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Being Second Choice | Life with an Alcoholic

I remember the screaming and yelling. And fear. This was the first night I recall feeling really, really scared. There were other times I felt threatened, scared of fighting, scared of the impact on our kids, but this time, I was really done. I only wish I gone through with it.

I remember a crying baby, and soon a crying 3 year old. I wish I could remember what the fight was about, but it’s really irrelevant. It doesn’t matter what you’re fighting about when you are arguing with a drunk. I just knew I had to keep the three of us safe. I retreated to the bedroom and locked the door, with him screaming and yelling at me through it. He was not happy I had locked him out. It was HIS house and HIS bedroom too.

Before I knew it, the door was kicked open, wood went flying, and I was basically scared shitless. There was no arguing with him. I used the kids as an excuse and laid down in bed with them cuddled on me, pretending I fell asleep too so he would leave me alone. He eventually fell asleep too.

I laid there plotting our escape. As soon as I knew he was in a deep sleep, I would get up, throw everything I could into trash bags, and load up the car. I’d grab the kids last. I knew he would be out cold long enough for me to do this. It was time. I was ready. We would drive as long as I could that night, sleep at a hotel, and then continue to my parents’ in Florida. By the time he knew we were gone, we would be safe. I had settled it in my head.

And then the rain came, followed by thunder, and lightning. And it was pouring hard, and poured and poured. And I knew I couldn’t leave that night. He was asleep, so we were safe for the time being, and driving in that weather late at night with my babies in the care wasn’t going to be safe. I was so mad, but I went to sleep and would figure it out in the morning.

I think he was already gone when we woke up? I can’t remember. What I *do* remember is him calling me from our friends’ house and apologizing. He felt awful, he doesn’t know what happened, he was sorry, blah blah blah. It was what would become the usual song and dance through the years. And for some STUPID reason, I bought it.

He said he was done drinking like that, and he was so sorry. He just can’t do that anymore. And that’s why he wasn’t ever going to drink….liquor…again.

My heart fell, and I held back the tears.

We would *always* be the second choice, wouldn’t we?

{Read more: Why did I stay so long?

{To Love and Protect…an Alcoholic}