What i've learned from you wonderful people

Old 06-07-2011, 07:42 PM
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Join Date: Nov 2010
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What i've learned from you wonderful people

The definition of alcoholism which I read and see over and over and over again is "if alcohol is interfering with any area of a person’s life, chances are that person is an alcoholic.”

I'd say it's interfering in my life. I'd say it's interfering in my AH's life, BIG TIME.

The only statement that applies to all alcoholics is that an alcoholic is a person who cannot drink normally.

My AH says he drinks to forget; he drinks to stuff things inside. He drinks because he's happy. He drinks because he's sad. He drinks when he's angry; or wants to celebrate. Or if it's a sunny day. Or a rainy day. Or even if it's Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday or Friday! But the alcohol has become a need. His “I need a drink to relax” has become a vicious cycle, creating physical and emotional dependency.

Emotional growth tends to result from confronting discomfort or pain. If he were able to remember clearly, he would have to admit that the times he grew the most were during times of trial. The happy times, the carefree times, were not growing times. Growth seems to come with a desire to develop or change, along with a discomfort about the way things are. Since he is busy anesthetizing himself against unpleasant reality, he cannot develop emotionally.

One of the things the alcohol does is dis-inhibit. It makes him feel freer to say and do things that he might not ordinarily say and do.

As the drinking progressed, his repressed feelings have started to emerge.

And his perception of reality has become distorted.

And his emotions are not properly directed. Since the alcohol is distorting his perception, the emotions he expresses are not necessarily appropriate to the situation. More often than not, the feelings expressed towards me are antagonistic.

Talking about how he feels can take the edge off, but resolving these feelings takes work. He goes no further than blowing off steam or dumping his feelings on me. He has repressed his anger, so he behaves in an angry manner towards me.

Whether I believe him or not, I listen and I am terribly hurt. I know that since his perceptions are distorted, he may be lying when he thinks he is telling the truth. And telling the truth when he thinks he is lying. Even if what he says is true, I can only believe it for the moment he is saying it.
I know that when he is drunk, he is not the person I married. I don't know him at all. He is a stranger to me. But I also know that he doesn’t seem like the man I married because he is not the man I married. And that is the reality of the situation.

When he is drinking, he is able to forget his fears, at least to himself, and feels in control. He can be very cunning, very charming, and very manipulative. I've fallen victim to his charms over and over, only to be shattered when his personality changes. Perhaps he has convinced me this time --- he really means it. He’ll show up. He won’t be gone long. He’s only going to have a few. But of course, he doesn’t show up. He is gone all evening. He has way more than a few. I fall for his story every time, as he is exceedingly clever. And I want so badly to believe him. This time it will be different. How vulnerable and trusting I am. The disease wins every time. He is powerless over alcohol, and so am I.

I watch and feel cut off and lonely too. I start to wonder if I wouldn’t feel less lonely than I do now, if I was completely without him. My pain is raw.
He is a perfectionist. He cannot tolerate lack of perfectionism in himself, or in others. There is no way for anyone to meet his standards. The inability to find an effective way of dealing with his frustration caused by the need to be perfect becomes unmanageable. His reactions are out of proportion to the situation, which gives him an excuse to drink.

Authority figures mean nothing to him when he’s drinking. He has the same reactions as anyone else when he is sober, but when he is drinking no one is going to tell him what to do.

What he doesn’t get and what I used to tell him over and over again is this: NO ONE CAN LIVE WITH AN ALCOHOLIC WITHOUT BEING PROFOUNDLY AFFECTED. And I have been profoundly affected. I don't know from day-to-day, even hour-to-hour, what to expect. I imagine all kinds of terrible things. I become obsessed with what will happen when he gets home (if he gets home). My time is spent in emotional turmoil. My head keeps spinning. I can’t sleep. I don't eat properly. I withdraw. I snap at people.
I have become sick. I have developed a disease also. And my disease can be every bit as damaging as his disease. The degree to which one gets this disease is directly related to their emotional nearness to the alcoholic. Since I have the most continual and relevant contact with him, I am the most vulnerable.

