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Your post could be mine. I am struggling with the same issues. My AH filed for divorce when I asked him to make the choice of alcohol or his family. He chose the alcohol. I am struggling with trying to understand how such a kind, decent and loving husband and father could make that decision. His drinking didn't start until after we had been married for 16 years. I tried to live with it and protect our 2 children from it's effects but it became too much and I had to ask him to make a choice. I didn't start attending Alanon until he left and I am thankful that I have the support from those wonderful people I have met in those meeting rooms. I crawled through those doors the first time and now, 3 months later, I run as fast as I can every Mon and Wed evening to get there. I have let go and let God. That is the most difficult thing I have had to do but that is the only way I can help myself, and in a sense, help him. I am hopeful my AH will make the choice of sobriety. He is trying to control the drinking himself with no support and I know from past experience it won't last. He too wants to remain friends and keep everything the same with the exception he gets to keep drinking. I do not want that, as it is too hard emotionally. We have been married for 19 years and I can't just shut down the feelings I have for him and forget all that we shared and built together. He has alcohol to numb the pain of all of this, although I know he is feeling it just as much as I am, if not worse.He was my soulmate and I am grieving so much for our past life we had together and for the man that I married. I have to trust in God and let go to let him take care of my husband. The feelings of grief are so overwhelming at times.
I completely relate, you are not the only one who has been through this insanity. it makes us insane, going in circles trying to figure it all out.... I love Life is good's post, those al-anon meetings were the ONLY way for me to make peace with it all, this disease makes us sick too, your comment that "he is not ready to get better??" I sincerely hope that YOU are, that YOU commit to caring for yourself with a fellowship that understands. For me, I could NEVER have done it alone. and we never HAVE TO do this alone, not ever again. I also want to add that it helped me sooooooooo much when my sponsor told me to STOP listening to his words. It was confusing when he said he loved me but then behaved the way he did, very unloving -ly, very selfish, self-centered, and dishonestly. I was told to listen MORE to the actions. from that, things made much more sense, I came to realize that he had acted this way forever, it was always all about him. My part was, I was dishonest with myself all those years, acting like it wasn't happening, or that it was okay. I married him even though our courtship before marriage was tumultuous and abusive. I did that to myself, because I held a belief that I only deserved scraps, and that is what he gave me. Now that I am on the other side in recovery, I can share with you that there is an "opportunity" before you to grow in ways you may never have imagined, life is not hopeless. While at the time, it felt like my life was falling apart, it was actually coming together. Allow yourself to grieve. I was often on the floor in the fetal position, sobbing so loudly I'm sure my neighbors could hear. In between those episodes, I still grabbed my al-anon chair at 3-4 meetings a week. And I got out in nature, fresh air and sun are Higher powers soothing medicine.It's going to be okay, really and truly (((hugs)))
The prayer isn't for Higher Power to change our lives, but rather to change us.
Good Job Cinders
HPand the alanon fellowship are walking with you .Remember you are not alone
I can Overcome all things through my HP who strengthens me.
Al-Anon/Alateen Family Group Headquarters, Inc. 800-344-2666
" Pain is inevitable, suffering is optional."
"Serenity is when your body and mind are in the same place."
glad lee wrote:It was confusing when he said he loved me but then behaved the way he did, very unloving -ly, very selfish, self-centered, and dishonestly. I was told to listen MORE to the actions. from that, things made much more sense, I came to realize that he had acted this way forever, it was always all about him. My part was, I was dishonest with myself all those years, acting like it wasn't happening, or that it was okay. I married him even though our courtship before marriage was tumultuous and abusive. I did that to myself, because I held a belief that I only deserved scraps, and that is what he gave me. -- Edited by glad lee on Tuesday 27th of November 2012 09:16:15 AM
It was confusing when he said he loved me but then behaved the way he did, very unloving -ly, very selfish, self-centered, and dishonestly. I was told to listen MORE to the actions. from that, things made much more sense, I came to realize that he had acted this way forever, it was always all about him. My part was, I was dishonest with myself all those years, acting like it wasn't happening, or that it was okay. I married him even though our courtship before marriage was tumultuous and abusive. I did that to myself, because I held a belief that I only deserved scraps, and that is what he gave me. -- Edited by glad lee on Tuesday 27th of November 2012 09:16:15 AM
Wow! This quote really spoke to me. It's exactly what I needed to hear tonight. I spoke earlier today with my AH telling him I just couldn't / wouldn't live this way anymore. I found myself feeling tormented and guilty by his words, but in truth, I know that he has neglected and emotionally abused me for years. I am learning to accept that truth, but it means being completely honest with myself and admitting that for years I was essentially living a lie.
