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Old 05-19-2011, 09:18 PM
  # 21 (permalink)  
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im so sorry -- gosh, those conversations... ugh. just STAY strong. keep remembering the all of us on here have had the same conversation--so don't take any of it as any semblance of truth.

because we are in a relationship, we trusted that person and let all of our vulnerabilities show. unfortunately, to an alcoholic... this means that we showed them the bullseye of where to hit us.

the hits below the belt have no bearing on truth, they're just verbal punches - a way to hurt when they've been backed into the wall and just feel so much pain themself. remember, they're in "survival" mode during those moments when LIFE (not just us) holds up a mirror to show them the reality of their destruction. because of this, they have to "survive" and the only way for that to happen is to keep on grasping at the world THEY want to believe in--which is based in delusion. so OF COURSE they have to hit us below the belt... there will never be a world in their eyes where something is THEIR responsibility. he'll blame everything on u--especially the demise of your relationship.

again, im sorry. those conversations are the things the play a loop... just arm yourself with supportive people... and hold strong to YOUR sense of self. you did nothing wrong. you gave your all to a relationship you cared about deeply.
:day6
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Old 05-19-2011, 09:36 PM
  # 22 (permalink)  
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WTBH, it isn't personal, remember?

Even when a situation seems so personal, even if others insult you directly, it has nothing to do with you. What they say, what they do, and the opinions they give are according to the agreements they have in their own minds…Taking things personally makes you easy prey for these predators, the black magicians. They can hook you easily with one little opinion and feed you whatever poison they want, and because you take it personally, you eat it up….

from The Four Agreements
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Old 05-19-2011, 09:52 PM
  # 23 (permalink)  
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I am living the same life and the same situation -- the same discussion. It happens often. Never when she's sober -- only when she's drunk.

Social drinking was fun, for both of us, but her excessive and binge drinking IS MY FAULT. I CAUSED IT. If it weren't for me, she would not be drinking.

The drinking would stop if I was a better person, a better husband. The drinking, and everything that goes along with it -- the anger, rage, nastiness, irresponsibility, belligerence, etc. -- would stop, if we were a true, real family (meaning if we had a child/children or adopted a child). Her not having a child or us not adopting -- which I caused and which is my fault -- caused her unhappiness and caused her drinking. That's the only reason she's drinking. But "other" drinking and reasons are also my fault, exclusively. Everything wrong in her life -- is my fault. I caused all of it.

I am so lucky. I never believed any of this for one moment. I am extremely grateful for an anon.
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Old 05-19-2011, 09:53 PM
  # 24 (permalink)  
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So . . . it's hard. Very hard. It hurts. Be strong. Keep focusing on yourself and do not take part in these discussions and attacks.

All the best.
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Old 05-19-2011, 10:34 PM
  # 25 (permalink)  
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I'm so sorry, WTBH. Remember, just because he says it, doesn't mean it's true. In fact, I'm thinking that whatever useless cr-p he's spewing that he says is about you is really about him:

I've been drinking you away for years = I've been drinking to try to get away from myself for years.

Hope you're feeling stronger soon. Wishing you peace and sending hugs.
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Old 05-19-2011, 11:28 PM
  # 26 (permalink)  
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You know you deserve better than this, right? You know he's trying to blameshift but it isn't your fault? He's incapable of seeing his part, he has to think that you're the blame for everything - this is how XAH talked and shouted at me for the better part of a year before we seperated. You will get through this. You will make it, one step at a time - promise.
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Old 05-20-2011, 12:59 AM
  # 27 (permalink)  
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(((hugs)))

All you want is their best, and all you get is their worst.