Denial is part of both of our diseases. He expends energy denying the fact that he cannot control his drinking. He seems to control it for long periods of times (meaning, days). I know that these periods of time will grow shorter as his disease progresses. I know that he probably won’t seek help until he can no longer deny his lack of control and until the results of his behavior have been so horrifying that he feels the pain despite his drug. I feel sad that it will have to come to that.

I deny that it is what it is. I hold out hope that he can just quit…that he will WANT to just quit. But denial makes both of our lives a lie. It distorts reality for both of us.

He becomes an expert at projecting his guilty feelings on to me. I become an expert at accepting them. When he avoids responsibility for his behavior, yelling, “You drive me to drink!” I take it on myself.

As the disease occupies more and more of his thoughts, it has the same effect on me. Life is no longer predictable and I am continually worried. What will happen next? When will it happen? Where is he? Will he be home on time? Will he get hurt? Where will he go? Will he hurt someone else? Will he raise his hands at me in anger (something he has never done)? How can I get him to stop drinking? Where have I gone wrong? Why do I love him? Do I still love him?

These thoughts crowd out all other thoughts. I go through the motions of living, but my mind is elsewhere --- always on him. This obsession is a waste of energy because it solves nothing. I know this…I always tells him the same thing when he is obsessing. It doesn’t help…it doesn’t solve anything. But knowing this does not help much. I am trapped. I have lost control of my thoughts.

I lose confidence in myself, and I become fearful and anxious. Situations that at one time were not at all threatening become overwhelming. I can’t explain why. It makes me behave in irrational ways. I am spinning my wheels with no place to go.

The most destructive are the lies that aren’t really lies. They are truthful in intent, but not in execution. He says, “I’ll be home at 7:00 for dinner.” He is not lying. He fully intends to be home at 7:00, but he does not arrive home at 7:00 because there is a world of difference between his intent and his ability to carry it out.

This kind of behavior adds to the confusion and disorganization of our family and our relationship. Truth has lost its meaning, and perceptions of reality have become distorted. I simply do not know what to believe. In the end, I believe pretty much what I want to believe. This leads to constantly setting myself up for a letdown. He is so convincing, and I would rather believe him than the evidence of last week’s burnt dinner.

Part of what throws me into confusion and despair is the building up of my hopes and the subsequent disappointments. Unable to accept reality, I am living in fantasy. I think of him in terms of what he was or could be. When he makes a promise I respond as if he were that person. When he does not fulfill his promise, I am let down much more than I would be if I had not believed him in the first place. If he does keep his promise, I am so excited that I become euphoric. This, of course, sets me up for greater disappointment the next time. The alternating feelings of false hope, disappointment and euphoria add to my confusion and fear.
How many times do I really believe that this time he will follow through? We were getting along so well. He hadn’t drank in days. This time would be different. How many times have I said these words to myself? How many times has he said those words to himself? Yes, it’s different. It’s worse. The disease progresses. I am not in control. He is not in control. The alcohol is in control.

I become confused. I don't know what to believe or what to expect. Since he is pulling the strings, I am dancing to a very inconsistent tune. My sense of what is real becomes distorted. Every day is more unmanageable.
It is hard for me to think straight. In fact, it is very hard for me to think at all. I can’t turn my head off and yet can’t come up with any answers. I'm on a treadmill, but I don't know where I got on, and I don'[t know how to get off. I wonder where it’s all going to end.

No matter what I do, no matter how hard I try, it isn’t enough. I give and I give and I give as if the well has no bottom. After awhile, I give up. What’s the difference? Nothing I do changes anything. I am physically and mentally exhausted. I feel as if I am carrying the world on my shoulders. I just can’t do it anymore. I've reached a point where I've lost interest in everything. My emotional energy is drained, and I feel hopeless and alone. I am filled with self-pity and remorse. Getting through each day is a chore. Getting out of bed and getting dressed is an overwhelming task. What’s the use? It’s just not worth it. I give up, and withdraw into an isolated existence.
The first step I need to do in order to make my life manageable is to accept that alcoholism is a disease. It is a disease as cancer is a disease. It is a progressive disease. It gets worse by stages. It is a fatal disease. It can be arrested, but it cannot be cured.

