Good morning Manette, and Paul.
Thanks to both of you for sharing.
tj wrote:My husband insists that I am not an alcoholic. It just baffles me. I know that what others think is none of my business, but living with someone who does not think that I am an alcoholic works on my head at times.
I say that too... and mean it: "what others think is none of my business" ... or "what they think is not important... " ... but, I don't live with them.
I don't take them home with me and I don't go home to find them there. If I did... and it bothered me... I would be looking to make some changes. I've had to remind myself that my sobriety is more important than friends or relationships. Because without my sobriety all my friends and relationships will be changing... not matter what. And, sobriety is not just what I want -- it's also what God wants for me. So, even if I were to change my mind about my sobriety... it isn't going to change God's mind about it! He wants me to stay sober!
BTW: I'm not making a suggestion to leave your husband!
I'm not a relationship expert and I don't give specific relationship suggestions. I only share what I've done or experienced on my side of town.
My first thought as I was reading was "maybe your husband feels like he's lost his drinking partner" ... and, then I read... that he doesn't drink.
Maybe he feels insecure or jealous.
I try to remember that what other people are thinking about me is, under normal circumstances... for their gain -- and for what's best for them -- and has nothing to do with what's best for me -- even when they tell me that they are thinking of "it" in terms of "my benefit." They might not realize how badly one of their ideas could bring harm to me.
It used to really burn me to read and hear that "alcoholics are selfish, self-seeking, dishonest and afraid."
It really bothered me to read pages 60 through 63, and try to identify those traits to myself... "all the time."
Then, one day... another thought crossed my mind, that implied that "it has nothing to do with all the time" (the selfish, self-centered and self-seeking needs to be in control of everything and everybody)... and "it has nothing to do with intentions or motives" ... because sometimes motives and intentions can be good and quite virtuous... it has to do with regardless of what "it" - "is" - we step on the toes of our fellows and they retaliate.
Why does the other person feel the need to retaliate? Because we stepped on their toes and they didn't get what they wanted.
And, what if they got what they wanted? They still wouldn't be happy. And, this is not just an "alcoholic personality" thing... this applies to "non-alcoholics" as well.
It boils down to the same requirement that we must meet -- when it comes to taking our Step Three:
"The first requirement is that we be convinced that
life run on self-will
can hardly be a success. On
that basis we are almost always in collision with something
or somebody, even though our motives are good.
Most people try to live by self-propulsion. Each person
is like an actor who wants to run the whole show; ..."
Did you notice the qualifier?
It didn't say "alcoholics try to..." ... it says "Most people"... This applies to them, too. (We can use this information to help us better understand ourselves AND to better understand other people).
Unfortunately, "most people" are trying to control something or someone... "other than themselves." And, that's what I think causes 99% of the worlds problems... other than my own.
I have to take credit for my problems... because I have to take my own inventory.
Even when they are at fault
I have to be "okay" with "them being wrong."
In other words... yes, it may be true and totally honest... that the other person is at fault. "They are creating a problem for me!" But, I can't look at that... and it used to make me mad and ticked-off that I couldn't look at that!
... I could only look at me!
Well, how can that be fair and me not be a victim?
It's because "I have my solution to my problems"... and they are not my solution.
I may end up parting ways with them in working out my solution. Or, I may end up being more tolerant and patient with them. The only think I know... is "How it works"... and how it works is "The 12 Steps"... and if I apply the 12 Steps to ANY problem I have... I am sure that I will end up with God's will and the best solution to my problem.
I hope that helps you as much as it helps me.