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Does this sound like husband is cheating? Or has a drinking problem?

(59 Posts)
HappyRexManningDay Tue 16-Jul-13 22:23:18

Constantly promises he's on his way home on the phone to me, only to turn up stinking drunk hours later. Most often around 1am, sometimes as late as 3am.

This happens maybe 3-4 times a week, always on a week night after work.

I work full time, look after our 2 year old and am almost 9 months pregnant.

Does this sound like he's cheating or maybe a drinking problem?

He's not secretive of his phone or emails, is happy to let me look through them both. i've openly asked him a million times and he denies it, but I don't know what to do a at my wits ends.

We row, have awful awful rows where we say disgusting things to each other, I'm usually crumpled in a heap crying hysterically, the next day he's sorry will never do it again, but by the end of the week he's back to lying and staying out all night til the early hours.
I take care of everything - finances, parenting, every single piece of responsibility I look after. I'm falling apart here doing everything and being constantly let down and lied too.

We can't afford couples counselling and don't know how to fix this.

We love each other and we're both so sad the next day, he's always sorry and hates himself for doing this, but can't seem to stop.

An advice is welcome.

CocktailQueen Tue 16-Jul-13 22:27:30

Wow. This happens 3-4 times a WEEK? I'sd say he has a drinking problem for sure. Not sure about beng unfaithful - I'm sure he's not v attractive when stinking drunk! Where does he go?

He sounds like a useless manchild, not parenting, not being part of a couple. I suggest he moves out to sort himself out. This is the last thing you need with a baby due. Save your attention for your new baby.

WhiteBirdBlueSky Tue 16-Jul-13 22:27:50

Sounds like a drink problem to me.

Skillbo Tue 16-Jul-13 22:28:01

Wow Rex - i don't know about the cheating but i would say there is definitely some problem with alcohol. 3/4 times a week is madness, especially as you've made it clear you hate it and have such young DC.

Wiser posters will be along but it doesn't sound like much of a life at the moment!

coffeewineandchocolate Tue 16-Jul-13 22:30:58

does it matter which one It is if it is having the same negative effect. sounds like it would be much less stressful to kick him out. you are already doing everything anyways

kittybiscuits Tue 16-Jul-13 22:33:26

You can afford couple counselling, it's just that your OH is drinking all the money. Sounds like a desperate situation. In the first instance, does it actually matter what he is up to? I can't see how he could be any possible use or help to you given how he is currently behaving. I would never advise someone as pregnant as you to kick someone out, but I'm not sure what you have to lose here. I would read him the riot act and tell him it stops immediately or he moves out. If he is drinking very excessively every day, he should see the GP to consider medication to support him in his withdrawal. If he has days off anyway, cold turkey will do him no harm. Are you afraid to challenge him forcefully? Do you have any support? If you have friends/family who will back you and stand up to him, I would consider an intervention. Hope you keep posting. x

tribpot Tue 16-Jul-13 22:37:31

Drink problem. A bad one. You probably think because he can still get up and go to work that (a) it's not that bad and (b) he can't be an alcoholic. It is and he is.

Joint counselling will not help you; this is not your problem. The fallout from his problem is, however. I would recommend you read this book, talk to Al Anon and stop arguing about it - it won't do you any good. He needs to realise how serious his problem is, and how much it affects his whole family. At minimum he needs to go to his GP to seek help for his alcohol problem (I have been there myself, this is not a judgey post) - but realistically I think you need to ask him to leave. You cannot live like this.

3HotCrossBuns Tue 16-Jul-13 22:43:48

I'm afraid I don't have any practical advice that differs from the GP, Al-Anon suggestions but I would say that my H was drinking heavily AND having an affair - he was self medicating his issues with alcohol and another woman, which in turn made him feel worse so he drank more. I was wondering about Al-Anon myself when he had a semi-breakdown and calmed down on the drinking. A month later he confessed to the affair.

I appreciate you are not really in a position to be dealing with his issues on top of a young DC and v heavily pregnant. I agree that you should try to save your energy for coping with the new baby - he should sort himself out.

All the best.

HappyRexManningDay Tue 16-Jul-13 22:48:57

Thank you all for your advice.

We love each other and when he's here adores our toddler and is good to me. I would hate to have to go though life without each other, that's not the problem.

The problem is he's hardly here and is always letting me own, lying to me that he's "on his way" or "just jumping on the tube" then I hear nothing until he rolls in steaming drunk.

The longest he's been home from work straight after work is 3 days, but we row a lot when he's home with no drinks after work as I feel, he thinks he's doing me a favour by being home and not going out those days.

I've tried talking to him about his drink problem but he denies there's a problem and says he just wants to escape the pressure of life.

