Rational or Irrational Fear

Old 11-04-2002, 05:14 PM
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Rational or Irrational Fear

Hello everyone

As I have been saying lately things at home with my husband (my A) have been pretty good. He is almost 3 weeks sober now and has turned out to be a great help around the house. He's still looking for a job and that sucks but he doesn't dwell on the fact that it sucks anymore (or doesn't seem to anyway).

Here's my issue. I am afraid that he doesn't love me the way he thought he did when he was drinking. I have never known him sober (not really anyway) until now and my mother-in-law mentioned that she was nervous that I wouldn't feel the same about him now he's sober. I said no, no, no! We have the same goals, the same values, we LIKE each other. Well, now I'm nervous that he maybe doesn't like ME.

Maybe I'm expecting too much of him right now; I know he needs to focus on staying sober above everything else including me. But he spends so much time alone- while I'm in the house, in another room. He doesn't seem to want to be with me. Additionally, he sleeps downstairs on the couch. He did that alot when he was drinking (more places to hide the booze) but I guess I thought...I don't know. I guess some sort of intimacy would be nice- not necessarily even physical.

So my questions are: #1 Do you think this is normal behavior for someone recently sober? and #2 How should I refocus my thoughts on me when what I want involves another person? (ie. intimacy)

I have been trying very hard to detach myself and my behavior from his recovery and to focus on my own but I guess I'm confused about what I "want". I guess always had this issue. I thought I just wanted to grow up and marry a good man who balanced the chores and family-rearing with me. I thought I just wanted a husband and a couple of kids, a comfortable house and money to pay the bills. If I have this idyllic vision of how I want my life to be, how do I achieve some sort peace with what I "want" KNOWING I can't control any of the pieces and parts in it (except for me)? (By the way I only have the husband and the house right now)

Any thoughts?

Thanks as always

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Old 11-04-2002, 05:32 PM
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(((((((((((((((((((((Glow worm)))))))))))))))))))

That is a cute name! I think how your feeling is completly normal... probably for the both of you... Maybe right now it would be a good idea to think about things that you could do that would make you happy besides snuggling and cuddling...

My friend who is an A told me when she first started recovery for the first three months she did not want anything to do with anybody including her kids... She would go to work, meetings, and go home and sleep... She was lucky enough to have her sister who took care of the kids when she was emotionally and physically unable too... As time passed and her recovery continued she became stronger physically and mentally...

I also miss the intimacy... but I know that right now I really need to keep the focus on myself...

Hugs to you... Clowie
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Old 11-04-2002, 05:41 PM
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Thanks Clowie!

I will try to focus on other things for now. I thought about it after I posted that: "just a husband and a couple of kids, a comfortable house and money to pay the bills"- that sounds pretty boring! There's no activity there! I guess I was thinking we'd all just sit around in the house and stare at each other! LOL

Thanks for responding. It really feels good to know that there are people out there caring and listening and helping!

By the way, my name comes from a nickname the stage director gave me in a high school musical- still not really sure why! I was really excited to find a picture of Lowly Worm for my Avatar- I always thought he was the best Richard Scarry character.

Thanks again! I'll just keep on keepin' on...

PS. My first face to face Alanon meeting is Friday...I hope it makes me feel as good as reading/responding/receiving replies on this board
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Old 11-04-2002, 05:52 PM
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Glow Worm

Glad you will be going to a meeting. Practicing your own recovery right now is the best thing you can do. It is painful to expect something from someone who has nothing to give, but accepting that situation right now is probably the only choice.

It doesn't mean that your life or that of your children has to stop. You are free to do things that you enjoy and you don't need to feel guilty if you have fun without him. Just because he is unhappy and withdrawn, doesn't mean you have to be too.

Given time, he may start to join in, but during that time, do nice things for yourself and your children.
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Old 11-04-2002, 05:53 PM
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Glow Worm,
(((((((gloworm))))) first a big hug to you. A big pat on the back to your husband and his sobriety as well. I wouldn't focus your time wondering about if your husband still "likes" or "loves" you now that he has not been drinking, focus on you in any way that you can. What is important is if YOU like YOU! One thing I have learned is that we have to become loveable and comfortable with ourselves FIRST, before anyone else can. I used to base my opinion of myself with how my x-A felt about me. As Smoke would say, sober or not the A is not a good measuring stick to go by.

