And so it goes…

308 days ago when I quit drinking (and smoking), I told myself that I would give the relationship that I was in a year, and re-evaluate then. I knew that the relationship was bad, I knew that it had been bad for a long time, but being who I am, I shouldered a lot of the blame. I thought that maybe if I got sober then a lot of the problems would go away too.

The sad part is that it was problems in the relationship that I was drinking to hide from that escalated my drinking to what it became. I didn’t want to go home to an angry boyfriend; I didn’t want to deal with the drama that constantly surrounded him with his ex wife and son. I didn’t want to go home to a house that didn’t even feel like a home to me. I felt displaced and out of sorts and unhappy. Really, really unhappy. Drinking numbed that. I was for the most part a happy drunk. I also craved human touch and intimacy and the only way I got that from him was to get drunk and take the initiative, because he is not one to show signs of affection. He would get mad at me for wanting sex too often. He would get mad at me for “hugging up against him” in bed. I would feel sad and lonely and desperate for a loving touch or even a compliment (which I never got either). I tried not to take it personally and just accept that THAT was who HE was and that was his personality and let’s face it – everyone has different personalities and comfort levels with showing affection and being intimate.

I felt tricked though – lied to and cheated and tricked because I had believed that he was the victim in his marriage and that his wife was crazy and had treated him so horribly. Poor, poor guy. I spoiled him and put him on a pedestal and treated him like a king at the beginning, and made excuses for his bad behaviour and thought that things would change. There were so, SO many signs that I ignored, and every once in a while he’d do something nice so I truly believed that we could have a nice life together. When other people were around or when we were out at the bar or party with a group of friends then he was a completely different person. He would put his arm around me (holy crow!), he would engage me in the conversation and he would be all happy and smiling and getting lots of attention as he domineered the conversation and told stories and got attention.

Once I quit drinking, I had to face all of those feelings, and really start re-evaluating. In the beginning of my sobriety when he was so completely unsupportive – bringing home alcohol to stock the cupboards with, getting mad at me for not going to the bar with him (but also refusing to go anywhere different with me), feeling sorry for himself and making himself out to be the victim because boo-fucking-hoo, Donna isn’t a fun party girl anymore and this is affecting HIS life so drastically <insert eye roll here>, I was just trying to keep myself sober and going through my own personal hell, by myself (thank god for this blog and the amazing people here). Then he started cancelling our planned vacations because they wouldn’t be fun for him if it didn’t involve sitting in a bar or sitting on a beach drinking. Before my trip to the Yukon and Alaska in the Spring, I tried to talk him into coming with me but he wouldn’t. That actually turned out to be the turning point – a heavenly break away from his anger and constant negativity and after returning from there 3 months ago I started sleeping in the spare room and we basically just became 2 people living in the same house.

I also started focusing more on myself, getting exercise and getting out of the house and having some fun and making some new friends. The less time I spent around him (and he was out until really late with ball+bar several times a week anyway) the happier and more carefree I felt. The less I wanted to hide away and the more I wanted to embrace and enjoy life. It’s hard to do that when you’re around someone who finds the negative in absolutely everything.

And then… it all came to a head a few days ago when he confronted me about what was going on. The thing about the controlling personality types is that they’re very happy when they have complete control and they’re happy when the person they’re with is under that control, doing what the controller wants – especially if it is waiting at home patiently for them, meekly and mildly. I’m not really a meek and mild, wait at home type of person though haha… and that angers him, because he doesn’t have control. He had a big fit and made himself out to be the victim (no surprise there, I was fully anticipating that).

Two parts of the long & frustrating conversation with him:

Him: So what… I’m not allowed to go out drinking and having fun anymore? I have to stay home with you because you’re not drinking?
Me: I never, ever said that or asked that of you. I have absolutely no problem with you going out with your friends and drinking. No problem with that at all. I am getting out hiking and exploring. Would you like to join me for that? (he says no). I didn’t think so.

Him: I wouldn’t get mad if you came to the bar and didn’t drink, or if you started drinking again.
Me: (calmly) I don’t really give a shit if you did or didn’t get mad at me for not drinking. I’m putting myself and my sobriety first here, and doing what I need to do to stay sober.
Him: OH, THAT’S NICE – SO YOU DON’T GIVE A SHIT ABOUT MY FEELINGS?!
Me: What? I said I’m putting my sobriety first and I don’t give a shit if you do or don’t get mad that I’m not drinking
Him: EXACTLY! You don’t give a shit about my feelings!

Seriously, what the hell! He is 55 yrs old and more exhausting to deal with than a toddler having a temper tantrum.

