"What Time Will You Be Home?"

Old 01-31-2017, 03:40 PM
  # 1 (permalink)  
Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jun 2016
Posts: 216
"What Time Will You Be Home?"

Sometimes during my recovery from all this, out of nowhere I will have what I can best describe as a flashback to a feeling I had when in the relationship. I continue to focus on my own recovery, however, as time has gone on I have also learned it's important, especially when at times you still romanticize the past, to also remember the things that were, well...not so great.

I left work late today and for some reason it triggered a memory I had that lasted for years. Maybe some of you have had it too. It was the "when will you be home?" syndrome. My exAGF enjoyed drinking at home tremendously but knew how I felt about it. So, when I left her at the house for any period of time that was going to be enough to get some good drinking going on, this was very exciting for her. It took me a while to learn/realize this.

When I was out shopping for a few hours, or working a little late, out of town with family or friends, on a camping trip for a few days...These were all the greatest times as the drinking could commence. No matter how long or short they were, it didn't matter - There was one constant. When the day and rough time of arrival was coming, but not exactly stated, I would start getting texts, more and more frequently, asking me what time I would be home. If I didn't answer, they became more insistent. This was all part of the dance, of the game. Get every hour, every minute, of drinking in before I get home. Some days I would lie about the time just in the hopes she'd stop early. Crazy. Basically, the knowledge of the time was so she get as much drinking in as possible, MAYBE try and clean up the mess, then pass out in bed. In some cases, the drinking was too fun and had to continue after I got back -- I didn't allow enough time or the buzz was just too good. But it was all about a game to get as much booze in as possible and then pass out in a blissful drunk sleep before I got home.

You see, the texts were NEVER about missing me, or looking forward to me being back, to have dinner ready, or give me a hug and a kiss, say how much I was missed, to have me back -- It was just about how much more time she had left to drink at home before I showed up.

Over time, as we all know, we learn to detach from this and just walk away from the drinking. A perfect detachment for me would have been to just proclaim that she should drink as much as she wants, at home, whenever she wants, and don't try and make it a hide and seek game or a binge game when I leave the house, just drink because I know it's happening anyway. But it almost seemed like it was fun for her or some sort of special occasion. Worst part was how I never felt welcomed back from when I'd been away for a day or two. I was the party crasher. The fun was over. It was such a terrible way to be welcomed home after being gone. Welcomed home with disdain, not love.

Anyway, just a reminder of things I do not miss dealing with, and also a reminder for you, to realize this may also be happening, or perhaps something else we can agree on being something none of us miss!
Wells is offline  
Old 01-31-2017, 03:45 PM
  # 2 (permalink)  
Guest
 
Join Date: Jan 2016
Location: Northwest
Posts: 4,215
What a sad, powerful post. I'm so sorry for your hurt.

Wishing you brighter days ahead.
Ariesagain is offline  
Old 01-31-2017, 03:52 PM
  # 3 (permalink)  
Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jun 2016
Posts: 216
Thanks, but a sorry is not necessary - This is all in the past for me now and memories like this are reminders of the reasons that I had to end the relationship. It's important to remember!

Aries congrats on your recovery BTW!
Wells is offline  
Old 01-31-2017, 04:19 PM
  # 4 (permalink)  
A work in progress
 
LexieCat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: South Jersey
Posts: 16,633
Hate to say it, but as an alcoholic, I understand how your wife felt. Unbelievable how selfish we get.
LexieCat is offline  
Old 01-31-2017, 04:32 PM
  # 5 (permalink)  
Member
 
firebolt's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 3,699
Oh Wells - I went through the same realization that - "go, have fun with your friends - stay out as long as you want" was not so much a message of support, but a THANK GOD, I have 6 hours to get WASTED!

Sad..

