37: Marriage IN or OUT of Recovery – For Better or Worse? (Sort Of)

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Transcript:

it feels like or it seems like it seems like the Republicans are generally more about themselves and money and not as much concern for other people just before you say anything drastic you know right out there and I don’t well then all this I don’t know that that’s necessarily true but it comes from the perspective more of individual liberties individual rights individual responsibilities less government right like we should all just be taking care of our own and you know without less involvement and so that can feel and look a lot less caring about others and I will say sit back back to the whole mass debate like this is what it feels like most of the time I’m talking to people about the mass thing I wear masks I don’t care it’s an inconvenience you know I’m not sure if it works or not but whatever how I wear this stupid mask I don’t care I carry one in my car every now and again you know I run into an issue with forgetting it or whatever but so what that makes people happy and we feel better the whole idea that though isn’t necessarily to protect me is protect other people and most of the people that want to start yelling about wear masks will say well let anymore very impressive on the virus yeah cuz they’re not to protect you they’re to protect you from spreading it to other people nobody really cares if you get I mean I’ll say it that way but you know what I mean it’s not as important if you get it you’re allowed to get it I guess if you want you can go get corroded by Lucas but when you go out to the store we would like you to not spread it to all the other people so it’s not about you it’s about you know so when you’re infringing upon my liberties and you know all that [ __ ] it’s like well yeah but you’re infringing upon other people’s liberties too and if we’re gonna ask you know what are you giving up versus what do you gain I think the funny thing is I usually my things that don’t have a purpose or or false sense of security i mock things that are and I feel totally way more secure wearing a basket like I feel protect you enough even if I’m not I’m like whatever it feels good yeah well there is some in my head that says there’s no way it doesn’t help like a little bit like it doesn’t help in my head of like it’s gotta help something

pick this furniture for free it was I was thinking I don’t matter I just kind of move this if I come where right dude like which I can’t facing the camera a little more but I don’t know how to do that from this side really yeah you would have to sit it like more weird angle this looks [ __ ] cool I don’t I haven’t wanted to get a bandana cuz I think the bandana tickles like always

look at that tire accent piece is great

now what is that that’s like a what what is that called like a gator okay I’ve heard some people talk about him I don’t know what they were exactly love it where do you get him everywhere I guess everywhere sells them now yeah I do that skiing thing I mean I had I used to have one for skiing but it was the whole head because it yeah everything closed you know I was like I don’t want to wear that out around ask us

oh this is the one I’ve gotten so used to doing this at home and being able to just flip through my computer I gotta be honest too all these you know Google meets and zoom meetings has really just made me realize we need teleportation like now I don’t want to drive anywhere yeah I was getting up at like 8 25 grabbing a bite for breakfast and getting a coffee and we were meeting at 9:00 and it was like okay somebody told me they were gonna work on a logo a little bit more for us cuz they thought they could do better than what we had yeah okay we’re gonna share they didn’t like it uh I just think they thought it could be better and I’m not in disagreement with that concept I mean I like it better than what we had but I if I had more like creative input to it I’d changes a little

we had to bring up all these

because others

and we’re gonna do relationships right interesting oh how are we doing relationships or sponsorship so now I gotta bring up all this [ _ ] on my phone and be able to get back to it so monitoring chrome tabs I asked people on Twitter what it was like for gambling addicts when all the sports stopped how did that affect their community I thought that was an interesting discussion but it really wasn’t that interesting they just bet on like virtual horse races and [ _ ] I mean I get it I’ve been desperate of my you know load of addiction to but that’s it oh yeah there’s something for me like I don’t like they were playing a lot of old like replays of sports and like I don’t want to watch old replace of sports and I don’t know what it is like so in thinking about I was like what is it about me that I only really want to see a live thing or at least something that happened really recently like I guess I feel like if it was the 1984 World Series I don’t give a [ _ ] and even that I probably I mean I’d have to be really bored and now with all the streaming content I have I’m like I’m probably not I want to see it but I want to see those condensed versions of games where they kind of show yeah the pitch would be a bet that matters not the whole bit there right stuff like that yeah I don’t I don’t get the same thing I don’t get people who if they can’t watch the Ravens game this Sunday they’ll record it and watch it tomorrow or tonight and I’m like okay I have done that but only if I didn’t like once you find the outcome it it does kind of ruin it I’ve done it with UFC stuff too like I’ll you know download if I could get the pay per views or whatever I’ll download it and try to watch it the next day but I try to completely avoid knowing what the outcome is because if I know the outcome I feel like it’s just not the same yeah it’s a spoiler finest things money thank you for your take your undefended position it’s the world thought that just well and I can’t say we’re taught cuz in the beginning I I wanted to make all that stuff fit to what’s okay and I think you’d mentioned a couple weeks ago I now that I’ve been around a while I don’t just take everything that everybody says I mean yeah it must be the truth because somebody said it in na and you know I read it it’s in the book so it’s got to be true it’s like now like anonymous addiction podcast he started pretty recently but his position is basically that AAA is a religion and he’s kind of like speaking out against that it’s really I’m interested I’m intrigued only here more honestly but he you know I guess he shares that opinion I don’t feel like religion I don’t know if a is a little different we definitely don’t seem good I think most people in na do believe in a Christian God yes because that’s what we got but I don’t feel like that’s forced on anybody I don’t and I think nowadays it’s more way more open-minded than ever like it seems to be getting less and less of a Christian God base because the population of the world is getting released to us yeah getting less and less Christian base right I always wonder when people stop messaging me back like I said something or they just we’re done well here’s what happens to me it and it’s never on purpose but it’ll be like some day like most days I don’t get messages from that many people it’s 2 or 3 maybe a couple of the guys at work because they’ll message me different times for different stuff most of time they’ll call me but and then maybe you my wife one of the kids for something but that’s usually in a group it’s usually like me Jen Abbey Sophie and now all our stuffs all within a group you know it’s four or five people and they’re usually right on my front screen but then occasionally I’ll get a day where I’ll get like different messages from like seven different people and then I click on them to read them but then I don’t reply right away so the little indicator that it’s a new message goes away and then it ends up down off the screen and I’m like I’m just not used to like scrolling down and making sure I reply to everyone right away I will literally not look I’ll leave that annoying ass notification on there for like 18 hours until everyone and somebody told me that once before and I was doing that at one point and I’ve gotten back away from that now and like pulling it up and read the message and then you know I’m at work I’ll get back to them in a minute and then I just throw it aside and then you know like say two hours later it’s done forgot and that message dropped down and I just like [ _ ] and I feel bad it happens by accident sometimes like honestly I didn’t even see somehow had said I read your message this morning when you were said five minutes late I pulled out my phone to text you and say hey am I at the wrong spot because hey we’re never clarified for sure maybe I got it wrong so I went to text you that and I said I’ll be five minutes late knowing I never read that

yeah I don’t think I can look at that my shorts are too short yeah

weirdness can we drink coffee yeah sure

so I because I had some technical issues recording my solo podcast on a couple of days because I did it on my phone I was like you know maybe it’s time I got a microphone for my house and we’ll move towards one day we’ll both have our own microphone and a setup and all that so I’m like starting to do all this research and figure out what the right way to do that so that way whatever I get will transfer over to later on when if we both get it so there’s USB microphones and XLR microphones XLR is like the professional Hollywood music studio cables that are like round with a few little pins sticking out okay so they don’t plug into a computer he gets a board he also needs like a da W or something that records it and sometimes you can like fancy ones you can do sound effects or amplify the sound right from that some of them are just you know they plug into that and then that plugs into your computer it’s like a try cast so [ __ ] confusing to try to figure all this out right yeah so and then I got the extra burden of I’m working with a Chromebook so most of this stuff is really for mac or on yourself that’s it come back this great system right so now I’m like you’re talking like $200 microphone $150 like boom piece that holds it like a five dollar screen and now I need a $800 computer to make sure I can run it like what really there’s none of this run on Chromebook like I love my Chromebook well set some goals like alright we’ll do this until we can make some money to start paying for some new stuff

maybe if I have retirement well that’s you gotta get big to get advertisements you can’t get advertised when it’s first I almost feel like we need to if we were gonna do that we’d have to leave anger we’d have to like record it on the side and have our own web hosting oh yeah I figure if we get to that point we would yeah I don’t know if we could sell like anchor does advertising through anchor but I don’t think we could just sell an advertisement I mean I guess we could we do our voices had yeah hard to say I don’t know I was gonna get some advertising on that recovery web site that was right before coronavirus hit and then coronavirus came and everything went [ _ ] crazy all podcast listening is down yeah but even because of that like we dropped just like everybody else in podcasting did cuz people are way out of their [ _ ] routine but we’ve worked back up to where we are past where we were pre cover of hours and so I guess that means we’re starting to catch on and I don’t know if that means whenever coronavirus

