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Just Answer the G*D*** Question already....

Old 12-31-2018, 01:08 AM
  # 21 (permalink)  
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I will never encourage or advise someone to end their marriage. Those kinds of decisions are personal, and none of us on this side of the screen can know the situation as you do.

If she is always feeling judged by you and you are always walking on eggshells around her, then perhaps that is a conversation that needs to be had at the very least. Whether or not it is something worth working on together is something for you to decide. If it's not, then it is not fair to either of you going forward.
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Old 12-31-2018, 05:00 AM
  # 22 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by trailmix View Post
Ok well, you perceived my post as somewhat "judgey" I think and actually it wasn't intended that way at all. I was using, what I thought was a little bit of lawyer humour - I guess that didn't work!

I am not naive, I totally get what you mean, however, the fact that this has ever been discussed (and I'm going to guess in a judgmental way because what other way is there?) cannot be overlooked.

The fact that you have ever brought her to task about it guarantees the exact reaction she had and whyever would it not?

I'm not "blaming" anyone one here, not you not her, I'm not a judge, I am just trying to shed some light on her reaction, which, in this case, seems kind of normal.

You have reiterated that she is not your "ex", I took this to mean that you still hold out some hope for this relationship? My intent was to shed light, nothing more, I'm not taking sides and i'm not playing devil's advocate.

See how easy it is to feel judged though.
Trailmix - no worries.

To steal a line from the movie "Men in Black" "we in the law business don't have a sense of humor that we're aware of."

As you know, I just started a new job (after closing up my own business) and at two-weeks in --- well, let's just say life is going to be "different." At the moment with the new job, I've been assigned at least 6 trials in the next 13 months that I'm either 1st chair (lead attorney) or 2nd chair on. Some in-town; some out-of-town. Some of it stuff I'm very familiar with; some of claims, though - like work discrimination - it's like going straight from the kiddie pool to the swim team. Add to that, the week or so before a trial - no matter what the claim - is like "cramming for college finals" - late nights, etc. Now, in reality, some of these cases will likely settle out --- but which ones???

And, I still worry about how I'm going to take care of my DS during these times as a "single parent."

As the lead attorney on many of these cases, I've got to do a "deep dive" on some of these cases that were recently re-assigned to me. Gotta know the file backwards and forwards, all the relevant facts, etc.

So, a lot of stress going on right now. Trying to figure out how the "puzzle pieces" of work and life fit together over the next 6 months to a year.

I mean, I signed DS for t-ball last night and I'm not 100% sure how I'm going to get him to practices/games on time in April since I've got 2 trials scheduled back-to-back that month.

With a true partner/spouse that you're on the same page with, all of this would be challenging.

With an AW who is in recovery, currently living in a sober living facility and who perceives things as "judgey" etc.....

I'm just not sure I have the energy or the inclination.

Plan B would be to sell the house and move myself and DS in with my brother. He works from home 2 or 3 times a week and his work days usually end at 5 p.m. And he's willing to help out with DS. It would also ease some financial pressures for both of us (splitting one rent vs. one paying rent/the other mortgage, utilities, etc.).

It makes me sad to say that my brother is, right at the moment, a more reliable "partner" than my AW.

I'm blessed to have a brother and a Plan B -- many people here do not.

But, I'm not "happy" or "excited" by implementing Plan B.

MCE Saint
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Old 12-31-2018, 10:41 AM
  # 23 (permalink)  
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MCE......Being a single parent will teach a person to "think outside the box" quicker than anything I know of....lol...(I spent several years as a single parent, with 3 young children...and their dad was of no help to me at all...in fact, he was obstructive, whenever he got the chance)..
during that time...I, also, went through a graduate level program (Physician Assistant Program).which was very demanding....sometimes--36hrs. on duty, and 24hrs off duty, at the hospital.....
And, total driving time was 3hrs. per day. I survived by the help of my community of other single parents.....we all relied on each other, soo much....

