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Old 03-24-2011, 06:52 PM
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Got an idea from a woman at al anon last night and seeing what I did in black and white in front of me is both shocking and not shocking. What it definitely is is heart breaking and there's no doubt what I need to do...

I just started this list and spent maybe 5 min on it-- I could and will add to it for my own therapeutic purpose but here's what I have so far... It's just sad- really sad.

Reasons I love AH and want to stay married:
- the pizza he makes
- having someone to help pick up/drop off the girls
- our history together: there’s a lot of it and it seems like a waste or a shame to throw it all out and have to start over making new memories with someone else
- my engagement ring and wanting to wear it again (I took it off and gave it to him a few months ago and told him I needed to have him BE a husband to me before I could wear it again-- and I really don't think that will ever happen)
- fear of being alone forever, fear of never feeling the same for someone else that I've felt for him, fear of what it is like to be with someone else after having been married and wondering how you stop comparing them, fear that no one else would ever want me...
- sadness about the good memories I have, the experiences, the places and the desire to repeat/recreate those and make things be what they were back then (name of vacation place where we fell in love, first apt i had hen we first met, restaurants/pubs we spent time at talking and falling in love-- didn't know he was an alcoholic at all back then, east coast honeymoon city we went to, movies we saw on early dates, job we worked at where we met, and more that are too specific to list and would not keep me anonymous...)
- Financial stability
- Don’t want to give up on the dream of what I thought we’d have

Reasons I love AH but staying married isn’t healthy for me
- he doesn’t compliment me- even when I try to look good for him he pays me no attention. colleagues compliment me and tell me I am very attractive but I don't buy it bc the ONE person I want to find me attractive NEVER says so...
- I don’t feel love from him
- I don’t feel he likes me, let alone loves me
- Don’t believe he will ever be honest- completely honest- with me
- Can’t talk about anything anymore without an argument
- I feel like we are adversaries instead of a team
- Resent his family and how he enables them to come between us
- Frustration with characteristics that I should not judge but which he has and upset me: lack of initiative, evasiveness, unreliability, dishonesty, don’t feel he can take charge and protect me if needed.
- Don’t trust him not to hurt me emotionally
- Only time we “bond” is making pizza and during that time when I am exposing my vulnerabilties and sharing DEEPLY personal details and doing so, in hopes that it wll help him be comfortable letting down the walls he’s put around himself
- Anger about the number of things he’s lied about over all the years—things I have no clue about still and probably don’t want to know…
- Not sure I love him the way I once did.... I don't know anymore.
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Old 03-24-2011, 07:00 PM
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You left off domestic assault. That overrides everything in my book.
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Old 03-24-2011, 07:01 PM
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Wow- what does that tell you about me that that did not even occur to me... holy crap.
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Old 03-24-2011, 07:04 PM
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My list...

Why I love my AH:
- He gave me my children.

Why I'm leaving him:
-He laid a hand on me
-He takes no responsibility for his actions
-He makes no effort towards resolving his unacceptable behavior

He's completely avoiding me now it hopes that the whole thing just blows over... he's got another thing coming. I'm done trying to talk about anything... time for action.
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Old 03-24-2011, 07:07 PM
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My list, to be clear, shows me above all else that MY thinking is just as messed up as my AH's... I am trying to take stock of my stuff and putting these lists on paper is helping me do that... I was kind of trying to stick with the things that are keeping me stuck, my feelings, my wishes, my irrational hopes, my fears and not so much on the specifics of his actions... Maybe that's why I left the assault off? Who knows?
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Old 03-24-2011, 07:07 PM
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My reasons to stay married are mostly fear reasons(and some guilt, mostly on the PTSD front, like how dare I leave someone when it's not his fault). There is barely any financial support(the bills are always late, and he makes plenty of money, child support would fix that problem though) There's no love, no emotions except anger, disgust, hurt at this point. There's no real help with the kids, household, etc. I can't hold a normal conversation with him without it turning into something more.