that’s when I keep hearing Trump or anybody say like we’re gonna beat this and we’re gonna get over to Mike no we aren’t like it is another thing we can be right but if you look at Europe I’ve read a really interesting article the other night that talked about they didn’t claim victory too soon and that’s why they’re prospering right now like they they held out long enough until they were really ready to open back up and it seemed likely at the time and that same article just like the article I read about how in 1918 the two different towns in Minnesota did it and one stayed close longer and bounced back faster and it’s like here we are where the [ _ ] idiot down for st. Paul that’s what we do that’s what the America does we repeat the same mistakes and expect different results we look back at history and go not this time better now we’re smarter we got this like the attic on the self-centered [ _ ] take of everything do you see all these places welcome back they’re reopening now I’ve seen colleges that are opening which I’m shocked about the rate does mean it’s recording right yeah we are I don’t know how they’re gonna do it on campus College my particular my college is gonna do on campus but my program isn’t yeah I don’t know what Sophie’s doing in the fall she signed up for all our classes I don’t know if they plan on on campus or not I think it’s we I don’t know how anybody’s gonna do on campus the way it looks right now it’s like I can’t you things are goin up we’ve had more cases than we’ve ever had before I get that they’re more spread out but I think it would depend if you just had like just had the classrooms and you could keep the seating kind of far enough apart it might not be so bad but if you start opening up like computer labs and study halls or whatever in cafeterias and vending machines and all that stuff then everybody’s touching the same stuff and you know and I think from what I again more should I’ve heard like there we are so like still in the like infantile phases of study in this we keep saying we learn new stuff but most of these studies are based on such small population groups you know what I mean like in these different little like pockets of studies here and there in different places and our version of this kind of science is just not a fast it’s not crank out results like that’s not how science works you know right when you’re doing all these studies of things you don’t know you know and that of course everybody wants all these answers right away we wanted months in but to do really adequate Studies on this kind of stuff you know so they really aren’t even that sure how transmissible is it like you know if I touch something and then you touch something or if you touch my coffee cup and then hand it to me like how transmissible is that and they don’t even really know they’re like they don’t know it could be dead once you touch the cup or it could not be and you know then if it touches my hand how long is it on my hand before I touch my mouth or I and then if just one little bit gets in my mouth or I is that enough or do I need like a larger you know dose like you gotta like golf right in my face it’s hard to believe that it it’s like man this thing must spread all over the place quickly easily right it must like live on every surface begin I’ve read all kinds of articles that are like look it doesn’t seem like the grocery store is a place you’re gonna probably catch it because everybody’s got a mask on and it doesn’t seem to live on boxes well I just I mean I think an arbitrary number let’s say it lives in the air for five minutes like I call for molecules out then they’re in the air or whatever well you know if we’re kind of far enough apart it might be fine but if we’re in a bar and we’re real close to each other or you’re right here and I’m right here even though I’m looking this way and the airs blow in that way or the vents are pulling at that you know I don’t know none of that [ _ ] like they don’t really how how aerosol eyes does it work you know it is like and how it transfers that way because they know they can do chemical attacks that way that’s what they do with chemical attacks is like you can use it in like an aerosol form and kill a whole roomful of people just blowing it in through an air duct when you talk about people how you’re kind of jealous that people can even Christianity in heaven and be comforted by that I am in that same way jealous of people who are like oh whatever happens is what’s supposed to happen it’s God’s will and I’ll just go out without a mask and hug people and life will be fine and dandy and I’m like I can’t live in that and I’m not saying it’s a bad idea like you’re probably very happy living like that and going back to what you’re used to and I’m sure it is comfortable but I just can’t I wish I could yeah I want to not be stuck at my house but I think that’s a similar idea that it comes back to with people with like health concerns you know to me people that don’t exercise or eat well or a [ _ ] McDonald’s every other day and they’re overweight and don’t take care of themselves I’m gonna enjoy my life now and not worry about it later and it’s like well I mean I get that you know but you have to I guess measure against your own values of do I want a longer healthier life or do I want a shorter I don’t say happier cuz I don’t know that you’re necessarily happier but more self yeah fun or maybe right and and those are the kind of values that we have to weigh out for ourselves you know and I don’t know that one’s better I may be eaten mcdonough I personally try to walk the middle line somewhere of like I’m not gonna be some crazy militant over the top never eat a piece of cake in my whole life person but I also know I got a watch if I eat too much sugar too much stuff and that’s that’s not good for me either so that’s interesting is it funner or is it instant gratification based life is that the McDonald’s life the instant gratification based life well I will intellectualize myself out of saying it’s funner because I will say things like my brain works better and I think better and I function and perform better when I’m eating healthier foods you know we know that when you ingest like say McDonald’s with a high sugar and all that stuff like your it affects your cognitive ability and it does hit those instant gratification receptor like using you know what I mean you do get those whatever endorsing relief but is that really fun or is that like artificially fun or you know so when you can spend a billion dollars on the right fat salt and you know seasoning content to make it it just perfect but yeah you’re right and that’s what I’m thinking it’s not so much that’s a funny life it’s the easier instantly gratifying life because salad tastes like some [ _ ] grass but I feel better later yeah it’s kind of like doing the dishes now sucks ass but I feel better later yeah that’s I don’t want to run around telling people that that’s the life dirt living there but it does seem that way I love it quite frequently in a lot of ways yeah better than oh we’re ready to get started this [ _ ] weird by the way yeah s I’m just not looking at it I’m gonna end up like this oh boy

so here’s a problem I am running into we’re getting to be so popular not that we’re getting enough interaction on a weekly basis that I can’t remember all the [ __ ] ways I interact with people to mention wall and so I people don’t get their feelings hurt but I don’t done pretty well up until now it’s only been like one or two messages a week yeah that’s like I probably talked like six or seven different people this week about it I can’t remember that’s pretty cool it is it’s just a lot like what happens when you get to that point where you can’t reply to every comment or every messenger that I deal well if you want I mean whatever you can forward them to me if I get the emails I can do emails and stuff most of it’s on social media noticing so that’s tricky Twitter I have tried over years and years I’ve been on Twitter at different times I’ve tried to follow it I don’t I don’t like it I mean I just the whole platform I don’t like the way look sis I don’t know why it’s just one of those things like I’m just not I don’t feel this I don’t like it I love Twitter I just feel like it’s the most authentic version of social media I feel like people it’s more popular in Facebook right I mean at least what I think think so no but it just it’s got the most authentic roots of things being able to go like viral all by themselves without paying for Facebook and Instagram are completely based around hey your post reached you know 80 people but if you’d like to reach a thousand give us $10 yeah doesn’t seem very fair and so it kind of irks me in that way ya know people do like the Facebook page apparently it’s

Facebook nothing works right all right

still warming here it had a quitter

we’re sucks and beef didn’t click just forget it but it’s like when I was recording and we would take that little break but I say hey are you ready then we take that pause

what’s it recording through what after

got some sort of built-in app in the criminal record against Austin yeah like the default camera on your phone right nothing fancy oh you know what I’m glad you said that without me I’m one of them that recording Apple my phone I’m going to use too just in case for some reason this doesn’t good right so what is it like 10 10 20 start that way I can at least keep track of a where two cuts are in the breaks let me start that recording app easy voice recorder

should I put on a time or two so we didn’t know long we go uh couldn’t hurt you wanted to cuz what the anchor does 30 minutes was it yeah it was it does 30 minutes at a time man we can only record another 839 hours on this at Billy

