Confused and lonely wife of an alcoholic

Old 05-10-2018, 08:59 PM
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Unhappy Confused and lonely wife of an alcoholic

My husband has struggled with controlling his intake of alcohol for about 9 years. It's never just one or two drinks - it's always every last drop in the house.

I had thought he had a drinking problem for years and tried to tell him that but he always disagreed so I doubted myself. Plus, we were in our early twenties. That's what everyone did. Him - more than others and at a far bigger rate but it was bordering 'normal.' He told me - just because I drink less than him doesn't mean that I am right and he is wrong. I mean, it made sense at the time so I was always able to forget about it until the next casual evening out that he got wasted at.

About a month after we were married, he admitted that he thinks he does have a problem, and that he has been looking at attending an AA meeting. I was obviously upset, but also a bit relieved as I felt like I hadn't been paranoid. I knew there was something wrong, and I should have listened to my gut.

He quit alcohol and attended 2 meetings. He was very lonely during this time. He didn't tell anyone, no friends or family, so it made it very difficult. Then after 7 months, he decided that he didn't think he had a problem, because people who had problems weren't able to quit like he had. So we agreed to special occasions only - no alcohol in the house, no alcohol at minor events etc.

Obviously, as I have read a few articles that show me that we are not alone in this, it slowly turned into every weekend. Then during the week. Then alcohol in the house. Then, he was drunk when I came home one night and we were about to go out for a friends birthday. What happened to one or two? Or special occasions only like weddings? Its all out the window and hes drunk, spitting on me as hes talking and running around the bar, telling me hes not coming home cos hes going to the casino.

I was furious. At him and at myself for letting it get out of hand again. This used to be my every weekend, every Friday and Saturday. Then he lays in bed all day Saturday and Sunday. I can't go back to that. He had only been drinking again for 2 months. I know it is his own doing but I also feel like I should have noticed earlier and put a stop on things. I just keep doubting myself because we are only 28. We don't know one person with these issues. Drinking is normal in our families and circles. I find myself wondering if he even HAS an issue because I have it in my head that alcoholics don't have jobs and are drunk 24/7. Then other times, like the other night, it's so obvious that his relationship with alcohol is toxic.

He has stopped again. He cried to me 2 weeks ago that he is out of control again and he has been looking at AA meetings around our area. Again, I was upset but relieved. He said that he was so scared to admit he has a problem because then he has to actually stop and he was so lonely last time.

Then it makes it very difficult when I tell my friends so I can get support but they say they don't think he has a problem. Firstly, they have no idea about alcoholism, just as I didn't before I was forced to look into it. And they don't know what he says to me - how he can't stop thinking about the next drink, he counts down the hours until he can have a drink, he can't stop himself once he starts, he physically cannot have just one or two, he is controlled by the next drink. Yet they tell me they don't think he has a problem!!! It makes me feel insane! Makes me doubt whether he does, or if I have made a big deal out of nothing.

I guess I just want some confirmation from people who have been through it. I have asked him to see a drug and alcohol councillor but he isn't keen on that idea. I now feel lonely. I am scared to tell someone in case I get that same reaction.. I shouldn't have to convince my friends he has a problem so I can get support. Perhaps they said that to try and defuse the situation, make it less than it is. But it just came across like I was making a big deal out of nothing and am stopping my husband from drinking when that is not what is happening at all!!

I just feel alone and I just want to hear from others who know what I'm talking about...
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Old 05-10-2018, 09:09 PM
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Firstly.... Welcome.

Everything you say is right. Youre not going mad. Your husband is an alcoholic. He is powerless when it comes to alcohol and once he starts, he cant stop. However only he can make the decision to stop...and stay stopped. You need to look after yourself. I am the alcoholic. Ive stopped. You will get a lot of advice here from the friends and family of alcoholics and i hope you find some sense of what is best for you. All the best. Xx
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Old 05-10-2018, 09:24 PM
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Hi ticktock , by the description he sounds like me and yes Iím an alcoholic. People usually donít go to an AA meeting by mistake. Itís hard for him thinking ď this time it will be different , setting limits , trying to control his drinking and just blowing right thru them . Been there done that. Hopefully it clicks for him.
You should check out t Alanon also .
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Old 05-10-2018, 10:22 PM
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Hi ticktock,

Glad you found SR, there is a lot of support here.

Just wanted to say you might want to check out the Friends and Family of Alcoholics forum here. There is a lot of threads/posts and information you might find helpful.
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Old 05-10-2018, 11:18 PM
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Welcome ticktock..
Sorry for the situation you are in.
To me it definitely sounds like your husband has a drinking problem, normal drinkers don't hang out or crave for their next drink.
You may find the support here in friends and family section that you aren't getting from your friends... I think a lot of people don't uunderstand the differing scale of addiction so don't recognise when there is a problem..
Without knowing you I think it's safe to say that you're not going insane..
Good luck.
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Old 05-11-2018, 12:09 AM
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Hello ticktock

I know what you're talking about because you're describing very much how I was. The good things in your situation is that he's admitting it and is talking to you and that he's young enough to do something about it and still have most of his life to look forward to. I left it a lot later. Of course seeking help is his choice but you can encourage him - it sounds like that particular door is slightly open already...

Best of luck.
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Old 05-11-2018, 01:45 AM
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Morning Ticktock - thank you for coming to SR. It's wonderful that you made it here

I'm afraid that your husband is very much an alcoholic - we know it, but more importantly, so does he. The fact that he's acknowledging it and has you to support him with his recovery is fantastic - just please don't forget about your needs too in the process. As an alcoholic I was a selfish, insensitive a**hole and I'm forever grateful that my partner stayed around but if I could take back the early years and spare him the agony, I would.