Except, I do miss the old him, but when I get to really thinking about it, the old *non-alcoholic* him was already working on manipulating me, closing me off from everyone, etc.
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Old 03-24-2011, 07:15 PM
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Reasons for staying married:
*sometimes we have good times together
*I went through hell changing everything to be married, including my last name mid career
*he is good to my daughters
*he likes dogs
*he makes me laugh
*he can fix any piece of technology
*he knows how to lay perfect laminate floors
*he cares about me, even with his wacked out way of showing it

Cons of staying married
*he has serious fear issues, all related to me and the potential that I will screw him, harm him, trash his property, etc. Makes me wonder what kind of stupid TV shows he watched!
*doesn't know how to be a good man, much less a good husband
*looks for reasons to be cynical about everything
*makes fun of Al-Anon when he should be grateful I am there
*mocks my feelings
*makes crazy accusations with no basis in reality
*potential for relapse always hanging over my head
*no benefit at this point: companionship, financial, etc.

Hhhmmm...things to ponder over the next few weeks...
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Old 03-24-2011, 07:16 PM
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I think it's good to take stock of where you're at WTBH. It's all part of our awareness.

I think the thing for all of us is that we hit our bottom when we are good and ready. It has taken me 7 years to figure that out... and even though I feel I'm at my bottom, I still have moments of doubt and fear. How I handle them is by remembering the simple facts that I've stated above... I do my best not to muddy the water with all the "what he could be" or "used to be" stories/memories.

It's hard, no doubt. I think we all want to see and hope for the best in our alcoholic loved ones, but the danger is doing so is that we turn a blind eye to things that should not be ignored.
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Old 03-24-2011, 07:25 PM
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See, I think that's the thing, I believe I have hit my bottom, in regards to the codie in me, so that explains my list a bit more?
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Old 03-24-2011, 07:39 PM
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The difference in me this time around is that the fears and irrational hopes I've had I've had for a long time... In the past I'd convince myself that things might change, I'd talk to my AH about the past and the good times and try to recreate them and fool myself into believing I could make it all come back (and truth be told there really weren't ever long good periods-- there were events and moments but not solidly steady periods of good times).

This time around I recognize the thinking, the fears, the wishes and am accepting that I feel all of this but not letting it dictate what I do now and going forward. I can wish and hope things were different and still divorce him and move on and be okay with that... I think that's the important distinction for me this go around...
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Old 03-25-2011, 08:48 AM
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Let me give this a shot too.... May have to copy some of the other ones because they are exactly how I feel too.

Reasons for staying married:
* I love him
* Down under it all I do feel he really tries but his illness it just getting the best of him
* Being single and ripping apart the family just seems too scary, too overwhelming
* Maybe once I am healed via Alanon, reading and counseling I'll be able to handle the situation better.
* He is a good dad... some of the time.
* Financial security
*Don’t want to give up on the dream of what I thought we’d have
* our history together: there’s a lot of it and it seems like a waste or a shame to throw it all out and have to start over making new memories with someone else
* he cares about me, even with his wacked out way of showing it


Reasons it is not healthy to stay in this marriage:

* I feel emotionally ALONE
* I fear what the future holds. Alcoholism is progressive and most likely the problems we have are only going to get worse
* I worry about how the all of this will affect our kids
* tired of being a married single parent
* I am tired of the lies, walking on egg shells, bickering, arguments, etc
* Don't trust him, even when he is nice I don't believe it is genuine, it is only part of the dance/ the game.
* I don’t feel he likes me, let alone loves me
* I deserve better! I want better!
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Old 03-25-2011, 09:34 AM
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This is hard.

