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Post Info TOPIC: Frustrated


Member

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Frustrated


I have family visiting for the week and tonight we are ordering dinner as a pre anniversary-post birthday celebration. My AH said he was going to join us but I didn't get my hopes up. About 20 minutes before we are preparing to order he messages and says "I'm not coming it's taking too long" which is code for I want to start drinking. I figured this was going to happen so I'm not letting it bother me. What is bothering me is that he said " I'm home alone again and bored". Now to put this in context my company only arrived last night so he's been alone today only. It's just that I feel guilty for leaving him alone now and I feel like I should go home...but for what to watch him drink!? How do you guys deal with feelings of guilt?

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~*Service Worker*~

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I eventually learned to deal with feelings of guilt by remembering that I deserve a good life. I deserve to have nice times, to not have all my plans disrupted, to have self-care... all these are my rights as a human being. I am not more important than someone else, but I am not less important. I would actually say to myself, "I am SOMEBODY!" There is no shame in enjoying a nice dinner with your visiting family, whom I assume you don't get to see all the time. You deserve it, and a loving person would be glad for you that you can spend time with your family, even if they don't choose to join you.

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Member

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You're 100% right I don't get to see my family often. Once every 3 years if I'm lucky. I know that I should be enjoying myself but I feel like there is a dark cloud hanging over me now. I guess it gets easier with time but right now it feels crappy

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~*Service Worker*~

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Al-Anon reminds me I am not responsible for other people's feelings, nor are they responsible for mine.

Okay, I'll put it another way - someone may say or do something that initially upsets me - or puts the feelings in me, but once I have those feelings, they're my responsibility to deal with them. I can exercise my choices from that point forward and choose to be happy or choose to resist what I'm feeling, etc.

Someone said it in a different post: Pain is inevitable. Suffering is optional. And while that applies to me - it also applies to everyone else, too, including the alcoholic.

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~*Service Worker*~

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I know what you mean about dark clouds. Worry about what might come later, disappointment that this isn't the scene I imagined myself in. Another viewpoint could be the bright side: Did his decision avoid a drunken scene at your family gathering?

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Bo


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Surfergirl wrote:

I have family visiting for the week and tonight we are ordering dinner as a pre anniversary-post birthday celebration. My AH said he was going to join us but I didn't get my hopes up. About 20 minutes before we are preparing to order he messages and says "I'm not coming it's taking too long" which is code for I want to start drinking. I figured this was going to happen so I'm not letting it bother me. What is bothering me is that he said " I'm home alone again and bored". Now to put this in context my company only arrived last night so he's been alone today only. It's just that I feel guilty for leaving him alone now and I feel like I should go home...but for what to watch him drink!? How do you guys deal with feelings of guilt?


 

Point of clarification -- he's home, alone, and bored, by choice. That was up to him. Many times alcoholics make a choice so that they can be alone, in a negative place, bored, whatever...so that they can drink, but to further clarify, so they can complain first, and then drink so their drinking is justified. Even if that's not the case -- he had a choice. You didn't leave him alone. He chose not to come and join. 

Apply the steps -- step one -- acceptance...powerlessness...complete and total...and then surrender to it...and then let it go. Go and enjoy your evening with your family!!!



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Bo

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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...

 

Bo


~*Service Worker*~

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By the way -- if this were a child who was upstairs in their room and texted and said "I am alone and bored" -- you could reply and say, "then come downstairs and join us" and if the chose not to, then that was their choice. I hate to oversimplify, but he has far more choices than a child.

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Bo

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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...

 



Member

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Thank you all so much. Bo, you're so right he could have joined us for dinner and he could have spent the day at the lake with us too. He chose to lay around the house doing nothing. The main problem for him is there is no drinking at my parents house so he has to stay sober all day waiting to come over. He doesn't drink before going out which I appreciate. I have no interest in an embarrassing scene. I'm still very new here but I am pretty proud of myself. Before I would have come home right away like I was a child being summoned. I've stayed and am enjoying good food and great company.

