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Is al anon right for me?

Old 10-12-2017, 06:52 AM
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Is al anon right for me?

Hi all. Iíve been with my recovering boyfriend for about 6 months now (I was sort of with him when he was drinking but not really). Heís doing very well, making meetings, service work, everything youíre supposed to do. His long time recovering friends and him suggested I go to Al Anon. I found a meeting near me and Iíve gone to 2 so far, and honestly I donít feel like theyíre really doing anything for me. Iím not even sure I have to go. People in my meeting are dealing with non recovering alcoholics and it doesnít apply to me anymore. What do you guys think? Is there anything that I can do to better understand his recovery, be a little less of a pain for him, to just be his girlfriend?? We go to open meetings when Iím not working, and those I feel like I get more out of them cause I understand what they are and have gone through. I guess I wanna be more sensitive to his recovery. Like not get angry when he doesnít reply to me after heís doing all these different things and is super busy. Thanks
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Old 10-12-2017, 08:29 AM
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It wasn't my cup of tea either. I went to 3 different formats trying to find one that fit better than others. None really set any tones that gave me hope that I was going to gain anything more than coping skills. There was a lot of demographics that were typical that I didn't seem to fit in.

And its modeled after the 12 step program that AA uses. It just didn't set well with me but I totally support that it helps others that aren't the same as me.

I did find it a great place to see that my story of being with an alcoholic was so very typical that if anything gave me the "I'm not unique and this isn't going away anytime soon" perspective to know that I was going to move on without fear that I was missing a tool to help the situation.
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Old 10-12-2017, 08:52 AM
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Theresa.....
You might find these books helpful for the early recovery period.....(which can be as difficult as the actual active drinking period....

"Loving someone in Recovery"
"Everything Changes"
"Living With Sobriety"

You can find these in the library or on amazon.com.....

Have you read "Co-dependency No More"? If not....it is l ike a "bible" in these circles.....
Easy to read,,,and, you will probably see yourself on many of t he pages.....
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Old 10-12-2017, 09:14 AM
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I think you intuitively know whether they are right for you or not. Do you have anything to recover from? Any damage from the relationship? Personally, I think most would benefit more focusing on "living" than " recovering".
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Old 10-12-2017, 09:23 AM
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The recovering alcoholic is on a spiritual journey. The 12 step meetings are a huge part of that.

Supporting that.... becoming open and willing to look at yourself.... finding your own truths about yourself and willing to walk your own path... is a personal adventure. Whether 12 step meetings are a part of that can be your choice. Pray about it. Ask Universe/Great Spirit/God to guide you. Expect to see answers showing up in your life.

People started showing up for me who helped me see life a lot differently than before. They said to pray - no believing required, simply an open heart. They shared how they saw things in their lives and I've had the freedom to explore what resonated with me.

Some of these people were found at Alanon, some at different churches, many in random meet-ups that started happening more and more often wherever I go.

One good friend said all the joy and happiness I will ever want is right outside my comfort zone. I'm so irritated that he's right!

There was a reason I chose to have a relationship with an alcoholic. I'm thankful I had some chaos in my life as a jumping off point. I'm having more fun than I ever thought was possible! .... no guilt or anxiety involved!!
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Old 10-12-2017, 10:23 AM
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Btw... if you get sidetracked and are running late for a meeting, trust that's exactly how your day was supposed to go... show up at whatever point in the meeting with no apologies. It's absolutely great practice for doing this in other parts of life.

I was so used to apologizing -- now I'm able to bring gratitude. I say, "thank you" much more often than "I'm sorry". Thank you has such a beautiful, positive feel to it.

Thank you... for being here for me.

Thank you... for waiting for me.

Thank you... for your patience.

No further explanations needed. I now save apologies for occasional usage once or twice a week... simply because it's a different action... and in that it's changing things up for me.
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Old 10-12-2017, 11:07 AM
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People in my meeting are dealing with non recovering alcoholics and it doesn’t apply to me anymore.
Alcoholism is life long, and relapse is prevalent so it always applies.

