Support My Healing and Sobriety
I realize that I write many things that are difficult to read. So much of my world can be like that, but not all of it is. So today, I am trying something new. I am writing about my hubs. He is my primary support for my healing and sobriety.
It isn’t easy being on the support team for someone like me. I realize that. And since we moved away from the rest of our support group, my hubs is my only in-person support team. Which I think has been especially hard for him.
My hubs has watched me disassociate, sink into depression, struggle with anxiety, figure out how to navigate sobriety, etc. So for him, supporting and watching my journey is every day. And sometimes (maybe a lot of the time), feeling that he can’t do anything to help me.
But he does help me and is helping me—all the time. So I would like to thank him for supporting my healing and sobriety.
I was a high-functioning alcoholic, and no one was the wiser. I hid it really well. I would have died if I hadn’t gotten help. If you have even the slightest thought that you or someone you love is a high-functioning alcoholic, please encourage them to seek professional help.
I recommend Online-Therapy.* Encouraging therapy is their first step in healing.
Support My Sobriety
I decided never to drink again while my hubs was deployed. He found out by reading my blog because I was too chicken shit to tell him myself. It wasn’t telling him that I was afraid of. I was scared I would fail. I didn’t want to tell anyone if I didn’t achieve my goal of lifelong sobriety.
What made it especially hard to tell my hubs was that before I decided on the sober path, we talked about getting beers together when he got home. To me, that was a huge part of his homecoming, and I was going to ruin it by being sober. So that was how I saw it, and I worried about it a lot.
I needn’t have worried. My sobriety didn’t ruin anything when he got home. I wished I hadn’t been such a wuss and told him myself that I didn’t want to drink ever again. Some things are just easier for me to write, and that was one of them.
Support of My Introvert Nature
A big part of my journey is reconnecting with myself and realizing that I am an introvert’s introvert. I think they should put my picture in the dictionary under “introvert.” I enjoy being an introvert. I love it, actually.
But many of my friends, especially my hubs, did not know me as an introvert. They met me as the gregarious (read “drunk”) extrovert who knew everyone, and everyone knew me. I was that person because that is the type of person I thought I should be.
As an introvert, I felt like an outsider.
I didn’t want to be on the outside anymore, so I pushed myself beyond my comfort zone for years. What introvert can walk into a room full of strangers and leave a room full of friends? This introvert.
The most important book I have ever read is Jenn Granneman’s The Secret Lives of Introverts: Inside Our Hidden World (paid link).
I made notes with sticky notes on sections that pertained to me. I sent that book to my husband while he was deployed. I needed to share with him what I was learning about myself.
Can I still do that? Yes, I can. That wasn’t a talent created by alcohol that resulted from years and years of honing that skill.
Do I want to still that? Not really. I don’t have the desire to have a ton of friends. And in reality, how close was I really to any of those people in that room? No, not close at all.
As an introvert, that lifestyle was not sustainable for me. It leads to a lot of drinking. I can only push myself out of my comfort zone for so long.
That change, that shift from being something that I am inherently not, was a huge shift for those in my circle. Especially my hubs. He is an extrovert. He needs to be around people. And I used to help him meet that need. But I can’t anymore.
Support My Limits
This change or realization has been great for me. I am happier knowing my limits and being able to express what I need. And because I am happier and more at ease with myself, I think (hope) that my hubs is too.
I have help in that arena too. My hubs is my number one advocate. He sees the work, and he sees the pain and the struggle that I go through every single day.
He checks in with me about how I will feel going out and doing whatever. And he reminds me to be aware of my energy levels.
It’s awesome. And I struggle with that at the same time. I am not used to other people actually caring about how I am doing on that level.
So it’s both cool and scary. And I couldn’t do any of this without him.
The Addiction Center defines a high-functioning alcoholic as someone who habitually drinks an unhealthy amount of alcohol while maintaining some level of professional and personal success.
Many of them are successful at work and home, and sometimes their friends and family don’t even know they have a problem.
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