Is anyone here trying to hang on?

Old 03-18-2011, 01:14 PM
  # 21 (permalink)  
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wow, how I wish I would have had this site at my fingertips 10 years ago. These posts are all so true. I had the unfortunate experience of having to find out for myself. My only reward.....2 wonderful daughters that I wouldn't trade for the world! XXXX, please read and re-read these.......take this all to heart! Print it and keep it with you to read whenever you are questioning yourself-because you will if you stay. You will come to the point where your life is unmanageable and you are questioning yourself constantly. It is part of the chaos of alcoholsim. I was in your position 10 years ago. His family was concerned, now I know why. I wish someone would have taken the time to speak these words to me then. Whatever your path just remember that only YOU can make you happy and no matter how hard you try, you will never be able to "cure" him.
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Old 03-18-2011, 01:16 PM
  # 22 (permalink)  
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oh and one thing I forgot to mention........I left. It was hard, but I did. I am finally starting to figure out who I am again. I was a mere shadow of myself for probably the last 5 or 6 years.
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Old 03-18-2011, 02:51 PM
  # 23 (permalink)  
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How can I give advice, knowing I've made all the wrong choices? Well, that probably qualifies me. Lol. I'm asking others for help in my own thread, and I saw yours.

Don't make this choice for you. Make it for the you that you're going to want to be in five years when his drinking is so much worse. Or make it for the kids you two will have together who will be affected by having an alcoholic father.

I didn't even know my husband had a drinking problem when I married him, and we'd been dating for ten years. The last few years before we married, we lived together. He either hid it really well, or he suddenly became an alcoholic from almost the moment we got married. Maybe I was too naive or young to notice the signs.

You have none of these disadvantages. You see the signs. You are already worried, already heartbroken.

You will love someone else. Do it for the older you, maybe the you with children, who will find it so much harder to leave a man that will have become much worse.

Above all, I can tell you, that my forum name is "Who Was I Then" because I have become someone not so strong, not so vibrant, not so trusting, not so loving, not so whole".

Last edited by WhoWasIThen; 03-18-2011 at 02:53 PM. Reason: addition
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Old 03-18-2011, 02:52 PM
  # 24 (permalink)  
same planet...different world
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wow (((buffalo))) read that post again
and go back and read some of the first ones at SR!!!

omg how far we come!


I read the first post
and I read what has been aid here

these people are speaking from personal experience.

Many many people come here
asking for help and support
but immediately try and qualify
what they want to be told
and how they want to be told it.

I sense that in that post
you already know
that something is very very wrong
and you sense
that you're about to make a big mistake

maybe you think it's your only chance?

I urge you to think about at the very least postponing the date.

Questions this important coming up
are not 'cold feet'
they're 'red flags'.

gives you and he both time
to get things on some kind of course
other than the obvious one it's on now.
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Old 03-18-2011, 02:57 PM
  # 25 (permalink)  
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Gosh. I've posted in here already and coming back and reading other responses, I'm seeing so much good stuff. I don't want to play this game but if only I had postponed my marriage due to questionable alcoholic issues, I'm betting my current AW would have self destroyed and revealed her "true" demons. I wouldn't have had to do it. She would do all the heavy lifting for me.

Again. That's not the case with me now so please do read these responses. Sleep on it. Come back and read them again.

I think you're very wise for coming here this early in the game.
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Old 03-18-2011, 05:04 PM
  # 26 (permalink)  
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Smallsteps and Cyranoak are right.

Alanon would help you tremendously if you are open to it.

You are clearly not ready to walk away. You have begun to question yourself already. Your game has already begun.

You may not be married yet, but you're already in full swing with an A. There are plenty of women on here with boyfriends who are A's. It is no easier for them than for those of us who screwed up and married them.

I have no children with my A. Seems like a divorce would be quite easy. He is not going to have that at this point. When I break it off for good, it will be ugly.

The deeper you go in the rabbit hole, the harder it is to extract yourself from it. That is common sense and you already know it.

