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My marriage is suffering because I'm not drinking anymore

Old 10-25-2017, 08:25 PM
  # 21 (permalink)  
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I wasn't in a relationship for a long time before I quit but the people in my life who knew me as a drinker felt threatened, scared and confronted by my decision to get sober and, with hindsight, I think thats understandable.

Continuing to drink was not an option for me no matter who's nose was put out of joint.

I'd be dead now if I'd continued.

It was my true friends who supported me even tho they might not have understood at the time - they saw I was happier healthier and more at peace sober.

I hope your wife will come to see this too, in time downpath

D
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Old 10-25-2017, 08:35 PM
  # 22 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by Dee74 View Post
I wasn't in a relationship for a long time before I quit but the people in my life who knew me as a drinker felt threatened, scared and confronted by my decision to get sober and, with hindsight, I think thats understandable.

Continuing to drink was not an option for me no matter who's nose was put out of joint.

I'd be dead now if I'd continued.

It was my true friends who supported me even tho they might not have understood at the time - they saw I was happier healthier and more at peace sober.

I hope your wife will come to see this too, in time downpath

D
I agree that it does mess with 'them'. My ex would get mad at me for going to another AA meeting(when I was court ordered)because I'd already been enough for the week. It was crazy! Then she said "I think I need to go myself. I have a problem." She never went. I really hope she finds herself and peace in life. Sorry,OP..She's been on my mind since that text..Damn alchy's! We sure know how to manipulate!
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Old 10-26-2017, 12:42 AM
  # 23 (permalink)  
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Wow. Thank you all for your thoughtful responses.

As I said yesterday, this is the first thread that I have started. I am actually overwhelmed by the volume. I want to take the time to respond to all of you individually, but I don't think that is feasible. It takes me 20 minutes to write a very simple post. It would take me hours to respond to all of you in detail.

Mrs Downthepath and I actually sat up until 3am last night/this morning talking things through. I feel a lot better about it all this morning - although there are still things that we need to sort out. I think I probably chose my words quite clumsily in my first post and I now know that I was projecting a lot of my concerns onto her. I think the word 'punished' was probably misplaced. On reflection, I think that she is mourning the fact that things have changed so much. She just needs to adjust to that. We did have a lot of fun together when we drank. It is hard enough for me to accept that those days have gone and I spent years mulling it over before I took action. It's all new to her. I have confidence that she will come round once she has processed it all.

When I told her that I was contemplating opening a bottle of wine, she was absolutely horrified. She told me categorically that she would not allow me to do it. She accepts that I have a problem and that total abstinence is the only way I can deal with it. She has only drank 2 or 3 times in the last 9 weeks and they were all on social occasions out with other friends who were drinking. I don't think she is a problem drinker, but I may be wrong.

In all of our years together, neither of us have ever drank alone. It has always been quite a big thing for us. I have implored her many times since I have been abstaining to have a glass or two of wine (to assuage my own guilt, admittedly), but she has flatly refused. I think it would be quite a big step forward for us if I could convince her to have a drink with dinner. I'll work on that.

The other thing that this thread has made me realise is just how much I have changed. Things seem to be a lot more serious these days. I guess it will take time for that to even out. My moods are also very up and down in a way that they never were (or I hadn't noticed) before. Another thing is my damn clarity of thought. I used to let things slide because I just couldn't be bothered to think about them, but now every single thing needs to be evaluated and pored over. I need to turn that down a bit, too. I'm also a bit more prone to anger than I was before. Again, this will hopefully settle in time.

It all feels a bit strange, this. Like I am thinking things through - but in 'public'. It has definitely helped me though. I am truly grateful for every single response. I have read each one several times and considered them all sincerely. Writing things down for others to see also forces you to clarify things.

Right. I'm going to go now. I have only been awake for about 7 hours so far today and I have spent two of them on SR - maybe she has a point about that, too.

Thanks again, all.
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Old 10-26-2017, 02:11 AM
  # 24 (permalink)  
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I have heard of AA widows so mayber there are SR widows too? One thing I often hear partners can feel is a sense of envy. They know the drinker best, have spent years putting up with it, trying to help, they have suffered in all sorts of ways, and then along comes AA or SR, and not only seems to solve the problem, but seems to get all the attention the partner feels they should get. It is understandable , and the problem usually fixes itself as the drinker recovers and gets some balance back in their lives.

I have been married in sobriety and had two long term relationships all with women who were social drinkers.their drinking has never been an issue. They might have a wine with dinner, while I might have water or a soft drink or nothing at all. It is no big deal. My problem is not their problem, in fact it is not even a problem for me. It never occurs to me to drink, or to try and change their habits.