When he thinks of an alcoholic, he thinks of the stereotype of the Skid Row bum --- out of work, no family, cruddy clothes, grubby beard, brown bag hiding the bottle, wiping windshields of cars for change to buy more gut rot.
What he fails to realize is that some alcoholics are out of work; some are working. Some are unskilled laborers and some are high corporate executives, doctors, lawyers, you name it. Some are Irish Catholic, some Protestants, some Jews, white, black, old, young, brilliant, slow.

Other stereotypes include, “He never drinks during the day,” “He doesn’t drink every day,” “He doesn’t drink all that much.” The fact remains that it doesn’t matter when he drinks, how much he drinks, or what time of day he begins. What matters is whether he loses control once he takes the first drink. And as the disease progresses, he will drink earlier and earlier in the day. And once he starts, he doesn’t stop unless he’s plastered.

It’s a disease. He’s a sick person. He doesn’t choose to behave the way he does. It’s the chemicals in his system that dictate his behavior. It’s not his choice. It’s not a sign of moral weakness. He has a compulsion over which he has no control. He doesn’t choose to be an alcoholic. He may choose to take a drink, and if he isn’t an alcoholic, after the first one he would have a choice about whether or not to have another. But he doesn’t have a choice. After the first drink, the compulsion sets in, and even though he may be able to control his drinking for a certain period of time, the compulsion eventually takes over and he drinks until he can drink no more.

He is not a happy person. Alcohol is a depressant. So, regardless of the real or imagined reasons he uses in order to justify his drinking, he is miserable much of the time, if only because of the effect of the chemical. The initial feeling of freedom that allows him to be the life of the party inevitably gives way to depression.

An alcoholic is someone whose drinking causes a continuing and growing problem in any area of his life --- and someone whose drinking is causing a continuing and growing problem in my life. It is seen as a problem by me long before it is seen as a problem by him. But it will be seen as a problem by him too, eventually.

I try to keep in mind that if he were dying of cancer and his disease was causing him to be obnoxious and to get an alter-ego, the obnoxious behavior and alter-ego would make me upset and angry, but I would not hold him responsible for his cancer. The same thing holds true for alcoholism. I hold him responsible for his behavior. I have thought of him as a ******* when he drank himself blotto, and then I blame him for his ranting and raving. By doing this, I am enabling him. I have blamed him and not the disease, made aimless threats, become extremely emotional, used self-pity and self-deception, and tried to control his drinking.

Alcohol is an anesthetic. Before the development of more sophisticated anesthetics, it was actually used for this purpose. It insulates one physically and emotionally against pain. The pain that I feel when someone is hurtful to me goes unfelt by him when he is drinking. I need him to hurt…to hurt so badly that he can feel the hurt through the alcohol. He needs to hurt so badly that he will cry for help. I don't know what it is that will make him hurt badly enough. I thought that perhaps he had reached that point when he had his emotional breakdown, but evidently not. How much more hurt can he be in than that? What will it take?

It must not have been his “bottom.” He will hit his bottom when the repercussions of his behavior are too overwhelming for him to ignore.

And I must allow him to take responsibility for his behavior; the consequences of his actions. Which causes conflict in my head because it’s contrary to my nature…I try to be a loving, supportive, caring, nurturing person. But I need to let him endure his own suffering. I can’t cushion that for him, no matter how much I love him, no matter how hard it is. If I want to make him feel better because I am a good person, I am helping to kill him. It’s as simple as that.

i know that he waits for reactions from me. If I feel hostile, even if my words are kind, he feels the hostility and uses it as an excuse to drink. He is like a child in this regard. If I am truly compassionate and he does not feel the tension coming from me, he will have no excuse. Of course, this doesn’t mean that he’ll stay home and remain sober, but it does mean that he cannot use me as an excuse for his drinking. He has to admit, if only a little, that he is doing it for his own reasons, and not because of something that I have said or done.