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Bo


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Surfergirl wrote:

Thank you all so much. Bo, you're so right he could have joined us for dinner and he could have spent the day at the lake with us too. He chose to lay around the house doing nothing. The main problem for him is there is no drinking at my parents house so he has to stay sober all day waiting to come over. He doesn't drink before going out which I appreciate. I have no interest in an embarrassing scene. I'm still very new here but I am pretty proud of myself. Before I would have come home right away like I was a child being summoned. I've stayed and am enjoying good food and great company.


 

I hear you, loud and clear. It is still HIS CHOICE. You focused on YOU -- and that's great! Keep up the great work...on YOU. Before you would have been people-pleasing, co-dependent, allowing him, his choices, his actions, his decisions, to dictate what you did. He makes you feel guilty and you do what he wants to make those feelings go away. Well, this time, you didn't!!! Great for YOU. You have a lot to be proud of!!!



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Bo

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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...

 

Bo


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In my experience, this will happen again...he will be upset you didn't come home. He will use guilt, manipulation, blame, anger, sadness, and everything else -- just to get you to do what he wants, so that he can drink, and he can do what he wants to do! It's the dance. He wants what he wants and he wants you to play a role in that, and he manipulates you so that you play that role. I did that for years. This is just one thing that I experienced in circumstances like this. 

Program -- work it -- it works.

It is up to you.



-- Edited by Bo on Wednesday 8th of August 2018 05:51:12 PM

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Bo

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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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Surfergirl I'm glad you decided to stay and enjoy your family,
Sounds like the right thing to do..
Love all the esh givin above......hugs to you and family.....LU

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I've never regretted taking the high road. ~



Member

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I feel so proud of myself right now and over something so silly. People that don't live with the disease would never understand what an accomplishment tonight was. Tomorrow I have a long day at the hospital with my Dad and about 4 hours to sit around waiting so I am going to immerse myself in more Al Anon reading. I don't only want to just survive anymore, I want to thrive!

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~*Service Worker*~

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Good for you! Celebrate those little steps. They're huge in the big picture!

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surfergirl - good on you for staying with family and for enjoying yourself. Love that you want to spend more time understanding Al-Anon. Embracing recovery has been a game changer for me! Keep doing you, one day at a time! Celebrate all/any change - that's where it all starts, small changes with a different goal in mind.

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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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Excellent support for him, allowing him to make choices about what happens for him....YAY.  Let him own the consequences.  I remember turning my alcoholic/addicts responsibilities back over to her and dang if she didn't get clean and sober in the greatest of ways.   (((((hugs))))) smile



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Jerry F


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How do you guys deal with feelings of guilt? 

 

I do a step 4 on it...and lots of self talk....WHY do I feel guilty for not wanting to do or participate in something that CLEARLY is not my cuppa tea??? and I think, for me, anyway, if I even smelled of taking care of me, my FOO guilted me big time..I felt guilty for being ALIVE...for needing food, essentials...

going back to the origins of my "when it all started---my developing these negative feelings about me" in step 4 has helped me unravel all the false information that I was fed as a kid and came to believe because how could THEY be wrong???   and even an older person who happens to marry into the disease and otherwise had a not too bad life growing up ( I knew a gal who was just this portrait)  she moves in with an alcoholic and he little by little "guilts" her for wanting her needs met, wanting respect, decent treatment and he little by little wore her down, so after a few years, being with him, she changed and I was saddened to have been a witness to it...I grew up with the shame based stuff, so yea, I perpetuated it in my adult life because I knew no other, but my BFF back then did not...however her mother was remote...kids were meant to be seen, not necessarily heard, so yea, there again, even tho there was no real bad abuse, she learned to feel guilty if she expressed a need or expressed that she didn't want to do something......She got into al-anon and I watched her get better...change for the better....assert herself....take care of herself....but she had to do the steps, all of them a few times and work with recovery partners to arrive at that point were one is NEVER to feel guilty for being honest with themselves and their feelings and their needs and their boundaries....

as long as I am not harming another creature, I am going to pursue what is rightfully mine by universal right and if another does not like it??? I'm sorry, but I am going to live and live as "OK" as i can....I do a lot of self talk..journalling and sharing with safe others..."quicky" step 4, step 10's to clarify, why do I feel guilty when I am only taking good care of myself w/out impinging on another's rights/boundaries

I guess that is what I use for my "measuring stick"  am I harming another creature??? am i derelict in any right responsibility????  am I taking more than what I fairly need???? just some ???s I ask me when the "guilts" kick in and try to thwart my living the life I deserve...

