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Old 11-17-2017, 07:48 AM
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Newbie to this...

My husband is an alcoholic. He quit drinking on the 12th of November. He attended a meeting for the first time "willingly" on November 13th. He's been to AA before; due to his 5th OWI back in 2006. We have been married for 18 years. I have been begging and pleading with him for years to pay attention to our marriage and to me. I finally talked him into going back to marriage counseling about a month ago - yes we have been before and now that I look back on it, it was always when his drinking was out of control again. This is our third time down the marriage counseling road. Counselor got right to it and challenged "us" to quit drinking for a month - we went back to see him two weeks after that challenge and my husband said that he had not had a drink. . . lie. After that second meeting we discussed trust, and forgiveness. Mind you my husband didn't (and maybe still doesn't) believe that our marriage challenges revolve around his addiction. So he agreed that he needed to work on getting me to trust him again, and I needed to work on forgiveness. Well, I felt SO good when we left that session, we went home and made dinner together and then he disappeared all of a sudden. I went downstairs and found him in the garage - where he was using and then looked me right in the eye and lied to me about it while the evidence was right there. I feel so stupid most of the time; as I don't understand how he can think that I am so stupid as to not see what is going on.
I told him before we went back to counseling that I am at the end of my rope and was considering divorce. That didn't make him stop drinking and lying to me. It wasn't until I finally found a time when he was sober (which was November 12th); that he finally figured out I was serious and ready to take action on divorce. Then all of a sudden he is going to AA meetings and has AA contacts, etcetera.
Why am I more scared at this point than ever? I got home last night and told him that I wanted a divorce; to which, of course, he said but he's not drinking now, etcetera.
I am SO torn up right now I just don't know which way to turn. So I turned to this website.
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Old 11-17-2017, 09:44 AM
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I'm sorry for your situation.

If you want a divorce, it's probably a good idea to speak with the marriage counsellor about your feelings. Also, you might want to speak with an attorney and get an idea about what rights you would have and how to go about it.

I would also suggest that you check out AlAnon in your area which would be a support for you.

Hopefully your husband will make the choice to seek support for himself.
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Old 11-17-2017, 09:51 AM
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I suppose it's scary letting yourself have hope as the risk is that you'll end up disappointed.

Have you considered support for yourself at all? AlAnon or similar?

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Old 11-17-2017, 10:40 AM
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Yes, I am hoping to attend an AlAnon meeting this weekend. I am just so very busy - work 45+ hours a week, working on my bachelor degree, take care of my dad who is in assisted living facility but is VERY demanding -- I only have a certain amount of time available. Thanks for the suggestion.
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Old 11-17-2017, 11:01 AM
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You really are busy. Kudos to getting your degree.

Thing is, he might actually be trying in AA, or it's just BS and he's doing it so he can continue to be married and to drink.

One way to tell if he's serious is that he get a sponsor and start working the steps, if he isn't already. It's much harder to hide in AA if you're accountable and regularly talking (hopefully honestly) to someone about your using who is taking the time to help you get and remain sober. You can't make him do this, but you can suggest that he do so.

Insist that all alcohol is removed from the house, and look carefully in every place where he might be hiding it.

This is kind of harsh, but obtain a breathalizer and make it clear that he has to allow you to test him at any time. Parents do this with kids. You can tell him that you trust HIM, but you don't trust alcohol and his addiction. It may be easier to separate him from his addiction. Substance abuse takes on a life of it's own and is difficult to impossible, once entrenched, to control solely with willpower and good intentions. If we could, there would be far fewer substance abusers in the world.

The above are just possible suggestions that I might attempt if I felt the marriage was worth saving. They might indicate that you are completely serious and will not tolerate drinking and especially lying about it.

Deciding to bail is certainly an option.

You will get far more information at your Al-Anon meeting. Don't be afraid to talk to someone after the meeting about your specific situation, they will be far more helpful as they've been there.

Personally I've never been in a relationship with an addict/alcoholic unless I was in the same boat (completely self-destructive relationship, btw). I can't imagine what a sober person would have gone through trying to maintain a relationship with me when I was still drinking/using.

Remember you have support here and in Al-Anon when you start. Be true to yourself, and don't lose sight of your needs in this relationship as you navigate a difficult situation.

Best of luck!
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ScaryTime (11-17-2017)
Old 11-17-2017, 12:19 PM
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All good stuff you suggest. I am tired of being the "parent" and don't want to have to do all of that stuff. Getting the alcohol out of the house is not a problem. At this point, however, I am done with chasing him around trying to figure out if he has been drinking or not and whether or not he is telling me the truth. He confessed this week to me some of the stuff that was going on; and it was WAY worse than I even suspected. I want a partnership in my marriage and I just don't know that he is capable of being that partner. I think that is why I am so scared at this point because I don't know that I can put myself out there to him anymore - I am terrified of him stomping on this relationship for the 100th time. I am trying very hard to stay focused and know I have let his drinking go on for far too long - I think I was in denial as to how bad it was...I feel SO beaten down and unhappy. I am hopeful that AlAnon has some help for me on this. Thank you all for reaching out... I really appreciate it.
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Old 11-17-2017, 01:00 PM
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Alcoholism recks havoc on every facet of ones life. It’s truly a disease and not one that can be cured with breathlizers, finding every last secretly stashed bottle, and demanding change.

An alcohol will find a way to drink if they want to drink. Any attempt you make to control his actions will simple end with you losing your sanity and being disappointed.

As someone with use to be with an alcoholic I feel your anguish. It’s hard to watch someone you love, not love themselves. We trick our selves into thinking that their sobriety is our “Golden ticket” to making the relationship what it should be. The reality is far more muddled. They struggle with self worth, coping when the one thing they cope with now not being an option, and someone that likely doesn’t even remember the person they were prior to the addiction. They are trying to find themselves again. Also when sobriety is on the table it brings to the surface the issues that were ignored during the addiction which required all the focus.

Alcohol while a large part of the issues in the relationship likely is far from the only issue. It’s vulnerable in every direction. You have to focus on yourself and hope he does the same.
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