Thanks to all for sharing. It helps so much to hear from others who have found recovery and serenity.
Hugs Cinders, I can absolutely tell you and from all of the wonderful ESH you have already received you are def not alone. After many months of separation (there was a time I could only talk about it in terms of weeks) I am still dealing with the anger, pain, frustration, questions and so on. Yes, it's not good at the same time it's a process. I'm hoping that as the divorce gets closer to being over .. coming from the man who wanted the divorce he certainly is refusing to let go. The saying .. it's hard to get rid of the alcoholic even if they say they want out is so very true. What has helped me in terms of learning to let go of the anger is not to expect that it's just going to be gone in the snap of a finger. I don't have the luxuary of reveling in it either. Just to feel it, know I don't have to act or say anything while I'm in the throws of it. Have a safe place to let it out (for me that's with my sponsor we have a lot of good laughs over some of it, I have a very warped sense of humor). Laughter is a great healer. See what my part is .. I don't have to own the whole enchilada I only have to own my part. There is nothing I could have done that would have ever been good enough to make him choose differently (or anyone else for that matter) when he is active in the disease. I also do not need to romantise (sp) the what if's or what should have, could have, would have been if I had only (fill in the blank). He is going to continue to make crazy decisions that affect the kids and I or not .. it is now my job to protect myself and the kids to the best of my ability. Hopefully once that is done I really do not need to have contact with him. When I was told that in the beginning I thought people were crazy .. LOL .. now I get it. Toby Rice Drew has some great books called Getting Them Sober, at this point the only one I have read is Vol 4 I highly recommend it. It is about divorce, separation and some on dating (personally so not there .. lol). It is ok to feel angry that someone is just blatently making decisions and I don't have a say in it .. the question becomes what do I do with that anger .. after all I'd make a hell of a CNN story .. then I think welllll .. that's probably not a good idea. So if you hear of someone burning a rackety old truck down with the song Burn Baby Burn .. in the back ground and the helicopters are circling the farm .. I've reached my limit. Every day that dang story is not on the news is a good day for healing!!! :) When I am ready to forgive him in my situation I will start with myself first. I need to forgive myself for beating myself up unnecessarially and not being perfect (there is a HUGE list of things that fall under those two main catagories). When I can forgive myself then I will be more ready to forgive him and there may be things that take a very long time to forgive in those situations. My very wise sponsor recently shared in a meeting that she has only recently moved things from her "hell no" list to her "maybe" list and she's been in program for over 20 years. I am sooooo grateful for that share because it tells me this is a process of progress not perfection and when I am ready not when anyone else is ready .. when I am ready I will be willing to let it all go. I do mean all of it .. now .. LOL .. I may be on my death bed doing it .. before I leave this planet it will be all of it. In the mean time I can choose to be happy. I can choose to have a wonderful day regardless of the chaos that is reigning down on me else where or he's trying to cause. I am blessed that I have choices I never knew I had. I am grateful that I've come so far in a relatively short time (not counting the 20+ years of individual counseling that probably saved me a time or two). Every day I can look at my children and know he he did me a HUGE favor as I watch them light up when we spend time together. I can choose not to obsess over what he is or is not doing. Today I can focus on what is so much more important to me and for me. I do feel sorry for him it's more pity than anything else that he can't see what he's missing out on. I see the disease. I hurt that it hurts my children. I guess at this point I'm very detachated (it's what has been called the gold plated character defect for lack of a better term) and I really don't feel much else for him. I'm hoping that someday sooner than later I can because it will mark new healing for me. I just watch and think .. well I don't think nice things right now and can do so without bitterness it's more what a sad man that he can't see what he threw away. Maybe some day I will look at him and think nice thoughts .. it's just not where I am at .. and I choose to love myself where I am at currently. Anyway, it really does get better and life continues to move forward .. and I can choose to let go or be dragged down the path of life. Hugs P :)
Stepping onto a brand-new path is difficult, but not more difficult than remaining in a situation, which is not nurturing to the whole woman.- Maya Angelo