I'm still around & SOBER!!!!!

This is for alcoholics and addicts in 12 Step Recovery. Introduce yourself or read introductions from others!
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Joined: Mon Sep 24, 2007 9:34 am

I'm still around & SOBER!!!!!

Postby littlemiss » Fri Oct 17, 2008 6:06 pm

Hi All.

I cannot believe that on Nov. 1st, I'll have 1 YEAR...so I'm 11 1/2 months sober! THIS forum was so instrumental in my getting sober...I cannot thank you enough (espec. to Anne...:)

I know I've lost touch...but am going through the worst HELL of my entire almost 43-years...& God has kept me sober through it ALL. MIRACLE.

I'm separated AGAIN from my H. of 22 years...he is an addict's addict & quit a few of his addictions years ago, but a few reamined hidden until almost 2 years ago...& I'm STILL unraveling the lies/deceit/double-life stuff. My girls have been through hell...I'm as broken as I've ever been...

BUT. I have tools, 2 12 Step programs (1 anon)...& I'm seeing MY part in how I got here...the denial...the more being-revelaed to me ...good but tough...

MOSTLY, i have to accept that *I* cannot fix my H. or make him get sober...(nor change that he had a horrifically abusive childhood)he's got 1 foot in & 1 out of pretend-recovery...& a lifetime of insane thiking to deal with...HE has to want to get well...But it's so hard for me cuz so much of his actions affect the whole family...

I know until/if/when he gets sober, there is no hope for healthy thinking or actions. As all of them, this disease is progressive...

My sponsor often says THIS is what my HP got me sober for...

Thanks for listening...
I'm open to any thoughts from those of you that have dealt w/ spouses or SO's similar to my sitch.
Ann Marie

garden variety
Posts: 750
Joined: Fri Aug 04, 2006 7:39 pm

Postby garden variety » Fri Oct 17, 2008 10:29 pm

Well Hello Ann Marie!!! :) :) :)

Bless your heart, girl, for checking in and letting us know you're growing in sobriety. I can tell by your words that things have changed within you. I'm so very proud of you.

I'm sorry you're life has the struggles that are playing out. How or why probably isn't important right now. Getting through the next 24 hours is important. Try not to forget that you never have to endure a lifetime, or a year, or a month, or even a week of troubled times. Your troubles can only last one day. Tomorrow might be similar, or it might change. God is in the business of intervening in life when I least expect it. Then things change, or I change, and somehow what was once a disaster becomes a thing that happened yesterday.

But then there might be an uncertain today that follows. But that's the best time to be sober. When things are comfortable and going smooth, for some reason it seems sobriety doesn't "shine" as much. There's so many things that shine, maybe sometimes I look over that beautiful garden that took almost 10 years to grow.

But show me a man or woman that has 10 minutes of trouble, and they use the simple kit of spiritual tools - then you're talking about real sobriety that holds up when things get rough. Your words have shown me just that, Ann Marie - that's why I'm proud of you. Your foundation is still standing, and it looks like you've had a tornado or two blow through. I bet you a dollar you would have never foreseen today a year ago. And I also bet you could never have imagined yourself walking through your life today without a drink. That is a miracle.

Things might have gone to hell in a handbasket, your most significant human relationship might have unravelled, but there is at least one thing that is there that wasn't there before, which is also a miracle. That is the Ann Marie that a Power greater than ourselves designed. And here she stands. Ann Marie, you are the miracle that wasn't there a year ago.

And you're a living example of the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous. I'm getting chills! Just like the book says, girlfriend, we don't crawl on our knees before any man. We stand up, dust ourselves off, and pray for the sick and suffering alcoholics that are just like we were.

I know what it's like to get a broken heart in a relationship. But what's worse then that is that I haven't forgot how to give a broken heart like the one you have today.

I know what it's like to be the loved one that is causing you and your daughters so much pain. I wish I could say I can identify with you in your situation, but I won't lie to you. I can identify, like you wouldn't believe, with your husband. I did the same thing to my wife. I did it just like your husband did, and I did it to my sons and my daughter.

I mean you won't believe how similar I was to the man in your life that you are describing. In the last two years of my marriage, I kept my illness hidden from my wife and family. I put together a double life. I lived a secret life finding sordid places and people to indulge in my alcoholism. Places where no one knew about. I opened up my own secret bank accounts and credit cards. I even had places away from home where I could hide my stash of alcohol.

