So maybe all my recent quiet agonizing is going to be worth something?
I say "quiet" agonizing because, while I've been writing about it a lot, I haven't had much to say about it at home. I've found that we get along a lot better when I'm not reciting the litany of his offenses against me or recounting every single change in feelings I've had in my tropical rainforest of a brain. Sometimes, I think this approach is hurting me...I'm stuffing things that I need to get out. Other times, I think it's working. I gave up on the need to tell him all the ways he has hurt/was hurting me when I realized that he already knows, that he's already suffering and paying in his own way. I recognized that what I was doing was expressing a need to be heard by him, and once I recognized that he'd heard me and that he knew, it was ok for me to let it go.
But I'm still agonizing, still hurting.
Last night, I got home from a long day of avoiding home, and he'd cleaned the house, and he told me he wanted to talk. He said he wanted me to tell him everything.
I want to know everything, every bit of what you've been holding back. I'm ready to change. I need to know all of it.
I couldn't muster up the anger to tell what he wanted...I think he wanted me to tear into him, to rip his ass a new one or whatever. I could have done it a month ago, but now I can't. Instead, I told him that I want him to go to meetings, more than anything...that I need to feel like there is someone or something outside of me that's interested in him getting better. That I want him to have a sponsor and a philosophy and a way of life that will help him grow and change and be the kind of man that he wants to be.
He said he would, that he knows he needs to. We've got a date for Saturday. That will be the first meeting, and he said no matter what that he'll go, no matter what kind of excuses he comes up with, what kind of mess he looks like, what kind of plans he can make instead, that he'll for sure, no matter what and no matter how much he doesn't want to, go to that meeting. He thinks he'd rather go to AA regularly than NA, so he asked me to help him find some AA meetings near the house.
I don't know if he was sensing my frustration and he's looking for a way to make me happier or if he's really feeling pushed to a wall of his own, but either way, I'm getting what I need.
I'd thought that if I just kept my own life and stuff and feeling safe from him, that it really wouldn't matter what he did...but it does matter what he does. I think that setting healthy boundaries and being reasonable with myself and my expectations has made it actually clearer for me, however, to see what I need from him...and I need him to do something active to help himself. I know I can't fix him, but I also can't bear to watch him slowly unravelling.
I have seen from my own growth with Nar-Anon that the whole 12 step business works, and I'm not even that deep in it yet. I hope that he's in a place where he can let it work for him, and I really believe that we can grow a lot together...working the steps together could be a way to start moving in the same direction...