What hard work it is for me. But it will save me a lot of grief.

Any behavior that allows him to use me as an excuse for drinking enables his disease. Crying, berating, inducing guilt --- all give him an excuse to drink. He promises he’ll slow down and control it for awhile, but he can’t, and my attitude plays into his need for a drink.

If I truly want him to get well, it is important that I do nothing to get in the way of his drinking. If I really care, I will not find ways to get him to drink less. Any action of mine that causes him to control his drinking will only prolong the life of the illness. He is going to have to get really sick before he gets well. The faster he gets really sick, the greater the chances of his recovery.

So I will not hide the bottles anymore. I will not water down the liquor. I will not discourage him. I will not try to get him to make promises…promises that end up being empty ones anyway. Hell, maybe I’ll encourage his drinking. Because he has to stop by and for himself. He has to reach the point when the pain of drinking is greater than the pain of not drinking. Only he can know when that point is.

So I try to concentrate on myself. I stop spinning in his orbit. I will not revolve around him. I will not react to him. It’s unhealthy and it’s destroying me.

My days will not be focused around his comings and goings. Pleasing him will not be all-important. Pleasing him has been the most important thing to me --- I don't want to displease him. Since pleasing him becomes more and more difficult as he gets sicker and sicker, I have tried harder and harder. As a result I have been getting sicker and sicker. I have gradually lost my sense of worth. I have not determined for myself what my worth is, so when I am put down by him, I lose a sense of myself. And it hasn’t happened overnight. The erosion process has been so gradual that it has basically gone unnoticed. I have unwillingly allowed the disease of alcoholism to decide my value as a human being.

I need to face up to what’s really happening. Cinderella is only a fairy tale. My Prince Charming will probably puke in my glass slipper.

The energy I use to deny the truth could be put into facing it and not being victimized by it.

If I accept the fact that he will probably come home late and drunk, I am prepared if he does, and pleasantly surprised if he does not. If I deny the probability, even though he swore to me that he wouldn’t do it again, I will be shattered if he disappoints me again. I have, in effect, set myself up. It is unfair to blame him.

I need to give up fantasy (not hope, but fantasy).

I need to accept the fact that he is suffering from an illness today and that chances are he will still be sick tomorrow. I will only approach the subject with him when I am not angry and when he is not drinking. He may not listen, but hopefully it will plant a seed. Maybe I will leave some literature or a book around for him to look at and read. I will not preach, but look at reality. He’ll probably continue to deny, but I'll no longer be part of his denial system. And a suggestion will have been made as to where the help is…when he’s ready to ask for it.

When we go out, he’ll do what he does and I'll do what I do. I'll concentrate on having a good time for myself. I'll not watch him, and will not try to control the amount he drinks. It’s not my problem. He’s an adult, and as an adult, he must make that decision for himself. The only decision I have to make, as far as he’s concerned, is who drives home.

I use the Serenity Prayer often. It is so powerful. I repeat it many times a day; it contains a wonderful message.

Grant me the Serenity to accept the things I cannot change,
The Courage to change the things I can
And the Wisdom to know the difference.
Living one day at a time;
Enjoying one moment at a time;
Accepting hardship as a pathway to peace.
Taking, as He did, this sinful world as it is, not as I would have it.
Trusting that He will make all things right if I surrender to His will;
That I may be reasonably happy in this life, and supremely happy with Him forever in the next.

Instead of spending the whole day worrying about what kind of shape he’ll be in when he gets home, I'll tell myself to start worrying at 10:00. It takes a lot of energy to decide not to worry at all when you’ve conditioned yourself to worry. It may take awhile before I can just say, “I’m not going to worry at all.”

And when I start worrying, I'll ask myself: “Whose problem is it?” It’s important to know where somebody else ends and I begin.

