the couple with problems pt. I
Updated: Jun 28, 2019
I recently threw my husband a surprise party. As the planning began, a lot of vendors assumed I was throwing my husband a surprise birthday party. Actually, I was throwing him a surprise sobriety party.... a what? sobriety party?
I chose to celebrate my husband because of the man he is today, and where he has come from. If you knew what we'd been through, you would understand... so, below is the beginning of our story. This is a two part post that is very vulnerable and raw. It's about heartbreak, boundaries, and true surrender to Jesus. Read along to see how we got to where we are today.
Hi, my name is Hunter Orcutt and I’m married to a recovering alcoholic. Over two years ago I was standing face to face with my reality. My husband is addicted to alcohol. Wow, that’s harsh. Maybe I should have led with, “Hi my name is Hunter Orcutt and I love my husband so much.” Heck, I probably should have led with, “Hi my name is Hunter Orcutt. I’m a real human wanting to share my real story because I might not be the only one going through some real stuff.”
But all of the above is true. My husband is a recovering alcoholic, I do love him so much, and I do want to share my story with you today.
See, I’ve sat here and written this out about five different times. It’s hard trying to articulate our story. I don’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings but I do want you to understand the true tragedy and pain we walked through because if you understand that you can then understand the goodness of Jesus. This is our true story about redemption, addiction, hope and Jesus’ unending grace for all of us.
My husband and I grew up in household’s where drinking was a sin. We both knew better but when we were first married we started drinking casually together. Nothing out of the ordinary compared to every other friend we had. In 2016 I realized that my husband had a problem with alcohol. I was pregnant with our little girl Mitchell so I was forced to stop drinking. This is where things began to escalate. We weren’t making good money, we were working too many hours (Alan was working 2 jobs), we were unhappy with each other, we were making pour decisions, and we had a baby on the way. That’s a recipe for disaster honey.
In the spring of 2017, Alan and I were offered a job promotion that we turned down. We chose to move back to Dallas where all of our family was located. With no jobs and a three month old baby we moved in with my parents and, to be honest, I thought that was the end of drinking. We were getting out of our old environment of stress and dysfunction, moving back to our favorite city, and Alan respected my dad so I thought with his “no alcohol allowed” rule we were setting ourselves up for a fresh new start. Oh, let me tell you it was a new start but there was nothing fresh about it…..
See, I’m a fixer and doer. I help people, I tell people what to do, I want to plan and execute that plan. That’s a great trait if someone is willing to listen, but Alan wasn’t wanting to listen. Now looking back at my actions after LOTS of counseling I was, and can still be, a very controlling wife. My “fixing” and “doing” was not helping our situation. I was creating strife and adding on unnecessary chaos. I should have been striving to be a Godly wife, but instead I was trying to play the role as Alan’s spiritual compass.
A few months into living with my parents I realized Alan hadn’t stopped drinking, he was just getting better at hiding it. I thought to myself, “We moved, we got different jobs, and nothing has changed. What’s the next step to try to get Alan to see he needs help? AHH. Tell our parents.” I finally told my parents what we had been going through. They had no idea and were completely blindsided. Alan is the last person you would ever think to be an addict, much less someone that has ever received a ticket. If you would have told someone that knew both of us, that one of us was addicted to alcohol, 100% everyone would have picked me. I’m crazy, fun, and loud. Alan is reserved, smart (this guy made a 31 on his ACT)…HELLO, okay, smart and handsome. ;) All that to say my parents were shocked and devastated.
A few weeks after that conversation I noticed Alan was acting off aka “drunk” around 3pm in the afternoon. After a series of days like this I finally decided to call his parents and tell them. I was at loss for what to do… I thought everything I had done up to this point would have definitely made him want to stop drinking. It didn’t. So, his parents came over that evening and I told them Alan needed to stay with them for awhile. I’m standing there, in front of my in laws, telling them that their son (my husband) needs to go live with them. That was one of those moments of, “What has my life come to?”
Over the next few months there was a lot of back and forth between Alan and I. He apologized to my parents and my dad agreed to him moving back in. Days after that Alan was drinking again. It was this vicious cycle of hope and desperation, hope and desperation, hope and desperation…..
I finally made the decision on my own that for Alan to get help he needed to work on himself, and that meant he couldn’t live with Mitchell and I...
TO BE CONTINUED....
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