I managed to keep my calm for a conversation that should have been really difficult and was filled with a sense of relief when I told him that yes, it’s over (realistically it has been for months). I’ve been unhappy for a long time and things aren’t working out and I tried to do it in a way where I shouldered the blame and told him that we just have two very different personalities. I don’t want things to get ugly. I know that he will play the victim to his friends and family. I know that it’s not going to be smooth. I have been dreading this because of his controlling and angry personality. It was a lot easier for me to just live in the shadows mainly being ignored and unnoticed. Now I just have to figure out living arrangements (I still have my old house but there are renters in it, so it won’t be a sudden quick move unfortunately). The GOOD thing is that most of my stuff is still packed in boxes because he never wanted me to put any of my stuff out in the house! I seriously have clothes to pack, one end table next to the couch with some pictures and a salt lamp on it, some scented wax warmers, coffee cups and a few other odds and ends and that’s it (if there was any question on why it hasn’t felt like a home to me).

Sheesh, why didn’t someone warn me that this was what sobriety looked like? heehee. 😉

 

38 comments

  1. nursinggrudgesandliquor · August 29, 2017

    Good for you! Moving forward.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. saoirsek · August 29, 2017

    Tough but it sounds like the right thing. You are amazing…just so you know Sx

    Liked by 2 people

    • shehidbehindtheglass · August 29, 2017

      Thank you saoirsek. It is a tough situation (I probably make it sound more flippant and easy than it actually is), but it is definitely the right choice at this point. I am feeling a lot more intuned to my feelings and reactions and the ones I have had the past few months around him really concern me – I can’t imagine spending years more like this. Been there before. Thanks for stopping by ❤

      Liked by 3 people

  3. Elizabeth · August 29, 2017

    Good move! Bravo to you for your willingness to forge a new and better life for yourself. Oh, how I relate to the part about not seeing things for what they were and ignoring all those very obvious little red flags. Been there and done that- I pray I have learned. My ex-husband also didn’t want me to put my stuff around (it was his home)- in fact when I was moving in, he arrived with the U-Haul first and I found him picking and choosing which of my things to put out and which would go up in the attic!!! I can be such an idiot when it comes to men. UGH.

    Liked by 4 people

    • shehidbehindtheglass · August 29, 2017

      Elizabeth, thanks for stopping by! When I moved into the house (his house, and he asked me to move in), he didn’t even get off the couch – just sat there and watched me bring boxes in and told me to put them down in the basement. In hindsight I should have turned around right then and there! Oh well, we live and we learn, and then we learn some new lessons lol 🙂

      Liked by 3 people

  4. bluebird487 · August 29, 2017

    Sad news but good news. You are very strong to have put up with so much temptation and negativity in your life in what can be such a fragile time. You have grown and changed and that can be hurtful/confusing to those people in your life that stay stagnant. Nice job communicating and loving yourself first and foremost! You made a valiant effort to save a relationship and it is not a failure but a step forward in a sober rewarding life. You rock! ❤

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Untipsyteacher · August 29, 2017

    Hi Donna!
    I am really proud of you. You are a strong lady, who is making a healthy choice for yourself.
    I know it’s not easy.
    I am so impressed with all the travel and exploring you did by yourself, too.
    Bug Hugs!!!
    xoxo
    Wendy

    Liked by 2 people

  6. moderndaygrl · August 29, 2017

    Holy moly. Staying strong though… that guy though, oh I’d have words haha

    Liked by 2 people

  7. breakthemundane · August 29, 2017

    Talk about a huge weight being lifted off your shoulders. What a burden to carry for so long, but you’ve made the best decision, and now you can move on and learn to heal and reward yourself with a happier and more fulfilling life. Bravo!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. winoholicblog · August 29, 2017

    Good for you, you come first. I know it must have been a hard decision to make, but this is the start of a new life for you.

    Liked by 1 person

    • shehidbehindtheglass · August 29, 2017

      Thank you, yes it was a very hard one, but I’m sure in my heart that it was the best one.

      Like

  9. Dewy · August 30, 2017

    1/ start giving your tenants notice. Over here I think they get 6 weeks notice.
    2/ once the house is free do it to your liking
    3/ move
    Easy as 1,2,3.
    Stuff what people say it’s your life and life is too short if you ask me.
    You’ve been generous with him giving him a year. I’d have gave him a week or 2 max.

    Liked by 1 person

    • shehidbehindtheglass · August 30, 2017

      You’re such a tough cookie Dewy. I needed to take the time – my emotions were so wild at the beginning it was insane. I needed to know in my heart that this was the right decision.

      Liked by 2 people

      • Dewy · August 30, 2017

        😊 sometimes it’s easier to fix other people’s problem than our own. I’m not tough at all. Just practical.
        You’ve been very inspiring. Your wings need to fly.

        Liked by 2 people

      • shehidbehindtheglass · August 30, 2017

        Aww thank you Dewy.