Another area that can be difficult for partners is that some alcoholics, dry but not recovering, can be very hard to live with. Many an AA, including me, have owned up to that one. Stopping drinking is just the beginning.
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Old 10-26-2017, 04:25 AM
  # 25 (permalink)  
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Just poured the wife a glass of wine. It was harder than I thought...
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Old 10-26-2017, 07:48 AM
  # 26 (permalink)  
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So perhaps she has a point, Downthepath?
When I stopped drinking, my spouse did too, to show support.
He wasn’t a problem drinker. I was.
I shall be forever grateful for that show of solidarity.
Good thoughts.
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Old 10-26-2017, 08:00 AM
  # 27 (permalink)  
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You know what? If she doesn't want to drink around you - let that be her decision.

You don't have to try to force a round peg into a square hole, and maybe she is really uncomfortable or maybe she really doesn't want to drink as much and sees the value in not drinking.

Let her pour her own wine at her own time if and when she wants to unless she asks you to pour it (which I'm guessing she won't because it sounds like she's sensitive.)

It's not your business. Stay in your own lane.
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Old 10-26-2017, 08:19 AM
  # 28 (permalink)  
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It's interesting, isn't it?! I wasn't expecting that at all.
I'm going to stop trying to predict the future and just watch it unfold.
Just to be clear, I didn't force it upon her - we don't work like that. It came out of our conversation from last night. It remains to be seen whether it becomes a regular occurrence, or not.
On reflection, all things considered, I am glad that she had a drink. At least now we both know that it's an option, she knows where we keep it, and I can just focus on me.
Goodnight, and thank you.
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Old 10-26-2017, 08:23 AM
  # 29 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by Downthepath View Post

I have implored her many times since I have been abstaining to have a glass or two of wine (to assuage my own guilt, admittedly), but she has flatly refused. I think it would be quite a big step forward for us if I could convince her to have a drink with dinner. I'll work on that.
This is what I am reacting to...her drinking is her side of the street.
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Old 10-26-2017, 01:37 PM
  # 30 (permalink)  
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I know it sounds harsh, but I am going to tell you something you may not want to hear. If she feels like she is being punished, it sounds like she may have an issue with drinking as well. It doesn't necessarily mean she's an alcoholic, but if she's longing for a drink she obviously has some sort of mental obsession with alcohol. If she didn't, she would be supportive of you and maybe have a girls night once a week for her cocktails. As I learn more about alcoholism and learn how "normal" people think, I see how different they think from people with alcoholism. Normal people don't having longing or cravings for drinks, or have relationships with the bottle like they "miss" it.
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Old 10-26-2017, 02:42 PM
  # 31 (permalink)  
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Hi Downthepath,
I can really relate. When I quit, my husband lost his drinking buddy and I spent hours on SR every day. SR and the good people here saved my life. He now accepts that my SR time is as important as breathing.

It's good to see you here and on the 24-hr. thread and I hope things smooth out between you and your wife. Take care...xxxx

Ps. I never pour wine for him or anyone else nor do I buy it. He's responsible for all alcohol purchases and in charge of the bar during our home parties.
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Old 10-26-2017, 03:13 PM
  # 32 (permalink)  
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While I can relate, I've got to say: I would no more pour my husband a glass of wine right now than I would strip down and dance naked in the street in the full light of day. That's preposterous. I'm an alcoholic. I don't pour.

I also don't buy, restock, organize, or keep track of any alcohol that might land in my home, and my husband knows better than to put that poison anywhere near me. And you know what? He agrees with all of it.

Just some thoughts.
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Old 10-26-2017, 03:45 PM
  # 33 (permalink)  
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Honestly, I think your priorities are misnumbered. It may sound selfish, but your sobriety should come first, not your wife's wine at dinner or her not wanting to drink alone. Deciding to quit is JUST the first step, and in my opinion, the easiest. Staying sober is the hard part and you need support from your spouse/ partner.
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Old 10-26-2017, 06:34 PM
  # 34 (permalink)  
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Thanks again, all.

Bimini, my response to you may have come across as a bit curt. Apologies. That was not my intention at all. I really respect your opinion. I just didn't want anyone to think that I'd marched to the fridge, poured her a glass of wine and thrust it into her face.

We are just working out the parameters here. It is very early days. It's a little bit like having our first child. We just had to try stuff and see what worked. We got the hang of it in the end.

Giving up drinking is the most selfish thing I've ever done - which makes it a bit difficult to get my head around.

