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 Post subject: Scorn Flakes
PostPosted: Sun Oct 08, 2017 12:38 am 
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I’ve mentioned some of this in passing in previous posts to other threads, but in regards to my family dynamic post addiction treatment, things...Things could be better.

In late 2014, my wife was diagnosed with late stage thyroid cancer. We got treatment in February of 2015, and as of now, she’s in remission, albeit, sans thyroid. About six months after her thyroidectomy, I came clean with her about my Norco abuse. It rocked our marriage to be sure, and we were in the express lane for divorce before I checked in for outpatient treatment for my opioid addiction, and have been on Zubsolv ever since.

Very recently, my doctor upped my dose a second time and was kind enough to prescribe me Prozac for my anxiety. In wanting to be honest with my wife, I told her about the Prozac script. Now I wish to God I hadn’t.

It’s not every day, but since she found out about my low dose of Prozac, my wife keeps whipping it out with these scornful comments about it. This morning she mentioned “how nice it must be to have Prozac,” as she faces her stresses and anxieties unmedicated. The upshot of the thing is that even if she was prescribed mood meds—and I’m beginning to think she should be; her mother, uncle and grandmother are all textbook borderline personality disorder—I doubt very much that she would touch them as she abhors almost all western medicine in favor of homeopathic remedies. In the past, she has admitted to not understanding my addiction, or my underlying bipolar disorder. And I can’t say I’m angry with her, only that my home life is becoming more stressful than my worklife—work has driven me near mental collapse in the past—which is a dangerous place to be as I have no respite from the chaos. Nor, I guess, does she. But working through it is tough as there always seems to be a mile radius of eggshells surrounding her. I need someone I can talk to, and she claims to be that person, but I don’t feel that is correct. This forum is, as of right now, my only outlet.


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 Post subject: Re: Scorn Flakes
PostPosted: Sun Oct 08, 2017 9:55 am 
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Hi Scorn so sorry to hear about all your stress! All I can say is that you need a life partner who is going to love and support you 24/7! Living with the added stress of an unhealthy marriage is not good for your recovery or hers. Have you thought about counseling? Good luck! I will say a prayer that things get better!


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 Post subject: Re: Scorn Flakes
PostPosted: Sun Oct 08, 2017 12:20 pm 
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Hi Michelle F,

Thanks for your response! We have tried counseling in the past. In fact, our marriage counselor was the one who gave me all of the info about the outpatient recovery program I went through. Unfortunately, I’m his private life, he was going through a divorce of his own—not a great sign for a marriage and family counselor—and would often fall asleep during our sessions. We have not, as yet, found another. On the whole, I’d say my wife is supportive in the big things. She supports me going to grad school. She knows how much I hate my job and will sometimes encourage me through rough spots. I have to be careful though, as she does not handle stress well. Physically. We both believe pretty strongly that she has fibromyalgia or something similar in the autoimmune category. She watches our fourteen month old son pretty much 24-7. When I look at it, she’s got a lot going on and some days have to be absolute hell. I don’t ask her for much because I already know she’s giving her all to our son. And I appreciate that. I try to be there for her as much as my schedule allows, but with grad school and a full time job that amounts to a few hours divided between morning and evening, and maybe one day out of the week where we get to see and talk to one another. It’s lonely. For both of us. I think she thinks I have some kind of social life at work or at school, and while I do have friends in both places, I don’t keep very close friendships, so my social interactions outside of our relationship are minimal. I’m not currently socially capable of having an affair, so we won’t be adding infidelity to my list of offenses anytime soon. But where I get frustrated is where my attempts to help her out are not enough. I’ll give her anything. Even when there’s nothing left to give, and she’ll often look that gift horse in the mouth and find it wanting. Some days things are awesome and I come home to a happy wife, and others, not so much and I come home to a fight that’s been prepared for me. The inconsistency is destroying my nerves, making me a wreck, and is probably more responsible for my anxiety than work and school combined. I never know what I’m coming home to, but I’m learning to read the signs.