that’s four episodes hey welcome back to recovery sort of Jason I’m a guy in recovery I’m Billy I’m a person in long-term recovery every time I go to say that I feel like I’m getting ready to say I’m an addict named Jason I don’t know if we’re avoiding saying that or I just don’t I have no idea yeah well and the whole language of addict was all a stigma thing that’s why they got person in recovery is way more empowering than saying I am an addict an addict makes it seem like you know you’re you’re still a less than person I guess was the idea so in recovery messaging that’s why we use person and recovery yeah and Social Work profession all of our stuff is based around person-centered language and so people are person first they’re not they’re diagnosis right they’re not a depressed person they’re a person with depression they’re person who deals with depression it’s just a minor facet of what their life is not their entire you know personality so they would say a person with substance use disorder or something like that a person with addiction not an addict but it’s just become so comfortable to say I have an addict and I’m not really bothered by that but I imagine I wouldn’t really go in the grocery store and say that Yeah right you know my wife wouldn’t introduce me to like her high school classmates and I think hey I have an addict named Jason yeah and it’s like that at my job I mean most people know that I don’t drink or do any kind of drugs they know I’ve had a history with that stuff cuz I’ll joke about it and make jokes about it and been in jail and stuff like that but I’d say I wouldn’t say yeah I’m an addict and I go to these 12-step meetings like that seems a little weird that’s funny so we had some uh we had a great conversation last week with Matt we talked about you know the all paths recovery meeting that goes on near us and how that’s probably a hugely beneficial thing and something that may be way more areas need to look at doing it’s so crazy to me sometimes to think about how Cecil County where we are based it seems like the least likely place in the world to have progressive thinking you know recovery models and yet here we are with your wife spearheading like you know voices of hope and and the county and others included right not just your wife there’s been a lot of people into this over the years and I’m like I don’t even see this kind of forward [ _ ] when I was in Baltimore so much and maybe because it’s bigger and bigger places are doing it like maybe the United Way is handling it and so it’s not such a grassroots movement and so they can’t do such wild endeavors they have to kind of stay within the boundaries of what’s allowed because they’re larger corporations um I think it’s a couple things knowing kind of what I know in some of the background of things that my wife does one of the big things was our overdose rate here in Cecil County was so high because we’re right on this 95 corridor what we saw you know five or so years ago maybe a little longer was that in the state of Maryland Cecil County ranked second behind Baltimore for overdose deaths you know and you would think Cecil County you know how do we rank so high and overdose deaths and the the scourge of the opioid epidemic seemed to really hit this community pretty bad and so that created a lot of momentum I guess for people to want to do something there are organizations in Baltimore that are doing this kind of work but like say I think because that areas is so big there’s so many people doing so many different things it’s easy to kind of get lost in the shuffle and we don’t have large organizations in this area stepping up to handle any of those services we don’t have you know helping up mission or you know uh the Red Cross services or any other organizations other than our local health department which to be honest has been quite inadequate you know addressing the issue and so you know I think some of these actions are happening in other areas but what tends to happen in other areas like Baltimore is that bigger fish come in gobble up a bigger bigger chunk of the money and then roll that into all these other things that they’re doing and it takes those resources away from the grassroots movements kind of like how up here they had given a large you know bit of funding to a more grassroots organization to do the 24 hour crisis center and then the larger you know governmental Health Department set now we’re gonna take that funding and then provided next to zero 24-hour services and their 24-hour services to wake up the middle of the night answer the phone and tell you they’ll get do on Tuesday like yeah so not much different honestly than the the corporations gobbling up the funding yeah very similar and and that’s a problem like that that people are frustrated with I think in government in general um we see this like the bureaucracy it churns so slowly and if you look historically if you read some historians about like our bureaucratic system like it’s supposed to move slow it’s supposed to be arduous and and debate it out and and these are supposed to be well-thought ideas we are not supposed to be like our government is not designed to be like quickly responsive to crisises those are things that communities are supposed to address those are things that you know people outside of the government are supposed to be handling but because we have such a big bureaucracy they control all the money they want to have their hand in the cookie jar and take all the funding and and what you see is the money that comes down the federal government goes to the state government who then gives it to the county government and the idea should be that money should come from the federal government or the state government out into community organizations I mean we hear repeatedly over and over again how you’ll see small churches or small religious organizations or small you know other community-based organizations that do way better at problems of homelessness addiction treatment all that stuff but yet they won’t get any funding from a state or federal government because they’ll say well we want complete oversight of your program you can’t do these things that you’re doing you got to do it this way that we outline and then when you look at what they want you to do it’s like well no wonder your [ _ ] way doesn’t work look how stupid it is you got half of our services wrapped up in recording and and polls and and things that really aren’t getting that money to the people back when we have that epidemic here we saw the governor came to Maryland was Hogan came to Maryland we’re gonna throw money at the problem we’re gonna create this governor’s task force and you know Cecil County oh yeah we’re gonna come up with a I forget what they called it the mayor’s task force or whatever they came up with another round table discussion type [ _ ] that they meet once a quarter to discuss what they’re all gonna do about the problem none of them are people that are actively involved in recovery none of them are people that are actively connected to me they’re all politicians and and bigwigs in the county they get together and I hate to say it this way but like circle-jerk each other about what they’re doing about the drug problem you spend all this money and they have nothing to show for it yeah I found it incredibly interesting I met my wife just north of Baltimore in that area but I’m from Baltimore I’ve been there my life she’s from the the Cecil County area and so I would talk about the drug problem in Baltimore and how it related to my life and all that and she would say yeah Cecil counties got a lot of drug issues too and I’m like [ _ ] hell like what are you talking about are you heard of this County first off where the [ _ ] are you why do you have a drug problem like you know you’re out in the boonies and I just couldn’t understand because I thought cities were where drug problems were and she explained it that out in a County such as Cecil County one there’s nothing else to [ _ ] do right there’s not like all the entertainment things that the city might have but then beyond that Cecil County is basically the halfway point between Baltimore and Philadelphia and so when people were meeting for drug deals they met here and there was lots of drugs in the county because of that it was all centered around this like centralized location and I was like huh that’s an interesting concept that I’ve never thought of yeah and and being a person that used in this area like it’s really easy to drive you know 40 minutes up to Philly and you know you have a nice place to get heroin you drive up right up 95 hop off and exit go to blocks you’re then you’re back on 95 and down the road and the whole trip you know hour and a half hour if you’re really flying you know and you’re you know getting cheap drugs you know yeah Marilyn for being such a small state does have that very unfortunate location to be you know DC Baltimore Philly all close by to almost you know the largest portion of where the population is in our state and just so much of that drug problem exists in those type of areas that that are localized I’m sure it exists everywhere I’m sure it exists out in Cumberland where there isn’t any you know large town nearby but it’s just I guess maybe just because sheer population size it’s a little different and there are some other issues it’s not just a convenience I can’t forget this moment forget upset if I didn’t bring up some of this so there are a lot of social issues here too that lead to high addiction rates we have high domestic violence I mean we’re top we’re top five of the state you know as far as like counties and stuff in like domestic abuse divorce rates um you know child neglect and abandonment like all these think poverty you know there’s like a bunch of those social characteristics that we lead in as well but it’s basically trauma you know there’s a lot of trauma that goes on in this little rural community that leads to addiction so you have the trauma piece coupled with the convenience of cheap drugs you know that just make the problem that much worse I’m gonna invent an entirely new theory right now there’s all these different theories of trauma and I’m not trying to say any of them are wrong they’re probably all very accurate but I think the trauma in Cecil County is very much a we’re in 2020 but people are still living in 1950 I think that is the [ _ ] drama right we’re still we’re trying to make America great again in a way that really is wasn’t that great to begin with but it’s just what we’re familiar with and so we’re trying to go back to that childhood version of what we grew up with and how we think that works better and I think when you’re living out of out of time out of touch with the time that the times are in right like I think that creates trauma when you’re raising your children in in a 1950s style but it’s 70 [ _ ] years later like we’re supposed to grow and change we’re not supposed to stay the same right right and so I don’t know maybe I’m just out of my [ _ ] mind but that sounds like a good way does it cause trauma is to raise people way differently than we’ve learned is not really good for them anymore but we’re gonna wave a [ _ ] off yeah this is not anywhere we’re supposed to be the point we were getting that they’re not really the point we were getting that’s what we were supposed to get at was that I think a lot of people do have questions about you know m-80s or medical cannabis and how that looks for people in recovery or if you can be in recovery and do those things and I think in a lot of Minds the jury is out or it’s already convicted you that you’re [ _ ] getting high not really in recovery and I hope that last week’s episode I know it definitely continued to open my mind to at least have some ideas of maybe I don’t have all the answers and I need to look a little more at this and I’ve heard that sentiment from some other people too that like it was just nice to combat the information that they thought they were sold on in their head right they they now have something else to say oh maybe I don’t know what I’m you know maybe I’m not so sure what I thought I was sure of and so that’s what I’m really hoping came out of last week is that people can just take a moment to sit back and think that maybe it’s a little different out there and that these things could be useful and and people can still pursue you know being better in a different way yeah exactly so we had some messages this week just to cover before we get to our main topic which is going to be something about relationships to some former extent and we again thank Caroline for that idea we had kind of had an idea of how to do it but she had messaged us a few weeks back and had some really good points about some ways to come at that I don’t think we’re gonna cover all of them today especially probably not the ones you’ve really hoped we would cover but we’re gonna cover a couple of aspects she made that I think we can cover knowledgeably I hope but before we get to that so Allie messaged us on our Facebook page and asked us who does our theme song because she couldn’t find that anywhere and the reason I bring it up is because I keep meaning to mention every day to give them a plug since they allow us to use their song that is the [ _ ] sweet sounds of jimmies chicken shack you know a local ish band from the 90s that kind of got some national exposure with that song and maybe a couple others but yeah Jimmy’s Chicken Shack that song particularly is called high which seems very appropriate for our our podcast here but they have to me I I love a lot of their music I still listen to them probably stuck in the 90s but that’s a little my own [ _ ] but yeah so that’s who they are if anybody is curious I will I hope somebody asked me again in like three weeks so I can continue to remember to keep saying that because they’re great another thing we had gotten this week our buddy sobriety Matt on Twitter had some remarks about our episode and he really kind remarks he said he’d listened he was learning about drug rehabilitation and it really challenged his preconceived ideas about total abstinence and what is considered total abstinence and he said he was still you know thinking through his thoughts about it interesting like he’s a lot of people we interact with too or not so much wouldn’t consider themselves addicts they would talk more about being sober or alcoholics and so I honestly when we did the episode about like m-80s and stuff I had never even really considered what it would be like for an alcoholic to listen to that I don’t know why I think most of our topics are universal and so I just didn’t even consider that that one might not be yeah I guess it wasn’t so much an abuse right is that the same yes there are they still use in there ty no it was years back yeah I thought that vivitrol shot was basically like the same thing yeah I don’t know anyway he did want to point out though and I wanted to bring up that he was very pleased that you brought up some of the controversy around antidepressant medication in recovery programs and that hit close to home for him and he’s seen a lot of you know times when people said things about that in recovery meetings about how people can’t be on it and told him to get off of it and I think we’ve mentioned before we’ve kind of it seems like we’re slightly moving away from that direction and we need to emphasize that as much as possible like if you’re dealing with a medical professional of any sort that has you on mental health medication [ _ ] what anybody in a 12-step meeting about it alright I will vouch for that [ _ ] that yeah or just cuss of one idiot or a couple of idiots have an opinion don’t let that sway you know put your decision and when we say idiots like I still love you I will hug you I hope you come around to understanding that that’s not our job to you know tell people about their mental health medication and and I don’t mean [ _ ] you like I hate you you should leave the meeting I just I mean you know I don’t believe in that information that you’re giving them and don’t kill somebody and I say it in the context that I was once very much one of those idiots and held a lot of those beliefs myself I don’t know that I actively ever said that to anyone’s face but it was very much an opinion that I had and I’m sure said to other people maybe people that I sponsored you know so at a time and I was an idiot so I say that putting myself in that category not understanding the the harm not being a person that had a lot of knowledge or experience with mental illness I didn’t grow up with it in my family I didn’t see it right in front of me so you know here I was having an opinion about something I knew little to nothing about and so once I did a little research tittle have educated myself a little bit I realized how dangerous it is to have those types of opinions yeah I can’t exclude myself since you already included yourself I have had those kind of opinions myself I don’t know if I’ve ever been like hardcore 1,000% sure of it but I’ve definitely had some opinions in my head about like I don’t know if that’s really clean there’s things like that again I don’t know if I said it to anybody either I really hope not I very well could have because I’ve said a whole lot of yeah but yeah definitely if that’s where you’re at today don’t feel shamed about whatever mental health medication that you know the professionals decide you need to take I have taken an antidepressant I don’t talk about it that much but I don’t mind talking about it it [ _ ] changed my goddamn life like I can’t even get if my life was a one that made it a nine and a half it was incredible the difference it made in my life and I have found that just for today I don’t need it but if I would ever decide that I needed it again I know it works and I know it was very successful and has given me the ability to be such a better father such a better human that [ _ ] [ _ ] all that stuff I will definitely take it again and and suggest people listen to the professionals to move on our Instagram buddy latts United which I think has something to do with SLA a sex and love addicts anonymous I’m still trying to figure out that the name though if like like slats is a play on words to be like [ _ ] I don’t know if it is I love it I love it for sure but and I’m only mentioning them because they said they loved my memes I’m very happy with someone acknowledged because I’ve put a lot of time and effort into coming up with like seven memes I just well I got a do a better job and look it I see a few of them I’ve been avoiding Facebook a lot lately partially because I’m sick of it you know the political and all the you know whatever drives me nuts and then partially because I’ve just been really busy at work and so funny enough before this episode I pulled up the web page and started going through and like I was cracking up cuz I miss a lot of those I got to do a better job at looking at it so well we didn’t have the Facebook thing and so I’ve been putting these on Instagram since I don’t know November December whenever I created that and so now I post I do my new ones for the week and they go on Instagram and then I’ll put a new one on the Facebook in the morning and then an older one like a couple hours later such I’ve been doing two a day but I don’t know it’s it’s why I stole mine the other day this guy Ryan and he’s a buddy of mine but he doesn’t know like meme etiquette like when you steal somebody’s me and we’re supposed to give them the credit in the comment or just share it from their page and he just just stole that [ _ ] and I’m like damn it’s nice oh but yeah so thank you so much slats United for acknowledging my memes there’s a lot of work that goes in behind the scenes and then I read them and realize I got a typo and got to recreate them and then I [ _ ] read them and don’t like them and want to say in a different way and then I read them after I’ve made them and think ah it’s kind of harsh to people who are ruined m-80s I probably shouldn’t say that [ _ ] it’s a lot of [ _ ] that goes into that so I appreciate the acknowledged and another message we got was from Stephanie and this was an interesting message it’s actually it wasn’t from this past week I’m not sure maybe it was maybe it was from this past week but she talked about being a nanny and precedent oh yeah okay so she her point was about it being okay and it was refreshing to hear that the guy talking about Matt was basically saying come one come all let’s just try to be the best version of ourselves and support one another on that journey I think that what one person can take while in recovery is based on each person’s individual level of unmanageability and she gave an example that if she was prescribed like benzodiazepines for her anxiety and took it according to doctor’s orders but then the person next to her in the meeting might have a history of xanax abuse and so maybe they shouldn’t have been xoda as peens for their anxiety and I thought this was an interesting concept right and I liked it because she won’t want to say the more she thinks about it’s not our place to judge or decide what recovery looks like for anyone but how much more complex would it make it if

not that there was rules to the recovery program right but just if she’s saying hey each person’s look different and so we could walk into an NA meeting or or a meeting in general and the guy next to me you know or the guy across from me maybe Billy can smoke weed right maybe he needs medical cannabis for his anxiety and it seriously helps him and doesn’t affect his desire to want to go you know shoot heroin maybe that works for you but every time I’ve smoked weed in my life I get paranoid decide I want to smoke crack right right like how would it be more difficult in that meeting for me to stay clean because I just feel like and I love the point she makes that yeah we all do have our own limitations and abilities and I respect that but if I went to a meeting where I’m a guy who is struggling to stay clean and I sit next to Billy who’s clean and in recovery according to him right and I’m not knocking that he’s not but I see him doing something that I wish I was able to do and so I’m constantly gonna be like whoa it’s kind of like when I saw people using when I was getting cleaner and hey I was like what God and how come they can go out and use that I can’t look they’re like [ _ ] sucked at her they were living under a [ _ ] bridge they were on a corner you know begging for money and yet I was still jealous I was jealous that they could you know quote-unquote could use and I couldn’t and the fact was they weren’t really being successful with it I kind of went out and stood on the corner and slept under the bridge like I was choosing not to because it wasn’t working for me but there was still that bit of jealousy and so just from her statement and me really made me wonder maybe that’s why na doesn’t have that that mentality of everybody can kind of do what works for them because it’s going to be triggering for the people around them not to say that it’s a bad concept for a meeting idea but maybe that’s why it doesn’t work for na yeah and I I mean I was thinking exactly that like that her point is why it’s important that we focus I think on abstinence based recovery in Narcotics Anonymous you know like in an Alcoholics Anonymous like they have a specific you know sort of I’m going to call criteria or whatever for how they outline their program and what those expectations are and it’s that common common denominator of alcohol and Alcoholics Anonymous or drugs and Narcotics Anonymous you know the abstinence of those things that helps identification you know that helps a new person come in feel safe feel like they belong you know and identify with that process because if they can identify the problem and identify the issues then they can also hopefully identify with the solution if you go somewhere where it’s a little more vague and a little more you know somebody’s doing one thing and somebody’s doing the other I could get a little harder to feel out you know well and I think it comes down to like what’s what’s doing more benefit or what doing more harm and I don’t have the answer I don’t know this right but I know na like catches some flak over hey you have this opinion of total abstinence and you kind of exclude quite a bit of people that you know are trying to do recovery and that’s kind of shitty of you and I get that right but would attempting to include those people actually do more damage by more people being in a meeting sitting next to someone who you know is okay on suboxone but the person ends up getting jealous and doing suboxone and they really that’s not good for their life would it do more damage than good right I’m not describing it well I’m even trying to like picture what I’m saying in my head and like that just sounds [ _ ] confusing but I don’t know right I don’t have that answer and I think it’s a really tough place but I think what Matt’s doing kind of is probably the best thing we got for right now like let’s just start another [ _ ] program or a fellowship or meeting place for people to reach out on that journey when they’re doing in a different way right and let’s hopefully in in na accept that and and like nurture it and love it and work with it and push people to that program that maybe don’t quite fit in with the program we’re working let’s not like rage against it like oh them [ _ ] over there aren’t really doing anything like let’s support it and nurture almost God I almost said something I definitely do not want to say I’ll tell you about it later yeah and I mean that’s the whole thing and I think that’s a general life skill whether you’re a person that’s in a 12-step program or not a 12-step program or just a counselor or social worker or person that deals with people you know as a family member of someone in addiction like it’s so important that we just encourage people to keep moving forward to keep taking positive steps to not cast judgements you know on them or or put them down because you don’t necessarily agree with what path they’re on but just to try to encourage them to take the steps forward you know what I mean like and maybe again someone you know in a position of you know looking at from a harm-reduction perspective like maybe someone who’s out shooting on the streets is going to do better as they start getting into like a maintenance program and and if you’re a family member or loved one or somebody who’s involved with that person you know just try to hold off a little bit on criticizing and judging those people and encourage them to keep moving forward you know that maybe that’s a stepping stone for them in the right direction and within a year or two they’ll get to abstinence you know but let’s encourage them to keep moving forward yeah if nothing else the world today could use much more encouragement and understanding and and love than it could whatever the [ _ ] it is we’re doing because whatever we’re doing Oakley you’re not working right I don’t know that so we’re at a good spot we’re gonna talk about relationships we’re close enough to the point we might as well just stop and do our voices ad and then we’ll come back and start the relationships topic so be right back

