Blogs


Notices

The More Things Change, The More Things Stay the Same

Old 03-20-2015, 09:59 AM
  # 1 (permalink)  
Member
Thread Starter
 
Florence's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Midwest, USA
Posts: 2,899
The More Things Change, The More Things Stay the Same

I'm fine, living my life, concentrating on kids and work and house stuff, trying to get my finances in order (an ongoing struggle). Last weekend, I got a text from my ex-sister in law asking if she could come over and talk to me and see DD3. I hadn't seen her in over a year, and easily hadn't seen her a year before that. I thought about it, but curiosity got to me and I finally said okay. I was a little conflicted about it, but I had suspicions that XAH isn't doing as well as he let on, and XSIL and I have always been friendly and low drama when we talk. Frankly, if she wanted to tell me something about XAH, I wanted to know whether or not what she had to say affected DD3.

So she visited last night. It was a pretty pleasant visit, but she did confirm some of my suspicions about what's going on at XAH's parents' house, where he lives.

She confirmed that while he got a job last October, he was fired less than a week after his start date because he was caught using on the job (a job caring for disabled adults!) and failed a drug test. He and his parents agreed to keep all this a secret from me. I had suspicions it wouldn't last just based on history, but no confirmation. She also said that they have no idea what XAH does all day alone in their basement, and that their mother is extremely depressed and fighting with their dad, and their dad feels completely locked into caring for two mentally ill family members that are incapable of caring for themselves. It's all deeply codependent and unhealthy, but their family is so invested in keeping all this a secret that they don't seek out outside help like counseling, psychiatry, or support groups, and prefer to live in denial of the severity of their situation. XAH pretends to go to job interviews every week, and his folks keep giving him gas and cigarette money so he can do that, and they all pretend they don't know he's lying and spending his money on other things. XSIL was super upset about it and realizes how crazy it is. It has deeply affected her relationship with her parents because she can't stomach their enabling behavior.

At some point I said something about dysfunctional family structures in reference to our FOOs, and she was like, "I never thought about my family as dysfunctional before!" Really? Anyway.

While she was talking, I really encouraged her to get into Al-Anon or counseling to have someone else to talk to about these issues. I feel fine talking about life stuff with her, but I know I'm not the most appropriate person as her brother's ex. Also, she's a classic adult child from a dysfunctional family, seeking out bad relationships with emotionally unavailable people, including several alcoholics, issues with depression and self-medicating herself, and I think if she's struggling with all this, she needs help from a qualified professional. I kept reiterating to her that I was able to move past the anger and confusion with a lot of counseling, time, and distance myself, and learning to live my life by taking on my own problems and not adopting other people's issues at the expense of ignoring my own. She seemed surprised and a little wistful at how well I was doing and how Not Angry I was about it, like she wanted it for herself too.

What she revealed is weird and sad, but they pay child support on time and I don't particularly care what he does as long as DD3's visits are 100% supervised, support is paid, and she comes home happy, clean, and rested, and they are and she does. For now -- clearly this situation is not tenable in the long-term.

But all this is just to say that my absence or presence in their family system made no difference. XAH is a disaster, his parents are covering it up, it's bad for everyone it touches, and it's been this way despite 20 years, loads of counseling and rehab, and personal and professional disaster. Lots of people come to SR afraid that after they move on their exes will suddenly find happiness and sobriety with someone else, but I can say from experience in the three years that we've been apart (two separated and one divorced) that all my ex did was find other enablers, and that they are now experiencing the kinds of insanity that I lived with when I harbored and enabled addiction in my home by choosing to harbor and enable his addiction in theirs. Addiction has a really unfortunate inertia, and anymore I just advise friends and family to get out of its way or prepare to be bowled over.
Florence is offline  
The Following 29 Users Say Thank You to Florence For This Useful Post:
AliWProk (03-20-2015), amberly (03-20-2015), BunnyNest (03-21-2015), CodeJob (03-20-2015), davenport (03-21-2015), desertgirl (03-20-2015), FireSprite (03-20-2015), Fluffer (03-20-2015), Gonnachange (03-20-2015), guava (03-20-2015), happybeingme (03-20-2015), honeypig (03-20-2015), hopeful4 (03-20-2015), HopefulElle (03-21-2015), HopefulinFLA (03-20-2015), Katchie (03-20-2015), kudzujean (03-21-2015), ladyscribbler (03-20-2015), Liveitwell (03-20-2015), marie1960 (03-22-2015), Needabreak (03-20-2015), readerbaby71 (03-20-2015), Refiner (03-21-2015), Shining~Again (03-21-2015), ShootingStar1 (03-21-2015), Sikofit (03-20-2015), SparkleKitty (03-20-2015), theuncertainty (03-21-2015), tootiredwife (03-22-2015)
Old 03-20-2015, 10:25 AM
  # 2 (permalink)  
Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2015
Posts: 113
[QUOTE=all my ex did was find other enablers, and that they are now experiencing the kinds of insanity that I lived with when I harbored and enabled addiction in my home by choosing to harbor and enable his addiction in theirs. Addiction has a really unfortunate inertia, and anymore I just advise friends and family to get out of its way or prepare to be bowled over.[/QUOTE]

