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Old 07-15-2011, 10:05 AM
  # 21 (permalink)  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cyranoak View Post
It drive's me ****ing nuts every time I read in a thread that somebody, newbie or not, actually believes you can love and/or control somebody into sobriety, or that somebody will find sobriety simply because of the love of a spouse, parent, children, or The Lord.

Good Lord-- as a species are we really that dumb?
Cyranoak,

It is hurtful to me, to hear you calling some of us dumb. If your a was your daughter, you might understand a bit more, of how we wish our love could reach them. Unconditional love may not be what you feel for your wife, but it surely would be what you felt for your daughter. Because at the bottom of all these fears, is the main fear that they will die. and we cannot help but try any means possible.

Some people have a lot of faith in the power of love. You can cure lonliness with love. You can cure a lot of things with love. These ones you deride, maybe they need time to realize that it is a disease, and accept that they cannot cure a disease with love.

TWYWALTR,
chicory
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Old 07-15-2011, 10:13 AM
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Originally Posted by Tuffgirl View Post
Hhhmmm...with all due respect, KittyP, I didn't read it that way at all. I suppose we all have our own subjective interpretations (of this post and the concept of unconditional love) but what I got out of this is the idea of influence vs. control. I wanted influence in my marriage. I didn't have any because its impossible to have influence with someone who is addicted to a substance. The substance rules. So I took the idea of "influence" to the nth degree and it became control. I got very controlling with my husband and his drinking...make threats that I didn't follow up on, threw my own tantrums, was mean and harsh and judgmental...all under my own denial of what "having influence" really meant. For a period of time, I was desperately trying to control his behavior to control my own emotions - I was looking outside of ME and thinking if only he would (fill in the blank) then I would feel better. If he really loved me and our family, he would stop this craziness. He didn't stop when I demanded it, therefore I mistakenly believed he didn't love us. I was wrong about that. He couldn't stop because he wasn't ready to make the commitment to do whatever it would take to stop. That choice had nothing to do with me or love or anything else.
Wow Tuffgirl. That was so articulate and such an accurate description for me too. Thank you!
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Old 07-15-2011, 10:17 AM
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chicory, I will freely admit that I used to believe that about love. For 15 years I walked that walk. I will also freely admit that I effing dumb all of those 15 years. You can't love/control anyone to change. They will only change if they choose to.

I was dumb and in pain when I came here. In fact that is the reason I came here. I now have a nice shiny new toolbox and some skills on how to use those tools and I am less dumb.

Progress not perfection.

Your friend
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Old 07-15-2011, 10:29 AM
  # 24 (permalink)  
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You can love a person, anyone, unconditionally and not enable or control or fall under the spell of having to "fix" them.

Loving a person unconditionally simply means that you love them as a child of God and you can see them with the eyes of compassion.

It does NOT mean you have to be responsible for them or sacrifice yourself for them. In fact, I would argue the opposite: that the love many of is feel is VERY conditional: the condition being: "I don't like you the way you are, so I'm going to kill myself trying to change you so that you are worthy of the only kind of love I'm willing to give." Unconditional love is "I love you no matter how you choose to live your life just as I choose to live my life." It's like that poster that was popular in the 70s:

I do my thing and you do your thing.
I am not in this world to live up to your expectations,
And you are not in this world to live up to mine.
You are you, and I am I,
and if by chance we find each other, it's beautiful.
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Old 07-15-2011, 10:33 AM
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Is the love unconditional if you walk away from them? If you say I can no longer be part of the craziness? If you say it hurts more to stay than to leave?

I really don't know. I walked away but I still love her. I just love me more now.

BTW, these are serious questions. I would really like to hear other people's opinions.

Your friend
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Old 07-15-2011, 10:37 AM
  # 26 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by m1k3 View Post
Is the love unconditional if you walk away from them? If you say I can no longer be part of the craziness? If you say it hurts more to stay than to leave?
Absolutely
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Old 07-15-2011, 10:38 AM
  # 27 (permalink)  
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Beautiful, SoloMio...

I share your thoughts but I could not have written it as beautifully as you did.
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Old 07-15-2011, 10:39 AM
  # 28 (permalink)  
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Hi Mike

I guess I never believed that love could cure them, for I had two parents who were alcoholics, and their love for us or ours for them didn't make one whit of difference. only when they suffered consequences did they stop.

