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How do I encourage my husband?

Old 10-16-2001, 12:31 PM
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SKEPTICAL
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How do I encourage my husband?

Hello Everyone.
I am new to this site and very pleased to find it. I have been told by a number of people that I should attend Al-Anon to answer my question but I guess I feel I want to have the support without my husband knowing I am seeking it right now. I can tell by reading all the threads that everyone is supportive and caring, I just hope I can find some direction. Here is my deal; I have been married for four years. My husband has been relying on booze for all his emotional needs since he was in high school. He loves me more than anything in this world and knows he has a problem. Last year he told me that he needed to quit, but after 6 weeks of sobriety he decided he would prefer to cut down instead. Obviously he was unsuccessful in cutting down and now drinks almost every night. For the first time ever since I met him, I told him last week that I was not happy with his drinking. He is a wonderful intelligent warm etc. person when he drinks but is irritable and impatient when he doesn't. I told him I don't even like being with him when he isn't drinking. I did not ask him to quit or give him an ultimatum, but he decided he needs to quit. He doesn't want me to leave and he understands I am not happy. Furthermore, he said he wants me to leave if he is not successful in quitting. The problem is that within 24 hours of this decision he decided he wants to try to cut down again. I reminded him that he was unsuccessful last time but ultimately the decision is up to him. I have already decided that when he realizes he can't cut down, he will have to try to quit. Then if he can't quit, i will have to leave. I am heartbroken about this because I know how much he loves me and I know how much he wants to make me happy but I also know how addicted he is. He does not want to go to AA and obviously I can't make him. What I guess I want to know is if anyone has any advice on what I can do to help him be his best self. Right now I feel confident he cannot give up drinking and that I will break his heart when I leave. I am also in my head thinking I am going to give him until I graduate from the MBA program (3 years from now). I don't want him to know I am pessimistic but I am sad for him that this fate most likely awaits him. Does anyone have any suggestions?
 
Old 10-16-2001, 01:57 PM
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Hello skeptical, welcome to the recovery forum. There is no instant cure. But he can stop. Whay you need to do is find a hospital where you live and talk your husband into the detox for three days. At the end of the three days he will be alcohol free. Now how he will remain so is another story. You could get in touch with the intervention people. I am told that they come to your home and intervene.

http://www.intervention.com

I am praying for you and your husband.

Just for Today-------I am Sober
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Old 10-17-2001, 10:31 AM
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HI Skeptical...
I'm curious about why you don't want your husband to know you're seeking support? Are you trying to spare his feelings? He's not sparing yours. Let him be the sneaky one. Tell him about this board and march off to those meetings with pride.
What does he have against AA? It's not for everybody, but your fella has already shown that all-on-his-own is not working for him. He needs to try something... AA, NA, counseling. Recovery comes in a lot of flavors.
If as you say, he has been relying on booze to fill his emotional needs... then it seems plain that he needs SOMETHING ELSE to fill them. He needs to figure out what is supposed to be in that big empty hole he keeps filling with swill. HE NEEDS HELP FROM A GROUP AND/OR A PROFESSIONAL.
But first, he needs to dry out. Listen to Pernell.

