/hoped it meant he was eager to take recovery seriously. I said that he had AGAIN told me one thing and done another and then he started in with the justifying and rationalizing and excusing of not doing what he said and how the problem was me and I need to be more flexible etc...

Of course we argued, I cried, etc... A few hrs later came the apologies and the everything I said (him saying this) was wrong and I'm sorry to do this to you etc... Then he wanted to hang out, have dinner together and act like it was a normal evening. I went to bed instead.

Sunday I suggested he visit his family since he doesn't make it to see them often. He left and did so. I had a nice day with our children. He texted me (when he relies on texting instead of calling it is a sure fire sign that he is avoiding interaction bc he is either a) drinking b) has been supported in his sick, resentment filled thinking - which he gets a good dose of whenever he spends time with his enmeshed, alcoholic, hateful toward me family.

He came home and was looking for a fight. Nothing I said was right and I just limited my contact with him and stuck to facts and was as emotionless as possible. The result? I was confronted and told that I was being disrespectful and that he could not work on recovery living in an environment where he was disrespected so much. He went on to tell me he has given up all power for "self preservation" and that's why he does't initiate anything or make plans and it is why he is justified in lying to me.

The result was a 4 hour fight that resulted in me thinking I might go crazy.

I am distraught and beyond confused.

He is sober and he is WORSE than ever. The things he is saying to me are the same things he'd say when drinking but I could excuse them bc he was drinking and tell myself it wasn't personal and he didn't mean it. But he is sober and saying the same things so obviously it IS personal and he does mean it.

I can't take the lying, the broken promises, the blaming, the projecting and when I try to detach he pulls out all the stops to get me to engage. And when I am nice he takes advantage of me. He loves me one minute and hates me the next. It is HELL living like this and at the end of the day it will be me who has to leave when I reach a "I can't take it anymore" point.

I want him to change so that I can stay and we can have a chance at a normal family. If I stay it will be bc I am willing to accept and tolerate living with all these behaviors and never expecting different. I want him to see that he is throwing away my love, our family etc... and for that to matter. And it doesn't. All that matters is that he has someone to blame and for as long as I am around that's me....

I am addicted with wanting him to change so much and I can't figure out how to stop and how to accept that he won't change and make the next step...
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Old 03-07-2011, 06:49 AM
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I'm so sorry. I do think that you have pinpointed the danger of living with an alcoholic - yourself becoming crazier day by day.
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Old 03-07-2011, 07:04 AM
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Originally Posted by stella27 View Post
I'm so sorry. I do think that you have pinpointed the danger of living with an alcoholic - yourself becoming crazier day by day.

Yeah you're right... How does one live with an alcoholic and not get sucked into their b.s.?
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Old 03-07-2011, 07:04 AM
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Your post makes me remember the insanity. Have you ever gotten one of those e-mails that says "click here" and the target moves when you try to click on it? That is what it is like to try and live with an alcoholic.

Giving you a hug this morning, wanttobe.
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Old 03-07-2011, 07:07 AM
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Originally Posted by wanttobehealthy View Post
I am addicted with wanting him to change so much and I can't figure out how to stop and how to accept that he won't change and make the next step...
...perhaps, instead of becoming addicted to wanting him to change, you could find a way to remove him from the situation and become addicted to change instead?

Then all these little things you are doing to change yourself and your environment - convincing him to see his family so you can have some time without him, going on day trips with your children, going to bed rather than getting pulled into the drama - can fulfill this requirement for change, because you have taken the power away from him and given it to yourself.
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Old 03-07-2011, 07:10 AM
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Originally Posted by RollTide View Post
Your post makes me remember the insanity. Have you ever gotten one of those e-mails that says "click here" and the target moves when you try to click on it? That is what it is like to try and live with an alcoholic.

Giving you a hug this morning, wanttobe.

So is the answer that it simply is nearly impossible to have peace, no matter how much you TRY to detach when living with an A?

I really feel the rug has been pulled out from under me... I started to be able to not take things personally when he was drinking bc I could blame the alcohol... but sober, he's the same and there's nothing to blame.

His behavior is not all attributable to alcoholism... I think he is just abusive through and through and probably would be whether he was a drunk or not.

I am sick over the fact that I either live like this indefinitely or tear my kids' lives apart and throw away the hope of a family...

I think that I've made my decision (to leave) and I need to figure out how to have this conversation.
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Old 03-07-2011, 07:20 AM
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Not to sound harsh, but if the two of you are having 4 hour fights, your kids' lives are already in chaos. I've heard it said, and agree that, it's better to have come from a broken home than to live in one. They deserve to have at least one sane parent and it sounds to me like you are it. Yes, your husband is emotionally abusive and you deserve better. Now that you can see that his past abuse wasn't due to drinking, it's easier to see that it's just who he is.