Whether or not he gets home safe is not my problem. I have no control over that. If I decide he should be home at 6:00 for dinner, that’s my problem. If I believe his promises, that’s my problem. If he doesn’t show up for dinner, that’s his problem. If he’s hung-over the next day, that’s his problem. It belongs to him. He can have it, and I'll let him have it. I have enough that belongs to me. I don't have to take any more on. When I start to worry, I need to remember to ask, “Whose problem is it?”

Fear is my constant companion. Some of my fears are rational, some irrational. Some of the things I am afraid of are real. Some are imagined. Some I can identify. Some are nameless. Some are healthy and necessary; others are destructive. I need to sort out the fears that are working for me, and those that are working against me. I can only live in the day. I cannot concern myself with tomorrow. I must focus on getting through each day one at a time. If, for reasons I don't fully understand, I am more afraid of living without him than with him, I accept this as real for now. I don't deny my feelings or judge their appropriateness. I accept that I am afraid. To deny the feeling is to waste energy. I have no energy to waste and cannot will the fear away. It will return. I need to admit to myself, “Yes, I am afraid. Now what am I going to do about it?”

I have to learn to count on myself. Learn who I can depend on and who I can’t. Learn to have few expectations from others. If I have few expectations, I will be less vulnerable. I won’t hurt as much. The less easily hurt I am, the less fearful I will become.

I will learn to control my own life forces. I will not give him the power to control how I feel. I will have choices.

Anger is a powerful emotion. It can be turned inward and can eat my guts out, or it can be turned outward and I can risk his wiping the floor up with me. It’s a gruesome choice.

If I truly accepts my AH as sick, I will be less angry at him. I will still be angry at my situation, but not at him. To deny these real feelings is to con myself. They won’t go away. Anger is a form of energy. I know from physics that energy once created cannot be destroyed. It can, however, change form.

I have to be flexible. Planning ahead is nice, but I can’t count on it coming off if he has been involved in my plans. I can be sure of following through only if I am only depending on myself. He may offer to help with something, or to do something for me, but if I think of it as more than an expression of positive intent, I risk disappointment with its subsequent feeling of hurt. If I take it as a personal rejection, or anger at the unreliable son of a bitch, I turn my feelings outward. I need to consider that the person I have the most reason to be angry at is myself. After all, I set herself up.
I know better. Every time I'm angry because I've expected him to act sober, I'm really angry at myself.

Sometimes I can let things go and sometimes I can’t. I know that expressing my feelings are helpful to me. Expecting a reaction from him only leads to disappointment, but I still need to express my feelings. I assert myself because I have rights and I have feelings.

I'm learning, finally. It’s taken years, but I'm finally getting it. After a gazillion times of him coming home late and drunk. After a gazillion times of letting him have it when he does so. How could he do this to me again? I was looking for sympathy and understanding, which I deserved…but my anger was not justified. The only person I am justified in being angry at is myself. I set him up every time. I knew that I could not depend on him to come home on time. He’s an alcoholic. So to let him have it was unfair of me. It was as if I wanted an excuse to vent anger at him because he’s sick. He can’t help being sick. I have a right to be angry at my situation – it’s a stinkin’ lousy ****-poor situation. And I'm really angry at my situation. I'm jealous of all the others who have wonderful marriages, with husbands who don’t drink and stay away from their wives to get drunk. Lots of people seem to be married to Paul Newman. Lots of men I work with can’t wait to get home and spend time with their wives and never go out without them. I'm angry at that. I'm angry because I'm jealous. But I can’t displace my anger. I can’t place anger on him that doesn’t belong to him. I don't end up feeling better about myself when I do that. My thinking has become confused, too. I must be able to separate what is from what I want it to be.
The truth is that I am in a difficult situation. He is sick and it is unkind to be angry with someone who is sick. He cannot be held accountable for his behavior. Yet I still get furious. I'm really furious at the situation in which I find myself, and it is nearly impossible to separate the situation from the person. After all, the chemical is self-inflicted. No one is doing it to him, but him. But I know that’s not realistic because compulsion is part of the disease. Nevertheless, if he didn’t pick up the ******* drink with his own ******* hand, he would not get ******* drunk, and I would not be living in this ******* god-awful, pain-inducing situation. My anger is real. I am really, really pissed about it. We could have that Newman marriage – we could have it and we did have it and he’s withholding that from me and I crave it so badly and why why why isn’t it important enough for him and why why why doesn’t he love me enough to want to give that to me, and to him and why why why aren't I good enough and why why why does he not love me enough?