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 Post subject: Re: Scorn Flakes
PostPosted: Sun Oct 08, 2017 6:09 pm 
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Hi Bunson, sorry I called you by the wrong name in the previous message! The way you describe not knowing what mood your wife will be in when you get home makes me wonder if she might have an undiagnosed mental health issue? That is just horrible about your previous counselor! Why not seach for a new one? I wish you much luck! I always say, if the love is there, the rest can be found and rebuilt!


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 Post subject: Re: Scorn Flakes
PostPosted: Sun Oct 08, 2017 7:02 pm 
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No worries, Michelle, Bunson isn’t my real REAL name either, really just an online moniker I’ve concocted.

I would argue that the love is still there. I do love my wife and I don’t want to split. I think we’re one of those couples that has all the right things in common: We have similar ideals when it comes to travel, family time, and so on. Money has been our biggest downfall as a couple, I’d say. My wife comes from an emotionally abusive family, wherein her father basically dragged the family down into financial ruin over the course of her childhood and early adulthood. Financially speaking, I come from similar roots. Growing up, my family ate food rescued from grocery store dumpsters, and all of my clothes came from K-Mart, and only then after sitting for at least a month on lay away. The upshot is, she’s very tight with money, and as an addict, money is more obstacle than object between me and whatever it is I’ve determined I just have to have. I know I’m this way and I hate myself for it. My wife is great at saving money, but I’m the proverbial fool from whom money soon parts ways. I recently had a birthday, and this is the first time in years I spent that birthday money on something other than a mind or mood altering substance. I feel really bad about all of it, but even when I spend a little, say on lunch or a snack somewhere, I’m apt to get audited either by text message or when I arrive home. I’ve tried to share the responsibility of bills with my wife in the past, but she can be very controlling of that aspect of our life and doesn’t always trust me to do the right thing. And, truth be told, when cash has run low, I’ve used credit to get kratom or similar to the tune of around $400 over a three or four month period. I don’t spend a ton anymore, but I live in fear of financial “conversations” with my wife.

I really ought to find another counselor, and I have looked but haven’t called. The last time I brought it up my wife didn’t seem too interested in it, that it would be more for my benefit than for hers. She was having a rough day yesterday morning and I texted her in the afternoon to say I hoped her day was going well. This only had the effect of hurting her feelings as she says she needed encouragement. I guess I don’t always know what to say, and it goes without saying that I’m not a mind reader. I just feel so frustrated sometimes that in trying to do or say the right thing it doesn’t match up with whatever unspoken thing it is she wants from me, which leads to accusations of not being in the same boat, on the same page, etc. Like the Eminem/Rhianna song, “when it’s going good it’s going great,” but when it’s not, God help us all.


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 Post subject: Re: Scorn Flakes
PostPosted: Mon Oct 09, 2017 3:36 pm 
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Hey bunson!

I agree with Michelle in getting a counselor (a new one). What gets me is ur wife saying it's more for u than anything else...... no it isn't. It's for both. Surly she doesn't see u as the only problem in ur relationship. I'm sure ur a part of it but so is she, nobody is perfect. Relationships have issues sometimes that's equally got to be worked on. Throw in addiction and a mother taking care of a small child 24/7 and that can really cause some stress in any loving relationship.

I know u surly love ur wife and I'm sure she loves u also but everyone has to be willing to admit their faults. If u both can do that then there's hope for things to get better imo. U seem to be really trying and bending over backwards, that's how I see it. Ur also working and going to school, trying to show how u have changed. Yes u have made mistakes in the past but u don't have to pay for those mistakes over and over again forever. U not being able to spend a dollar on something without fearing the wrath from her is unfair regardless of ur past. How long have u been in recovery? I'm sorry I can't remember. If u haven't been in recovery long, then maybe the trust just hasn't built up enough yet. If that's the case then the more u show her, in time she will come around (as long as ur doing the right things).

Women that stay at home taking care of small children can easily be stressed out. I've been there and let me tell ya it is tough! I'd rather work any day than do that 24/7. That may sound selfish but I don't care, it's hard lol. She probably resents u a little bit that u can get out of the house and socialize because she may feel a little stuck at times. This is also 100% normal I feel.

