The straw…

I was reading this blog post today:

She Divorced Me Because I Left Dishes by the Sink

and it made me think… I remember feeling like this… saying these words…

“But it’s important to me…”

Which has taken me down memory lane, reflecting…

Our biggest fight was about drinking. I didn’t like him drinking every single night. Yes, it was only one or two most nights, but I hated it.

I explained it over and over… both of my parents are alcoholics… I’ve always sworn I will not raise my children in a house where either parent drinks every night. I don’t care what anyone else does – that’s their choice. I’m not judging them either. I just cannot raise my kids in that environment. It’s too many memories. The smell of the stale beer cans for a start… The words ‘Hey *child*, can you get me a beer from the fridge’… I can’t do it.

Over and over… and over…

Me: If you don’t have a drinking problem, then you shouldn’t need to drink every night….

Him: I don’t have a problem and I don’t need to drink, but I’ve worked hard every day and I deserve a drink…

And there it was… every single time… ‘I DESERVE a drink’…

Me: But it matters to me. I’ve explained it to you. Over and over… and over… I’m not asking you to never drink again (although, if I did, you should be willing to consider that)… I’m asking you to not drink every night. I’m asking you to go to the pub and have that drink with friends there even. If you need to have that drink, drink it where the kids can’t see…

Him: This is my house. I work hard… I DESERVE a drink…

The final argument was about this – the one that began the ultimate end… He was drinking when I wasn’t around or when I was locked in the Office working… telling the kids not to let me know… on the way home he’d grab a ‘roadie’… but, in one of those bizarre moments, I looked in the cupboard and realised the large vodka bottle that was full two weeks earlier, was empty…. and suddenly, the conversation spiralled…

Me: (finally) When was the last 24 hour period in which you haven’t had an alcoholic drink?!?

Him: I don’t know… a couple of months? Does it matter? I DESERVE a drink… I work hard…

Me: You’re getting the kids to lie to me for you?

And that was it.. The moment I just looked and thought – what am I doing?

It wasn’t about the alcohol – well, it kind of was… but it was about the fact that he wouldn’t ever put me first. Not once. It was always his needs, wants and desires before anyone else.

I didn’t want to be his mother. I didn’t want to always tell him what to do. I didn’t want to always be the ‘bad’ person making the hard decisions. And… I wanted someone who respected my hopes and dreams and wishes… my hurts as well as my joys… Someone who would have given up alcohol altogether if I asked, because it was important to ME. As simple as that.

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