husband

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Re: husband

Postby Ellen B. » Fri Jan 04, 2002 9:26 am

Hi bb:<P>I know exactly where you are coming from. My husband has asked to attend meetings with me, and I have always told him "no." Lucky for me, he just accepts that and doesn't sulk. But then he wants me to report to him on what I said when I get home! LOL. <P>Anyway, can you attend a closed meeting? That way, he actually can't go, since the meeting is only for alcoholics or those concerned with their own drinking. I would also just honestly tell him that for your own recovery to be the most effective, you need to attend alone. Also, tell him that the very best way he can help you is to attend AlAnon, and also to let you find your path to sobriety your own way, i.e. going to meetings alone. And if he sulks, don't let it bother you -- this is for YOU, not for him. Go to the meeting alone, leave him home sulking, and get the most out of the meeting that you can.<P>Sorry this probably isn't much advice, but it's worth a shot.<P>Good luck!
Ellen B.
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Re: husband

Postby Dave S » Fri Jan 04, 2002 9:53 am

Hi BB,<P>You're in a tough spot, but if it helps any, it's not an uncommon one. As always, what I have to say below are my own opinions, my own experiences.<P>It would be so easy if AA only had to deal with single people who have no connections with anyone else -- you could just work on sobriety with no pressure to deal with others.<P>The truth is though, that we all enter AA with the baggage of wrecked, screwed up and/or lop sided relationships. I have all the sympathy in the world for your husband -- how long has he seen you fight and suffer over the booze problem? How long has he tried to fix things and take care of stuff, maybe cover for you and make attempts to protect you? I may know from experience that the best thing he can do for himself is to let go of you and get his own life on a new path -- but he's got his own past habits and co-dependencies dragging him down.<P>My own advice? Sure, your husband needs Al-anon. If he'll try it, he'll find that Al-anon is not about trying to get you sober; it's about letting go of you and taking care of himself. It's about learning to break the old patterns that keep you guys stuck and going around and around and doing the same old things to each other. AA starts with you admitting you're powerless over alcohol; Al-anon starts with him admitting he's powerless over the alcoholic. As we say: simple, but not always easy.<P>I personally take the kind of tough stand that the partners of alkies don't need to waste any more of their time trying to understand us. They don't have to waste any more time trying to fix us. There is nothing more they can do for us except to let go and give us into the hands of some higher power. On the other hand, I've come to believe that our obligations to the non alcoholic are much greater. It's our disease that's made us self centered, dishonest and none too trustworthy. It's our disease that's stunted us and made us into greedy takers of everything we can get from others -- regardless of the cost to them.<P>If you really want and are ready for the new life without the booze, just get yourself going with the AA program. Go to meetings, learn about the 12 steps, get a sponsor (and with everything else going on, please make it a woman sponsor -- your husband doesn't need to add to his insecurities).<P>If your husband insists on going to meetings you'll just have to put up with it and find the courage to talk honestly about your program. If he wants to know everything you're doing -- then you'll just have to tell him. He will find out soon enough that the AA thing is for you and your sobriety. He will see that the meetings aren't about him and that you're learning that he's not your problem. Hopefully, it won't take long before he realizes that he needs to get on with his life too.<P>Whatever else you do, don't let your husband become just another excuse in the big bag of excuses that can keep you from sobriety. <P>Final thoughts: Obviously you're "online", would your husband be willing to start Al-anon over the internet? He can find it at: http//www.al-anon.alateen.org/. Another group that has helped many is Emotions Anonymous at: http//emotionsanonymous.org. And, I would he happy to talk to your husband if he's interested. My email is dave@sharpone.dyndns.org. Remember, all you can do is suggest — the "action" is up to him.<P>You really have the wonderful opportunity to grow together, each with your own 12 step programs. The irony is that you get to grow together by letting go of each other.<P>My best to you both. I hope you keep coming back.
Dave S
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