Smoke
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Old 10-18-2001, 10:53 AM
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Thanks, Girls, I really appreciate your input. He hasn't had a drink since Saturday (so tonight will be his 5th night sober.) I don't think detoxing is his problem, its keeping motivated. He was sober 6 weeks last year and just got bored so he decided to go back to drinking. I know he needs professional help learning to deal with his emotions but he is stubborn and doesn't agree. A few years ago I convinced him to go on anti-depressants but as helpful as they were they were only supplementing his drinking so when he said he thought he would stop taking them after more than two years of taking them I wasn't concerned. As for why I dont' want him to know I am getting support, it is because he is very hard-headed. He seems to think that if I am reading self-help books or talking to others then my words and advice are not my own but what people have told me to say. He is able to blow off what I say when he thinks some "stupid" people put it in my head. Thus I want to keep all excuses for disregarding what I say out of the picture. I already know he is going to drink again because he said he is just taking time off, so I dont' really care if he drinks again tonight or in a year because I know until he decides to really quit he cannot make progress, and as long as he is not making progress, our relationship is not making progress. I guess the question I have is whether I am wrong to let him try to cut down and then find out he can't and have to quit. I refuse to give him ultimatums so I have it in my head that I will encourage him to quit but not threaten to leave until I am packed and ready to go. I know in my head that I am giving him 3 years to get sober and until then I can only tell him that I am not happy when he drinks and let him decide what he is going to do. In that three years, i am also determined to live my life and do my own thing (not wait for him to determine my future) The question I have is am I wasting my time? Should I tell him now he has to quit and the next time he drinks leave? I have read enough threads to know you girls will say only I can decide when I have had enough, but I would appreciate your opinion on what you think will and will not work.
 
Old 10-21-2001, 01:12 PM
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What a coward your husband is. He is afraid of your self help books and boards like this and al-anon. He says "stupid"? No, "experienced" is what we are.
The addict in my life, Dino, was very fond of the idea that he was unique in his suffering. He could not be compared to "addicts" (which he wasn't) or called a theif when he stole or regarded as a liar when he didn' t tell the truth. He has come a long way, but he is still afraid of nar-anon. He warns me about these crazy people who become addicted to 12 step programs and cannot think for themselves. Okay, there are zealots and whackos in any group. But for the most part we're just people comparing notes and helping with a shoulder when we can. It's not telling you what to think or say... it's just letting you know you're not alone in your thoughts... or perhaps encouraging you to say what's on YOUR mind to your addict. The most radical ideas you'll come across are that a) you don't have to put up with addictive behavior and b) it's not your fault and c)you don't deserve it.

If you read my post on TeresaB's thread, you will have noted my alarm over your "3 year plan". I hope I have misunderstood something. Addiction is a complex thing. That makes recovery complex and often difficult and lengthy. Nobody says you have to walk out on him the next time he takes a drink. But you may need to reevaluate, each time his behavior harms or disturbs you, whether the perks in this relationship outweigh the drawbacks. Don't hold yourself to that 3 year timetable. If he becomes intolerable next week, perhaps you should split next week.

I haven't heard tell of or met an addict that could not be described as "stubborn". You can ask him to commit to recovery, but you can't make him. And you are very wise not to make ultimatums that you are not prepared to back up.

Storytime...
I was very close, at one time, to a man who had had a rather violent past that involved gangs and drugs and other scarey things. It became his habit, in those old days, that whenever he entered a building he would survey carefully and note the escape routes, in case he ever had to use them. When I knew him, those times were long past, but I could still see him marking an escape route with his eyes whenever we went to a new place.

This is me urging you to plan an escape route to this living arrangement.... even if you don't think you'll have to use it or want to. Always know where it is.

Smoke

[This message has been edited by smoke gets in my eyes (edited October 21, 2001).]
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Old 10-21-2001, 01:48 PM
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Wow, you are pretty vehement that three years is too long! Everyone who knows my situation agrees with you but I didn't expect it from this group...thats pretty telling to me. Eek. Well, I guess I should explain it. The reason I feel I should give him three years is that I feel soooo guilty about leaving him. I am his life. Not just emotionally and socially (he has few friends) but financially. I flew out here to Colorado and picked out and bought our first house. We were living in his parents house in Boston for a brief period before this. He doesn't make enough money to live on his own right now, much less afford these house payments. i asked him last night what he would do if I left and he said go back to Boston to move in with his parents. This kills me. he isn't mean to verbally of physically, I just don't like this life anymore. I am so sick of coming home everynight to him drinking. I am sick of him not wanting to go anywhere or do anything, and worse, I am sick of him not wanting me to do anything or go anywhere wtihout him. He is totally possessive and needy and has no life of his own. I would be more than happy to sign the house over to him but he couldn't afford the monthly payments. I guess I just wish I would at least be able to know he can continue to live here and not have to go back to his parents. Thus I say three years so that he can hopefully find a better job or at least make more money doign what he is doing. I guess I just feel very very guilty because I am his everything. I especially feel guilty because he hasn't changed... he is exactly who I married. I have changed adn I feel I am abandoning him. I just don't know how to leave him without hating myself.
 
