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Tough Love; It works!<-----

Old 02-11-2009, 09:09 PM
  # 21 (permalink)  
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Tough Love???

Your story sounds so much like the one I have about my wife. We have been married for 5 1/2 years (i am praying that we make it to 6) Many years ago, she had panic/anxiety attacks and was prescribed ativan. After several years of ativan and vodka, she was addicted. I am a very kind person, the kind that forgives and forgave as soon as it happened. After being married for 2 years, we separated due to the drinking and ativan abuse. She turned into the infamous Dr. Jekyl and Mr. Hyde. We were apart for about a year, divorce papers were drawn up and served. I love my wife, before the divorce was final, I got a better job and I offerred her a chance to go to one of the premiere facilities in the country. She said yes because she also loved me and wanted to quit. I was there every weekend: visiting, taking cigs, taking home cooked meals, and just spending time with her. I wrote a letter every day she was there. Against mine and her parents wishes, they released her after 45 days. She came home Christmas Eve. Everything was fine for about 2 months, and then it started again: hiding vodka in water bottles under the sink, in the closet, just anywhere she didn't think I would look. The physical abuse got worse, she was fired from her job, and she would go to different doctors and get ativan. I pleaded and begged her to stop and we would go for help together. She continued. I flunked out of school and my job was in jeopardy. What was I to do? I told her parents I was filing for divorce on Friday, changed the locks on the doors, and left her a note that I wasn't living like that anymore. She went hysterical, got drunk and broke the windows, and tried to kill herself. She spent a week in psychiatric hospital and then back to rehab. When she got out of rehab that time, she went to a halfway house for 2 months and then back home again. This time, we went to meetings together every day. We spent time with others in the program and just hung out. About 4 months later it all started again: drinking, fighting, yelling, destruction. After about a month, we got an eviction notice, and the **** hit the ceiling. The neighbors called the police and they took her to jail. Before they took her, they called her father who was sheriff in a the next county, and he told them to do their job. I didn't bail her out. They did the next morning. She lived with them for a while until about a 6 months ago, she was continuously drinking at her parents house they took her back to rehab. She left within a week and lived on the streets. I was living with a relative and he knew our past and she couldn't come there. It broke my heart, but I knew if I went to get her it would continue. After about 2 weeks, I asked her parents to let her come home, and they did under the agreement she would go back to rehab. After a month of acting right they forgot about the agreement. Then last August, she went to grocery store in the middle of the afternoon drunk and the store called the police and her father. He told them again to do their job and they did. She spent a week in jail and after she got out and got put on probation she started again and her mom and dad called the proby and he came to their house got her and put her back in jail until she went back to rehab for mandatory 45 days. I never heard from her and I never contacted her while she was there. After the 45 days, the facility said she had done nothing the whole time and suggested she go back to a halfway house. She wouldn't go, so know one picked her up when she got out. She went to a hotel room called her sister in San Diego and said she was ending it. Her sister called the police and they took her to a state run facility where she stayed until Christmas day. Since she has been out, she has gone to 2-3 meetings a day, works at a law firm, has a sponsor who she has regular contact with and she is doing AWESOME! I am so happy for her, and I am praying so hard for her. She won't have anything to do with me. It breaks my heart. All I ever asked of her was to tell me "Baby, I want help. I want to quit." I told her if she were to ever say those words, people would bend over backward to help. I feel like by using "tough love", I may have lost my "true love". I beg someone to please give me something to go on. I went to al-anon and aa and I have asked for help. My life has become unmanageable, and I have no idea where to turn.
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Old 02-12-2009, 05:44 AM
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Thank you so much for your honesty. It means so much more when it comes from someone who has actually been on the receiving end of tough love. It is always a relief to hear someone that can understand and still care for the person who enforced hard consequences. So many of us spend our lives blaming and justifying everything to make ourselves look and feel better so I think it takes a rare person to be this honest with themself and others.

Congratulations on your recovery - with this kind insight and courage I think you will move past this and to me it sounds like you really are on the verge of being able to forgive your husband for having to make the tough choices as you already see that he did the right thing for all of you. Maybe you could start out by thanking him for being strong for your children.
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Old 02-12-2009, 08:32 AM
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Originally Posted by Lizrox View Post

When I was 16 years old I suffered my first panic attack while walking down one of the hallways of my highschool. It was so bad that I was rushed to the ER. My Heartrate was skyrocketing.. I kept getting these panic attacks.. tests were done (for adrenal, thyroid, you name it) they all came back negative.. My parents brought me to a psychiatrist and I was prescribed Ativan. It worked; the panic attacks went away. I was switched from Ativan, to Xanax Klonopin Valium through the years.. and then started to abuse those precriptions.
I began having horrible generalized panic attacks in my early thirties and like you ended up in the ER and in the offices of many MDs. Every single one of them was eager to begin writing scrips for Valium and other anti anxiety medications.