IN SUPPORT 



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Rose:

*** KEEP IT SIMPLE***



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I just wanted to also chime in here and say, "GREAT JOB!"

I too, was like you. I allowed my SO to dictate my moods, what I would do/not do for so many years! He was sad, I was sad...he was bored, I went out of my way and over the top to help him not be bored... all to my detriment.

It wasn't until I entered the rooms of Al-Anon did I see what I was doing TO MYSELF! Then and only then was I able to begin to use the tool of detachment. I eventually learned that what I wanted was just as important, and my SO had a choice as well. Like Bo said, he could come and join the family good times, or choose to stay home so he could drink... HIS CHOICE. Such a new concept for me at the time!

You are a newbie, yet you are getting it!!! Good for you!!!

Stay strong in this "new" way of being... Bo is SO RIGHT when he talks of the alcoholic laying more guilt at your feet. As you detach and get stronger in your own self, your alcoholic will want things back to the way they were... so they can drink. When that happens, use the tools from Program and come here and vent.

All my best to you, SurferG!!!

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Music makes my soul soar!

"The TRUTH is like a lion; you don't have to defend it. Let it loose; it will defend itself." St. Augustine



Member

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I so appreciate everyone's encouragement. Sadly he's doing the same guilt trip to me today as I had to accompany my father to a test to see if his cancer has spread. So while my father is undergoing a bone scan he calls to complain that he's picking up my slack so he can't drink lol!! He literally said that. This one is a no brainer to me. My father's health will always take precedence over his beer. Wow this disease can really make you crazy if you let it and I did for far too long!

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Oh my - alcoholics are so baffling. I never ceases to amaze me how selfish this disease is. The alcoholics get tunnel vision - all they can see is what is the path to their next drink.

I'm glad you have your priorities straight. So sweet of you to be there for your father in what I'm sure is a scary time. I hope he gets good news.

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Thank you Aloha! We have our fingers crossed for my Dad. When you take a step back, even the small step I have taken, it's amazing what you see. His moods have always determined mine. A couple weeks ago I would have been hurt, upset and angry. Today I not only put my Dad first but came home and said I was leaving to spend time with my family tonight. He's not happy, trying to guilt me, getting angry but it will not stop me. My family is not getting any younger and health problems abound. I'll be damned if a beer is going to take priority over that!

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Sending prayers for you and your father Surfergirl.....and again - kudos for keeping yourself focused on your priorities instead of the insanity....(((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

 

 

Bo


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Surfergirl wrote:

I so appreciate everyone's encouragement. Sadly he's doing the same guilt trip to me today as I had to accompany my father to a test to see if his cancer has spread. So while my father is undergoing a bone scan he calls to complain that he's picking up my slack so he can't drink lol!! He literally said that. This one is a no brainer to me. My father's health will always take precedence over his beer. Wow this disease can really make you crazy if you let it and I did for far too long!


 

I am sorry...but...when I read this...I just couldn't help but laugh...almost hysterically. LOL. I know, I know, pray for them. Wish good things for them. Pray they find recovery...I know, LOL.

Keep up the great work Surfergirl...the great work ON and FOR YOU.



-- Edited by Bo on Thursday 9th of August 2018 02:46:58 PM

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Bo

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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...

 



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No worries Bo, I had to laugh when he said that. I know this disease is crazy but come on!! He really didn't have to say it, I knew why he was so crabby but to actually say it...out loud...and not realize how insane that sounds. The worst part is that he complained like crazy about my leaving again, guilt, ultimatums, the works but by the time I was ready to leave he had had enough beer that everything was grand again. He was all "have a good time". Crazy...just plain crazy!

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Surfergirl wrote:

I so appreciate everyone's encouragement. Sadly he's doing the same guilt trip to me today as I had to accompany my father to a test to see if his cancer has spread. So while my father is undergoing a bone scan he calls to complain that he's picking up my slack so he can't drink lol!! He literally said that. This one is a no brainer to me. My father's health will always take precedence over his beer. Wow this disease can really make you crazy if you let it and I did for far too long!


 I think that is one of the most selfish statements - both in context and time frame -  I have read on this board!

