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DH drink driving

(184 Posts)
fryingpan Tue 17-Jan-17 20:25:25

About 5 years ago, DH lost his driving license for drink driving, and I said to him that if he ever drove drunk again I would split up with him. He has been impeccably behaved since then.

Tonight he had 3.5 pints of average strength lager and then we ordered a takeaway. He went down to get it while I looked after the baby. I thought he had walked down but it turns out he drove. Half a mile round trip on a very quiet road - it's unlikely he'd pass another car at this time of the evening. He thought that because it was so close and he didn't feel drunk, and the weather was so awful, it would be okay.

He's staying here tonight as he obviously can't drive to a friend's, and he has to leave for work at 6am. I've told him that from tomorrow he can find somewhere else to stay.

I feel sick to my stomach. Aside from this, he's a wonderful husband and father.

What the hell should I do?

northernbairn Tue 17-Jan-17 20:27:35

Call the police. They'll take him off your hands.

Thinnestofthinice Tue 17-Jan-17 20:29:49

Seriously northernbairn? He's her husband ffs

ThroughThickAndThin01 Tue 17-Jan-17 20:31:24

Get him a home breathalyser so he knows if he's over the limit or not.

fryingpan Tue 17-Jan-17 20:31:26

Thanks Thinnest. My heart is breaking here but at least Northernbairn got to say something pithy.

Cynara Tue 17-Jan-17 20:32:13

Well done for carrying out your ultimatum. The fact that he thought it would be ok even after losing his licence in the past shows that he just doesn't take it seriously and doesn't see what the big deal is. If that's his opinion now, even after a previous conviction and after you clearly telling him that another incident would end your relationship, he's past reasoning with and he'll never get it.

Prawnofthepatriarchy Tue 17-Jan-17 20:32:21

What do you want to do? Me, I'd do very little. I'd wait a day or two and then have a talk about how much it upset you.

If he's really a wonderful husband and father then your reaction seems over the top. Five years, ffs? You're not hot on forgiveness, are you?

SadTrombone Tue 17-Jan-17 20:32:26

It's difficult... drink driving for something as stupid as a takeaway within walking distance kind of shows how little the behaviour actually bothers him (and in turn perhaps reflects how highly he regards your opinion / requests).
Since you gave an ultimatum you can't really let it go with no real consequences or it will happen again.
Is there any other behaviour he exhibits within the marriage which is proving problematic?

If this were me I'd be tempted to shop him to the police. Extreme yes- but since he has form I'd rather he lose his licence and potentially face a bit of jail time than end up killing himself or, God forbid, someone else.

SadTrombone Tue 17-Jan-17 20:35:07

Prawnofthepatriarchy
* If he's really a wonderful husband and father then your reaction seems over the top. Five years, ffs? You're not hot on forgiveness, are you? *

Certainly don't think OPs reaction was OTT. She gave him fair warning and he did something stupid which costs people their lives and endangers the lives of many others on a regular basis.

Bestthingever Tue 17-Jan-17 20:42:55

Op I totally respect your stance. My df was prosecuted FOUR times for drink driving. The last time he was banned for life. He still drove now and again. My aunt and uncle were in the police and begged him not to. He was caught for driving while disqualified while my db (12) was in the car. He almost went to prison and he had to hire the top criminal lawyer in Scotland to defend him. This was incredibly stressful and expensive for the whole family and really marred my childhood.
Your dh sounds like a similar type of person. I can't fathom why he would drink drive for such a short distance. I wish my dm had been as assertive as you after the first time he was caught. Tell him to pack his bags.

Prawnofthepatriarchy Tue 17-Jan-17 20:43:31

There's no point in telling the police. They can't breathalyse him in retrospect, can they? If he does it again, OP can call the police as soon as his drives off.

fryingpan Tue 17-Jan-17 20:47:50

Drink driving is a deal breaker for me; that's why I can never forgive it. Sad, he really is absolutely wonderful besides this, and doesn't have any worrying flaws in his character. He's not even been close to drink driving at any point in the last five years.

I think he drove down because it was such a quick journey and he thought it would be okay, not because he just doesn't give a fuck. If that makes sense.

I know I can't let it go, but I can't help hoping that splitting up is a bit drastic.

