According to him he doesn't have a drinking problem. Yeah whatever.
I am still on the fence in regards to "where" we are going as a couple.
This so sucks.
It certainly messed up our sex life. I couldn't stand to be that close to him because he smelled SO horrible (cheap cheap beer). He was usually drunk by the time I got home from work, sometimes by the time I got home for lunch (ran his own business out of our home and in the last year of our relationship started drinking in the morning). I refused to sleep with him when he was drunk, so we only had sex on the weekends before he started drinking. Sad. Part of me thinks that helped with his A...SHE didn't care if he was liquored up all the time, but I did.
For me, the A was kind of the straw that broke the camel's back. I had been dealing with his alcoholism for a few years--the last 2 were the absolute worst. Horrible. Intolerable and crazy-making. He could not be there for me, he could not provide (I always made more money but his income was pathetic), he could not be responsible or honest or respectful. Alcohol and his alcoholic friends seemed to be all that mattered to him.
So, although he was officially in love with EA woman and wanted to be with her, he was unsure if it was the right choice and of course he was loaded morning to night (how can you make a good decision????).
I made him leave because enough was enough. I felt used up and spit out and utterly exhausted.
I wish I had found al-anon so much sooner than I did, which wasn't until XWS told me he didn't know if he loved me anymore, 2 months before we split. Part of me thinks that if I had, I would have handled the alcoholism so much better and maybe he wouldn't have been so bad b/c I wouldn't have focused so entirely on him and his problems, wouldn't have been trying to make him feel bad/guilty, etc, resulting in him drinking even more.
But, the alcoholism contributed to the act of cheating, of that I am sure. So what can you do? Continue to live in fear that another drunken bar night will result in him making out again with a woman at the bar?
It's so sad. Alcoholism destroyed the man I love and destroyed our relationship. I hope for his sake that he can get it together, but I'm not so sure he even wants to quit. I think part of him does b/c he knows what it's done to his life, to us, etc...but you have to really really want to in order to follow through.
I fear he is lost. It makes me so sad for him. And for me. If only, if only, if only...
LTA with woman 'friend' 06-07
EA with woman 'friend' '07
D-Day for both: 10/07
XWS moved out for OW#2: 11/07
XWS wants to possibly R: 2/08
I fear that our relationship will eventually come to an end because of the drinking also. I haven't went to Alanon yet but I have called to see where a local meeting is - a big step for me. I've been kicking and screaming about "why do I have to go to a damn meeting - I'm not the drunk" but I'm beginning to realize that Alanon can probably help ME with ME and help take my focus off of him.
Speaking of focus, just recently I have begun to take care of ME more and have focused more on me and my life rather than him and what he's doing - he's noticing and doesn't like it much but I don't really care at this point.
I love this man with all my heart and I've held onto so much "hope" that he would change - well my "hope" is running pretty low these days and it's changing the way I feel about "us". I've been very honest and have told him how I feel but he's not listening.
Whatever happens will happen I suppose and I know from past experiences that I will and can survive on my own. After I pick myself up off the floor - I will move on and find my inner strength again and will make this life what I want it to be. I guess the only thing that's keeping me with him now - is the fact that yes I'm still in love with him and I'm still holding on to the small amount of "hope" that I have left.
He still has that alcoholic personality...MC thinks he's addicted to sex. Of course he blames me for having to look outside the home for sex (alcoholics love to blame everyone but themselves, don't they?)
I have tried Al-Anon twice in the past but it felt too clique-y. Anyone else have better experience?
Best of luck and (((hugs))) to you all.
D-Day 1: Nov 2004
D-Day 2: Feb 10, 2007
D-Day3: Oct. 29, 2007
how stupid AM i?
Kids: 2 girls 9 and 12
Married 18 yrs.
It was just darned uncomfortable, too. I went with my daughter hoping she'd get something out of it and she basically said she wasn't ready to deal with it yet. OOOOOKKKKKAAAAAYYYYY.
Back to the sex thing, my EX had a lot of trouble getting it up and then pulling the trigger which I blamed on his drinking. I didn't know at the time it was because he'd fallen in love with someone else. Because I swept the drinking thing under the rug I didn't catch on to the infidelity for many years.