Makes you crazy. Makes you question reality. What it is. Trust what you know -- regardless of how much you cried, you knew, somewhere, that he was wrong, and that it was over. Trust that.
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Old 05-20-2011, 02:58 AM
  # 28 (permalink)  
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Funny - I had a dream last night in which I asked my XAH to stay home from work just one day because I wasn't feeling well and pretty much got the dream version of what you guys are describing above. I woke up sick to my stomach and in a cold sweat. Why does this still bother me? In real life, I just hang up when this kinda crap starts. Yet I dream about it and I am right back where I was 5/6 years ago? Ugh. I feel scummy right now.

But one thing I did learn about alkies - they often threaten but rarely follow through. Does he have a recording of your conversation? And what are the chances he will even remember what was said once he sobers up, if ever? In fact, that phone calls to me sounds like further evidence that you should suceed in court - what kind of person keeps digging and digging into a person after they are sobbing, begging them to stop? What a tool.

And anytime you have doubts about leaving him, just remember this - you have daughters. You don't want them to grow up and get with someone who treats women just like their Daddy treated you. They deserve better and so do you!

Stay strong! We are here! Not to mention that those of us of the squirrely persuasion must stick together....there are cats and stuff out there ya know.....
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Old 05-20-2011, 03:52 AM
  # 29 (permalink)  
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Granted Im an alcoholic so not totally in your shoes BUT i do have people that trigger me-BIG TIME. My therapist gave me the 5 minute rule. It was hard to get used to but MAN do I feel powerful ending the conversation--even when it is a pleasant one. I answer the phone and the clock is ticking 5 minutes..I know they are alive and well they know Im alive and well... BOOM gotta go! Abusers change their tune once they realize you wont give up blocks of your time for their bull $hit.
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Old 05-20-2011, 04:00 AM
  # 30 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by forgotten1 View Post

because we are in a relationship, we trusted that person and let all of our vulnerabilities show. unfortunately, to an alcoholic... this means that we showed them the bullseye of where to hit us.

the hits below the belt have no bearing on truth, they're just verbal punches - a way to hurt when they've been backed into the wall and just feel so much pain themself. remember, they're in "survival" mode during those moments when LIFE (not just us) holds up a mirror to show them the reality of their destruction. because of this, they have to "survive" and the only way for that to happen is to keep on grasping at the world THEY want to believe in--which is based in delusion. so OF COURSE they have to hit us below the belt... there will never be a world in their eyes where something is THEIR responsibility. he'll blame everything on u--especially the demise of your relationship.
This is so true..

Hi WTBS,
Im so sorry for what you and you're family are going through because of his alcoholism. I was your husband in my relationship. Everything was always happening to ME and it was never my fault and argued the same arguement. If he were like this or did that, I wouldn't be drinking.
We alcoholics need to put the blame of our unhappiness on others. It's what makes the decision to drink an easy one. It allows us to think/feel that we have valid reasons to. The selfishness of "everything happens to ME!", the self loathing, and feeling sorry for oneself is an alcoholics fuel. We allow it to make us believe that we actually even have a right to.

When he brought up things I didn't want to hear, which was often, I'd attack verbally and say the meanest things. My rants were meant to hurt him. Seeing him pissed or hurt was my goal. Like a bully, I was unhappy w/ myself and needed to see him hurt and broken down to make me feel better. It was sick. It was my way of transferring my negative energy (feelings, shame, disgust) onto him. I was feeling better, while he was hurt or worked up and mad.
(Im so glad I'm not that person anymore!)
Alcohol throws all logic, dignity and self respect out the window and we become selfish, immature a-holes who lose all ability to act, communicate and even argue like normal adults.
But like others have said, it has nothing to do w/ you, and until he gets better, he's going to continue to think it does. He has too. Its whats keeping him from facing his responsibilities and prevents him from feeling guilt and actually consider that he's the problem.