U both have major stressors going on individually, I totally understand how that can strain ur marriage a bit. I sure hope u two can get some counseling and start understanding each other a little bit. If ur recovery stays good and the little one starts getting more and more independent..... things can definitely get better. Don't give up! But I also know that both ppl have to be willing to change, not just one doing all the changing. That isn't fair, hopefully she'll see her faults and triggers as well.

Gosh! I'm sorry I wrote a book!

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 Post subject: Re: Scorn Flakes
PostPosted: Mon Oct 09, 2017 4:16 pm 
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Jennjenn, thank you as always for your heartfelt response. You are always very on point, and have once again hit the nail right on the head.

I think that my wife is frustrated by our previous counselor and isn’t anxious to repeat the experience. It isn’t so much that she won’t acknowledge her own faults, but I worry that some of those faults run a little deeper than either of us really wants to admit. Given the run of borderline personality disorder that is painfully apparent in her mother, her uncle and her grandmother, I often worry that I’m seeing the beginnings of it in her. My mother in law is one of the most emotionally abusive people I have ever met, and my wife sees and knows what is going on there, and has actively tried to instill healthy boundaries in all of her relationships. Ultimately, I don’t think my wife has BPD, but I do see hints of her mom coming out when she’s hurt or angry or both, and while I wouldn’t dare tell her she’s acting like her mom, it’s hard not to invite the comparison just the same.

And yeah, watching our son is like two full time jobs. I watch him in the mornings so she can get an extra hour or two of sleep, and when she has business ouraise the house. All things considered, she does have some social outlets. Really more than I do, in a purely social sense. I go to school, I go to work, but apart from my wife, I don’t maintain really any close, regular friendships outside the bounds of those two places. My wife teaches classes at a homeschool co-op, and has a mothers of preschoolers group she’s actively involved in, as well as book club and women’s bible study. It’s a lot to manage, and our son makes it tougher.

Yesterday, she hosted a Lularoe party at or house while I was at work. I work at a mall, and on my lunch break I went and bought a pair of shorts and t-shirt on clearance from H&M. I used birthday money and all told spent less than $20. This morning my wife suspiciously asked if I had bought clothes because I knew she was buying clothes—I had no idea—and was feeling somehow left out. It’s the idea of getting something the other doesn’t as a way of signifying a unique treat, as though she feels like it was her birthday and I somehow insisted on receiving a gift also. She apologized later for being “out of sorts,” but the question and subsequent comments left me feeling bad about something I don’t think I should feel bad about. We live in Southern California where all we get are different flavors of summer, and I needed a new pair of shorts. The last two times I got new clothes, apart from buying an outfit for a wedding I was in were Christmas and Fathers Day, and were both gifts from my wife. Other than that, I hardly ever buy new clothes. I have shirts in my closet that would be starting second grade this year if they were children.

Anyway, things continue to go as they go. I’m looking into a new counselor, and will broach the topic with my wife soon enough. Thank you again!


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 Post subject: Re: Scorn Flakes
PostPosted: Fri Oct 20, 2017 12:35 am 
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I was able to see a little more of the elephant in the room tonight, concerning my wife. I was going out to pick up water and our toddler son got excited and wanted to go which turned into a family trip to the water store (we buy the reverse osmosis stuff six gallons at a time) and dinner out at Chipotle. Each stop, I was the only one to get out of the car. When we got home, my wife threw her back out trying to grab little man out of the backseat, so I ended up bringing in baby, water and dinner all. As I was serving up dinner, I asked my wife if she would like a fork, to which she responded in the affirmative. I then asked if she wanted standard or plastic as I had grabbed plastic forks from Chipotle as I was walking back out to the car. At that moment, our Boston Terrier, Stella, knocked my little boy over, making him cry. In the hubbub of running from living room to kitchen and back, delivering dinner, my wife shouts in a “what are you? Stupid or something?” kind of tone: “I don’t want a plastic f*cking fork?! Oh my God?!” That’s a long walk around the block to reach the simple point that, even under the same or worse circumstances, I don’t talk to my wife like that. Maybe when I was drinking, but even then only when she had frustrated me no end. I didn’t say anything, didn’t make anything of it, but it was another patch of the elephant that I was able to identify: My wife has lost a lot of (if not all of) her respect for me. Even when we were in the car, running errands, I felt like I was a teenager running out with his authoritarian mother. I don’t know how to approach her about it. Given the current respect deficit, I don’t see it being very productive. Am I reading this wrong?