This past fall, however, I hit such a desperate low that I felt I had no choice but to go and really give it a chance--I was literally losing my mind and my relationship was falling apart. They say to attend at least 6 meetings before deciding whether or not it is for you.
After my first meeting, a very kind woman was talking to me. I told her of my issues with the 'higher power' element and she leaned in to me and said, 'I'm an atheist'. I was SO relieved!! It also turns out that she is good friends with my therapist (who also attends al-anon).
So, that was enough to get me back there and I was the girl who cried through first meetings and was the only one mid-crisis. So many people were talking serenity and how the program had helped them and how they were able to apply it to all areas of their lives, I felt like the wreck of the bunch. I was. The great things is that so many people have been where I was (and am) and they offered support and comfort in discussions after the meetings. It was a relief to be surrounded by people who know the heartbreak that is alcoholism. Friends are great, but if you don't live it, you can't really understand.
I attended several different meetings in my city before I decided on the one or two that I thought fit me best. All meetings follow the same basic format, but they are not all the same. Different personalities, different dynamics.
I really use the 'take what you like and leave the rest' suggestion. For instance, since I am not religious at all, instead of starting the Serenity Prayer with 'God grant me the serenity...' I just say, 'Grant me the serenity'. Grant MYSELF the serenity. I've noticed I'm not the only one who leaves the God part out.
In the beginning, I went to al-anon because I thought it could save my relationship. It couldn't. All it could do was save me and I'm still working on that. It's too bad he bolted because I really was starting to deal with his drinking better--stopped counting them, stopped saying anything about it, stopped making my self crazy with anger and disappointments. I started to take care of me and take the focus off of him.
Maybe he did me a favor. Right now it doesn't feel like it, but maybe time will show otherwise. He got a DUI 2 weeks after he left me. Now he lives in another city and is driving on a revoked license because he has no other way to get to work (the first full-time job he's had in 2.5 years). Sigh. He hasn't had his sentencing yet and he's scared out of his mind.
I had hoped the DUI would be enough of a kick in the pants to get him to stop, but he's still drinking. They may make him stop and he knows that...but if one is made to stop instead of doing it because of a true desire to get well, it seems likely to me that once the ban is lifted, they will begin drinking again.
Part of me hates him for what he's done to our lives (alcohol+affairs+leaving for OW). Part of me pities him for his plight. Al-anon teaches compassion for the alcoholic and that was a big lesson for me. Afterall, it is a kind of torture for them, too. I do care about him and I do want him to get well. I just want his relationship with OW to implode. LOL.
Interesting to hear, Jim and I, that your WS only started cheating when he got sober. Switching addictions, perhaps?
Oh what I would have given for a sober him. Oh how I tried. But trying (in all forms) is futile and makes the situation worse. You can either choose to stay and do what you can to make sure YOU are healthy, or you can leave. But you can never bank on the alcoholic quitting--it just may never ever happen. Sad but true.
Once in a great while, XWS would take a day or two off from drinking. Usually on a weekend.
Each time I was SO happy...I showered him with love and affection, so grateful to have my love 'back', so so happy.
Each time I got my hopes up that he would finally quit--see, he could do it!!
But it never lasted.
I now think that XWS did it purposefully to 'throw me a bone' here and there. To give me hope and a happy day here or there so that I would continue to stay around.
Time and time again I was disappointed. Hopes up, hopes dashed, hopes up, hopes dashed.
I think that in order to be in a relationship with an alcoholic, you really just have to give up on expecting that they'll ever stop--certainly do not count on it ever changing. I know it fuels hope when they take a day off but it really doesn't mean anything.
Sorry if that was too much a bummer. I just went for a ride on that rollercoaster one too many times.
And yeah I kinda think it's the ol' "throw the bone" thing myself.
It's just so pleasant when he doesn't drink. But the other side of the coin is when he does drink again - it just adds another brick to the ol' resentment wall. My wall is gettin' pretty high here lately.
I know how incredibly wonderful it is to have them sober even for one day (god, that's sad) and how you hope hope hope that you could have that person all the time. It was so easy for me to be affectionate and loving...made me very much aware of how different I was towards him when he was drunk. After I joined al-anon my behavior toward him changed but it was too late. Now I know he was already 'in love'.
You are right about changing your expectations...that is exactly what al-anon would teach you to do.
