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Need support with THIS boundary

Old 04-24-2011, 08:19 PM
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Need support with THIS boundary

Hi everyone, im stuck on boundaries now. I am thinking about not picking my boyfriend up from the train anymore (no license because of DUI). I don't think I can go so far as to not drive him anywhere anymore, yet. But this would be a start. I pick him up from the train 2 nights a week. One night is an alanon meeting that I really like to attend but have to leave early to pick him up in time- so he can wait, or find another ride- likely his MOM Or a taxi. That one would be for me. But the second night, I don't have a "reason" thats for me, and I don't want to make something up. I suppose I don't need a reason... There have been times in the past when I haven't picked him up because I was busy doing something for me... but I am scared to do this every time. It would be a HUGE HUGE change, and I'm scared! please, help, support, guidance, anything you have to offer me! Thank you!
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Old 04-24-2011, 08:24 PM
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talk to him about it and tell him what you are going to do. If you have boundaries between the two of you that prohibit conversation about things like this then what are you "together" for?
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Old 04-24-2011, 08:26 PM
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You are on the right track, here. CN.

This is something that limits your life, your growth... There is no need to give him a reason.
You dont want to enable his irresponsibility for himself anymore at your own expense.

He will probably not like it.

This is a good boundary. I can relate to feeling scared. But this is the beginning of a path of taking your own life energy back.

Its yours.
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Old 04-24-2011, 08:51 PM
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You are doing good, CN. Setting those boundaries are hard. And Buffalo's right: You don't need a reason. But that's one of the hardest thing for us to do -- realizing that we have the right to make choices that are good for us without having to justify them to someone else.
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Old 04-24-2011, 08:59 PM
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Originally Posted by Francismcan View Post
talk to him about it and tell him what you are going to do. If you have boundaries between the two of you that prohibit conversation about things like this then what are you "together" for?
In my other post I was told I do not need to discuss my boundaries with him if they are for me... thoughts please?
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Old 04-24-2011, 09:33 PM
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I'm all for setting boundaries and he may not like it but the ability to communicate what is going on is still important to me. If someone's behavior was changing around me, I'd want to know why.

Not picking someone up is the action but the boundary is: I won't pick him up under these circumstances and I wont' let him change my mind. I will think carefully anytime I provide transportationf or him and say no when I feel like it.

That is the part you don't have to tell him about. When you set that boundary, then no, you don't have to tell him.
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Old 04-24-2011, 09:41 PM
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Originally Posted by Babyblue View Post
No one should tell you what to do on these boards. I'm all for setting boundaries and he may not like it but at least it maintains your ability to communicate.

I don't see not picking someone up as setting a boundary. To me that would be after I tell them I can't pick them up and if they try to pursuade me to change my mind, that is when the boundary goes into place (I won't let him pursaude me to change my mind about this).
I understand, thanks
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Old 04-24-2011, 09:43 PM
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I agree, not picking him up is not setting a boundary-its letting him experience the consequences of his drinking. I look at it as "not enabling." I would just tell him you have important things for yourself to do and sorry, he'll have to find another ride.
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Old 04-24-2011, 09:54 PM
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I'm with Sandra on this one, doing what you're not supposed to be doing is what got you in trouble in the 1st place. As time passes, things will get better, you'll get your license back; if he is mad for not being able to get a ride, now, just think of how happy he'll be when you're able to do it legally again :-) right now your recovery is more important than him getting an easy ride. So he has to work a little bit harder. That's okay, he'll be doing it for you, and that should make you both feel good. Honesty is a big part recovery; honesty with yourself includes honesty with the law. Be happy that you have a car and maybe find somebody else, it can drive you in your car, it will be like you're being chauffeured around, how nice!
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Old 04-24-2011, 11:16 PM
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Originally Posted by Decahedron View Post
I'm with Sandra on this one, doing what you're not supposed to be doing is what got you in trouble in the 1st place. As time passes, things will get better, you'll get your license back; if he is mad for not being able to get a ride, now, just think of how happy he'll be when you're able to do it legally again :-) right now your recovery is more important than him getting an easy ride. So he has to work a little bit harder. That's okay, he'll be doing it for you, and that should make you both feel good. Honesty is a big part recovery; honesty with yourself includes honesty with the law. Be happy that you have a car and maybe find somebody else, it can drive you in your car, it will be like you're being chauffeured around, how nice!
Thank you Dec, maybe my post was unclear but my alcoholic bf is the one without the license. I am trying to learn to set boundaries so that I can protect myself, my sanity and stop enabling him. And just to add, doing things for the other person is what got ME into trouble... forgetting how to take care of MYSELF!! And LOL to the chauffer part... im sure he just LOVES to be driven around everywhere! (not really), I know he sees it as a burden. its all part of the sickness, the remorse, the guilt
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Old 04-25-2011, 05:25 AM
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I suppose I'd give him a couple of weeks or more notice before cutting off the rides. After all, he's reasonably come to believe you are able to pick him up.

