Tuesday, November 21, 2017
Parenting & Relationships

Tell Me About It: She's considering marrying into problems

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She's considering marrying into problems

Q: I'm six years out of a 35-year abusive marriage. Four years of intense therapy, hard work, and I am now healed and happy and open to another try at love and marriage.

I met a man online who lives 100 miles away, and is very sweet, vulnerable, tender, interesting, intelligent.

I'm very in love. He's very in love.

He has some health issues, and has gone to numerous doctors to find diagnosis and treatment. Currently, he's on a high dose of opioids for constant pain. Even with that, he still suffers intense residual pain.

When we are apart, he drinks about four beers a night so he can fall asleep. He also takes prescription sleeping pills. He tells me he has been drinking 6-8 beers per day for a number of years for the pain, but never gets drunk. He won't quit for a few months at my urging. He's been very open and honest with all areas of his life that I know of, and I trust him, but I am scared of marrying and then finding this wonderful person is an alcoholic.

Am I fooling myself into thinking we'll find answers for his pain and work together to get him off opioids when we're married???

Can't See Objectively

A:You can love this man. You can (try to) find answers for his pain and work together to get him off opioids. And alcohol.

You can do all of these things while remaining unmarried.

If it's love, it will wait. So wait.

Especially given the certain illness, probable addictions (plural) and possible eternity between now and a diagnosis, I also urge you to ask yourself whether your interest isn't only about his sweet, interesting intelligence. Could it be that his illness helped draw you in? Do you identify with him, or do you want to rescue vs. being rescued?

Therapy can be effective at restoring your optimism after trauma and still leave questions unanswered. Make, "Why would I ignore warning signs?" the next one you try to answer, please.

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