Girlfriend cheated on me her first week of sobriety

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Girlfriend cheated on me her first week of sobriety

Postby Nuworldsamurai » Fri Feb 26, 2016 4:56 pm

My girlfriend of 1 1/2 years is about 40-50 days into the program. Things have been going well the past few weeks. I see her struggle but also see progress. She has deep seated issues with her parents, she's a divorced mother with guilt. On antidepressants most of her life. Seems they may actually be working now that she's stopped drinking. I've been giving her space. We've been seeing each other once or twice a week. Yesterday you confessed that she slept with someone in her first week of sobriety. She describes it as being "out of body" and filling a void that the alcohol filled before. Had nothing to do with me. Says she lost her sh$t that first week.

Is this common? I'm devistated. I'm hurt. I'm angry. But I also believe her. I've seen her at her worst. She's kind of f'ed up and I kind of get it in her situation. I guess what I'm asking is, is this "temporary insanity" a valid defense for someone newly sober?
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Re: Girlfriend cheated on me her first week of sobriety

Postby tyg » Sat Feb 27, 2016 3:47 am

My personal opinion through experience working with others too is that, No, it is not common. These things that have happened in their past are NOT valid reasons for their behavior.

You may find the Al-anon program helpful. It is a wonderful sister program of AA to help those who live or deal with a problem drinker...sober or not.
Just because one is sober, doesn't always mean they have sobriety.
~The secret to the AA program is the first three words on page 112~
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Re: Girlfriend cheated on me her first week of sobriety

Postby Nuworldsamurai » Sat Feb 27, 2016 4:39 am

Your last sentence," just because someone is sober doesn't mean they have sobriety". I guess I'm not asking if what she did is justifiable. I not excusing this. If she were drunk and out of her mind I wouldn't excuse it. If I take her back it's going to be a long road of my personally recovery from this. I truly believe she's remorseful, shes beating her self up. I don't believe it's happened before.
Back to the quote, could she have been in such a mental state that week that she could have f'ed up this bad? Guilty regardless.
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Re: Girlfriend cheated on me her first week of sobriety

Postby tyg » Sat Feb 27, 2016 5:29 am

Determining the "why" for it is not possible. But, I'm inclined to say, "No," because most people know what they are doing and know right from wrong. People can be spiritually sick whether associated with AA or not, some people cheat on their significant others...that's just life. She did it because she wanted to.

The best way I can explain the difference between Sober vs. Sobriety
Many "sober" alcoholics who don't have "sobriety" can experience a transfer of addictions that could involve new unhealthy behaviors to food, sex, shopping, romantic relationships, sloth, anger etc. because they are not applying the AA program and acquiring healthy ways to fill the void that alcohol had satisfied.
~The secret to the AA program is the first three words on page 112~
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Re: Girlfriend cheated on me her first week of sobriety

Postby Nuworldsamurai » Sat Feb 27, 2016 6:30 am

I won't accuse her of not applying the program in her first week of sobriety. Don't imagine anyone truly applies the program their first week in. I do see her applying the program now. Besides her kids it's number one, and I'm ok with that. The past few weeks I've seen change and her kids, and I, are a big motivation.

The transfer of addiction, makes perfect sense to me now. Doesn't make it ok, still hurt. Gives me a little more understanding of how it could happen. The scenario popped into my head when she told me she was starting aa. Didn't know it as transfer of addiction and knew she would never go that route. Her food intake, borderline binges have happened too. I guess now I just have to figure out if I can get past it or not. She's asked me to go to counseling and open meetings with her. Al-anon.

Thanks for your input. I greatly appreciate it.
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Re: Girlfriend cheated on me her first week of sobriety

Postby leejosepho » Sat Feb 27, 2016 7:22 am

Nuworldsamurai wrote:The transfer of addiction, makes perfect sense to me now.

I typically consider the term "transfer of addiction" as being an element of psycho-babble, yet the underlying reality is that a sufficient substitute for the effect of alcohol must be found in order for abstinence to be possible...

"'...I know I must get along without liquor, but how can I? Have you a sufficient substitute?'
"Yes, there is a substitute and it is vastly more than that. It is a fellowship in Alcoholics Anonymous..." ("A.A.", page 152)

So, the question here is about whether or not the sufferer begins to willingly participate in being "addicted to spirituality", so to speak. "Switching addictions", as such, is going to happen simply because we each need something external in order to deal with our internals, and the different here breaks down to whether one remains self-reliant (human-powered) or becomes God-reliant (spiritually-minded) in the area of attitudes and actions (our wills and our lives).
=======================
"We A.A.s do not *stay* away from drinking [one day at a
time] -- we *grow* away from drinking [one day at a time]."
("Lois Remembers", page 168, quoting Bill, emphasis added)
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Re: Girlfriend cheated on me her first week of sobriety

Postby Layne » Sat Feb 27, 2016 1:44 pm

I don't really remember my first week, but I remember big time squirreliness (not a word but it fits). I would have done anything to change the way I was feeling. The pain I was in.

Were all the decisions and actions I took during that week sane? Highly doubtful! Actual bottom line is NO they were not, but I can't change them. They are part of my story.

Did they effect other people? Undoubtedly!

That period in my life doesn't make me proud, but my present life wouldn't be what it is today without that chapter and so for that I am grateful because today is good!
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Re: Girlfriend cheated on me her first week of sobriety

Postby ezdzit247 » Sat Feb 27, 2016 4:35 pm

Hi Nuworldsamurai and welcome.

