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Old 08-20-2012, 04:38 PM
  # 21 (permalink)  
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My XAH was blindsided, even though I'd been waving red flags in his face for months. (I thought slamming my rings down on the kitchen counter - and leaving them there - would have been a hint.) But no. He saw and ignored what he wanted to.

I'd definitely have your ducks in a row, and I probably wouldn't bother giving it to him. Save it for yourself - you will need it. I found a letter on my computer I wrote to XAH about 7 years before I finally divorced him... and it was painful. Nothing changed. Not. A. Thing. Nothing in all those years, except perhaps for getting worse.

Be strong. You don't have to live like that.
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Old 08-20-2012, 04:40 PM
  # 22 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by mamabearto3 View Post
Is it just the codependency that makes me think he deserves a warning or at least an insight into what I'm going through? Is it because I'm not taken over by addiction that I am try to rationalize?
I am normally quite outspoken when things are not right, why with this am I so afraid?
Have you told him before that you are unhappy with the marriage because of his drinking? No, I don't think you wanting to give him a warning sounds like codependency, but I'm not you so I have no way of knowing what your relationship is like. Codependency would be hanging on for dear life because you are dependent on him in some way.

I don't know what you are afraid of. Do you have someone you can discuss these life issues with, like a therapist? Have you gone to Al-Anon at all, to try to investigate who you are and why you are married to an alcoholic?

It sounds to me like you want to give him the letter in order to give him one more chance. If so, why don't you just tell him, "I am not happy in this marriage because of your drinking and I would like you to stop." And then see what happens. That sounds like fair warning to me.

Also, could what you are feeling be guilt? Or feeling sorry for the alcoholic?
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Old 08-20-2012, 04:48 PM
  # 23 (permalink)  
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No he knows. He just chooses to think the issues I have are him not helping with the kids in the morning (because he's hungover which I've explained is the issue) or that he's short with them (because he hasn't bought beer yet or because again he's hungover). Even though I've explained (to what I now realize are deaf ears) that if he wasn't drinking those issues wouldn't bother me. I guess sometimes its easier for me to argue that I'm upset that he's not doing his job parenting than talking about the real issue.
I guess by warning, I meant, that I was planning on leaving. I've threatened it before and he will usually calm down for a bit and then the cycle starts again. But the other night I just broke. I can't do this. My son was so upset that daddy chose to stay at a party instead of come home (we were at a BBQ for my husband's baseball league and all the families were going home while the younger and/or single guys were staying on to party more). He chose to stay and drink (we didn't have any beer at home). It just disgusted me. Opened my eyes maybe? That's actually when I came online in search of help. I don't wanna do this anymore.
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Old 08-20-2012, 04:53 PM
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I'm a sahm so I'm dependent on him in that sense. I do have a bit of my money that he doesn't know about (I've had it for years as a emergency fund not necessarily to hide it from him). Enough to start us out I suppose. So in that sense yes I'm quite dependent on him. But I think I'd rather be poor and struggle than have an alcoholic as a parent for our children.
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Old 08-20-2012, 04:56 PM
  # 25 (permalink)  
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Honestly, MamaBear, in my opinion, you should strike while the iron is hot. If it were me, I'd gather my strength and my resources, make the arrangements, and when it is time to go, let him know you are leaving. Don't leave to try to get him to see the light or change, leave for you and your children. If you tell him ahead of time, he'll clean his act up for a while and then, when you are fed up again and leave, he will just say "See? I quit and you left anyway!" Why prolong the agony and give him one more reason to blame you?
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Old 08-20-2012, 04:59 PM
  # 26 (permalink)  
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Good for you!! And thank you for making that sacrifice for your children. I am an adult child of an alcoholic, in my mid-40s, and am still suffering from the effects of growing up in an alcoholic home, as are my siblings. You are doing the right thing for yourself and your kids.
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Old 08-21-2012, 12:30 PM
  # 27 (permalink)  
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mamabear, a couple of books really helped me. One was "Under The Influence" by Milam and Ketchum and the other was "Codependent No More" by Melody Beattie.

