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Out all night(39 Posts)
My husband is a part time musician, playing in pubs and clubs a couple of times a month to supplement our income. We have a 2yo DD and have been married three years. Usual stuff, he's a lovely man, a great dad, treats me well, etc...
When I first met him, he had some binge drinking issues. In part, this was because of the drinking culture in the music industry where it's common to have free beers all night for the band, or an appreciative fan will buy rounds for the band, etc. He also drank a bit on the sly - when we first lived together we shared a flat with someone who liked making cocktails and had a big stock of spirits. Over the weeks, I watched the levels in those bottles drop and I heard the alarm bells peal.
Early in our relationship I told DH that, as the child of an abusive alcoholic father, I couldn't be with someone who had alcohol problems. I made it really clear that I was worried about his drinking and he was FLABBERGASTED. He really honestly didn't recognise that he had a problem. He went to counselling and talked it through and realised that he was using alcohol to self medicate for anxiety as well as the usual boundary issues with alcohol. He went on meds (not sure exactly which one) and had a long course of CBT and also hypnotherapy. I was so proud of him and we got engaged, then married. Even at our wedding he drank a couple of glasses of champagne and nothing else.
It hasn't been completely smooth sailing since, booze-wise. There's been the odd evening out where he's had more than I am comfortable with. A friend's wedding last year where they had an open bar springs to mind - he didn't get legless but he was pretty drunk and I was pretty mad. If we ever do buy beer or wine (rare) he has a hard time not drinking it. He will drink six beers in an afternoon easily.
Last night he played a pretty big gig, fairly high profile and lots of his musician mates there too. I was home with DD, went to bed as usual and was expecting him home at 1-2am. But I woke up at 5:30am and he wasn't next to me. I jumped up and looked but his car wasn't outside. I texted him and got an immediate reply, "home in 5, really really sorry, will explain when I see you x".
He came in, sheepish and shame faced, with sick all down one leg of his trousers, with abject apologies repeating on a loop. His story is, he'd had a beer too many to drive home, decided to hang out with his mates for a while and then sleep in the car, then got peer-pressured (he's 38!!) to have a go on someone's joint, had a bad reaction to it and spewed everywhere, then staggered off and slept under a bush (!) until 5am when he woke up and started driving home, getting the text from me enroute.
Obviously, I'm furious and let down and upset. I don't know what to do now. I told him I'm considering my position and whether I want to continue the marriage. He looked shattered when I said that. I'm also a bit worried he hasn't told me the whole story. He's got form for bending the truth to put himself in a better light if he thinks he can get away with it.
What should I do?
(He'd likely still have been over the limit for driving even though he'd taken time out.)
Have you actually spoken to him when he's been sober?
Regardless of his job, his behaviour is ridiculous and I'd be furious.
If you're going to set boundaries, you need to mean it and stick to them. Decide what your boundaries are and make it clear to him that you are to be respected.
Bending the truth - you mean lying?
You need to talk to him when he is sober. There is no alternative that comes to mind; be frank.
What a coincidence that after this chain of unfortunate events he happened to be on his way home when you texted him.
I'm not suspicious about the coincidence. We live out in the country - it's about 35-40 minutes into town and nothing much between there and here. He couldn't have been 'anywhere else' but 5 mins from home, if you see what I mean?
The more I read on here about people in he music industry using their job as an excuse for excessive drinking / drug taking / partying, the more relieved I am that I didn't end up with a musician.
I guess you just have to decide how much you're going to put up with OP and stick to it. He doesn't sound like a nasty man but he does sound like he's just failed to grow up.
He should have let you know where he was.
apart from that, he has stopped drinking on your insistence, because of your issues. He doesn't sound like he really had a problem before tbh, certainly no worse than alot of folk out there who enjoy a drink. He can drink 6 beers in an afternoon?! Its hardly a hanging offence!
Yes, he behaved like a twat. But i think you should cut him some slack here! It obviously isn't a common thing and he sounds suitably embarrassed. I'll be roasted alive for this but providing he isn't an alcoholic, he has a right to be able to drink 6 beers in the afternoon and get merry at a friends wedding without being in 'trouble'. YOU have issues around alcohol but that doesn't mean HE should never be able to let his hair down!