As I said, it takes time for some of us to realize that loving someone unconditionally is not going to cure their disease.

I came here in pain as well, and the support I get here makes the difference, and I learn so much about caring for myself.

I wonder sometimes if knowing they are loved unconditionally by someone can make a difference somehow. Maybe at their lowest points, they can remember that they are loved, and that gives them something helpful. maybe not?

I would not want anyone coming here for help to be embarrassed to share their feelings. To be called stupid, simply because they don't know about addiction, and what helps or not, seems a bit over the top. I nearly left because of the lack of empathy from some members. Guess after hearing the same things over and over again, they lose patience , and are not able to reach out that helping hand. they reach out with a slap sometimes-lol I do believe that they want to help, almost always.

hugs, chicory
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Old 07-15-2011, 10:52 AM
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chicory Thank you for sharing. I had an AF. I guess when it came to my wife I really thought that I should be able to cure her or lead her to a cure. I gave up on my father and I wasn't willing to give up on her. Not until I realized that I had given up on myself.

Hugs back at ya.

Your good friend,
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Old 07-15-2011, 12:27 PM
  # 30 (permalink)  
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I like to think that I love my AH unconditionally but I am not sure that is true. It takes a pretty self aware, healthy person to love unconditionally and I am not being honest with myself if i thought I was that person. I still love him very much. I love the father that he was and continues to be. I love the husband that he was. I love the compassionate, honest, responsible person he is. I love his sense of humor. I just cannot live with his behaviors. I tell him I love him every chance I get. I know those are just words but I really do mean them. I want him to know that I still love him, even if he is pushing me away or we have no contact for months. I think that when a person is so controlled by this disease it is important that they feel that someone still loves them. I do not tell him that to try to manipulate him or change him into sobriety. I know that can only come from himself and yes "The Lord" because I know that is his HP. He does not believe I love him because of some of my actions and words when I have been angry at his unacceptable behavior. I can see how he would feel that way.
I recently told him I still loved him, I just need to love him from afar. It is healthier for me. And I have had to move further away because recent contacts have been toxic to me. I love myself enough to recognize that and have taken action to protect myself. If he asked me today if I loved him the answer would still be yes whether he is drinking or not. But if he were to ask me to move back in the answer would be no.
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Old 07-15-2011, 12:36 PM
  # 31 (permalink)  
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jamaicamecrazy, I agree 100%
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Old 07-15-2011, 12:37 PM
  # 32 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by m1k3 View Post
Is the love unconditional if you walk away from them? If you say I can no longer be part of the craziness? If you say it hurts more to stay than to leave?

I really don't know. I walked away but I still love her. I just love me more now.

BTW, these are serious questions. I would really like to hear other people's opinions.

Your friend
I think only you can answer that question. I have two friends who are Alcoholics now. To be perfectly honest - one I am more loyal to than the other. I don't feel bad about this, these are my feelings.

If you say you love your children unconditionally but not your wife, there is nothing wrong with that. That is how you feel. My ex was an alcoholic and I can say that I love him unconditionally - but I can't say that about anybody else that I've been with and I was with another person for 7 years!

My ex was an addict and I still loved him, but he was desperately trying to control me, so I left. I told him that I wouldn't let him control me. We try to remain friends, but he is still all over the place and so it is hard.

I don't have to be with him to love him. My way of loving him is offering his family the support to get him help. I pray for him, I tell him I care, I'm here for him as a friend.

I'm reading a book about love and the author describes a love that endures time as an Oasis in the Desert. When something truly comes from your heart it is not sacrificing, it is sustaining! It keeps me passionate and human.

Panther
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Old 07-15-2011, 12:41 PM
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mik3, I sometimes think I love my RAH unconditional but how can I if I judge him so. But you can still love them and not be with them. I think we all are here because we love ourselves and are learning how to take care of ourselves. I also know that it will hurt more to stay than to leave if my RAH chooses to pick up again.
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Old 07-15-2011, 12:42 PM
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I love my AH and I will always love him and I believe that is unconditional. As for living with him and continuing our marriage I am not able to do that.

