Thursday, January 15, 2009

Advice...beware it is a long one!

Warning....this is a long post...but i need the advice of people who are not "partial" to either party here...

My ex boyfriend/ boyfriend...whatever, who I have blogged about in a round about way before...the one I was happy to get rid of...John....left Sunday.
Getting him to leave was a hard thing for me to do. I had mixed feelings about it, but knew it was the right thing to do.....and still believe I did the right thing.

To understand this whole thing i need to give you some background.
John was adopted as a baby. Has never met his birth parents, can't find them, didn't have the most loving adoptive parents, no kisses good night or I love you's....which I can't imagine. He left for the Marines the day after high school graduation, completed 8 years. When he got out he stayed in Virginia for several years and worked as a warehouse manager for a medical supply company. He decided to come back to Ohio...couldn't find a job, resorted to bartending. Began drinking pretty heavily. Ended up with a DUI. Continued drinking.....etc.
He and I reconnected, (I knew him 18 years ago, actually I took him to the recruiters office when he left for the Marines) he ended coming up to the city where I live and we hit it off great. He loved my girls, he was fun and they loved him.

I noticed that he drank alot...but I did not notice that he couldn't go without the beer. When it hit me that he couldn't go with out it. I begged him to quit for fear he would drink himself to death, not because he is abusive when drinking, not to me or the kids, none whatsoever, simply because he was bound kill himself. He quit, went thru DT's, drank NA, slowly started to drink again, started to get back up to his normal drinking routine. I started harping again, he would slow down, start again, etc. I finally got to the point that if he didn't want to help himself, neither did I.

Fast forward to Sunday. I dropped him off at a friends house because I had made up my mind I was completely done. I wasn't going to live with an alcoholic who didn't want to help themselves. My kids didn't need to live with it either. Tuesday morning I got a phone call from his son's mother telling me that John was in jail for disorderly conduct, he had gotten in a fight with someone, somewhere, (which is not John at all, he just doesn't fight), So, I went to work Tuesday, called the VA, got information on an inpatient rehabilitation in a city about 1 1/2 hours away. I went to get him from jail after he went to court, (he got a fine and court costs), he asked if he could come home. I said, "No, this is what you are going to do"....told him about the rehab, and that I was taking him to his parents house to stay until he could leave for the rehab...he did not argue about it one time, didn't hesitate...said "ok"......
So, he is at his parents, goes to have his lab work done Tuesday and goes to rehab the following week.

Now, my purpose for this I doing the right thing by sticking by his side during this?
John's positive's: he is very loving, has a big heart, treats me and the kids wonderful, wants a family, wants to be "better", he is helpful around the house, he is fun, he is funny, he is honest, he keeps me honest, he is supportive of me, he gets me, he loves me more than anything and needs me.
John's downfall's: he now has no job due to all of the events that have taken place, had never gotten his driver's license from his DUI 10 years ago, so he doesn't drive, (which I now think is because he knew he would drink and drive again), has a major battle to fight in getting sober.

His attitude is great right now, he wants to do this, says he wishes he would have never picked up the first beer ever, he is excited about going to this rehab and starting a new life, he is talking about going to school, about working, about getting his license, about being a family and saving money and going on trips.....
I love John, would love to be with John without the beer... did I feel trapped by him? YES, while drinking he was still a nice guy, but he was living in a "numb" state all the time. That may be fine for the one drinking but it is hell for the one not drinking. To him bills weren't an issue, money, jobs, etc...that was all clouded by his drinking while those things remained very real to me, the one who wasn't able to suffocate them with sure, I was frustrated...i felt like, 'hey, you don't care enough about yourself or this family to stop drinking...then i don't care about you", I was tired of fighting a battle I wasn't going to win.

Fast forward to today.
John is staying at his parents, (not by choice, he would much rather be at home with us), I am not letting him come home since I feel like,

1. what is that showing the kids? Sure they miss him being around, but they also don't want the drinking
2. I am afraid he won't take me serious and think that once he gets back here he will think that he has won.
3. I want him to seriously think about what he is about to go through and about what he is missing out on by choosing the alcohol over us once again.

I know that if it wasn't for the drinking that John would be a great man. When he is sober he wants to provide, he wants to be a family, he wants to take care of giving him the chance to show us that he can do it so bad? He knows he can't come back until he does this, the kids know that he isn't coming back until he does this....why not give him a chance? I can live with a recovered/recovering alcoholic...I can't live with an alcoholic who doesn't want help. He knows that if he doesn't do this we are gone. He knows if he wants to be a family that this is the only way it is going to happen...he WANTS to do this and has finally admitted that he needs help.

He knows that he has to do this for HIM first...and he says he is...
We do watch Intervention, and there are many times John has cried thru it...I truly believe he wants to quit.

Am I doing the right thing?


