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"Alcoholic Behavior, Done Making Excuses "
by Toby Rice Drews
by Toby Rice Drews
This is an excerpt from the "Getting Them Sober, volume 4" book ----- "She came home and found him with a drinking-buddy woman in their bed. She "threw a fit" and threw them both out. She got another apartment, then, and moved most of the furniture into it.
"When she told her therapist about taking the furniture, she looked nervous and said, "Honest, I deserved it. I worked, too!" How many times do we feel we have to justify our acts of dignity?"
I excerpted this because we families of alcoholics so often don't even realize that we are feeling so bad about ourselves that we feel we have to justify taking even the tiniest action "against" the alcoholic after we've been so beaten down.
When the alcoholic is violent, we say, "he only pushed me".
When the alcoholic is violent, we say, "honest, he didn't have a reason to do that -- I was only being upset at his not showing up at our baby's Christening!"
AS IF HE HAS ANY RIGHT AT ALL TO BE SHOVING, PUSHING, HITTING, OR THREATENING ANY VIOLENCE IN ANY WAY, INCLUDING THE IMPLIED THREATS TO PERSONS ----- i.e., when he says that he'd "never hit you" but he threatens to "tear off the refrigerator door".
One then constantly lives with the fear of "when will he go beyond what he 'promised' and go after me or the children -- even though he says he never will?"
Sometimes, it helps to say what is going on to a person who has never lived with this junk.
It is wonderful and quite an eye-opener to see their expressions of shock when they hear us relate what the alcoholic did and how we responded----- and then hear us tell them that "we really did have the right to be upset!" The people who have never learned to adapt to abuse are understandably MORE shocked to hear us relate how we feel we need to justify having the right to get upset!
They cannot EVEN IMAGINE blaming themselves for ANY reaction they may have if someone was even HINTING AT being violent with them.
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