Sybis Tue 17-Jan-17 20:47:57

I think the initial reaction is fair. Up to you to decide whether you follow through and leave him, but his behavior is appalling.

But people saying she should shop him to the police seems unrealistic; could easily lose his job and that might cause the OP significant hardship. Depending on the level of co-dependence, that'd be a huge decision to make. I can't say I'd do it in the OP's shoes.

fryingpan Tue 17-Jan-17 20:50:42

I'm not going to call the police. If they don't catch him in the act, there's nothing they can do anyway.

ThroughThickAndThin01 Tue 17-Jan-17 20:50:50

If you can never forgive him, then you need to split up.

Sounds melodramatic and drastic to me, but it's your life. Do what you think is best.

Thirtyrock39 Tue 17-Jan-17 20:51:46

God I was once pulled over and breathalysed (worked in a pub so was pulled over as driving out of pub car park v late at night) ironically I had drank one medium wine as it was my last shift and it was the scariest thing ever when I saw those blue lights. I've never drunk more than a small wine and drove since and am staggered that someone who has lost their licence would risk it again regardless of the journey.

PimmsIsMyDrinkOfChoice Tue 17-Jan-17 20:52:17

Trouble is, after three and a half pints not only is he not safe to drive, that amount of alcohol has clouded his judgement so that he thought it was OK to drive.

Wolfiefan Tue 17-Jan-17 20:53:49

Does he drunk heavily in general?
Drink driving would be the end for me too. It's dangerous, irresponsible and against the law for fucking good reason.

fryingpan Tue 17-Jan-17 20:55:33

No he doesn't drink heavily. He'll have a couple of small beers of an evening as a general rule (less than a pint).

allchattedout Tue 17-Jan-17 20:57:19

prawnofthepatriarchy I doubt you would be so forgiving if your child or family member were killed or injured by a drunk driver. If it's fine for the husband to make this journey to collect takeaway (potentially killing or injuring someone on the way) then surely it's okay for him to drive drunk with his DC in the car too? After all, he is risking the lives of someone else's DC even if he drives on his own.

I cannot fathom how anyone can be convicted and STILL take that utterly idiotic risk. I doubt I would drive again if I were convicted, let alone drive drunk. He has learned nothing. Well done for sticking to your guns. He needs to learn that this behaviour has serious consequences. I also suggest that he goes on a hard-hitting drink driving awareness course so that he can see the devastating consequences of the actions of idiots like him.

It is ultimately for you what you do but I don't think I could continue to be married for someone who has such utter disregard for human life. And I would be terrified about him putting your DC in danger.

MrsBobDylan Tue 17-Jan-17 21:06:10

I'm so sorry for you and can completely understand why you issued your ultimatum five years ago and are prepared to stick by it now. For those who have called op melodramatic and unforgiving, what if it had been a member of your family killed because her drunk dh misjudged the road after 3.5 pints, all because he drove to pick up his dinner, which he could have walked to get?

Is there anyway that you could be sure it would never happen again, such as him giving you his car keys every time he's had a drink? Oh God, I don't know. It it so sad that you have to suffer and lose a partner you love because he basically can't be trusted not to put other people's lives in danger.

fryingpan Tue 17-Jan-17 21:08:53

This is the thing, he didn't think it was a problem. He clattered his keys down as he walked back through the door so it's not like he was hiding it.

Maybe if I can impress upon him how unacceptable this is, regardless of the length of the journey or how much or little over the limit he is, it might scare some sense into him.

MaccaPaccaismyNemesis Tue 17-Jan-17 21:10:59

Sounds like I'm in the minority but I wouldn't throw in the towel on my marriage because of that. Strong words, yes. But he is your husband and the father to your children. Maybe suggest some alcohol counselling and show him what drink-driving can do.

fryingpan Tue 17-Jan-17 21:14:33

Thanks MrsBobDylan for your kindness. Your post basically sums it up. What if I have to tell my kid in 5 years that she's growing up in a broken family because her daddy didn't want to walk to the takeaway in bad weather? It's so fucking stupid.

LRDtheFeministDragon Tue 17-Jan-17 21:15:59

I don't think your reaction is unreasonable at all. It's not as if it's the first time. He can't not know - he just doesn't care once he's under the influence.

I don't know what you should do, though. sad

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