Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Life Wallowing in Acoholic Hell. My exchange with a reader who is married to an alcoholic

I had an excellent comment from a reader to my latest Divorced Moms article, His Ex Couldn't Fix Him, And You Likely Can't Either.  I would like to share with you because it is one more testament from someone besides me that life with an alcoholic is universally AWFUL and it doesn't get better. If one thing is true, it is this: alcoholics are so incredibly predictable that it us uncanny. They are highly manipulative, accusatory, and blame everything and everyone for their behavior but themselves. They are also liars. This pattern is part of their disease and you have zero power to fix it or cajole him or her into seeking help. Here is another fact: It is not ever going to get better. Ok, for a few people it might. But that "better" takes YEARS of hardcore therapy and it comes at a HUGE emotional, financial and physical toll to everyone around them, including (especially) YOU. Sound awesome? Of course not! It is HORRID. So, again, if you are living with an alcoholic (or drug addict) SAVE YOURSELF. How can you do that? One word: LEAVE. When? NOW. And here you go for the comment...

Fed up
September 01, 2015
I so know the feeling.  My poor excuse of a husband/father is an alcoholic. Finally after 14 years I'm ready to finally file for divorce.  He lost his job in May and instead of trying his hardest to find a job to support his family he lies and drinks.  I am glad to say he has run out of funds and being I will not support a man or so called man he is pretty much screwed.  I tried for years to help him but in reality enabled him by hearing his excuses about his former wife and his zero interest in his daughter yet blamed me for that rift. I finally am putting my girl pants on and moving on.  I've wasted enough energy and time on this loser. I'm sure he will say I was hard to please but if acting like a responsible provider over an alcoholic is being a difficult wife I am ok with that.  Setting myself free and showing my son what life without stress is well worth it.
Lizzy Smith
September 01, 2015
Dear Fed up,
Thank you for your comment. I truly hope you save yourself because you cannot save him. Here is one thing I learned from my ex-husband's therapist: He must bottom out before he begins to seek real help. Just quitting isn't enough. He is still the same guy whether he is drinking AT THAT MOMENT, drunk or sober because without REAL hardcore professional help over a period of YEARS, he is still the same guy. Alcohol drives everything he does-- he either is drinking, hung-over, or wants to drink. And if he is in therapy and no longer drinking, it will take YEARS for him to develop adult coping skills because he had ONE coping skill (alcohol) and it no longer exists so now, without the alcohol, he has NO coping skills. He will become less likable without the alcohol (how could that be possible?). And at that moment, I lost all hope in repairing the relationship. Life with an alcoholic was/is HOPELESS and I was looking at THE REST OF MY LIFE in Hell if I stayed. I knew then that it was done, over, and we were on borrowed time. I began plotting my escape. 
Do not believe the blame he places at your feet. My ex, too, blamed me for the terrible relationship he had with his first wife and daughters. Heck, he blamed me (or his job) for EVERYTHING. It was my fault he drank too much, too! Let it fall on deaf ears. It's not true and it's part of their manipulation and lies. They are, if nothing else, so incredibly predictable.
Stay in touch and know that a far clearer, brighter and more beautiful life is out there for you. The healing stage can be painful but it also ROCKS. 
Lizzy