Again, you deserve better and so do your children.
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Old 03-07-2011, 07:34 AM
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He's not sober if he was drinking on Friday.

And what Suki said.
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Old 03-07-2011, 07:36 AM
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Originally Posted by wanttobehealthy View Post
So is the answer that it simply is nearly impossible to have peace, no matter how much you TRY to detach when living with an A?
In some cases it is possible to detach and still live with the A... but not when the A is also abusive.
Abuse is used to control, and detachment is separating from the A's control, so the abuse will escalate the more detachment is used.

You might want to take a look at this book study, I think you might find some answers.
http://www.soberrecovery.com/forums/...apter-one.html
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Old 03-07-2011, 07:37 AM
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Even if he woke up tomorrow
as the imaginary man you're addicted to
you're still going to have to work on yourself.
he will be the only one who has changed.

may as well get started now.

it's the only change you've got control over?
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Old 03-07-2011, 07:42 AM
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I know what you're talking about, all too well. I've been through it/am going through it right now. My AH quit drinking (for the most part) over 4 weeks ago, and at first he was acting exactly the same. Love me one minute, hate me the next. But it's slowly starting to ease up and for the first time in 10 years, he's actually acting and behaving like a normal person again. Of course, because of the past, I'm sitting here waiting for the other shoe to drop. I was devasted when my AH admitted to "having a couple of beers" after a week of sobriety. I felt like all his progress was going to go down the drain. But I came to grips with it, realized it wasn't the end of the world (thanks to people's advice on this website) and once I stopped obsessing about his sobriety, it's finally starting to get better. During the first few weeks, he was on edge, snapping at me, being very moody and distant. I thought he was in withdrawal, or maybe sneaking drinks behind my back. We talked about it a lot, and I'm sure he could see the fear and disappointment in my face. We went round and round like that for several days and it made me realize that monitoring him and giving him daily pep talks was just making things worse. I was an emotional wreck, he was resentful, etc.. Just like his drinking had been, his sobriety was still ruling our lives! Once I made the decision to STOP obsessing over HIS sobriety and/or possible relapse, both of us were able to relax and just start acting like a normal family again. It was not easy for me. I wanted to bring it up so bad and "help" him stay sober, but I know that is a mistake. The best advice I've received so far from this website, is to stop obsessing over it and leave him alone for awhile. So far, it has worked. He has not been drunk in over a month. I've been focusing on the kids instead, and we've all been a lot happier. When daddy comes home, instead of everyone being on edge, we are actually happy to see him now. This is a huge change from where we were at a few months ago. I haven't brought up his sobriety at all lately, but I plan on just telling him how proud I am at his progress, how much better our family life is now, and that this is the way our kids deserve to grow up. In a peaceful, loving household. Hopefully my positive comments will go a lot farther than negative ones. I've spent many years being negative, sad, and just recently, I actually had one foot out the door, thinking nothing would ever change. But then it did. No matter what happens, at least I know now that it's ok for me to detach and let go. It's his problem to fix, not mine. Of course, that's easier said than done, especially when you love this person, they are your life partner, and you have children together. Some people told me a few years ago to just leave him because we were better off without him. I chose to stick it out...somehow in my heart I always knew he wanted to do the right thing. I guess things would have been different if in my heart I thought he would never change. Maybe the lesson is to follow your gut instinct, it's usually right. Stay strong for your kids, don't think you are going crazy, you're not. Try not to obsess about him or his sobriety! You and the kids will be ok, and if your AH makes the right decisions, he will be ok too. Good luck to you!
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Old 03-07-2011, 08:02 AM
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I agree with so much of what has been said here in these responses.
1. That "sober" doesn't just mean not drinking on that particular day.
2. That abuse escalates when you detach.

My AH was far worse when he wasn't drinking. His nerves were raw without the anesthesia of alcohol. He was edgy and mean and he had to reassert his dominance so as not to have to deal with the children and me. He used fear and intimidation to avoid participating or even pleasantness.

3. That your children are living in chaos.
There is no getting around this. I fooled myself that our arguing went unnoticed. My chidlren were awake and worried about us. I do not condone divorce. I do condone children having the right to grow up free from the worries and fears that come from living in a warped and twisted setting.

The best evidence of whether you are becoming crazy as a result of living with him is in your own writings. I suggest you re-read your posts.

Good luck as you struggle with these issues. It is so hard.
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Old 03-07-2011, 08:15 AM
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I can't take the lying, the broken promises, the blaming, the projecting and when I try to detach he pulls out all the stops to get me to engage. And when I am nice he takes advantage of me. He loves me one minute and hates me the next. It is HELL living like this and at the end of the day it will be me who has to leave when I reach a "I can't take it anymore" point.