When our marriage ended, my wife was 42 years old. Only a year younger then you. My daughter was 11. Just like you, my wife so desperately wanted to "fix" me. She would have done anything to change my past, and she tried her hardest, just like you. But it wasn't enough to make me change. I packed a couple plastic bagfuls of clothes and walked out the door. My thoughts? "Now I can drink how I want to drink!" I had arrived. Homeless and living in vacant office space for the next three cold months - November December and January - my thinking was that "I have finally arrived." I also played games and tried to "work things out" and "get back together" - the "trial separation" line of BS and all. If anyone here thinks they are sick, well take a look at me - I could have probably qualified to be the king of sick back then and been your teacher!

Just like your husband, I had "one foot in and one foot out of pretend recovery". Except I didn't drink for 5 years. I had this thing licked.

I had arrived all right - at about the same time and the same place that your husband is arriving. Wanna know where I arrived?

I was only at the beginning. It took another 4+ years of losing and losing and losing and losing. 4+ years from where your husband sounds like he is today. It took a little while for alcohol to beat me into a state of reasonableness. But it happened.

It took another 5 years to begin making worthwhile amends to my wife. My kids were hurt so bad, I'll be making amends to them for the rest of my life.

Ann Marie, that's the other side of it. That's the other side of alcoholism that you might not be seeing right now. If your husband is the way you described, and I believe what you're saying, then he's a sick man. This is only my suggestion. It has nothing to do with AA, and it certainly is not important for you to follow it.

Get a good lawyer. Build a life for yourself and your kids. You have the strength, courage, and ability. You have a great support group of men and women who will never let you down. You have a Higher Power. You have a spiritual tool kit that will get you through any kind of weather, fair or foul. It took me 10 - 11 years to finally "come around" and give back everything I stole from the woman I loved like no other. Ask yourself is it worth it, Ann Marie? Is it worth it to wait until you're 53 years-old waiting for someone else's "malady" to finally go into "remission"? I mean it could take more or less than it took me, but you know what I'm saying, don't you?

You've been given a precious gift, and you've showed me that you are quick at learning how to use it in a good way. Seriously, I'm in awe at you, girl! You're worth every minute of a happy, joyous, and free lifetime ahead of you. You don't have to carry the weight of anyone else, and it's just not fair to you or your kids.

Like they sometimes say at meetings around here, "Sometimes it takes a long time for the clown to finish his act." It sure took me a long time. I truly am sorry from the bottom of my heart for what you are going through Ann Marie - it's almost as if I did it to you myself.

Keep your head up young lady. You have what you need to get through this. And if you don't pick up a drink, I guarantee that you'll find a blessing on the "other side of getting through". If I can help you in any way, please just ask. You'd be helping me make living amends.

May God bless you, Ann Marie.

Thanks so much for sharing, and for reminding me about that hole in hell that I some how managed to get pulled out of.

If you haven't noticed, you sure have helped me today.:wink:

With love and respect,

Site Admin
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Postby Dallas » Fri Oct 17, 2008 11:01 pm

Hello Ann Marie,

It's great to hear that you are still sober and doing the deal!!!

Congratulations. I understand about having tough times and walking through them sober. I can't say that I identify in any way with your husband. But, I do understand getting my heart broke while trying to trudge the sober road of happy destiny.

Wow!!! One year on November 1st!!! We're both November babies!!! I'll be 22 on November 14th --- and, my plans are to be in Southern California during the last week of October through the first week in November! (My sponsor is having his 50 years-sober birthday party and I plan to be there!) Maybe... I'll be at a meeting and get to meet you and see you take your one year sober birthday cake!!! That would be awesome.

Best wishes to you,


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Joined: Thu Sep 18, 2008 8:50 am

Postby Jools » Mon Oct 20, 2008 8:44 am

*wipes tears*

Dearest Ann Marie,

Thank you for sharing with us, not only your celebration, but also your sorrows. My heart is aching for you and your children as I type. I wish I was there so I could wrap my arms around you and give you the biggest bear hug of your life, but you'll just have to settle for a cyber hug today.
(((((((((((((Anne Marie)))))))))))))))))))

I, like your husband, suffered a terrible childhood. My sperm donor beat us mercilessly. He's in a nursing home today, alcohol put him there. I was thinking about him this morning because I'm getting ready to do my 4th step and I really do not feel any resentment towards him today. I don't know why, but I feel more resentment towards my mother for allowing him to do that to us. The reason I share this is because, at some point in my life I had to stop blaming my father for who I am today and start taking responsibility for my own actions and behaviors. I cannot change the past....period.