I’ll say it later pig anyone out there to the back say it out there

now I said I was gonna be there shits blowing I don’t know not cold at all yeah very cold about the system they’re like where are their returns like maybe I don’t know where they’re these all look like blowing out these aren’t blowing at law which occasionally you hear then kick on yeah but that’s not it’s not cold even whatever

you think it would have a return for this side

definitely eight where’s it going this [ _ ] well they don’t design it they just think you just throw leads into places and that’ll make it work that’s what they did at my house is ransom leads over to the addition and now it doesn’t ever [ _ ] cool it’s always hot as hell in there gotta leave the door open all the time and then even then it still it’s ten degrees hotter because you know the way the air conditioner works is removes the humidity in hot air so you gotta have that return to pool the hot air out if you just pump cold air into a hot humid room it doesn’t I mean it does a little bit but not much that’s what’s happening in our bedroom so we’re gonna end up having to get I mean there are other things you could do but I think what we’re gonna end up doing is putting like a little like when there’s mini splits which is like like a thing that just goes on the wall and just does that one room and that way you don’t have to run the ductwork or nothing and then I’ll just disconnect the ductwork that they ran off the main of the rest of the house cuz it’s just Robin air from there and then that also probably makes the unit undersized too cool all that area because it wasn’t originally set up to cool another you know whatever that is 150 square feet or whatever that room is 25 by 12 so it’s not made to cool all that space too they just run the fence over there it’s good I moved into a house that was a rehab during all that boom back in like 2007 and it was a [ _ ] disaster and all the cruddy [ _ ] they did electricity plumbing all of it was just [ _ ] a joke structure of the [ _ ] basement it was like falling apart large pieces of concrete falling out people just do anything for a dollar man give a [ _ ] that’s what he look I just think it’s easy is it easy you just you know just concrete you just throw it up there it’s good and some [ _ ] together stack some blocks on each other all right we’re back so we’re gonna get into relationships I did want to mention and we haven’t mentioned this yet we are back in studio in person yeah I guess studio is not really the right word we’re just in a room talking one of the cool things we learned or at least that I learned about this for me doing it remotely was that I do like the video option that we record the video and just throw that on YouTube and so we’re gonna try to stick with that it’s a little awkward set up I feel like my shorts are too short right now we’re being recorded from the side it’s strange I’m usually like you know neck up or whatever shoulders up and this is I do feel like my whole body’s exposed I think I need to wear more clothes or hold up I’m trying to not look at the camera cuz I feel like that’ll make me feel weird if I start looking at it so I’m trying to not look I’m just trying to focus over here so it’ll probably get the side of my face the whole time I just get this feeling like at some point we need to get more comfortable with it and then we’ll say something that breaks like that fourth wall they talk about a book just look at the Cameron stared at I don’t know but yeah we are back in person it’s a little a little strange for me I know you this is like your life you go to work and [ _ ] I said in my house don’t move so this is very weird makes it harder to explain to my daughter’s why they can’t go see their friends because you can a little different I find myself to be more responsible than you are but it’s tricky anyway glad to be back in person it’s nice to see a little bit yeah hopefully I don’t catch coronavirus because of it but so we want to get into relationships so Caroline made a [ _ ] ton of great points in her message about you know talking about relationships we had kind of had the concept on our list of topic ideas which we have like 364 of but I think when Caroline messaged about it she laid it out a little better and get down into a lot of different ways right she talked about being married to another person that is also in recovery she talked about the being married to somebody who’s not so much in recovery she talked about you know what it’s like later on like a lot of our relationship advices for the person in their first year right the relationship advice you hate don’t get into a relationship for a year but we don’t talk about hey what’s it like when you have 5 8 10 15 years clean sober and you you know are trying to date like what does that look like for that individual and where do you meet people and how do you not meet one of us that just doesn’t know they’re one of us yet and so it’s a lot of great ideas in there I don’t think we’ll cover them all today we we talked the other day about how to cover all those responsibly and include some other input in that because you and I have not had the experience of having 5 8 10 or 12 years and trying to date like that’s not an experience we necessarily have so what we can talk about and what I think we’re gonna focus on mostly today is you are married to another person in recovery and I am married to a person not in recovery and so I think we do have at least a little bit to say about those types of relationships and maybe how they differ how they’re the same how you know I think a lot of the argument is do I date someone in recovery or not in recovery which is better for me and so I kind of feel like we can address that maybe yeah well and I want to throw out one disclaimer so I don’t disagree with the information that we give to a lot of newcomers that they should stay out of relationships and that they should it’s all great information it just doesn’t seem practical and it doesn’t seem like what happens most of the time you know as well as I do the person that doesn’t get in a relationship in the first year of recovery that’s like an anomaly like your network yeah I mean that person exists they’re out there and there’s occasionally so many really sticks to it and again it’s great if you can do that great stay out of a relationship work on yourself focus on your step work focus on you know self-improvement you’ll find the qualities of your relationships will probably go up you’ll find there are extreme benefits to that it just doesn’t seem realistic like at least it doesn’t seem like what’s really happening in recovery that I see in this area so if it really exists maybe it’s not a unicorn maybe it’s like a narwhal yeah not very common right yeah I don’t know I I don’t know it’s tricky information I don’t think there’s any you know one size fits all I don’t think there’s right or wrong I do think relationships can lead to painful areas which is the normal reason we justify saying that relationships can be painful and we don’t want to send you back out before you’re ready to deal with emotions my personal take on it is that people tend to get in relationships for interesting reasons and I think a lot of it is like sex and love addiction personally I think we get rid of the drug and relationships [ _ ] feel good they you know can make us feel as euphoric or take us to a time of ease and comfort just the same way our drug of choice good right just the same way that alcohol made us feel at ease so can have in a pretty lady or a handsome fella on your arm or you know at your side watching a movie with you every night or whatever it is and so I caution that we don’t really know ourselves early on before we do a whole lot of the steps and when we do these relationships sometimes we’re just substituting sometimes we’re substituting does that mean that I think it’s a terrible idea some people aren’t gonna stay clean unless they substitute for a time until they can get to a time when they don’t need the substitute some people would argue that we’re always in some form of substitution right like we’re always putting something there it might be something a little healthier right so I don’t have those kind of answers Billie yeah and I mean I’ve heard my wife say to people like look as long as you don’t use don’t worry about the rest of it it’ll get better just don’t use that starts the and whatever keep you know if you got to go out and use some guys attention to help you get through that’s okay for now you know just yeah it’s pretty harsh but you know it’s it’s best that you don’t use that’s you know the number one thing and then you keep moving forward hopefully you work on yourself enough to change and get better and and whatever but yeah like say I think I think that attraction to other people does keep some people around here does beep keep people connected I know like in my case I can say my relationship at times has probably kept me more connected to recovery than I otherwise would have been there were points in my life where you know if I didn’t have a spouse that was like my wife is is I don’t want you want to call it like very enthusiastic about the program she’s always been very connected and it’s never really strayed very far away like has always had regular meeting attendance always had a sponsor you know always always been heavily connected there are times that I haven’t been and that relationship has sort of held me accountable like I feel like man she’s gonna start giving me [ _ ] like if I just stopped going in my home group every week she’s definitely gonna not you know she’s not gonna cosign that kind of [ _ ] she will ask me things about you know my relationship with my sponsor what I’m doing with my home group how things are going with staff you know so that is something that uh is a part of our relationship that has kept me connected at times when I probably would have drifted away so I want to take that information and award like 10 bonus points to being in a relationship with somebody in recovery because that’s not something I guess it is something you could get from somebody outside of recovery but looking at like the people I surround myself with probably not something even if they said it they wouldn’t have the information to back it up to forcefully say it right like they could say hey did you for a couple weeks but then I’m gonna justify or live in denial and that’s where it stops like we’re not gonna continue to pursue it so I say oh [ _ ] well being with somebody in recovery that’s helpful like you just showed a helpful way that I think that beats being with somebody not in recovery but I’m wondering if that could also work the other way where your partner gets disinterested in recovery and it becomes easier for you both to just be disinterested together yeah I’m sure it could I mean I’m I’m definitely sure that could happen I’ve seen it happen with friends and stuff and then I have friends that you know they both started out in recovery and now one of them doesn’t really go anymore and the other one still does so that’s funny yeah that’s weird that seems even more weird than both of you doing the same thing I just want to interview those couple just because that’s [ _ ] weird and I don’t understand it yeah so interestingly just a little quick background about me we’re gonna [ _ ] get ourselves in trouble over this I don’t know I’m talking about our wives that’s like a death sentence for me anyway I was in recovery I got really close to 18 months I was like eight days shy of 18 months and during that time I dated a woman in recovery and I said this is the only way to go you got a date somebody in recovery you guys go do the same things you can hit meetings together you take vacations which are conventions like this is this is the only way to be I can’t date some normal person that’s [ _ ] weird right and then what happened was do you know she ended up taking she had to get pain meds for something or another she was using them not correctly and I didn’t even know it one day she approached me about getting high together like randomly out of nowhere and it was easier for me to say yes to that because I didn’t like I didn’t want to relapse alone but I also didn’t want to be without her right and so it was like in two different ways it made it very easy for her and I to go get drugs together and that led to misery and pain obviously during the relapse it was awful and so when I came back to the program to try this again I said I’m definitely not [ _ ] dating anybody in recovery anymore and so I had a little taste like it was a pretty I know it was only eighteen months but it was a pretty serious relationship we had actually dated before that while we were both using too so this was like a continuation of that but I had a little taste of kind of both sides of that and I don’t know I can’t say that I found one to be any better or worse than the other personally yeah well I mean some of the things like even though we’re addicts like relationships of any kind are difficult anyway like romantic relationships no matter where you met your spouse or you know I mean the divorce rates what fifty percent in this country and and just staying in a long-term committed relationship is difficult and then I think the fact that we’re addicts on top of that adds a whole nother layer of difficulty because one we tend to be very self-centered self-serving people it’s not at least in my nature to put the needs of my partner first it’s usually you know my first instinct on most things is getting what I want getting my needs met having someone that encourages and supports and builds me up you know and I’m not it’s it’s much harder for me to look at what I’m giving in a relationship rather than what I’m getting on top of the fact that you know drugs are always there telling me there’s a better way you know hey come over here and join the dark side and get high and life so much more fun and exciting and better when you’re getting high so so you know all those things you know make relationships difficult when I can say my only relationship experience with non addicts or not people in recovery where when I was using I never got in a heavy relationship with anyone that used like I used I always got involved with girls that didn’t use like I used and those relationships never lasted a whole long time because I wasn’t very good at or anything it was there were relationships of convenience um but I didn’t trust anybody that used or did the things that I did because I was out cheating and lying and getting high and running around and doing whatever I wanted all the time and I had no real I don’t say I don’t have emotional investment in those relationships I thought that I loved a couple of those people but I was incapable of really being good in relationships at all because they weren’t built on anything they weren’t built on trust and honesty and commitment it was they were almost like you said they were just convenience and how it made me feel about myself and some self self assurance um so you bring up an interesting point and this is why I say that a lot of us and and I think this is an egotistical thing for me to say honestly but I just assume everybody else feels and acts like I do in response to life like I do relationships for me felt [ _ ] great you know I called it love for a long time and I don’t know that I believe that anymore but that whole new relationship novelty butterflies in my stomach feel like I can’t