Monday, March 18, 2013
The response to my last post was amazing. I honestly didn't expect all the comments, messages and emails I received. It goes to show how great of a community the "military family" can be.
To those of you who have wrote to me about being in a similar situation, keep your head up. I completely understand the roller-coaster you're so desperately trying to get off of.
Just know, if you ever need someone to talk to, feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. If you are looking for a group to be apart of, see if there is a local Al-Anon group near you. Al-Anon is a group focused on those of us who are affected by someone else's excessive drinking. I also suggest Fleet and Family for those of you whose spouse is Navy or Marine Corps. I have always heard negative reviews about Fleet and Family, but my experience with them is and has been great. It's good to talk about it, and know you're not alone.
This was never part of the "Journey" I saw myself writing about. But you can't change what happened, so you use what you've learned to help someone else and teach yourself to move forward.
Now, we're dealing with the emotions of rehab and what's to come. My husband seems to be doing well with everything. He is definitely ready to be home. Although I am ready for him to be home, I worry of a relapse. I know it is possible. I know I will need to trust him, but that trust is very broken when it comes to alcohol. It's important to talk to your significant other about this too. Although, he will likely already know your trust issues with his drinking.
Because my husband and I know it's going to be hard to adjust again, and I'm building that trust back with him, we've decided to do counseling together when his in-stay rehab is completed. We know trust and communication is going to be key for both of us and we want to continue to bring each other closer through all of the ups and downs of this process.
For those of you struggling, always remember you can not force them to quit. You can wish for it, hope for it and want it so bad you can't stand it, but the only way it is possible is if they want to quit. Only then will any sort of rehab truly be successful. Sadly, it sometimes takes something happening for them to want it.
Someone who is addicted honestly doesn't believe they are. To them, they don't have a problem and could stop if they wanted to. Truthfully, sometimes they can't stop if they want to because they want it all they time, they crave it. It's an addiction. If someone was to call them an alcoholic, it would upset them. With my husband, he'd get his feelings hurt if his friends would even joke about him being an alcoholic. If I mentioned to my husband about his drinking being a problem, he would get defensive and angry.
First step for them is admitting they have a problem, follow that with seeking help.
Many people don't see how it affects the family (spouse, kids, etc). It's emotionally draining. For me, it was like emotional abuse, as in I was just so emotionally beat down from the constant drinking and with it feeling neglected, alone unloved and worthless. Sometimes the drinking would cause my husband to say hurtful things, and even today some things said repeat in my head like a broken record... even though he has absolutely no memory of saying any of it.
This is why it is important for you to have someone to talk to about YOU and how his alcohol abuse is affecting you. It's hard to forgive and talking to someone could get you there, to fully forgive him and build yourself back up.
Keep going. Don't give up. Take baby steps and March on with your head up.