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 Post subject: Re: Scorn Flakes
PostPosted: Fri Oct 20, 2017 11:07 am 
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Bunson, I hate to always be the person answering ya :) maybe someone else will chime in later. I also read another post of yours yesterday and I was wondering if it would help if u just took a break for a little bit. It doesn't have to be permanent, but things don't usually just get better on their own in a lot of these situations. You can't be the only person wanting to fix things. You're afraid to be home at times because of her anger and attitude. I know u have a little one but let me tell ya, that little one can see and sense the tension and arguments.

U could be right about ur wife has this resentment towards u from ur using days but how long will she be punishing u for that? Before I was addicted (didn't become addicted until my 30's) my son's father was an addict. I'd see him making huge mistakes over and over, then go get help and straighten up, then go bk to using again..... he got my hopes up constantly thinking he was going to 'change'. I wasn't personally familiar with addiction during that time and it really played on my trust and hopes for our future. Maybe u haven't had enough time to show ur wife she can trust u again or this time in recovery is different. I don't know ur back history but I'm hoping it's something like this because I'm not understanding why ur wife is being so mean.

Regardless of the reason she's got this animosity towards u, something should really change. I just wonder if she truly understands how much her attitude is affecting u. She may need to know ur not willing to do this emotional merry go round much longer. I think she needs to maybe see that ur not a pushover and u need something to change.

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 Post subject: Re: Scorn Flakes
PostPosted: Sat Oct 21, 2017 9:35 pm 
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It’s alright, Jenn, and thanks once again for responding to my pissing and meaning. I need to quit enumerating my troubles and start dealing with them. I’ve been having a rough week in general, kind of psyching myself out with some hopefully groundless fears. I’m high risk for prostate cancer, as my dad was diagnosed with it in his early 50s. It was early detection and he’s in remission, but lately, I’ve been having some urine retention and frequency issues that have me feeling more than a little concerned. I’ve neglected getting a baseline started—shame on me—and have been self sabotaging as far as seeking medical attention. Anyone reading this now knows more about my concerns and symptoms than my doctor does. Anyway, that fear has ruined more than one perfectly okay day this week. I’ll keep y’all posted. Thank you again!


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 Post subject: Re: Scorn Flakes
PostPosted: Sun Oct 22, 2017 8:04 am 
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It's extremely slow on the forum lately, slowest I think I've ever seen it for this long of time.

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 Post subject: Re: Scorn Flakes
PostPosted: Sun Oct 22, 2017 2:47 pm 
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Yeah, I’ve noticed that. And I haven’t been much help, What with only posting about my own problems. It’s unfortunate, because this really is a good outlet, and a nice place to seek/give advice, as long you’re okay with a slight delay. Here’s hoping things pick up soon!


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 Post subject: Re: Scorn Flakes
PostPosted: Mon Oct 23, 2017 11:00 am 
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No worries about posting about ur problems, that's what this place is for bunson. After ur issues hopefully get sorted out, you'll be able to help someone else struggling with things like u did. That's how we all help each other around here :)

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 Post subject: Re: Scorn Flakes
PostPosted: Mon Oct 23, 2017 11:50 am 
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Hi BB,

Jenn is correct. It seems like there's been almost nobody posting on the forum lately. I just don't get it. Maybe they all got better!

Your problems are so messed up I think its hard for others to offer any kind of advice, myself included. The most you're going to get here is support and encouragement. Yes, she needs to understand addiction and mental health problems in todays world. Another therapist might be able to get through to her. How you put up with that is a miracle. If there were an award given out you'd be first on the list to get it. And it would have to include a year off from life in general. (insert laughter)

Try to convince her to go together for some more therapy. Coming off her illness is an excuse but not forever. Its an equal partnership between you two.

Sorry, don't have any good answers for you. Just hang in there and do the best you can.

