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Old 04-19-2011, 01:39 PM
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How did I get here?

The one thing that keeps going round and round in my head is "how did I get here to this (unhappy) place in my life?" I know the answer is being involved with an AH( and being a codie) , but I am still in shock that my marriage is so flipping crappy. I am a smart person, I am not a doormat, I do not lie for my AH, I am supportive, loving, kind and feel like I did my best. BUT my best just wasn't good enough. I can sit here all I want and reason with myself that it didn't matter what I did or didn't do that most our issues were/are out of my control. I am not perfect and I know I have made mistakes (and alanon is helping to see that even more), but I feel like I am walking around in someone else's life (part of the fog that comes with this type of relationship). This is NOT what my life was to be. I have known my AH since we were young (16 and 17), married young (22 and 23) and we have 3 amazing kids. Alcoholism is slowly draining what should have been a fantastic family and life away. It happened so slow and AH was so good at hiding, manipulating, trying to be a RAH (I think), getting emotionally further and further from me but it finally came up and bit me hard. Reflecting back how did I not see how sick he was? How sick I became? Hard core denial I guess with a mix of not really understanding what alcohol does to the brain long term.

Now as I sit here dumbfounded at what my marriage actually is I can't help but feel alone and lost. Alanon and therapy is helping me to focus on me, but now that I actually get how destructive alcoholism is in my marriage I can't help but feel overwhelmed by it all. What is the next 1-10 years of my life going to be like? In some odd way I almost wish he pulled some of the horrible crap I have read on this board. Not that leaving would ever be easy, but it sure would make the actual decision easy. I am not abused, he does not drink until he passes out, he is good with our kids (for the most part), has a good steady job, but yet because of his illness he can not be a loving, rational, and supportive husband. He "quacks" like the rest of the A's on here, tries to pick arguments with me, is self-centered, lies and has had me walking on eggs shells for way too long. What is going to happen as his illness progresses?

This just sucks! Looking forward to seeing things clearer and finding some peace via alanon. I am finding it difficult to have something I want ( a healthy marriage) not be within my reach.

Thanks for letting me vent a bit.
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Old 04-19-2011, 01:45 PM
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I'd like to add how grateful I am that all of you are here and willing to share your stories. I am not very supportive to others the way I would like to be mostly because I know I have a long way to go before I will I can give healthy advise to others. When I feel so emotionally messed up how can I possibly be of help to someone else? SO I do read a lot and do post where I feel like I have something to offer. Just know I wish the best for each of you..
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Old 04-19-2011, 01:47 PM
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I feel like I keep spouting the same rhetoric, but in the end, it's truly what I believe. IMO, you are where you are in your life because you had to travel that path in order to learn about yourself. I strongly believe that everything happens for a reason, and as an outsider looking in, I see that you are slowly coming to some important realizations. These couldn't have happened without the last X years of your marriage to an alcoholic. Yes, they were (are) painful, but would you have learned otherwise?

I'm sorry things are so tumultuous right now. It WILL get better though.
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Old 04-19-2011, 02:01 PM
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nodaybut2day...thank you. Part of me gets that. Part of me gets all of it (the whole A drama world). While understanding is making it somewhat easier, it also is waking me up to what MY LIFE really is and how much I do not want to be where I am. I am a doer, a fixer and even if I fix me it may not change my marriage one bit and that reality is a hard one to take.
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Old 04-19-2011, 02:05 PM
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I agree with NoDay... this is YOUR path... you are right where you are suppose to be, right here, and right now. All things for a reason, though you may not know it now.

It hurts SOOO bad when I take off my cloak of denial. I step out into reality and it's rough, and can be overwhelming and depressing. I started Al-anon 6 years ago - a newylwed, with no children - I stepped out of denial briefly... but I quickly slipped back into the old habits/comfort zone. Now here I am, 6 years later and I've brought two children into this. I feel bad about that sometimes, but I don't dwell in it... because at least I have them... and they are motivating me to do what I couldn't do years ago. And that's completely step out of denial and live in reality.