I highly suggest that you explore and locate other single parents in your locale....there are bound to be other parenting groups....and single parent organizations....you will find that they will welcome you into their midst.....it will, also, provide you with a pleasant social network that you probably never knew that existed...

LOL....I just thought of something really funny....(I hope you have a shred of humor...)..Have you ever seen the sitcom "Two and a half Men?" ..basically, two brothers live together, after the separation/divorce of one of the brothers. One brother, and, his young son, moved into the home of the other brother.....
You situation sounds very much the same.....the show is hilarious...despite the fact that I find the show to be sexist in the attitude toward women....
But, it does demonstrate some of the challenges of being a single parent...and, how family and community can help out....
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Old 12-31-2018, 11:29 AM
  # 24 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by MCESaint View Post
But, that just goes back to the problem: Even non-judgey things get perceived by her as being "judgey" . . . and that's not a "relationship" that *I* want to be in.

MCE Saint
In any 12 Step recovery Step 4 involves looking at resentments. One of the most crucial parts of this is looking at these resentments and acknowledging our part in it...because we always have a part. It's a rare case where the resentment is ENTIRELY do to the other person, usually when it's a resentment towards an abusive parent that started in early childhood. Other than that...as Rosanne Rosannadana would say...."It's always something."

I get it. Living with an addict of any kind is beyond frustrating and painful and difficult. Angry judgement is nearly impossible to avoid. The worst is the situation that you find yourself. There are reasons why you want this relationship to continue, and she may make this impossible no matter what you try to do. Being in limbo sucks.

I think that the Step 4 exercise can be useful to ANYONE, not just those in recovery. My therapist and I used a highly modified form of it to start our work together, which has been very successful.

What is your part your resentment to this relationship? Because nobody is completely blameless. Why does she perceive everything you say as "judgy?" What things about yourself and your communication could be changed to change your relationship to one you can tolerate or even enjoy? Because at the end of the day it is impossible to change someone else's behavior, only our own.

Sometimes we find ourselves in an impossible situation and have exhausted all options to change it, yet find ourselves still in it and resenting the hell out of the person and the situation. In that case, our part in it may be simply remaining in a situation we should have left already. That was one of mine.

Blowing off steam and venting...I more than get that. Being vulnerable to the whims of an addict is a living hell. They are not at all rational and their alliance is not to you, nor even to themselves. It's to their substance(s) of choice, always first and foremost. Dealing with someone in active addiction is crazy making, terrifying, sad and infuriating....sometimes all at once.

Yet only you can change your relationship to this person. They can and may change and stop their substance abuse. If they do, it may have something to do with you, and maybe not. The process of recovery is by its nature extremely selfish, as the #1 alliance is being changed from their substance to their recovery, with the same take-no-prisoners methods. The wonderful relationship that you remember will never return. It may be replaced by something else that is as or more wonderful, but it won't be the same. Recovery irrevocably changes both the addict and any relationships that they are in.

No wonder there is so much completely understandable resentment that survivors (and I use that word deliberately) of addictive relationships hold. Always remembering when they felt love, or at least a bond, with someone who chose substances over them, and holding out hope that they will give up their substance and return to them. There may be other reasons why there is a strong desire to continue the relationship, the shared life, children, family. AND IT COULD HAPPEN. But in the meantime you are left in an abusive relationship over which you have no direct control, when sometimes the only way to sanity is, however painful, to leave it and try to put your life back together elsewhere.

So ultimately, what can you do to change the situation and the relationship, if it's something you want to continue? Or how can you extricate yourself from it? Those are the only two choices that you really have, as you can't change what an addict, even one in recovery, will do.
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Old 01-01-2019, 04:42 AM
  # 25 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by MindfulMan View Post
In any 12 Step recovery Step 4 involves looking at resentments. One of the most crucial parts of this is looking at these resentments and acknowledging our part in it...because we always have a part. It's a rare case where the resentment is ENTIRELY do to the other person, usually when it's a resentment towards an abusive parent that started in early childhood. Other than that...as Rosanne Rosannadana would say...."It's always something."