With regards to your friends, and this is just my opinion, quite often people around alcoholics tell them that they don't have a problem. Because if they admit that a person does drink too much then it forces them to evaluate their own relationship with alcohol. I have more than a few people in my life who think that they're fine because they only drink 2 bottles of wine a night and could "stop anytime". We all make our own choices.

I really hope that your husband means it this time and that you both have the help and support necessary to facilitate your wellness. Thanks for coming to SR - you'll find lots of lovely people here who will support you whenever you need it. Take care. Love Yix x
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Old 05-11-2018, 01:59 AM
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Hello ticktock, Welcome!

You are definitely in a place where folks understand. Well, the good news is that at least he occasionally recognizes he has a problem, but it sadly does not sound as though he is ready to stop. And really, unless and until he is ready to obtain and maintain sobriety, he will keep drinking.

One thing I have learned is that drinking is often a progressive disease with a wide spectrum of "drinking styles" from binge to daily. I hope that you can get some support for yourself, too. As someone has already pointed out, we do have a sub-forum specifically for the Friends and Family Members of someone in active addiction. You can also begin to see a counselor of your own to help navigate all this. And SR is open 24/7!!

I am glad you found us, but so sorry for the reasons why. Welcome, again!
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Old 05-11-2018, 02:14 AM
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Thank you everyone for your lovely responses. It has really helped. Good to know I have this site forum to go to, and the chat when I need it. Best of luck with all of your situations.
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Old 05-11-2018, 02:15 AM
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Your husband sounds very much like how I was. At the end of the day, along with various other reasons, I knew I truly had a problem with alcohol when I would obsessively think about it all hours of the day. It was the single biggest thing in my life and dominated my thoughts.

When that happens, you have to accept you have a problem. It's good your husband has confided in you that he spends so much time obsessing about alcohol. There's no doubt he's an alcoholic. Suggest begets back to AA. He needs to accept that it's impossible for an alcoholic to control and moderate drinking. Sooner or later you end up back in the same terrible situation.
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Old 05-11-2018, 03:56 AM
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Some great advice here
Welcome to SR ticktockclock

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Old 05-11-2018, 08:14 AM
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Hi and welcome.

Your story is alot like mine, except I am your husband. Me and my hubby are both 28 and my husband is a 1 or 2 beer wonder (ocassionaly he will drink more if we are at a big party, but ive never seen him out of control). I am always the one overdoing it, cant stop at one drink, constantly thinking about drinking and I tend to embarrass myself when we are out.

We also have a group of friends who drink quite often, and they party hard. I can see where it skews the line of we are young and having fun. But no one can tell you if you have a problem with alcohol. Lots of my friends didnt think I had a problem either, because I was drinking like they did, but my hubby thought I had a problem. He knew the anxiety and depression and how it made me feel behind closed doors.

If it is affecting him, and your life then I would say it is a problem. I honestly think sometimes its better to leave your friends out of these types of situations as they can confuse you quite a bit, especially if they are drinkers themselves
Best of luck to you both!
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Old 05-11-2018, 02:13 PM
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Hiya, sorry you had to come here but glad you found sr.

I’m an alkie, if there’s one thing I was really really good at it was hiding the fact that I’m an alkie. Only my partner knew. If i listened to the well meaning people who thought I didn’t have a problem, I’d be dead by now.

Only he can decide he’s an alcoholic, only he can do something about it. You can d fire what you’re willing to live with in you’re marriage.

Keep reading and posting, this is a good place. Take care
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Old 05-17-2018, 07:24 PM
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Thanks, this was very helpful. I am sorry that you are also in this situation. It is incredibly hard. But its also good to know someone else my age is going through it, and it actually is a problem unlike what my friends think. And I think you're right. My friends may need to be left out of it. Thank you to every one. This has been so helpful for me.
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Old 05-17-2018, 07:37 PM
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He sounds like he has a definite problem with alcohol. I'm sorry you are in this situation but glad you found us. You'll find lots of support here.
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Old 05-17-2018, 08:09 PM
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let's do some math....
you are 28.
you say this has been going on for 9 years.
that is roughly one-third of your life.
and you are HERE.

no one you know is revealing any type of drinking problems in their relationships.....maybe no one else has any but more likely they keep that unpleasant stuff a secret. drinking problems, marital problems DO that......
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Old 05-18-2018, 12:25 AM
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Welcome, Tick. Replace the word "alcohol" in your story with "heroin" or "cocaine" and then ask yourself/your friends the same questions.
It's hard for your friends to understand because booze is drummed into all of us as the happy, social, legal drug so they don't see how it can be just as deadly, if not more so, than any illicit substance.

Everything you've said about your hubby sounds a lot like me when I drank. I could never have one or two, my life revolved around alcohol even though I wasn't a daily drinker except in phases. I worked in some very responsible jobs and managed to hide it very well, until I couldn't any more and everything began to unravel.

I'm so glad he's stopped right now, that says a lot about him, that he's willing to try. He needs support though and unfortunately his old friends may well not understand. That's why it's so important to find sober contacts to talk to through AA, SMART, Lifering etc and/or online.

You will need support through this too, as others have said it might be worth you checking out Al-Anon to link up with other people who have been where you are. And of course, this site is here 24/7 so please never be afraid to come here for advice or support.

Last edited by Madnellie; 05-18-2018 at 12:26 AM. Reason: Wall of text hurt my eyes ;)
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