But, our eyes are open, and I'm so thankful for that.
firebolt is offline  
Old 01-31-2017, 06:25 PM
  # 6 (permalink)  
Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jun 2016
Posts: 216
Lexie, it's okay, I appreciate you saying that and it's so meaningful that you have the capacity to look back on those sort of feelings and feel differently about it today.

Understanding a lot more about alcoholism has helped me a lot, so I don't see these past memories as traumas really. I see them more as lessons on why I was right to end it, as well as why she continued to do it. That's what you do when you love alcohol that much. You get excited about it and look forward to your chances to be with it. So, I understand why she did it, and I also understand why it became more of a drag when I came home from being gone.

firebolt - Sorry you have to know too. But hey, awareness is a good thing. I remember that at some point when the text messages asking when I'd be home started becoming a regular thing, knowing pretty early on that it was never because she just was looking forward to my return. I saw right though it and I remember the text "what time will you be back?" broke my heart a little bit every time, because I knew she was looking to get good and drunk and plan out her day and how much time she had to do it before my key hit the door. Eventually I think I almost became thankful for it. If I left for a baseball game with the guys, I learned to pretty much expect and accept that she was going to be drinking the whole time, and I knew what I was coming home to. It almost became a warning signal to me. But it also sometimes ruined my day or forced me to feel compelled to rush home just because I knew that might stop the drinking for the day particular session.

It's really crazy thinking back to some of the madness and some of the things I tried to do to control it or change it, realizing now that there was absolutely not a thing I could have done any differently to change it at all!
Wells is offline  
Old 01-31-2017, 11:15 PM
  # 7 (permalink)  
Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2017
Location: Boulder, Colorado
Posts: 22
Gosh, can I ever relate to this. Back when I worked in an office that was about a 30 minute commute on a good day, my AH would text or call me every afternoon to ask that I let him know when I was 10 minutes away. Before his drinking spiraled out of control, we'd spend that commute talking on the phone about our respective days. It was nice and something I really looked forward to after a long day. Those calls stopped around the time he started sneaking out of work earlier and earlier every day to drink at home. After that it was a request for a courtesy 'head's up' so he had time to hide evidence. He legit thought 10 minutes was all he needed to wrap up his party, toss the bottles and get convincingly sober. Instead I'd walk in the door and see wine bottles haphazardly hidden and a spouse so intoxicated that he couldn't stand without holding onto something for support.
itsmepoppy is offline  
Old 01-31-2017, 11:43 PM
  # 8 (permalink)  
Member
 
heartcore's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Location: New Orleans, LA
Posts: 985
My wish that I send you is that someday you will have a partnership in which texts asking when you are getting home are motivated by anticipation at seeing you!

We all deserve that!

It sounds like you are very well grounded & have really done the work of understanding & making peace with the past! Excellent processing.

Small things remind us, & sometimes they help us be overwhelmed with gratitude that we are no longer living that story...
heartcore is offline  
Old 02-01-2017, 12:00 AM
  # 9 (permalink)  
Member
 
honeypig's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Midwest
Posts: 11,275
Well, once again, call me Little Miss Pollyanna...

This went on w/XAH too, but until this moment it didn't dawn on me. There were several years where I was running a lot, training for marathons and such, and he'd always make sure I took the phone w/me and wanted me to call when I was getting close to home again. And yes, he'd ask me to let him know when I'd be back from this or that, all the sort of thing you guys mentioned above.

I don't know, there may have been some genuine concern mixed in there, and I'm sure if I asked him, that is what he'd claim it was.

Either way, thanks for the eye-opener here. Kind of like how I used to wonder why he would wait until the very last moment before paying bills--I'd be like "we have the money in the bank, why don't we just write the checks as soon as the bills come in and not have to worry about the due date?" Just recently, I figured out that it was b/c we did NOT have the money in the bank, but only HE knew that (since he was manipulating the finances), and hence a variety of reasons/excuses for not paying the bills until the last possible day.
honeypig is offline  
Old 02-01-2017, 06:27 AM
  # 10 (permalink)  
A work in progress
 
LexieCat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: South Jersey
Posts: 16,633
Once again, nobody appreciates how much damn WORK is involved in being an alcoholic. Hiding evidence, juggling finances...

