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Is it just me?

Old 06-24-2014, 10:27 AM
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Is it just me?

It's been awhile since I posted, but I had a fight with my ABF last night. Which is big, because we rarely fight (mostly due to me avoiding it like the plague).

Ever since his DUI I've practiced distancing myself. Trying not to judge, but letting him make his own decisions. It seemed to be going well for a while. He was humbled and really seemed to want to change. But since he's lost his license, it's been different.

He stopped smoking pot, which has been great, but he's started buying alcohol again (he had stopped doing that right after the DUI). Anytime he goes to a DUI class or AA meeting, he comes out saying he needs a drink. Sometimes he tries to get out of going to AA meetings, by saying he just wants to spend some time with me, but I tell him he should go and we can meet up afterwards. I have less tolerance for him drinking and I'm definitely fed up with his whiny attitude about it. Which is not necessarily helpful, but I'm trying not to enable.

So last night we had an argument where all of his frustration came out about my lack of empathy and distancing myself, etc. That I haven't been recognizing his achievements in sobriety and am just judging him. That he feels like I'm just waiting for him to get his license back and then I'll dump him. Then he threw in some a**hole comments criticizing me for not being ready to move in with him and "take a small step forward" despite me asking him about what a general picture of our future would look like. Even pulled the "in AA, which you want me to go to, it's all about living day to day so how can you expect me to think any further than that?" Which I get, but at the same time, I'm not asking him to plot down a concrete future. I'm just asking if we have the same basic ideas for what an "ideal future" would hold and then reality will change it. (I'll spare you the details of my half of the argument. It's mostly me being overwhelmed by a lot of changes in my life. And reiterating how much it hurts me to see him drink. Blah blah blah.)

I'm posting because I'm wondering if this is normal. Is this him not surrendering fully to his alcoholism and taking it out on me? Or is it me? Is it me pulling out of our relationship? Last night it felt like I wasn't supporting him enough when he really needs it, but now I feel like it's not just that. That it's so much more than that, but it's easy for him to take it out on me. Because I'm the only one to fully witness the consequences of his addiction. I'm enforcing consequences by encouraging him to go to AA and choosing not to hang out with him when he's been drinking.

It's my first real relationship and I can't tell if this is addiction related or a fundamental relationship problem. I'm sure probably both, but I figure some of you might have similar experiences. I'd love to hear them.
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Old 06-24-2014, 10:35 AM
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I've heard that an alcoholic's emotional development stops at the time they start really drinking. He sounds immature, and also like he is only going through the motions of recovery to appease you and the legal system. Buying booze after an AA meeting is not the action of someone who is in real recovery.
Good for you not taking the bait over his guilt trip about you moving in. That's pure manipulation and for someone not truly working a program his "one day at a time" talk strikes me as quacking.
All that stuff is normal in an alcoholic relationship, and I think that your healthy instincts are guiding you away from this man as you realize that you deserve better. Addiction IS a fundamental relationship problem, and you have a right to say "this isn't working for me" without justifying your actions or thought process to anyone.
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Old 06-24-2014, 10:53 AM
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He is immature. He is five years older than me and it is slowly becoming clear that his mental age is younger than me. I just want to shake him sometimes and tell him that he has an amazing girlfriend who loves him and if he could just get his act together it could be great. But I'm afraid he won't. It's so frustrating.

Luckily for me, my mom is the queen of emotional manipulation. So while I feel extreme guilt, I know how to stand my ground against it.
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Old 06-24-2014, 10:59 AM
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If he is drinking after DUI and AA meetings, he doesn't have any
"Acheivements in Sobriety" because I don't think they give such awards to drinkers.

Sounds like he has a lot of growing up to do and needs to accept that he is the one lifting
the bottle to his lips. You have nothing to do with it.

And you are still with the man because?
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Old 06-24-2014, 11:07 AM
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Originally Posted by idledreamer View Post
He is immature. He is five years older than me and it is slowly becoming clear that his mental age is younger than me. I just want to shake him sometimes and tell him that he has an amazing girlfriend who loves him and if he could just get his act together it could be great. But I'm afraid he won't. It's so frustrating.

Luckily for me, my mom is the queen of emotional manipulation. So while I feel extreme guilt, I know how to stand my ground against it.
You shouldn't have to "stand your ground" against emotional manipulation. Sounds like this history with your mom is why you are accepting this unacceptable behavior.
This is not what a healthy relationship looks like. It is simply what you are used to. I also grew up with a lot of unacceptable behavior in my family of origin. For many years I gravitated toward that in adult relationships because that's what I was used to. A big surprise to me has been learning that everyone in the world is not abusive, manipulative, mentally ill or a substance abuser. Just the ones I was attracted to.
Working on that now with Alanon and individual therapy.
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Old 06-24-2014, 12:05 PM
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He's not in recovery. As someone else said on another post yesterday -- sitting in an AA meeting doesn't make you an RA any more than sitting in the garage makes you a car.

It sounds to me like he's not interested in getting sober, but he still wants pats on the back for being sober. He's not sober. You don't get points and pats on the backs and attaboys for doing for a couple of hours what normal people do every day of their lives.

I'm just asking if we have the same basic ideas for what an "ideal future" would hold
I think he's showing you exactly what his basic idea of the future is: Him drinking, and you telling him it's OK to drink.
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