One Day at a Time in Al-Anon

Published by at 1:29 pm under Common Concerns

Welcome to “First Steps to Al-Anon Recovery” from Al-Anon Family Groups. This is a series of podcasts to discuss some common concerns for people who have been affected by someone else’s drinking.

Lorraine, Art, and Eileen are with us today. All are active Al-Anon members who are willing to talk with us about one of the basic principles of the Al-Anon program.

How to locate a meeting


54 comments on “One Day at a Time in Al-Anon”

  1. tracy says:

    I separated the illness from the person til the devil rose up and said, “You will go insane with him. I won’t let go, I’ll just take two of you.”

    My choice. Take care of my own sanity and that of what’s left of my family.

  2. Sue says:

    For me Al-Anon is about getting the “beam” out of my own eye, no matter what my spouse does. And the result is so much more serenity, freedom and hopefully a relationship with God that comes first.

  3. Jules says:

    Focusing on me, caring for me, caring for someone else rather than my mood swinging, miserable, and emotionally challenging husband. (He is in treatment, but when we get together after a while he starts picking holes in me. I am never good enough, even though I have done everything I can to keep us financially stable and pay for his medical needs. When he came off his Oxycontin 3 years ago he started to drink instead. Some kind of dopamine deficiency, he says. Like that’s an excuse for his behaviour, or that I have to put up with his behaviour).

    Finally he got an impaired/assault ticket and decided to stop boozing. I find his behaviours manipulative/ controlling/ unreasonable. And I hope he gets well, but it will be a very long haul and I have a lot to recover from and to still go through with him recovering. Alcohol pickles the brain and the behaviours and thought patterns become very distorted. Of course, he thinks he’s reasonable?

    I think. Regardless of not being the cause, having control or being unable to cure it, I still have to detach myself from his alcohol self, wet or dry. I feel sad that he has to feel this way, but I realised that I need to be safe and unstressed. Stress is bad for my blood sugars and so I do whatever it takes to get through the day and live in the present, focusing on the things I am grateful for. Breath, my feet, my cute dogs, sunshine, meals, a vacuum cleaner, Netflix, a good day at work, helping others, water, also setting boundaries in place for my own sanity.

    As an older adult I am sad that my husband, who once was a pleasant man, has become the very opposite of that. And the journey he has put us through is pointless and selfish–which of course is what the alcoholic or drug user is, selfish and self centered–and the recovery if successful will take time. How much courage I have to go through this, only God and time will tell. I can forgive him and I do so each time he makes another abusive remark, but now I tell him he’s unreasonable later, when he’s less moody. I pick my moments–after all, we want to win the war, and so I pick my battles carefully.

  4. BeckyG says:

    There are many divorced people in the program–and believe it or not, we are happily divorced.

    Al-Anon does not advocate divorce or not-divorce, but helps a person find support while you do what you need to do.

    For me, I couldn’t live with someone who was actively drinking and drugging–and raise three kids. Things became violent and dangerous, and I had to take him at his word. If he said, “You never know what might happen to you in your sleep,” I had to take that as a serious threat–drunk or not.

    I am, today, a much happier person. I have created a safe space that does not include my ex-husband. He continues to drink and drug, much to the annoyance of doctors and social workers, and has little-to-no contact with his children. The disease of alcoholism steals lives, families, and more. He sadly may be one of those people that “follow the disease into the gates of insanity,” but I don’t have to go with him. Thank you to the Al-Anon program for helping me find my own path

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