LifeRing’s e-mail groups have always been a great resource of support, encouragement, and community to those who use them as recovery tools. So many of the posts people write come from the deepest parts of themselves as a means of expressing their internal recovery processes. A lot of people have described the end of their relationship to their drug of choice – and their decision to kick it to the curb once and for all – to that of finally leaving of an abusive lover or spouse. A divorce, if you will…
The following is just such a post, created by my dear, brilliant husband, Rich C., which exhibits a…conversation, between one’s newly empowered Sober Self and their Addicted Self. It’s so good, it seems irresponsible not to share it with everyone!
So here, without further adieu, is a break-up of epic proportions, written by Rich C.:
Alcohol: Hey, sweetie, it’s been a while. Have you missed me? Did you get my messages, and my texts?
Me: I supposed I sort of missed you, but that’s not why I called. I have news for you.
Alcohol: Can I come over? Can you tell me in person?
Me: Uh, not really. I prefer that we keep our distance. The news is that I want a divorce.
Alcohol: A divorce? What about our vows?
Me: That’s just it. I don’t even remember our wedding. We were hanging out a lot, and next thing I know you’re wearing this ridiculously expensive ring, my bank account’s gone, and I have no recollection of anything.
Alcohol: Well, darling, I do recall. As you know, when we make love I do what I can to erase any memories of our intimacies, and other stuff.
Me: Yeah, I have noticed. You didn’t used to do that, you know.
Alcohol: Well, our love has evolved, so to speak.
Me: Yes, it has. So, are you saying that we made vows, “to love, honor, cherish and obey,” etc.?
Alcohol: Well, you made them. I don’t do that sort of thing. But, take my word for it, you recited it over and over.
Me: Well, here’s the problem. If/when I promised to stay true, to love, honor, cherish, etc…..
Alcohol: Don’t forget “obey!”
Me: Sorry. Obey, and so forth, “in sickness and in health,” I wasn’t thinking in terms of YOU making me sick.
Alcohol: Don’t forget “til death do us part.”
Me: Precisely. Right. But it didn’t say I had to wait until my bride murdered me.
Alcohol: Okay, whatever. So you want another trial separation.
Me: No, this time is different.
Alcohol: Hey, that’s MY line.
Me: Yeah, and I’m sorry to say I’ve bought it all too many times, but I’ve finally figured out that it’s a lie.
Alcohol: So anyway, we’ll take a little time away from each other, I guess.
Me: You don’t get it. I’m done. Through. Finished. Bye-bye.
Alcohol: Well, I’ll go ahead and give you a call at 5 PM every day.
Me: No, you won’t. I’ve taken out a restraining order against you, and I’ve set all my phones to recognize your number and send you to voice mail, which I never listen to. You call me, and you go to jail.
Alcohol: Like I’ve never been to jail. Big deal.
Me: Yeah I know–we went together, remember? But this won’t be like that. I won’t be there, and neither will any of your other lovers. You’ll just be sitting there by yourself, with nobody to talk to. So you’d better not start your harassing calls, this time.
Alcohol: Well, then I’ll send my mind-worms after you. You can’t hang up on them.
Me: You wanna bet? You know what, you’re just a friggin’ molecule, is what you are. You have no power over me.
Alcohol: I’m a part of you.
Me: You were. Now you’re just a memory, and a mostly bad one at that.
Alcohol: (sniffling) Is there someone else?
Me: Yeah, there is. And her name is Life. Guess what, she’s not perfect, but she’s not trying to kill me and make me do stupid things.
Alcohol: Life? I remember when you’d come over so you could get away from that bitch.
Me: Yeah, that’s right, I used to do that, but I didn’t know how good I had it then. And there’s a bonus. Once I started seeing Life again she introduced me to Bobbi, and Bobbi is my one true love.
Alcohol: Wait a minute; you’re cheating on me with Life, and you’re cheating on Life with someone named Bobbi?
Me: No, not cheating. It’s a threesome, if you will. The truth is, Bobbi’s a part of Life, just like love’s a part of life. I’ve got my kids, my friends, my hobbies, my work, art, music, all things I love. They’re not separate from life, and neither is heartache, loss, disappointment, fear, or pain. But I found out that trying to kill the bad stuff kills it all.
Alcohol: Come on, you know I’m a great enhancer of pleasures and a reducer of pain.
Me: You were, but over time you became a pleasure reducer and pain enhancer.
Alcohol: So, what are you claiming–“mental cruelty,” or something?
Me: I could, but we’re in California, and it’s a no-fault divorce state. All I’m saying is “irreconcilable differences.”