Old 10-22-2001, 05:22 AM
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Like I said, I write my posts and read them to see what I would tell me. Obviously everything I said makes it clear that I am an enabler and am doing him no favors by staying with him. He needs to learn to take care of himself and I am allowing him to put that off... or never do it.

HOWEVER, this is why I am confused. My husband has wealthy parents who were very controlling. They denied who he really was and made it clear who they wanted him to be. He has a BA in economics and a BS in biology along with a Masters in Information Technology. Part of my friendship with him involves me encouraging him to be what he wants to be and not what his parents want him to be. Furthermore, i try to make a point of not telling him I don't like who he is choosing to be because I want him to do his life outside of trying to please others. Well, this encouragement has lead him out of Boston into Colorado where he is now an apprentice to a man who builds log homes. He loves his job and works hard at it but he doesn't make enough money to support himself.

I know that if I leave him now he will have to move back in with his parents in boston and end up back where he started. I don't want that to happen. I want to stay with him three years to give him time to make more money and be able to stay here if I leave him and continue on this developmental stage of his life.

Sigh, now I guess after reading this post I would tell myself to seek counseling. Ugh. THere are no easy answers, are there?

Thanks for listening, I really appreciate your concern and advice.
 
Old 10-22-2001, 07:01 AM
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I take it, then, that the 3 years has something to do with the length of his apprenticeship and your school plans.

It's noble of you to be so supportive of his career goals. Probably 3 years is not too long to stand by someone who is trying to build a business or learn a trade. However, putting up with alchoholic behavior is another matter., Think of the damage he can do to his body/mind and your heart in that time.

Dino's story has some elements of similarity to your husband's. His parents are not rich, but they certainly had other aspirations for their son than to be a musician. He never got so far as earning those degrees. The irony is that he is really quite gifted as a composer, and had a good foothold in commercial music, but sabotaged himself with drug use.

I too felt guilt about "abandoning" him. He had lost all his friends and my friends were becoming barely civil to him. He only had other losers and me to hang out with. I feared for what would happen to him if I let go. What DID happen, was he finally got some help.

Do you ever watch "the Simpsons". One of my very favorite quotable quotes comes from an episode when "Marge" said to "Lisa".... "Most women will tell you that you're a fool to try and change a man... but those women are QUITTERS!". We laugh at the futility and absurdity of this idea... but a lot of us believe it in our hearts. We don't want to be a quitter.

Your post makes me think that perhaps, though you married your husband knowing where all the warts were, you thought he might change if you gave him a loving environment in which to do so. He didn't, and now you fault yourself, saying that it is you who have changed. I doubt that you really have, except to give up the naive supposition that all toads can become princes if you pucker up hard enough.

He can change. He has to WANT to. You can't love him into it. And where will he find the motivation if he believes his life will go on as usual... he'll be warm, dry, fed and loved... no matter what he does?

Read your posts some more. You have all the info you need. I urge you not to cling to that 3 year plan but to evaluate his behavior on a day to day basis. For recovering addicts and for anons... the magic number is not three. It is one.... one day at a time.

Smoke
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Old 10-22-2001, 07:24 AM
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I LOVE the Simpsons! I so totally relate to Lisa and Homer.

Anyhow, your words are soooo helpful, thanks for writing to me. I need to think about the answers to the questions you ask or points you bring up.

Lets see, you are right, I haven't changed all that much. As for my husband, he HAS changed, for the better. When I met him he was on an emotional roller coaster, appearing manic depressive. He would blow up over stupid things and punch doors. He has come soo far since then in that he can now control his temper. Also, when I met him, he was smoking several packs of cigarettes a day. He quit a year after we met. He use to get upset if I said I was flying home because he didn't want me to leave. Now he takes it in stride. When I met him he would get up from the dinner table when eating with his parents and storm out. Now he always sits through the entire thing in good nature.