Seriously, I was astounded at how much less complicated life got when I got sober.
LexieCat is offline  
Old 02-01-2017, 06:32 AM
  # 11 (permalink)  
Member
 
honeypig's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Midwest
Posts: 11,275
Originally Posted by LexieCat View Post
Once again, nobody appreciates how much damn WORK is involved in being an alcoholic. Hiding evidence, juggling finances...

Seriously, I was astounded at how much less complicated life got when I got sober.
Lexie, I often thought that if XAH had used the energy and brainpower he used in pretending to go to meetings, making up topics at said fake meetings, and as you say, hiding evidence and juggling finances, he could have ruled the freaking world! If you add in the acting skills used in appearing sober, which he was really good at, he could have maybe won an Emmy or something, too.

Unfortunately, where you decided it was less complicated to stop drinking, he decided it was less complicated to divorce and keep the drinking. Well, different folks, different strokes...
honeypig is offline  
Old 02-01-2017, 06:49 AM
  # 12 (permalink)  
Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jun 2016
Posts: 216
That was tough for me for a while, but even having a small grasp of the way that the brain works with alcoholism is enlightening. To the outsiders, and those in recovery, the mental and physical gymnastics done to keep the alcohol in play is astounding.

A few reasons I wanted to post this thread were to:

- Remind myself another reason why my relationship was broken and how alcohol became more important than me.
- Allow others who have experienced this to weigh in from either side of the street.
- Help others who maybe didn't realize it see that this was a potential red flag.

Looks like we've done all that here, which is great. Obviously, not great that it had to happen, but it happened, let's deal with it.

Especially early on, with the fog I was in and still come in and out of at times, when I have doubts about if the alcoholism was real or if it was in my head, if I was overreacting, if I was the controlling person I was claimed to be, etc. -- A memory like this pops up, and I remember the way that felt and with the distance and hindsight, I remember that above all, something was definitely wrong. If you are in the middle of a text message or phone call game with someone who is trying to use that information to get as much alcohol consumed as they can before they see you, something is wrong. I can't believe I ever thought that was acceptable.
Wells is offline  
Old 02-01-2017, 06:58 AM
  # 13 (permalink)  
Community Greeter
 
dandylion's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Posts: 16,251
Wells....the further you get away from it....the more "clear" it will all become.
You will be able to see it in the big picture.
Like, standing on the top of the hill and looking at the village below....it looks a lot different than standing in the middle of the village....
dandylion is offline  
Old 02-01-2017, 01:27 PM
  # 14 (permalink)  
Member
 
DoubleDragons's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Posts: 2,805
Wells, it is so funny when these dawning moments become unveiled to us. I have a little vial of perfume I keep in my car. I seldom use it, but I sprayed it yesterday after a workout and it made me think about how much my mother sprayed perfume in the car. She did it for years and we all found it so annoying. I am now realizing that she was probably covering up the smell of her drinking for years this way! Hell, she may even have been drinking it. The revelations come fast and furious sometimes . . . .
DoubleDragons is offline  
Old 02-01-2017, 03:12 PM
  # 15 (permalink)  
Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2015
Posts: 612
Originally Posted by Wells View Post
That was tough for me for a while, but even having a small grasp of the way that the brain works with alcoholism is enlightening. To the outsiders, and those in recovery, the mental and physical gymnastics done to keep the alcohol in play is astounding.

A few reasons I wanted to post this thread were to:

- Remind myself another reason why my relationship was broken and how alcohol became more important than me.
- Allow others who have experienced this to weigh in from either side of the street.
- Help others who maybe didn't realize it see that this was a potential red flag.

Looks like we've done all that here, which is great. Obviously, not great that it had to happen, but it happened, let's deal with it.