I know how upset you get at yourself for listening to all his crap and letting him affect you the way he does. My SO has told me that he would kick himself for allowing me to get into his head and responding to it. That it would consume him mentally and emotionally.
I know its frustrating, but if anything good can come out of this, its that your building up your BS radar and one day, you will be able to hear him and just let it roll of your sholders and have absolutely no affect on you. It takes time, because you guys are dealing w/ people you fell in love with. Someone you live with, have children with and wanted to build a life with and can't fathom why they would choose alcohol over you, the fam, the life.
You're choices and reasons are yours and don't have to answer or explain them to anybody. Sometimes we think we have it all figured out and know what to do, then that pesky little heart creeps in, and we start thinking with our hearts. You're just going through your learning process in dealing with what this relationship has become and even though it may not feel like it now, getting stronger for it.

I wish you, your kids, and yes, even him...all the best.
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Old 05-20-2011, 04:45 AM
  # 31 (permalink)  
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I had conversations exactly like the one you described over and over again. it would break my heart and the punishment I received or felt never, ever met the crime. For example I once asked nicely if my AH could reduce his beer consumption, for this I was subjected to 15 mins or more of a verbally abusive backlash being called all the names under the sun. They seem to know just the right things to say, they can detect weaknesses a mile off. Once you react, they know what works and dont give up, Sometimes adding a new weakness for more effect.

My AH was emotionally abusive but I didn't recognise it for what is was for 22 years! You can imagine the damage that did to me and my self esteem.

Well 18 months of SR, Al-anon and a year of therapy later, its clear as day to me now and I dont let my AH get away with any of it. I stop the conversation dead, if I feel myself getting dragged in. I just say 'that's it, this conversation is over' and walk away or do something else. If he is blame-shifting - I tell him, if he is being passive aggressive - I tell him, if hes quacking, I laugh to myself or sometimes laugh out loud if what he says is really outrageous. All of these things usually stop him dead and the verbal abuse has stopped because I dont stick with a fight and so it doesn't escalate to that stage.

I am currently planning my escape and am coping really well with detaching. Admittedly, I am detaching with anger and quite a bit of bitterness, but whatever works. I dont like him at all, and dont care what is going to happen to him, so its been good for me. I haven't had as many tears and feel strong in my resolve to leave him and excited about starting a new life. I wont be sucked back in this time.

The best thing that my therapist ever explained to me, is that we all have core values. My therapist would visit prisoners who would excuse their behavior on alcohol. Lots of people drink alcohol but never hold up banks, steal, beat their wives or speak to their wives in an verbally abusive manner or tone. These things happen because of who they are in their core and stopping drinking isnt going to solve that. Not without a lot of therapy on their part.

That has helped me separate the person he is from the person he is when drinking. I dont like either one.

You will get there. You recognised what happened and your on SR, so have great support.
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Old 05-20-2011, 06:09 AM
  # 32 (permalink)  
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I too have been in a many of those conversations and hours of crying in the shower following them. My AH moved out and only lasted four months on his own before realizing he "did" have a drinking problem that wasnt my fault.
Now a struggling RAH back in my home, he doesnt remember those arguments he said in the joys of drinking and I do remember everyone of them while enduring it all sober. Thats what i regret the most. "Listening" and believing all those "wild" claims... He brushes them off with a "im sorry, its the disease".. but i live with them haunting me..
Now i don't engage and i don't internalize what he says and how GREAT that is now!! I wish i had done it years, years earlier.
Using what an alcoholic says to validate your character is like going to the gas station clerk and asking them to preform heart surgery...
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Old 05-20-2011, 06:13 AM
  # 33 (permalink)  
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"Gaslighting" is exactly what this is: a form of psychological abuse in which false information is presented to you with the intent of making you doubt your own memory, experience, and perception. The purpose is to disorient and confuse you and make you feel as responsible for this mess as he can.

My AH (or "R"AH or whatever he is) doesn't do this to me, but this was classic behavior from my capital-N Narcissistic ex. By the time I was finally able to get away from him, I was so wrecked I couldn't trust myself to tell you what direction was up and what direction was down.

I feel for you, and I hope that when he is pulling this stuff on you that you can conjure up what you KNOW is true ("this guy is ate up with booze and is abusing me because he hates himself for it") to maintain the brain space to do what you have to do to protect yourself in that situation, whatever that is (hang up the phone, disengage, DTMFA, whatever).

