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When You Can't Save Them from Themselves

Coming to Terms with the Truth While Dealing with an Alcoholic Spouse

By Susana ShadowsPublished 5 years ago 3 min read
Picture By (Own work) CC BY-SA 4.0 via Wikimedia Commons

If you or anyone close to you are dealing with an alcoholic then you most likely know what it means to hear "you can save them." No truer four words have ever been spoken.

Those of us who deal daily with the evils of alcoholism and the damage and pain it can bring to a family are well aware we have just about tried every method known to man to help the alcoholic.

From my own personal experience and I will just start with 2019, for now, it has been one major sucky year. Winters are hard because my alcoholic husband works in construction and living in a state that often sees all fours seasons arrive within 24 makes it even tougher to make a living in his line of work.

We squeaked through January, right up until January 25th that is. Well, actually the week before because the husband had been in bed complaining he was fighting off a flu bug. Most likely because it had been running wild through our town. However, flu or no flu, it did not stop him from drinking his daily vodka.

Okay to be honest, he was drinking it slower than the norm because he did not feel like going out, and he knew there was no way I would buy it for him. Friday, January 25 around 11 AM, things took a scary turn.

I went into his bedroom to see how he was feeling. He was sitting up in bed, complaining his head hurt and he was having trouble seeing. He asked for water. I went down to get a bottle of water and when I returned he was lying in his bed, eyes glazed over, and looked to be having a seizure.

I quickly called 911 and they arrived within two minutes. While they cared for him I jumped into a pair of jeans and shoes and headed out the door in the ambulance to the hospital. I was sitting in the emergency waiting room when my daughter arrived. A few seconds later we heard the code blue come across the intercom. My heart sank.

A nurse came through the doors to me, grabbed my hand, and said I needed to come with her. My heart dropped. I thought to myself, "Okay, this is it, get ready,"

She told me that my husband had stopped breathing and that they were able to get him breathing on his own again. He was being restrained because he is confused and combative. He also had no idea where he was, or who any of his family were.

After hours of testing, he was admitted to the ICU. It was determined he was suffering from withdrawal from alcohol. He remained restrained and unaware for five days before he started to recognize me or the kids. He was unsure why he was there and even believed the year to be 2002.

He finally got his sense about him and doctors explained to him the dangers of him continuing to drink. They made him aware that he would have died at home had I not been around that day to check on him.

Has this made a difference? No, He was released from the hospital, took another two weeks off work to recover, now mid-February. He has continued to drink just has much, but I believe it is more without looking back.

Now he added another $80,000 plus in medical bills just from that stay, has no cares about his health, and doesn't seem to care he is putting us in financial ruins.

It is my belief he will continue on and doesn't worry about bills because he knows sooner rather than later he will drink himself to death and all of his pain and financial worries will be dumped here on me to contend with.

He will continue to drink until he takes his last breath, whether that be here at home, surrounded by family, in a hospital, or bar, or on a street where he collapses.

I have come to terms with it... It is out of my hands... I can't save him.


About the Creator

Susana Shadows

A woman of the world who feels like she has already lived many lifetimes and adventures in just a handful of decades.

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