Be patient and kind with yourself... you're here, and that in and of itself is success, right? You're making progress toward that life you want. One day at a time Alone!
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Old 04-19-2011, 02:11 PM
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Alone22,

so sorry to hear what you are going through. i think all of us at some point consciously or subconsciously know that this is not where we want to be. sometimes it takes a long time to open our eyes and see that we are in a middle of a chaos, all alone, neither knowing how we got there or what to do to fix it. and that's ok. it is not a good feeling, but it is necessary in order to start making changes.

you are on the right path. the path is cloudy and foggy, but at least you do see some of the problems with the current situation. i have been thinking the same thoughts more times than i care to remember. my husband's drug use has left me going in circles so many times. i heard someone refer to it as a dance of addiction. and we all dance, until we decide that we are too tired or too unwilling to continue this numbing dance.

similar to your husband, mine is also a picture of perfection. nice and loving father to our kids, a wonderful husband, taking care of all the bills, understanding, and so on. all of this, of course, provided no one rocks his boat and he gets to enjoy his drugs on the side.

at least at this point, you seem to realize that there is a problem and that is a very important first step. only you can change your life if you want to. i know it sounds cliche, but it really is true. i waited on my husband to realize that there is a problem, that this kind of life is not normal, etc., etc. sad to say, but even now that kids and i are gone (for about 1 month) he still doesn't see it. whether he ever will or not, i don't know. i hope for the best and the time will tell.

i wanted you to know that you are feeling what many of us also feel and it is completely normal for anyone in a relationship w/ an addict.

i know you are strong and have what it takes to make the right choices for yourself. i keep you and your family in my prayers. keep posting and venting, that's what we're here for.

hugs and prayers. Stay strong!
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Old 04-19-2011, 02:33 PM
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It must be the full moon or an unusually cold spring but I have been in the same funk for a few days. I often say the exact same thing.
How did I get to this point" "Why did I not see this coming?" "Could I have done anything about it?"
I am trying to focus on the blessings and the lessons I have learned so far. There are many. I keep thinking I just need to make up my mind to be happy.
Today I think I have said every slogan I can think of and prayed several times. I know this feeling wont last but for today it definitely feels like "What is the point?"
My kids are grown so the responsibility of caring for them is not there.
I have never left a bad movie in the middle. Too curious to see how it ends. But for today I don't like this movie one bit and I can't imagine a happy ending.
I am going to a meeting tonight and have spent most of the day on the board.
Please remember-We are not alone.
Hugs from me to you.
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Old 04-19-2011, 02:38 PM
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Originally Posted by Alone22 View Post
What is the next 1-10 years of my life going to be like? In some odd way I almost wish he pulled some of the horrible crap I have read on this board. Not that leaving would ever be easy, but it sure would make the actual decision easy.
Not necessarily. I don't know if I can speak for others, but as for me, AH crossed so many landmark offenses and I still put up with it, finding all kinds of excuses as to why I should stay. I may be still doing that. Ten years of your life goes by fast, so you're right to be wary.

Think about what you are going to ACCEPT and what you are going to CHANGE. Do it today.
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Old 04-19-2011, 02:50 PM
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Originally Posted by jamaicamecrazy View Post
It must be the full moon or an unusually cold spring but I have been in the same funk for a few days. I often say the exact same thing. How did I get to this point" "Why did I not see this coming?" "Could I have done anything about it?"
I think we all go through this many times over - its similar to SailorJohn's "erasing old tapes" thread.

Today - I am at the place of "Damn I knew that was coming so why am I so upset about it" stage?

Because reality is hard to accept. That's all. It sucks.

But you know what? I have learned a lot throughout this process. I've learned to pay attention to life every day. I've learned to be grateful for the little things. I've learned to believe in a Higher Power, and become open-minded enough to allow myself to accept his guidance. I've met a lot of really neat people who otherwise I would have never spoken with. I've learned there is strength in numbers, and I do not have to suffer alone anymore. I've learned what love DOESN'T look like to me. I've learned to take care of myself.