I think that is what is so hard for me. When I married him I wanted to be that person who helped him through his hard times and encouraged him to grow and become a better person. Now, however, I am tired of being his caretaker. I feel that as much progress as he is making, its like I married a patient and not a spouse. I guess I feel that I have given him four years of my life trying to help him and I am ready to look out for me and not him. I am ready to be done taking care of someone... I want to take care of just me. I guess that is why I say 3 years. I feel that I can make more progress with him in three years and hopefully prepare him for life after I leave him.

I asked him Saturday night what he would do if I were not with him... to be happy. He said he doesn't think about it because I make him happy, above drinking, smoking, all else. Then I asked him what he would do in terms of making ends meet (because he couldn't live this life if I weren't in it) and he said thats why we are a team.

Sigh... its just hard for me because I know that I am tired of taking care of him and I want an equal partner, not a child. But I also love him as one might a child and I want to help him continue improving. I worry that without me he has no true friends, no family who understands him, and he is alone again. I feel what he needs in this world more than anything is to feel loved as he is and I am heartbroken knowing how much it would crush him if I left him.

I guess I say three years because it eases my guilt. I figure I am going to be here going to school anyways, the least I can do is live with him and try to continue encouraging, loving and supporting him until then. And who knows, maybe he will make giant strides and we will be able to work things out (in other words, quit drinking and get his life together.) I agree with you that I should take one day at a time, but I fear if I take one day at a time then each day I will decide I can stay with him one more day. I am setting a deadline so I can build up my motivation to leave him by then.
 
Old 10-22-2001, 08:16 AM
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oooooooooooohhh!!!!!!
I heard that team bit, too. Direct hit to the outrage button! You are a team so he can be dependant on you? Watch football. Teams need to be able to depend on EACH OTHER. Grrrrrrr.....

It sounds like you have taken this boy on to raise, instead of as a partner. It sounds like he's improved a lot, yes, but did you sign on to be his mommy? If he doesn't have any friends it's because he doesn't know how to BE a friend. That's not your fault or your problem. He can bloody well learn. And it's no one's responsibility to be THE WHOLE WORLD to someone else. We all need community. YOU need community... not just the constant drain of a person who doesn't feel the need to pull his own weight emotionally or financially.

STOP FEELING GUILTY!!! You have been generous, forbearing, forgiving, supportive and long-suffering beyond what anybody deserves or should expect. HIs addiction and rotten attitude are NOT YOUR FAULT.

And incidentally... there's nothing wrong with deciding each day to stay another day. A lot of people do it. The empowerment is in the decision, and the ultimate knowledge that you stay because you choose, and not because you have to. But I would encourage you to give yourself PERMISSION to find yourself a happier living situation whenever the burden becomes too much, whether that is 3 years from now, or next week.

Smoke
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Old 10-22-2001, 09:36 AM
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You are absolutely right. Guilt is my biggest obstacle. My whole life I have put other people's needs ahead of my own and I have to learn to put mine first for once. I don't know anyone who would say I should stay with my husband. I feel like a major failure having a marriage seem over in only four years and I feel like I will let down my husband more than he has ever been let down. But I understand I have to get over my feelings of shame and guilt and do what I need to do for me. It feels selfish but I know you are right. I don't think I am strong enough to see his pain right now, though. I don't think I can walk out on him yet without it breaking my heart and filling me with doubts about my decision. You have given me strength of my convictions that I do not owe my husband the rest of my life... or even another day of it. But I guess, the fact is, for today, I am not ready to leave him on his own. Sigh. I need to pray really really hard that God is going to give me a sign to tell me when its time to go.
 
Old 10-22-2001, 10:16 AM
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Well, here's another question.

Is it just a choice between leave, or stay and suffer?

