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Been a rough month

Old 07-15-2019, 08:54 AM
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Been a rough month

Kind of just feeling a little (or extremely) bummed out and wanted to check in. Although I feel this might turn into a feelings dump so please don't mind me.

This month has been super hard. I'm decently settled into my new life at this point-- it's been over two months since separating from AH. However, this was the first 4th of July I celebrated without him in probably a decade. To be honest, it was a terrible holiday. I stayed home for most of it. My brother was in town with his wife so I met up with the two of them and my mom for breakfast. Asked what their plans were and all sheepishly told me they were invited to a party of a family friend and that I wasn't asked to go because this friend is also a very good mutual friend of AH and he would probably be there. So you can imagine how much that sucked, to watch them all go off to this party while I went home and put together furniture because I was too sad to find other plans.


On top of that, my family takes a week long camping trip every July...so this was also the first time AH wasn't part of that in at least 8 years. It was a lot of fun and I enjoyed myself, but it made me miss him like crazy and think about all the things we'll never get to do together again. Which probably sounds illogical, but he blended so well with my family and watching my siblings with their spouses just made me so sad, and made me wonder if I'll ever find someone who gets along so well with my brother, or who my mother loves as much as she loves AH. Or someone who loves to camp with me, and doesn't complain. Basically I found myself suddenly compiling a list of all the reasons I should've stayed with him and convincing myself it wasn't that bad/I should've tried harder/shouldn't have left so quickly/etc etc. Even though I know (after re-reading my old threads) that I was just as miserable when we were together.

Wait if you thought I was done, there's more-- disclaimer first, I am NOT trying to date at all right now or anytime soon. However I got invited to this get together with lots of people my own age. And maybe it's just because I'm an old soul who hates going out or because I just am paranoid about alcohol consumption/have negative connotations to it, but I was flabbergasted by the amount of drinks all these 30 year old men my own age were consuming. Like partying like we were 21. And I had to leave because it made me spiral into thinking 'well AH NEVER acted like that, and at least he was just drinking at home on the couch on Fridays/Saturdays. These guys are out of control'. I actually cried on the way home...what is that about?!

I just suddenly feel like I have no idea what normal is. Was it normal with AH and I just blew it out of proportion? Were these people at this party normal and I'm just weird about drinking now? Did I screw up a relationship with a man who, yes, has issues, but also loved me unconditionally and will I ever find that again? Because honestly the idea of ever dating again is exhausting and daunting.

I knew at some point I was going to feel that knot in my chest, sick to my stomach sadness over ending things with AH, but god does this suck. It does get easier, I hope. And I especially hope to finally find the clarity that I did the right thing so I can stop living with all this doubt and wondering if I ruined a perfectly good life.

Ugh. Thanks for coming to my pity party. I'll be fine, I know I will be. Just having a tough month.
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Old 07-15-2019, 09:21 AM
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I’m so sorry this is a rough time and you’re feeling sad. FWIW, the Fourth of July has become the summer New Year’s eve in the area where I now live...drunks, firearms, and fireworks for a loud hot miserable week. I hate it.

I went back to your old threads...here’s your first, way back in October 2017...

https://www.soberrecovery.com/forums...o-anymore.html (Don't know what to do anymore...)

A quote: “I know I sound bitter and jaded. I hate complaining but I'm lonely and I'm miserable and this is not what a marriage is, right?”

That situation was not going to get better. Would he even have joined you on the camping trip or would he have stayed home with his drunkathon and video games? Or would he have gone but ruined your time by worrying about his drinking the whole time?

I remember how easy it was to mess with my head and only remember the good stuff. Yes, you’re sad and grieving right now. But you were sad and grieving while you were in the marriage, too. This way you have HOPE. You can and will have a better life, I promise.

Sending you a hug.
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Old 07-15-2019, 09:22 AM
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Hi emma,

Self-doubt, self-isolation and negative spiralling can be hallmarks of this family disease of alcoholism. Things don't change simply because the alcoholic isn't currently in our lives.

What types of help/support/recovery plans have you sought in the past or are currently making use of?