Recently he's said that he finds it tough that we've not had sex recently...the last time was just over a week ago. However it's boiling hot and I'm due very soon, have a toddler and still working full time. Besides how can we have sex when he's never here.

Shall I insist he sees the GP about his drinking? What would the GP suggest?

kittybiscuits Tue 16-Jul-13 23:01:12

From what you are saying OP, he is nowhere near to admitting he has a problem and seeking help. His excuses have blame attached to them. You cannot make him face his problem - you can only be clear on your own boundaries and what you will and won't tolerate for yourself. What he does about that is up to him. How long can you continue to cope if he carries on just as he is now? Or if he gets worse. Not trying to be harsh OP. You are not describing someone who is ready to seek help.

HappyRexManningDay Tue 16-Jul-13 23:06:07

kitty I agree, he doesn't think he has a problem and gets angry when I "nag" him about this....what can I do then?

EhricLovesTeamQhuay Tue 16-Jul-13 23:08:59

What can you do? Not a lot. You can decide how much you will put up with and where your line will be drawn. I'd guess that having a newborn will make this problem much worse.

tribpot Tue 16-Jul-13 23:13:13

I know that what I'm writing won't make any sense to you - but perhaps at some point you will return to the thread and it will then. You can't fix this problem. Love can't fix this problem. You may not want to live without him but he is not giving you a choice. He has a very serious problem and he is choosing to prioritise the problem over you and his dc.

He won't go to the GP. Or if you force him, he will go and tell the GP he has a pint after work and you've exaggerated this into four-nights-a-week binge drinking.

You need to get help for yourself - you are very deeply in denial about the problem if you can write 'when he's here he's good to me' and then immediately note that you frequently row when he's there because he acts like he's done you a favour not to come home hammered for once.

Please do seek some help for yourself. You will find out how common these patterns are, how many other spouses felt as you do. No-one has suggested ending your marriage, only asking him to leave.

kittybiscuits Tue 16-Jul-13 23:15:22

It depends on your support network rex. I'm not hearing that you're ready to tell him to leave, though that might be the wisest thing. You have to start to think about you. What is the best you can do for yourself to manage the impending birth and being at home with your two little ones? They, and you, are much more important than him at this time. Your toddler and your STB newborn are completely helpless and dependent on you. He is an adult who is compromise your ability to even look after yourself and your toddler. Although you are upset and angry with him, at the moment you are allowing him to do this. You cannot stop him, but you are allowing him to do it in YOUR life. You have to start to draw boundaries and state what is okay for you and what will happen if he does not adjust his behaviour to take you and your babies into account - and you may need friends and family to support you with this, and to see it through. Do you have a support network? Look at the Alanon website, and start to learn about the situation you find yourself in. Hope this doesn't sound harsh. I feel very sad and angry for you about his shitty behaviour. x

kittybiscuits Tue 16-Jul-13 23:16:29


ImperialBlether Tue 16-Jul-13 23:42:32

Does he have an iPhone? There's a tracking device you can set up.

I think it sounds more like an affair than drinking, to be honest. If he just wanted to drink, he could do that at home.

calmingtea Wed 17-Jul-13 07:13:32

This is not a happy, healthy, loving relationship. I can tell you right now, couples counselling will not help. You each have to deal with your issues independently. He has a serious drinking problem, it is not normal behaviour. I am hazarding a guess you are already quite deep into codependency, as my logical self is saying why on earth have you not set down strong boundaries.

My experienced self left my xh 2 years who, who behaved exactly this way. I was convinced I loved him and convinced I should work for the marriage, we had young children and where would I go anyway. I lived with it for 7 years of marriage and it was hell on earth. Absolute hell. When he 'behaved' normally I was high and happy and in love, and when he called telling me he was on his way home I was in the depths of anxiety, tried to control his drinking, desperate, alone. Nothing I said ever made him change his behaviour, it just got worse. He would call or text telling me what time he was leaving the office and just not come back until he was finished drinking. He slept in parks, benches, railway stations, graveyards - too drunk to make it home. Othertimes he came back aggressive and we would fight. No changes in our life made a difference, nothing I did made a difference. I ended up in a very codependent and unhappy relationship and really lost every sense of self. A 'symptom' of codependency is not feeling happiness. He spent many many 1000s of our money on drink. tbh who knows what else he did. I raised my young children a single mother, which I am now and I am getting more support from friends and family than I did in my marriage. And I could go on.

