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my boyfriend is a very functional alcoholic

Old 06-28-2010, 01:31 PM
  # 21 (permalink)  
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He doesnt deny that he is.

I have never heard him say, "I am an alcoholic"

But I have mentioned it casually, and he's never denied it.
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Old 06-28-2010, 02:48 PM
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Why don't you start with your first basic concern? You don't want your kids to grow up seeing a beer can in his hand 24/7. That is a really valid request and you are perfectly within reason to ask him to either drink when the kids are not around, or not show them the round the clock drinking.

Yes, I know that opens up another can of worms, which is you might be asking him to drink secretly, but, you maybe work on that as step 2.

Your request to remove the constant beer can attached to the palm of his hand may stimulate some thought there, and it can only be good.
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Old 06-28-2010, 03:04 PM
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He is obviously using alcohol for a reason. It's only a matter of time before you find out why and will have to deal with it as a couple. At 7 months, everything is still new, exciting, and fresh.

Do you want your kids around alcohol? Will he stop drinking for a day when he has to take care of the kids? As is, can you see him as a father with his current drinking problem?

The alcoholism is his problem that doesn't have anything to do with you. This will change over time. It will affect you and your kids more and more.

What are you getting out of this relationship?

Have you talked to him seriously about your concern?

All questions to consider.
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Old 06-28-2010, 07:25 PM
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Do you want your kids around alcohol?
No I dont. Im not a hardcore, "My kids can never see alcohol" person, but as a daily crutch? No. I do not want them conditioned to think drinking beer every day is fine and normal or a way to 'cope' with life. As a person without a drinking problem I dont even fully understand how drinking helps a person cope.

Will he stop drinking for a day when he has to take care of the kids?
I have no idea.

As is, can you see him as a father with his current drinking problem?
yes and no.

As a person, how he acts? He's great. He's really really good to them. I witness really good parenting ideas coming from him every day and he's a 'doer' with good work ethics, so while he DOES help me parent, "Let's pick up this game before color crayons come out" he does not take part in punishing and if he runs across a situation where he needs to say anything he'll usually say, "Your mom should deal with this." He has never yelled, talked badly to them or done anything I dont like. and I AM an eagle eying person about that stuff. My kids really like him. I am totally fine with how he acts towards the kids.

I DO think that I do not want to set my kids up to see him spiral down. They have such respect and good feelings for him now. I wouldnt want them to see him die because of an alcohol related issue either.

Also, being they like him, I dont want them to think his way of drinking is fine. I do think about these things and they are important to me.

The alcoholism is his problem that doesn't have anything to do with you. This will change over time. It will affect you and your kids more and more.
I believe you.

What are you getting out of this relationship
?

This is where my own confusion comes in. How can I really LIKE an alcoholic so much?
He treats me very well. He's not a sugar daddy lol , he responsibly lives within his means and doesnt buy my love or anything. So its not (that I can think of) that I am getting something dysfunctional or some void filled in myself. I nearly have a degree in social work so I have plenty of knowledge about what dysfunction looks like. He's very considerate of me. He's very sweet to me. I like his character. I really like him as a person. He's very honest and doesnt sugar coat anything.

Like: we've had open discussions about his life and he has said that he has great regrets about the kind of person he's been and choices he's made and that he refuses to treat someone that way (he didnt hit anyone or anything, but he DID use to party, not come home, pass out at friends houses and not call his wife and say where he was, etc) and that he refuses to accept someone treating him like crap either. He wants to be settled and happy and peaceful.

To him this is a huge step up (and he's been like this for the last 8-10 years). He counts it as a big step in the right direction that the drunk behavior he use to have.. he will not do anymore. The drunk behavior he accepted from other people and the dysfunction it caused, he will not participate in anymore.

Of course, the beer is still in his hand. He's just a nice older gentleman now. Our time IS very peaceful and loving. He's very reliable, I could never imagine him even being an hour late from work without calling me to tell me.

Have you talked to him seriously about your concern?
I have not. We have had VERY minimal things to say about his drinking. I dont know why I have chosen that. I guess because everything else is so good? Im at the point where I want to now, not because anything is "bad" or because anything has worsened, but because Im at the point where I want to either begin feeling like we will be together forever .. or we wont. If we are, there has to be a different ending than where he's going now. Either he's with me on that or he isnt. I'm not so enmeshed that I cant back out now, in a year? Maybe it wouldnt be so "easy". It wouldnt be EASY now because I genuinely like him as a person and feel care and love for him. But I could do it.

He has shown me enough good character that I dont believe he will put any anger towards me or make me feel like Im bad. If anything he'll just say he cant or doesnt want to quit.

If that happens, I have to chose to continue on towards the future I want for me and my kids.
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Old 06-28-2010, 07:27 PM
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If that happens, I have to chose to continue on towards the future I want for me and my kids.
I dont want to sound cold and calculating. I dread having to end our relationship, I really really love him, but I also know that sometimes you have to do what you have to do.
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Old 06-28-2010, 07:45 PM
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You don't sound cold and calculating. You sound like you really thinking things through. Your kids are lucky to have you as their mother.
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Old 06-28-2010, 08:06 PM
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I agree with seeker7.

Just because a person is an alcoholic doesn't mean that he/she is automatically a jerk or a flake. Some of the warmest people I've met have drinking problems. They are in pain, frustrated with life, and predisposed to the condition.

If he's stayed out all night before and not called his ex-wives, what makes you think he wouldn't do the same thing to you once the newness of the relationship wanes?

It's one thing to want a peaceful life and to settle down. It's another thing to actually commit to what it takes to get there.

If you trust him, I'd talk with him about your concerns. Start there. The way he responds to your concern will tell a lot about where he is. Then you'll have something to work with if you choose to.

Sounds like he's medicating himself via alcohol and not dealing with the issues that contribute to his alcoholism. Sooner or later these issue with manifest in your relationship (unless he deals with them).
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Old 06-28-2010, 08:11 PM
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Good luck to you.
I don't know the full details of your story but I have hope for you as it sounds like you both really love each other and in the end I think you will work it out.
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Old 06-28-2010, 09:18 PM
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If he's stayed out all night before and not called his ex-wives, what makes you think he wouldn't do the same thing to you once the newness of the relationship wanes?
I guess I feel trust about it because he made this choice for himself long before me. He didnt make this choice for me, he made the choice that he didnt like his own character and wanted to change it. That was 10 years ago. He had an 8 year relationship after that (after the ex wife he did those things to) and while I havent questioned his friends, "the good ol' days" have came up and nothing they have said has ever made me think this was recent behavior, it all coincides with what he's told me.
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Old 06-28-2010, 09:51 PM
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Just checking in to see if you have talked to him yet? Hope all is well.
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Old 06-28-2010, 10:33 PM
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Originally Posted by incognito70 View Post
I guess I feel trust about it because he made this choice for himself long before me. He didnt make this choice for me, he made the choice that he didnt like his own character and wanted to change it. That was 10 years ago. He had an 8 year relationship after that (after the ex wife he did those things to) and while I havent questioned his friends, "the good ol' days" have came up and nothing they have said has ever made me think this was recent behavior, it all coincides with what he's told me.
I think the best thing to do would be to honestly talk to him about your concerns. You owe it to yourself and to your partner. Honesty is always a + for relationships. He might not even know his drinking bothers you.
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