The discharging of it is difficult for me. I can’t deny that it exists. I need to find ways to channel it in ways that will be good for me. I hope that eventually it will leave me and I will start to feel more serene within myself, and more compassionate towards him.

Feeling protective toward him isn’t good for him. It enables him. I don't pity him, as it’s not healthy for him. I don't want to be over-concerned, because that’s not good, either. Compassion and caring are good. That’s what I'll dwell on. Compassion carries with it understanding, but does not make us weak. Pity weakens. To feel pity would be to say that he can do nothing about what he is, so I, who am above him, feels sorry for him. That’s not how I feel. To feel compassion is to face the difficulties that he faces, but also offer him the opportunity to do something about it. Over-concern suffocates him and makes him push me away. It gives him another excuse to drink.

The concern that I have for him can be interpreted as caring, and gives him options as to what to do about things. He will gain strength through love, provided that the love is freely given. Both he and I become richer. No disease has the power to combat the power of love. It is the most powerful weapon in the world. If I love him, no matter what he does, I become a mirror through which he can look at himself. If I do not reject and am not hostile, but just continue to love him, he cannot use me as an excuse. I do not have to pretend that I accept behaviors that are unacceptable, but I love him as a person. I do not pity him, nor will I protect him from himself. I care about him, too much to help him be weak.

I am the only one who can be responsible for my happiness. I cannot depend on him to do that for me. I am in charge of myself and my happiness or unhappiness. I allowed him to make me happy or unhappy. It is not automatic. Once I accept this, his inconsistent behavior will have less of an effect on me. He will please me or disappoint me only if I choose to allow him to do so. The power over me belongs to him only if I give it to him.
I will now call my own shots. I will no longer try to understand the thinking of him when he is drunk I will no longer ask him to think as if he were sober. I will now ask myself to think as if I were sane.

Healthy relationships allow for breathing space. They do not smother. In order to build a healthy relationship, at least I will be healthy.

Once I believe I am a person of value, I will be able to offer those things that I need. I will learn that the only way to be sure of receiving love is to give it away. The only way to be sure of being understood is by offering understanding to others. If I care, others will care for me. As I sow, so shall I reap. I don't have to react to what is given to me unless I choose to, unless it is good for me. I can act as well as react. I can get back what I give. I can have the power.

Alcoholism is truly a disease of paradoxes. It defies logic. The opposites of the usual rules apply. What would make sense in a normal situation doesn’t in the alcoholic situation. It’s all mixed up. But I'm finally starting to get it.
One night, I read him this poem. I wanted to know what he thought of it. But my mistake was attempting to do this when he was drunk. I should have known better. I did know better, but did it anyway. Foolishness. Now I wouldn’t even try it. I thought…the poem’s so logical…how can he defy logic?

Positively Negative

We drank for happiness and became unhappy.
We drank for joy and became miserable.
We drank for sociability and became argumentative.
We drank for sophistication and became obnoxious.
We drank for friendship and made enemies.
We drank for sleep and awakened without rest.
We drank for strength and felt weak.
We drank “medicinally” and acquired health problems.
We drank for bravery and became afraid.
We drank for confidence and became doubtful.
We drank to make conversation and slurred our speech.
We drank to feel heavenly and ended up feeling like hell.
We drank to forget and were forever haunted.
We drank for freedom and became slaves.
We drank to erase problems and saw them multiply.
We drank to cope with life and invited death.

Did he comprehend? Of course not – he was drunk. Drink for strength? Of course not, he’s already strong and doesn’t need strength. Rather than focusing on those parts which may have made sense to him, he just completely disregarded them in order to stress the parts which he disagreed with. It made me so sad at the time – that we were at a point where we are incapable of discussing an interesting poem because he needed to avoid what it was saying. But now I know…he wasn’t going to process it because he was incapable of doing so. His mind was not working properly because his cells were obliterated by the booze. So it was ridiculous that I ever made the attempt.