You sound like me inasmuchas there is a part of you that is soaking up the learning here and another part of you (probably a scared little girl that doesn't want to abandon or be abandoned) that has her hands over her ears and is screaming, "LALAALALLA!" so she doesn't have to listen.

My work has been to integrate the knowledge I am learning with my actions.

I KNOW I'm not happy. I know it isn't working. I know I don't trust him.

Am I honoring that? Am I listening to me? What am I worth? You have said life is he!!. Is that enough reason to protect yourself? If not, what is? How bad does it need to get?

You have said, "I can't take it" and yet you take it. Why? If you can't take it, why not listen to yourself and stop taking it?

Your kids are not in a Norman Rockwell painting life. They are in an alcoholic dad that is full of it life.
I believe you CAN listen to you. I believe you CAN take care of you and your kids, whatever way that looks.

Hugs, peace
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Old 03-07-2011, 08:19 AM
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Detaching will work but not all the time. The more you practice it the easier it is to do and the calmer you will be. I think it is HUGE that you are starting to see your own craziness. Now what are you going to do about it. For me...I had to move out and started going to Al ANon. My husband never stopped drinking but his "drunk" behavior started spilling into all kinds of our interactions. I now know that was his disease progressing. When he became emotionally abusive, I knew I had to go. Of course we did not have small children at home. I'm not sure I could have done it when the kids were younger. Wishing you strength.
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Old 03-07-2011, 08:25 AM
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I am afraid that I am making more of his behavior than it is and that maybe he's right and it really IS me (as he says). I don't feel convinced, deep down inside me that his behaviors are really the problem... I feel like all the things he tells me about my making mountains out of molehills, and not being patient enough etc... might be true.

I don't know what is right, what is wrong, what is up, what is down. My sense of being able to trust my own sense of what is and isn't okay is really, really messed up....

No matter how many places on these boards that I read about A behavior, I have this voice in me (that I hate) telling me that my H is different and that in his case it really is me causing the problems.

This is how I grew up and I know that I made a perfect match for my H to marry; someone who would believe from the start that the problems were all me...
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Old 03-07-2011, 08:32 AM
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No matter how many places on these boards that I read about A behavior, I have this voice in me (that I hate) telling me that my H is different and that in his case it really is me causing the problems.

That is called terminal uniqueness. It can destroy you. He is no different than any other abusive alcoholic. That is why so many here can identify with your story. It just gets worse, never better.
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Old 03-07-2011, 08:46 AM
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I couldn't do it, I had to get him out. I tried for 2 years and then threw him out, if I had to do it all over again, I'd chose my sanity and stability over that any day. but it took me a long time to get to that point. thank you for sharing this with me, I definitely feel your pain and hope you are okay. keep talking and reaching out, it helps and it works!!

Mavis
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Old 03-07-2011, 09:01 AM
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I 100% understand! I totally do. I am exactly like this.
I am so self confident and aware in other areas of my life and then I get into a relationship and I am doubting and confused and guilty!

I had to trust the voices on this board because I didn't trust myself and I didn't trust my AH. Some of my friends felt nervous about me listening to a bunch of strangers tell me what to do with my life and AH. I get that. When I first got here, I would read and ask myself, "is this advice, on the whole, life affirming, encouraging, gentle?" I find the answer is absolutely yes (on the whole). So I handed over some of my control and tried to listen. What is key, to me, and has me listen to the advice here, is that people are encouraging me to listen to my own heart. People are encouraging me to trust myself. To honor myself. To take care of myself. That feels right.

So, how do we know how to do that when we don't know how to do that? I have asked myself this, too.

When you are learning to cook, your teacher asks you to notice such subtle differences in taste. When you are learning to paint, your teacher asks you to notice such subtle differences in color. When you are learning yoga, your teacher asks you to notices such subtle differences in alignment. When you are learning to listen and care for yourself you are asked to notice subtle differences in how you feel.

In truth, these differences are not subtle at all to others. When you start a post "REALLY bad weekend" we are looking in on your life and seeing the red flags and alarm bells of a person that is not happy and needs to change to take care of themselves. But INSIDE that life, your life, you don't have the discernment at this time to see your own sadness and hurt, or perhaps to understand or FEEL that that MEANS a change is required. There is a disconnect there. It feels subtle to you.

That's okay. That's where we begin as learners.

At the start of this, I couldn't connect my pain with the fact I needed to change, and still, to some degree, don't. The connection was too subtle, too fuzzy.
* What I could see was I was searching on a forum like this and reaching out for help. There was a sign that I needed help.
* I couldn't read my own words and understand I needed help. I COULD read other people's posts (with stories like mine) and see THEY needed help. That helped me understand myself
* I could see relationships in my past where, after I left, I was relieved I had done so, and wondered what took me so long. It took me time to connect then and now.
* I could feel what I felt which was, and is, confusion, frustration, wishful/magical thinking, worry, obsessing, upset, sadness, and anger. It took time to realize that MEANT something.
* I learned, through this board, that those feelings WERE my sign. They were yelling at me to pay attention and do something, when all I heard in the "do something" part of me were whispers.

