Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: RICHMOND, VA, USA
Thinking This is the beginning of Codependency(long winded post)
This is my first post on this forum, but I've been reading for a few days. I'll just introduce myself. I'm 22 (almost 23 years old). I graduated from George Mason University in 2011 with a degree in Biology. I'm currently in the process of applying for medical school. I'm an Alcoholic in AA with almost 5 months sober.
Anyways, I sort of have a history of exposure to codependent behavior. My mom is self-diagnosed as codependent, primarily through taking care of my dad who had Cancer of his Kidneys, Bladder, Prostate and Skin. He received a kidney transplant 2 years ago, and his health has improved significantly, but he still takes no interest in his health. He continues to smoke, which all of his Doctors told him was extremely likely to have caused his cancer in the first place. The is no legitimate medical reason that he is unable to take care of himself at this point, but refuses to get off the couch and help around the house, or do anything that may benefit himself or others. My aunt has poor money management skills, and my mom finds herself helping her out quite often. Anyways, that's just a background story.
Now about me. I'm gay and have been dating this guy for about six months. He is studying to be a nurse and living in the Richmond, VA area nearby (but separately from me).
He is completely broke, and has been since we began our relationship. I was okay with that, telling myself that I didn't need a credit check to be in a relationship with someone. He was unemployed up until 2 months ago, where he got a part-time seasonal job at a nearby theme park. He was living in an expensive apartment with a roommate, whose mother was covering the entire rent that they were supposed to be splitting. I've always thought he was very poor at managing his money, even when he got money. He's a hypochondriac and has tallied up over a thousand dollars in unnecessary ER Bills. His mom is not very supportive of him financially because she too, is cash strapped. My codependency began with him several months ago when he began working at the theme park and needed money for gas to get to work. It started as me bringing him a can of gas from the shed to put in his car just to get to work. Since then, the scenario has repeated itself numerous times to the point where I now just give him money, and take him shopping to by food. The money that he makes at his job is NOT enough to begin to cover his expenses from his bills, food, and gas, let alone "treating himself" to stuff that he wants.
Well, he recently had another "Emergency" where his lease has expired and he has to move out. He had ZERO dollars to his name and no place to go. He could move back in with his mom, and he has told me that this was an option, but he didn't want to do it as she lives about 50-60 miles away in a smaller town. I found myself getting anxious about where he was going to live and getting angry that he hadn't been saving for this, or planning where he was going to go. He knew that this was going to happen and had plenty of time to get things worked out.
He really needs to find a better/second job, and live much more frugally than he is now. I've made suggestions, and even looked up places that were hiring so that he could apply to as many places as he could. He shoots them down as "oh I tried applying there once and they said no" or " I applied to one of their locations" when there are 4 or 5 in the immediate vicinity accepting applications. I find myself getting very upset and resentful. Neither of which is good for my own recovery from alcoholism. I plan on discussing this with my sponsor this week when we meet up, just to try and clear my head. I know that I refuse to drink over this, but that doesn't mean it cannot happen. That is the worst possible thing I can do in my life at this moment.
My cousin is leaving the country for about a month and half and was subletting her apartment for a very reasonable rate. I thought this would be a perfect idea for him. I knew that his paycheck would not cover the full amount, but I could cover the rest and he could pay me back at some point. I have a decent paying job, and low expenses since I live at home with my parents.
Anyways, he had to move out 2 days ago, and my aunt had brought me the keys to my cousin's apartment at work (we work at the same place). She had paid my cousin in advance since she was leaving the country and my boyfriend didn't get paid until after she left. I was planning to write her back the amount and collect from my boyfriend an uncertain amount. Anyways, when I went to his house to help him move and collect the money from him. He laid out his money in cash on the table and showed me what he was giving to pay my aunt/me and his other various expenses. The amount he gave me was significantly less (less than half) than what I was going to pay my aunt. I was somewhat upset by that, but knew that I would be financially okay footing the bill. What made me more upset than anything was when I asked him how much he was saving. He simply replied "for what?" very seriously. I lost it inside, but didn't let that show outwardly (for some reason).
Anyways, I paid my aunt the full amount and basically written it off to myself as never going to see it again. I've accepted it, and tried to just let it go so that I don't get too resentful.
The problem I face now, is that when my cousin returns in 40 days, he will be faced with the same problem. I am hopeful he can find another job and a new place to live by then, but in my heart I kind of know that this would require a lot of luck, because he is unlikely to put the effort into it. I don't know why he doesn't see the gravity of the situation, but he doesn't and there's nothing I can do to make him. He could apply for food stamps. He could be sending in dozens of applications, and calling them back. He isn't and I can't make him. He could save his money instead of buying junk food, and "stuff" that he wants. He could move in with his mom until he gets his act together. I can't make him do any of these things. I am unwilling to split an apartment and the rent with him. I am unwilling to pay his rent. I am unwilling to let him move in with me and my parents other than a temporary basis (< 1week). I am unwilling to drink over this!
I guess I'm just trying to see if anyone has suggestions for this situation. I know I need to detach myself to avoid violating any of the above rules that I have set for myself, but I don't know the best way to do it. I don't feel like I'm in a relationship at this point as much as I feel like a parent caring for a child. I wouldn't let him become truly homeless, but I don't know what else I can do. I can't control his life, but I almost wish it was my own situation because then at least I could run the show.
Anyways, thank you to anyone who reads this very very long winded post, and any suggestions would be helpful.