Stay strong - it will get better.
~T
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Old 04-19-2011, 04:01 PM
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Thanks to each of you! I guess I was having a little mini pity party over here (anniversary of my mom's death was yesterday...always brings me down) . I am done with life being unfair...it has been unfair a lot of my life. A thumbnail of "unfair" for me... Bio dad was a jerk, didn't have much to do with me, he took his life a few years ago but had to slap me one last time by leaving me a $100. His whole side of the family turned their back on me (but they were/are crazy so honestly it was a blessing). Step dad is an A, high functioning A, but caused a lot of drama in the house while growing up (cheated, lied, abused, etc). My mom (who I was VERY close with) died at 47 of breast cancer 3 days after my first child was born. While I am blessed to have 3 kids I went through YEARS of infertility treatments and several miscarriages to get them here ( infertility linked to AH and his drinking...killed off his sperm big time... he lied about the amount he was drinking and let me go through costly, emotionally difficult, painful, risky treatments while he hid his drinking habits). While I know there are many out there that have had a lot harder life than I, I am just so done with the crisis after crisis in my life.

While I believe in a HP and I understand that this is my path in life I can't help but think WTF, can my path just get a little easier now, please!? Dear Lord I think I deserve a break and some peace and harmony.

Trying hard to focus on the positives in life (my kids, my friends) and learning to ride the wave of "unfair" with a little more grace. , but honestly at this point I'd rather just slap the unfair than to be more graceful.
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Old 04-19-2011, 05:41 PM
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Originally Posted by Alone22 View Post
While I know there are many out there that have had a lot harder life than I, I am just so done with the crisis after crisis in my life.
Delete this statement from your mind RIGHT NOW. It doesn't matter what other people are or aren't going through... what matters is it's YOUR life and your entitled to want certain things for you!!

My AH has been playing the same tape over and over and over again... "But so and so drinks so much more than me and so and so cheats on his wife... and so and so hits his wife..." I sit in shock and think, "Does he really think I should be looking at all of these other sick situation and be grateful I don't have it that bad?

That's not a healthy way to live, at all. Sure we should have an attitude of gratitude but by no means does that equate to telling ourselve... "Well, at least he doesn't hit me, or cheat on me." 'Cuz one day, you may wake up and find yourself smack dab in the middle of either of those.

It happened to me.
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Old 04-19-2011, 07:01 PM
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Thanks Gettingby... I needed to hear that. Unhappy is unhappy and wanting better for me no matter how good or bad I have it compared to others is what is important. I see how twisted our thoughts get once we are involved with an A. We put up with stuff we never thought we would have. We excuse behavior, keep trying to make things better, keep pushing and searching for normality in our relationship. Then we get to the point where we are done smacking our head into a brick wall. I just got to the point I was so tired and mentally frazzled I knew something had to change.
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Old 04-19-2011, 11:29 PM
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similar to your husband, mine is also a picture of perfection. nice and loving father to our kids, a wonderful husband, taking care of all the bills, understanding, and so on. all of this, of course, provided no one rocks his boat and he gets to enjoy his drugs on the side.

That's it.
I wasn't willing to rock the boat for ME...
but when I got pregnant, that little being came into my life and gifted me with seeing that I WAS willing to rock the boat for her/him.
So I did some boat rocking and the ship sank.
Well, boats need to be designed to rock.
If they sink, they weren't meant for sea.

Hugs,
p
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Old 04-20-2011, 12:23 AM
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Hiya Alone, Oh Oh I didn't know I shouldn't post any advice unless I'm strong and healthy lol. I post more when I'm feeling down, because I need to follow my own advice and it makes me feel better.

I totally feel for you and I have been asking myself too, when will my life get better, what did I do to deserve this, I have nothing to look forward to, life just hasn't turned out like I expected, and I have a pretty decent life.

