When my spouse retired, his behaviour changed. I couldn’t understand what was happening, especially when he became verbally aggressive toward me for trivial matters. I found an online story from someone describing what she termed a dry drunk. The behaviours she listed matched those of my spouse, and she suggested Al‑Anon. My first meeting was difficult. I arrived early and sat in my car, terrified of entering. I was so ashamed of being unable to handle this situation on my own. I almost went home, but something deep inside gave me the courage I needed to stay.
The group was welcoming and gentle; however, I soon realized the members of this meeting were not a good fit for me. Armed with a list of alternate meetings in our area, I started trying others out. It still took a lot of effort to go to my second meeting place, but it was so much easier than the first. I was beginning to see that it wasn’t an act of cowardice to attend meetings, but an act of bravery. I now know I’m not alone and each person’s sharing is helping me discover strands of strength within me.
By Mary, British Columbia
The Forum, April 2019
Omigosh, thank you for your share; I’ve been feeling so guilty the last few weeks because my first meeting was not a good fit, and I’ve been making excuses not to go because I thought it was something wrong with me. I’ve just now written down the days and times for two other meetings to try and I feel really good about taking that next step. I feel like a weight just lifted off my shoulders!
Thank you! What you wrote is so true… It’s even more frightening when you get to your first meeting and realize it’s not a good fit…l am SO glad to hear you had the courage to try again. Your post is inspiring.
Thank you for sharing. I am feeling the same but am finding some courage to take this step that seems very difficult.