Maybe we’ve been looking at this all wrong. Maybe by shrouding in shame people who become addicted to the soothing properties of alcohol, we are stifling potential and ignoring the greatness hiding in plain sight. Maybe as we look away in disgust and disapproval, we are emboldening the stigma. As alcoholics, maybe our own behavior — like tucking our tails between our legs and slinking into a church basement — maybe that keeps us buried under the crushing weight of an embarrassing diagnosis.
Maybe we’ve got it all backwards. Misunderstandings happen, you know.
Do you realize how many wildly successful…
When Matt was actively drinking, Sheri had to deal with three unappealing characteristics of her alcoholic husband when on vacations or celebrating holidays: his moods were unpredictable, he was needy, and the alcohol accentuated his insecurities. There was nothing festive, and very little that was enjoyable, about vacationing with an alcoholic. Now, in significant sobriety, life continues for Sheri, while Matt is curious why she isn’t more enthusiastic about the improvement. On this episode, Sheri and Matt discuss one of the most significant disconnects between the ex-drinker and the loved one in an alcoholic relationship in recovery.
If you love or loved an alcoholic, and your recovery could benefit from connection with people who understand, please check out our Echoes of Recovery program.
Originally published at https://un-toxicated.com.
Nickie knew she and Josh had relationship problems. When he first declared himself an alcoholic, she couldn’t believe it. She didn’t want to even think about a drinking problem until they had their marriage on good terms (little did she know at the time that the alcohol was the cause of the relationship troubles). Josh’s friends told him he was fine, his coworkers kept inviting him to drink, and everything he knew about being a man told him alcohol after a hard day of work was an adult’s prerogative. But when the depths of the issue were revealed on a…
“The opposite of addiction is not sobriety.” When journalist Johann Hari made that statement as part of the conclusion of his TED Talk in 2015, I didn’t disagree with him. I mostly didn’t disagree with him because I was still drinking in 2015 and didn’t give a shit about a speech titled, “Everything You Think You Know About Addiction is Wrong.” But even now, today, I think Hari got that first part right. Sobriety doesn’t fix anything. It is neither the solution, nor is it the opposite of the addictive behavior that has brought millions of us to our knees.
Sheri and Matt welcome Dr. Abby Medcalf to the podcast. Abby is an author, a podcast host, a speaker, a psychologist, a recovery survivor, and has over 30 years of experience working with relationships and people in recovery. She tells Sheri and Matt why couples who think they have a communication problem almost always have a competition problem, and she explains why the person in the relationship in the most pain has to change first and give 100%. Abby’s enthusiasm and vibrant story-telling matches her experience and intelligence to make this a master-class level episode.