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Post Info TOPIC: The Difference?


Senior Member

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Posts: 346
Date:
The Difference?


It's been a rough 2 days... Lord how I hate paydays. I have begun calling them "Drunk Thursdays," but lately it's more like "Drunk Thursday/Fridays.

It was especially fun to wake up this morning and have my AH cheerfully tell me, "Good morning!" Then wonder how come I didn't respond in kind. I mean, I did say "Morning," so I wasn't rude, but I am still reeling over how the night went down. When he asked what's wrong, I just took a deep breath and told him, "Last night was just a real bitch to live through, and I am still processing it, so please just let me." THANK YOU AL-ANON!

So back to my post... this is really for those of you who are choosing to live with your qualifier. How do you know that you are living your truth and using Al-Anon and not just enabling your qualifier to drink?

I thought that I could do this... live with an alcoholic... if I used my Al-Anon tools. But in other posts I could see that those doing this successfully had a means to "get away" from their Q, even if it was only to their own room. I have tried to create a space in my back patio that would serve the same purpose, but it doesn't serve at night or when I want to sleep. Last night got me to thinking that the slogan "Nothing Changes if Nothing Changes," would really apply to my situation right now, and that got me to thinking how much am I enabling him to continue drinking just by detaching and living in the same house? I mean, every week it's the same pattern. What is my part in this? Am I actually enabling him?

So MIP family, what things prove to you that you are not enabling your qualifier when you have chosen to live with an alcoholic.

Thank you in advance... really doubting my choice and needing this ESH.cry



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Music makes my soul soar!


Senior Member

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Posts: 358
Date:

I think, so long as you entertain the idea that anything you do will help/cause/allow him to drink or not drink, you're kind of enabling in the sense that you're making your decisions from a "how will this effect him" standpoint. In my experience, as long as I had that mindset, everything still came down to him and what he did and even if it was subtle or unconscious, it meant he had all of my power and on some level we both knew it.

I'd suggest re-thinking your question along the lines of "does continuing to live with him benefit me more than it hurts me?" or "do I have reasons for wanting/needing to stay?". So long as your answer is yes then you're doing it for you and it really doesn't matter if this enables him to drink or not...you could just as easily tell yourself that "if I leave he will drink even more". Truth is, what you do isn't going to have much impact on whether he wants to do one thing or another. There's a lot of freedom in realising that you just aren't responsible for whether he drinks or not...it's like thinking the wind will blow more or less if you get a weather vane, or don't, kinda

What do you want to do?

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Senior Member

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Posts: 346
Date:

Thank you for your ESH, MissM.

I hear what your saying. I know the focus is supposed to be on me, and I think I might of phrased the question incorrectly. I was choosing to stay with my AH b/c it was easier for me and my child.
We've been through the whole state assistance thing in a past addiction issue, and it was the worst time of my life. The only reason I was able to stay in our home was b/c my parents paid our rent for 3 months (God bless them!). I had vowed to myself that I would never go there again. And yet, there I would be if I choose to leave him. I thought, why would I do that to myself? So I have been trying to do what others have done - live with their alcoholic.

But I am finding that harder than I even imagined. So I was trying to examine MY motives here. And in doing so, I came to the thought that in making it easier on me, I am actually allowing my AH to slowly kill himself by drinking. My internal monologue would then chime in, "But other people do it, why isn't enabling for them?" So that is what sprung the question. I think it's because I am just not sure if I am enabling or not.

And yes, in reading the last paragraph back, it does appear that I am thinking about him... but if I am going to be brutally honest, it's really about me...because I am afraid to be poor and unable to afford rent and subsequently move away from this little house/area that I love... so I am trying to stay with my AH... not out of love for him, but out of fear of my reality without his income. So what does that make me? His enabler? Because in examining my motives, I posed the question to myself... "Would you allow this or live this if money wasn't a huge factor and you could thrive/raise your kid without him?" The answer is always, "No." So maybe I am feeling guilty?


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Music makes my soul soar!


Senior Member

Status: Offline
Posts: 346
Date:

I just re-read your post in relation to my answer, and I guess I answered your question. I am doing this for ME and my kid. But, maybe now I am wondering if it is really worth it?

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Music makes my soul soar!