Kudos to you for holding strong and leaving the house to visit with your family. I am praying that your father gets the "all clear" regarding his cancer.

Peace, SG!



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Music makes my soul soar!

"The TRUTH is like a lion; you don't have to defend it. Let it loose; it will defend itself." St. Augustine

Bo


~*Service Worker*~

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JerryF wrote:

Excellent support for him, allowing him to make choices about what happens for him....YAY.  Let him own the consequences.  I remember turning my alcoholic/addicts responsibilities back over to her and dang if she didn't get clean and sober in the greatest of ways.   (((((hugs))))) smile


 

Jerry, thank you so very much for sharing this. I always found it ironic -- and difficult -- that while detaching, not enabling, and just not contributing or playing a role in the alcoholic's "stuff"...the alcoholic was so angry at me, lashed out at me, told me I was abandoning them, no longer loved them, and more. It was not easy, not at all, for me to "allow" the alcoholic to feel and experience the consequences of their own actions and decisions. As I did it, I was the bad guy. I was at fault. I was blamed for the decision the alcoholic made, which she decided on her own; and then I got blamed for the fallout, aftermath, and consequences. It was a no-win situation for me. But, I did it. And, I kept doing it. When she hit rock bottom...when she was finally sick and tired of being sick and tired...then, and only then...when she was ready, when she wanted to...she made her own decision...to get better, to get clean and sober.

Thanks again Jerry.



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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...

 

Bo


~*Service Worker*~

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Surfergirl wrote:

No worries Bo, I had to laugh when he said that. I know this disease is crazy but come on!! He really didn't have to say it, I knew why he was so crabby but to actually say it...out loud...and not realize how insane that sounds. The worst part is that he complained like crazy about my leaving again, guilt, ultimatums, the works but by the time I was ready to leave he had had enough beer that everything was grand again. He was all "have a good time". Crazy...just plain crazy!


 

Great job Surfergirl!!! Look at how much better you feel. Look at how much better your attitude and mindset is. That is amazing!!! You did amazing!!! Keep it up.



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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...

 



Senior Member

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Bo when I expected the anger it was normal and didn't throw me off...it was when I didn't expect it or thought it wouldn't, shouldn't, couldn't be used that I dressed my self for war and became another person I didn't like.  "Accepting the "fact of the situation" is what I was taught rather than the morality of it became reality and I stopped participating in arguments.  My blood pressure rarely went up.  (((wink)))



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Jerry F
Bo


~*Service Worker*~

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JerryF wrote:

 

 

Bo when I expected the anger it was normal and didn't throw me off...it was when I didn't expect it or thought it wouldn't, shouldn't, couldn't be used that I dressed my self for war and became another person I didn't like.  "Accepting the "fact of the situation" is what I was taught rather than the morality of it became reality and I stopped participating in arguments.  My blood pressure rarely went up.  (((wink)))


 

Agreed...I didn't project or predict, but I certainly made sure I was in a "good place" vis a vis "head-space" and that being the case, I was healthy and prepared. I went from "expecting the worst" to "being healthy and prepared" and like you said it was normal behavior, so it didn't impact me or knock me off balance. For me, I realized that the alcoholic had a quiver full of arrows, and those arrows were all of the ammunition she used -- guilt, anger, manipulation, intimidation, sadness, begging, pleading, name-calling, martyrism, victim-role, and more. All of these things were thrown at me. She wanted what she wanted, and she wanted me to do what she wanted me to do.

I remember so vividly, various incidents, where something happened, she didn't get what she wanted, she was behaving in all the 'ism's, whatever it was -- and I knew it coming. I knew she would be coming forth with one or more of the arrows in her quiver. Before I found recovery, got healthy, etc. -- I'd end up feeling guilty, ridiculed, bullied, manipulated, feeling sorry, and I would end up doing what she wanted me to do!!! Sometimes, I'd end up pleading with her and almost begging to allow me to do it!!! That was when I was in my disease. Fortunately, I was/am not an alcoholic as I had more than enough just with my disease of being unhealthy. My people pleasing was at the peak! 

I am grateful, ever so grateful today, that the alanon program, for me, is a curriculum for living. Thanks again Jerry.



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Bo

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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...

 

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