Why SHOULD he give up drinking?!? It isn't him that has the problem about alcohol, it is the OP. If it the OP on here saying her DH has made her give up alcohol because of his issues everyone would be up in arms.
He led her to believe that he had acknowledged his problem with alcohol and had sorted it - which was the reason she married him and had a child with him - and I think it's clear that he hasn't. (I was using 'drinking' in that post to indicate DRINKING not just quaffing the odd small sherry of a night, so I'm sorry if I misled you and others.)
Watch how he is next few days/weeks. That should give you a clue. If he's got a stinking hangover and swearing that he won't be doing that again, then lays off it a while, it could be an odd daft moment that most of us have done on occasion.
However, if he's back on form in a day or 2, and having another drink, I'd say he has a problem. The episode would put most people off it for a good while after.
OP he doesn't have an issue with alcohol, he has a drink at social occasions as millions of others do. That is totally normal
Sounds like you need help with your issues around alcohol, not him
I think it's you that's the problem OP, you're too controlling about drinking.
The cunt chose to drink and drive, whatever else his problems are.
..as the child of an abusive alcoholic father..
As the child of an abusive alcoholic mother I am very careful of my own drinking patterns. However I can also recognise that other men who drink far more than me, more often than me, also manage to function as responsible earners/dads/husbands/partners, etc. In that respect I police myself and am even more careful of policing others because I recognise my own sensitivity to alcoholism as an issue.
What I would look for, to be more neutral, is patterned behaviour in regards consumption of alcohol itself. By that I mean, if he downs a six pack of beer in an afternoon he may really like beer. For me a six pack of beer can stay in my fridge for a month, but a bottle of sake gets drunk pretty quick.
Would he down something else less palatable, say gin or sweet white wine, just as quickly as beer, basically for the effect of being drunk even though he hated the taste? Would he do so if alone in your house?
This is the second post recently about an ageing part-time musician behaving like a student. At his age, getting so drunk/stoned that he vomits over himself is a bit depressing. Most people grow out of all that at a much younger age. I have no idea whether he's an actual alcoholic (no one can diagnose that here) but it's pathetic nonetheless.
And driving whilst in that state is illegal and unacceptable, "music business" or not. If he loses his licence and can't get to his day-work it'll presumably have a massive impact on your family. As would his guilt if he injured or killed someone.
YANBU. This rockstar needs to grow up.
I'm with Horsey on this one.
He sounds like he's generally a good guy.
It sounds like he likes a drink occasionally.
He's not doing this all the time or anything.
Hope you can sort things out.
OP made it clear to this man at the start that she could not be married to or have children with someone who drank to excess.
He knocked his drinking on the head because he wanted to be with OP. He accepted that price of admission.
He's now let his drinking spiral upwards again, presumably without discussing it with OP. He has broken the agreement that he made.
OP is he up and about ans sober? Has he said anything more? I think you need to have a serious conversation about the direction this is heading.
My partner is a comedian. Another job that involves late nights in pubs.
He's teetotal. It's not the job it's the person.
Thanks for all the perspectives, everyone. We have had a good talk and he is very sorry, sad, ashamed and embarrassed. He's committed to 30 days completely dry and then we'll talk again. I also intend to bring it up again with him in a week or so, that way I know he won't been feeling hung-over and 'physically remorseful'. This was a tip from his counsellor - you can't make big decisions the morning after because you are still being affected (negatively) by alcohol.
I don't know if the music industry is anything to do with it, really. That might be a red herring. It's more to do with his "off switch" not functioning well, particularly when drinking to excess is made 'normal' and 'easy' for him, with people literally handing him open beers all night. Culturally, socially, it's just so ingrained. For the record, although I am aware I have issues around alcohol, I do drink myself, on social occasions, and I would have no problem with my husband doing the same. My problem is that he can't stop.
The hurtful truth is that there is no way this situation could be reversed. There is no time that I would leave DD and DH at home together, trusting me, waiting for me, and just not show up because I'd been unable to say no to my so-called 'mates'.
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