Hang in there.....your a beautiful person who deserves alot. One day at a time....and everything will fall into place.

Take care...
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Old 11-04-2002, 05:59 PM
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Great answer Bonbon. Hugs to you.
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Old 11-04-2002, 06:03 PM
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Anns and Bonbon:

Thanks for responding and you are both right! I will stop worrying about him and just worry about me for a while. I AM a great person and so he's just going to miss out on that (LOL!) I think I'll catch up on my reading and maybe track down some new recipes..

I am excited but also nervous about the Friday meeting- wish me luck

By the way, I don't have any kids yet. I am hoping someday....

Thanks again!

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Old 11-04-2002, 06:07 PM
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Sorry, I misread your earlier post. But you certainly can have fun doing the things you mentioned. And you are worthy of love and respect. Our slogan at CoDA (Codependents Anonymous) is "To thine own self be true". Better believe it!!! I Do.
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Old 11-04-2002, 07:22 PM
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I relate

I can relate so much to the place you are in. Some days I'm fine with taking care of me while my A isolates himself. Other days I just want to have our relationship back. My expectations always get me into trouble. My A and I recently had a long talk about his isolating and non affectionate behavior. He tried to reassure me that it wasn't personal, it was him. It is SO hard to not take it personal. It is SO hard to not try to fix things.... But WE have to learn to detach and take care of ourselves.
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Old 11-04-2002, 08:14 PM
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From what I understand, this is perfectly normal. As we go through our recovery journey, the focus HAS to be on yourself, and as the A's go thru their recovery, their focus has to be on THEM. Doesn't leave much time for the couple, but as each becomes healthier it should become better.

I am so happy that you are going to a ftf meeting. I hope you find additional support and understanding there. Its a big step for you!


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Old 11-05-2002, 05:55 AM
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Glow - When my A quit drinking, there was a huge readjustment period. He didn't want anything to do with me physically for over 6 mos. He didn't have much energy for anything for 6 mos or more, either. He slept 18+ hrs a day. It was almost like when he was drinking except when he was drinking he would sometimes say the sweetest things to me and that all ended, too. I mean, he loved me still but he is not very expressive sober. It was almost like courting all over again. We had to get to know each other on sober terms. It was a very scary time because I didn't know if he would ever be "normal" and I had never known him sober. It took about a year before he began to act like what I expected a "normal" person to act like. He still isn't as expressive as I would like but the physical part of the relationship came back slowly. 3 yrs + now and I think I finally have the man I saw through all that liquor yrs ago. I went through some of MY hardest times after he quit, though. I had to find ME again since all of ME had been so wrapped up in him.

I will say that while it was very hard for both of us, we are now a much happier and healthier couple There is a light at the end of the tunnel if you are willing to walk in the dark for awhile.
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Old 11-05-2002, 06:37 AM
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Hiya Glow Worm!

Please stop worrying about whether he loves you or not. What's not to love? At 3 weeks he simply still feels rotten. Remember, too, that while they're drunk they don't have to face the havoc their drinking has caused. He's not blotting out the guilt right now, so he's working through that, too.

Buy yourself a bunch of flowers today and write a mushy card to yourself. Make sure you tell you HOW DARN LOVABLE you are! Read it every fifteen minutes.

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Old 11-05-2002, 07:27 AM
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Hi Glow Worm -

I don't post very often, but I came to this board with almost the exact same question. My A has now been sober for almost 2 months. The physcial aspect of our relationship is definatley not what it used to be, not even close. But I'm finding a different kind of intimacy through our conversations and the everyday things that he is doing around the house (which never happened when he was drinking). I also never new my A when he was sober, so it's almost like going on a blind date and then immediately starting a serious relationship. I'm definately taking things one day at a time and so far it's an adventure I'm enjoying because I'm learning a lot about myself also.

Hang in there girl! Take care...

