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Post Info TOPIC: A Vicious Cycle


Veteran Member

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Posts: 65
Date:
A Vicious Cycle


When I am caught up in the obsession of what my AH is or isn't doing,there's problems between us(of course).My controlling ways cause many huge arguments and make me feel miserable.If I try to talk to him about anything he completely shuts me out and gives me the silent treatment.It's like a punishment he does to show me I had better not try to talk about anything he does I don't like.Even if I try to ask him about taking the trash out,it can turn into an argument because in his words,I'm nagging and controlling.

 

When I back away,detach,let go and focus on myself there's problems too.He becomes clingy,wanting to be with me every moment.He worries something is "wrong",that I'm mad,that I'm gonna leave him,etc. He acts like a sad little puppy following me around,wanting my attention.He suddenly wants to talk about our problems,work on our marriage,and tries to act like the perfect husband,doing everything he needs to be doing around the house(and expecting praise and acknowledgement for it) and says he's trying.He just doesn't leave me alone or give me space.He pushes and pushes and I feel like he's hounding me with asking if something's wrong,am I mad,etc.And then I do end up getting mad eventually because I just want him to leave me be.And then we do usually end up arguing.

 

There seems to be no in between,it's these two things over and over.A vicious cycle.I feel like I can't win for losing,like I am not even allowed to detach from him.Or maybe he's trying to prevent any changes?It's hard for me to see this for what it is while caught up in it,so please enlighten me with your esh.I am beyond frustrated.



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~*Service Worker*~

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A viscious circle for sure. Its what we call the alcoholic 2 step. If you havent tried face 2 face meetings i hope you will consider. Its a better circle for reasoning things through with others who understand. Relate to the above. Living with an loving an alcoholic is too much for most of us without spiritual help (hope)



-- Edited by MeTwo2 on Monday 5th of March 2018 10:57:34 AM

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Bo


~*Service Worker*~

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What memories this brings back...thank you for posting.

It has been many years since I was in the "obsession" of what the alcoholic is doing, not doing, where they are, who are they with, and so on. Yes, I was trying to control so much then -- directly, indirectly, passive aggressively, you name it, whatever method of attempting control there was, I was doing it! I was being abused as well -- verbally, mentally. 

90 days later, I was on the road to recovery. I was letting go. I found there were no in-betweens either. But that's part of the dynamic. Letting go, detaching, etc. -- the alcoholic is going to be upset, mad, etc. My sponsor used to say if the alcoholic is mad or upset with you...it means you are doing something right! LOL.

I set boundaries. They helped me deal with both extremes. I was healthy to the point where I didn't react just because the alcoholic was upset with me. I also learned that detachment came in two forms -- physical and mental. I had to learn both. I didn't care the alcoholic was angry at me for me coming to them, or them coming to me. She was angry? OK, so that's her problem. Not mine. I don't accept unacceptable behavior either, so I don't get dragged into that.

My experience is that it was the alcoholic who wanted what they wanted. Status quo. To have her cake and eat it to. She didn't want me getting better. She wanted me in the same role I was always in...so she could continue living the way she was living. Just me and my experience. More to follow...

 



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Bo

Keep coming back...

God, grant me the serenity...to accept the PEOPLE I cannot change...the courage to change the ONE I can...and the wisdom to know it's ME...

 



~*Service Worker*~

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SS - I'm sorry you feel stuck in a detachment 'tug of war' - it's not a good feeling and that's OK....what recovery has taught me is not everything I should do for self-care will be comfortable and not everything I need (vs. want) will be delivered upon request. What truly, truly helped me more than most tools with detaching in a healthy, pleasant way was my sponsor. Meetings always help too but I would get really overwhelmed with all the great ESH and just wasn't sure how to apply any of it to my world. Most of this was because I was still a bit crazy and another part was I still wanted 'my way, my will, my peace, my, my, my...' - about my ego.

What happened here was I just did what needed to be done and stopped worrying about split efforts. If the trash needed to go out, I did it. And I did it with a smile on my face as I was usually talking with my HP often/always. In time, my AH would do the same. If the trash was full, he'd do it without being asked/told. Our trash day is the same day and has been for 15+ years. No longer is it his job or my job - it is just something that needs to be done. If I wanted to sit here and consider who contributes what, I have no doubt my brain would say I do way, way, way more. Instead of seeing this as unfair, I choose to see it as contributing to my well-being as well as my sanity.