Seems to me, there's a 3rd possibility. He cleans up his act. The man has two degrees... he's not an idiot. He should be able to comprehend that there can be consequences to his actions.

You are right to not give ultimatums until you are prepared to live with the consequences yourself. But when you know that you are... it's FAIR to say "This is minimum acceptable behavior. Behave at least this well or say bye-bye." Then the ball is in his court. He has to decide what you are worth to him. I know that is a very scarey place to be.

Now, this is going to sound like a sexist remark. Oh, heck... it is a sexist remark. Like all such comments, it is a sweeping generalization and deeply unfair to some men, but I haven't met them. Men are not from Mars. They are from the planet Oblivion in a dark galaxy beyond the moons of Emotional Cognizance. It is futile to expect them to know how you are feeling unless you tell them. They will not guess. It doesn't even enter their consciousness to wonder. If you want him to straighten up, you're going to have to tell him so. Flat out. He may or may not do what you want... but at least he won't be able to say he doesn't KNOW what you want.

Smoke
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Old 10-22-2001, 11:18 AM
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Right again, of course. He is definitely from the planet oblivion. I have in the past two weeks tried to spell out what I want from him without accusing him of doing anything wrong or causing him to feel defensive. He has been totally responsive. I told him I want to be more social with other people and I want to go out and not just sit home every single night so he can drink. He was very understanding and receptive but also confused. He doesn't understand why I would go hang out with other people if he is sober. I said I would love to hang out with him if he is up for doing new things but that I need friends and family around me. He isn't like that, he is a loner who doesn't like socializing except once in a rare moment in time. I have tried to explain it to him and he has tried to understand but like most men, he just doesn't understand. Anyhow, I told him he doesn't have to understand why I need friends and family, he just has to allow me to have them. He agrees, but its when I go to do something that he gets confused. For example, I had a day off a few weeks ago and he didn't. I made plans to go hiking with a male friend from work. My husband went ahead and took the day off and told me he wanted to spend it with me alone. When I got upset and said I can't revolve my plans around him he questioned my motives for "preferring" the company of this friend of mine. I tried to explain the point isn't whose company I prefer, its being able to make plans without him being able to change them. I learned this was my fault because what I should have done is spent the day with my friends regardless rather than altering my day to appease my possessive husband. So... that being said, we talk all the time, but I am ready for putting these things into practice. This goes back to my three years. I am thinking I played a part in the power he has over the decisions I make because I allowed him to decide. Thus I think that if I spend equal time re-training him that he cannot make these decisions, we may have a chance. The thing that scares me is that we don't have a sober relationship... we never have. We met in college when I was working 40 hours a week and going to school full-time. My work shift would get out at midnight weekdays and 2 am weekends. I would go to his house after work and we would have some drinks and talk and talk and talk until the sun came up. We never ever went on a real date. After several months of this we graduated and I moved in with his parents in Boston for a lot of reasons... mainly financial. We lived there over a year, I rode into the city for work everyday with his parents and when we got home we had a family dinner. My husband and I would go out after dinner and have some drinks and talk about our day and our stresses and what not. we didn't go to dinner because we just ate and we didn't go to movies because we wanted to talk. We were married while we lived there. Now we live together and work 9-5 but we don't have things we do together. We don't go to movies or to dinner or dancing... we don't go anywhere. My fear is that he doesn't want to do these things. His habit is drinking at night. So my requests of him are huge. I want him to quit drinking, to go out with me, to have friends, to be productive and social, etc. and I am scared he can't do it... or doesn't want to. What if we don't enjoy the same things? I guess that is why I meant that I changed. I don't want that to be our life but it always has been our relationship. I told him all of this and he said he understands and wants to do things with me, but then when it comes down to it we don't do things and there is always an excuse... he had a hard day, we can't afford it, he has to get up early...
 
