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I need your help, please

Old 05-30-2013, 06:51 PM
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I need your help, please

I haven't been here for a long time. Briefly, my husband relapsed after a 15 year sobriety two years ago. The ensuing hell was nothing I ever hope to go through ever again. It took a year and $30,000 to save myself and my home from his attempts to take it. We were only married 6 years.

SO

He became dually addicted during the divorce .... both alcohol and vicodin. He subsequently lost his job, his car, all his friends and everything in life he had. He finally surrendered, checked himself into medical detox and has been in an adult recovery center for 4 months. He claims to be sober 4 months so far.

He contacted me (first contact since he went in) and asked to see me. He's working step 4. I know how important step 4 is, (I was very involved with Al Anon through the thick of this). I agreed to see him, to hear what he has to say.

What is the best way to have this conversation that will leave a firm boundary for me, and yet support him in his recovery? I've thought and thought about it....and I know there is a right way and a less right way to do this. Can you give me your best advice on how both of us can get the most benefit from the opportunity?

Thank you in advance...you are my family....I've gotten so much help and support from all of you when I was so suffering.
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Old 05-30-2013, 07:00 PM
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I don't know how to answer this. Are you still hoping your marriage can still work out, or are you just done?

Step 4 is best done with a sponsor, as far as I know. Is he really remorseful, or will he just use it against you now, if you told him exactly how you felt?

Never did a step 4, I'm sure other wise people will come along.

(((((((((((hugs)))))))))))))
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Old 05-30-2013, 07:17 PM
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working ON step 4 is one thing....getting to step NINE, the amends step, is another story. did he SAY he wanted to talk to you and make amends, or just that he wanted to talk? and more importantly, what do you hope/expect to HEAR?

just me, my personal opinion? I think it's too soon. he's been in a rehab/protected environment for four short months...
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Old 05-30-2013, 07:29 PM
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Originally Posted by AnvilheadII View Post
working ON step 4 is one thing....getting to step NINE, the amends step, is another story. did he SAY he wanted to talk to you and make amends, or just that he wanted to talk? and more importantly, what do you hope/expect to HEAR?

just me, my personal opinion? I think it's too soon. he's been in a rehab/protected environment for four short months...
You are likely right. I have no idea what he intends to say and for me...I have no expectation specifically. He also wanted me to come to his graduation in Aug, however I declined that...will be out of town. I've forgiven him...but absolutely don't want him in my life in any capacity. I hope this can just be a closure of sorts. If he has some other agenda...well, it will likely be disappointing for him.
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Old 05-30-2013, 07:32 PM
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Originally Posted by amy55 View Post
I don't know how to answer this. Are you still hoping your marriage can still work out, or are you just done?

Step 4 is best done with a sponsor, as far as I know. Is he really remorseful, or will he just use it against you now, if you told him exactly how you felt?

Never did a step 4, I'm sure other wise people will come along.

(((((((((((hugs)))))))))))))
Absolutely NO I don't want any part of marriage in general again, and also certainly not with an addict. That is a lesson I only had to learn once. I've had no contact with him...through the divorce or after. Only two conversations. So I'm flying blind...no idea at all what he has in mind, or where he is at.
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Old 05-30-2013, 07:49 PM
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Listen, speak, be honest, open and caring.
Hopefully you get the closure you are looking for. It seems he sadly waited too long like most addicts to truly mend a relationship and he may be looking for closure but then again he may be looking to mend things with you as far as relationship wise.
Be honest with him and hopefully forgivness turns to a friendship in an understanding of what it is but bever will be
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Old 05-30-2013, 09:48 PM
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Wow. I would be very leery about meeting him if he said step 4. It makes me think he is still not thinking clearly, or working with a sponsor. If he said step 9... I don't know. I'm probably being judgmental here, but I doubt that he could really get there after just 4 months off all those chemicals. Of course, my AH thought he was thinking clearly after just three weeks. Quack!

Whatever you do, remember to place your own serenity as the highest priority.

