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Old 10-11-2015, 10:29 AM
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Need input from the other side

I belong in the friends and family forum, but I need a different perspective since I am basically hitting a wall and in so much anguish. My alcoholic ex boyfriend basically abruptly exited my life after begging me to not leave him and to continue the relationship with him. It blindsided me. One week he was begging me to stay and a week later - wham - he had a new girlfriend so he says. I was also very close to his mother for the year I was with him (off and on because of his addiction). I kept waiting for him to hit rock bottom so he could climb out of his addiction and he finally did lose his job and home, but he kept drinking. He may not be now but immediately after those two losses he kept going. He became like a stranger, a monster and started being really ugly and mean and threatened to embarrass me and try to make me lose my job. This is a man who told me I would never know how deeply he loved me and who kept pushing me away to supposedly "protect" me when he was spiraling downwards.

He basically cut me out of his life, then threatened me, I had to send him a cease and desist letter to protect my employment, and then his mother cut contact with me even though he was the one who was doing everything wrong.

My question is, why do alcoholics do this to people they say they love? I'm taking it so personally and I'm in so much pain. I can't seem to get back on track or keep it together. I lost my drivers license this week (can't find it that is), I'm hardly functioning at work and I just missed my flight to a conference. I've never missed a flight. I'm falling apart and I don't know how to climb out of the whole and I'm scared I will never be the same again. I feel damaged and like I've lost my innocence. The pain and betrayal are all consuming.
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Old 10-11-2015, 10:42 AM
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Originally Posted by alybally View Post
I belong in the friends and family forum, but I need a different perspective since I am basically hitting a wall and in so much anguish. My alcoholic ex boyfriend basically abruptly exited my life after begging me to not leave him and to continue the relationship with him. It blindsided me. One week he was begging me to stay and a week later - wham - he had a new girlfriend so he says. I was also very close to his mother for the year I was with him (off and on because of his addiction). I kept waiting for him to hit rock bottom so he could climb out of his addiction and he finally did lose his job and home, but he kept drinking. He may not be now but immediately after those two losses he kept going. He became like a stranger, a monster and started being really ugly and mean and threatened to embarrass me and try to make me lose my job. This is a man who told me I would never know how deeply he loved me and who kept pushing me away to supposedly "protect" me when he was spiraling downwards.

He basically cut me out of his life, then threatened me, I had to send him a cease and desist letter to protect my employment, and then his mother cut contact with me even though he was the one who was doing everything wrong.

My question is, why do alcoholics do this to people they say they love? I'm taking it so personally and I'm in so much pain. I can't seem to get back on track or keep it together. I lost my drivers license this week (can't find it that is), I'm hardly functioning at work and I just missed my flight to a conference. I've never missed a flight. I'm falling apart and I don't know how to climb out of the whole and I'm scared I will never be the same again. I feel damaged and like I've lost my innocence. The pain and betrayal are all consuming.
They do it because alcohol is the most important thing in their lives. Not you. Not love. Alcohol. Introduce him to RR and AVRT and give him a reasonable period to learn it and then an ulltimatum. He quits or you bolt. You must find the mature adult human inside him and that requires you to understand the structural model of addiction. Not the disease model.

Your heartbreak is manifest. As long as he is what we in our tradition call "All Beast" he will never love you.

Your job here is difficult. It might not work out. As long as alcohol is more importatnt than you, it will be tough sledding.
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Old 10-11-2015, 11:31 AM
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I did mean things to people I cared about because I was in denial and defensive projection mode - I blamed everyone else for all my problems, not myself and certainly not my drinking. It's common among more advanced addicts who've accumulated negative consequences, and it sounds like your ex-boyfriend has accumulated quite a few. Honestly the best course is probably to look after yourself, not him. You can't fix him, and if he's damaging you then priority #1 has to be damage control for you. He may or may not stop drinking, and if he does you can re-evaluate, but you don't have to put up with his blame-shifting.
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Old 10-11-2015, 11:52 AM
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Originally Posted by JeffreyAK View Post
I did mean things to people I cared about because I was in denial and defensive projection mode - I blamed everyone else for all my problems, not myself and certainly not my drinking. It's common among more advanced addicts who've accumulated negative consequences, and it sounds like your ex-boyfriend has accumulated quite a few. Honestly the best course is probably to look after yourself, not him. You can't fix him, and if he's damaging you then priority #1 has to be damage control for you. He may or may not stop drinking, and if he does you can re-evaluate, but you don't have to put up with his blame-shifting.
Not to be intrusive, but do you mind telling me generally what mean things you did? I'm hurting and feeling personally rejected and betrayed which is the greatest source of my pain. Trying to scrape and crawl out of the abyss. Any feedback is greatly appreciated and I wish you well.
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Old 10-11-2015, 01:00 PM
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Originally Posted by alybally View Post
Not to be intrusive, but do you mind telling me generally what mean things you did? I'm hurting and feeling personally rejected and betrayed which is the greatest source of my pain. Trying to scrape and crawl out of the abyss. Any feedback is greatly appreciated and I wish you well.
I blamed my wife for driving me to drink, it was her fault and if she had been less or more blah-blah, I wouldn't have needed to drink. I blamed my closest friends for not intervening and saving me from going down the hole, and blamed them again for cutting off contact. They harmed me, I thought, so it was fair to harm them by posting private family information on facebook. I blamed my manager for seeing what was going on and forcing me to go to outpatient treatment - after all I wasn't that bad, it's perfectly legal to drink, and I didn't come to work drunk. I blamed counselors for busting me for drinking in treatment and calling me out, after all I was working on it at my own pace. Etc.