If you read nothing else about alcoholism, read Under The Influence.
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Old 08-21-2012, 12:48 PM
  # 28 (permalink)  
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Sounds like you are hoping you moving out and the letter will get him to change. It will not work.
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Old 08-21-2012, 01:09 PM
  # 29 (permalink)  
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Dear mammabear, I think I can feel how really desperate you are to end this whole alcoholism nightmare that you have been living in. I suspect that most everyone on this board have been in your shoes in one way or another.

Are you hoping that this will shake him up enough that he will agree with you that he has a problem and promise to stop? Because, he might do that. That is one possible reaction. But, it doesn't mean that he has the ability to keep that promise--not for very long. Total abstinance with a really vigorous program---sponsor, working the steps of AA, maybe an individual counselor, in addition, etc......is the only thing that can stop the alcoholic progression. The first year is really hard for most and the partner also needs a program of recovery in order to cope.

I guess, I am really asking---what are your true expectations if you give him this letter? Are you able to take another round on the roller coaster if he asks for one?

I am just saying that these are questions to ask yourself. Just be honest with yourself about your true motivations before you make your decision.

When you do decide to go---remember it is your decision, and you don't have to defend it or explain it.

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Old 08-21-2012, 01:32 PM
  # 30 (permalink)  
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I've decided not to give him the letter. Last night he told me he was unhappy (with himself, finances, kids, me, etc) he sounded desperate so I was straightforward with him and told him all of your issues stem from your drinking. You need help. I can't help you, the kids can't help you, you CAN help you. He gave me the party line "yeah I need to cut down, blah, blah, blah" I looked him dead in the eye and said are you willing to get help? Counseling, AA, anything? He said no. That was my answer. I suggested he start exercising to clear he his head. It was what I need to hear. I'm done. I started looking for part time work today. It will be slow going and I will need help. But I know now his choice and I will let him live with it. My kids deserve one strong parent over two weak ones. I'm sad that my marriage will probably end. I'm upset that this disease is stronger than him, me, us. I've never been in a relationship with an addict before. This is new territory for me. But I have enough self respect to not be in a one sided marriage. I will, I'm sure be posting lots of questions. Thank you all so so much for your honesty, your opinions, and you stories. I'm so glad I found this group.

I plan on telling my therapist everything that's going on, but right now no one else. I'm not really sure why. I guess I don't wanna feel pressure if things aren't happening fast enough? Is this wise? Or should I tell someone else? I'm not worried about violence. Its not his nature, but I don't wanna deal with the I'll change I'll fix it as long as I don't have to stop drinking b.s.
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Old 08-21-2012, 01:38 PM
  # 31 (permalink)  
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Good plan to tell your counselor. One thing at a time. Maybe explore with the therapist why you don't want to tell anyone else.

Also, just because you have decided and he has given you an answer, doesn't mean that's it. I will bet money that once he finds out you are serious, he will change his tune. (That doesn't mean he will become willing to get help, it means he will promise you anything to get you to stay.)

L
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Old 08-21-2012, 03:41 PM
  # 32 (permalink)  
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Dear mammabear, we are here for you! I was a single parent of three kids for many years after I divorced their father. I felt the same as you---they needed one happy parent in a loving home, free of conflict. It was hard at times, but, at no time did I ever regret that decision.

By the way, in his case, he never did change!

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Old 08-21-2012, 04:19 PM
  # 33 (permalink)  
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Dont give him the letter. It will be used against you. It won't change his behavior. If letter writing, begging, crying, screaming, etc. worked....well none of us would be here.

I am so sorry. Hugs, birdgurl
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Old 08-21-2012, 05:17 PM
  # 34 (permalink)  
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Great letter and much thought was put into it! My counselor told me we should never assume someone knows what we need or want! I know this is true but l feel sure if you are like the rest of us....HE KNOWS! I think you need to do what makes you feel ok with things but I would expect disappointment. Like others ....he might clean up short term enough to ease things over then right back unless he is ready. I cant tell you the number of times I wrote a letter! Writing does release us but you don't have to give it to him either! Wish I had followed thru earlier when I made threats bc I feel sure he never thought I would....I always let him smooth things over only to return to same or wprse behavior...I truly hope things work out for you! I am still mad but with that anger comes tears! It's just heart breaking!
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