What I think it comes down to is that is too difficult for me to be with someone that doesn't love me unconditionally. Life is too precious to not be with a person who is looking out for your best interest as well as their own.

I don't think my AH can do that. Maybe that is part of his disease, I don't know. After all, my AH is probably not looking out for his own best interest if he is too consumed with looking out for when he can get a drink.

It has taken me a long time to realize that I still do love my AH. Facing my own issues and stopping my reactions to the alcoholism has led me to accept I can love my AH and not be responsible for him.
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Old 07-15-2011, 12:43 PM
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I think the word everyone is sticking on is unconditional. No one seems to be having an issue with love.
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Old 07-15-2011, 12:49 PM
  # 36 (permalink)  
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and their love for us or ours for them didn't make one whit of difference.
I have observed this phenomenon between my AW and our Daughter. AW has been devoted to Daughter since she was born, and I can confidently say AW loves her more than anything or anyone. Even so, when Daughter begs AW to quit drinking, AW gets angry and hostile.

I can understand her not wanting to give up alcohol for me, but she won't even stop for the person she loves the most.
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Old 07-15-2011, 01:01 PM
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Not only am I a recovering codependent, I'm also a recovering Pollyannish moron.
Another Cyrano quote I'm saving. Word.
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Old 07-15-2011, 01:12 PM
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Originally Posted by m1k3 View Post
Is the love unconditional if you walk away from them? If you say I can no longer be part of the craziness? If you say it hurts more to stay than to leave?

I really don't know. I walked away but I still love her. I just love me more now.

BTW, these are serious questions. I would really like to hear other people's opinions.

Your friend
See. In my perception of love, there is no particular measurement: more or less doesn't exist. The example is that infinite bucket of love you have for each of your children. The amount is the same. The way you love them so that they can feel it may be different because our children are different. There is no 'more or less'. You didn't run out of all your love after your first child was born. You found out there was lots more in that bucket when the 2nd came along. And the 3rd and so on.

So, in loving someone else unconditionally, that means there are no demands or expectations. We just love them for who they are. Pretty simple. We understand each person has limits, just like we do.

I'm not physically in the same place as exABF. I don't love him 'more' because I understand the situation now. I just love him better.

This is my own self-improvement module.

TWYWALTR.

Also, about the 'loving them so they can feel it' part: I think a lot of us have made the mistake of trying to let our As "feel it", when they really couldn't feel ANYthing due to their addiction to their DOC.

Last edited by skippernlilg; 07-15-2011 at 01:14 PM. Reason: added a piece to my piece for some peace.
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Old 07-15-2011, 01:53 PM
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If I'm honest I do not know how to love another adult (with exception of maybe parents) unconditionally.

If I'm really honest I do not know how to love unconditionally period. I can't associate unconditional love with my xah or any other romantic interest or even friend. My love is all about conditions and trying to get needs met like was described up thread in the Fable of Two Co-Dependents. I grew up being told I was loved. I grew up being shown love and affection without neglect or abuse. I grew up very mistrustful of love none the less. I was afraid then and I'm afraid now. I don't know how that happens for sure but I do know that I love my children unconditionally (nothing they do could result in me not loving them) - but I don't think I have been emotionally healthy enough, nor did I ensure a healthy environment, for them to really feel that unconditional love. That sense of worth, perfectness, and security in the center of their beings. They would tell you I love them (if they could articulate such a thing) but I do not think they 'feel' that security of unconditional love. They ask me to often if I love them. It isn't how I treat them because I love them and tell them so and am tender and attentive - but it is about my own internal health (or lack of it) that keeps them off center. We can't trick kids. If we are insecure in our internal selves - they will be too. This is what propels me to further and further my own recovery and this thread is something really great and useful to me.

ETA: I deleted some further rambling because it barely made sense even to me, lol. This thread gives me lots to ponder.
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Old 07-15-2011, 02:29 PM
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To me, love is the one little four letter word that got me sucked in over and over again. Such a simple word that held so much power over me. Over my intellect. In that stage I allowed my heart to do the job that only my brain was designed to do...think.

I do not believe that there is such a thing as loving someone unconditionally, as we humans always have have expectations of another. That includes children, parents, lovers and friends.

Just my two cents.
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