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Question
Posted by: JMDJ | 2010/07/27

Scared and Alone

Hi all

I''ve just filed for divorce this morning and I don''t know where to from here. I''ve been married for six years to someone I love with all my heart. He''s a good hearted person but for years I''ve put up with his abuse of alchol and his stealing from me and my family when he has no money for booze. He lies constantly and I am not happy in my marriage, I tried for years to help him but it seems he would rather be the way he is and not better himself.

He stayed with his family last night but they have no room for him. He has no job and I am afraid for him. Where will he go? I don''t want him to land up on the street but he can''t come back home as he got agressive with my mother last night when she confronted him on his behaviour. She will not allow him to come back but I cannot watch him suffer like that.

I can''t concentrate at work today and I am in tears. People are always in and out of my office and I don''t want to share my personal life with them. I would just like some advice on how to deal with this traumatic experience and how I should handle the current situation.

I have no money to see a phsychologist and I''m worried as I am a deppressed person. I have not been able to get medication due to the fact that all my money has to go to supporting the household, especially with my husband out of a job...

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink

In some ways, some alcoholics and other substance abusers, and indeed some other disordered folks, almost rely on YOUR difficulty in seeing them suffer, to assume that you will rescue them time and again. I wrote a classic article some years back on "Exactly how many very last chances do you expect ?" Its laudable to want to help, but you can't do it for them.
And sometikes Tough Love is the only potentially helpful reaction - to force them to confront the situation they have created. Unless and until they sincerely become determined to change, they won't do so.
You can't encourage him to take the essential step of taking personal responsibility for his choices, if youi keep on taking the responsibility for him.
Don't be so sensitive to his "suffering" - he's causing suffering for you and your mom, and has probably anaesthetized himself. SADAG ( number on this page ) may be helpful for YOU, in providing a support group to help you through this phase.
AA and AlAnon offer support for the spouses of alcoholics, too, and this may be a useful resource for you.

The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical exmanication, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.

4
Our users say:
Posted by: JMDJ | 2010/07/27

Hey Bi,

Thanks so much for that advice. I have to move on as I can''t cope with all the stress. I have already done as you suggested. I have emailed, faxed phoned and more to get him a job. People will not hire him as they all find out that he was drinking on his last job and crashed the company car. I also did what I could to get him to go to AA which has never followed through with. I can honestly say that I''ve done my best to help him but as you said, taking a horse to the water doesn''t neccessarily mean he will drink.

I just feel for him as his family has no time for him, they never have. Mine is the only family he has ever known and now he doesn''t have their support anymore. It''s sad as my sister loves him so much but she was scared of him last night and began to cry. She is my whole world and I cannot have her grow up like that. She is too young to remember but my father was an alcoholic and I know what that can do to a child.

Reply to JMDJ
Posted by: XXX | 2010/07/27

He has had his opportunity to make you happy and treat you with love and respect BUT failed.You have now chosen to move on,so as tough as it might be,stick with it.
Don''t let his failings become your problem.Everyone deserves a partner that makes you happy.
If you are feeling lonely,go out with family and/or friends.You are always welcome to come back to this site and we are all here to support you.
Good luck
PS Take note of the Divorce support forum as well.

Reply to XXX
Posted by: bi | 2010/07/27

Tough love. If he sees that you will not, and simply cannot help him any longer he will be FORCED to sort himself out. Get him the newspaper and make him make phone calls and send his CV out. Go onto job sites on the internet and send his CV off on his behalf if he does not have internet access at home, OR he could himself go to an internet cafe.
You cannot be held responsible for another person''s life and the more you look after him, the more he will think he can get away with it. It''s not easy. It''s not supposed to be.
Action is the only way this will get sorted. I would also PERSONALLY accompany him to AA meetings. Drive him there, it''s free and they also offer support for people who have to deal with alcoholics. Don''t let him live with you, let him sleep on the couch in his family''s house.
He is NOT your responsibility anymore, however, you can still do your best to help him TAKE ACTION and improve his own life because no-one else can do it for him. You can push him to the water, but you can''t force him to drink.
Help where you can. The rest is up to him.
I know you love him, but you gotta go tough else he will continue to take advanatge.
I used to be an alcoholic and my husband divorced me... FORCING me to take control. It''s freaking sobering, I can tell you that. he seemed emotionless when he dropped me off at my sister''s house and told them I am no longer his problem. It seemed so cold, but NOW I can see it was the best thing for me. So I am speaking from experience.
I also did not have a job and I had to arrange one, soon. My sister is not well-off and she could not afford to take care of her family and me.
I got off my a$$, because he kicked me out on my a$$.
Sounds harsh, but for me it was the only way.
I am struggling now but slowly and surely climbing up, but I have a job and I know no-one else will feel sorry for me and look after me like a prince charming.
I am my own princess charming and I gotta do it.
Good luck. You can do it!

Reply to bi
Posted by: cybershrink | 2010/07/27

In some ways, some alcoholics and other substance abusers, and indeed some other disordered folks, almost rely on YOUR difficulty in seeing them suffer, to assume that you will rescue them time and again. I wrote a classic article some years back on "Exactly how many very last chances do you expect ?" Its laudable to want to help, but you can't do it for them.
And sometikes Tough Love is the only potentially helpful reaction - to force them to confront the situation they have created. Unless and until they sincerely become determined to change, they won't do so.
You can't encourage him to take the essential step of taking personal responsibility for his choices, if youi keep on taking the responsibility for him.
Don't be so sensitive to his "suffering" - he's causing suffering for you and your mom, and has probably anaesthetized himself. SADAG ( number on this page ) may be helpful for YOU, in providing a support group to help you through this phase.
AA and AlAnon offer support for the spouses of alcoholics, too, and this may be a useful resource for you.

Reply to cybershrink

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