This is a great statement and great advice. I'm sorry things for your ex aren't working out because it seems to still have an affect on you and, of course, DD3. But your perspective is terrific.
amberly is offline  
The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to amberly For This Useful Post:
AliWProk (03-20-2015), Florence (03-20-2015), readerbaby71 (03-20-2015)
Old 03-20-2015, 10:56 AM
  # 3 (permalink)  
Community Greeter
 
hopeful4's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: USA
Posts: 13,566
Blog Entries: 10
You are doing great and have your focus where it needs to be.

XXX
hopeful4 is offline  
The Following 5 Users Say Thank You to hopeful4 For This Useful Post:
AliWProk (03-20-2015), CodeJob (03-20-2015), Florence (03-20-2015), ladyscribbler (03-20-2015), readerbaby71 (03-20-2015)
Old 03-20-2015, 12:33 PM
  # 4 (permalink)  
Member
 
FireSprite's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2012
Location: Florida
Posts: 6,784
Blog Entries: 1
Is it bad that I did a little dance at my desk reading this part?

Originally Posted by Florence View Post
She seemed surprised and a little wistful at how well I was doing and how Not Angry I was about it, like she wanted it for herself too.
Not because I'm being snarky toward your XSIL, but HOW GREAT is it that your recovery literally shows like that?

Sounds like you opened her eyes/mind in ways she maybe wasn't anticipating & gave her lots of food for thought that she didn't expect. The best part is that you weren't on a Mission To Change Her Mind - you were just Being You.
FireSprite is offline  
The Following 9 Users Say Thank You to FireSprite For This Useful Post:
AliWProk (03-20-2015), amberly (03-20-2015), CodeJob (03-20-2015), Florence (03-20-2015), honeypig (03-20-2015), ladyscribbler (03-20-2015), readerbaby71 (03-20-2015), Refiner (03-21-2015), theuncertainty (03-21-2015)
Old 03-20-2015, 01:29 PM
  # 5 (permalink)  
Member
Thread Starter
 
Florence's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Midwest, USA
Posts: 2,899
Sounds like you opened her eyes/mind in ways she maybe wasn't anticipating & gave her lots of food for thought that she didn't expect. The best part is that you weren't on a Mission To Change Her Mind - you were just Being You.
Hey, that's a great compliment. Thank you!
Florence is offline  
The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to Florence For This Useful Post:
FireSprite (03-20-2015), LifeRecovery (03-20-2015), Refiner (03-21-2015)
Old 03-21-2015, 07:59 AM
  # 6 (permalink)  
Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 1,452
What a perceptive post, Florence.

Addiction has a really unfortunate inertia

I've never thought of it that way, but it is so true.

ShootingStar1
ShootingStar1 is offline  
The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to ShootingStar1 For This Useful Post:
Florence (03-23-2015), ladyscribbler (03-21-2015), Refiner (03-21-2015)
Old 03-21-2015, 11:02 AM
  # 7 (permalink)  
Member
 
NYCDoglvr's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: New York, NY
Posts: 6,247
It's wonderful to get confirmation that our lives really are getting much better when we stop dragging an alcoholic around with us. Congrats on your progress.
NYCDoglvr is offline  
The Following 3 Users Say Thank You to NYCDoglvr For This Useful Post:
Florence (03-23-2015), HopefulinFLA (03-21-2015), ladyscribbler (03-21-2015)

Currently Active Users Viewing this Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off




All times are GMT -7. The time now is 08:21 AM.