From what you've described about your relationship with this woman, she was drinking and using when you met her, continued to drink and use throughout the 1 and 1/2 years you've been seeing each other (except for the last 40-50 days) the two of you are not married, don't live together, are not engaged and only see each other once or twice a week. Is this an accurate description? Because of today's threat of STDs, even if you two had no more than an ongoing casual sexual relationship, it would have been rude and irresponsible of her not to tell you that she had had sexual relations with someone else. Kudos to her for being honest with you and for not being rude or irresponsible. She's gone further than that and given you an explanation for her behavior, i.e. an emotional freak out in her first week of sobriety. It happens. Sounds like she has a handle on why it happened and that the incident had nothing to do with sex and wasn't about you. From your description of your relationship with this woman, it doesn't sound like she was "cheating" on you or that she owes you a "valid excuse" for her behavior. She has expressed her desire for the two of you to go to counseling together, open AA meetings, and Alanon meetings. Sounds like she wants to work on having a more in depth relationship with you and that you have a decision to make about whether or not you want the same with her.
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Re: Girlfriend cheated on me her first week of sobriety

Postby Nuworldsamurai » Sat Feb 27, 2016 5:02 pm

Oh, no. Very serious relationship. Someone I see/saw marrying. Up till the point of her starting the program we saw each other 3 or 4 times a week. Spoke every day. The past 2 days are the first that have gone by that I haven't told her I love her. She continues to say it. Divorce agreement is no sleep overs while kids are there till an engagement. Still would have dinner with the kids and spend time with them. And hindsight is 20/20 but I never saw her drink much. But I realize now it's not about quantity. She has a super low tolerance. 1 glass of wine for her is probably 3 for me. We never really drank much together. I can honestly say I've never been drunk around her. But looking back it all makes sense.

We decided on once a week after she started so she could focus on sobriety and codependency issues. She says she told me because she saw a future and couldnt possibly go on with out being honest about it. I do respect that and I believe it. I believe it was nothing personal and about filling a void. I don't have an addictive personality. So on paper this all makes sense but part of me is still having problems rapping my head around it.
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Re: Girlfriend cheated on me her first week of sobriety

Postby Nuworldsamurai » Sat Feb 27, 2016 5:04 pm

And a condom was used.
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Re: Girlfriend cheated on me her first week of sobriety

Postby whipping post » Sun Feb 28, 2016 6:36 am

You are in a tough spot. Have you considered Al Anon?

My experience was that I was an emotional wreck for about the first 6 months. However, as Tyg said, I knew right from wrong. I might be powerless and without the first defense against alcohol but not cheating, drug use, stealing, gambling, etc... What she did was wrong and typical early sobriety is not an excuse. It might be a symptom of some other issue or disturbance, but not the early sobriety rollercoaster.
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Re: Girlfriend cheated on me her first week of sobriety

Postby D'oh » Sun Feb 28, 2016 12:07 pm

Sorry to hear of your dilemma (if it truly is in the big picture). I am nowhere near being a Relationship Consoler. But I have gone through the Sobering Up period (twice). Thank God!

My first dry out time, I was in a relationship. She was there on my last Drunk, and helped in my "Sudden Glimpse of Sanity" that made me realize that I and my drinking, was the person causing all the troubles in my life.

We were young, still had our whole lives ahead of us. Together or with someone else. I threw myself into work rather than relationships or anything else. 3 jobs at first, just to keep my self from going more insane in my own mind. Substituting work for Booze. Gradually the promise of "Being alone at perfect peace and ease with ourselves" came to be in my life. The need to keep my mind occupied on other things grew less important. I no longer needed to artificially feel good, only to suffer the remorse that sets in after.

Our relationship survived, and we were married about a year later. Even though she knew that the Program came first in my life, for without it I would have no life.

20 years ahead, we were raising 2 great? (j/k) kids, paid off a house, and I had got away from meetings. Again living life on life's terms got to be too much for me without help. I started sneaking drinks, and soon didn't care anymore, I had to drink regardless of who knew or that I knew a Better way to live. I drank my way out of a job, maxed out our credit and drank my health and family away. My wife stuck through it with me. Proving that we Alcoholics seem to have a way of finding the best spouses out there.

Which is not an excuse, but might be what you Girlfriend was going through. Substituting romance for Alcohol's escape. You did mention "codependency issues"

So I could get into my relationship views, but that would just mess Everyone Up! So just the facts.

What happened, has already happened. There is No going back. (the past) Counselling? (the future)? Happening (today) < a choice
Dishonest, The fact that she did. Honest, the fact that she told you of it. <a choice
And of course. How does this affect today?
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Re: Girlfriend cheated on me her first week of sobriety

Postby ezdzit247 » Sun Feb 28, 2016 3:17 pm

Nuworldsamurai wrote:....So on paper this all makes sense but part of me is still having problems rapping my head around it.


She has apologized to you for her behavior and expressed her desire for the two of you to move forward, go to counseling together, open AA meetings, and Alanon meetings. The ball is in your court....
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Re: Girlfriend cheated on me her first week of sobriety

Postby Spirit Flower » Sun Feb 28, 2016 5:32 pm

Just don't make any babies for awhile.... til things settle down.
...a score card reading zero...
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Re: Girlfriend cheated on me her first week of sobriety

Postby Lali » Mon Feb 29, 2016 6:38 pm

None of us here have enough information on this woman and her history to answer your question. She could have suffered something very traumatic in her childhood that caused her to act out. We just don't know and it's not fair to her for us to give you advice other than to seek couple's counseling and I also suggest that you attend AlAnon. Who knows, this woman may blossom into the awesome human being she was meant to be before life and alcohol happened - once she has worked this program and integrated it into her life.

I know that when we first get sober our emotions are all over the place. We can quit drinking but we don't change overnight. Give it time if you truly love her.
Step 1: I can't
Step 2: He can
Step 3: I think I'll let him
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