Thanks again.
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Old 10-26-2017, 07:21 PM
  # 35 (permalink)  
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Thatís a good analogy about a first child. Iíd run with that as, given time, youíll both get used to the new situation.
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Old 10-26-2017, 08:04 PM
  # 36 (permalink)  
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One of the best threads ive read on here.

Good on you Downthepath, sounds like youve got a level head
and your taking advice. Sounds like your moving in the right direction
and good job on your sobriety.

It can be difficult for people around you to respond to the new you.
Unfortunately for us,where still working it out too.

I have the mood swings too. I think it's important to try and slow down sometimes and not pile the plate too high.

Good job and keep going.

Bimini's comment about the inner toddler was gold.
Sounds like my partner sometimes actually.

All the best mate.
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Old 10-26-2017, 08:10 PM
  # 37 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by Downthepath View Post
Giving up drinking is the most selfish thing I've ever done - which makes it a bit difficult to get my head around.
This is true. I thought I was being selfish(and was) by my continued drinking,then my spiral out of control. I was told at my 1st meeting that it is going to 'be all about me for a while'..I didn't think it would,but boy was I wrong! I'm probably more 'selfish' now than ever...and I need to be. When I was drinking I was somewhat of a pushover just agreeing to pretty much any and everything. I was 'that guy..call him,he'll go'..No more. I feel like I've aged,mentally,about 15yrs. I'm pretty much about myself and my family now. Business and friends come next. I'm not currently dating and not planning on it for a while,as I don't really have the time or headspace for anyone else at the moment and that feels very freeing. I was letting myself be pulled in so many different directions,while actively drinking, I'm not surprised I went off the deep end with the booze,drugs,ect.. When I look at the old me,now, I honestly don't know how I'm still alive and somewhat sane. Hang in there.
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Old 10-26-2017, 08:55 PM
  # 38 (permalink)  
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My thought in regard to the SR comment is - how obsessed are you, really? If you are spending hours upon end (or even intermittently) posting and reading, whether on your computer or phone, that could be an issue.

As you have a good relationship otherwise, I'd suggest asking her what would make this online fascination less bothersome for her. One thing might be to stay in the same room with her while you are online. Maybe she can get her own account and read your posts (if you're comfortable with that)? Perhaps you can limit your time to say... I don't know, 15 minutes in the morning and an hour at night?

People have been known to develop inappropriate relationships online (present company included), so minimizing the appearance of stealth is important.

Just my thoughts...

O
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Old 10-27-2017, 04:34 AM
  # 39 (permalink)  
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Thanks for the kind words, Stronger and Oldmate. I appreciate them. You feel like an old mate, Oldmate.

I am the bloke who can't say 'No', DontRemember. Always have been, moving towards not being any longer. Let's see how we go. It's quite liberating, as you say. My wife has invited a friend over with her two kids to watch a movie with our muppets this evening. I have removed myself to the bedroom and am catching up on here. I would NEVER have done that in the past. I would have sat with them all, awkwardly making small talk until the wine kicked in. I much prefer this option.

Thanks for your observations too, Obladi. I have spent a lot of time on here. We are talking 2/3 hours per day. I would have definitely relapsed otherwise. I think she's getting that now. I have invited her to read each and every post I have ever made, but she has declined - even though I'm sure she'd secretly like to. Although I'm not sure she'd like this thread so much. I would like her to see the kind of things that we share and that there's no question of any impropriety. Perhaps that's my next thing to work on.

It really does do me a lot of good to share all of this with you. Thank you.
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Old 10-27-2017, 06:27 AM
  # 40 (permalink)  
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if your wife is really feeling "punished" by your sobriety - then it's possible she's got her own challenges with alcohol addiction on some level.

that potential aside, I can share that my wife still drinks, though only one rare drink on the odd occasion. She was never much of a drinker.

At first it was a challenge - more for me than for her - but as my sobriety deepened, her choices regarding alcohol weren't an issue. Maybe you can just have an open honest conversation with your wife about the importance to you BOTH of your sobriety, reassure her of your love for her and your support for her making her own decisions about alcohol. Possibly, an honest and open conversation about it and you giving her an overt assurance that you're not judging her or harboring expectations of her could help.

Focus on you. Focus on YOUR sobriety and being the best man you can - and let her know that's your intent and why you're doing it. "I understand in some ways this feels like a loss for you, but I really believe that the sober husband you'll be gaining will be worth the down side..... we can work through this without you feeling you have to not drink".

Maybe a counselor would be helpful.

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