What I do know now. He told me he loved me. He didn't he loved himself and he loved drink. No man who behaves that way is capable of love. He had many excuses for drinking, unhappy at work, depressed etc etc etc. But in retrospect these things were excuses for being allowed to behave in the way he felt like. I should have kicked him out the first time he did it and regret every day I didn't. But hindsight is a bitch. I would never stay in a relationship again where there was no trust or honesty and alcoholic relationships are just that. His first and only love was beer. My children are happier now and flourishing without him, they heard all the fights and stress. It really affected them. When he went they didn't even ask for him, he had been so deeply involved with his love-affair of beer (rarely drinking at home) that they weren't used to him being around.

calmingtea Wed 17-Jul-13 07:14:57

Oh I was going to say, 2 years now without that and life is hard as a lone parent, but oh my god. I am happy. And I had forgotten what that felt like.

AttilaTheMeerkat Wed 17-Jul-13 07:17:18

What do you get out of this relationship now?.

The 3cs re alcoholism are ones you would do well to remember:-

You did not cause this
You cannot control this
You cannot cure this

Nothing that you have tried to date has worked so it is time for a different tack. Doing the same old over and over in the hopes of a different result is madness. You are playing a role here to him; that of enabler. Enabling only gives you a false sense of control. You absolutely must not take ownership of his drinking problem.

At the very least he needs to move out and now.

His primary relationship is with drink; everything and everyone else comes a dim and distant second even if you do even figure on his priority list which you actually don't. Like many alcoholics he is in complete denial of his drink problem and likely also badly underestimates how much he is drinking. You cannot make him go to the GP if he does not want to. Unless he himself wants to sort his own sorry self out there is frankly nothing you can do to help him.

He has a serious drink problem that may or may not predate your relationship. You are now pregnant with a second child who is going to be brought into this dysfunctional situation. You say he is good at home but he's hardly ever there. You'd honestly be better off apart but its hard to leave because you think that with love and time you can save him from himself. Wrong on all counts there. You cannot rescue someone who does not want to be helped.

Do you really want your children to grow up within such a household where their dad (when he is bothering to be at home) is drunk?. What sort of example will he set to his children?.

You have a choice re this man, your children do not. They also won't thank you longer term for staying with him.

AttilaTheMeerkat Wed 17-Jul-13 07:18:19

I would also suggest you read "Codependent no More" written by Melodie Beattie as there are often elements of co-dependency within such relationship.s

HenWithAttitude Wed 17-Jul-13 07:26:08

Your mindset is how can I fix this?

You can't.

Adjusting your mindset is the first step to giving your children a better family life

HenWithAttitude Wed 17-Jul-13 07:26:47

A better family life is not accepting this btw

CityTiliDie Wed 17-Jul-13 07:27:30

He is a Twat!

He is an alcoholic.

If he is upset because you havent had much sex recently even though you are 9 months pregnant then he is an insensitive bastard. He has no respect for you or you body.

You should ban sex completely for months after you dc is born and TELL him to be home EVERY day straight after work or FUCK OFF as you dont need another child to contend with let alone a pissed one.

You say you love him and he's good to you! He is not! he's treating you like shit.

You say you dont want to be without him! You are without him most of the time. Your DC dont need the stress and conflictthat tis behaviour brings.

Kick his drunken childish arse into touch b4 you waste anymore time on this wanker.

MultumInParvo Wed 17-Jul-13 07:31:27

Happy. You can't fix it.

Nothing changes until something changes. He is not ready to do the changing yet, but it sounds like you are.

The best of luck to you.

HappyRexManningDay Wed 17-Jul-13 09:25:53

Thank you all for your advice, support and encouraging words.

When he finally came home last night we had a huge row and I ended up getting so stressed I had awful cramps and was doubled over in pain, and thought I was going into labour but after 45 mins or so they subsided which was a relief.

He flitted between being apologectic and being very agressive and angry.

he admitted he may drink a bit too much, but then in the same breathe he said it was largely my fault for not getting him any help. I exploded and we got into a huge row. i don't see why it's my sole responsibilty to fix his problems.

I have enough stresses with working FT, juggling being heavily pregnant and a toddler, plus I deal with all our household fiances including our tenants, mortgage, rent, all bills, all the hh cleaning, food shopping, cooking etc. It's too much to ask.

he was angry that i went out for dinner with my friends last weekend (the first time I've gone out with them in over a year, and I go out for dinner with friends in general maybe every 6 months if that).

He then chnaged his tune and got very angry and agressive and esentially blamed me for any problem sin our marriage and said he was leaving to go sleep ina hotel. At this point I was petrified as I genuinely thought i was in labour and had no idea who i would call to look after our toddler while i gave birth.

anyway, I'm rambling....thank you all for listening. It's been really helpful to talk and have someone listen. Really appreciate it.

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