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Feeling releived about AH's arrest

Old 02-22-2012, 02:12 AM
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Feeling releived about AH's arrest

It's been a while since I've been on here, but the past five days have been such a roller-coaster that I felt the need to head over to where people know what I'm talking about. Right now I'm on partial bedrest and am not supposed to be sitting in an upright position for a lengthy period of time -- reclined or standing is fine, but they're trying to keep the pressure of the nerve. So AH offered to get our son from his bio-dad for visitation during this time...which I honestly didn't see a problem with since his drinking had declined considerably, for the most part. When he has money I knew he was stopping by the liquor store on his way home (about six blocks away), but I never imagined that he'd be drinking on the way to get him. Let's just say that the events of the past several days have reminded me in a very definite way that there is no reasonable limit with alcoholism.

It's generally a 2 1/2 hour drive to and from the drop point for our son -- and on Friday he was gone four hours before I got a message from my ex saying that he never showed up. AH had the phone, so it took several hours for me to piece together what happened...DUI (.24 BAC on the low end), open container, crossing into the other lane of travel, and then on into a snow bank. Luckily he was in a sparsely-traveled area, and no one was hurt.

After I finally got all of this news, I suppose I should have been furious with him, but all I felt was relief. Relieved that our son was out of harm's way, that no one had been hurt, that even property hadn't been damaged -- and relieved that he got arrested.

I had a really, really hard time pinpointing why I would feel this way about the last one until I got to visit him 48 hours after his arrest. He looked tortured, and very much like a caged animal. The first words out of his mouth were, "I'm going to AA. I need help, and I'm never doing this again." His hearing was today, where he requested that he be enrolled in an alcohol treatment program for part of his sentence, stating that he has way too much at risk to continue with this life. He has me, our 6-year-old son, our 14-month-old daughter, a baby on the way, and four older kids (the youngest of them hits 18 this summer).

I know that it's really easy to seek recovery when something bad happens, and then go back to it when you're not "caught" anymore, but I can't help but feel hopeful at his response to this. It's not the first time he's been to jail, not the first time there have been alcohol-related legal issues, but it is the first time that he's been ready to admit that it's a problem and he needs help. I can only hope that he will continue to be committed to recovery once he gets out. He will be released about one month before baby is due, but that will give him two months where he can focus on recovery and can't have a drink no matter how badly he may want one. After that will be two years' probation, where even entering a liquor store will land him back in jail, and a year with an ignition interlock device on our van.

So...suddenly I'm a single mom for a couple of months, taking care of a 1-year-old when I can barely move and also being my own sole means of financial support -- and even though I feel totally emotionally overwhelmed, it still seems like a positive thing. Maybe he'll stick to recovery and maybe he won't, but at least I'm not wondering when this is finally going to happen, and if baby is on time then he won't even miss that. I also think that this might finally lead to me setting a boundary -- I never, ever want to have to go through this again. It seems like he's sitting behind bars, but I'm the one out here dealing with all the backlash from friends, family, and my ex, who is convinced that I knew my husband was drinking while intending to transport our son. Maybe I should have known, but I didn't. No more jail, ever...or prison, since that's probably where he'd be heading with another conviction.

And...despite the length of this one, I guess there's not really anything specific I'm wanting answered from anyone here, I just really felt the need to get it out somewhere. I've told myself over and over not to ever hope for his recovery, but right now I'm finding it impossible not to hope. His substance abuse evaluation seems to have also hit him in the gut -- he's realizing just how badly he's abused his body, and that he won't live until his kids are all adults if he keeps on like this. He's considerably older than me, and one of his big concerns has always been leaving me with minor children to raise on my own...praying this lesson sticks with him, and truly is the bottom he's so desperately been needing.
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Old 02-22-2012, 02:40 AM
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Oh yes, and very relieved that he got arrested WITHOUT me having to call the police, or intentionally unscrewing a headlight in the van or something so he'd get pulled over. I've thought about it many times, but didn't want to give him any way to say that the consequences were my fault...they're all his, and right now he's having to accept that there really is no one else to blame.
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Old 02-22-2012, 05:13 AM
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Hello wywriter,

I'm very relieved to hear that no one was hurt! I'm also very familiar with the feeling of relief when the addicted loved one gets arrested.....sad but true.

Hopefully, this will be an event that turns things around for your husband, but I also hope you won't be too disappointed if it is not.

Peace and joy to you and all of those beautiful children! HG
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Old 02-22-2012, 09:51 AM
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Yeah, that's why I told myself I wasn't going to get my hopes up, because anyone can say anything when they want a more lenient sentence, when their visitor discussions might be recorded, or if they're truly miserable in the moment and mean it then. But...it's REALLY hard not to hope; right now I can look in his eyes and he's 100% sincere about recovery. I guess all I can really do is wait, and in April I'll get to see if that sincerity stays or if it wavers once he has his semi-independence back.
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Old 02-22-2012, 12:01 PM
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Originally Posted by wywriter View Post
right now I can look in his eyes and he's 100% sincere about recovery.
It's really easy to LOOK sincere about something, but the hard part is actually DOING IT, long term, and consistently.
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Old 02-22-2012, 01:08 PM
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I hope this turns out well for you. Take care of yourself and those precious little ones first.
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Old 02-22-2012, 03:40 PM
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"Right now I can look in his eyes and he's 100% sincere about recovery."

No, you can't. There is one thing, and one thing only, you can count on-- actions. And, furthermore, actions that are consistent over a long period of time-- a year or more.

You are setting yourself up for yet another fall.

My two cents.

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Old 02-23-2012, 12:07 AM
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Stress on the "right now" there ...I've been around enough recovering alcoholics to know that right now doesn't in any way dictate what will be there in any number of weeks, days, or even minutes from now. The chances are slim, but at least it's a chance...and, as horrible as it may be, I feel some reassurance that he will go back to jail if he starts drinking again in the next two years. I say WILL because, though I didn't want to call the police initially, I don't have any problem reporting a probation violation.

Yeah, I've been trying to wait for the actions before hoping...and, even then, I've told myself over and over that I will not hope. Easier said than done. That said, no matter how well he works his program, I know that I will be on my guard probably for years before I'll accept that he might stay sober. With my mom, it took me about three years of her sobriety before I started to believe it -- 9 years sober now, and now I trust it enough to leave the kids with her and to let her drive when we go places together.

That said -- the one boundary I've finally been able to set. One more DUI and he's prison-bound, and I won't be waiting for him through all this again.
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