Old 10-23-2001, 03:28 PM
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boy, do your words really bring back a lot to me. i'm not going to go over it all again but yu can look at my post about my son to read some about life with my ex. i did all those things...the cries, the ultimatums, the promises. i wondered what was wrong with me that he didn't want to be with me and was willing to give it all up for a bottle of vodka.
i left our hometown to attend UC Davis (graduated...BA Fine Arts) and was gone for 2 years. we were divorced, but i was still engtangled in the relationship. i saw him a total of maybe 2 times. when i moved back to this area after graduating i reallized that his alchohol consumption was worse than ever.
he lives in a "shed" right now, and i can't see how he lives the way he does. but he does it because there is no rules, he can drink when he wants, and he has no responsibilities. i had to come to the point of realizing that notheing was wrong with me (getting out to Davis really helped, the isolation from him and the relization that i had something to offer the world...that he was wrong about me)
we can't control the abuser's behavior. we can't change the abuser's behavior. and sometimes detatchment just doesn't work while
remaining in the home with the abuser. i had to think of my safety, and the safety of my three children because my ex would become violent when he drank.
i don't know if this helps any, but i hope it does.
 
Old 10-24-2001, 11:12 AM
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Thanks, Debbie. Everything helps at this point. I have been soo sad and confused and angry for the past two weeks that I have not been able to think about anything else. I am no longer giving him years. I am taking Smoke's advice and taking it one day at a time. I am more upset since I have realized that if I leave him he has to move back in with his parents in Boston. I am sad because I don't want him to have to do that. But I am also angry because I don't know why I am responsible for making his life happen for him. I am confused because part of me thinks he is only 26 years old and now is the time to kick him out and make him take responsibility for his life because every year he lives like this is going to make it harder for him to get it back together. The other part of me thinks he is only 26 and he is going through major life changes right now and just needs support. Then I think about me and how angry I am that he doesn't put half as much effort into meeting my needs as I put into his. I realize that I have to take care of myself because he isn't doing it for me. Then I get confused because I feel he just doesn't know how to give me what I need. I think I have told him clearly but he just doesn't seem to be getting it. Last night I dreamt he kissed another girl and I told him it was over, to call his parents because I was done taking care of him. I was almost disappointed when I woke up and found it hadn't happened. Oh.. and incidentally, he already had an excuse to drink more than once this week... he killed his first elk yesterday and bought a 12 pack of bud and a pack of cigarettes (he has quit twice now... both for 6 months at at time) to celebrate. He asked if I would hold it against him. I said no, he can do what he wants. I meant it because I refuse to babysit him, but I am mentally giving up. The only thing keeping me in the house with him is that if I leave he can't afford to live there and has to go back to Boston. I have been praying for God to tell me what I need to do. I just don't know. Right now I feel like doing things to **** him off so that he leaves me... but I know he won't ever leave me.
 
Old 10-25-2001, 07:49 AM
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Wow, I have to thank you, Smoke. I finally had enough and had yet another talk with my husband last night. I told him I am not happy and I don't think I can live this life another day. I didn't give him any ultimatums or tell him what to do, i just told him what I need to do. I told him I was considering moving back to Minnesota where my family is. He said he would go anywhere I want. I told him I was tired of taking care of him and being at his beck and call. I told him I am tired of asking for his permission to go out with friends and I told him I was tired of coming home every night so that he would have a drinking buddy. I realized that I can call ALL the shots because he needs me more than I need him. For the first time I realized that I don't need to worry about his emotions and his needs because I need to worry about my own. I don't know why I felt I couldn't demand to have my needs met. It was a long argument/discussion, but in the end we ended up on the same page. He now understands that I am going to be his wife and live with him, but that I am going to have my own life.. starting today. I feel sooooo free and happier with him than I have been in years! Thanks for setting me straight!
 
Old 10-25-2001, 09:09 AM
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Hello again Skeptical....

Oh, shucks ma'am, it weren't nuthin'.... Really.

You were ready for something to give. The fact that you were making deadlines (even far away ones) in your head showed that you were just about at the end of your rope. You just needed to give yourself permission to act. It sounds like this was your turning point. I hope it is also your husband's.