You deserve to be treated with respect. While you say he may not have done things like some of the other posts you read, you also say that he is not supportive or loving. You do not deserve to be in a relationship without love and support. IMO love and support are one of the most important things in a marriage, definitely more important than a steady job. Of course you feel alone you are not being loved. Everyone deserves love. Something does need to change and you definitely can't continue another 10 years without his love. But you can't change him, he has to make that change. I really hope things get better for you and you make the right decisions to turn your life around.

<3 Peace
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Old 04-20-2011, 07:22 AM
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Alone...if you're a fixer and a doer, like moi - the Queen of Saving the World, then give yourself the daily task of working on YOU. For me, when things were very rocky emotionally, I "prescribed" myself a daily regiment and worked on sticking to it.

1) Serenity prayer, as many times as needed.
2) Check myself over for HALT (Hungry, Angry, Lonely, Tired) and made certain that I ate/slept well, connected with friends/family/SR regularly and JOURNALED a lot)
3) Daily exercise, whether it be a 20 minute walk, 10 sun salutations, running up some stairs...*anything* to get my body moving and some endorphins flowing.

You can make yourself a similar list based on personal preferences and attack it daily. I find that having something like this to attend to, especially when it directly benefits me (and indirectly benefits those around me), helps lift my spirits and gives me a sense of purpose.

Since you've had children, you can probably relate to this analogy: where you are now is very similar to being in the early stage of labor, dealing with some contractions and fatigue, but about to embark on a very exciting/scary journey. Like birth, this process involves pain which is necessary to move you forward. And like in labor, you can drug yourself silly and try to mask the pain, but in the end, you still have some measure of discomfort to go through before you're left holding a wonderful miracle.

Whenever things got really confusing and downright *painful* for me, I would come to SR, simply asking for some hugs, much like I would rely on my doula to help me focus on the end goal of my labor rather than the contractions I was feeling.

You can do this. We'll be here for you. Keep posting!
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Old 04-20-2011, 09:07 AM
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Thank you. You have voiced what I have been feeling and repeating at the fringes of my conscious thoughts. It has been a battle the last few days for me to not sink back into complacency. AH also has ramped up his agenda of lulling me back to my 'old' self. He has been acting as if nothing has changed even though our relationship dynamics drastically changed some time ago. His new thing is to lovingly and with a smile say, "Baby you belong to me. I love you." I look at him like he's crazy, and he doesn't call me on it. I just can't get this business up and going fast enough! But HP is lining things up nicely, I just have to hold on and move forward. Some days it feels like I'm dragging a dead carcass around through mental fog, or like one of those dreams when you want to run but your legs are soooo heavy.

My husband hovered around perfection for years, until he snapped. When everything started coming out, the veil of perfection was drawn back. I had been kidding myself. It had escalated slowly. The frog in heating water phenomena. The kids ended up being the ones that were victim of a lot of his secret doings. They didn't tell me because young kids see mom and dad as one unit. I still look back and my mind doesn't scream abuse, but a little voice says it was subtle but it did it's job. Kind of like the AH who looks at skid-row drunks and says, "Look at them. I'm not an alcoholic!"

We can do this girl! We really can... A goal is a dream with a deadline.

Reading SR is the only thing most of the time that is keeping me focused. Funny how my mind wants to so readily draw the curtain again. Confrontation is not my strong suit and never has been.
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Old 04-20-2011, 09:13 AM
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You deserve to be treated with respect. While you say he may not have done things like some of the other posts you read, you also say that he is not supportive or loving.
I noticed that you wrote that too Alone and I thought of a few things when I read it:

1) Alcoholism (the behaviors and thinking, not just the drinking) is progressive. Maybe he's "not that bad" now but he will be and when you live with it day in and out, even as it gets worse, you lose perspective so what's far from okay, and is in fact very abusive, can't really be seen as such by us for a long time bc we are used to it. Lying, blaming, not being a loving and supportive spouse sure sound awful to me. Lack of affection is abuse-- the covert, un-physical types of abuse that hurt our souls are all just as abusive as punching someone. But there's no tangible way to measure that abuse and so we stay longer than we should bc we tell ourselves someone has it worse and we believe what we are told by our AH's (that we're making a big deal out of nothing... etc...)

