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My husband got a DUI a few weeks ago. I had to go to a meeting and he stayed home to do yard work. In the process he had a few beers, ran out of cigarettes, and decided to go to the store and buy some instead of waiting for me to get home to go to the store for him.
He forgot to put on his seat belt and the police pulled him over as soon as he left the parking lot. They noticed a beer smell and did a sobriety test on him and he was over the legal limit. He was arrested and the car towed. Since I had to have my cell phone turned off during the meeting, I tried calling home as soon as I got out to see if he needed anything before I came home, but there was no answer. I came home to no husband, no car, no note, no nothing. I waited awhile to see if he would be home soon, but after awhile I became increasingly nervous, got back in the car and started looking around neighboring gas stations, etc. to see if he had broken down somewhere.
I couldn't find him anywhere, so I went back home and waited awhile again, deciding what to. I finally called hospitals and the police station but no one had heard anything about him. The police came to the house and took a report and about an hour later, the policeman called me back saying he was in jail. It was the state police that arrested him, and it took awhile for the report to be forwarded to the local authorities.
The police said they had called my cell phone but got my voice mail and didn't leave a message. I had no "missed call" on my phone. Why couldn't they leave a message so at least I knew what happened?
I picked him up at the jail next morning. I didn't speak to him for 2 days because this had happened before, about 7 years ago. I have warned him and warned him about not drinking and driving but he thinks he's invincible when he starts to drink.
The result of all this?
He lost his job.
He lost his career. (Truck driver)
He's not eligible for unemployment.
He lost his driver's license.
He hasn't been able to find another job.
Thousands of dollars gone out of our retirement savings.
I can't find a job either-no one wants to hire someone 63 years old.
The court wouldn't reduce the DUI to a lesser charge even though it was considered a first offense.
The lawyer said the court "doesn't care" about our problems - he's considered a criminal now.
We have no money coming in at all. We're living on our savings.
I can't buy anything except groceries and gas. No clothes, nothing for the house, can't go anywhere....nothing.
He didn't want me tell anyone what happened, so I've had to lie to my sister, my best friend, my daughter and the neighbors.
I'm mad at my husband, the court system, the police and everyone connected with this fiasco. I just want to say that the courts should consider the fact that a DUI charge doesn't just affect the person getting arrested. Here I am, 63 years old, no income, spending my retirement and all of this through no fault of my own. Is that justice to them? What am I supposed to do now? Lose my house, my car, my savings, just so some cop could make his quota for the month?
Yeah, I'm mad. The whole world has me at their mercy, my life is going down the tubes and there isn't a thing I can do about it. And my husband just sits around watching TV like nothing's wrong. Every time he talks to me I want to bite his head off.
I'm the one submitting his resume everywhere, writing cover letters, looking for job listings.
Oh, forget it...life is just going to suck from now on.
Response from Dr. DeFoore
Hello Erica, and thanks for telling your story here. You have every reason for your anger. My concern for you now is that you're seeing yourself as a helpless victim, and your anger is just building inside. That won't be good for you or your health going forward.
I know you're angry and fed up, and may not be interested in anything I have to say. I will make some recommendations, which of course you're free to ignore or follow, as you choose.
I recommend that you stop doing anything to help your husband get a job. You are treating him as if he was a child, and this is only feeding your anger. Your husband is probably an alcoholic, as you will see by reading the warning signs on this page. I suggest you begin attending ALANON meetings in your area, to get support from others who understand.
And start focusing on yourself and your own well being. You may think you can't be hired at 63, but that's just not true. You can get a job if you set your mind to it and put the same effort into getting yourself a job that you've been putting into getting him one. The reason he's doing nothing is that you're doing it for him. When you stop, he either will or won't get busy and find himself a job--that's up to him, and that's why you've got to start thinking about yourself and your welfare.
Believe the best of your husband, focus on what you want in your marriage and your life, and do everything you can to make it happen.
You can do this. Make up your mind not to be a helpless victim of what has happened. Count your blessings (you have a home, savings, etc.) and go from there.
My very best to you,
P.S. If you found this to be helpful, please consider making a donation to this site to support our mission to help you become your own best anger management resource.
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