Now I know to not go there. When he’s been drinking I have no desire to have conversations with him, because he is incapable of holding any sort of meaningful conversation. When he’s drinking, I'm not interested in communicating, because it’s a waste of time. And chances are he won’t even remember the conversation…at least not accurately.

So it’s up to him. I love to talk to him --- it’s what I miss the most. If he misses it and wants it back, he knows what he has to do. It’s out of my hands. There’s nothing I can do about it, other than pray that one day we will get that back.

So thank you all, for your wisdom and advice. I value it all, and I listen. I've been lurking on here for years prior to posting....listening...listening...listening. You're the best.

And my apologies for the length!
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Old 06-07-2011, 07:55 PM
  # 2 (permalink)  
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I don't quite know what to say just yet, apart from: What an amazing post!!! Thank you!
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Old 06-07-2011, 08:25 PM
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Wow!! I see so much of much of my struggle...the internal battles I have had within myself for years... in your post. And I see alot of wisdom too.

So now...what great things are you doing for YOU that doesn't revolve around HIS alcoholism??

Big huge hugs...
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Old 06-07-2011, 08:33 PM
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same planet...different world
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Wow ... is right!
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Old 06-07-2011, 09:25 PM
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Longest post ever. Wow! But excellent content, good recovery, and well written. I want to write a longer one now, but I just don't have the resolve. ;-)


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Old 06-07-2011, 09:39 PM
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same planet...different world
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I think it's well thought out and evocative
and I highly doubt there's
anyone on this forum who cannot relate to SOMETHING
in this.

SHows how we're all individuals...and yet we share so much the same.
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Old 06-07-2011, 09:45 PM
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Old 06-07-2011, 09:58 PM
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What a wonderful post. So much I can relate to, so much to learn, so eloquently presented. I'm sure I'll read this several times so everything sinks in. Thank You!
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Old 06-07-2011, 10:06 PM
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Words seem inadequate| - all I can say is "Thank you."
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Old 06-07-2011, 10:22 PM
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You have taught me so much in what you've learned. I just learned that someone in this can be a virtual ventriloquist, since you so eloquently voiced my thoughts.

Excellent piece of work here.

I am humbled and strengthened by this.

Blessings on your journey...
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Old 06-07-2011, 10:45 PM
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Wow! You wrote my story. And many others here too, I'm sure. I am saving this for future reference; you captured it so perfectly. Thank you.
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Old 06-07-2011, 11:12 PM
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An amazing example of how it was, what happened, and how it is now. You should speak at conventions. Thank you so much for sharing.
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Old 06-07-2011, 11:50 PM
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Old 06-08-2011, 01:12 PM
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This was beautiful. It gave me chills!!! Love it Thanks
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Old 06-08-2011, 02:52 PM
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Is that poem yours?
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Old 06-08-2011, 03:46 PM
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Thank you all, for your kind words. You all actually deserve the credit, for I've learned it all through you (and lots of books!) Sorry for the length...I didn't realize how long it was until I was done,

And Jazzman - no, that is not my poem...I should have specified that. I would have given credit if I knew who had written was written on a little sheet of paper and I had it in my journal - don't remember where it came from.
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Old 06-08-2011, 05:15 PM
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I am speechless and am going to print this out. It tells the story so well.
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Old 06-08-2011, 05:27 PM
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Originally Posted by JACKRUSSELLGIRL View Post

I am speechless and am going to print this out. It tells the story so well.
I already printed out a copy. The first time I read it, I cried because those are the thoughts rattling around in my head. I have read it several more times since then and I am hard pressed not to have a box of tissues handy.
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Old 06-08-2011, 05:31 PM
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Completely agree! This really does tell it like it is. The specifics of each of our stories may differ, but this post illustrates the all too pervasive familiarity we all have.
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Old 06-08-2011, 06:06 PM
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