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No More Rug Sweeping

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IHatePickingName posted 1/22/2020 11:36 AM

Neanderthal, there is one thing that i have said privately to someone else here, but think you may need to hear too: at least for myself, i will not be hurt or let down if you screw up here, or even if you blow your top, curse us all, run out and bang the first person who passes before drinking yourself into a coma. I do feel "invested" in your stories because of the parallels i see to my own timeline, but you are also a stranger on the internet.

It is easy to get too invested in someone else online. Hell, i know that really well since i never met and AP's IRL. It was all online. But part of my work is to respect appropriate boundaries which includes getting too invested.

I wont extend that to anyone else, but please dont worry about letting me down. If you two reconcile, i will cheer for you. If you divorce but you both become better, and safer people, i will be happy for both of you.p But i also wont be hurt if either of you never get anywhere close. The people who will be hurt are far closer to you. Dont worry about the precious feelings of strangers online. We can back off if we need to.

sisoon posted 1/22/2020 13:06 PM

I'm concerned about your alcoholism, but I've never had a close relationship with an alcoholic, so I could be off base.

It looks like you've stopped going to meetings. Is that so? How come?

I ask because my sense is that 'I hate myself' is part of the motivation for drinking. And for cheating. I would think meetings can help you stay focused on achieving your goals.

Also, learning to love yourself is not 'one and done.' Self-love is under constant attack, so it needs constant renewal. External validation, like from other people who are struggling at the same time you struggle, can help confirm your self-love, if it is already in you.

You're in the process of deciding between R & D. Talking in front of a group like AA can help you decide. They'll listen while you work something out. When you gain an insight from the someone else in the group, you can speak the insight, and that helps confirm it.

So ... if you're not still attending, what's keeping you from doing so?

*****

Not so by the way: you're taking responsibility for your actions, and you seem to be telling the truth.

Those are 2 actions that form the core of R.

And you're doing them.

So don't think you can't R.

*****

Finally for now, how can you choose R if you hate yourself? If you think you're a total shit, how can you possibly offer yourself up as a partner?

And if there's only one choice that you see, you aren't really giving yourself a choice.

The truth is that you're very far from being a total shit. You're imperfect, but so is everybody else.

My reco for now is not to make a decision until and unless you can see yourself leading a good life both if you R and if you D.

Don't decide until you know you can do the work necessary to both R & D.

There's no need to force yourself to move either way.

[This message edited by sisoon at 1:09 PM, January 22nd (Wednesday)]

LifeDestroyer posted 1/22/2020 14:13 PM

I am N's wife, and I would like to comment about his sobriety.

When he realized that he did have a problem with alcohol, he immediately stopped. He attended AA meetings. He received his one year chip. He never touched alcohol the whole time. I stopped with him because I didn't think it was fair, even though he told me over and over again that it was ok. At around the 2ish year mark, I started to drink again. I was cautious because I didn't want to add that temptation to him. He was strong though and never had a sip.

It wasn't until D-Day that he drank again. That one night. He has not touched it again. Yes, I'm not home to actually see it, but I can say without a doubt that he has been sober. He has had plenty of opportunities these past six months to drink, and he hasn't taken a single one.

He knew he had a problem and wanted to change, not for just himself but for our daughter as well.

He did.

[This message edited by LifeDestroyer at 2:17 PM, January 22nd (Wednesday)]

LifeDestroyer posted 1/22/2020 14:27 PM

Before I get the "you're just enabling him" thoughts and comments, I'm not. Did I enable him through the years with his drinking? Absolutely. I enjoyed drinking with him. We had fun. Once he stopped, I never asked him to drink with me. I never told him "just one sip will be fine." I will be honest, I did think that though. I thought "he's strong enough to have one sip and not drink again," but I still didn't want to risk it.

I am very proud of my husband for being able to stop and not start again through all of this. That is not an easy thing to do.

Hippo16 posted 1/22/2020 19:29 PM

Neanderthal

just a thought

Reading SI is a bit like mining for something useful like, say, Aluminum.

To find the ore with the Al, the miner has to remove overburden or dig holes through the ground.

So it is here, there is a lot of stuff worth "mining" and whether gasoline or support - sift for the stuff to help learn.

My personal take on SI is it is a place with a philosophy to recover what was lost bye the unfaithful soul(s).

If you read here enough (years maybe?) you will see the patterns of those that will recover and those that will continue to flounder and/or eventually fail to recover their union.

Seems to me you are starting to move (recover) in the right direction.

