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I Went To Al Anon For The 1st Time Tonight.

My husband reckons he has his drinking under control. That I should be supportive of the positive changes he has made in his life and that after a whole 2 weeks of not drinking I should feel positive and happy for him.

Maybe that's true. But I just don't trust him.

Tonight after a huge fight (I want him to go to rehab, but he doesn't want to go because he's already solved the problem) I left the house and attended my first Al Anon meeting.

Of course as I arrived I saw on of my husband's employees standing outside having a ciggie. I turned around and went back to the car park to freak out. Has she seen me? She will know immediately that I'm here because of my husband and her boss! F--k!! What to do???

As I was getting ready to sneak back to my car a nice lady pulled me out of the bushes and asked if it was my first time here (you think? Hiding in the church garden = not so subtle...) she encouraged me and reminded me its Anonomous.

So I took a big breath, tried not to vomit, and walked in to say hi. It's a public holiday here today so there were only 6 people. No avoiding the employee. She was sweet. Lent me her book and told me to turn to page 94. It worked and I know she is a very honest person. But still. She cannot un-know that her bosses drinking is so bad that his wife is at Al Anon... How would that make you feel? Confident in your job security?

Anyway. The meeting was a bit painful. People who are crap at reading aloud reading pages of the book. But they are kind and nice and I will go again. Once is not enough for me to form an opinion.

The most surprising part of the whole thing was being confronted with how much shame, secretivity and embarrassment I harbour around my hubby's drinking. I cried for the first 20 min. Just being there was so exposing. I can not hide from my problems any more.

If you are considering Al Anon i suggest you try it. Just to see how being there brings up repressed feelings... Yikes. I have a lot of work to do!
NeedingToVent NeedingToVent 36-40, F 4 Responses Sep 24, 2012

Your Response


I have repressed feelings too. I understand. My husband also feels he has his drinking under control. But then it is Weeks sometimes months later I catch him drinking AGAIN. He gets upset with my feelings and that I don't trust him. I want to go to Al Anon but my husband would be so mad about it.
I wish you the best. Thanks for your story !

Hi. Why don't you lie to your husband and go to the Al Anon meeting? Maybe you can tell him you joined a book club! I know it may sound extreme for me to say that. But you need support and just the way you wrote that you would choose not to get support because you fear making your husband mad... That part of your comment makes me feel just how much you need support of others in your situation. Al Anon will not stop your husbands drinking. But it can help you cope and find the strength to make choices from a good place. All the best!

I just came upon this site. I left my husband of 40 years 3 months ago and it was and is the hardest thing I have ever done. I went to see a therapist 2 days ago that told me my entire life after one sitting. My husband drinks heavily and has such a negative view of the world and how horrible everything is. Everything revolves around him even still. He started out being very angry and acting insane when I left...lashing out with wild accusations and disrupting the whole family. Now, after telling me he wants me back and he can't live without me, and I told him I was going to see a therapist and that he needed to also and that I needed time alone to work this out...he made a suicide attempt 4 days ago. He is now in the hospital four hours away and everyone is telling me not to go to him. Its very hard to know what to do. I can't pass an animal in pain without helping and I have not gone to help him. I am trying to take one day at a time and I don't want to go back and now this. Get away from your alcholic husband while you can...don't waste your life trying to fix his doesn't work and then they can't live without you and you are trapped. I feel so trapped and like I have come so far and now he may win.

Hi. I have also been struggling with the reality of disengaging from all my husband's problems and to stop rescuing him. I know its needed, unless I step away he can never fully take responsibility and be accountable for his own choices. But in your situation I feel for you, it must be really hard to know that a man you must have (and perhaps still do) loved is in pain. Staying away probably is for the best, you must not get sucked back in to his vortex of alcohol and negativity! Perhaps send him some flowers? That would allow you to feel you have done something without getting involved or taking any of his responsibility on your shoulders? Just an idea.
Well done for having the strength and self-worth to leave him, I am sure your life is going to improve every single day now!

I went to my second meeting last night. There were 14 people this time and so the meeting 'vibe' was quite different to the previous one. There is also a new chairlady and she is much more vibrant than last week's lady. She related an excellent account of her personal journey over the last 6 years and it was great to know that there is hope. Also that certain behaviour is actually a symptom of the Alcoholism rather than a personality defect of the alcoholic. I was quite surprised at the commonality of behaviour!
It felt great to express how angry I am with people that understand why. I have so much stored up anger inside of me that I simply do not know what to do with it. No one had any quick-fix or magic-pill for me and actually that was encouraging in itself. It suggested to me that Al-Anon is reality based and familiar with these issues. But still, if I had the opportunity to get rid of my stored anger in a single task I would do it, oh I would, to get rid of it would be such an unburdening. I think if I ever told my normal friends about my deep, deep well of fury they would think me crazy and start backing away, ever so slowly...
So there is a small glimmer of hope. But still I am in a quandary. I do not know how many of my marriage problems are due to the addiction? If he gets better I might still want to divorce him? Maybe its better to just get it over with now and then he can make his own decisions about himself without me? Its so tempting. I have even started applying for jobs in my home country. If I get one will I take it and buy a plane ticket? It would be nice to start over again without him. I know I will still need to deal with all the accumulated damage and probably find Al-Anon again there. But its nice to start dreaming of a new life so for now I am going to continue.

I so know where your coming from my husband is doing the eaxt same thing. He was going i go to counciling which made me so happy but now seems to think he can do it on his own. I live in a very small community and am nervous to go to my first al anon meeting incase I run into someone I know. Even though it's suppose to be "anonymous" I still think people tend to gossip. But taking the first step makes the situation real. Congratulations on being brave enough to take the first step.