Cleaning up the wreckage..... Journals

Cleaning up the wreckage.......

Apr 22, 2014 - 13 comments

My husband has been clean from methadone, Xanax and alcohol for four years on February 25, 2014.
For this I am eternally grateful.

His relapse lasted 14 horrible and dreadful years. These are years we will never get back.
Years that my children didn't have their father. I didn't have my husband.
Years that our marriage, relationships within our immediate family were breaking down and not getting nurtured.
Things happened that can never get taken away. Things that are forever written and stamped upon
mine and my children's hearts, minds, souls and spirits.
Things got lost along the way. Love, companionship, trust, plans for the future, finances, shattered dreams , friendship, our marriage.
Words that were  spoken. Hateful, angry, hurtful, sad, resentful, words.
Words that weren't spoken, I love you, I support you, I trust you, I need you, let me help you, I am sorry.

You know how it goes. In the beginning, he only used a little. He hid it pretty well until the last 5 or 6 years.
Then it progressed to full blown, nodding in his soup addiction. He always worked, very high functioning. Our business started to suffer. He wouldn't finish jobs on time. I wouldn't see the money from the jobs.
Well over the $200,000 through the years.
This is money we don't have saved for college tuitions, savings accounts.
We basically live week to week at 57 and 60 years old.
We sold our larger home that we owned for 15 years when we separated in 2009.
We couldn't get a new mortgage when he got out of rehab in 2010 because our credit was horrible.
We live in a beautiful shore town, but a much smaller home that needs work.

I was substitute teaching for the last 7 years. My daughter called the police on me in August 2012.
I tried to stop her from leaving so she could go get high. I was arrested and charged with aggravated
assault. The officer said I poked his chest and assaulted him by saying he didn't care about my family.
So as a result of that I can no longer substitute teach.

I many times feel bad about myself. That I have no career. I don't contribute to the household finances at
this point. I feel no self- worth. I think some of it comes from my husband yelling at me, bad mouthing,
belittling me during his active addiction. At 57 I don't think I have the energy, finances or motivation to go back to school.

During those years of his active addiction I stayed, praying, hoping, believing that he would stop.
The word divorce didn't come up very often.
I begged, pleaded, cried for him to get help.
I kept the faith.
I didn't want my children to come from a broken home.
The reality is, our home was very broken.
Lots of fighting, anger, dysfunction.

When we married, we agreed I would stay home, take care of the home and the children.
Take care of the paperwork for our electrical contracting business.
We went on the have three children. I had a son from a previous marriage and was widowed at 29.
(That's a story for another time.)

I have a college degree. A Bachelors of Arts in Dance. I had always taught. I was also an Aquatics Director.
I was certified through the American Red Cross to teach swimming, lifeguard training, first aid, CPR.
I did this for 25 years starting at the age of 17 til I was 42..
So I had worked part time in our marriage for the first 8 years.
When his relapse happened I no longer would leave the children with him.
So I let my certifications lapse.

Now what is left is the destruction and wreckage that was created during his active addiction.

I believe at this point that I have forgiven. I am not bitter, resentful, angry, sad, hurt, on a continually daily
basis. It just pops up sometimes, like I relapse.
My family has been healing and being restored.

I mourn what we don't have. A close marriage, him as my best friend.
A productive, healthy life and marriage or ministry.
He was called into ministry when he first got clean from heroin at 30 years old.
He went to bible college, became a licensed minister.
He then went on to become the director of a Christian men's drug and alcohol program.
This is where he was when we met at church.
He then started working full time in our business when we married.
The ministry couldn't support us at the time.

When I told him yesterday I was thinking of getting a divorce, he was very cavalier about it.
Almost pressuring to make a decision right then. He said I haven't forgiven him and am living in the past.
I don't think that I am. I want my feelings to be validated. He said he acknowledges that his addiction did do
all the things I said, but we can't go back.

I didn't look for or find medhelp until he went into rehab in January 2010. If I had known what I know now.
I don't believe I would have let it go on for so long. I wouldn't have enabled him.
I wouldn't have fought with him.
I would have left because he didn't until the very end.
I kept his dirty little secret and sin within our camp.
I didn't expose it to family and friends.
I was ashamed and embarrassed.