Past behavior is the best indicator of future behavior so for your own sake, accept that you cannot rely on him to be sober. If you have a nice sober day, good--but just assume it's an aberration. If he proves you wrong?...great!...but you won't be so disappointed when he repeats the same behavior again and again.
You'll drive yourself insane doing that. I did!
I *still* hope my XWS will pull his head out of his drunken *ss and get help. He *said* recently that he wants to quit, but haven't we all learned that saying isn't doing? He also *said* he was faithful to me and had never cheated and never would. Ha. Cry.
Sigh. It's hard to accept that some people are simply not reliable, honest, honorable, self-aware, etc.
I'm still working on acceptance. And lettting go.
I think he'd like to believe that alcohol was a big factor in my A. It was a factor but not the biggest one.
We have been sober since Thanksgiving and it ain't easy at all.
I had to go to classes for a previous DUI which didn't do much as I continued my drinking but the second DUI I got right before thanksgiving was a real wake up call.
It isn't as hard as you think to stop drinking. But you have to want to stop.
Otherwise it's just all talk.
I think my WH liked to get drunk because, he could still get an E, and 'LAST' forever... it wasn't 'fun' for me, that's for sure.
As to the Al-anon thing...I do think you have to find the right group...I went for about 7 months one to two times a week, and did not find it as helpful as the reading I have done...it is true that one of the best benefits of the group is being surrounded by people that have been going thru similar things...But to listen to an hour of people spouting slogans and recounting their serenity and warning you to only quote AA approved literature...well, it left me feeling short.
Jim&I...you have just been the victim of what is known as "The 13th Step" its not unusual...Sucks doesn't it.
While AA is a respected organization, and has worked wonders for many people, when you get down to brass tacks, the success rate isn't all that fabulous... It is, after all, a form of group self-therapy...led by alcoholics....
MARRIAGE ON THE ROCKS by Janet Geringer Woititz. is a book I found helpful....in it, she describes that often an Alcoholic will add on OW to his addiction to Alcohol. I have gotten into trouble with mods for being of the opinion that many people on this site are struggling with chemical or alcohol addiction that hasn't been identified.
There are lots of things I did not know about alcoholics until I started reading about the disease. Here are some of them, and most of them are true about my WH: Most alcoholics are men, many start sneaking drinks in their teen-age years, a high percentage also started smoking in their teen-age years , most alcoholics have an unusual ability to 'hold their liquor'...they can drink their buddies under the table and remain sober, 80% of alcoholics hold a job, Alcoholics seek out people and groups 'beneath' their social station so they can 'feel better' about themselves. Alcoholism starts to become evident for many people when they hit the age of 35... There is a higher number of alcoholic men that are left handed..Often there are 'cross addictions' gambling, pornography, smoking, drugs, sex. Alcoholics often have a 'sweet-tooth.' Do any of these things ring true with your WS's????
When I started reading I kept shouting "BINGO!!!" Some of the craziness was, unfortunately, making sense.
It is true, you cannot make your WS stop drinking. Theue have to see it as a problem and find help to stop. Sometimes an intervention can be done...(AA wouldn't agree)
My husband went to work and had a staff meeting at 8:30 a.m. reeking of wine and was incoherent. He doesn't remember doing it.(or admitt to bein incoherant) Miraculously, he did not get fired, but he should have.
He was doing other classic alcoholic tricks....he told himself he would "only drink on the weekends...would only drink white wine, would only have 2 glasses of wine in an evening (mind you, he was drinking 2 -10 oz glasses which is the equivelent of 5 servings, not the 2 he 'thought' he was having.
Then he started to 'hide' bottles from me. I could smell vodka on his breath, with out even trying, I discovered WH slipping out the back door of our house while he was cooking breakfast on a Sunday morning and taking a swig from his bottle that he had stashed in the back seat of his car (real smart!!!) He would keep an open bottle in his desk and stay late @ work and drink by himself and drive home an hour after work.
AA is but one avenue...Check out a site called Rational Recovery...(They waste alot of breath complaining about AA....AA is not as sucessful as they would have you think, and the RR site gets into that.)
The problem with a WS hitting rock bottom as AA folks prescribe is this: The destruction they cause on their way down, (divorce, betrayal, std's, car-wrecks, liver & brain damage, etc., etc., etc.) The biggest hurdle I see for most chronic alcoholics is that by the time the drinking is problematic, their brain chemistry is SOOOOOOOO screwed up, they are not able to make logical decisions...