Hugs, lady.
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Old 05-20-2011, 06:53 AM
  # 34 (permalink)  
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I am a lot calmer today... Still hurt, stinging, hearing the words play over but I also know that I let the conversation continue. I needed to hang up and didn't and that was all me.

To answer the question many asked (albeit rhetorically) about whether I know it's not my fault he's behaving this way... No, I don't know that. Intellectually yes. Emotionally, after a night of his using every last insult I ever shared with him that hurt me the most from my BPD Mother-- no, I am having a hard time not believing, as I have for most of my life, that if I did or didn't do something differently, this wouldn't have happened.

I know it's irrational and a feeling and not fact. But I feel it and continue to work on dealing with changing how I think of myself.

I appreciate everyone's words-- I need to remind myself of all that you all wrote and am not feeling strong and wonderful today and will be reading this over, reminding myself of reality and seeing my sponsor after work. Hoping the combination of all 3 will get me centered again...
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Old 05-20-2011, 07:07 AM
  # 35 (permalink)  
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If you can do this you might consider just no contact for a few days...until you get yourself back to feeling better. If you have to discuss the kids, just do that, nothing more.

He chose alcohol over his family, why should he get the privilege of conversation with someone he beats down?...and yes, it is a privilege that he is allowed to speak with you...he just doesn't know it yet.

sometimes a line in the sand is not enough...you have to build a brick wall to protect yourself.
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Old 05-20-2011, 07:15 AM
  # 36 (permalink)  
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Good idea Fandy. I've been afraid to do that bc I don't want the threat of "you're keeping the girls from me" but I guess he can call and I can hand d5 the phone and not have to even answer...

I told him last night to please research & buy life insurance today bc if he plans to continue his slow march to death, I don't want the girls left destitute.

That probably wasn't a nice thing to say but it's true- he does need to get life insurance and I bought some years ago and shocker, he's been delaying it...
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Old 05-20-2011, 07:44 AM
  # 37 (permalink)  
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I'm sorry you have to deal with that hogwash.
Keep your spirits up.
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Old 05-20-2011, 07:56 AM
  # 38 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by wanttobehealthy View Post
Good idea Fandy. I've been afraid to do that bc I don't want the threat of "you're keeping the girls from me" but I guess he can call and I can hand d5 the phone and not have to even answer...

I told him last night to please research & buy life insurance today bc if he plans to continue his slow march to death, I don't want the girls left destitute.

That probably wasn't a nice thing to say but it's true- he does need to get life insurance and I bought some years ago and shocker, he's been delaying it...
you can take out a policy on him and make your daughters beneficiaries...at least you would know that the premiums are paid.

You don't always have to be *nice*....you can be matter of fact and truthful...he's a big boy, he made his decision.
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Old 05-20-2011, 07:59 AM
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I tried to take out a policy on him back when I bought mine and was told he had to get a physical to get the particular rate... He never did.

I guess I should investigate. Can I get policies without him signing on or getting a physical?
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Old 05-20-2011, 08:13 AM
  # 40 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by wanttobehealthy View Post
Good idea Fandy. I've been afraid to do that bc I don't want the threat of "you're keeping the girls from me" but I guess he can call and I can hand d5 the phone and not have to even answer...
He was drinking while they were in his care. Talk to your lawyer, talk to your therapist, document the incident. You have every right to keep them from him if he is going to drink while caring for them.

I had to learn how to "manage" my phone conversations with my AH when we were separated. If I had to talk with him about finances or the children, then that's the only thing I would talk about. If he tried to hijack the conversation and veer off the topic, I would get off the phone. Sometimes it was polite (I'm late for something, gotta go), and sometimes I would just hang up. It took some time, but eventually he stopped trying to change the subject. He knew the conversation would be over as soon as he did.

L
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