        Liked by 1 person

  10. ainsobriety · August 30, 2017

    You are awesome

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Finding a Sober Miracle · August 30, 2017

    Hallelujah! Free at last, oh Lord, free at last!! I feel so released, even though this more about you, isn’t it? And you don’t even need lawyers! I am so so happy for you. Wow, you will be reborn. It’s nice when that strong kick-ass girl wakes up, isn’t it? 💕💕

    Liked by 2 people

  12. Adrian · August 30, 2017

    I’m psyched for you that you’ve found clarity in this. Be safe, though. When the person tries to leave the controlling person can be very dangerous — I’m not sure what resources my favorite wise columnist (Carolyn Hax) recommends for this, though it may be Gavin de Becker’s “Gift of Fear.” Blessings to you on the next stage of your journey!

    Liked by 2 people

    • shehidbehindtheglass · August 30, 2017

      Thanks Adrian. I just googled her and I can see how I’ll be spending my work break later – I love reading those advice columns! I will also look up that book. 🙂

      Like

  13. furtheron · September 4, 2017

    The good thing about sobriety is … you get your feelings back. The bad thing about sobriety is….. You get your feelings back!

    Sorry this is so hard for you. I remember some hassles in my early recovery “You’re no fun anymore”. “Surely you can just go along you don’t have to drink”….

    In the end we somehow have come to some compromises. I always have a way out, either I have the keys and I will drive off without her if I feel like it. That happened couple of times. She’s then returned angry at stupid o’clock drunkenly arguing I “abandoned” her. Of course she forgotten the conversation several hours before where I’ve said “I’m feeling unsafe and I want to go.” “You go then you boring old git I’ll get home ok”…. She’s an adult – her choice…

    However we haven’t have one like that in years. Now she normally just puts on the calendar – “Night out” and it is for her only. Fair enough. if she returns drunk now at least there isn’t some dumb argument about it.

    I regularly say that my marriage surviving 32 years is a miracle. Actually the biggest miracle of that is the last 13 years I’ve been sober rather than the drinking years where I was a passive person in many ways in the relationship. Maybe we’re just one of those many boring 50 something couples with grown kids who just are stuck in the rut but whatever… it’s comfortable and acceptable.

    Good luck on your journey I hope you reach a comfortable and acceptable place for yourself – and the same for your other half but that is largely his journey not yours.

    Liked by 1 person

    • shehidbehindtheglass · September 4, 2017

      Thank you Furtheron. Everyone’s journey in life is so different, it’s amazing and curious and I love hearing about other people’s journeys. Thank you for the words of encouragement, they are greatly appreciated.

      Like

  14. Hurrahforcoffee · September 4, 2017

    Hi Donna,

    I know it must be horrible for you but this is a good thing. You deserve a man that wants the best for you. You deserve understanding, respect and nourishment. Settling for a man that wants you back in that pit of despair is dangeous. Maybe he will come around one day and realise what happened. In the meantime, I am sooooo proud of you for taking that step. You are looking after and loving yourself. Much love and hugs to you. xxxx

    Liked by 1 person

    • shehidbehindtheglass · September 5, 2017

      Hurrah, sadly I don’t think that he has the personality to realize what happened. He will have lots of support through this though as he has just spent the last week in full blown victim mode getting as much sympathy from his friends and relatives as he can. I have been busy decluttering my stuff to prepare for the move in a few weeks)well, trying anyway!) 😊 thanks for your support, it means a lot to me.

      Liked by 2 people

      • Hurrahforcoffee · September 5, 2017

        Ah the victim role. have you heard of the codependancy traingle thingie? I am no expert but have done some reading about it to understand what happens with two addicts in a relationship. Thinking of you lady. xxx

        Liked by 1 person

      • shehidbehindtheglass · September 5, 2017

        Looking it up right now….
        Interesting… funny thing is that I’m reading the one on queenbeing.com and sitting here feeling sick reading it, shaking my head and just feeling so thankful that I’m getting out of this situation before I did end up drinking again. Thank sweetie 🌈🦄

        Like

  15. MeditationAndNoBooze · September 5, 2017

    You can do it! Go!!

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Mark David Goodson · September 6, 2017

    Geez. I hope no one told you it would be easy! It’s hard when you’re changing and the people around you aren’t. Usually, they don’t know what to do so they just resent you for the change, even if its positive. Keep kicking ass and staying sober!

    Liked by 1 person

    • shehidbehindtheglass · September 6, 2017

      Thank you Mark! I’m currently counting and celebrating every sober day again. 316 today!! Less than 50 til a full year, that’s wild!!

      Liked by 1 person

  17. Pingback: Figuring It Out – Dewy's Place
  18. soberisland · September 21, 2017

    How are you doing now?

    Liked by 1 person

    • shehidbehindtheglass · September 26, 2017

      I’m good! Finally out of that terrible situation. I think that sometimes we just get used to things or focus on surviving and making it though that we actually don’t realize how bad it really is until we’re able to look at it from a different perspective eh? 🙂

      Like

      • soberisland · September 26, 2017

        Good- you haven’t posted in a while so I was just wondering…. breaking up is rough even if it is for the best

        Liked by 1 person

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