I get it. Living with an addict of any kind is beyond frustrating and painful and difficult. Angry judgement is nearly impossible to avoid. The worst is the situation that you find yourself. There are reasons why you want this relationship to continue, and she may make this impossible no matter what you try to do. Being in limbo sucks.

I think that the Step 4 exercise can be useful to ANYONE, not just those in recovery. My therapist and I used a highly modified form of it to start our work together, which has been very successful.

What is your part your resentment to this relationship? Because nobody is completely blameless. Why does she perceive everything you say as "judgy?" What things about yourself and your communication could be changed to change your relationship to one you can tolerate or even enjoy? Because at the end of the day it is impossible to change someone else's behavior, only our own.

Sometimes we find ourselves in an impossible situation and have exhausted all options to change it, yet find ourselves still in it and resenting the hell out of the person and the situation. In that case, our part in it may be simply remaining in a situation we should have left already. That was one of mine.

Blowing off steam and venting...I more than get that. Being vulnerable to the whims of an addict is a living hell. They are not at all rational and their alliance is not to you, nor even to themselves. It's to their substance(s) of choice, always first and foremost. Dealing with someone in active addiction is crazy making, terrifying, sad and infuriating....sometimes all at once.

Yet only you can change your relationship to this person. They can and may change and stop their substance abuse. If they do, it may have something to do with you, and maybe not. The process of recovery is by its nature extremely selfish, as the #1 alliance is being changed from their substance to their recovery, with the same take-no-prisoners methods. The wonderful relationship that you remember will never return. It may be replaced by something else that is as or more wonderful, but it won't be the same. Recovery irrevocably changes both the addict and any relationships that they are in.

No wonder there is so much completely understandable resentment that survivors (and I use that word deliberately) of addictive relationships hold. Always remembering when they felt love, or at least a bond, with someone who chose substances over them, and holding out hope that they will give up their substance and return to them. There may be other reasons why there is a strong desire to continue the relationship, the shared life, children, family. AND IT COULD HAPPEN. But in the meantime you are left in an abusive relationship over which you have no direct control, when sometimes the only way to sanity is, however painful, to leave it and try to put your life back together elsewhere.

So ultimately, what can you do to change the situation and the relationship, if it's something you want to continue? Or how can you extricate yourself from it? Those are the only two choices that you really have, as you can't change what an addict, even one in recovery, will do.
Good points. I have to own the 50% of our marriage that is mine.

I feel a bit like a pendulum - swinging left and right (stay/go). Last night AW talked a bit and the pendulum swung back towards stay.

I asked her "do you want to drink, is it tough for you not to do so?" And she said "no, not this time....I've done stuff that I thought I'd never do" -- such as?? "live in a house with 10 other women, in a sketchy neighborhood." She's working a part-time job in a sandwich shop (after being a teacher for 20 years). Not that there's anything wrong with working in a sandwich shop, but from being a "respected" teacher (even if underpaid)...well, it has to be a reality check.

At the same time, she said "I can't promise I'll never relapse because I'm an alcoholic. All I can do is try; implement the tools I'm learning". I think that's a fair statement. A true statement. An honest statement.

Can *I* live with that honest statement?? There's the rub.

Sorry if I sound a bit like Hamlet here -- wavering, uncertain.

Sometimes I come here just to get the words and thoughts out -- and I appreciate the input.

MCE Saint
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Old 01-01-2019, 06:22 AM
  # 26 (permalink)  
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MCE....at one time, my husband and I owned an Oxford House---a sober house (you can google it).it was for men, and, many of them had families.
We owned it...we did not run it. But, we did have a lo of contact with the residents and the administration. the ones with family got to have passes to visit with family....
The average stay was a range between 6 and 18 months.....

I'm thinking that, maybe, a long stay in the sober house might give both of you an opportunity to get more clarity about what you would like for your future's.....?
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Old 01-01-2019, 07:03 AM
  # 27 (permalink)  
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^^^^^ What Dandy said!
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