Take care,
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Old 05-30-2013, 10:07 PM
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I agree with the others that said Step 4 is not for you.
That is for him to do with his sponsor.
He is either very confused or is looking for something you are obviously (from your posts here alone)not going to give him.

If he has some other agenda...well, it will likely be disappointing for him.
Yeah, I am certain it will be disappointing for him. But, that is part of life.
He is learning to live life on life's terms.
You are more forgiving than I am, still working on that one.


I think I would like to read your story.

Beth
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Old 05-31-2013, 08:28 AM
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To reiterate what others have already said, Step 4 work is not done with you. He does that work with his Sponsor. If you're truly done with this marriage, I would not meet with him to be honest. But that's me. He is trying to get you back in his life, inviting you to his graduation then wanting to include you in Step work. I think the boundary should start there. What will you gain from meeting him if he has another agenda? It will likely leave you upset again, at least in the moment. Maybe the kinder thing to do, if you want to set a boundary with him, is tell him he needs to do his recovery work with his Sponsor. Otherwise, I think he will continue to come up with reasons to contact you. That's not good for either of you.
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Old 06-01-2013, 12:54 AM
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I agree...

...this is a tactic to begin trying to control you again. Anvil is right, too, IMHO. Please reconsider before meeting with him.

Take care,

Cyranoak

Originally Posted by Recovering2 View Post
To reiterate what others have already said, Step 4 work is not done with you. He does that work with his Sponsor. If you're truly done with this marriage, I would not meet with him to be honest. But that's me. He is trying to get you back in his life, inviting you to his graduation then wanting to include you in Step work. I think the boundary should start there. What will you gain from meeting him if he has another agenda? It will likely leave you upset again, at least in the moment. Maybe the kinder thing to do, if you want to set a boundary with him, is tell him he needs to do his recovery work with his Sponsor. Otherwise, I think he will continue to come up with reasons to contact you. That's not good for either of you.
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Old 06-05-2013, 04:47 PM
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Ok Gang;

I did meet with him. We spent about an hour. Mostly he talked about what detox was like (he nearly died...had to detox for 10 days) His journey in recovery. He talked about meeting his shame. How he was so deluded in thinking he could remain sober without support. I mostly just listened.

He wanted to know if I would see him again. I said no....that I was still very much in my recovery process, but wanted him to know I support his sobriety and wish him well as he walks into his future.

As for me, I think it was good for me. The last sight I had of him was so horrifying, it was a comfort somehow to see him not shaking, not with huge red splotches on his skin. It did bring up the deep sadness still with me. Its still so hard for me to comprehend the disease. So hard to watch a loved one in such a state. I'll just remain compassionate with him...but a clear and firm boundary.

I have to move forward...there is no back to go back to
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Old 06-05-2013, 05:06 PM
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Dear MsGrace, I don't think the meeting could have had a better outcome--considering the situation.

wishing peace for you (and him).

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Old 06-05-2013, 05:12 PM
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Originally Posted by MsGrace View Post
Ok Gang;

I did meet with him. We spent about an hour. Mostly he talked about what detox was like (he nearly died...had to detox for 10 days) His journey in recovery. He talked about meeting his shame. How he was so deluded in thinking he could remain sober without support. I mostly just listened.

He wanted to know if I would see him again. I said no....that I was still very much in my recovery process, but wanted him to know I support his sobriety and wish him well as he walks into his future.

As for me, I think it was good for me. The last sight I had of him was so horrifying, it was a comfort somehow to see him not shaking, not with huge red splotches on his skin. It did bring up the deep sadness still with me. Its still so hard for me to comprehend the disease. So hard to watch a loved one in such a state. I'll just remain compassionate with him...but a clear and firm boundary.

I have to move forward...there is no back to go back to

That is inspirational, thank you for sharing that with us. I know I will be there one day too, and hope to be able to handle it with grace as you have. And by one day I don't mean that my stbxah will ever get sober, I hope he does, but that I hope that one day I will be able say no with the dignity you have. Edited to clarify, I am still so angry, so to tell him no with compassion is beyond my ability right now. I would tell him to go **** himself, like he told me to three weeks ago.
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