So run, don't walk to alanon, and watch in amazement at the change in you!!
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Old 03-18-2011, 05:30 PM
  # 27 (permalink)  
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Oh girl! I too married and A. I knew he drank too much, I knew I didn't like.... I did it anyway. I believed the "it's gonna change we when are married".... Guess what it didn't! I called off the wedding the days the invitations went out. I cancelled everything. And then 2 weeks later went thru with it. He was gonna change, one AA mtg, etc. I wanted to be married so bad.... Now 8 mths into it, guess what? He is still an alcoholic. I made him move out 3 weeks ago. I am giving it 90 days to see change. If I could do it over again, I would not have married him. I love him, I do not love his alcoholism. I am getting better though. Educate yourself! I read all the time. Read Codependecy No More, go to some Al-Anon meetings. I wish I would have. I thought mine would be different, I thought I could change mine.... Realizing now the only one I can change is me. Please just educate yourself. Best of luck
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Old 03-18-2011, 05:44 PM
  # 28 (permalink)  
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Putting drinking aside, it is always a red flag if someone enters into a marriage with a feeling of forboding or confusion.

That in itself is why I would tell a friend of mine who was in the situation you are in to put the marriage plan on hold until you feel like you have a clearer picture about what you are taking on.

The problems we have with spouses before we marry them become exponentially worse after the marriage. Something to think about.
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Old 03-18-2011, 05:59 PM
  # 29 (permalink)  
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All I can say is, knowing what I know now I would not marry my husband. I love him still, but this alcoholism is horrible. In a sense I am glad I married him because we have two amazing children, but truly I would not wish this insanity on anyone. It will only get worse if he doesn't go through recovery.
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Old 03-18-2011, 06:43 PM
  # 30 (permalink)  
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I've been around AA and Al-Anon for 31 years (since first husband got sober before we got married). I've yet to hear a single alcoholic or spouse of an alcoholic say that their drinking problem got better after they got married.
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Old 03-18-2011, 08:07 PM
  # 31 (permalink)  
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I had tried to hang on. We were together 4.5 years total. In January of 2010 I made a deal with myself - I was giving myself a one year deal. By January of the next year if things hadn't gotten better, I would make the decision to move on. I only made it to mid-October. I look back and feel that I wasted a lot of time that I could have been with someone better for me.
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Old 03-18-2011, 08:51 PM
  # 32 (permalink)  
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My EXH wasn't an alcoholic when I married him. (He'd never even had a drink when we started dating.) He was my best friend, my high school sweetheart. Someone I thought I knew better than myself.

I hung on for 10 years. I knew there were problems, I sought marriage counseling, tried lots of different things.

But I didn't find this place until about year 9. I found al-anon around year 6. It helped me "hang on" as it were.

I needed to know I'd done everything within my power. I know that now.
I don't know if I would have listened to myself when I was in the throes of planning a wedding, though. (Even though he wasn't drinking heavily then) I never would have believed how awful it would get.

I don't know the answer for you.
I wouldn't put myself through that hell again, but then again, I didn't know how bad it was going to be.

I am finally free. It only cost me 10 years of my life and over $110,000. More if you count his booze... that's just the alimony and the lawyer's fees.

Hugs and good luck.
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Old 03-19-2011, 04:51 AM
  # 33 (permalink)  
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Ya know, when I married the first husband, I remembered from an Ann Landers (or Dear Abby or something) column that you shouldn't consider marrying an alcoholic until he's been sober for at least a year. I followed that advice the first time--my first husband was sober a year and actively involved in AA when we got married. He never picked up a drink again.

With husband number two I didn't follow that advice. He had almost died of liver failure, and had had at least a couple of slips when we got married. At best, he had only been sober a few months (though I think, in retrospect, he was drinking when we got married--I was trying to ignore the signs, wanting to be hopeful). Within a couple of months of the marriage he was back to drinking full-time (having lost his job). I only remained living with him for about eight or nine months, when I decided I had made a terrible mistake and couldn't go through all that again.

There are no guarantees in life, but postponing the wedding until he's been sober for at least a year isn't a bad rule of thumb.
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Old 03-19-2011, 06:43 AM
  # 34 (permalink)  
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Barb Dwyer,

I did go back and read my first several posts here at SR.
That was 4 years ago.