Eventually I was very much alone, and there was no one left to blame. It was a dark place.

That was five years ago, we can get better but we have to stop drinking and stay stopped, and we generally can't do that as long as we're caught up in denial and blame-shifting.

Sounds like you're on the other end of all that. I'm sorry you're catching all the fireballs, if he stops he may come to feel very ashamed of his behavior (I did), or he may not stop and may die one day soon, or kill someone else and wind up in prison. Things can get bad. So, look after yourself, and know that you may well be doing the best thing for him, too, by cutting ties and moving on. What happens in the future, who knows, but my wife is still my wife and my closest friends are still my closest friends, so if things work out someday, great, but he has to stop drinking on his own.

All my opinion of course.
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Old 10-11-2015, 01:24 PM
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Originally Posted by JeffreyAK View Post
I blamed my wife for driving me to drink, it was her fault and if she had been less or more blah-blah, I wouldn't have needed to drink. I blamed my closest friends for not intervening and saving me from going down the hole, and blamed them again for cutting off contact. They harmed me, I thought, so it was fair to harm them by posting private family information on facebook. I blamed my manager for seeing what was going on and forcing me to go to outpatient treatment - after all I wasn't that bad, it's perfectly legal to drink, and I didn't come to work drunk. I blamed counselors for busting me for drinking in treatment and calling me out, after all I was working on it at my own pace. Etc.

Eventually I was very much alone, and there was no one left to blame. It was a dark place.

That was five years ago, we can get better but we have to stop drinking and stay stopped, and we generally can't do that as long as we're caught up in denial and blame-shifting.

Sounds like you're on the other end of all that. I'm sorry you're catching all the fireballs, if he stops he may come to feel very ashamed of his behavior (I did), or he may not stop and may die one day soon, or kill someone else and wind up in prison. Things can get bad. So, look after yourself, and know that you may well be doing the best thing for him, too, by cutting ties and moving on. What happens in the future, who knows, but my wife is still my wife and my closest friends are still my closest friends, so if things work out someday, great, but he has to stop drinking on his own.

All my opinion of course.
You sound very level and safely recovered and I am thrilled for you and your success. May you continue safely down the path of life and your wife is very blessed as well that it all worked out. My guy has pretty much lost everything. He lost his marriage before he met me. Now job and home. He's had DUIs and hurt himself and had to be temporarily committed after threatening suicide. It's a mess and even though he walked away we've mutually cut all ties.

Thank you for some perspective from the other end.
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Old 10-11-2015, 07:01 PM
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aly,
welcome.

of course you take it personally: threats, leaving, ugliness are directed at you.
but here's the thing: it isn't about you.
stay with me here: it isn't about you.
it isn't about you whatsoever.

i didn't want drinking to be the number one priority, but that is how it ended up.
doesn't matter that i would have denied it, or not seen it.
i can see it clearly only in retrospect.

your job is to take care of yourself.
you will not be able to "understand" why alcoholics do this. they/we don't understand it ourselves while we're doing it.

you need to put your well-being first. put your energy into that.

he will or will not quit, will or will not get help to stay that way. his mother may or may not "enable".
these things are out of your control.

he's shown very clearly that he keeps drinking despite important losses.

there is no understanding it. it isn't rational.
the sooner you can accept that, the better your chances of putting that anguish-energy into turning this around for your own benefit.

none of this is about you. it has nothing to do with you.

horrid, isn't it?
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Old 10-11-2015, 10:05 PM
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Originally Posted by fini View Post
aly,
welcome.

of course you take it personally: threats, leaving, ugliness are directed at you.
but here's the thing: it isn't about you.
stay with me here: it isn't about you.
it isn't about you whatsoever.

i didn't want drinking to be the number one priority, but that is how it ended up.
doesn't matter that i would have denied it, or not seen it.
i can see it clearly only in retrospect.

your job is to take care of yourself.
you will not be able to "understand" why alcoholics do this. they/we don't understand it ourselves while we're doing it.

you need to put your well-being first. put your energy into that.

he will or will not quit, will or will not get help to stay that way. his mother may or may not "enable".
these things are out of your control.

he's shown very clearly that he keeps drinking despite important losses.

there is no understanding it. it isn't rational.
the sooner you can accept that, the better your chances of putting that anguish-energy into turning this around for your own benefit.

none of this is about you. it has nothing to do with you.

horrid, isn't it?
Thank you so much for your input, I really appreciate it. Yes, it is horrible and mind boggling. I feel violated by his behavior. And most of all, horribly horribly horribly betrayed.
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Old 10-12-2015, 12:33 AM
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There's lots of reasons, alybally. Part of it is shame. Alcoholics are often deeply ashamed of their drinking on some level, and they sabotage relationships because they don't feel worth. Another reason is pride. They lose control and lose power in a relationship which is threatening to them. This causes them to lash out.

Of course another big issue is that drunks just don't generally make good decisions. Being plastered all the time doesn't help your mind make rational decisions.

I'm sorry you're dealing with this, alybally. Maybe Al-Anon would be a good idea. Obviously I don't know you at all but I do know you don't deserve this treatment- no one does.
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