Yes, things can and do get better. There are many things we can learn to do that will bring about quicker, faster changes.

Going beyond the familiar, there's a really big, wonderful world for us to experience. A friend told me, "all the joy and happiness you'll ever want are right outside your comfort zone." There's been a lot of truth in those words.
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Old 07-15-2019, 09:30 AM
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It's not your fault. Alcoholism. The way you've been treated before. Mental, emotional, psychological abuse. The way you're being treated now in being excluded.

The three C's: I didn't Cause it. I can't Control it. I can't Cure it.
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Old 07-15-2019, 09:31 AM
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emmab, if it helps any, I went through a divorce (not to an alcoholic) many years ago, and the first year was FULL of moments like this. It gets easier, it gets better, and I'm sorry to tell you, it just takes time. You have healing to do, and you're just getting started. The world continues to move on in the meantime and that can feel disappointing, but I promise that you are going to catch up.

I want to say, though, that I'm sorry your family members left you behind on the 4th of July. You may find that you have to ask explicitly for the kind of support you need -- like a solid plan for holidays. They don't have a rulebook for this stuff either, and sometimes that's going to come across, like this time, as a bit mean-spirited.
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Old 07-15-2019, 10:02 AM
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And I especially hope to finally find the clarity that I did the right thing so I can stop living with all this doubt and wondering if I ruined a perfectly good life.

The great thing about being able to read your past threads (or keeping a diary serves the same purpose) is it lets you play the tape all the way through to the end....if you look back at your actual marriage, and play the tape all the way through to the end, you will see that you made the best decision and that you certainly did not leave a "perfectly good life!!"

I agree with Sparklekitty - I also remember the first year of my divorce being very painful, and my mind wanting to look back at the rosy times and forget all the total cr*p I was putting up with and how unhappy I was.

It was a painful time and I got into some really good and deep therapy at that time so I could figure out why I had chosen that partner and make my peace with it, and also how to change my codependent ways so I never chose to be in that type of dynamic again if I ever started dating or looking for a new relationship. I chose to look forward and do some really hard work on changing myself.

But the lethargy and sadness were tough at times...I'm glad you came here to dump a load of self-pity. Sometimes you just NEED to do that. The anniversaries and feeling left out that first year are very painful, so I mean, allow yourself to feel those feelings. That bad/sad time was the beginning of a whole new life for me, I shed a lot of tears, and I am so grateful to therapy for guiding me on to a new better path!

The past is gone. You are free in THIS moment!

Peace,
B.
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Old 07-15-2019, 10:23 AM
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Hi Emma, I think the initial 6 months - a year are filled with ups & downs... reflection, self doubt and grieving. I oddly started grieving my ex girlfriend a few days ago - after doing so well at moving forward. I think this is normal. Once the anger goes away, somehow there’s positive reflection that happens... even if the relationship was toxic and abusive. The brain tries to fix what was damaged... and many of the bad experiences seem less evident, at least in my experience. This is where I need to be careful and not backtrack at all! You are moving along, Emma! Keep going! In a year... hopefully all this will start to be a distant memory.
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Old 07-15-2019, 10:58 AM
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Thanks for the kind, supportive words! I braced myself for this to be hard, but I don't think anything could have fully prepared me for the reality of how hard the first year was going to be. I'm dreading the holidays already (especially considering we got married on my absolute favorite holiday).

I really, really would love to get back into seeing a therapist but unfortunately don't have the healthcare to cover that. Maybe I'll have to look into services that are priced on a sliding scale or something.
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Old 07-15-2019, 11:01 AM
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My therapist cut my rate in half in the wake of my divorce when she decided to stop taking insurance. It's worth asking!
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Old 07-15-2019, 11:06 AM
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Hi em
i read something on this site called the in-between when I first moved out of my home. It really helped with my confusion of leaving a "perfectly good life" without having a new one yet
I can't find it now because I'm posting on a phone. I will look for it when I get home from holiday and can use the computer

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Old 07-15-2019, 12:23 PM
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I used to see a therapist before I switched jobs and lost my insurance, so maybe I'll contact her and see if they do a sliding scale.

