A Personal Story – My Alcoholic Ex Husband
My alcoholic ex-husband called last night and said he was dying.
Five years ago this would have been upsetting news. But now I just recognize it for what it really is: a cry for help (he is not really dying) from an alcoholic husband. I asked him what I could do and he asked me to “just listen.”
He began to sob like a child. Over the last 10 years he lost multiple jobs, a wife, a long-time live-in girlfriend, two sets of children, and is about to have his electricity turned off because he can’t pay the bills. He lives amongst filthiness and dysfunction. And even his family refuses to talk to him – too many bridges have been burned. He is only 38 years old.
“I am all alone, Michelle”.
I did not try to fix him, or condemn him. There were no words. I just listened.
“I don’t want to go on living. My whole life I have been fighting this and I am tired. I hate being sober because I have to face so many things, but I hate myself when I drink.”
It must be an awful life. Constantly running away from all the people you have hurt and the pain you feel. He really needs to hear the forgiveness and mercy that God is so ready to grant him, if he would just surrender.
But unfortunately, the bottom of his rock bottom is very, very deep.
I told him I would pray for him. Gave him some updates on the kids and compassionately said goodbye. It was sad, and it broke my heart a little to hear a man so wounded by his own choices. My husband walked into the room and asked if everything was ok.
We climbed into bed together and prayed for him.
That was my old life. Drama. Pain. Suffering. Loneliness.
Powerful words that only someone who loves an alcoholic or addict can understand. I thank God that all it now takes to leave that dysfunctional world behind is hanging up the phone.
My life now is filled with love, laughter and joy. My children are safe and I am married to a honest man who cherishes us, comes home on time, and is filled with integrity. I know I would never to be able to appreciate my life today had it not been so awful for so long.
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