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Post Info TOPIC: Changing the goalposts


Veteran Member

Status: Offline
Posts: 71
Date:
Changing the goalposts


Hi, my ah has suddenly stopped drinking. It's been a week. At first I felt utter relief that I don't have to deal with it for a while (he has clarified that this is just a break for a bit, not permanent. He needs to give his body a break). 

 

Now I have my husband back I'm in a strange place. I go from happy to angry about past ''wrongs", to hurt, to loving him in random cycles. I'm trying to keep it inside me and thus keep my side of the street clean. One minute I want divorce, the next I don't.

 

Part of me suspects that he is trying to manipulate me into staying in this marriage. When he was drinking last week I overheard him telling his mum that I was playing mind games (I'm really not. I'm just trying to detach and use the Al anon tools  I have been learning to cope). 

 

I suppose I don't trust him anymore about anything. It is possible that he is doing this for him and not just for our marriage. 

He hasn't got any outside help, so I think he might be a dry drunk.

 

There. I've written it down. Now I will pray for clarity. Thanks for letting me vent here.

 

 



__________________


~*Service Worker*~

Status: Offline
Posts: 9114
Date:

Vent away A Nother! What I had to learn to appreciate was the 'breaks from insanity' that came with breaks in the active disease. As we live one day at a time only, I had to be grateful that just for today, there was no booze/drugs flowing and more quiet/peace. I am all about progress and I learned in recovery how to focus on what's working for today instead of what's broken.

Keep working it - it does work when we do!

__________________

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*~

Status: Offline
Posts: 1368
Date:

 

 Nother...

               the A.most always tries to pin the blame on us- for their sad sorry life. Mine did bigtime. aww...

Alanon is a really good place for adulting- just keeping the conversation up- and keeping our corner of the room tidy.

One day at a time... aww...



__________________

One day at a time.

bud


~*Service Worker*~

Status: Offline
Posts: 1879
Date:

((A Nother)) You're not alone. I can also relate. The more I'm able to focus on myself, the better that things become, but most around me don't agree as this makes them feel even more out of control, etc.

__________________
Bo


~*Service Worker*~

Status: Offline
Posts: 968
Date:

A nother -- the road can be rocky, bumpy, and rough...and that is OUR road. I have a different perspective on this, based upon my own experiences. First, the relief that one can feel from the alcoholic/addict quitting drinking/using often comes from and goes to a certain mindset. First, it can come from the desperation, the place where we may feel, think, etc., "if he/she would only stop drinking" -- and unfortunately, that is rarely the solution to all of the issues at hand. Second, it can go to a place of complacency, for me, perhaps naivete, us just wanting so much for them to quit. What that can also lead to is the misinterpreted relapse -- meaning, he/she starts drinking again...and we call it a relapse. I don't agree with that. A dry drunk just drinks, not drinks, as a point of reference. They didn't find recovery. They just didn't drink.

That being the case, quitting is not the universal solution. A dry drunk is simply an alcoholic who is not drinking, at the time, at the moment, for a period of time, etc. The 'ism's are still there!!! It is about recovery. When my wife "just didn't drink" and was dry...I DID NOT have my wife back. I just had an alcoholic wife who chose not to drink for X number of days in a row.

It became easier for me to get a handle -- ACCEPTANCE -- and LET GO of the anger about the wrongs, the past, and everything else. One has to be careful. YOU cannot be contingent upon HIM. Alcoholics absolutely, positively use manipulation. Either intentional or not. Doesn't matter in my mind. If it's there, it's there, and I am the other side of the coin...so I have to do what is best, right, healthy for me.

For me, it was always obvious "why" the alcoholic was doing this. Always. Plus, if they just quit -- that wasn't the answer. If they found recovery -- it was always obvious "why" and I had tremendous clarity and awareness around that. If he hasn't gotten any help...then that says something. Keep doing what you are doing. Keep doing the work, on you, for you. You'll be fine...keep it up.

__________________

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

Status: Offline
Posts: 237
Date:

 

 

When this happened within the relationship with my alcoholic/addict wife and I, I held on to all of the lessons I I had learned up till it did.  "The disease is cunning, powerful and baffling helped me to understand that neither she or I had a control yet and living minute to minute and day to day was the best alert system that was available and we needed the program and the fellowship and meetings and tools and God...especially God.  I was alerted to "dry drunks" both with her and with me.  I was a sick as she was and at times more so.  Ours is a we disease and I needed to do my part in recovery as dedicated and often as I could.  Without counting the days she didn't drink and use she went back out as the disease would have anyone addicted do and I had to go back out myself in order to maintain my recovery...my own apartment and such keeping the program close and then she stopped again and so did I and the merry-go-round music arrived again and I came to understand relapse needing all of the players available.  I relapsed 3 or 4 more times with only one of them being co-joining with living conditions and then I experienced the feeling of freedom that comes from letting go entirely as they spoke of in the face to face meetings.  Thank God.  I loved her for exactly who she is and continue to do so and hope and pray every alcoholic/addict finds daily recovery without relapse...even your alcoholic.  Stay free from the disease A nother.  This is...we are recovery as much as the disease is cunning powerful and baffling.   ((((hugs)))) smile



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Jerry F


Veteran Member

Status: Offline
Posts: 71
Date:

Thanks for the responses. I love you all for taking the time to bring me clarity, over and over again!