Amaranth-- found that post in the stickies. Wow did that hit the nail on the head. It was exactly what I needed today. Thank you.
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Old 07-15-2019, 12:26 PM
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Free and low cost options that have been huge for me:

Al-Anon. Donations accepted at meetings to cover expenses. No need to donate or on any kind of schedule. I found it satisfying to contribute a small amount at each meeting for a while. Sometimes I donate larger amounts at various times and pass the basket without donating with no worries of doing something different. At first it really bothered me to do things differently, yet that's exactly how growth and changes happen for me.

Domestic violence help centers. Victim's advocates. Group therapy. All have been no cost. Different communities have different services.
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Old 07-15-2019, 12:26 PM
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Originally Posted by emmab219 View Post
I just suddenly feel like I have no idea what normal is. Was it normal with AH and I just blew it out of proportion? Were these people at this party normal and I'm just weird about drinking now?
If you go in to a pub on any given day, there is always a group getting drunk, pretty much (doesn't matter if they are 30 or 90).

Although we tend to "pretty" up drinking, it's just a drug. Whether that's 2 glasses of wine or 5 beer. I don't mean that in some kind of judgmental way, I don't care how much anyone drinks, I just think that we tend to over-romanticize drinking.

There are also groups and couples having 1 or 2 drinks with dinner. Next time you go out with a group that might be the ones you are with, I hope so, since that is your comfort zone probably.

That will be your "normal" - whatever you want it to be, isn't that great! (well it will be).
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Old 07-15-2019, 12:34 PM
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I remember going out one night after I divorced. It was just be a group of friends hanging out, which it was, at first. Well, one of these ladies was just divorced, and I cannot say anything except she was on the prowl lol. So we went to this club, and I was so shocked.

There, in this club, were the same ol people from the bars when I was in college (and trust me, that's been quite some time ago). Drinking, dancing, and hooking up. Acting like college kids in a club. I was just astounded. I mean, who wants to keep living that life. Isn't it time to....grow up?!

That was the end of me being at the club. I am not cut out for that.

As time goes, you make the effort to create new memories of the holidays that make new, happy memories for you to focus on. Remember, family does not have to be blood. Don't lock yourself away in the house, reach out, do things with other people. Meet new people. Do things YOU enjoy!

Life is not over...I promise!
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Old 07-15-2019, 01:02 PM
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sometimes our memories like to soften and alter the pictures, so they look nicer in the photo album. you two had only been married a short two years when you first arrived at SR and things were already getting intolerable. then it progressed. and a year later you posted:

https://www.soberrecovery.com/forums...k-im-done.html (I Think I'm Done)

you were NOT making a big deal out of nothing.
there very much WERE problems.
your relationship had disintegrated and Mr Wonderful was anything but.

i am a bit stunned with your family's behavior over the 4th:
My brother was in town with his wife so I met up with the two of them and my mom for breakfast. Asked what their plans were and all sheepishly told me they were invited to a party of a family friend and that I wasn't asked to go because this friend is also a very good mutual friend of AH and he would probably be there.
seriously?? what a bunch of sh!heads. you have my total blessing to pout and be irked over THAT.

it's all gonna take TIME, emma. nobody wants to hear that. but it's true. it always took me around two years to get over a serious relationship/man person. regardless of the reasons. or the methods or lack there of to get through it.
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Old 07-15-2019, 04:41 PM
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Yes, the year of firsts. I just completed mine! I had the same thoughts and feelings. It takes time.
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Old 07-16-2019, 06:18 AM
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I just suddenly feel like I have no idea what normal is. Was it normal with AH and I just blew it out of proportion? Were these people at this party normal and I'm just weird about drinking now?
So sorry you're going through such a tough time, but it will pass, I promise. There's a big difference between an alcoholic and people celebrating a holiday. It's a progressive disease and the alcoholic becomes a daily drinker who doesn't care about the consequences. Have you checked out Alanon? It's tremendous support and was a lifesaver for me going through a split like yours. A big hug!
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Old 07-18-2019, 04:09 PM
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Hi everyone,

Checking in to see how you are. You're important, we each are! Please post soon and let us know how it's going.
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