Alcohol and infidelity - SoberRecovery : Alcoholism Drug Addiction Help and Information
Go Back   SoberRecovery : Alcoholism Drug Addiction Help and Information > Alcoholism Information > Alcoholism
Register Blogs FAQ Members List Calendar Arcade Mark Forums Read

LinkBack Thread Tools
Old 12-28-2008, 12:42 AM   #1 (permalink)

Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Springfield, MA
Posts: 36

Alcohol and infidelity

I would like to know about your feelings about infidelity and how alcohol influences it or if it is simply a character issue.

I'm divorced now. I go to Alanon to help me. However, I still have this burning question. Is infidelity something that is OK with alcoholics?

I tend to think it's a combination of bad character and alcohol.

My ex drank during our 30 + years of marriage. In the beginning 1-2 6 packs of beer daily, then the last 15 years or so, 1 - 2 bottles of wine daily and then in addition to this, more recently, a generous glass of cognac every night!

I never knew about alcoholism. There wasn't any drinking in my family when I grew up....other problems, but there was never alcohol in the house!

Now my ex is with his "buddy" of 20 years. It's a relationship I never knew about! Looking back, now I see what a charming liar he was. He had to be in control and could get away with it with his charm. He also held, and still holds, a rather good job. I guess you could say, he was a great actor and compulsive liar.

When I accidently found out about his "buddy" our marriage was over.

He has had a DWI three years ago....was forced to go for detox...but after that, still drank....but had it under better control....

Again, did I marry a man without character right from the beginning or did the alcohol change him????

I know, forget about him, move on....I am, but I still would like to hear from you about this question.....

Jewels is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-28-2008, 01:16 AM   #2 (permalink)

Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Southern California
Posts: 75
Not necessarily.

My drinking truly escalated after my partner-at-the-time engaged in an indiscretion with an ex-girlfriend. I was on my way down, for sure, but he wasn't the alcoholic, I was. Since he lied about this indiscretion for over a month before finally coming clean, and being that it happened a mere 3 days after we flew across the country in the name of his asking my mother and father for my hand in marriage, I guess we both felt really lost.

I think people who are checked out on or of anything can potentially compartmentalize and act out without considering the consequences. We can deny that there will be consequences, by sweeping whatever under the rug and living in the moment of, 'hey, I'll pretend it didn't happen, and I will believe the lie until it is the truth'. I know that alcohol really messed with my sexual behavior, and that's been on my mind a lot today.

Some people just don't see infidelity as a form of betrayal. I do. Having unknowingly been 'the other woman' more than once and turning into a mega-witch upon finding out, I've had to work on choosing partners who are emotionally, physically and mentally available to me.

Not all alcoholics are bad apples that lack character. A lot of us just don't know how to cope with pain, discomfort or a lack of reciprocity in relationships.

Heck, you don't even have to be an addict to engage in these behaviors. You might be an addict on another spectrum.

Take care of yourself, though. We're here for you.
YaySartre is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-28-2008, 06:54 AM   #3 (permalink)
On the road of happy destiny
StrongBird's Avatar

Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: OHIO
Posts: 210
Originally Posted by YaySartre View Post

Not all alcoholics are bad apples that lack character. A lot of us just don't know how to cope with pain, discomfort or a lack of reciprocity in relationships.
I agree with everything YaySartre said, especially the part I quoted above. I'm also coming out of a relationship that was frequently peppered with infidelity on his part, not mine. (I'm the alcoholic, not him.) In my situation, neither one of us was blameless yet neither one of us was soley responsible for the split, either.

To answer your question directly, infidelity is most certainly NOT ok with this alcoholic. I've never strayed in any relationship. Not even close. I think that both drinking and infidelity can be ways that one "copes" or, more accurately, doesn't cope with life... but I don't think that alcoholics are anymore likely to cheat than normal drinkers.

Take care of yourself -- I know how gut-wrenching it can be.
If you don't have baggage, you haven't traveled.
StrongBird is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-28-2008, 07:07 AM   #4 (permalink)

Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Springfield, MA
Posts: 36
Wow, it really is comforting to be able to have someone say, "Take care of yourself." People do care here and I thank you for taking the time to give me your perspective. I hurt even now, but Alanon has helped me take care of me. I even had a great Christmas and I was alone. I have come a long way.