I'd like to thank you also for sharing that, even tho you're clearly suffering so much inside for yourself, your girls, and your husband, you've chosen not to drink over it. You have no idea how much you've helped me today...thank you.

My husband quit drinking 10 days b4 I did. He went thru treatment and I chose to go to the rooms...been thru treatment once in my life and hopefully I'll never have to suffer that again *wink*! My husband does not have a sponsor, does not have one single male phone number, does not have anyone in the rooms he can talk to today. My desire is that he actually "do" the program instead of just being around. I'm quite surprised at myself tho because, control freak that I am, I have not said on single word to him about it. Lord knows, I can't get myself sober so I know I can't keep him sober. The one thing I can do is pray for him and allow God to do His thing.

Hang in there girl and please keep us posted on how you're doing.

CONGRATULATIONS on your almost year!!!!!! I can tell from your post you're doing this deal!

With love,

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Joined: Wed Sep 10, 2008 12:03 pm

Postby sunlight » Mon Oct 20, 2008 3:21 pm

I'm fairly new to this forum & I've read some of your posts before & then didn't "see" you. It's like a homecoming when people are back & I'm glad you are!

When I was 6 mos sober, I filed for divorce from my husband of 30 years. His drug addiction had taken him down so far that he was destroying himself, me & the children. My sponsor said that I should wait, that we see things & people differenty after we're sober. I told her no, that I have been wanting a divorce for 15 yrs but didn't have the courage till I got sober. ( I'm not telling you to not listen to your sponsor! ) The interesting thing was, my lawyer told me if I had waited just a few weeks longer I would have had to pay HIM alimony because he became completely disabled & in a wheelchair!

My 4th step also helped me see why I married someone so into drugs (also Al-anon). I had always blamed him & never saw my part. What an eye-opener for me to find that being with him made ME look good! You know-the poor martyr wife of a pathetic drug addict. I looked so together! Plus, by focusing on him & all his problems I didn't have to look at myself.
It was a perfect place to hide! :roll:

If you just keep working the steps, work with others, keep in conscious contact with God, and DON'T DRINK you will comprehend the word serenity & you will know peace. I know I did!! :D

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Postby Dallas » Mon Oct 20, 2008 4:31 pm

And... "more will be revealed" :wink:

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Postby littlemiss » Tue Oct 21, 2008 10:28 am

Thanks for all of your comments...I appreciate them all!

Paul, I PM's you...:)

garden variety
Posts: 750
Joined: Fri Aug 04, 2006 7:39 pm

Postby garden variety » Wed Oct 22, 2008 4:27 pm

sunlight wrote:What an eye-opener for me to find that being with him made ME look good! You know-the poor martyr wife of a pathetic drug addict. I looked so together! Plus, by focusing on him & all his problems I didn't have to look at myself.
It was a perfect place to hide!



Talk about bringing tears to my eyes!

That is what I call POWER! The incredible power of change.

If there is anyone new to sobriety, read Sunlight's words. That's what happens when an alcoholic does a 4th step and really means it. I mean - seriously - read her words again.

Those aren't words of somebody trying to impress or trying to be someone they are not or somebody, who is angry, or running, or fighting, or struggling. Those words are straight from the heart of person who has underwent a profound change in their reaction to life.

Sign me up! I want what Sunlight has. What she has is something I'd be willing to go to any lengths to get.

Awesome words. Thanks for helping me today!

Posts: 101
Joined: Mon Sep 24, 2007 9:34 am

Postby littlemiss » Thu Oct 23, 2008 10:15 am

Yup...I can relate...

My H. always had/has so many issues that I spent so much time trying to fix him/his...control his irresponsibility/make excuses for him...blah-blah...living in the bloody chaos...I didn't have to look at my own shet...cuz by comparisan, I was Damn Perfect...& knew how to run everyone Elses' Lives (KIDS!)...UM, so I didn't have to look at MY OWN...

Yup-de-dup...tis true...

Control Issues, anyone? Co-dependency, /anyone? Might i need to deal w/ childhood sex. abuse...Ya think? Huh? :roll: Might it not ALL be HIM & his issues?

SO. I attend A-non programs for help with it NOW that I am AWARE...& SOBER...PTL!!!!

Am also going to check out CODA...:)
Hope this helps someone...xoxoxoxoxo

Posts: 101
Joined: Mon Sep 24, 2007 9:34 am

Postby littlemiss » Fri Oct 24, 2008 7:02 pm


Where in S. Calif will u be?

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