BD

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 Post subject: Re: Scorn Flakes
PostPosted: Fri Oct 27, 2017 1:54 am 
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BD and Jennjenn, thank you both. I’d take a little consistency over a medal any day. This last week has been pretty good, but tonight had all the warning signs of some rough stuff. Honestly, I think my wife has some form of martyr complex. I was washing dishes so she wouldn’t have to and stopped for all of a minute to answer an inbound text from a friend in Wisconsin who was heading to bed. She came in and started doing the dishes where I left off. And when she starts, there’s no stopping her. She cited the rag “just sitting there” as the indication that I wasn’t going to come back to any of it. And it wasn’t like it was a big deal one way or the other and I didn’t let it dissolve into a fight, but ultimately, when she gets tired, she takes the counterintuitive approach and does more things to furthe exhaust herself. I’ve known her to vacuum and mop the whole house and clean the bathrooms near on to midnight on days where she is “to the wall” exhausted. And she’s none the better for the clean house when it’s all said and done. I ask her to stop so I can finish and do it for her, but she won’t allow me to help. Because if she does it all herself then she has that to add to that long list of things she does that makes her special. I can’t remember the last time I had a harder day than her, by her reckoning.

It sucks. And yeah, we probably do need a better counselor. Doubtless I’m painting this at least slightly it not entirely in the ugly colors of my own perception, but I’m the only one around here who sees her actions as slightly south of normal. Again, I’d take consistency over a medal any day. Even if it was just consistently bad, at least I’d know what game we’re playing and what the score is. I’m going to have to resort back to text probing to ascertain her mood before my drive home each evening.

Anyway, there I go again. I know love doesn’t keep a record of wrongs, and it’s not so much that I feel she has wronged me, but I have been keeping a private note on my phone to try and document these events as they occur so I can look back and see if perhaps I was wrong to feel the way I did. I was doing that for a while a couple of years ago and deleted it shortly after she forgave me for my most recent addiction related fuckup. Now I wish I hadn’t. But oh well.

Thank you guys! For everything. I don’t want this to just be an echo chamber. If you see or perceive something from me that needs to be called out for the bullshit it is, please go right ahead. You’re both wonderful. Thank you!

B. Byrner


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 Post subject: Re: Scorn Flakes
PostPosted: Fri Oct 27, 2017 3:32 pm 
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Gosh bunson, it's bad that u have to scope her mood out before u get home to prepare urself for what mood ur going to have to endure! That's not good and u do deserve a medal for still sticking around. I hate to say that but geez, I feel for ya.

U know what, my dad is always complaining about mowing a big yard and always having to work on things that tear up and it's 'wearing him out' yada yada. My fiancé has offered to come mow and he runs and does it the day before he said he'd be there knowing he had help coming. My fiancé was going to help fix something at dads house and he quickly fixed that before my fiancé could do that..... but my dad complained the whole time about how hard it was on him to be fixing it! He had help coming lol! I think he just wanted everyone to think he does it all. That's what ur dishes story reminds me of.

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 Post subject: Re: Scorn Flakes
PostPosted: Fri Oct 27, 2017 6:55 pm 
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That sounds like something my wife might do. When I tell her I’ll do something, unless I tuck into it immediately, she will sometimes jump in and do it stating she didn’t know when I was going to get around to it. Unless it’s instantaneous, she doesn’t take much on faith.