All here know it isn't easy - time is your friend.
And continuing study to sort your memories and make peace with your history.

YMMV

Neanderthal posted 1/22/2020 22:31 PM

Sisoon,
I had stopped attending. Why? I thought about this question for a long time. I don't really know. Maybe I didn't want to fully commit to something(12steps). Or maybe I thought I beat it. I had learned better coping skills, and rarely thought about drinking, even when things were hard. Or maybe it just all seemed like too much. My life is up in flames, marriage is destroyed, I can barely get out of bed, and now I gotta go work on my addiction too?! It's all overwhelming.

I went to a meeting today, and I am glad I did. The discussion was very relevant to my current life problems. I also invited LD and she came with me. I always wanted her to go with me years ago, but I never asked. So I asked today, she went and observed.

Whenever I leave a meeting, I usually feel better and intend to continue going. The same holds true now.

Someone save this date! I heard what a Guide had to say and listened!

Neanderthal posted 1/27/2020 12:02 PM

Reposting from my Original thread. I feel it belongs here.

Rules....I struggle with them. Laws, ethics, guidelines, etc.
I learned or believed at a young age that rules were not necessarily in place for me to follow. I believed/believe rules are in place to protect dumbasses. Some people just aren't wired in a way to see inherent danger so without rules, they will literally walk off a cliff just because a fence or sign wasn't there to tell them not too.
I can give another example. If a busy 4 way intersection didn't have stop signs, would you stop before crossing? Or at least slow down? I know I would and so would most people. But a few dumbasses will continue at a high rate of speed just because nothing told them to stop. Therefore a law is created to protect the few dumbasses. Which makes us all suffer. SO what do I do at stop signs? I slow down, check for danger and proceed (rolling Stop). So I broke the law.

Unfortunately I have that same mindset to most rules, expectations or whatever. I challenge the company policies at work. I look for grey areas to save money. Essentially life is all about me. Everything revolves around me. Why should I be affected by a stop sign to save another dumbasses life? I am very selfish. I don't see the big picture. Maybe the dumbass that runs the stop sign hits a mini van full of kids. Now innocent law abiding people are hurt.

All of this is to say I need to stop justifying my actions by saying "See! No one got hurt!" I did that with my marriage. I took my vows for granted. I allowed resentment, anger, depression, alcohol to excuse my actions. To bend the rules. Swinging is a prime example of that. I knew the swinging lifestyle as a whole doesn't and can't work for most people. It's just not a very good idea. But I convinced myself regardless of the warnings, that we are good. It wont hurt us. 8-9 years later, I'd think we would all agree, It seriously hurt my wife and I.

Do as I say, not as I do. That's me! I was dead set against cheating. I always told my wife, just divorce me, don't cheat. Somehow I excused my own integrity, guidelines and rules.

Breaking or bending the rules has come so naturally to me. So much so that I didn't even notice I was doing anything wrong anymore. I didn't live a life of integrity. I want to now. Retraining my brain that something I would normally do, is now wrong....that's hard!

I can give two recent examples.
I heard on bookface of an online deal for something I wanted. The deal was obviously a mistake. Something that costs $400 was mistakenly marked to $89. I immediately ordered it, and thought to myself Gotcha! You screwed up, now I am going to benefit from it. This website that sells this item isn't walmart or amazon. Its a small employee owned company and thanks to bookface hundreds of these items were ordered. Likely crippling that small company had the orders been filled.

Something in me has started to change. I almost immediately felt regret and that pissed me off! They screwed up, not me! Why am I sad? Its because I realized what I did was wrong. Before the company canceled the orders or offered something else to placate us asshole customers, I emailed them and canceled my order. I didn't want to be part of something that might make someone lose there job.

Another example. I was at a live show with my daughter. It was based on a very popular Disney movie. There was a photo area set up for the kids to get there picture taken with some props. It cost $25! We walked away and I told my little one it was too expensive. Later on, we walked by it again and the only person there was the worker. I politely asked if my daughter could jump in really fast while I snap a picture with my phone. She said sure, but it costs $25. Before I knew it my daughter was in there with the props. I grabbed my phone and snapped one picture. The worker said "Hey you cant do that!" and I said you shouldn't charge $25 either and my daughter and I walked away. Later on I looked at that photo of my innocent daughter and felt disgust in myself. I have sense deleted it.

What on earth gave me the idea that my actions in both of those scenarios was ok? So far I am catching myself after doing the bad thing and trying to correct it. Hopefully soon I just wont do the bad thing at all!