I cried.
How far we come indeed.
I still have a long way to go...sigh

Thanks, barb!
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Old 03-19-2011, 09:59 PM
  # 35 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by XXXXXXXXXX View Post
Mostly a lurker here, but I am so greatful to have found this group, and really appreciate everything I have read. It's nice to not feel so alone.

I haven't posted because most of the posts I have read are from people who are in a place that I haven't made it to, and right now, don't want to be.

I am engaged to be married in April. This should be such a happy time in my life, but there is a black cloud overhead. I know that if we don't make it, it will be be because of his drinking.

A few weeks ago, we had a very bad weekend, and I told him I would leave if he didn't do something. He went to a clinic and was prescribed Campral. He takes it when I give it to him. I know he isn't really ready or willing to give this up. I also know that he is drinking again, not the 6-12 nightly that he was having, but one or two a couple of times a week. He was hiding and lying about it, but I said last night that the hiding and lying were worse than anything else.

I am so afraid that soon I will hear, as I heard before, that he is able and willing to "drink responsibily" and for awhile he will. After a year together, along with a DWI, nights where I slept in the driveway in my car, and weeks where I dreaded the weekend because I knew what was coming, I know posting this might get me flogged with questions of "Why would I want to stay? Why would I think going through with the wedding would be a good idea".

Is anyone there hanging on, trying to be supportive, trying to have better days, and just trying to enjoy the good times? I know I can't change him, I know I didn't cause this. But I really do love him too much to leave?
I'm relatively new here too. This place is a lifesaver...sanity saver and a good reality check.

I have been w/ my RAH for almost 19 yrs. Married for 14 yrs in Aug. We had a very rocky relationship from the beginning, but I was young, him even younger...and I had a baby. I wanted to give my son a father that would love I was willing to overlook some things I shouldn't have. I didn't know he was an alcoholic but suspected what was to come. Even when we lived apart he was the steady father force in my son's life. I will always be thankful for that. I to this day don't know if that was a good or bad thing for him. My son is almost 19. He's torn between wanting to be here to help me w/ his little brothers and moving on w/ his own life. He is 18!!! These are not decisions that he should be considering.
He has lost all respect for me.
It's because I have been unable to just say enough is enough and move on.
When I cry he tells me "how much longer are you going to let him treat you this way"..
I think he is more damaged by the relationship than he realizes and that is my number one regret.
It is the reason I cannot get on w/ my own recovery from being a codependent....I am not able to forgive myself for allowing this in my children's lives....for bringing children into this situation...and for not getting them out before now. I feel like I put my RAH before my children. I felt he needed me. I spent more time and energy into raising my RAH than my children.
My son recently told me that while he knows I did what I had to and that he loves me...he always felt like he was an 'inconvienence'.
It broke my heart.
He was the reason I brought this man into our lives. I thought I was doing the right thing.
Then when I saw things for what they were I couldn't take the only father he'd ever known away.
And now he feels he needs to stay here and help protect his brothers from the same kind of childhood he had.
Which is solely my fault. I stayed.
It's hard to forgive yourself for that.
I don't know if I can.
Now that my A is in recovery. We are having problems; but I'm trying to be receptive to what could happen if we work hard to get to a good place yet..I don't think I can forgive him either.
I can't tell you what to do but I hope to God that someone you love and trust does.
This is NOT the life you want.
I'm telling you right now that you need to leave.
You need to do this for YOU.
His addiction is HIS problem. He doesn't want help. He doesn't want you to have a life of your own...he is too caught up in his alcoholism. That is how this disease works. It will steal your future from you.
I have to tell you to keep reading....
read pages and pages of posts...keep reading til your eyes hurt.
You won't like what you read.
But I promise you that if you marry this man you will regret it. Your going to look back and wish you had listened to us.
We know the pain your facing...even in is a hard road. There are no guarantees it will "stick". There is not an easy fix on this disease..recovery is a lifetime of difficulty. It's never over...
there isnt' a person here who would wish this on their worst enemy...
there is no reason you have to stay....but there is a reason you can't yet decide to have to find out what it is and fix YOU so your next relationship isn't a replica of this one.
Good luck...and please think hard about this your future is in the balance.
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Old 03-19-2011, 10:54 PM
  # 36 (permalink)  
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Even if someone had told me the truth about what life would be like with my XABF just one year in, I don't know that I would have believed them - and I don't know what I would have done. Probably gone right ahead.