Cathy said...

I was married to an addict for 10 years. I think it is great that you are trying to get him some help, but I think you have definitely done your it is up to him.

Young Momma said...

Okay. I know you want someone who isn't partial to you or John... and obviously I'm not, I don't know either one of you. It's hard not to be partial though. At least for me.

My dad was an alcoholic. Unlike John, he was abusive to my mom and my step mom. He didn't ever hit me or my brothers, but he was a jerk when he drank. Which was always. Aside from his mood swings, like you said... it kills them. My dad died at 40. With three teenage kids. My brothers are now both alcoholics and drug addicts. I know that it's their fault and their moms fault for not helping them sooner - but my dad was a huge part of why they do what they do.

Trying to think only of what your talking about with John. I think that the sober John sounds like a great guy. He sounds like he'd be an awesome husband, father, etc. I think that he sounds like he's a happy sober guy, and he makes you happy.

The fact that when he's sober he wants to do good is great. The fact that he is so willing to do this program is great.

I just have to say that I've done this with my brothers. The days when they know they have no choice so they say everything sounds awesome. That they can do it and they want to and it'll never go back to the way it was before... they do the rehab, get good marks by their counselors, and get out happy and healthy. Once their out, they do good for a short while ... and then it's right back to normal. (Did I mention their only 17 and 18? that could by why they don't do it, they have nothing to lose where as John clearly does)

I think you need to stick to your guns. DO NOT let him come back until he proves that he really wants to do this and WILL do this. I think that it's up to you if you want to stick by him in the long run. I think that you and your family may be just what it takes for him to clean up.... but at the same time he has to do it because he wants to, because he's ready to.

I think maybe you should look into some Al-Anon meetings. I'm even looking into them because of my brothers.

Anyway - I've rambled long enough. lol Hope it helps a lil bit.

April said...

Hi Angi,

I definitely agree with Cathy's comment. You have done so much, and then some, to ensure that he gets help...the ball's in his court now. He needs to prove to you that he is ready to make a change, otherwise, I say that all deals are off!

Have you ever watched the show "Intervention"? It's very good, if you've never tuned in. It's all about people who have addictions and the people who are trying to help them. The main message is if the people don't agree to go to rehab and make a change in their lives, then those around them will cut-off all connections. Your boyfriend has got to know, without a doubt, that you mean business!!! Plain and simple!

I wish you the very best in all of this! I know it isn't easy.

sandy said...

You are doing the right thing! You have to think about your girls right now. You can be supportive of him, but he has to take the steps to beat this addiction.

Hang in there! I know it's hard but if he really wants to get well then he will!


Cammie said...

Wow, I think you are wonderful and he is lucky to have you. I think you are doing the right thing so long as everyone is clear that you will NOT stand by and watch him kill hiself. If he wants to get better and makes the effort to do so then by all means be there for him if you love him. If he continues to be destructive then I personally would be done with him. I would not want that sort of influence on my childen. I speak this from somewhat personal 25 year old little sister is going through a divorce and is about to be a single mom of 3 boys. All she wanted was for her husband to stop drinking and be a family with her. In the end she had to do what was best for her and her kids. You will do the right think too

The Wife O Riley said...

I absolutely think you are doing the right thing here. I worked in substance abuse and I've seen people leave just to come back because they don't have the support.

Definitely stick to your guns though, the problem with addicts is that they can believe and make you believe what they want.

Anonymous said...

I think you are handling this perfectly. Distanced but still there for him. He needs help and maybe after rehab he will be different and healthy and at that point you can reassess things. But for now, distance is best.

Sweet Nothings said...

Wow. That's a complicated situation you have there. I think it was a great idea for you to get him into rehab and keep him away from your home and family until he knocks this addiction. It sounds like, besides the addiction, he is a great guy. But don't let him come back until he sticks with the program and fights this disease. I'll keep you and John in my prayers.

In Him,

Mrs. S said...

I agree with Cathy, You have done everything possible to ensure that he gets the help that he needs. Now it is up to him to do what he needs to do. Not just finish rehab, but come home (back to his parents or his own place maybe), get his license and try and get a job. Show you that he is able to maintain, that he can be more stable. And if he truly wants the family and his life, he will try his very hardest to do just that.

Good luck, I will be praying for you and your family. I cant imagine how hard all this must be for you.

Grand Pooba said...

My brother is and addict of pretty much everything and no matter what our family has done to help him, he has to decide for himself. So I think you've done all you can and it's up to him now.

JANE said...

Girl you're doing the absolute right thing!! Stick to it.
If he's willing to go through rehab, stay straight, fine but if he's not.... you'll still be fine without him and so will the girls!

April said...

Wow...this must be so hard for you right now! You have to be strong and stick to your decision for your children. I hope and pray that John will conquer his addiction and be the man that he wants to be.