I'm not above the law, rules, or guidelines. I want to show my daughter how to live a life with values and integrity. I need to stop looking for grey areas to excuse my behavior.

RocketRaccoon posted 1/27/2020 22:15 PM

Hey N,

On your posting about breaking of Rules. Had started typing up a response to your first posting about the rules issue, but it was too harsh, so let it go.

Glad that I held back, as it seems that you have realised that breaking rules for the sake of breaking rules is not a good thing. Being a rebel without a cause shows a lack of awareness for the implications it could have.

Your latest response shows that you are gaining awareness of the implications, and that is a good thing.

You are on the right path to be a better man. Bravo!

66charger posted 1/27/2020 23:39 PM

The reason that photo cost $25 is because that young lady you bullied has to get paid after sitting there for countless hours encountering assholes who do not understand that she does not own that stand. She is probably a college student trying to earn a little change for the weekend....like my daughter.

Deleting the picture is meaningless. You stole from her. If you had any decency you would put down the cheerios, chicken and doughnuts, take your daughter down to this young lady, apologize in front of your daughter and give her the $25 you stole.

I cant imagine what i would do if some idiot tried to bully my daughter for doing her job.

And before you write a damn word, picture your daughter 15 years from now, working a below minimum wage job and approached that way. What would you do?. We all know that answer.

Edited for civility..brother.

(Yes I am projecting as a Dad)

[This message edited by 66charger at 11:46 PM, January 27th (Monday)]

RocketRaccoon posted 1/28/2020 00:02 AM

@66charger (nice looking car BTW),

I do believe that Neanderthal knows what he did was wrong, and he seems to have come to his senses (hopefully it sticks).

Am not defending his previous behaviour in any way, but I do applaude him for his self-realization of how self-centred he was. The first action of 'breaking the rule' of not taking the picture (unless $25 was paid) is reprehensible in that it could have gotten the attendant into trouble.

The repentance for the act (deleting the picture) shows some inkling of knowing what is right from wrong.


Neanderthal,

We all have pasts, and we all have made errors (of varying degrees) in judgement in our pasts. What a person does with that knowledge will determine their future behaviour.

You seem to have woken up to how destructive your decisions were, so what will you do to stop making them again?

I kinda agree with '66 on the apology to the attendant, as it will help with your healing. The ability to empathize and know what you did was wrong. Do you bring your daughter? Well, that will depend on you. It could serve as a lesson on honesty to her....

Neanderthal posted 1/28/2020 06:03 AM

First thanks for responding to me. When I first read your post 66charger, I planned to try and defend myself. I read it again, and realized something else pretty fucked up.

Even after knowing I did wrong, Even after typing it out here. I never once thought of the girl that worked there. I was going to say my actions were not bullying, but I did bully her. Here I am weeks later and I still hadn't given her a thought.

The minimum wage she was making isn't worth dealing with assholes like me. I only saw the corporation taking my money, not the girl in the firing line.

What do I do if apologizing to her in't an option? The show was at an arena 3 hours away. The show travels all over the country and won't be coming back. She probably works at the arena, but I have no idea what her name is, what she looks like, nothing.

Zugzwang posted 1/28/2020 06:47 AM

Now, others may disagree with me here, and again, this is meant with love, not to hurt. However, when I read the words, "I cheated because I chose to", all I hear is someone who is unwilling to do the work, and choosing to avoid the reality of who they are. In the same way that a person who doesn't love themselves can't show love to others, a person who does not know who they and why, is doomed to be defined by others, and in so doing, will be incapable of loving themselves. How can you possibly love someone you don't even know? How can someone else love you if they can't know you?

DaddyDomI agree.


We need to heal and dig as to why we wanted to. Why we were selfish. What is the problem and issue. Anything short of that is white-knuckling. It is just an insert next addiction treatment. I have seen many come here and just say. I was selfish and I will not act that way or cheat again. Never works. They come back later. Like he has. Realizing they have been trading one addiction for another because they want to not dig deeper and accept and own so much stuff they are continously running from or rugsweeping. Don't confuse FOO issues as excuses. Any longtimer that has done the work and owned it, knows it isn't and that it is really important. Ultimately no matter what we are taught it is up to us to choose to incorporate that into our character or not.

Lostgirl410 posted 1/28/2020 06:47 AM

What do I do if apologizing to her in't an option? The show was at an arena 3 hours away. The show travels all over the country and won't be coming back. She probably works at the arena, but I have no idea what her name is, what she looks like, nothing.

