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Looking for a Rainbow in the Rain

Old 04-07-2021, 10:11 AM
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Looking for a Rainbow in the Rain

Hello everyone. I am new to SR and posting today to ask-- Does anyone have a story of positive recovery with an alcoholic husband? I feel like I'm looking for a rainbow or some other redeeming factor of this struggle. Maybe in my case that doesn't exist, but I want to believe that there's still hope.

My story- my husband of 8 years (together for 10) recently left me and our 5 yr old son because he didn't like feeling restrained in his alcohol use and felt that it was me that had a problem with alcohol and that he, as a functioning alcoholic, was fine as long as he held down a job and wasn't drunk for more than a day at a time. He began struggling with alcohol abuse about 3 yrs into our marriage (though has family history of alcohol abuse) and had a very serious car accident resulting in a shattered knee cap, months of physical therapy and of course, promises to never drink again. That was short lived and over the years, he became more and more dependent on it. Any attempts from me to get him to stop were useless ( I understand now why from Al Anon).

We decided to take a big step as a family and move to a new state (12 hrs away) for new opportunities for us both and a chance at a fresh start away from the "people, places, and things" that had him caught in a destructive cycle. The first year had its up and downs, but my AH joined AA for the first time last summer and was making process.Our marriage and home life had never been better..until he decided the group dynamic at AA wasn't healthy (due to inappropriate sharing) and left recovery. He scaled back on alcohol use for a while, but slowly but surely drank more (hiding it from me) and began to resent me and any boundaries I would set. So...he moved out in Feb because he wanted "time to himself and to evaluate our relationship." He grew more and more distant and I found out this past weekend that he has been unfaithful to me, at least twice, with prostitutes while drunk. He says he doesn't know who he is anymore and/or why he made these choices. I am beyond hurt and disappointed by everything and just really on auto-pilot right now to keep my sanity and things as stable as possible for our 5 yr old. I took back all keys and joint account cards from my AH and fully planned on filing for divorce this week, but I also don't want to be hasty. He was the love of my life and I care for him deeply... but now he is becoming someone that even he doesn't recognize. I want to believe that somehow I can heal from this heartache, that my AH will finally wake up to the fact that he does have a problem and find recovery, and that maybe-- some way, some how-- this is not where our story ends.

I am not actively trying to save our marriage, or get my AH to go to recovery, or do anything other than surrender my will over to God (my higher power) and focus on my own healing and recovery. But-- just want to know anyone have a story of a relationship that survived such fatal flaws? Is it possible?

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Old 04-07-2021, 10:43 AM
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I think your best bet might be to use the search function! For instance, there was a thread on this board a short while ago titled “Sharing My Update” that might be similar to what you are looking for.

The sense I get from this community is that if you focus on taking care of yourself that your life will get better. It may or may not be with this partner, but it will get better, especially if you prioritize the health/safety of your kids and yourself. But there are a lot more people here who know far more than me!
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Old 04-07-2021, 11:20 AM
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Thank you for your reply, Edoering, and for letting me know about the search function.
Peace and blessings.
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Old 04-07-2021, 11:44 AM
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We don't see too many stories, if any, of a spouse getting sober and how wonderful it was. We do have folks who stuck out the marriage with partners who did get sober or until the drinking partner passed away from alcohol. Most people say the first year of sobriety is hell for everyone involved.

Perhaps people whose partners recovered and everything was wonderful don't need to post here on Soberrecovery.

Let us know how you get on. This is a very difficult situation to deal with.
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Old 04-07-2021, 11:55 AM
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So sorry to read your post. Heartbreaking for you.

I would encourage you to look after yourself and build the life you would like. Al-anon is a fantastic help, a real life changer for me. My husband continued to drink too. He never found sobriety.
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Old 04-07-2021, 12:32 PM
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rosemary......as has already been said...there aren't many if any of the kind of stories that you are looking for. on this particular forum. When new members arrive here, they are usually at a point of crisis in their relationship, and feel somewhat how you have described. Most situations have spiraled fairly far in the disease.

If you are asking if anyone ever got into genuine recovery and had a relationship that :"survived"....my answer would be yes, but you probably won't find them here. Across the world, there are millions of such stories...in the rooms of AA. There are also, at the same time, millions and millions, worldwide, that do not ever recover----for a myriad of reasons that are longer than this sheet of paper...lol.
Personally, I know several of each type---those that did reach recovery and those that never did.