REMAIN with HIM
*He is truly hilarious, and finds humor in everything. Even when he is beat down. His wit is outrageously contagious, to the point of derailing my very real anger at key points.
* I have never been more physically attracted to a man.
* He is charming and when not trying to manipulate can make me feel like I am the only person alive.
* He says he wants to be a good father, and he is working hard to provide a future for our son, even if I wont benefit now, financially.
*I am in awe of his creative talent and ease, even though he has never been able to do anything with it.
*We have an intense sexual connection, and I fear never finding that again, and I abhor the thought of dating, and having to test the waters to find a good match again.
*We laughed a lot, at times.
*I feel safer in a primitive way when there is a man in the house.
*He knows me, acknowledges that I am smart.
* He finds me attractive, even tho I am ten years his senior.

NOT good for ME
*MOst of the good stuff listed above is a manipulation, or cannot be maintained for any significant amount of time.
*I feel nauseous when the phone rings his ringtone.
*he is paranoid, and exhibits predatory and disordered thinking.
*He is emotionally neglectful of our child.
*He blames and scapegoats me for really everything
*His family is a clan of highly narcissistic people, who may be harmful to my childs development in reinforced, large doses.
* he has physically bullied and attacked me i anger while intoxicated.
*The infidelities of the past are appearing to be an insurmountable obstacle for me to overcome, which kind of make all that happy sex energy go sour.
* Being with him requires that I play along in sick dynamics that I had partially healed and left behind prior to getting involved with him.
* he makes me doubt my competency, is competitive instead of supportive,
* he is frighteningly jealous and controlling since sober.
* He denies the negative aspects of his behavior and chooses, instead to project them onto me, which is just too much bulls*it to swinm through anymore. and my arms are freaking tired.
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Old 03-25-2011, 09:48 AM
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This is a great idea. I think I'll take my time with doing a list this weekend.
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Old 03-25-2011, 11:34 AM
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Just tossing another perspective into the fray here....

it was mentioned that 'throwing away' a past history and life together...

there's no such thing.

the past is just that - PAST.
it's not here.
it never will be here again.

now, he can do things
that makes those 'great' memories of the 'past'
awful to look back on
and WE can do things
that turn what were actually horrible events
into 'fond' memories.

both are illusion.

but the past if one thing that no one can take away from us.

ever.

And finally -
just because a handful of good events
accumulated in a decade or so of miserable
or terrified
years
doesn't mean we owe anyone the rest of our lives in misery

to pay for it.

if it's over
it's paid for.

no balance due.

taking stock is a powerful thing
and I don't know if we can ever get enough
but taking stock
and not lifting the illusion
that surrounds the event
especially if it's still occurring

is not productive.

just another opinion from over here outside the box.
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Old 03-25-2011, 12:03 PM
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Just to be clear-- I made my list to continue to remind me of why my decision to leave was right, even though it hurts and is hard...

I totally agree with the post above mine here that it's not super productive to make a list and try to continue to live the illusion... BUT, I also think that making the list is step 1 for some people and for me a few yrs ago maybe all I wouldve been ready to do was make a list and start to become aware...

Awareness is where it starts and it takes everyone a different amt of time to then act. It took me a long time and I had to do it my way on my own... So, I think no matter what the purpose of making a list it is at the very least better than lying to ourselves...
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Old 03-25-2011, 12:05 PM
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I really ought to have included this one... this would be much easier (joking!) if he weren't so handsome...

* I have never been more physically attracted to a man.
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Old 03-25-2011, 12:09 PM
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My XAH was handsome when I met him.
A) his looks really changed as he got bloated and sick from drinking too much
b) I grew to HATE his looks because they were associated with him abusing me in every possible way.

Look fade. Real character doesn't.
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Old 03-25-2011, 12:43 PM
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The physical him has changed so much, he's bloated and overweight, only shaves when he has too for drill(i hate facial hair) in the full thralls of the alcohol addiction, that he disgusts me. I truly have no physical feelings for him at all anymore.
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Old 03-25-2011, 01:22 PM
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My AH was so handsome when I met him too. This sums it up perfectly for me...

Look fade. Real character doesn't.
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