I suffered from low self-esteem because of this disease. I wanted approval and perhaps appreciation from others and maybe needed it. The program and a good sponsor helped me find my esteem within. I heard long ago that we develop esteem by doing esteem-able acts. How important is it would fly into my brain when I began to get bothered about something, anything. Also, my sponsor suggested I ask myself what can I do different today than I've done before?

It can be really, really tough to detach from the dysfunction of another in the home. A sponsor who knows all about you, your circumstances, etc. can be really helpful in strategies for boundaries and detachment. Keep doing new things until something sticks and works - in my home, things did get worse before they got better yet with consistency, sanity did return and was restored and now the chaos/dysfunction is the exception vs. the norm...(((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

 

 



~*Service Worker*~

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I have been in a similar situation(s) and I'm sorry you are going through this... Sending you cyberhugs, (((SS))). I tried living ODAT then, as I still do, which is very important for me to stay as sane as I can be, and to focus on myself, what I need to take care of myself, physically, mentally, every way. This is hard stuff, no question about it... You are aware of what is happening and that is very important, that's the beginning of any change. I also suggest getting a sponsor if you don't have one yet and start working the steps. This is already such a healing experience for me, and I'm still on Step 3. Keep coming back!

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~*Service Worker*~

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Big hugs SS,

I find that dance to be the "change back dance" at least that's what my sponsor called it. It means you are doing the right thing. Change takes time to adjust to, especially consistent change. What I have found to be true for me is I want to believe what my XAH says and he believes what I show him which is completely ironic if you ask me. In that regard I try to be more of what my XAH is looking for .. actions. When I now see the actions of others pushing back against the change .. I'm doing something right for me.

You keep doing you.

Big hugs S :)

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"I cannot learn other people's lessons for them.  They must do the work for themselves, and they will do it when they are ready." - Louise Hay



Veteran Member

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Thanks everyone.I appreciate it.

I am going to keep doing what I have been *trying* to do,which is to just detach from him,and maybe eventually I will be able to not let his following me around and being clingy get to me.

Over the weekend we were watching a movie together,I was actually enjoying it,but as soon as I heard the sound of a cap twisting I got up and went to the other end of the house for the night,got busy doing other things and went to bed a little early.I didn't say anything at all about his drinking,I didn't say I was leaving the room or tell him why,I just did it.  It felt good to just walk away from it like that with no drama.The next day he was bragging on himself because he wasn't a jerk while drinking,said that I could have stayed in the same room and it would have been fine,that if I would just stay around him when he drinks again I will see for myself that he doesn't act like an idiot now.

I will leave the room the next time too.I made the decision that if he's going to drink I don't want to be around him.And I have been sticking to it.I have a feeling he's going to start nagging me about it,trying to coax me to.

Maybe I do need to keep doing what I need to do.Whether he likes it or not.



-- Edited by SoggySlippers on Monday 5th of March 2018 10:13:51 PM

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~*Service Worker*~

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YAY SOGGY!!  One day at a time only...I love the sound of your courage and I laugh to myself knowing that he will never be over your getting over it.  

I'm in support...you go Girl!!! ((((  smile  )))) 



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Bo


~*Service Worker*~

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Oh the dance. Yes, it is a vicious cycle. When "it" was going on with me, I experienced the cycle not only when my wife was drinking, but even when she wasn't. It was drinking and it was behavioral. Even when she wasn't drinking, she still had the 'ism's and impacted her, me, and us. Early on, before I got better -- yes, I was into the obsession. I'd watch her, wonder where she was going, I'd listen in when she was in the bathroom, in another room, etc. I don't know why. I wasn't going to confront her. I had in the past, but at a certain point, I no longer did. When I found hidden bottles, empty ones, and ones that still had liquor remaining in them -- I didn't leave them out in the open to let her know I found them. I just left them where I found them. Was it "don't ask a question if you really don't want to know the answer" -- maybe in part. When I would hear that one kitchen drawer open -- the one where the bottle opener was -- my heart would drop. I'd be angry, sad, afraid, and disappointed, and more, all at same time.

