Thursday, October 11, 2007

Try, then try again

I'm so thankful to the people who visit my blog and offer their support. They help me to realize there is hope. I always go and read their blogs and get some insight into what others are dealing with.

Sometimes when I think of myself as a recovering sex addict I wonder if I really am recovering. Some days it feels like the only way I can survive, the only way I can escape, the only way I can feel anything is to live in my addiction. I make progress in my recovery, but I never trust myself enough to believe that I really will ever be the sober person that I see so many recovering addicts become.

My brother in law, who was a raging alcoholic and smoker for years, once told me, "You can't just try to quit. You just have to quit." It seems so easy when said that way. Giving yourself no option.

As I have tried to prepare for an interview on Friday, I have needed to use the computer a lot. And when I am at the computer I feel the need to reach out to someone, to not be here alone. I know it is all my insecurities and fears that take me to that place. Yet, I can't seem to break free from my need to just connect to something that will give me that little kick. That's why I am thankful when I come and find nice comments on my blog. It reminds me that there are people out there who can give me positive reinforcement, help me feel better about myself, without me giving myself up sexually, and degrading myself in ways that most "normal" people would find unimaginable.

I spent all of last week with my family. I rarely had the chance to be on the computer. I fought off the compulsion to run away from all I was feeling, even though I didn't understand most of it. I still feel very overwhelmed with my feelings and unable to process them. I know that is why my disease is playing with me.

I think about my brother ... what a good person he was, what demons he faced. Yet he survived it all. I wonder how much he buried, what all he must have dealt with or never dealt with, that none of us ever saw. My family doesn't see the demons I battle. They just never hear from me and when they do I focus the entire conversation on them, pausing only to talk of me if I am forced and then only at the surface.

I want to spend some time here telling you about my brother. He went to work at 13 to help my mother pay the bills, because my biological father -- the man I met for the first time last week -- left behind his wife and three kids, only to come back one weekend and give her a fourth, me. My brother was too young to take on those responsibilities, but he did. He never finished high school, likely not even 10th grade. He drove a truck for most of his life and befriended every person he met and brought them home if he needed to. My sister in law told us that of the 23 years they were married, they had spent one night alone. Otherwise the house was filled with kids or family or some of the "strays" that he brought in to his house because there was no place else for them to live. I even lived with them for a while, which helped me get my feet on the ground, and gave me a sense of family when I moved away from my college friends who had been my only source of family for so long. And when my husband and I moved back to my home state in 2005, I began meeting my brother for breakfast every Thursday morning. We never talked about much of importance, but we sat down and had a meal together and enjoyed each other's company. I will always be thankful for that time. I'm thankful too for the time I got to spend with him just two weeks before he died, sitting by his side, nursing his wounds, and teasing him about the silly things he was saying as he got to point where he was "talking out of his head." And I'm thankful that he waited until I got there last Saturday to take his final breath. Rest in peace, my brother. You will always be loved.


Casdok said...

Your post brought a tear to my eye.
Your brother a wonderful person.

momof2 said...

So sorry to hear about your brother. I hope you are able to stay strong during this very difficult time.

Mary P Jones (MPJ) said...

I think, in many ways, it's easier to quit substances like alcohol or tobacco than sex. You can stay away from liquor stores and bars -- but you can't stop talking to people and that's the first step...

Hugs again to you on the loss of your brother...

Recovering Wino said...

I'm so sorry about the loss of your brother.

All addictions are so difficult to 'give up'. I think we always fight it, it just gets a little easier over time if we keep remembering that we are addicts.

And I do think sex/love addiction is especially difficult because "love" seems so important to us as human beings.

Summer said...

Hey girlie. I'm so sorry about your loss. I can't imagine the pain you must be feeling. I'll keep you in my thoughts.