live without this person wanna you know meet him on Monday and for whatever reason don’t want to leave them until Friday like I can’t stand to be away from him for more than three minutes that’s like oh my god they’re pissing in the bathroom I gotta like stand right outside the door and just wish they were out here with me like I don’t know if everybody even feels that [ _ ] but that’s how I felt that was so powerful and overwhelming and euphoric in the early parts of relationships that I thought that was love I immediately dropped all male friends that I ever hung out with because I had to spend all my time with this person and that just became my life and it’s not sustainable right it’s not built on trust and commitment and any of these other things or the spiritual principle of love as I understand it today which is showing up and being kind and compassionate and loving actions towards another person even when I don’t feel like it right that’s what I look at his love today so it wasn’t built on any of that it was built this [ _ ] feels great and is definitely filling up the void right this is like making me feel super validated I’m feeling awesome I’m floating on air and this is kind of why I want to get somebody from SLA a like I’m hoping we’re exploring these other programs I really want to get a SLA a sex and love addicts anonymous individual on here to explore this because I think a lot of our members that maybe have never thought about this before might identify and might want to seek out some help in that area because it’s truly a lot of freedom on the other side of that but the whole so sex and love addicts is very similar to the codependent idea right the idea that we like can’t live without these other people and put up with behaviors that aren’t our treatment that isn’t okay just to you know continue this kind of relationship even if it’s just got negative consequences I see you over there like dying too but it’s all I’ll stop first that’s okay yeah coz there’s two things I wanted to say and I didn’t want to lose either of them one there’s a ton of literature out there you can go read on this new relationship thing is called the infatuation phase know of a relationship it’s got a name there’s scientific studies on exactly what you’re talking about and what you described is what they describe is from a scientific standpoint yes we literally lose our minds we begin to ignore like warning signs of this person we only see like the best possible things you know and and we interpret all that data you know as like oh this is the one this is the person for me we we love each other so much and then I lasted I read and it’s been a couple years they talk about it in there’s a book called the five love languages that talks about it some but you can go on and look it up other places too it’s just called the infatuation phase that usually lasts about two years which shockingly enough I think if you go back and look at the average length of marriages and stuff it’s like two years it was right about the same time and the the correlation that they were trying to make is like look you know we’re all in this joyful Bliss of the infatuation phase in these relationships we’ve run out and get married and then about two years in we start to see all their real human characteristics or start to notice and identify these flaws and then it’s like what the [ _ ] did I do and it is almost like a drug like we are caught up in the euphoria of that new relationship that we are living in denial of what’s really going on right and then unfortunately most of us get married so not myself but you know most people get married so quickly that you know you’re you’ve done made a decision while you’re still in the infatuation phase the other thing I was gonna say about that is the relationship isn’t gonna bring out characteristics you don’t already have so if you’re not a person who’s trustful and honest and committed and loyal and you know like if you don’t have those qualities coming into that relationship you’re not just gonna grow them out of that relationship more than likely what’s gonna happen is you’re your real nature is gonna come out and your dishonesty and and you know your lack of commitment and your you know self-centeredness all those things are gonna come out so sort of circle back to the advice we give people early in recovery that’s why it’s hard to be good at relationships early in recovery because we don’t most of us don’t come in with those skills you know we don’t come in with the skills of honesty and commitment and Trust and loyalty and all that you know so if we come in and get right into a relationship that relationship isn’t going to bolster those things in us what bolsters those things in me is step work and recovery and growing you know learning about myself and growing and learning about my character defects and learning what things you know I’m insecure about and then once I’ve developed those skills I can bring them into a relationship yeah everything you said definitely you talk about the infatuation stage I think because it is for an addict like me for a guy who struggles with obsession and compulsion and instant gratification and self-centeredness and wanting to feel good now that infatuation stage a much more shortened [ _ ] that two years it’s like three usually with six months tops and then what my life is based around is when this hit stops working go get another hit right when this when this alcohol stops working go get another you know a bottle of something and so my solution is never like hey well maybe now it’s time to work on myself and address my problems now that this relationship isn’t making me have an escape anymore it’s [ _ ] this [ _ ] I’m gonna go find another one right like it’s just I’ll move on to the next one to feel good again and I’m not saying there’s nothing wrong with that maybe that’s how you want to live the rest your life maybe you want a new girl every year and a half and you want to redo all your finances and redo where your living situation and redo or you don’t even move them in or get tied into finances maybe you just date a new girl every year and a half for the rest of your life nothing wrong with that I guess I don’t know I’m sure people are getting hurt but whatever like it that’s a choice it’s just not the choice I’m looking for right now that I’ve done some work in that area I just think it’s really it’s fascinating how we can be I definitely was blind to this concept for so long I was just dating the same girl with different color hair and different color eyes book the same person that kept bringing me a fix over and over again and just thinking the answer was the next one the answer will be the next one the answer will be the next one no the answer is inside right and so I just think that’s interesting we look at relationships as a solution or a complement to us or somebody to make us whole and if I go into a relationship as a half I ain’t getting hold right I’m still gonna be a half and so it’s just really I don’t know I think we might give you getting a little off in left field about what you know the whole message of this they’re like maybe does it make more sense to be with someone in recovery or out and of course obviously spoiler alert the answer is going to be there’s no [ _ ] right answer with that well and one other thing I don’t know how this exactly ties in but it keeps coming up in my head so I’m just gonna say it the other thing with any like relationships is it’s almost like parenting like I’m ik what I saw in my upbringing growing up whether I thought it was good or bad doesn’t matter that’s just what I think a marriage in a relationship is supposed to look like like that’s what I saw that’s what I witnessed so that’s what I sort of think it’s supposed to be um in my case I was incredibly lucky I had people that stayed married up until my mom passed you know they were married 47 years as far as I know there was no infidelity abuse you know definitely nothing we ever saw outwardly I mean my parents had issues you know they had fought a couple times I know at one point they had talked about possibly separating in divorce I don’t know really what the issues were at the time I was 11 12 years old but they worked through it they stayed together they were good people they treated each other well you know so I luckily had some examples of what a good relationship was when I got clean so I think even when I was using I knew what uh what it I thought it was supposed to be so when I didn’t see that I was like oh this is bad you know this isn’t [ _ ] right like this isn’t the way this is supposed to be and so I think that helped me it you know in my relationship now yeah no I think you’re right I do think we do a lot of unconscious things I was trying to apply that to my life like my parents stayed together and I don’t think there was infidelity but that apparently as my entire [ _ ] life was that being you know cheating oh my my girlfriends and stuff and so I don’t know if maybe just it wasn’t so much that I was mimicking what I saw in their relationship I was just mimicking whatever covered up the [ _ ] trauma like my father used food obviously right I used sex and acceptance from women and validation and you know the million jokes we can have about females and filling the void and you know filling the holes they feel outside and all that good stuff but we do that we use those things but yeah so I personally have found being in a relationship with someone in recovery incredibly beneficial you know as I said one just enough to keep me from not straying too far but another great benefit has been and my wife and I share a lot of recovery ideas and conversations and you hear people like I’ve heard people over the years talk about you know we’re in this relationship and we don’t get in each other’s recovery I don’t even understand what that means you know to me my recovery is such an intimate part of who I am the way that I live it’s pretty much my whole value structure at this point in my life has come from what I’ve learned through the process of the steps and recovery I don’t know how I couldn’t talk about those things with my wife you know in her with me and and she’s got more time with me and she’s been through the steps a couple of more times and me and sponsored a lot more people than I have so she has a very different take and understanding on the steps I hesitate to say that it’s better because of course I think that I’m smarter and my understanding is better but it’s definitely different and she’s definitely got a much broader view and a much broader perspective on some of these ideas and applications and principles than I do and we’ll share about that stuff a lot like that’s an important part of our relationship is talking about our recovery our values we will we will share things you know about friends and people in recovery too on how to help them or how to help you know each other sponsor people you know things like that that is just invaluable information it’s interesting because if you said if you said to me hey there’s this person that has more time than you and has worked the steps three times as many times as you do you think they have more or wider recovery or whatever you would like to call it I would say [ _ ] no and yet I know every time I’ve worked the steps I’ve looked back at previous me and thought damn I’ve really grown a lot since that last time like I’m getting a better understanding this time through it’s another layer we peel back right so it’s interesting that I don’t and people credit for that I could see where that so one of the things that always strikes me as interesting and it stood out to me it has been a complaint of mine oh [ _ ] I hope my wife really doesn’t listen to these anymore since she’s not driving to work because I’m about to get in big trouble probably for criticizing our relationship but so I’ve sponsored guys that came into recovery and they had a girlfriend that they met in active using write and look I get everybody’s active using it looks different mine you know theirs might not have been like sleeping on a park bench with you know socks that would stand up by themselves because you’ve had them on for a straight month their teeth you haven’t brushed in three months like maybe there’s didn’t look like that but that’s what I picture when they I’m like active addiction but these partners that these guys had put up with whatever it was they were doing an active addiction which I know had to be unattractive and awful and pretty like it’s not the traits you want in a partner an active you actively using person is not the partner you want in your life right so for people to gather this partner into their life while they’re at their worst I’m like there’s something [ _ ] wrong with these people there’s something wrong with you if you date somebody inactive using I’m sorry I don’t give a [ _ ] what you say there’s something wrong with you you got some issues right you need some therapy probably and maybe your own program but I’m picturing that and I say okay even if they accept you right now right you’re gonna work steps you’re gonna work a step four a five a six or seven eight nine you’re going to change and become a better person right the old saying birds of a feather flock together water seeks its own level look if we were talking about a recovery running buddy right somebody goes to meetings with you with three months clean you guys both have around the same time you hit meetings generally what happens is you grow apart at some point you like either they keep working steps and you don’t or you keep working steps and they don’t and you just end up with different levels of recovery or interests or spirituality or never this applies to relationships too I think and so once you’ve worked a set of twelve steps and you have this partner that you met while you were actively using my question is what the [ _ ] do they have to offer you anymore because they’ve stayed in the same spot this is speculation right because I don’t give people outside of recovery room to grow very frequently which is the beef that my wife has with this statement but so I look at that and I express it in my own life and I say damn Here I am many years later after meeting my wife right many steps and times through the steps later after meeting my wife I have grown exponentially completely different [ _ ] person than if you met me when I met my wife has she and that’s the question mark I have right and I’m not trying to belittle her put her down I love her but I say did I meet her and I’ve grown and she has not grown as much because she doesn’t have the 12 steps that doesn’t mean she hasn’t grown at all she’s done some things she’s sought some therapy this kind of stuff and the other I’m putting her business all out there [ _ ] it but that I I think that’s a drawback personally I look at it as a drawback of not being with somebody in recovery look I get it somebody in recovery can use you can get 20 years together with your partner and have kids and then they can just [ _ ] disappear and not be around anymore forever but I dislike the fact that I don’t have that to share with my partner that growth that yeah her recovery should be her responsibility but I would like to have it to talk about I would like to grow together or feel like we’re growing in our programs together what are you what do you got for that so well immediately I thought I’ll take your wife’s defense and say you know healthy people I think normal