I was diagnosed with fibromyalgia back in November. Maybe much of my sadness is coming from that.
I was on lyrica for 5 months. It made me gain weight. I didn't think it was helping me.
I tapered off and stopped taking it 10 days ago.
I feel achy, tired and sad again.
I guess the lyrica was working. The rheumatologist wants me to take Cymbalta now.
I am going to try homeopathic first I think.

I can't provide for my myself and my children. He isn't making enough money to support us separately.
I will pray. I am trying to determine what I can do that is meaningful and to also make some money doing it.
I feel I would be a great counselor, but the schooling and then the internship would take too long.
To get my teaching certificate would take one year of intensive schooling and $40,000, so that is out.
I don't want to take my children and live with my mom.

Thank you for all of your support on my status. It really did help me. Please continue to pray for me.
I need to find a solution to my fibro, my sadness, the baggage and regrets from our past life.
I am keeping the faith.
I will continue to move forward.
I will go for counseling.
I will continue to be part of medhelp. I love you and I am very grateful for the support and love I receive.
Those that have reached out to me are the ones I can count on, Thank you.

Much love,

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by nursegirl6572, Apr 22, 2014
My thoughts are with you Debbie.  You are such an amazing woman, with the kindest heart.  I hate that you're hurting, and I hope that as you reflect and pray on it, you'll decide what's best for YOU.  You've spent your ENTIRE life giving your ALL to others, now it's time to put YOU first, okay?  You deserve it!  


Avatar universal
by weaver71, Apr 22, 2014
I really like dAte night and my new found love, vacation. I don't know how he shows he is sorry and how you show you forgive him, but setting aside time weekly to be together and no kids or distractions has helped all of my family. I'll keep praying for you.

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by ariley13, Apr 22, 2014
This sounds like a complex situation. What you are feeling is perfectly normal and ok. Your feelings need to be validated. We all need and deserve that. It sounds like he is trying very hard to work on himself and in the process maybe neglecting you and the marriage in a way? This has to be very hard on everyone concerned. I'm sure that he feels tremendous guilt at times over his 14 year relapse and the consequences you all are still facing to this day. I hope that you find what YOU need and what is ultimately going to make YOU happy. Maybe some counseling would help you to process all of your feelings and all of the confusion. I will keep you and your family in my prayers. I hope that you find some much needed clarity and peace.

Avatar universal
by Dane74, Apr 22, 2014
Hi sweet Debbie, my heart aches reading this it truly does.  You are the most giving caring loving human being i have ever met.  You have been through the ringer thats for sure, but my dear you are blessed in so many ways.  Lean onto to your faith, don't turn away, and ask for guidance.  I will for sure be praying for you.  Your babies are all good and hubby is clean, so now is the time to focus all your energy on yourself, be selfish for once in your life and put all the effort into your happiness.  Living in the past gets us nowhere, live for today and the future, yes there was allot of damage done, you forgave, but not forgotten, and he needs to validate those feeling in order for you to move forward.  It looks like y'all need some outside professional help, may i suggest counseling?  I love you my sweet angel and hate to see you suffering.

Abundant blessings,
love you,Dana

Avatar universal
by JD1963, Apr 22, 2014
Dear Debbie!

I can not comprehend the Love that I have read here tonight! Reading your post brought me to tears, but the repondences have made me leave and go for a walk!

I only wish you the very best outcome! I realize I am out of my league Psychologically , but I still have feelings (thanks Grandma)!

I don't know what else to say! I will need some sort of sleep aid tonight!

Please keep in contact if you wish, I am normally in the Orthopedic Community, but I see I should watch other communities as well.


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by jugglin, Apr 22, 2014
Hi sweet lady!  I can't even begin to imagine the struggles you have been thru all of these years and the struggles you are dealing with at this moment.  Please be kind to yourself and put your needs first and foremost.  
I am sending prayers to you for comfort, peace, strength, courage and wisdom.
God Bless!

Avatar universal
by msdelight, Apr 22, 2014
Sweetheart you sound so lost and broken. My heart and my prayers go out to you. I have found that making decisions when I feel sad is never a good idea. Take a little time out. Work on you. Have you considered tutoring students in your home? It could provide a sense of worth and meaning and some much needed cash. I would stay put for now, 4 kids is a huge responsibility to bear alone.
Pray for guidance and trust in Gods plan for you. Surrender it and don't mourn this relationship anymore. It is what it is and we need to blossom where we are. You're in my thoughts tonight.