I had read a story in Cosmo of all place, back in my early 20's about a woman who became addicted to Valium and how quickly her addiction progressed to other drugs. The progressive nature of addiction had a profound impact on me. I knew the only difference between the author of that story and me was a decision to not accept the scripts. And so I did not and eventually figured out how to cope with the disabling panic attacks until they disappeared as quickly as they started.

No doubt being 30, not 16, contributed to being able to see through the situation to the potential consequences and make the best decision I could, for myself.

I do not understand MDs prescribing medications like this to children who are far more inclined to embark upon a life without consequences.
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Old 02-12-2009, 09:26 AM
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Originally Posted by fed34 View Post
Your story sounds so much like the one I have about my wife.
...
...
She won't have anything to do with me. It breaks my heart. All I ever asked of her was to tell me "Baby, I want help. I want to quit." I told her if she were to ever say those words, people would bend over backward to help. I feel like by using "tough love", I may have lost my "true love". I beg someone to please give me something to go on. I went to al-anon and aa and I have asked for help. My life has become unmanageable, and I have no idea where to turn.
fed34 I'm sorry you feel the way you do. I can't really have any advice for you because I've never been in your situation.
All I can say is to continue going to your meetings and taking care of yourself and your family. It's wonderful that your wife is doing well in her recovery, but you can't take credit for it any more than you can blame yourself for her disease. Maybe some day she'll forgive you for doing what you know was the right thing to do, but until then, you've got to go on with your life and focus on your recovery.
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Old 07-23-2010, 01:14 PM
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I wanted to BUMP this post up.

I can't believe I posted it in 2007!! I received many messages about it and thought the newcomers or the newcomers since 2007 may benefit from reading it.
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Old 07-11-2013, 12:29 PM
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My boyfriend is a crack addict. I am finally to the point where I am ready to let him fend for himself. I feel badly, I love him dearly, but I need peace in my life, and I need my life back. We got evicted from our apartment this past week, and I am staying with my parents with my 2 daughters. He has no where to go.. And I feel terrible but I refuse to let him steal from my parents too. He has stolen enough from me...his parents are dead, I gave him money for getting a bus ticket back to West Virginia were he's from and he sort it on crack. He is now calling me getting what he can from me, rides to various scary locations were he can stay for the night, I feel so bad that he is homeless, I don't know what to do. I guess I tried so he needs to hit bottom, which I doubt that will happen since he has been homeless before. I just want my life back. I love him but I love my kids more.
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Old 07-11-2013, 12:31 PM
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I googled this and this post came up. I didn't realize it was so old lol
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Old 07-11-2013, 01:10 PM
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Originally Posted by aef0920 View Post
I googled this and this post came up. I didn't realize it was so old lol
It's all good info, regardless of the date.

Tough love - self preservation - setting boundaries and then putting in place the repercussions should the line in the sand be crossed.

I swear by it. Not always easy to do, but well worth the effort in the long run.
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Old 07-13-2013, 09:19 PM
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Originally Posted by fed34 View Post
Since she has been out, she has gone to 2-3 meetings a day, works at a law firm, has a sponsor who she has regular contact with and she is doing AWESOME! I am so happy for her, and I am praying so hard for her. She won't have anything to do with me. It breaks my heart. All I ever asked of her was to tell me "Baby, I want help. I want to quit." I told her if she were to ever say those words, people would bend over backward to help. I feel like by using "tough love", I may have lost my "true love". I beg someone to please give me something to go on. I went to al-anon and aa and I have asked for help. My life has become unmanageable, and I have no idea where to turn.
Fed, I'm so sorry for what you're going through. Unfortunately, she'll probably harbor a lot of resentment towards you. Whether or not she gets over it, isn't really the main point. She's hurt you. You can't really "expect" her to come back, even though you did everything right to help her.

At this point, I'd say it's about you. You have to do what's best for you to get better. Addicts don't really understand and it's not our job to make them understand. Maybe one day you will truly be happy for her.

I am going through the same thing you're going through, just an earlier stage. A while back, I came to terms that tough love may cause her to never speak to me again. That's okay. I got strength through the ending scene in the movie "Super" type in youtube and then put this after the dot com. /watch?v=hNDerSVLJIY

You were there in her life for a reason. Maybe the reason is to help her get clean. Try not to want payment for doing this person a kindness. You did the right thing.

Ever go to Al Anon or Nar Anon? Those meetings may help. Good luck to you!
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Old 07-13-2013, 11:17 PM
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Fed34 only made the one post, but I wonder what happened with their relationship & recovery?
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