people are still growing and changing I mean I think my understanding of life even outside of recovery like I’ve gained life experience and knowledge just in the 20-something years I’ve been an adult you know and that life experience you know means something and hopefully I’m reflective enough on myself and and almost back to the conversation we had about the triangle self-obsession so as an addict I come in lacking skills that most normal people or earth people would already have in their life I need the step work to try to get me back to the average level like the step work doesn’t necessarily put me above regular people it’s to bring me back to level with regular people now I can continue to grow and change and continue to get better but I’m starting at a lower spot than they were to begin with you know my addiction puts me on a sub equal level at least that’s what I understand so I think normal healthy people are going to grow and change and become different throughout their life also I think we’re that and even me and my wife have both been in recovery this whole time and both work steps and we haven’t grown at the same rate and even if it’s been at the same rate the result hasn’t been the same so even if we worked an equal amount of steps over the equal amount of time and everything being the same we would probably still be in two completely different places because of our belief and value system the difference I think is and this goes back to make my earlier point what makes the relationship I think strong or helps to keep it strong is the communication like we’ll talk about those things we can talk about the ways that we view some of these things differently my wife and I don’t share the same values on sponsorship you know we have very different values on sponsorship you know she’ll fire sponsors I won’t fire spawn sees just not something I do I mean I probably once or twice in recovery I have but you know and maybe we’ll get into that when we talk about sponsorship but I’m just saying that’s one area where we don’t necessarily agree on that and I don’t think that she’s wrong or that I’m wrong I think that we just have different values when it comes to that stuff we very frequently have different values when it comes to advocating in our communities for different stuff stayin enough for different beliefs going out you know publicly speaking out you know against different social issues you know and and her opinion on those things in my opinion on those things is very different where I think what makes it healthy is that one we can talk to each other about it I try very hard not to criticize or belittle or diss minish her beliefs or make her feel like she’s wrong even though that’s my nature that’s what I want to do because I’m a debater and I’m a arguer of things and I want to make myself be right all the time um that’s an area where especially with her I have to try to not push that cuz I can push her buttons really easy and try to make her feel wrong and belittle her beliefs but what keeps our relationship strong I think is trying to honor and value her beliefs even when they’re different than mine so you made definitely a couple of good points in there I do think the ultimate counter to that people will be if you’re outside of a recovery program right and I argue and say well if I meet you what I’ve only worked when I haven’t worked any steps and then I’m gonna grow past you when I’ve worked around the steps right well what about if I meet you after one round the steps am I gonna grow past you after I’ve worked a second round so the ultimate counter is well when the [ _ ] can you meet somebody because you’re always going to keep growing right if you’re lucky me right right and so I think yeah you make a valid point like I like the humbling aspect of it too honestly it was humbling for you to say that we start out less than right I’ve want to argue back and say wow that may be true our partner accepts us when we meet them and so we must be like I do truly believe in the water seeks its own level like if we were so unhealthy that all the red flags were out there I just assume healthy people wouldn’t go for that right they would say oh you’re way below well my one quick counter to that would be my understanding of the infatuation face so that infatuation phase especially early on helps us again and the way they described it was something like this and this cover easily apply to addicts so let’s say you’re in your early 20s and you’re a female and you meet a guy that’s in his early 20s and he’s living in his parents basement and you know all of a sudden you know it’s great because he’s got all this free time to dedicate to you and he can give you all this attention and all this stuff and you’re ignoring the fact that he’s 20-something years old living in his parents basement doesn’t have a regular job and has no ambitions to move above that you will ignore you know it’s great in that moment because all his ambition is focused toward you right but after a year or two and you’re like all right now we want to have kids we want to get a house we want to get all this stuff well he didn’t just grow ambition out of the side of his head you know I mean he never had that ambition to begin with you had it he didn’t you know that’s the he’s living in your car I mean living in your apartment driving your car going out and doing other women that he now has time to see other women because you have to work at home in your apartment all day right so in fairness to the you know you and again people’s background I think play some into that they could be codependent they could have grown up in relationships with parents that are addicts or alcoholics I know that seems to be a big thing that you know if you grow up with an addict or an alcoholic parent it’s somehow makes you way more tolerable of a lot of those behaviors in a spouse even if you’re not an addict yourself so I think some background issues have well they’re comfortable they feel like home right it doesn’t seem so foreign right yeah and so I mean it all makes sense but it was very humbling for me and I appreciate it for you to remind me that we start out below and so all the work all the extra work I’ll do it isn’t making me like way better than everybody it’s just getting me to [ _ ] it even and and it’s still not always even getting me to even that’s a good point another point Caroline had mentioned that I wanted to address a little bit is the idea and so she’s coming more from a dating standpoint and I do think we need to do another episode that definitely includes some input on that because I don’t feel like we’ve exactly had that experience but the idea of your partner being able to drink so right like if you’re a person who doesn’t drink how healthy is that does that work for you and I guess that’s not something you’ve really had to experience now and I would say so my wife has had that experience but I don’t think I’d want to do a podcast with her and talk about her past relationship she’d have to do it without be sit here cuz that would just be too I don’t know maybe it would be good for us but it would be very uncomfortable and awkward for me to sit here and hear her talk about all her past relationship but well I’m just I’m thinking about my wife so when we met and I mean she still occasionally has a drink like there is almost always just because of gifts that are given to her at some point there’s almost always been alcohol in our house the entire time we’ve been together I honestly never really thought about it I just don’t think about it and I don’t know that that speaks any volumes about my program I just I’ve kind of ignored it I don’t know funny so it’s like the opposite of me like there’s never been alcohol in my house and there was one time like my brother-in-law came over and he brought a couple beers meeting carry acid you know it’s fine whatever but then he left him in the fridge after he left so for like three or four days there was like a six-pack of beer in the fridge and I didn’t even know like I’m like do I do what I think I ended up throwing it out cuz I’m like I let this in my hat like right you know we just never have alcohol in our house anyway well no I think this comes back a lot to you know the point that Stephanie was making on on Instagram like put the message like some people are gonna be okay with that and some heart and I think even some people at different times or points in their life I could get to some low points where maybe it’s not safe for that to be in my house with me right I haven’t and I hope I don’t but I guess that’s possible I know I can look back to our behavior early hoard when I met my wife we would go out and hang out coworkers at times at bars they would all drink I did not I can look at that now and say that was probably not the greatest idea for me most of the time it didn’t bother me but there was that one night where I said I was in a bad mood things were rough and I was like maybe I should write and I didn’t but I know that I recognize like man it wouldn’t take much for me to have made the other decision there and so I don’t know earlier when I was probably less in the place of making good decisions about it now it just doesn’t seem to really be something I think of I think it helps that it’s not a behavior my wife does frequently it’s not like she has a glass of wine every night at dinner this is like once every three months she’ll have a glass of wine or a bath like it’s kind of that kind of thing or or if we do go out with some of her friends she might have you know something to drink but it’s not any kind of regular thing so I don’t so now when I asked a funny question and if you have to plead the fifth here you can because it might get you in a bad spot but has she ever went out like God all totally like shit-faced drunk and come home like ridiculous and obnoxious and what’s that been like like we have gone out and she has done that almost it might even been my fault I might have been encouraging that honestly you know loosen her up a little bit we’ll get a little fun tonight a little wild and it didn’t work out that way but well past where it needed and it was really really ugly for me to watch I’ve found I’m very intolerant of drunk people it just it’s so off-putting and so no yes yes it is but we were even past that point to where it was just like [ _ ] should I take her to the emergency and I do take responsibility for it I said I think I was actually encouraging it but it yeah so that that’s been no fun I don’t like that imagine I don’t I don’t mind it so much when it’s like 1 or 2 drinks yeah that’s much different really and it’s so infrequent that it’s really not something I think about it so I think that would matter I don’t think there’s a a one-size-fits-all for any of this I guess that’s we should just call it our [ _ ] podcast one size doesn’t fit all but like it depends on how often is drinking a big part of their life like is are they a person a partner who’s gonna come home from work every day and have a little bit of alcohol I don’t know that that makes you an alcoholic but it definitely probably makes you to have more interest in alcohol than I would like to have an alcohol for sure alright and yeah like to say I think it does make a difference because I have a family member who I would say I mean it’s again I can’t necessarily say they’re an alcoholic but they definitely drink every day there’s always beer you know beer to hear sometimes a little more sometimes mixed drinks but alcohol seems to be a major part of their life but they are high-functioning have a good job aren’t getting you know not the stuff that I was doing they’re not you know duis and I was a very successful career wise you know responsible in their marriage so it’s hard for me to say whether I think that’s an alcoholic or not but that’s definitely way more alcohol than I like to be around and in fact when we have to do things at their house or be around those people I I always limit and give myself like I’m gonna say an out just because it’s not comfortable for me but other times like my family’s always been people that they’re drinking you know they’ll get together and have part and and for most of my relatives that don’t drink a lot I can be around them with a couple of beers and that doesn’t really bother me so much so if you’re talking marriage building a family talking about procreating you know the next generation is that something you need to consider when you’re finding a partner for that like do I want my children seeing alcohol use even if it’s not that frequent like do I want them I personally would honestly rather my kids me of the opinion that alcohol is [ _ ] poison no matter what small amounts you take it in and you probably just should never write all these studies like a little bit alcohol is healthy for you that’s all paid for by the alcohol right not really a real thing so it’s like now I know that the mother is showing them something different than that I don’t really completely like that I wish they just thought of it as society gives them that – it’s not just my mother I mean it’s like a rite of passage to drink of near 21 and all like all this [ _ ] stuff but I don’t know is that affect your marriage oh I mean obviously doesn’t affect my marriage was oh I’m not around anybody drinking but um it’s weird like I noticed with our kids like our kids all seem like they’re and I don’t know if this is healthy or not like I’ve actually thought huh I might be unhealthy like they’re pretty scared of alcohol they pretty they don’t you know cuz I’ve always told them like look you know you may be able to drink healthy they’re people that do it and it’s okay we don’t you know it’s dangerous to me we’ve had honest conversations with them about addiction and what it kind of looks like and the warning signs of you know hey if because my kids now are teenagers one’s 18 ones you know 15 gonna be 16 soon you know that’s the age that you start getting into those kind of things and you go to a friend’s house for a party and they got some booze there and that sort of stuff and so we have tried to be pretty open with our kids about what addiction is and what it looks like but also tell them like you know look there are people that use healthy you know they see family members they see like you know my parents for example my dad he drinks but he’s a healthy person he doesn’t drink all the time you know but occasionally as a couple beers one night they saw him fall down drunk which was kind of funny they were a little embarrassed for him it was right after my mom passed and it’s you know whatever but he came home like fall down literally fall down drunk and the kids were like oh my god we can’t believe that’s what that looks like it was so freakin weird you know to see like this person that we know so [ _ ] up you know on alcohol like that so you know that was an interesting experience for the because they had never they’ve never seen us drink or under the influence of anything but I thought about that also with like prescription medications like we don’t keep prescription medications around our house either not for very long if we ever have to take them we take them and get rid of them pretty quick I don’t like to have them around the house hmm and that’s more for me than for anything else like I don’t like to be around opioids at all you know that’s my you know if you want to say drug of choice that’s my drug of choice ooh I’ll keep that [ __ ] around the house there’s people who do