2) Like you I told myself for a long time that if my AH started acting in clearly abusive ways it would make it so much easier to make a decision and leave. It hasn't made it easier. He's gone from occasional verbal abuse, to constant. He plays mind games, he spreads rumors to make me look like the problem. He has been physically abusive. He has stolen money, he lies, he isn't safe when he is with our kids. He does a lot of things that used to be on my list of "if he ever does x, I will leave". And I haven't (at least not permanently). If you wait for it to get bad enough that you feel it's "clear" he's abusive you'll be so co-dependent and enmeshed that you will believe what he tells you (it's your fault, you're imagining things, you're too sensitive etc..).

3) I waited a long time thinking if I talked to my AH enough about how I felt, or found things to read on relationships, or fixed the things he said I needed to fix that any or all of this would be the key to the puzzle and everything would be okay. There's nothing you or I or anyone can do that is going to make a relationship with an A be okay. It's not going to be okay, ever for as long as there is active addiction (and this goes on even when the drinking stops in a lot of cases). All you can do is protect YOU and your kids. I've struggled with leaving bc I didn't want to give up on the hope and the image of what I thought marriage and family would be. But hoping and holding out for someone else to change doesn't do a thing except make me angry, crazy and hurt my self esteem, and subject my kids to insanity. I don't want to be alone, but I have been alone emotionally for a long time so it's accepting that the dream of a family I thought I'd have isn't there and being okay with being miserable about that but still moving fwd.

How YOU feel about what your H is doing is what matters. He won't ever feel that it's a problem for as long as he's drinking. If your quality of life is impacted bc of what life is like with him think about what you can do differently? Can you go stay elsewhere? Can he? Can you limit your interactions with him? Can you set boundaries for yourself about what you will and won't tolerate and follow through if need be?

You and your kids deserve a better life. Your H does too for that matter, but he's the only one who can control that and right now unfortunately, you're the only one who can control what your life is going to be like... It would be lovely if the way marriage should be was what our lives were like-- a collaboration, mutual care and respect etc... but that's not possible with an alcoholic. I've thought that if I waited long enough my AH would see my "devotion" and start to make some efforts for "us" too. All that's come of that is me sacrificing and wasting precious years of my life. Not anymore.
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Old 04-20-2011, 11:15 AM
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One thing I will say is that my AH was like yours, generally nice, made a good living, good dad to the kids, seemed nice to everyone we knew, until one day he wasn't. He was able to be a heavy drinker and mildly depressed person but functional until he was 39 and then he totally lost it. He has been an out of control crazy alcoholic for the past two years. So, your situation may very well progress. I NEVER thought this would get this bad.
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Old 04-20-2011, 05:21 PM
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You guys are amazing. The support, advise and general understanding is great! What is funny there is this TINY part of me at times that will still question if my AH is really an A and that maybe I am just too uptight...but then reading here things that are exactly like my AH gives me the smack up the side of my head I need. Kind of goes back to if it walks like a duck and quack likes a duck then it is a duck. It may look a little different than another duck but it is still a dang duck.

Focusing in on me is really helping. I can see the light at the end of the tunnel now and I am walking as fast as I can into that light. Untwisting myself from my AH illness is going to take a little time, but I am worth the effort!
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Old 04-21-2011, 11:04 PM
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Originally Posted by FindingPeace1
That's it.
I wasn't willing to rock the boat for ME...
but when I got pregnant, that little being came into my life and gifted me with seeing that I WAS willing to rock the boat for her/him.
So I did some boat rocking and the ship sank.
Well, boats need to be designed to rock.
If they sink, they weren't meant for sea.
FindingPeace,

thank you so much for this. i really, really like it. if it wasn't too real, it would be hilarious. thanks again.

Alone22,

i'm glad that you're finding some much needed support. also from your posts, seems that you are doing better. so glad for you. things will get better in time. stay strong and keep on doing what's best for you and your kids.

hugs and prayers.
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