My intellectual understanding of what I need to do next to care for myself is taking over right now. Divorcing my husband still doesn't feel good or feel like it makes "sense", but I understand it is self-caring and I trust it will feel like it makes more sense later. The reason I trust in that is that MY life had become unmanageable and there are plenty of wise folks on this board that are growing a life of managability and joy. So I realize I must have a skewed understanding of "what makes sense" and I am listening and learning about what another understanding of "sense" might be. This new understanding has different behaviors attached than the ones I was doing. Doing those new behaviors feels foreign and awkward. I trust it feels that way because it is new and not because I am doing something "wrong" or "bad" or "cruel" or "judgemental" or "selfish". I trust that because of the joy and hope I can see from the other side.

I am afraid that I am making more of his behavior than it is and that maybe he's right and it really IS me (as he says). I don't feel convinced, deep down inside me that his behaviors are really the problem... I feel like all the things he tells me about my making mountains out of molehills, and not being patient enough etc... might be true.

I don't know what is right, what is wrong, what is up, what is down. My sense of being able to trust my own sense of what is and isn't okay is really, really messed up....

No matter how many places on these boards that I read about A behavior, I have this voice in me (that I hate) telling me that my H is different and that in his case it really is me causing the problems.


I have old posts with lists like this! Self doubt and confusion, and feeling unsure. And yet, you know. Your posts talk about how you are mistreated. Your posts talk about how unreasonable and manipulative your AH is. So you DO see that (in some part of you). AND, there is another part of you that doubts and is unsure and confused. I had to tell myself:

WHEN YOU FEEL DOUBTFUL AND CONFUSED LIKE THIS, YOU ARE BEING MISTREATED.

We don't want to see that. We don't want to hurt others. We don't want to be in a relationship like this. So we skew it and lose our ability to see it and feel confused, instead! We feel confused rather than what non-codies would do, which is feel this kind of pain and LEAVE. No thanks. Yuck. That's rediculous. And crap. And not worth my time. It is a short life. I am not going to waste it getting yanked around and lied to.

The confusion and self doubt IS our key, wanttobehealthy. All you have to do is listen and respect yourself.
You matter.

And you can do this.

You can grow and learn to listen to you and take action and find peace.

All my love,

findingpeace
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Old 03-07-2011, 09:48 AM
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I had my recovering AH here w me and our son for four months. He was not active in recovery, which just left him physically sober, dry drunk. Many feel dry drunk is worse than active drinking.

It is definitely a little more crazy making.

I kno the doubt. I had to get him out of here for my sons sake, for my sanity.
Please google "dry drunk Minnesota recovery" and read it.

First; your AH is not sober. He is drinking occasionally. That's active.
Second; being in relative sober states and still acting the same ways means dry drink, but that will not change either until he hits an uncomfortable place.

You are making it easy for him to keep playing you, see his kids, delude himself that he is there for you and yr kids. He simply isn't.
When you stop trying to convince him, move out or make him, the part of him that knows he is a mess, the one who has to trick and manipulate you, he knows so well that he is a mess, will just "get" the message.
You trying to explain, justify, etc, just literally puts off him feeling the direct reality of consequence for how he treats you.
And once you make a stand, expect the promises and small moves toward change to increase, but he will need you to stay truly staid and detached to really get it. Then he will be alone, and all the games and justifications will fall at his feet.

Then he may scramble to find family or other people who reflect to him his rightness. It's really his work, his path.
I suggest you get to alanon.
When you really know you dong want to be played like a guitar anymore, when the self loathing of your own denial and delusion finally hit you, you can tell him that YOU are unwilling to live like this, regardless of what he says or does. YOU are making a choice.

Then make it.
When I stopped giving ultimatums and realized he would trick me into the grave if I let him because he is an addict and that's what addicts do, I just asked if I wanted to live like that. The answer was no.
MY choice. MY recovery. MY action to protect my kid.

His is his. Hands off.
It ain't easy, but man... Your post sounds like years of my life.
My RAH is now living in an apartment without us to blame anything on.
He started going to at least a meeting a week for support, and that isn't much, but it's a meeting a week more than he did in his cushy position at my house.

And if he mucks up, he mucks up. No more Blane on me.
And if he does 6 months or a year and changes for real, stops scapegoating me and his job and the desk lamp, great, maybe we can go on a date.
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Old 03-07-2011, 10:47 AM
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Such wisdom on the board today. It is good to see people in all stages of their recovery. It gives us newbies something to strive for and hope that we can get there someday.
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