You could start with a phone call to the arena. Ask questions, and explain you would like to do right by the girl. I'm sure they keep records of their employees, and she probably punches a time clock. If nothing else, you could send a card with an apology, $25, and involve your daughter in that process.

Zugzwang posted 1/28/2020 06:47 AM

Now, others may disagree with me here, and again, this is meant with love, not to hurt. However, when I read the words, "I cheated because I chose to", all I hear is someone who is unwilling to do the work, and choosing to avoid the reality of who they are. In the same way that a person who doesn't love themselves can't show love to others, a person who does not know who they and why, is doomed to be defined by others, and in so doing, will be incapable of loving themselves. How can you possibly love someone you don't even know? How can someone else love you if they can't know you?

DaddyDomI agree.


We need to heal and dig as to why we wanted to. Why we were selfish. What is the problem and issue. Anything short of that is white-knuckling. It is just an insert next addiction treatment. I have seen many come here and just say. I was selfish and I will not act that way or cheat again. Never works. They come back later. Like he has. Realizing they have been trading one addiction for another because they want to not dig deeper and accept and own so much stuff they are continuously running from or rugsweeping. Don't confuse FOO issues as excuses. Any longtimer that has done the work and owned it, knows it isn't and that it is really important. Ultimately no matter what we are taught it is up to us to choose to incorporate that into our character or not.

Neanderthal posted 1/28/2020 07:43 AM

You could start with a phone call to the arena.
This is a good start. Thank you for the suggestion.
We need to heal and dig as to why we wanted to. Why we were selfish. What is the problem and issue. Anything short of that is white-knuckling.
I don't want to white knuckle. I guess the BS part of me sees excuses. The WS part of me sees things in me that need repair. I have a list of FOO issues to work on. I don't want to run or rug sweep any longer.

Ultimately no matter what we are taught it is up to us to choose to incorporate that into our character or not.
This is more how I feel regarding whys. I may have had many issues growing up, but why did I allow them to dictate bad behavior? Why didn't I learn from watching others do wrong?


66charger posted 1/28/2020 10:24 AM

Dads and Daughters.

Your daughter will quickly underatand that if she ask you to stop doing what you are doing. Drive 30 miles to get her a smoothie and bring it to her at school you will do it.

And based on your post, if you witnessed someone disrespecting your daughter in such a way, they would probably have a problem breathing air.

The bigger issue is that you did this in front of her. You taught her that this was okay. The course correction has less to do with the street vendor and more to do with what she thinks is cool.

Talk to her but take an action. The next time you have the opportunity, take the picture and have your daughter give the vendor the money.

It surprises me that my daughter remembers things i told her decades ago. Some good and some were cringeworthy. Even though you will make many mistakes your name will always be DAD. Her imperfect hero.

BTW. BTDT with the late night eating. Try jello mixed with fruit, nuts and light Cool Whip. It taste really good without the calories and fat.

hikingout posted 1/28/2020 10:32 AM

Now, others may disagree with me here, and again, this is meant with love, not to hurt. However, when I read the words, "I cheated because I chose to", all I hear is someone who is unwilling to do the work, and choosing to avoid the reality of who they are. In the same way that a person who doesn't love themselves can't show love to others, a person who does not know who they and why, is doomed to be defined by others, and in so doing, will be incapable of loving themselves. How can you possibly love someone you don't even know? How can someone else love you if they can't know you?

I always start posts on my whys with of course we wanted to. I do it for two reasons, one, to make sure that I am acknowledging that my decisions were my own that nothing made me to it. And Two, because it's true, we all did want to do it.

The whys to me are "Why did you want to do it". That's a different question. That's when you get to explaining a thing rather than excusing a thing.

It also puts away the common argument here that I see as to why A BS feels FOO, crisis and other things are excuses. They aren't excuses, they are an explanation of how we came to want to make such destructive decisions.

I just thought I would say that, because I definitely agree with you Daddydom, you have to do the digging to figure out how you became the person you are. And, in that process, you also have to find both self compassion and the will to change. But, by stating it up front, it takes the ability to argue with what comes next. It's a powerful admission of accountability rather than a cop out in that scenario.

66charger posted 1/28/2020 10:33 AM

And yes i did deliver those special lunches..several times. She always had a group of her freinds there when the delivery came. Showing off her dad to her freinds.

You have a lonnnng road ahead of you brother

Neanderthal posted 1/28/2020 12:03 PM

The bigger issue is that you did this in front of her. You taught her that this was okay.
I need to correct this. I'll figure out a way. Maybe that means she gets to go to another event. All these kids shows have something similar. Explaining my error and showing the right way to do things....Leading by example.

