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Post Info TOPIC: Denial and projection - normal?


Status: Offline
Posts: 1
Denial and projection - normal?

Well for starters I guess Iāve been in denial about my husbands alcoholism for years. Things have escalated these past couple months to where I canāt deny it any longer. Iāve been to two Alanon meetings and definitely plan to keep going. One of the problems Iām having is it seems my husband is in complete denial of the alcohol fueled negative behaviors heās been having towards me. Heās been projecting all the things heās been doing to be saying Iām doing to him. We have a 2 year old and Iām pregnant. I told him I need a break from the chaos but he wonāt leave. I left for now, but donāt feel itās right that I have to leave the house when Iām the one working and paying for it. Iāve heard denial is common with alcoholism. I understand I canāt change him but is there anything I can do to help him see what is actually happening? Itās hard to convince him he needs to find somewhere else to stay when in his mind Iām the one causing all the issues. I want to get one of the Alanon books. Is there one in particular that would help my situation that I should start with? This is all so very hard to handle.


~*Service Worker*~

Status: Online
Posts: 16486

Welcome Struggling MamaBear So glad that you have found and are attending alanon meetings-- They do help tremendously and provide great tools to live by. The Steps, the slogans, and Meetings all help to guide us to a life lived with courage, wisdom and serenity.

The best Alanon book I would recommend is: the"Dilemma of the Alcoholic Marriage " as well as Paths to Recovery
Please do keep coming back. There is hope.




~*Service Worker*~

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Posts: 698

Hi, Struggling -- you are not alone! Welcome to the group. The chaos must be exhausting, especially with little ones to care for. I am glad you are going to meetings. If you have phone numbers from the meeting, don't hesitate to call someone.

I also experienced the denial and projection. Can you say anything to make him see and care about how it is affecting you? In my experience, not until he is ready ... which had nothing to do with when I was ready. What I learned in Al-Anon was to turn the focus onto myself ... which didn't seem logical at first, but I found it was the only thing that created any change.

Perhaps legal advice is needed regarding who stays in the house ... I don't have that experience, but others here might share what they did.

Books - "How Al-Anon Works" is very thorough, and the paperback is not expensive. For short readings -- "Courage to Change" is a favorite daily reader. Also your meeting may have free pamphlets. Try to get "The Merry-Go-Round Named Denial" and "Understanding Ourselves and Alcoholism."

Another (non-CAL) book I liked was "Marriage On The Rocks: Learning to Live with Yourself and an Alcoholic" by Janet G. Woititz. This is an older book. It was really validating for me.  And I agree with Betty -  the "Dilemma of the Alcoholic Marriage" from Al-Anon.

Detachment was key for me... and it takes a while to learn. But for now just remember that there is a whole Al-Anon family that understands what you are feeling.

-- Edited by Freetime on Tuesday 5th of December 2017 10:53:48 PM

-- Edited by Freetime on Tuesday 5th of December 2017 10:55:28 PM


~*Service Worker*~

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Posts: 9052

I also welcome you StrugglingMamaBear to MIP - so glad you found us and so glad that you joined. I also am happy to hear you've found meetings and plan to attend. Denial is a huge part of this disease. You are not alone. The books suggested align with what I would have said, so don't have anything to offer there.

I hope you keep coming back - when I was new to all this and things were chaotic/drama-filled at home, I really tried to take things moment by moment, one day at a time. There is hope and help in recovery!!


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: 339

Hi StrugglingMamaBear, welcome to the Boards. As far as books, I found How Al-Anon works great as well as the daily readers, and How to Live with an Alcoholic. There was also a great webcast with recordings on their website that I listened to a lot when I first came to the program. Try listening to some of the podcasts on It is like having a mini meeting at the ready if you can't make a face-to-face meeting. I am sorry that you are going through this while pregnant. When my husband hit rock bottom I had a three and five year old. It is amazing how strong denial can be and it took a few months in the program, and me detaching and letting him deal with the consequences of his disease, before he couldn't be in denial anymore. Hang in there....hopefully he will hit rock bottom soon. Stay strong and take good care of you and your kids. Sending positive thoughts and prayers.

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