If you would like to hear some real life stories....I suggest that you attend some Open AA meetings. The Open meetings are those that are open to guests (who can just observe) and some of the have Speakers Meetings. You can find these speakers meetings listed on any schedule of AA meetings. These speakers will tell the story of their journey to entering into recovery.
Mind you, an alcoholic is never "cured" but are living in recovery, by the principles of AA for one day at a time. It is a life long process.

Honestly, when your husband stopped AA because of inappropriate sharing---that sounds, to me like a convenient excuse. There are so many different AA meetings that are available, that would not be the same as others...both in person and on line.

We have an extensive library of over one hundred excellent articles about alcoholism and the effects on the loved ones in our stickies section...and on the forum called "The Best of Soberrecovery".
For your convenience, I am giving you the following link to one of those articles that I think is a pretty good yardstick. You might find it useful, just now.

10 Ways to Tell When an Addict or Alcoholic is Full of Crap - SoberRecovery : Alcoholism Drug Addiction Help and Information (10 Ways to Tell When an Addict or Alcoholic is Full of Crap)
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Old 04-07-2021, 12:39 PM
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Hi rosemary. I hope you will read around the forum and of course, keep posting. Sometimes we need to hear the other side as well as the one we hope for?

One such thread you are asking about is here: https://www.soberrecovery.com/forums...my-update.html (Sharing my update) "RAH" refers to Recovering Alcoholic Husband by the way.

You may want to look back on the whole story. You can do this by clicking on the member's name in the thread (above their picture) then clicking on Public Profile then the Statistics tab. You can select View all threads by that person. Recovering alcoholic threads are few and far between in this forum. It does happen, usually after years of conflict. I can't remember one that made it through infidelity (if that is how you view it) as well as alcoholism though (but there could be and I just don't remember it).

felt that it was me that had a problem with alcohol and that he, as a functioning alcoholic, was fine as long as he held down a job and wasn't drunk for more than a day at a time.
This is actually true, he doesn't have a problem with his drinking, generally and you do. That doesn't make either of you right or wrong, it just is. Might be wrong for your family life, might be wrong for you and your child to be around, might be self destructive to him, but that's his choice.

Are you being hasty? Well, really it's all about what you want. He may quit drinking next week, he may never quit. Not every alcoholic looks for recovery. How much time are you willing to invest in him deciding to get sober? If say, in a year he decides he will give it a try, how much time will you wait to see if he is serious this time.

Alcoholism is progressive as well. He may be a functioning alcoholic today, but that's just a stage of alcoholism.

I don't mean to sound negative, some people do enter recovery.

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Old 04-08-2021, 07:48 AM
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Thanks everyone for your comments and insight. I am glad that I found this forum. Just reading through the stories of everyone's personal journies (with or without a positive recovery ending) has helped me realize that I'm not alone. It can literally feel so isolating at times, especially being 12 hrs away from family, so you all and Al Anon have been a help. I will keep posting and reading, and hoping for the best (for my own recovery).
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Old 04-08-2021, 07:53 AM
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Originally Posted by trailmix View Post

Alcoholism is progressive as well. He may be a functioning alcoholic today, but that's just a stage of alcoholism.

I don't mean to sound negative, some people do enter recovery.
Trailmix, you're 100% correct. I have seen him progress from a healthy, happy young adult who was seldom drunk when we first married, to someone who is unhappy and needs a drink everyday. It's definitely a "family disease" because there is no way that his slow downward progression hasn't negativity affected myself and our son. Praying for serenity today.
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Old 04-08-2021, 08:16 AM
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Hi Rosemary s

I am so very gIad you are in AIanon. Such a wonderfuI program. xx

I wanted to ask you something, if that is OK....what do you want?
I understand he is the Iove of your Iife, but do you reaIIy want to move forward with your marriage?

My story is very different, but yes, I have come out the other side of this situation.
Marriages can be saved, but onIy if both partners are on the same page here, I think.

He needs to want recovery, or at Ieast be wiIIing to go to rehab.
I can't see another way that you wiII ever have the man you Ioved back.