The rock Bottom "theory" is that the alcoholic will live through their rock bottom experience and get sober long enough to figure out that drinking is not working for them, trot off to an AA meeting and do the steps.(Without doing the 13th Step)
Alot of people don't realize that there are tons of 'functional Alcohoics' running around. One of my friends father was a lifelong alcoholic. Held a job, owned a business, lived to his 80's, made his family miserable for 50 years. His liver had to be made of steel.
Not all drunks are pan-handling for change on the corner. Some of them are in the house next door, getting looped nite after nite.
Al-anon spends lots of time telling you to mind your own business but doesn't tell you much about the disease of Alcoholism. Their attitude is "stop worrying about the Alcoholic and take care of yourself" This is true. But I have found it enormously helpful to try to understand what the hell is going on w/my chemically dependant husband...
The other sites I would have you look at are: http://www.preventragedy.com/ and http://health.msn.com/centers/mentalhealth/articlepage.aspx?cp-documentid=100162107>1=10008
The other part of this puzzle that you should consider is that your children are part of your WS's gene pool.
There is a high possibility that your children could struggle with Alcoholism. I have had to have the talk w/ my 22 year old daughter...
Good luck to you all....
Alcoholics seek out people and groups 'beneath' their social station so they can 'feel better' about themselves.
Boy - I know this one all too well. It is SO true.
he told himself he would "only drink on the weekends
Yep - I've heard this many, many times.
I'm in a disgusted mood today over the whole business. Lately, my whole thought process centers around "should I stay or should I go". Not a pleasant place to be mind you.
My husband is an alcoholic. He does not admit that, only that he "had" a problem but that he can control it. I am having serious doubts about that.
Prior and during the A, my H drank A LOT and every day. It was becoming a huge issue on its own but was compounded by the A. Post D-day, I asked him to quit drinking which he did for a month and half. At that point, he said that it was never his intention to quit drinking altogether and that he would like to be able to have 1-2 drinks at social events, and a drink at home after a long day's work. I told him that I was uncomfortable with it, but that I was not his mother and that he had to "prove" to me that he could control his drinking.
Well then December hit. Not a good time to restart drinking. I chalked up December to the stress of the holidays and said that I would sit back and see what January brought.
Well here we are at the end of January and I decided to do a quick calculation of alcohol consumption of my H.
H is a beer man, and he only buys one brand, so it's pretty easy to calculate how many he's had in a month. I took our VISA statement, selected the liquor store purchases and then subtracted my purchases (a bottle of wine here and there). I made sure to take MY stuff out in case I ever need to give these sheets to him.
Anyways, calculated the purchases into how many cases of beer would be bought from it, multiplied it by number of beers in a case and divided by days in the month.
H drank on average every day in January 5 beers.
ON AVERAGE EVERY DAY!!!!!
I told H that I would not count his beers, but now that I have, oh my god.
I don't know what to do. I told him that if he could not control his drinking, that I would be outta here.
If someone has any advice, I would so appreciate it.
"I like long walks, especially when they are taken by people who annoy me."
I told him that if he could not control his drinking, that I would be outta here
Well it's been my experience that "ultimatums" don't really work and especially if you don't follow thru with what you promised.
It's really up to you to decide if you are willing to continue on with him or if you want out. It's not an easy decision...I'm trying to make it myself.
XWS went to AA a few times and hated it. His psychiatrist recommended he try Rational Recovery. He hasn't, though.
At the time we broke up and for the year+ prior, XWS was drinking 24 beers a day on most days! Sometimes more, sometimes less. He is 37.
He was so drunk when he admitted to me that he was in EA with OW (current girlfriend) that he didn't remember having told me the next day--he didn't understand why I was being so cold to him in the morning. His alcoholism was at such a point that I didn't even realize he had been that drunk.
So f*cking sad. By the time I got wise to the fact that I needed to change my own attitude and expectations...he was in love.
I don't miss living with alcoholism at all. My life is so peaceful compared to what it was when he was here. But I still miss him--the him before it got bad, the him I'd see in the times he was sober, the him I hoped he'd become again.
In the end of us, sobriety was extremely rare. Drinks by 9:00 a.m. He lost all interest in me. And I am wonderful.