All things considered, I’ve let her down a lot. As an addict with bipolar disorder and all that, I have a hard time with money. It’s something I’ve gotten in trouble with her over time and time again. It doesn’t help that her father is a complete buffoon with finances, who financially destroyed his family and even stole money from my wife’s savings account when she was a child. He never paid it back. My wife has freely admitted that she has a problem regarding money, that she is overprotective of it and allows it to dominate her thinking and decision making processes. I have the exact opposite problem that I have no trouble spending any amount so long as my addiction is served. I had gotten in some minor trouble with the credit card this time, which she confronted me about last night, and we had a pretty constructive conversation about it. She was very reassuring, very different from how I’ve described her here. I tried to tell her that I have a hard time opening up to her or dumping my stresses on her because she herself is often very stressed out. She agreed that at times she is, but that that was no excuse. Perhaps it wasn’t. There are opportunities to talk, and my problems are always the same, usually spaced about six months between incidents. Make no mistake about it, I am or at least can be a complete asshole. On the other hand, my wife fluctuates between the most supportive person I’ve ever met and one of the coldest, hardest to talk to. She wouldn’t believe me if I told her that and would doubtless cite chapter and verse from the book of “I Know You Are But What Am I?” She will convince me that I’m mistaken and I’ll totally believe it, because right now, I’m the big glaring problem in our relationship. Then time will pass, I’ll be on a good streak and the ice woman will emerge from her crysallis once again. And that’s when it hurts the most, because I’m convinced once again that I am the sum total of everything that is wrong with our relationship. We’ll see how this all turns out. On the nice side of things, I have the day off and we’re heading to Olive Garden (not my first choice, but we have a gift card) for dinner. So should be nice. And all the bad stuff is out in the open.

Many happy returns to you all, and thank you again for the the thoughtful response. Your story hits the nail on the head. Question is, is that martyr complex or something else?

B.Byrner


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 Post subject: Re: Scorn Flakes
PostPosted: Sat Oct 28, 2017 6:27 am 
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I've often wondered if my dad wants sympathy or maybe he wants others to 'see how much he does'. I love him very much and we do have a good relationship so I'm not trying to make him out to be a butthead or anything like that lol. I wish he'd let us help him more and my fiancé is really close with my dad, actually probably closer to him than myself, and offers to do everything for him. He just seems to want to complain about doing everything but when someone steps in to help, he'll quickly get it done. Maybe it's pride or maybe he thinks he can only do it the way it needs to be done.... I don't know, I haven't figured him out yet. I don't know what you'd label that :)

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 Post subject: Re: Scorn Flakes
PostPosted: Sun Oct 29, 2017 2:44 am 
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Sometimes people just get so accustomed to complaining about things, or a particular thing that they’ll go out of their way to preserve the justification. I complain about my job a lot. Easy answer is to find another job, but I won’t do it for, well, a lot of reasons, but one of them is that by staying I’m preserving my own righteous cause. I’m letting an evil—or an evil as I see it—happen to me with the failing hope that the one causing it will see it and come to their senses. They won’t. Jobs are, by and large, just a conduit for cash. No business is going to bend over backwards to address the piddling moral concerns of a single employee. Rather, they’ll shitcan that person and bring in someone who will do it for less and thank them for it. Because as often as there’s someone out there, hoisting themselves up by their own petard of principle, there are half a hundred others who’d crawl on hands and knees through an acre of wet dog shit for half the pay. Boy, that got real specific real quick.

My wife is hurting right now, really from what she’s calling another betrayal. I’m afraid to spend money, but I do spend a lot (secretly) and when it comes out that I’ve been using the credit card for this or that, we arrive back at the starting line of trust. Unfortunately, it’s looking like there might not be a bullet in the starting pistol this round. Perhaps. Perhaps not. But I’m dealing with the idea of divorce at a very real level. Neither of us has really used that word, divorce, but she has more than tip toed around it. She doesn’t like the person that this is making her become. And I’m realizing that the monster I’ve come here to describe is really very much my own creation. You can’t say “addiction” without saying “dick” in there somewhere, and addiction makes dicks of us all.

I’d love another chance, but it’s not my place to ask. I don’t want to hurt her anymore. More, I don’t want to spoil my son’s shot at having a mommy and daddy who love each other and have unshakeable trust. At this point, even a complete about face is not going to be without some manner of unpleasant flashback in the future. If I’m on the straight and narrow and something comes up, then it will be my place to be hurt and angry from the undue suspicion.

I’m starting things up with my psychiatrist again. Hopefully for the best. I’ve been resistant to mood meds, but anxiety fuels my addiction like nothing else.

Thank you once again! Hoping all is well with you and yours!


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Fond Du Lac Psychiatry
Dr. Jeffrey Junig, M.D., Ph.D.

  • Board Certified Psychiatrist
  • Asst Clinical Professor, Medical College of Wisconsin

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