I don't regret what I wrote yesterday. I got several hundred comments and emails from people thanking me for letting them know they're not alone. I can't count the number of people who have experience with similar situations. In fact, later today, I plan on reading and sharing them because I think they'll inspire other people.
Still, I want to clarify a few things. I had planned on writing more today anyway, but after my mom called to tell me how disappointed my parents are with me for writing that and to let me know it would be my fault if something bad happened to Joe because of it, and after my mother-in-law told Joe to call a lawyer and sue me for slander, I decided to take the time to write right now instead of waiting til tonight when I could get my thoughts straight.
I was not bashing Joe in my post last night. He is not a bad or evil person. He is an alcoholic who has been sober for 17 years. He quit drinking right before we got married and he's stayed clean throughout the years. He takes his sobriety seriously and I'm proud of him for that accomplishment. Especially when you consider his parents and how he was raised by an alcoholic father, it's an amazing accomplishment.
Joe is a good person. He's a very hard worker and always has been. He's put in more than his fair share of hours trying to provide for our family. He's also a great dad. He has no problem taking all 6 kids out for the day and playing with them, reading to them, helping with homework, giving the little ones baths.
But, although he's sober, he has still has alcoholic traits. He lies. He lies about big things, little things, everything. This is the number one thing that has to lead to the destruction of our marriage, in my opinion. You can't trust someone who lies to you repeatedly. The bible says to forgive a person not 7 times, but 70 times 7. He's already reached 490 times. OK, ok, I know that it really means you should forgive repeatedly without a limit. But even though you may forgive someone, how do you ever trust them again? And how can you love someone you can't trust? I haven't figured that one out.
He told a whopper when he was caught doing something about a year ago and blamed it on the kids. At that point, I said I was done and was going to file for divorce. That was right about the time I was given the movie Fireproof to review. Joe watched it with me and something clicked with him. He changed. He seemed genuinely aware of what the years of lying had done and I honestly believed he was changing for the better. He has a library of Christian books about marriage. He read his bible every day and prayed. I really thought this might be it. But he couldn't understand why years of disappointment and hurt didn't instantly melt away with me. He's been trying to be patient with me, but I don't know when or if my feelings toward him will ever change. And then something like this will happen and things are set back again...
Joe does not go out and seek drugs that I know of. He doesn't have a problem like that. It's just that whenever he's prescribed pain killers, he seems to have problems taking them. It happened with his prescribed sleeping pills this past summer and pain killers for his back about 12 years ago which led to major depression.
Now, apparently Joe was just dehydrated because the pain in his throat was keeping him from drinking. When I asked him if he wanted some warm tea yesterday morning, he said, "No thanks, I'm drinking water." I didn't realize he hadn't been drinking enough because honestly, my attention was focused on my kids. After some IV rehydration, he perked up and was back to his normal self. I feared he was suffering from depression (possibly from the pain killers because that was my previous experience with him.) I wanted him to get help. I'm glad it wasn't depression and just dehydration this time. Thankfully the fluids have made a world of difference.
And according to Joe's doctor, he didn't "overdose" on the pain medication. He took too much and it did raise the numbers on his liver function, but not to a dangerous level. So, I apologize for using the wrong word.
I never wrote that post last night to bash Joe or anyone else who deals with addictions or problems like that. It's a sucky situation and I wouldn't wish either side of it on anyone. I just had to write. It's cathartic for me. I feel better when I write about the things that are bothering me and pushing me to my limits. And although I don't regret it, I do apologize for any hurt feelings.