Especially early on, with the fog I was in and still come in and out of at times, when I have doubts about if the alcoholism was real or if it was in my head, if I was overreacting, if I was the controlling person I was claimed to be, etc. -- A memory like this pops up, and I remember the way that felt and with the distance and hindsight, I remember that above all, something was definitely wrong. If you are in the middle of a text message or phone call game with someone who is trying to use that information to get as much alcohol consumed as they can before they see you, something is wrong. I can't believe I ever thought that was acceptable.
This is a very interesting post! I never really thought about the "When will you be home?" or "How's it going?" texts...I do know that they have always caused me to be annoyed and anxious...But never really thought about WHY.
Why:
-Because he was checking in to see how long I'd be away (and if it was going to be a substantial amount of time, he would chose to go to his favorite watering hole for the entire duration of my absence)
-It would remind me that I was away from him, that he was probably alone at home feeling sad for himself, and I he would then be on the back of my mind, rushing me home to entertain him/make him feel wanted. (when whatever we were out doing - he was always invited to join us but always had a reason not to participate)
-Or I would alert him when the kids and I were on our way home/already home/etc...and he would "meet us at home" or "be there in 10"....To only arrive hours later but he knew I was home waiting on his return.

It all comes down to control and loneliness /not being happy in his own presence in my situation. And here I had a mental spin on it, making me feel guilty for carrying on with life "without him"

This is a great thought provoking post. Thank you!
thousandwords53 is offline  
Old 02-01-2017, 03:28 PM
  # 16 (permalink)  
Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jun 2016
Posts: 216
More great stuff here.

Part of it definitely comes from the insecurity I think that builds in us when we're in these type of relationships. We're insecure about what our SO is doing when we are not home / with them because we have grown to realize that, 9 times out of 10, it's something bad.

Then, it turns into insecurity about ourselves when we foolishly convince ourselves that the reason they are doing this is because of US, and that IF ONLY we would have done XYZ, this wouldn't have happened.

Realizing that the binge drinking was going to happen regardless of what I did has been helpful in recovery and helped me to realize that I could have kept on fighting, trying to force it to stop, interfering, etc -- But that the outcome was inevitable because the booze was stronger than I was.

I have just had to come to terms with the fact that, as months and years went on in the relationship, those texts and calls and tracking of my whereabouts were way different than any time I'd have done it. I would text or call out of worry, concern, or a genuine want to see her. She would text just to see how much longer she could be with the alcohol BEFORE she had to see me again. Oil and water!
Wells is offline  
Old 02-02-2017, 08:18 AM
  # 17 (permalink)  
Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2014
Posts: 667
Amazing the similarities we learn when we come here. I went through the EXACT thing. Under the heartfelt cover of how much they miss me and look forward to me being back. But yet, insisting that they know my return trajectory.

In the end so they could plan on their party.

I had a contract job that required a I worked 12 hour days 6 days a week. I took that job because she lost her job and we needed to pay bills. ( I dropped out of Med School to take this job).

In about 3 weeks the texting patterns began. Same hours honey...yes...Oh I miss you so.

Blah Blah Blah

I left at 5AM. After commuting, I'd be home at about 7:15P almost to the minute.

When it all came apart, I learn that she could calculate how long it took her to sober up, which gave her how long she could drink and recover. Planned down to the minute.

She was going through 3 bottles of wine a day, X 6 days a week. Hiding it all from me the entire time. Sh was using her unemployment checks to buy the wine.

Now mind you I always had a wonderful dinner waiting for me when I came home. Complete with wine. She made me glorious meals as a reward I thought.

All just to take our eyes off the reality of what they were doing.

During this time, she also found time to find the company of other men. She HATED to drink alone.

Stupid me.......working like a dog to pay the bills through it all.

Man I SO DON'T MISS THAT LIFE!!!!!
Hangnbyathread is offline  

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 06:45 PM.