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Old 11-05-2002, 08:50 AM
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hi glowworm,
you're not alone. my husband is about 1 month sober, i guess. we don't talk about it. our painful past stands in the way. my husband could lavish sweet affectionate gestures and speeches sometimes when he was drinking, unfortunately the disease progressed in both of us and i became the warden of his drinking. this progression resulted in trust and respect and spontaneous gestures of affection being totally killed. when i was at his family days last month the counselor sat us down privately face to face and made us say to each other what we wanted. he told me he wanted to get better,"be normal, be there for me and the kids, be a good man and husband, i told him i wanted the man i fell in love with back and all the warmth and intimacy with it. she looked us both in the eye and said to us, you can have that if you work on recovery, it takes a long time to rebuild, and you're both very sick and need to take care of yourselfs if you're ever gonna get what you both want and deserve and can have. it''s a long hard challenging daily job,and you won't always be on the same page, but hopefully on the same path. my husband is emotionally unavailable, angry, withdrawn, tired and rejecting aa and mad about rehab group, but he is sober for 1 month. i guess i miss him, but the place we were heading was way worse than were we are today. i'll send you hugs and don't be afraid to cry a little and grieve for your losses. better days are coming and your desire for a better life will come to you in time, by the grace of god. we've all been thru so much chaos and pain and have a tendency to want it all fixed immediately. patience and focus on your spirit. do something nice for yourself today!! hugs from sugar
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Old 10-28-2005, 06:32 AM
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i'm feeling the same!

hi glow, i was glad to find your post. i'm in the same boat. my husband is sober about three weeks and there is absolutely no intamicy or sex. i was lost as to who to talk to so i asked jeeves and your post came up in the search. i've been in al-anon for over a year and i'm trying real hard to stay focused on me. i can see where i contributed to the down fall of my marriage and the constant reacting to my husbands drinking. i am also an adult child so i guess i'm totaly co- dependent. i'm working on it. what i don't understand is how just three weeks ago my husband was all over me and now he says he just doesn't have those feelings anymore? if there is anyone with some insight it would be greatly appreciated. for now i guess it's one day at a time and let go and let god! thanks in advance.
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Old 10-28-2005, 07:06 AM
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Hi Girls New ones and not so new!

My guy has been in recovery for almost 4 months now, when an alcoholic gives up the drink it has a major effect on him both psychologically and physically. It will take awhile for them to adjust to all that is changing in their lives and their bodies.
In my guys case it was quite a rapid recovery; took him about 3 weeks to start chasing me around the bedroom! but I do know that it can take much longer for an A to fully recover from all the effects of quitting.
Give yourselves and your partner some time and space;take gentle steps along the road to recovery.
Good Luck
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Old 10-28-2005, 07:18 AM
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Hi Glow Worm and welcome to SR....
I know how you feel....When my exA was sober he was very distant and isolated. I met him when he was a the peak of his drinking, I never knew him sober. I used to think the same things, "maybe he doesn't love me anymore, maybe he doesn't like me."
When he was drinking he would tell anyone that would listen, how much he loved me, I rarely heard that after he stopped drinking. As a result of my insecurites, I badgered him, hounded him, wasn't very pleasant to him, because I was afraid he would leave me. I believed I sent him back to the drinking with all of my craziness. I wasn't consistant with supporting him when he needed it most. I was a mess back then.
Today, I have learned to let go and work my own program which requires a lot of "me" time just like an A's does. Give it time and spend some time here and at Alanon, attend an open AA meeting, you will find you are not alone and quite possibly a better way to handle it than I did.
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Old 10-28-2005, 09:10 AM
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Hey Glow Worm,just luv that name you picked.Welcome!!!!!
recovery is a process,and when fear rears its head,that slogan...One Day At A Time,becomes a montra for me.To live in ---today---in da moment....To express my fears to another.Then i let go,let God.Healing is different for everyone.No one person heals the exact same way,as another.Healing takes...time.,patience.Not always easy to do,but,to have peace,its worth it.
Ive been keeping myself busy with my own recovery.Helping another helps keep me out of his recovery program,and being with family,friends,,etc.Lots of great things to do,..My relationship with God,fills that void,that deep voild that i feel at times..Seems to me,that your mother-in-law planted a seed that you have accepted,as being truth?Please remember that although Mom,may believe in what she is telling you,and her intentions are good,that the truth is,that this is just her opinion,her perceptions.And that they dont have to be yours too.No one knows Gods,Plans for others.How things will turn out for another.Your hub is in recovery,is a great example,of what folks dont know,how things will turn out.Who'd of thunk that he ever would do this?
Congrats to you both,onto your new life!!!!!!
keep on keeping on
God Bless,take care!!!!!!!!!
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