__________________


~*Service Worker*~

Status: Offline
Posts: 2832
Date:

One of my favorite sayings, and a part of my signature, is "he will either drink or he won't, what are YOU gonna do?", and your post is the poster child for that great saying! :)

Bouts of sobriety/non-drinking can be every bit as confusing & emotionally upsetting as bouts of heavy drinking......  Never sure if it is by design, manipulation, or simply early attempts of the A to start addressing their own alcoholism, but in the end - it really doesn't matter "why"....

If your A is actively drinking, the best solution is choosing recovery for yourself....

If your A is taking a break from active drinking, the best solution is still choosing recovery for yourself....

If your A starts committing to a program of recovery for himself, the best solution is still choosing recovery for yourself....

If your A swears that he doesn't have a problem and it is all in your head, the best solution is still choosing recovery for yourself.....

 

For my two cents, it is often a bit less chaotic when they are not drinking, but certainly not always.  For me, when my AW would stop, even for a day, her "isms" would kick in and she would want to immediately dive into couples counseling and demand that the two of us need to start working on our marriage, etc...  In that regard, it was almost MORE stressful to me when she was not drinking - as she stayed more on her side of the street when she was drinking.

 

You're doing well and reaching out, talking things out, and trying hard to break the cycle.  Kudos to you, and keep working your recovery - it looks great on you!

 

Tom



__________________

"He is either gonna drink, or he won't.... what are YOU gonna do?"

"What you think of me is none of my business"

"If you knew the answer to what you are worrying about, would it REALLY change anything?"

 

 

 

 

Bo


~*Service Worker*~

Status: Offline
Posts: 968
Date:

Tom, I have always loved your signature tag line..."he will either drink or he won't, what are YOU gonna do?" Your post is excellent!!! Thank you very much for posting that.

In my experience, the simple "not drinking" -- the dry drunk thing -- is even more confusing than the drinking. I got to the point, when I found recovery, and was living a life of recovery, my wife's drinking was no longer consuming or damaging me. It was not my focus. I wasn't "involved" in the drama, chaos, turmoil, and havoc. It was hers...not mine. And you are right Tom, in the end, it really doesn't matter why. The more I tried to figure it out -- anything that the alcoholic was doing, saying, thinking, etc. -- the more I drove myself crazy. It was like trying to figure out the riddle "who's on first" -- there is no answer!!! When my wife was a dry drunk -- the 'ism's were still there! Yes, there was manipulation, blame, guilt, love, hate, martyr'ism, and so much more. It didn't matter if it was my wife doing this intentionally or not. It really didn't matter why, or how, or what for that matter.

I love what you said about the three scenarios:

If your A is actively drinking, the best solution is choosing recovery for yourself...AGREED.

If your A is taking a break from active drinking, the best solution is still choosing recovery for yourself...AGREED.

If your A hits rock bottom, makes a decision to find recovery, starts living a life of recovery, goes to AA, the best solution is still choosing recovery for yourself...AGREED.

And, if your A swears that he doesn't have a problem and it is all in your head, whatever it is, denial, blame, guilt, negotiations, and all of the other things we have seen and faced, the best solution is still choosing recovery for yourself...AGREED.

I'll add one to that, which I've experienced many times...

If your A says they want to get better, really wants to, they will get better, but says they will do it "their way" or "the way they want" or will control their drinking, or wants to do whatever it is they want to do, or wants you to be OK with what they do, or anything other than recovery (detox, rehab, IOP, going to AA meetings, regularly, having a sponsor, working the AA program, and so forth)...then the best solution is still choosing recovery for yourself!

For me, in my experience, it's that last one where people get "lost" -- and don't get better. Embrace alanon, focus on your, work the alanon program, make change, live a life of recovery...it is up to you whether you stay, leave, separate, divorce, stay married, live with, move out, etc...that is up to each person. But if you are in alanon and doing the work, working the program, going to meetings, focusing on you, making change, and everything else...then you'll be fine. If not, you won't be. LOL. In my experience, it's the last one where our sickness doesn't get cured. We fall victim to accepting unacceptable behavior, we tolerate the intolerable, we try and create a life where the unbearable is bearable, we go into our denial, our standards, our norm, gets lower and sets itself where our life is...and we convince ourselves we "are happy" or "are OK" so to speak. I did this for several years. Until I started really doing the work -- on me -- and working with my sponsor, embracing the first three steps, and more...until then, I was constantly trying to make my "unhappy" OK...and I convinced myself I did and that I was OK.

My wife too would stop drinking -- no recovery -- and then the focal point became marriage counselling, working on us, spending time together, going away, vacations, doing activities, and so on -- and she was neglecting the real problem -- her drinking! So, our lives became more stressful. I remember how that phase really was her and me being in denial!!! Her 'ism's were not only there, but escalated!!! They became worse. I was so distraught, so sad, so scared...when I learned that "if she just stopped drinking, all would be fine" was simply not true. She stopped. All was not fine. In reality, nothing was fine. I so badly wanted things to be OK...I manipulated my mind, thoughts, etc., and convinced myself I was OK.

That said, A nother, thank you again for sharing. That's the first step in getting better -- sharing and awareness. Keep trying to make change. Keep doing the work...you are getting better.



-- Edited by Bo on Monday 10th of September 2018 05:16:27 PM

__________________

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...

 

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