I am so sorry....this is so so hard. s
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Old 04-08-2021, 09:45 AM
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Originally Posted by RosemaryRain View Post
It's definitely a "family disease" because there is no way that his slow downward progression hasn't negatively affected myself and our son.
The fact that you understand this is a big step in the right direction. So often I've seen folks post here, looking for affirmation about staying in an unhealthy relationship "for the kids." They feel that their children are somehow completely impervious to the atmosphere of dishonesty and tension and oblivious to the facts. As the saying goes, though, "little pitchers have big ears", and the kids are usually fully aware that there is a problem (and sadly, sometimes blame themselves for it). Your AH is NOT the honest, caring, fully present person you'd want as a partner for yourself and parent for your child. He has his own agenda, and his actions bear that out, regardless of what his words say.

Whether, when and how you take action on this knowledge is completely up to you. It's not easy. It's certainly painful. But along the way, you'll experience incredible growth and freedom. Hold strong, Rosemary. I'm glad to hear you're reading around the forum and hope you'll also stop in the "Adult Children" section of the forum if you need any further convincing of the lifelong effect that growing up in a household with alcoholism/addiction can have.

(By the way, I looked up the symbolic meaning of rosemary, the herb, and found that it's associated with love, memory and mourning. Did you choose it for your name b/c of this, or is there another story?)
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Old 04-08-2021, 10:07 AM
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Originally Posted by honeypig View Post
the kids are usually fully aware that there is a problem (and sadly, sometimes blame themselves for it).
This is so true. Our son shared today that he told one of our neighbors yesterday about how his dad is "not in our family anymore". I asked him how he was feeling about this and of course, he began to cry and didn't have the words. My response was that it was okay to be sad because I am too, and that his dad will also be his dad, and therefore family, even if he's not with us at home. And that his dad isn't healthy right now but hopefully one day can be. I don't think he fully understood but I'm trying my hardest to help him process this very difficult and complex emotions and create a stable home life for him, in spite of it all.
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Old 04-08-2021, 10:10 AM
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Rosemary.....did you know that there a number of books that help parents talk to kids about alcoholism---and, books for the kids to read also. They are also for teen aged also. Youcan find them through amazon.com or your local library.
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Old 04-08-2021, 10:11 AM
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Originally Posted by honeypig View Post
(By the way, I looked up the symbolic meaning of rosemary, the herb, and found that it's associated with love, memory and mourning. Did you choose it for your name b/c of this, or is there another story?)
HoneyPig, that's so interesting about rosemary. I knew it was an herb and is my (married) last name (Romero) in English, but I have actually never looked up the symbols associated with it. Considering where we are, it is certainly very fitting.

I did a quick search and in some countries, it can also symbolize love, happiness and loyalty. I hope so... in some shape or form.

XOXO Peace and Blessings XOXO
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Old 04-08-2021, 10:18 AM
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Originally Posted by dandylion View Post
Rosemary.....did you know that there a number of books that help parents talk to kids about alcoholism---and, books for the kids to read also. They are also for teen aged also. Youcan find them through amazon.com or your local library.
Hi, Dandylion. I know that they exist but haven't looked into them. I definitely should. I was trying to shelter my son from this reality until it became unavoidable... it's definitely time now to talk about it in an age appropriate way. Thanks for suggesting.
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Old 04-08-2021, 10:18 AM
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Rosemary, just sent you a PM (private message), please check when you can. Look at the topmost right corner of your screen to see the link.
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Old 04-08-2021, 10:26 AM
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Originally Posted by venuscat View Post

I wanted to ask you something, if that is OK....what do you want?
I understand he is the Iove of your Iife, but do you reaIIy want to move forward with your marriage?
VenusCat, this is a question that I am pondering and needing to answer within myself. And I'm not sure that I can at the moment. I think it depends on where my husband's head and heart is for this family, and if we can get the support and resources we need to even have a shot a moving forward, in a redefined and recommitted way. I have a vision and picture of the functioning family that I want for myself and my son, and right now I'm putting my energy in making that reality with or without my AH. I am compartmentalizing my marriage situations and moving that aside for now, and just trying to be a happy and healthy mama. Not sure I answered your question fully lol, but that's where I'm at for now.

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Old 04-08-2021, 10:32 AM
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I understand. s

And I think you are a wonderfuI mother. xx
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