When she wasn't drinking, she was on edge, agitated, not her usual self. She became OCD about things. She developed very weird habits, around food, smoking, other behaviors. I always tried to keep her entertained, happy, so maybe she wouldn't have a reason to drink. I tried to keep us busy. I tried many weird, irrational things. Then, when I stayed out of her way, and detached, she became very co-dependent. She wanted us to do everything together. She followed me around everywhere. Even when I would go to the bathroom, she'd follow me, go into a nearby room to do something and then she'd be nearby when I left the bathroom. My life was completely unmanageable.

When I was going to meetings, she sabotaged my efforts. She didn't want me to go. She was offended, insulted. She said that me going made her feel worse. I know, for certain, she didn't want me going -- because she didn't want me or anything to change! She wanted what she wanted and she was afraid I would start to get better and no longer enable her -- not enable in the traditional sense -- but be who I had been for years. No way did she want me to change.

But, I did. I learned to detach. Whether she got angry or not. I learned both physical and emotional detachment. I learned how not to contribute, how not to participate and not to play a role in all that was going on. I learned how to set boundaries -- real boundaries -- for me! Not for her or about her. For me. I learned about how to allow her to experience the consequences of her own actions and decisions. She did not like that either. Not at all. But I kept on.

I got better. I got healthy. It worked...because I did the work and worked it.



__________________

Bo

Keep coming back...

God, grant me the serenity...to accept the PEOPLE I cannot change...the courage to change the ONE I can...and the wisdom to know it's ME...

 



~*Service Worker*~

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Posts: 601
Date:

I think you are doing great, SS! When I finally started to honor my boundaries to take care of myself, my ex-abf didn't like it too. He didn't like me going to Alanon meetings and he didn't like or understand the changes that were happening with me. After some weeks that were hard because he protestedand threw tantrums and blamed a boundary gradually became norm. Granted some boundaries he continued to cross with abandon, and in the end I left because he didn't let me sleep often. I was often sleep deprived, and no talking changed his behavior. I was powerless over this behavior of his and his choice to continue doing it despite anything I said.

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Veteran Member

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I'm actually smiling right now,which has been a rare thing lately.

Thanks for the replies here,really,and keep them coming if you want.Knowing others understand and reading similar stories is so helpful.

I honestly thought my situation was unique.And that made me feel so frustrated and alone.

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~*Service Worker*~

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Remember what the smile feels like and looks like and such so you can continually practice it even without cause.  Lessons from my past and present.  Not having a special reason to smile and only because I knew how and could was Al-Anon rocket science for me.  

I love the experience of being asked,  "Why are you smiling"?  and the response..."Because I can"...Keep coming back...(((((hugs))))) wink



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~*Service Worker*~

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(((SS))) - I love your share - it shows for me how Al-Anon works....we do discover that no matter how alone and unique we feel, we find comfort that others truly do understand and can relate...keep doing you and keep practicing the program. It may not feel like it but it does get easier and more comfortable.

Jerry - that's awesome!! And so true!

__________________

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

 

 



Veteran Member

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I liked that Jerry."because I can".

Last night my husband was looking at me like I have 2 heads or something,or like I am suddenly mentally unstable for not reacting to things I normally would react to.He gave me this look of concern,like there's something 'wrong' with me.

But actually,he probably should be giving me those looks when I do react instead of when I don't.This program is a real eye opener when it comes to realizing just how messed up and dysfunctional things are.

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Veteran Member

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Thankful for this post and responses today! It is a weird two step that is happening. SS I chuckled a bit to myself when I read your statement about detaching and the clingy feeling. When my A is at the house (not drinking but here) its like I have to sit in the room or hes texting me where am I, whats wrong, I must not want him here etc... and sometimes Im simply In the BATHROOM. MY GOSH. hes worse than the kids I swear. Literally sparked a fight one day and off he went, interesting to see it for what it is now- his pass to himself to go (and drink I guess although I dont worry about what he is or isnt doing as long as its jot here) ...

I like what Jerry said too- why am I smiling? Bc I chose to. I make a lot of conscious choices to be happy... sometimes I have to chose it every min. I dont have to be upset bc he is- I dont have to get sucked into the insanity... my favorite line is I have choices so good for you when you got up and simply walked in the other room!

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