I'm guessing you didn't precisely mean that it is no longer necessary for you to worry about his feelings, (because you have to worry about your own). I'm glad you've gotten to the point where you understand that you cannot bend to his desires to the exclusion of your own... that your needs are always as important as his, and sometimes should take precedence. BUT... you have chosen for the time being to stay in the relationship... which always requires compromise. It is wrong that you have been the only one compromising up to this point. But I'm sure you realize that simple give and take keeps relationships strong. For a change you will not be the ONLY one giving.

Now about that hiking trip. While your husband is making these major life changes he's going to be a little extra sensitive, and he sounds like an insecure type anyway. Maybe you could take a girlfriend along instead of spending the afternoon alone in the woods with another man. No sense in pushing his panic button. I tried to put myself in his shoes on that one and came to the conclusion that I would find the situation challenging. As a matter of fact, you could probably aim me at Afghanistan and save a couple of bombs. Just a thought.

Smoke
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Old 10-25-2001, 11:44 AM
  # 18 (permalink)  
SKEPTICAL
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Hmmm... interesting suggestion. I think I need a little more convincing, however. For one, my husband has not yet decided to quit drinking. This means I feel there is nothing for me to support him for. The only change he is really making is understanding that I am going to do my own thing. I think if he attempts to quit, then I may have to be more by his side. For two, he has essentially cut every friend and family member out of my life because he doesn't like them or want me hanging out with them. I suspect this is his way of trying to control me and make sure I don't leave him. I think he fears people will tell me they don't like him or that I will have other friends and leave. Now I have no friends outside of him and I am just now starting to make friends in Colorado. So far this guy friend is my only friend. I hate to not have him as a friend because then I am sitting home wtih my husband while he drinks.
 
Old 10-25-2001, 03:29 PM
  # 19 (permalink)  
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Hi Skeptical. I just read your latest postand I have a few thoughts for you. It seems as though you are still in the mode of feeling it is your responsibility to help him quit drinking should he decide to. and he probably most likely knows you feel that way. it is a convenient excuse for the alchoholic not to take any self responsibility...why should he/she? we're doing it all for them, and killing ourselves emotionally and physically in the end.
Also, your dream made me remember one of my own. I went to the bathroom and my ex-husband was busy washing his hair and he didn't have anytime to listen to me. It was a real wake up call for me because it made me realize that he never had time for me. I was like the begging little lost puppy dog waiting for his attention...which never came, or if it did it wasn't for long and usually reverted back to being all about him.
I used to say when i was in the middle of it all that it would have been easier if my ex would have fooled around on me...but unfortuqntly vodka turned out to be his girlfriend...
at 26 years old your husband is old enough to take care of himself...he just knows at this point that you will pick up the slack. I'm sure others will agree that sometimes when the one hits bottom the fall has to be a hard one. i know mine was.
take care of yourself, and take some time for yourself. and if one guy is your only friend why not get out and make some friends...take a class, go to thelibrary, go to some meetings.
isolation is the friend of codependency.
best wishes, debbie
 
Old 10-25-2001, 05:22 PM
  # 20 (permalink)  
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Skep...
I would never say not to have any person as your friend that you choose. It was the particular (solitary) activity that made me identify with your husbands insecurity.
Aren't you in school? There must be some more people to play with.
I guess you cleared the air some about how it's his clinging that creates the danger of you wanting to break away?

Debbie and Skep...
Your dreams remind me of my reality. Once I caught a box of feather boas on fire and was screaming for Dino and he wouldn't budge from his heap. I managed to beat the fire out with the butt of the fire extinguisher, which wouldn't work. All the time I was screaming for help, all I heard was a disgruntled "what?" from his direction.
Another time I slipped and fell into a wall of boxes full of fabric. There was an avalanche and I was underneath. I had twisted my back and couldn't get out. But he couldn't seem to "hear" me yelling for help. My cat sat with me until he meandered by half an hour later.
Whattaguy.
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