Time for Al-Anon

When I first came to Al‑Anon about a year ago, I had no idea what to expect. My husband was in recovery, and I wanted to find a way to help myself. My first meeting had me hooked because I felt so welcome. It was nice to be in a room where everyone seemed to understand what I was going through and didn’t pressure me to say anything. At first I just listened, but it wasn’t long before I was able to share with the group. Soon I had gone to two other meetings on other days of the week, and I found two groups nearby in which I felt most at home. The strength and hope of the other members has kept me going. I’m not sure how I would be if I wasn’t able to go to Al‑Anon and find out that my experiences have been normal under the circumstances. I am often busy, but I can always find time for Al‑Anon.

By Cheryl R., Indiana

The Forum, August 2018

2018-07-31T14:44:08+00:00July 31, 2018|Categories: Alcoholic Spouse or Partner, The Forum|

6 Comments

  1. William L. September 2018 at 5:02 pm

    My wife and I have always been casual drinkers. However, on March 30, 2016 we lost our only son, age 52, to the dreaded Pick’s disease. We were devastated then and still are at this tragic loss. In the two and a half years since losing our son, family support, prayer and time has managed to help heal me with strength to go on. My concern, however, is that my beautiful wife is as distraught as the day we lost our son and attempts to drown her sorrows with more and more alcohol and has become an addicted alcoholic consuming alcohol daily. Obviously, our marriage has suffered immensely and I often wonder if she will commit suicide. I’ve been to multiple agencies in town trying to get help for her but they all tell they can’t forcibly remove her from the home against her will for treatment. I have begged her to give up the alcohol but find that’s like talking to the wall. She is 76 years old and consumes at least a fifth of gin daily. I will be 78 years old and have always enjoyed a social drink of alcohol but have not touched a drop for at least four months now. Living with an alcoholic spouse is almost more than I can bear. Friends have suggested al-anon for her and myself in support of her if that’s necessary but I don’t know where to start.

  2. Corey August 2018 at 11:37 am

    Wow. I’m in a similar situation with my narcissistic alcoholic husband. I’m finally trying to find help/support for myself after 5 years of it + an extra 2 from when he had a different addiction. My anxiety keeps me from seeking the support I know I deserve.

  3. Teresa August 2018 at 8:34 pm

    I have been looking for meetings tonight. My husband is the alcoholic and we have nearly broke up many times, but last night was the worst. I always felt like I couldn’t name the problems his drinking has caused. I also grew up with both parents drinking. After reading these stories, I found my self saying, ” yes!” I’m so nervous about going to a meeting alone. Walking in is the worst. I’ll get there though.

  4. Linda V. August 2018 at 4:39 pm

    My husband was so good at dropping guilt, he could do it with a look. We called it the “wither, die” look. But you know who was even better at picking up that look? Me. I thought I was responsible for everything and everybody. What a relief to find that’s not true! Sure, I make mistakes, but I don’t have to TAKE responsibility for all that goes wrong just because someone else thinks it’s mine. Thank God for Al-Anon. I can take a step back. I don’t have to assert my opinion, I don’t have to rebut, I can just walk away, read a book, take a walk, call a friend. I can enjoy life even if the person closest to me is not happy.

  5. Heidi August 2018 at 9:23 pm

    [This] story is so very similar to mine. I can relate to everything… What struck me most was how… your husband berates you in front of your daughter and how he tells you that you have failed as a mother. My husband does the same thing, and it is extremely hurtful. I’ve certainly made many, many mistakes as a parent and he capitalizes on my guilt. You aren’t alone in your struggle. Thank you for sharing because it helped me not feel so alone.

  6. Frankie R. August 2018 at 9:25 pm

    What Now?
    My husband has been drinking nightly for years now. He’s what I consider a functional alcoholic. Somehow he gets up every day and goes to work. He used to not take any risk, like driving when he’d even had one drink. Things are changing. I fear that he will leave one day and I end up getting a call that he’s either been arrested or was in an accident.
    I’ve made the mistake many times of trying to talk to him while he’s been drinking. It’s only backfired, turned into an argument or he’s turned on me. I feel so helpless as he won’t admit that there’s any kind of problem. His father died, then his mother. It was bad then, but It got worse when I lost my job, then we lost our house. For a long time he would get drunk sometimes two times a night. Our daughter would ask me, “why is daddy dizzy?”. He didn’t seem to care that she noticed he was drunk. Over time, he’s alienated both me and our daughter, by staying in the garage when he gets home from work. He rarely spends any time with us. He has always threatened that he would leave me if I dare tried to challenge him. He has nothing to work on or improve. Pretty much, I am the problem. He has accused me of being unfaithful, twisting my words to suit him. Blames me for all of our problems, our daughter’s problems. He berates me in front of our daughter, constantly telling me how I’ve failed as a mother. Told me I’ve created a monster. She is in therapy for many reasons and he refuses to be a part of it. Not willing to accept that he has any part in our daughter’s current struggles. She knows he drinks and it really bothers her. My daughter is very angry and takes it out on me when I know some of her anger is about her father. He often tells me, “who do I think I am” if I try to confront him. Talk about walking on eggshells. Whatever I say, I’m wrong or he ends up making me feel like I’m in the wrong. I haven’t made it to Al-Anon yet, but I’ve looked up meetings in my area with plans to attend.

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