I think first impressions of al-anon are dependent on what the expectations are. If we go into al-anon with the thinking that we will learn how to better help them, how to better understand them and how to better support them in their recovery……………..we are not going to have a positive experience.

Codependency has a funny way of surfacing where we don’t see some of the things we do as un-healthy.

We tend to ignore red flags in early dating, believing that over time things will get better and the person we think we love will become the person we know they can be.

You are dating someone who has a known drinking problem, healthy thinking people see that as a big red flag.

You are asking how to better understand his recovery where healthy thinking people wouldn’t be asking they would be acting by stepping away from the relationship by ending it and allowing him room to either grow as a non-drinking person or crash again all on his own without them becoming part of the wreck.

You are having anxiety and insecurities when he does not reply to you right away, that is classic un-healthy insecure codependent behaviors.

This is what al-anon is all about, you fixing your issues so that you can have healthy relationships.
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Old 10-12-2017, 11:56 AM
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Yeah I feel like Iím not getting anything out of the meetings. Maybe I should get some books and see where that takes me? Honestly we have a pretty strong relationship now. We donít see each other more than once a week and thereís not too much communication. We both work 40 hours a week. The two meetings Iíve gone to and people Iíve personally talked to, Iím aware that relapse is possible, and Iíve been told I worry more on the future than the present. Which is obviously bad lol. Iím working on that. But yeah I donít feel like the meetings are right for me.. thanks for all your input.
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Old 10-12-2017, 12:51 PM
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Honestly we have a pretty strong relationship now. We don’t see each other more than once a week and there’s not too much communication.
Not being snarky here but do you really think no communication and only seeing him once a week is a strong relationship?

Makes me understanding this statement better.

I’ve been with my recovering boyfriend for about 6 months now (I was sort of with him when he was drinking but not really).
Is this a friendship you are hoping will become romantic?
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Old 10-12-2017, 01:33 PM
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No weíre actually in a relationship lol. One day a week isnít ideal but itís the best we can do right now. Sometimes itís 1-3 times a week. But he also has curfew in his transitional housing.
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Old 10-13-2017, 06:32 AM
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Hi, Theresa.
Full disclosure: I am a firm believer in Al-Anon.
I learned so much in those rooms about alcohol addiction, about how it affects families, and, in a broader sense, about how to deal with what life throws me.
I have taken those tools and applied them throughout my day to day living.
When I decided to stop drinking, I went to AA because, as it is the companion program to Al-Anon, I knew that it worked.
I don’t go to AA anymore, but I still go to Al-Anon.
That being said, I recognize that it may not be for everyone.
The general recommendation to newcomers is that they give meetings a try for a couple of months, and that they try different meetings.
The meetings have their own vibe. I prefer large meetings with lots of diversity.
It is great that your SO is pursuing a recovery path, and that you are learning from the AA open meetings that you attend with him.
You can do both: AA and Al-Anon, if you can fit them in.
Anyway, good luck and good thoughts.
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Old 10-14-2017, 07:11 AM
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^^^^^^^^yes^^^^^^^yes^^^^^^^^^

I couldn't agree more with maudcat. To me alanon was a life saver. A day doesn't go by that I don't use one of their principles in my everyday life. It is so much more then getting help for/with your "addict".

You are blessed that you haven't experienced the destruction that your boyfriend has caused to his family and friends, that got him into rehab and a sober house in the first place. I am sure he has done some major damage. You haven't experienced the day to day to year trama that the group members have lived in, that got them to those meetings. You are with an addict, so you are only one drink away from that trama.

I think it is great that you go to open aa meetings and "support" his recovery. I do recommend that you try a few more meetings, because odds are against your boyfriend staying sober. Chances are he will relapse, but hopefully he will have the tools to get himself back on track. I don't mean to be Debbie downer, but go to the new to recovery forum and read about how many times the addicts try and get sober but relapse. This will be his challenge for the rest of his life. If you plan to ride it out, you might want to be completely educated about life with an addict. I wish the both of you luck and I pray that he stays sober.
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