Barb makes a great point - lots of folks post on here about how much pain they're in and then make it very clear what they do and don't want to hear in terms of feedback.

I rarely reply to those threads - because codependency is exactly like alcoholism. We beg and plead with our As to just stop. They don't. It might take a spell in jail, losing a job, losing liver function, losing a marriage or ending up on the streets before they hit bottom. They might never hit bottom - but nobody can make them address their addiction until they reach their own moment of truth.

So if it helps - at this point, you're in exactly the same place as your A. He is in denial about his addiction (just one, I can handle it, etc. etc.) But if you're already sleeping in a car and you're about to make a legal commitment despite all your misgivings - aren't you addicted, too? Addicted to the good times? Addicted to hoping for a positive outcome? Just plain old addicted to him?

Addiction is being unable to give up or stay away from something that has profound negative consequences on your life. Week after week people come on this section of Sober Recovery because they are unable to give up or stay away from people who are having profound negative consequences on their lives. We focus, focus, focus on how awful their addiction is and how it hurts us.

Recovery starts when you can take a clear eyed look at the fact you won't even entertain letting go of someone who is causing you enormous pain. It is absolutely ok to love him. I still loved my ex long after the relationship ended. But I finally got to a place where that wasn't what I wanted for my life and I'm relieved it's over.

I'm not going to try to convince you of anything, or tell you to leave him, or tell you to postpone the wedding. Because just like your fiancee, you need to reach your own bottom. If it's not sleeping in a car so he doesn't drive, I don't know what it's going to be - but you'll know when you get there - that's for sure. I did.

One final thought - if you're planning on having kids with this man please take the word of this adult child of an alcoholic: you will be doing your kids a grave disservice. I loved my alcoholic parent with all my heart. But some of what I grew up with has been absolutely debilitating. I have scars that I'm still coming to terms with and that have profoundly affected the choices I've made. I can't change any of it but the only thing I know for sure is that it's not something i would ever, ever, ever be willing to put a child of mine through. Not if I had gone in with my eyes wide open enough to be posting on a support group about my partner's addiction this close to the beginning.

Take what you like and leave the rest.

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Old 03-19-2011, 11:22 PM
  # 37 (permalink)  
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I know this might sound insensitive:

"Men are like buses; another one will be along in 15 minutes."

/What a royal PITA your fiance sounds like.
//what does he love more? booze or you?
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Old 03-20-2011, 12:27 AM
  # 38 (permalink)  
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You are doing the RIGHT thing by reading this forum and seeing early on that there is a potential (and likelihood) of trouble ahead with him as your spouse in the state he is in.

As a gf of someone who IS in recovery I wouldn't consider marrying him until he had several years of sobriety, being responsible, being able to participate emotionally in a relationship, etc. etc. I worked too hard to build my life to have somoene crash into it and shatter it to pieces or give me heartache and worries.

Maybe because I have the hindsight of having been married (to a non-drinker) that I know the challenges that come with marriage, add on drinking and I can't imagine how hard it would be.

I have so much empathy for those here who do 'hang on' or did for some time. Particularly when children are involved. As much as I love the bf and want him to be something lasting, reading the stories here have made me accept the reality of an alcoholic who is not in recovery.

Knowledge is power and gives you what you need to decide for yourself if you are making the right choice. Trust your gut.
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Old 03-20-2011, 08:43 AM
  # 39 (permalink)  
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This is a very good thread. Stilllearning pretty much said it for me. Even if someone had told me what life would be like I would not have thought it was possible. Three months into our marriage people that I had not seen in a while were telling me how happy they were for me and I thought, "If you only know how miserable I am." And yet I hung on for over six years.

Please think long and hard before you marry this man. If you think there are problems now you most likely have only seen the tip of the iceberg.
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Old 03-20-2011, 08:54 AM
  # 40 (permalink)  
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that's one beautiful post from SL.
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