You could say something like, "It's really becoming a problem for me to pick you up at the train. You're going to need to find another way to get home. I can do it for the next couple of weeks, but after that, you will have to have other arrangements in place."

Just out of curiosity, how does he get home the other nights of the week? How does he get TO the train in the morning?
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Old 04-25-2011, 06:03 AM
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Originally Posted by LexieCat View Post
I suppose I'd give him a couple of weeks or more notice before cutting off the rides. After all, he's reasonably come to believe you are able to pick him up.

You could say something like, "It's really becoming a problem for me to pick you up at the train. You're going to need to find another way to get home. I can do it for the next couple of weeks, but after that, you will have to have other arrangements in place."

Just out of curiosity, how does he get home the other nights of the week? How does he get TO the train in the morning?
Ok Lexie, you asked! (i started off with a small paragraph and wrote a book...) Well you see, he's made it quite easy (logistically that is) for himself... he owns a business. He has a set up in his office- with a shower i might add! (not a cubie or anything) where he sleeps most nights. he has two separated days off a week. So, the night before his day off, he takes the train home (I, or his mom, or a taxi) picks him up because the train closest to our house doesn't run on time with the train he arrives at (it takes 2 trains to get to home/work). Then he has his day off. Then the morning he goes back to work, he can walk to the train nearest our house because going TO work the train times line up. Now, you'd think this would be hard for me, but i work overnight, so the nights he stays at work, i am usually at work... my days off are his days off, now you see the pattern of codependency. ugh. I took over the reign of picking him up for his mom. Now, just to clarify something... he hates sleeping at work. He feels like its a cell, he never really leaves on the nights he stays there... he feels trapped in a sense. He has told me he's tired of the monotony, that he feels like he's in prison. This can't be good psychologically for him... and at first i tried to "help him" find ways to sort it out (change my schedule, try to get him to talk to a lawyer to get his license back, etc) i was driving the bus so to speak. I don't want to do this anymore. It really is so hard, I really do love him and I don't want to directly cause him pain, but its like really sick to know that I want him to feel the pain because I think it will bring him closer to finding his own sobriety. But in order to do that, he has to make the connection between his drinking and the actions im taking for me. Let me clarify that a little if im not clear.

I dont think he would connect "its becoming a problem for me to pick you up at the train" with, "picking him up at the train is enabling him and not allowing him to face the consequences of his drinking and im no longer going to enable him in this way." I mean, im not stopping enabling him to manipulate him into action... or maybe i am! Oh no... im confusing myself. Im gonna keep typing and see if i can get out of it.

I don't want to pick him up one night because there is an alanon meeting and i want to stay till the end. I feel justified in using that as a reason, FOR ME, that i dont want to pick him up. The other night, i guess i dont feel justified in saying no. im usually not doing anything the other night, its not a burden, its later in the night, and if something comes up i do want to do for me, i tell him to find another ride. But ultimately, ANY time I drive him around for his benefit is enabling. ya know?

And this brings me onto enabling. When we attempt to eliminate enabling, isn't this in an attempt to get the alcoholic to face his/her own actions/consequences? To allow them to be face to face with themselves? I mean, I think it could serve a dual purpose. Not enabling would bring me more peace, but could also do the above mentioned for the A.

Whew!
Ok, go ahead... quote away and give it to me, SR!
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Old 04-25-2011, 06:20 AM
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CN... you're on the very right track!!! It's clicking for you... I see it in your post, even if you dont!

Eliminating enabling is about living and let living. It's not doing for others what they can and SHOULD be doing for themselves. When we make a mistake, there are consequences for it. You pay a bill late, there's a fee or penalty. When you drink and drive, you get a DWI - you can lose your license. If you lose your license, you can't drive. You can't drive, you don't work. You can't work, you don't have money.

There are all sorts of things that can happen to us and everyone around us. What happens in an alcoholic/codependent relationship is life gets out of balance. We the codependents intercept the "consequences"... for a whole host of reasons, but the largest and simplest is that we think we are helping. The reality is we are preventing them from living their life and dealing with the consquences of their choices (enabling).