interesting some other aspects of this I wanted to talk about I feel like there’s gonna be ways that being married to someone in recovery versus being married to someone not recovery are different that we just don’t even [ _ ] realize they don’t pop up right but ways we might try to think about like going to meetings one of the things I’ve seen over the years with different couples is even people who are both in recovery I think because they want to keep keep their recovery separate I’m doing the air quotes again and they pick different nights to go to meetings especially once you have kids like oh one needs to stay home with the kids so your home group sort of Monday my home groups on a Thursday it’s kind of hard to justify getting a second night of meetings in for each person right because then that’s four nights of your life where there’s only seven each week and so I’ve seen that be kind of a place of contention you would think to people in recovery oh go to the same [ _ ] meetin perfect right but once you have kids that doesn’t always work out quite that way especially if you don’t really want to introduce your children to the fellowship which not everybody does but I would say from my standpoint like I have at times felt I don’t even know what exactly I feel but I don’t want to always run to a meeting because it’s not what my wife does either right like I don’t want to have to run out I feel like even though I feel like I need to and it’s not up for debate and she’s never ever let me specify she has never ever made me feel bad about to a meeting but I feel bad inside I’m like oh I’m not carrying my end of it I should be home more or whatever so how does that what do you think about that difference between um I don’t know if there’s a difference um with my wife and I let’s see early and recovery again before we had kids we would go to meetings together and in fact we had the same home group for a while together and that was convenient and great and then things change over time like say whether it was we both needed our own space or whether it was the kids I can’t exactly remember but at some point we got different home groups now I think it’s really important that we have different home groups I tell her she’s always welcome to come to my home group but she doesn’t you know and her she had a woman’s home group for a while so I definitely wasn’t going there it’s funny because Billy always told me he couldn’t share about his wife at his home group because it’s such a small area and I feel weird and then he comes on a podcast and puts it out so everybody can hear just obvious what’s that put what out you’ll talk about Earl here but I’m like you won’t talk about it in your home group but then you’ll come talk about her where she can lie or so well I feel like this is more anonymous almost like less people know her personally that listen to this I think maybe yeah maybe it’s that’s easy to say but um you know yeah I think it’s important that and maybe that’s a part of it I which I didn’t even think about like so many people know my wife I can’t really go to meetings and cheer about her anyway so whether she’s sitting there or not you know I have friends privately that I’ll talk to about my relationship or things that I’ll share you know one on one that I wouldn’t say in a meeting because we’re in such a small area but there’s definitely been times where I have gotten very jealous of Na or the demands that they put mostly on her because at times she’s been quite active in recovery where she had like an agent I commitment and then she sponsors a bunch of people and then she’d get asked to speak at a meeting and you know so easily in a week she can have four or five you know in a related commitments you know and I get angry or jealous about those things sometimes because we did have small kids and I couldn’t always go and I’d be like look you got to learn some fun limitations with this [ _ ] you know I’m not telling you which ones you got a pic and which ones you can but if it’s a week you got your home group and your each and I commitment well we can’t be scheduling speaking engagements and sponsorship things then too you know you got to take that stuff into consideration about how many nights a week you’re gonna be gone because I’m you know I’m in a relationship I don’t want to come home to a house by myself every night after work like that’s I don’t want that it’s not what I want um now with her I would say and I guess it’s fair to say she would agree with this she’s not the greatest scheduler so most of her scheduling [ _ ] like that is totally just fluke wise like someone just asked her to speak and she just goes okay you know what day is that again like she doesn’t even really keep track it’s more of us she just commits to doing it and then realizes oh [ _ ] this is the same week as you know this other commitment that I had or the same week so-and-so asked me to speak here and they asked me to speak here in the same week and I don’t know that that makes it better but it’s still like there have been times where I’ve been angry and jealous of the demands that recovery is put on either her or myself in our relationship something you just made me think of is that like we’re as adults with kids and and all these responsibilities were forced into these you almost have to meet your friends wherever it is you are right and so that’s given me the ability as a member of some of a recovery program that I can meet people who are living other recovery oriented lives and you know trying to do some spiritual principles and trying to work towards like spiritual growth and better understanding of myself like that’s the people who are around me and you know my wife’s a teacher and so not that they’re bad people but the people she’s around or people she works with that’s the only place she really goes right she doesn’t hang covery program and so she might meet people whose great idea of you know fun and unwinding for the week is happy hour on Friday and like is that bad no but would it be cooler she was meeting people and we’re like all about hey let’s do yoga and meditate like that be [ _ ] I did like that more right yeah I think it was set around a better path well funny enough and and we like to do camping we like the outdoors and camping a lot and I can tell you a large percentage of the camping world to keep people and I don’t talk about like backpackers that go out and like rough it off-the-grid kind of camping I’m talking about people that go to like campgrounds and big you know the closest campground part like that our whole thing is going there to get drunk all weekend like that’s a major part I they think if you can’t drink you’re not camping but we like that lifestyle what goes along with it you know other than the drinking part it was funny just to see like wow like these people that are into camping think that drinking is just like a [ _ ] campfire like it just goes hand in hand yeah so yeah if you’re not in recovery it’s easy to get involved with a group of people that all of a sudden alcohol or you know recreational use is a part of that community because they just think that’s what you do so along with the meeting type idea what I’ve run into on vacations right early on in my marriage I wanted to go to conventions and I wanted to bring my wife right okay and she did she went to a convention or two with me but I didn’t enjoy it honestly because I just felt guilty while we were sitting in the meeting and it had nothing to do with her she was fine she was like you know what I’ll just sit in the meeting with you it’s not a big deal like we’ll enjoy some time on a vacation you can enjoy some time in a meetings whatever I just felt guilty I’m like she just won’t hear this [ _ ] and so it didn’t work out well for me and I also know that we’ve gone on vacations to different areas and I’ve said I am definitely hitting a [ _ ] meetin when we go here right we went to Hawaii and I was like bro god I had a meeting in Hawaii it sounds [ _ ] epic right and I didn’t and the reason I didn’t was because my partner is not in recovery and I just felt weird pulling myself away from the family to go to a meeting right whereas if my partner was in recovery that would’ve been something we both could have been excited about and gone and done we could schedule vacations around conventions if that’s what we wanted to do but we could at least also hit these interesting meetings and new areas together and we would have been excited about it together and I feel like I missed out on that from not having a partner in recovery yeah well Jen I had a fight over that actually one time in Vegas actually we were in Vegas and stays in Vegas bill yeah yeah well now we’re not allowed to talk about it but like saying we were kind of on vacation with we had actually went with some friends a friend of ours was getting married out there and we went and she was like hey let’s you know we should go to a meeting like nobody wants to go to a meeting we’re in Vegas were on vacation like who wants to go to meetings and not actually you know that was a big it upset her like it and it wasn’t that it upset her because we didn’t go to a meeting it was like that I was so just dismissive and just blew that off as like some kind of dumb idea like what are you talking about like we’re on vacation we’re not at home like we don’t have to go to meetings now and it was very dismissive of her opinion or her feeling at that time and she probably felt like you did like hey we’re in a new place we can hit a new meeting and be interesting um so what’s happened with my wife and she’s not even him you know she’s in recovery and we’ve still had that issue I’ve made it a point since I missed the Hawaii one that I Florida Wisconsin New Jersey like any of these places I go I definitely take a night and go to a meeting even when I even when the time comes and everything says it’s [ _ ] easier not to I just I got to now I don’t want to feel that way again and I as a part of a man’s you know I try to be way more accommodating for that stuff either with her going with her or making it a point to let her know like hey if you want to hit a meeting that’s cool you know and and leave that door open for her like and that’s the thing with a lot of these issues like it’s not that there’s a right or wrong solution you know in our case like in in this case like I just sounded like that’s who she is that’s what she does and she would want to get you know for me a vacation is I want go somewhere and sit around and hopefully do a whole lot of nothing and like say I like camping so if I’m lucky I want to have a campfire and sit outside around a campfire every night maybe look at the Stars maybe have some good conversation or listen to music you know that’s a vacation I don’t want to be running around doing a bunch of [ _ ] all busy I do that the regular time in my life my vacation is different but it’s important to her so as a partner what I should try to do is encourage and and build up her like hey if that’s what you want to do that’s awesome I don’t necessarily want to go you know what I mean and I don’t have to I can say hey I don’t really want to go but if you want to hit a meeting that’s cool you know I’m off support I’ll take out got the kids I’ll take care of dinner you go out and do what you want to do you know it’s it’s being accommodating to the person that you’re with I think is what’s most important so one of the things that I’ve been jealous of in my marriage with someone outside of recovery is that I see couples who are able to and and I guess like I could probably do these things anyway it just feels weird to me but like na as a fellowship has a lot of events right we have picnics cookouts fish fries whatever the hell softball events and it just seems like I’ve seen couples who you know maybe their kids aren’t you for example I think you and your wife go to events together and it’s like I know your kids aren’t young anymore but even those kind of things that’s not a meeting hopefully and so I’m a little I’ve always been jealous I’m like I don’t have that I can’t bring her into my life and share that as much I could it just doesn’t seem to have the same effect and I guess what the ultimate thing behind that is that’s a specific example but the general idea is when recovery is such a big portion of my life right maybe maybe na is not maybe these steps themselves are not but recovery and being a better human is such a huge portion of my [ _ ] life and my purpose in life it’s hard to have a partner at times that I feel like isn’t doesn’t give that the same priority or not it’s not that it’s not a priority to him it’s just not in the forefront of their mind on a regular basis on a daily basis I got to think what strategy am I gonna take today to not be a [ _ ] [ _ ] basically and I don’t think she has to think that kind of stuff she can just wake up and like try to enjoy the day with the kids or something and so it’s just hard for me I’ve always been jealous that I wish I could like share more of that journey with her instead of just sharing my journey with her I want to share our journey in the recovery process and so I’m not saying there’s one way better than the other but that is something I almost feel like I missed out on or I don’t get to do as much and or I don’t know how to replicate maybe is what I’m looking for well and that’s why I think we’ve taken our kids to events or even had in a kind of I’ll say quote unquote I’ll say recovery events at our house and stuff is because that is the opportunity to open that door to that part of our lives to our family and to open our family to that part of our life you know what I mean like my friends in recovery the guys in my home group like they’ve all seen you know kind of watch my kids grow up and I’ve had other people that I’ve known for years and years in recovery and I don’t I don’t really know their kids with their families that much because they don’t include them in those things and I don’t know for me personally I think it’s a missed opportunity I would say that’s the exact the events and get-togethers and the picnics and all that stuff like that’s the stuff like that the purpose of them is to bring your families and to let people know who you are and a half phone and all that like meetings aren’t the place where they should be maybe conventions aren’t even the place that they should be with you but you know those are the places where we can open those doors yeah but I almost it’s