Again thanks for your responses. (This is the first time I've posted!)
Jewels is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-28-2008, 08:09 AM   #5 (permalink)
bona fido dog-lover
least's Avatar

Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: eastern USA
Posts: 65,619
Blog Entries: 32
I don't think alcoholism 'causes' infidelity. I had an abusive bf years ago. He always blamed his physical and emotional abuse of me on being drunk. But that was just an excuse, as if he wasn't responsible for his actions cause of being drunk. That's a load of BS and I finally was able to see him as he really was: selfish and abusive, drunk or not.
I'd rather live in my car with my dogs than live in a castle without them.

Dogs may not be our whole lives, but they make our lives whole.

Don't wait for the Last Judgement. It takes place every day. -Albert Camus

Find the good and praise it. - Alex Haley
least is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 12-28-2008, 07:17 PM   #6 (permalink)

Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Highlands, TX
Posts: 1,192
Blog Entries: 1
This topic comes up fairly regularly. Enough so that perhaps it should be a sticky either here or on the Friends and Family Board. BTW, have you checked that board out? It's a good way to get support for you.

Alcoholism and infidelity are NOT mutually exclusive. You can have someone who is not alcoholic who is a DOG (bigtime cheater). You have alcoholics who would never dream of cheating. I happen to be one of those. My husband is another and I know others.

Some people use their drinking to condone bad behavior. I call BS on that. It's more like their lack of caring, their selfishness and selfcenteredness.

Can an alcoholic be a cheater? Sure. Can a sober person be a cheater? Sure.

I'm sorry you find yourself in this position. Try to take the focus off of him and onto you. Work on your own recovery and life will become better for you.

Big hugs,
Kellye C.
Sobriety Date 8/8/04 - By God's Grace and A.A.
Kellye C is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-28-2008, 07:30 PM   #7 (permalink)
It`s ok to stay sober

Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Central NC
Posts: 20,201
sorry to hear of your delimna but I am glad to see you are in ala non.
I used sex,drugs and booze to try and fix what was going on inside me.
When the pain of life got to me I was off for a fix,without regard of my wife.I am a alcoholic also,and I know I lacked morals.I was a dishonest,selfish,self centered drunk.Today I would not run around on my wife.She is a blessing from God,always has been,I just could not/would not see it before.She is in ala non and I am in AA.

She has shown a lot of forgiveness to me.I know I am responsible for what I did and I am making amends daily to her.
Best wishes Jewel,and Happy New Year!
there are no strangers in AA,just friends I haven`t met yet
Tommyh is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to Tommyh For This Useful Post:
HurtingAgain (09-28-2010)
Old 12-28-2008, 10:59 PM   #8 (permalink)

Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Springfield, MA
Posts: 36
Thanks Tommy, for your response. My husband's infidelity almost destoyed me and Alanon was what helped me the most to get back on my feet. Three years later I'm stronger, but there are still scars. Betrayal cuts deeply. The other person must be hurting so badly inside to become so self-centered and to hurt someone who really cares for them.

I have learned that I am a pretty special person, in spite of my husband's rejection, and I have now many new hobbies. I have found out what my interests are, reading and music, and found new friends who perhaps have more of my interests. I have had to make decisions and tackle problems that came along in my life on my own. From these challenges, I have experienced mostly successes and thereby earned respect for myself. Self respect is so important. I really can say that I like myself for trying and not giving up on me....and having my higher power guide me.

I have also been able to truly thank a higher power who had to have been there through some of the life challenges that I successfully mastered pretty well these past years. Again, I could never have done them myself without the higher power. For example, I believe in miracles. A miracle can be as simple as having new friends and situations simply appear out of nowhere that help guide one through the darkness and help one see the sun again. You can't see that higher power but it's out there.....your soul feels the higher power guiding you...sending you help in various means.

I think that alcohol is like the tempts us all. Some people just get hooked faster than others and then slowly the body, the spirit and then, if it isn't too late, something happens and some get a second chance at life and crawl out ot their hole. I guess that's called reaching their bottom.

I'm not a religious freak....I'm not a fanatic. I really don't talk much about my inner yearnings and hurts. However, I am opening up here because I think that if you are trying to recover, do the AA 12 steps. You can get better and will get better, but go to your meetings, every day if you have to, and slowly, it may take a year, two years or even more, but you will get out of your deep hole that you spiraled into!

Good luck to all of you....Alanon helped me and without them and their 12 steps (AA has same steps) I would have crawled in a hole and died.....spiritually and physically.

Thank you for all your advice and thoughts on infidelity and alcohol. I would still welcome comments from others on the subject.
Jewels is offline   Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to Jewels For This Useful Post:
HurtingAgain (09-28-2010)

Currently Active Users Viewing this Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off


All times are GMT -7. The time now is 07:18 AM.