It's completely up to you what you want to do about the train rides. Don't overthink it too much...lest you'll spin your wheels and not move forward. Small steps are better than no steps.
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Old 04-25-2011, 08:12 AM
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*shakes head* since when is HIS problems NOW all of a sudden yours?..

THEY ARE NOT

you live your life as you see fit..and i would not let anyone stand in my way for my meetings NO BODY...

i dont care how he gets home...not my worry...
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Old 04-25-2011, 09:03 AM
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I think what Dec is saying, is you could say all those things to your ABF. the "You" means him lol

Originally Posted by concernednurse View Post
Thank you Dec, maybe my post was unclear but my alcoholic bf is the one without the license. I am trying to learn to set boundaries so that I can protect myself, my sanity and stop enabling him. And just to add, doing things for the other person is what got ME into trouble... forgetting how to take care of MYSELF!! And LOL to the chauffer part... im sure he just LOVES to be driven around everywhere! (not really), I know he sees it as a burden. its all part of the sickness, the remorse, the guilt
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Old 04-25-2011, 09:04 AM
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Because as we all know, alcoholics need enablers to keep their disease going!!

His life has become unmanageable. But instead of facing that, and therefore facing the consequences of his addiction, he just uses her to manage it for him!

It's that simple.

Originally Posted by fourmaggie View Post
*shakes head* since when is HIS problems NOW all of a sudden yours?..

THEY ARE NOT

you live your life as you see fit..and i would not let anyone stand in my way for my meetings NO BODY...

i dont care how he gets home...not my worry...
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Old 04-25-2011, 09:05 AM
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Well said.

Originally Posted by GettingBy View Post

There are all sorts of things that can happen to us and everyone around us. What happens in an alcoholic/codependent relationship is life gets out of balance. We the codependents intercept the "consequences"... for a whole host of reasons, but the largest and simplest is that we think we are helping. The reality is we are preventing them from living their life and dealing with the consquences of their choices (enabling)..
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Old 04-25-2011, 10:10 AM
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I agree that Gettingby said it very well...this is a choice versus a boundary, as far as I am concerned. A boundary is something a little different (like "I will not stick around and let you abuse me" or "I will not spend time with you if you are intoxicated" or "I will not pay your bills if you lose your job because of your actions")

Picking him up is an act of kindness. If it conflicts with your plans (like a meeting, very important) than give him notice to make other arrangements. That is all you owe him. Some notice. And press on with meeting your own needs. If the other evening works for you, keep doing it. You don't need a reason nor justification. Just the confidence to make your own decisions and stop worrying about his potential responses or hurting his feelings or putting him out. He's a grown man - he'll find another way all by himself!
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Old 04-25-2011, 11:11 AM
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I might be weird but I have a work-week regimen that I really have to follow in order to get sufficient rest and be able to perform at a high level at work. I don't go out in the evenings or nights on work nights, because not doing so helps me maintain peace and serenity in my life. It took me a long time to identify calm, quiet evenings with limited activity and early bedtimes as a personal need. But now, I don't start major projects or take care of big chores on these evenings, I don't accept phone calls after a certain time, and I don't go anywhere unless it is an emergency. If a friend called me up in a bind of course I would go, but there is no way on earth I would regularly go out of my way to provide transportation for another adult.

Managing MY life and MY responsibilities is ENOUGH for me to handle. And I don't even have children. Believe it or not, there ARE many people on earth I can be in a relationship with who manage their own lives well and therefore CONTRIBUTE to my health and well-being instead of being DETRIMENTAL TO my health and well-being.

Every person is responsible for his or her own life. And I have learned that my thinking, speaking, or behaving as though another grown adult is incapable of figuring out how to manage his or her own life really is (1) hurting me and (2) hurting that person. I used to go out of my way ALL THE TIME for other people. Changing that felt like I was being selfish, and sometimes still does feel like I'm being selfish. But I've also learned that my perceptions regarding this are distorted. Although it may FEEL selfish at times, taking the BEST care of myself I possibly can is NOT selfish.

It sounds to me like you simply do not want to be his Soccer Mom any longer. In that case, my advice would be: Stop picking him up. And don't worry about his reaction. Just tell him straight, "I do not want to pick you up any longer, please find another form of transportation." And walk away.
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Old 04-25-2011, 03:25 PM
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Bottom line-- if he can get himself home from the train but you are picking him up it's enabling and protecting him from the consequences of his behavior (like others have said).

If it's easy for you to do and not a hardship at all, why not? But he's going to have to deal with whatever you do or don't do. He doesn't get to whine about it.

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