almost like I could go to Australia and walk into a [ _ ] NA meeting or any recovery meeting freely and I’m instantly comfortable I already know I got [ _ ] in common with these people we’re gonna have something to talk about besides the weather like we got some commonalities right and they feel like family almost even though I’ve never met these people in my life and I think that when I take my wife places I don’t get that sentiment out of her she’s like I don’t I don’t think she has that innate you know oh hey we already got a whole lot in common I can just easily you know without effort talk to you there’s more anxiety and there’s more maybe you know separation between that and so we talked about you know couples have couple friends well maybe they go out to dinner together maybe they go vacation together like my wife’s parents have couple friends that they used to work with or that they did this with and they’ll go out to dinners sometimes my wife and I don’t really have couples friends she has her friends that we’ve hung out with as couples a couple times but they are people who drink and I love them they’re really nice people but I don’t have a lot in common with them usually and I just wish like I feel like if she was in recovery you know I look at you and and your wife and I say damn we could have recovery couples friends and that would be pretty goddamn cool because then we all know each other already and it’s comfortable like if I hung out what if I took her to hang out with couples in recovery she’s not gonna know the people she’s gonna be awkward and weird and for a minute I mean and I say that because I know a couple that the guy is very involved in recovery and the woman is I mean I’ll say she’s not about she’s not an addict but she is very involved in recovery she’s like you know recovery mom or whatever you want to call it like she’s not an addict she doesn’t work steps or have a sponsor and never suffered with addiction but everyone knows her when she goes to meetings she goes to his home group with him you know she goes to all the events and picnics and everybody knows who she is and most people are surprised to find out that she’s not enough you know and it’s just that’s the relationship because that’s what they built and she has friendships and things that are built around recovery people even though she’s not specifically an addict but what I was thinking was you know flip-flop that the other way like wouldn’t you still feel like if and maybe not maybe I’m miss reading this so if your wife said oh one of my co-workers is having some picnic at their house and they want to invite us and the kids I mean once you feel like you should go with her to share like in that experience because that’s a part of her life and the people that she’s with and that’s how you build a relationship there was a Christmas party then we got invited to from some of her friends and their friends that I truly I like the people we’ve spent some time then we went to a concert with them and enjoyed it like I really do like the people but I knew that this Christmas party well I didn’t know actually I kind of thought it was gonna be a little different and I was waiting that I’m having to go late because my daughter had a basketball game whatever but I was like really committed to go on I’m like yes we’re gonna go we’re gonna show up we like these people this is important for you I’m gonna be a really good husband we’re gonna do this right and end up turning to an argument because I thought we should skip the basketball game and go earlier like when the party started and my wife whose friends it was was like no we should do the basketball game that’s it more importantly whatever so we argued about it we ended up loading a basketball game we go late was not the good time I thought it was gonna be and everybody there it was like [ _ ] ton of people all pretty much plastered and I was like oh my [ _ ] god I am so glad we went to the bathroom later Ari that’s I just I don’t get much out of that people get a little too far over the line and I don’t that’s what her friends do for joy and I’m not knocking it I like the couple who invited us I like them when it’s us four or maybe one more couple but isn’t that the point of relationships is sharing and growing and having this experience with these other people like everything I do with my wife isn’t all about me and what I like and I’ll do things with her that I don’t necessarily like or I’m not into you know for a long time she was into art and tattoos and all that stuff and we would go to tattoo conventions and I am NOT a tattooed person I don’t fit that I’ve won she did I’m not a tattooed person I don’t fit that whole image look lifestyle you know what I mean like that’s just not my scene or my people but that to me like that is an opportunity to learn or get a little insight into her and what she likes and her world of stuff so I would go or I’ve went and sort of dealt with the awkwardness but because it’s not always about me it’s not always about what I want yeah she liked it though memes did you like that I have no you can’t take one bad experience and say you know what is that one bad apple spoils punch got it like you can’t say every experience she has with her friends is gonna be like and maybe they are maybe she’s got shitty friends I don’t know I don’t know it’s easy for me to say maybe they’re alcoholics you know I don’t know her friends but I’m just saying like I think that’s where my understanding of like intimacy comes from it’s trying to get a deeper understanding and a deeper knowledge of this person that I’ve decided I want to be with and there are aspects of their life that I don’t necessarily understand or get it but it it’s not necessarily about me getting it it’s just about me trying to support and encourage and challenge them that is challenging when you’re talking about friends that well that’s a different Lonnie yeah I mean I wouldn’t I wouldn’t encourage anyone to be so and again my family tends to be people that drink a lot of alcohol at different family events so one of the strategies that we came up for that and this mostly had to do with a lot of amends I was making to my mom at the time but one of the strategies that we came up with and we still do is we go to family parties [ _ ] early like when they start at 12 we’re there at 12 and then we try to leave at like 4 or 5 because once it hits the later time usually like a lot of these family parties will be somebody’s graduation from Highschool somebody’s 50th birthday party whatever big family thing comes up most things in my family are everyone shows up you know there might be some cooking on the grill or some food and everybody eats and the kids are playing having a good time and then usually like six or seven like everyone’s drinking through that time but then as it gets dark it seems like you know now we’re into drink number seven or eight and the people that are drinking or starting to drink a little more and the ones that tend to drink a lot and get really drunk or getting to that point and then it’s drinking and carrying on and [ _ ] whatever goes along with that part of it our strategy is we go early and we leave early you know like we don’t participate in the drinking you know why am i sitting around with a bunch of people that are getting drunk for three hours when they’re all happy being drunk you know like that isn’t a thing that I want to do so anyways yeah no but that’s not what we did we did the opposite we showed up as everybody was already drunk you ain’t tried to insert ourselves and then you know I don’t know so I guess I don’t know we have to wrap this up but so I mean is I feel like I’ve expressed a lot of ways where I have not regret but where I see things that I’m like oh the other side seems like it has some attractive points that I’m not able to have with having a partner not in recovery right we lose that ability to share that portion and maybe maybe I am just caught in a grass is greener on the other side view right like maybe there’s these problems on both sides and it just seems that way because this is the side I’m warned yeah and I was just gonna say that so we could do a equally long podcast about the challenges of being in a relationship with somebody that’s in recovery I could throw it you know now I like say if we start down the road okay just as long – that’s one but then there’s also the whole self-centered part of it you know I mean I’m not always in the greatest spiritual release my wife isn’t always in the greatest spiritual place you know what I mean there’s times that she battles with her demons and it starts to come out and her personality over time and we got be like are you [ _ ] okay like that we needed [ _ ] check you in somewhere and I’m sure she feels that way about me and we have to have and those are like serious conversations like we have to really seriously consider how mentally fragile or emotionally fragile either of us are at any given time I mean there are times where I’ve been to a point my marriage where I could have one bad decision and wrecked our whole [ _ ] life you know whereas you tend to think with non addicts there’s a little more stability and that kind of stuff and I don’t mean just using you know it can be spending all the money it could be I mean I’ve thought a couple of times like I’m just gonna get my [ _ ] car and drive away from here and I’ll [ _ ] I’m not coming back I’m not coming back and don’t I can’t do this anymore right and I’m sure she’s felt the same way and we’ve luckily not done it but we’ve known relationships that haven’t made it through that off the top of your head do you know a couple other little like issues from that side of the fence or is that just one of the main ones you’ve been thinking of what as far as other complications of heaven to to people in recovery oh and then balancing out the meetings and recovery and who’s comes first because it’s unfair of me to tell her like well you can’t meet with sponsees and have an H and I commitment and have a home group and do all those things but then I want to have all those things – they’re healthy for me and how do i balance out you know how much attention goes towards my recovery commitments my home group my spawn sees she’s got equally all those things you know she sponsors a bunch of people I’m sponsoring five or six people at this point you know how do you balance that stuff out I mean that’s Jack I don’t think it’s fair of me to tell her she can’t have those things because I want those things to right I want to be able to say yes whenever anyone asked me to come speak somewhere you know it’s a yes that’s a yes you know and that’s a challenge sometimes it’s difficult so that is in and you know what we could shove into this amount of time which we have gone over that is a version of what it’s like to be married to someone else in recovery versus a version of what it’s like to be married to someone not in recovery and the realization that there is a [ _ ] ton of challenges to being married and I’ll say one other thing so good or bad this is gonna come out bad about the fellowship but there are a lot of I’ll say predatory people in recovery as far as they don’t respect the boundaries of marriage or relationships or anything else and over the years that’s been an issue where people you know people legitimately like call in our house to try to get in relationships with you know the spouse like that’s that boundary is pretty hairy in na there’s people that don’t respect that [ _ ] very much I could see that and that’s probably a society thing like we usually say but I could see that really leaving a bad taste about the recovery program in your mouth when somebody is trying to get with your wife well I think the difference in recovery is that it’s a it creates an atmosphere where there’s a lot more emotional intimacy and emotional vulnerable vulnerability so it’s easy to start into an emotional conversation guys that’s something not I want to get in your pants but like hey I’m having this issue with this step maybe we can get together and talk about it you know where’s the guys really got an ulterior motive right but it’s a little it’s it’s hidden it’s a little more subtle you know that the sneaky ways to get in there because we do talk about emotional things we are vulnerable when we come into meetings and share honestly there is this girl I really like and I’ve been wondering how do I tell her ya know I can see that I can see that and then that’s a lot of resentments against people that might have been due you know maybe not even close personal friends but people you respected in the fellowship but now you got to have a different you know feeling towards them yeah so there’s a lot of relationships are [ _ ] hard you know I’m sure we’ve said that before we’ll probably say it 48 more times next week but definitely I I don’t know that any one version is right or anyone version actually works out to be better I think they both have challenges I don’t know I guess I got to think about it a little more I still I’m like man I wish we could share more but maybe I’m just not doing what I need to do to share more recovery and growth based things with my wife maybe I just need to [ _ ] work harder doing that and include her and more and maybe it would be more what I wanted to be instead of just sitting around saying oh I can’t have that because that’s not you know what she does so that’s something this has made me look at for Caroline’s sake we probably did not cover exactly what she had envisioned maybe we can again broach this topic I definitely want to cover I want to cover what it’s like for our wives yeah I want to cover what it’s like for someone in recovery what it’s like to be married to someone in recovery yeah and then someone not in recovery what it’s like to be married to a goddamn addict like me because I can only that’s gonna be an ugly episode maybe I shouldn’t listen to that and yet assert but we will be back next week to talk about step 7 it’ll be July I already [ _ ] stuck in quarantine July we’ll talk about that and I can’t wait God if you are have only understood steps 7 to mean that God is gonna remove your defects come the [ _ ] back to here Billy tell us how that works without God I can’t wait I’ve been dying but waiting a month Liz so I’m excited for that and we will see you next week I’m gonna piss again sit and drink coffee and it’s hot as [ __ ] nuts Oh

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