The Last Time I Lost My Husband
(San Diego, CA)
My husband was and still is an alcoholic. The first time I lost my husband, his mother threw him out of her house while we were starting out. I was devastated because I loved him very much but also so hurt by the effects of alcoholism.
I set out to find him again and I did. And he reached for sobriety and tried it for a number of years. It was wonderful. I never knew such bliss.
Then, my husband had a serious injury and used alcohol to diminish his pain. The alcohol overpowered our relationship. Soon, he had several small strokes. Probably a contributing factor was the alcohol abuse. After the strokes, my husband was never the same. His memory was gone and he was a different person. He just never had the same level of thought that he did before. When this happened, I grieved for the loss of the man I fell in love with while I took care of this alcoholic invalid.
The drinking got to both of us. For him, he just wanted to be in an alcohol fog most of the time. For me, it brought out his anger, his irrational thinking about “recovering from the stroke” which wasn’t going to happen according to the doctors and changes in my own physical health that he didn’t want to accept as true.
I told him that I couldn’t and wouldn’t be around alcohol and its consequences. I told him he didn’t have to stop drinking but that he’d have to stop being around me if he did. That didn’t work well. He just couldn’t bring himself to not be around me when he was drunk. And I just couldn’t abide the cruel behavior he exhibited. The fights were horrendous and I was a tortured soul feeling like a prisoner in my own house, locked away in a room, while he drank just to keep out of his way.
I finally told him it was obvious he couldn’t respect my wishes to not share in alcoholic consequences. So, I told him he had to go.
It’s not been long that he has been gone but I’m grieving all over again. I am sad because of the love that I had for him and the loss of the man to alcohol. I don’t know if it would have been better to lose him to another woman or not. I miss the man I married and I miss my husband’s presence that gave me great comfort when he was sober. We shared a love but it is so sad to see that love hacked to pieces from the damages of alcoholism to a sober person.
I don’t think he ever understood how much the things he said to me hurt and how I made excuses to myself for his behavior. So I have not only lost my husband the way he was to a stroke but then lost the rest of him to alcohol.
I miss him and I grieve for myself and the loss of the person I loved so much.