is his alcoholism affecting mine or is it a red herring?(21 Posts)
im an alcoholic who lives with an alcoholic in denial. i have periods of sobriety and then binge drinking.
my partner of 15 years was always a heavy drinker and i think we bonded over that as we normalised morning drinking and chalked up crazy drunknen nights as fun.
i have told my partner several times that i want to stop and need him not to leave alcohol in the fridge as i work from home and the temptation is too much.
he does this once then forgets.
i asked him not to drink at home or around me. he gets sulky and says you do what you want.
he doesn't look after me if im drunk like i would him. for example, i was drunk in the am and he dragged me to go out and do what we planned to (pottering around the charity shops). then got angry at me and left me in the town centre and drove off. i wasn't arguing probably annoying but he does the same and more. i feel like he should protect me and look after me more and also support me staying sober which i have been trying for the past 5 years.
ive talked to him about stopping drinking many times. i think both of us are sick and tired of seeing me relapse into worse binges.
i would like your thoughts on whether it's unhelpful for a successful long term sober life to stay with him or if it's an excuse for me to blame someone else for my own problem?
FYI the relationship isn't that fulfilling either. we have good days but it's mainly dull.
What would you do?
Obviously if you want to stop drinking living with an alcoholic isn't going to work, so you will need to leave.
Unrealistic to expect him not to have booze in, or help you stop. Seek help from agencies, groups and/or friends or family who don't have alcohol problems.
Both your main relationships are currently with alcohol, so also unrealistic to expect much care, support and so on from him.
Really hope you manage to tackle your problem and feel better and have a better life.
Why stay in a dull relationship ? I'd leave and focus on your recovery
The relationship seems both pointless and destructive. I am no expert but I wouldn't bet on you ever getting or staying sober with him around.
thank you loopy.
Both your main relationships are currently with alcohol
this is exactly it. Very true and saddening.
reread my post. it is unrealistic of me to expect him to look after me when a. as an adult I'm unable to look after myself and b. he doesn't look after himself.
bigchris, finances and I'm also scared of being alone. No family and weak transient friendships.
OP I really feel for you because contemplating leaving a relationship is not easy when you don't have a support network, but you HAVE to leave this man if you want to recover. You will just descend into something you really can't get out of if you don't, either irreversible bad health or some other kind of trouble.
I would see your GP as first port of call. Explain your situation and they should be able to tell you what help and support is available to you, both with the physical addiction and the emotional side, possibly also point you in the right direction of services that can help you with alternative housing etc.
I don't think it's a red herring. Of course you need to take responsibility for your own actions, but it's unrealistic to think that bottles in the fridge etc won't be a temptation for you.
oncemore in the back of my mind that scenario (liver disease or even going to prison over something done under the influence!) is there. I guess I was hoping that i'll be told that his drinking would not affect me if I was stronger or tried harder. that's it actually.. i feel like if i try harder i wouldn't need to leave.
Also if you do successfully kick the booze (nigh on impossible when you have a heavy drinker for a partner) what will your relationship look like then? That was your bond, so how will you survive together without it?
You will be resentful of him, he will be jealous of you or belittle your sobriety, and you won't have your common ground any more.
Staying together is pointless at best.
And to answer your original question, no it's not a red herring. It will be incredibly difficult for you to keep control of your addiction with him and his booze in your house.
What kind of recovery work have you done? I ask because any recovery program would tell you that living with an alcoholic will be destructive to your recovery and the fact that you're asking makes me wonder if you have ever sought proper help?
oncemore you're right and these are very good questions. Looking back at when i was sober with him:
his drinking was very irritating and boring.
we didn't do much activities.
i ended up going to bed early or did my own thing as all he wanted was to veg out and get drunk.
i started questioning what I find good about him.
I felt he was waiting for me to slip and when I did he looked so hurt, disappointed and upset. doesn't encourage me by saying nevermind its a slip.
we share some hobbies but alcohol features heavily in them (traditionally but plenty enjoy them AF)
I found him dull and hated the smell of alcohol. didn't want to kiss him or be near him.
also felt on edge in my own home. i want it to be 'a safe place'.
i just feel in a normal loving relation, if i knew my partner is miserably affected by alcohol and wants to stop i would support them by the easy sacrifice of not drinking at home.
but we're not in a normal loving relation.
gosh just typing this out makes me realise how dysfunctional we are.
thank you for your advice.
adalind pure will power.
alan carr control your drinking, lasted a while.
counselling to deal with my feelings. very slow and painful process.
craig becks book fastest way to stop drinking.
I've come across alcohol recovery forums where people said they can.
in my heart of hearts i feel i cant stay with him. but im scared and wondered (and hoped) that i'll be told that it can be done i just haven't tried hard enough and maybe be given some tips... god this all sounds so ridiculous all typed out in black and white, doesn't it?
You need to be on your own. You can't get well while living with sickness. Get some support outside your relationship. Good luck
thethoughtfox thank you for your advice.
yeah. in a way i knew this deep down but stayed in denial. it's going to be very painful but I'm already in a lot of pain.
What about your GP, local alcohol services?
So the recovery programmes you tried would have made clear that staying will prevent recovery.
The idea that YOU trying harder could help him seems codependent.
It is hard enough to tackle addiction when not living with a (worse?) addict.
loopy thank you for getting back to the thread and for your further advice.
I'm not sure i want a local alcohol support group because i am very ashamed and paranoid about my drinking and i feel intimidated and self conscious in groups. I've been to an AA meeting in the next town and hated it.
The idea that YOU trying harder could help him seems codependent.
could you clarify the comment about codependency? I'm codependent on him?
loopy no the programmes i tried either said nothing or that it's feasible but not ideal. I've been struggling and I wonder if it's because we live together and the temptation is constant or because I just haven't tried hard enough to abstain.
it's feedback from others on alcohol support forums saying they are in a relationship with a drinker despite giving up alcohol. but i guess i was a bit thick and naive not to factor that their partner 1. may not be a heavy drinker and 2. may ne supportive in other ways and 3. their relationship has a stronger bond beyond alcohol or 4. they may be exaggerating!
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