~*Service Worker*~

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Posts: 7617
Date:

PnP - for me, the only way I found peace and sanity was by working the program. Meetings and step work with a sponsor gave me myself back, which then gave me the power of choice. So - with a bit of recovery under my belt, I was able to literally leave if the house was too crazy and spend the night with a gal pal. I would shut off my phone or block calls and return when I was ready to do so. I completely separated myself (Physically at times, until I could detach mentally) from the disease.

As I got stronger, I was able to say calmly that I have no interest in smelling alcohol when I am trying to sleep. When I suspected, I just put a pillow/blanket on the couch. As I got stronger yet, I was able to enforce no using in my home with my children. As I grew even stronger, I created a man cave, and put a 50 inch TV there. I told my husband it was his area to do as he wanted, and that I would not clean up after him. This of course became his favorite place when I suggested I no longer would be around any alcohol, consumed or not.

We each have our limits and we each have our own journeys. As I got calmer, stronger and more solid in my recovery journey, things calmed down and while I didn't get sober loved ones, I got respect enough that they embrace my boundaries. Enabling to me is doing for them that which they should do for themselves. I stopped picking up, cleaning up, making up excuses, etc. When others asked about one of mine, I suggested they ask them. I did not be extra quiet when someone was sleeping one off, nor did I go out of my way to be loud. I literally just lived my life as I needed to and called my sponsor when I got confused/uncertain.

Sorry that there is a pattern you are seeing - I went through some of those, and used the Serenity Prayer to manage as good as I could. I can't change others, but I can change me....(((Hugs)))

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Practice the PAUSE...Pause before judging.  Pause before assuming.  Pause before accusing.  Pause whenever you are about to react harshly and you will avoid doing and saying things you will later regret.  ~~~~  Lori Deschene

 

 



Senior Member

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Posts: 358
Date:

I think, if you planned a certain life together and had children there's no shame/guilt in not being prepared/able to just walk away and do it all yourself. Your reasons/needs are pretty understandable! My ex husband left me with nothing but the clothes on my back and our baby...and then he came back and "borrowed" the rent money I had aside to put a deposit on a new car for himself..and left us again- for good. I ended up literally homeless with a baby and slept on a living room floor for several months with my child in a portable cot next to me. We had nothing- he took absolutely everything. So, yeah, I get it. I would never want to go back to that kind of helpless poverty. Totally valid reasons for staying...I'm just saying, it's OK to focus on your needs/wants and the different ways you might be able to meet them and never mind about enabling. If he wants to drink he'll find a way to do so regardless of what you do.



-- Edited by MissM on Saturday 17th of June 2017 01:31:29 PM

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Senior Member

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Posts: 346
Date:

Oh, MissM!! Your situation was so much worse/harder than mine!! At least my kid was 10... at least I had the help of my parents. You have my admiration!!!! You are a strong woman!

And now I see what you are saying... don't even bother with the thought of, "Am I an enabler?" That is just causing me pain. If I can leave and that is what I want, then I should do it. If I can't then I should do what I need to make life easier... b/c he will use no matter what I do or think! It is more about getting into a different headspace....Ding, ding, ding! LOL!

Thank you, IamHere. Because of your shares, I have been trying some of the things you utilize. I have told my AH when you drink, I don't want to be here," so I have taken my son and my dog and gone over to my parent's house. Or my son and I have gone out to eat a looooong dinner. I have even slept on our incredibly uncomfortable, broken down recliner couch. I do find it hard to just up and leave though, as I have to think of taking my son, and I feel sick to my stomach leaving my dog there. Thursday night she was so anxious that she was overheating! She's a Boxer. I had to take her outside and cool her off with water. She practically runs out the screen door when my son and I leave!

I guess I should think about getting a more comfortable couch. LOL! I don't make excuses for him anymore, I don't cover-up, and I try not to clean up either. But our house is very small, and sometimes his messes impact my serenity... so I clean b/c I need it. We don't have any extra space so I can't hole him up there. I have asked for him to close the bedroom door... but he either forgets (b/c he's too drunk) and yells at me for closing the door, or balls his eyes out b/c he doesn't want to be separated from the family. I guess he is just not respecting my boundaries yet.

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Music makes my soul soar!
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