I don't want my daughter to turn out like me. I want her to live a happy fulfilled life. I want her to have the required tools to handle adversity but to do it with grace.

you have to do the digging to figure out how you became the person you are.
Control was and is still an issue for me. As a child I felt completely out of control. All sorts of bad things were happening to me and around me, and there was nothing I could do about it. I shouldn't have to be in control as a child. My parents and family should do the right things and protect me. I can remember as soon as I could, everything was on me. If I wasn't in control it wasn't going to happen.
Do you want to eat? Go take your moms food stamps, get groceries and cook.
Do you need basketball shoes so you can play on the school team? Raid the local YMCA's lost and found and take a pair that's 3 sizes too big. No one else wanted them, what's the harm in taking them?
Want to join the Navy but your custodial sister wont allow you to join? Wait till your 18 and join the military in spite of her.

These are just a few examples. Daily life from as early as 8 was all on me. I was home alone for a week straight at 8 or 9. I got up in the morning, and went to school. Then Id come home and start the fire in the wood burning stove, and cook soup or rice. Somedays school lunch was all I had. Fast forward a few years, i'm 11-12. My mom has MS and tried to commit suicide multiple times. My fathers abuse and infidelity were the cause, not her debilitating disease. Mom gets shoved into a nursing home at the age of 51. She's more than capable of living a life on her own, but that's not what my father wanted. She needed to disappear and die there. Guess where I lived for weeks at a time while he was out fucking anything that walked? In a nursing home with my mom. The nurses were nice enough to get me a cot and feed me.

This is what I really struggle with. My childhood really sucked, yeah so what? Lots of people have them, why did I do fucking horrible things as an adult?

Before the swinging started I was miserable. As unhappy as I can remember. Just left the Navy for civilian life. We moved to Oklahoma just to have a job. I didn't know where OK was on the map, let alone if I wanted to live there. We went from a 3 bedroom house in Virginia to a tiny 1 bedroom apartment. I knew no one but my wife. I hated my Job. I was terrible at my job. No navy chief to set me straight. first time living with and seeing LD on a daily basis. the honeymoon was looong gone. I was back to making sure everything got done again. I had to control the outcome and I was failing miserably. This is when the drinking really got bad. We practically lived in a bar across the street from our tiny apartment. I was drunk constantly.

When I say I had to get everything done, I mean big picture stuff. Get a job, keep a job, etc. LD did a great job juggling her career and keeping a clean home. The stress and pressure was all self induced. She didn't do anything wrong.

But I resented her.....
For lots of things but none of them should have mattered. I see that now, but back then I was just angry. She was my scapegoat. I could list the resentments but what's the point? They were all trivial.

She was my one and only at the time. I was miserable and there was no way I was going to blame myself. So if I was unhappy, it must be LD's fault. I liked sex. We liked sex. Hell we experimented a lot! None of it seemed to matter. I wanted more. I wanted more partners like she had (silly resentment). I was second guessing myself and our marriage. High school sweethearts, married at 20, we didn't know ourselves yet. How could we pick a spouse? So that must be what's wrong. Its not me, its her. So I pushed and pushed. But she just wouldn't go away! No matter how mad I was, she wouldn't let go.
Sorry for the word dump. There's a lot more. I'm not even sure what I'm doing sharing all of this.

hikingout posted 1/29/2020 07:59 AM

I think many of us WS held these silly resentments towards our spouses. We didn't take responsibility for our own happiness so they were our scapegoat. The admissions you are making are making a ton of sense.

And, in many ways, I think that will also help you understand Lifedestroyer more as well. We don't do things because of other people. Cheating is a statement about ourselves. So many BS carry these feelings "if I had done this or that, or I had been this or that". NO. The cheating occurs because the cheating party wasn't this or that. They didn't do the right things. But, it's often these hidden expectations that become disappointments, these internal struggles with ourselves and our own perceptions of our lives...that's what often makes a cheater. I say often because I think there are people out there that are just truly diabolical, but they probably fall under some mental health diagnosis.

These are good steps to start to understand yourself. Only once we have a clear picture of who we are and how we became that way, the way our thoughts and perceptions were distorted, can we really change. You can't change what you don't acknowledge. And, in many ways it takes that mysterious feeling of "I am just a bad person", and puts some humanity in there. Self compassion is also needed in order to change. If you continue to hate yourself, swim in shame, you will continue to radiate that pain and you can not heal.

I think you are starting to see some important things.

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