Avatar universal
by Sacrifice1, Apr 22, 2014
I am new here on medhelp, but I hear you.  These drugs kill our relationships in so many ways.  They take two souls and break them apart, bit by bit.  I wish that I had some healing thing that I could say to you, but I don't.  It looks like there are a lot of people here than care about you and even though I don't know you, I really feel your pain and pray that you find your way thru this situation and come out happy on the other side.  

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by meegWpaw, Apr 22, 2014
Dear Debbie,

I am sorry to hear you in such pain.  I have missed you and I am sorry if I let our communication lapse.  I did not know you were going to taper off Lyrica, and I have heard a lot of mixed things about Cymbalta, not wild about what I've heard.  I think homeopathy sounds great!  I do think the fibro may be contributing to your overall mood and feelings.

I know you have expressed before to me your feelings about career/lack of, feelings of low self-worth, etc.  Debbie you have raised a beautiful and shining family!  You have done all of the work involved in that, which is HUGE!  Wow how can you denigrate that, honey?  You are an amazing person.  You are an incredible mother, caretaker, advisor, counselor, friend, wife and more to your family, your friends, those here on medhelp and others, even strangers, and to me.  You are unflagging in your devotion to the ministry/church and to God.   You help the poor, sick and needy get back on their feet ... literally!

I don't want to advise you what to do unless you seek me to privately, but I do exhort you to do exactly what is best for you, Debbie.  This is your time, honey, as you have said to me.  You deserve it.  You have worked so hard your whole life.  

Don't do anything rash, that is all I will say.  Consider all the possibilities and think it through.

I love you!!!


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by kellygirll, Apr 23, 2014
now i don't know you that well or at all for that matter i just read you journal and you sound like one really awesome person to put up with and go thru what you did for 14 years is just so selfless you put your family before you and made sure they were all ok with giving no regard to your needs that takes a special kind of person and you are that person it may be time to take time for you and take care of your self i know you can treat your fibro thru diet just google it i know gluten sometimes often plays a big part in managing it and seeking conceling like you said is a great idea you are a real gem but its time to take care of you you SOOOOO deserve it lady!!!  best of luck to you you deserve only the best!! <3

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by Gettingalifeagain, Apr 23, 2014
Dear Debbie, I am new here too, and I don't know you for very long, but your journal stirred up so many emotions in me, thank you for sharing.  Sometimes I think I am the only one with struggles, and for me, I go down the self pity road until I get into trouble with trying to escape my self pity with drugs and alcohol.  I don't do that anymore.  I feel your pain, our stories are somewhat smiliar, right down to the electrical business.  I couldn't get my husband out of bed to go to a job, and have to call and cancel....alanon helped me there.  For me, if I lift the garbage can lid of my past and stare too long, I will get sick again.  And, the thought of years ahead (i am 50 and single) scares me.  So, I only have right now....praying for you.

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by atthebeach, Apr 24, 2014
Thank you everyone for your words of encouragement and love. It helps me to put things into perceptive. It gets me out of my own  Head.
sometimes things are great. Then I regress, back to my negative thoughts. I need to step up my recovery process. The weather also has been bad this winter. Still waiting for the warm weather to get and stay here
We did go on vacation for 10 days and it was a beautiful time with my whole family.
I felt blessed. Then a couple day later, bam. I really think coming off the lyrica was the trigger.
I don't want to be on it. I go to the gym a few days a week. Hard to tell if the soreness is from
Working out or the fibro. Maybe I need to try swimming in a warm pool.

I am not going to get divorced. I have no where to go. I do love my husband. We have been married
For 24 years that counts for something.
I am happy that my husband, daughter and oldest son are all clean from their drug of choice.
That alone is enough to be thankful and grateful for.
Thanks again for your support and prayers,
Much love,

Avatar universal
by Yesidid, Apr 26, 2014
You have saved lives here and elsewhere. Your presence on this earth has been a blessing to me and to many others. You have become the gem we know and love largely because of the struggles you've faced. Don't dismiss your suspicions about the effects of quitting Lyrica. Yes, of course your feelings and concerns are valid but the gaba imbalance that darn Lyrica could be causing can definitely make these days a lot gloomier than normal.

All My Love.

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