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How do I split from my alcoholic partner

(17 Posts)
Lullabelle53 Sun 12-Jul-15 00:54:17

Finally I have decided it is time to end my five year relationship. Tonight I ended up ringing the samaratins after a fight with my partner having come in after an evening out with friends to find he had been drinking in charge of his 11 year old daughter. This is after a weekend away last week to resolve several issues including his drinking, which appeared to go well. But tonight feels like the last straw. He was sober for 6 months last year but had a relapse last July after some relatives left some wine here after they had been over for the weekend. That lapse resulted in him losing his job. He went into his new job saying he didn't drink and managed another few months but by Christmas he was drinking at the Christmas. This year has gone back to regular secret drinking. We had planned to get married this year, planned during the sober period. Unfortunately my daughter 15, and his 11 were told and I have been hanging on in hoping it would get better and we could go ahead with the wedding - but no way now. So how do I make the split without causing heartbreak all round? I am terribly unhappy as I am. I moved away from all my friends and family 4 years ago and have never told any of them. His family know but will be devastated that I have decided to end it. I so wanted things to work out but I know in my heart he will never stop drinking. I also recently found some emails to ex girl friends suggesting meeting and worse - they were historic but while I was living with him. He says it was through drink, but even so, I was devastated. I am still with him because of the girls but know that if I continue to put up with it, they will suffer too. Unfortunately like most alcoholics he is funny, charming when sober and they both adore him. My daughter is far more aware of what goes on than his and she does know I am not happy. I am so scared of the reaction from family to a split that I am putting my own wellbeing at risk, and probably the girls too. Any advice?

Maryb21 Sun 12-Jul-15 01:29:59

look after yourself and your daughter, hes not worthy of your love x

goddessofsmallthings Sun 12-Jul-15 02:42:37

I am so scared of the reaction from family to a split that I am putting my own wellbeing at risk, and probably the girls too.

As your wellbeing together with that of your dd and his dd will continue to be at risk as long as you stay with him, I assume you are saying that your prolonging this untenable relationship because you are scared telling them how bad it is.

If his dd lives with her dm she needs to know what took place tonight, as do your family and friends when you tell them you have ended your relationship with this alcoholic.

Do you rent or own your home and what names are on the tenancy mortgage agreement?

goddessofsmallthings Sun 12-Jul-15 02:43:26

you're not your!

LineRunner Sun 12-Jul-15 06:53:46

I think you are very wise and brave, and completely right to leave the relationship.

Can you not simply tell people that you are checking out because he has chosen to give greatest priority in his life to another relationship, the one that he has with alcohol? It's true.

And I'm sorry. It must be horrible. flowers

CallieG Sun 12-Jul-15 07:26:17

Lullabelle53. There comes a time when enough is enough. You need to do what is right for yourself and your daughter & tying yourself to an alcoholic for the rest of your life is not it. I know that all the "groups" & others, even professionals tell you that the Alcoholic is "Sick" & they have an "Illness" & that you would not leave someone who had Cancer or Kidney Failure or some other medical problem but it is simply Not the same thing, Those medical problems can be treated and controlled with medications and therapies. The only person that can help the drinker is themselves. My Ex became a drug addict, he went from an occasional user to an addict after 3 detoxes and short bouts of being clean to jumping back in the first opportunity he got, I stood by him & did everything I was "Supposed" to do, then one day I just got it, I gave him an ultimatum, his drugs or his family , he chose his drugs, so that was it, He was destroying all our lives, I was so focussed on Him that our two children were missing out on having anything remotely resembling a normal life, he spent all his time and money on chasing drugs, consuming drugs and being with people that were drug users too, he was never at home with us. Ending our relationship was the best thing I did for myself and my kids, we deserved better and so do you, You can be supportive of his efforts to stop drinking but you don't have to put your life on hold and let his boozing ruin your kids lives. Stay in touch with your step daughter as much as you can. You have to cut him out of your life if he is drinking. You are not responsible for the feelings of everyone else, friends and Family may well be upset, believe me they are all aware of far more than you think they are, But you Must be Honest about why you are leaving, You are not abandoning an alcoholic, you are taking the steps necessary to protect yourself and children from the life long damage that living with an alcoholic will do, You Have to Stop making excuses for him and Protecting him from the consequences of his actions. I wish you all the best never say no to help and support from people that love you & get some counseling for yourself. It took my ex 16 years to finally stop using which is great but he literally missed his kids lives because he was selfish and refused to be responsible for himself.

gingerbreadmam Sun 12-Jul-15 07:51:40

lulla you might not realise this now but leaving him will likely be the best thing you ever do for your daughter. i know how hard it is having an alcoholic in the family especially one who can do sober boughts. it will never go away tho unless they take serious action.

i very recently lost someone to this horrible illness. they were in their 50s . the pain is incredible. dont put yourself through that. thanks

Lullabelle53 Sun 12-Jul-15 08:34:13

I am really touched to wake up to all these messages - I know I have to end it. Everything you all say is true and I know that - it is just so scary. Thank you and I will respond individually and keep this updated and no doubt be asking more advice over the next few months.

Penfold007 Sun 12-Jul-15 08:43:37

You have to put you and dd first. His family will be upset because you've been looking after him so they currently don't have to.

Tell your family what has been happening. Could dd go to her father's for the summer holidays?

You will need advice on splitting any assets and housing the CAB might be a good place to start.

Lullabelle53 Sun 12-Jul-15 08:45:06

Goddessofsmallthings - we have a joint mortgage which is at then the end its term. As the value has gone up and interest rates are down, I can substantially reduce the repayments. I am hoping me and my daughter can stay here until she is 18 and goes to university and then sell. Most of the equity is mine and when I sell I will split anything over and above that. I need to see a solicitor though to get a formal letter I would think?

xenu1 Sun 12-Jul-15 08:51:24

Sympathies of course and agree with the above advice. I would just add that al-anon can help. It can be a bit 12-step culti but you will meet people who are in relationships (or leaving them...) with alcoholics and that you are not alone. I'd attend at least one meeting to see if it helps (It did for me)

Lullabelle53 Sun 12-Jul-15 08:52:03

CallieG - I totally agree about the "illness" aspect. My father had MS and died at 47 (a year younger than Partner) - he did not choose to get MS and he couldn't do anything to cure it - alcoholics can and lots of help out there for them. I'm afraid I am not a good partner in that respect as I do scream and shout because I don't understand why someone would choose drink over life. You are right I do need to get support. I have contacted several councillors now and was on the phone to the Samaritans last night. It was good just to get it off my chest.

Lullabelle53 Sun 12-Jul-15 08:54:13

Gingerbread mum - must be awful for you. I can see that happening and it makes me feel bad but everyone is right I need to look after myself.

Can hear the kids are getting up so must go and tackle them. No sign of partner yet ....

midnightvelvetPart2 Sun 12-Jul-15 09:00:53

You can't prevent any upset happening at all, as whenever a partnership breaks down there will be upset, but you can smooth it for the children. His family will have to face up to his drinking as whilst you have stayed with him they have probably been in a comfy position of denial & 'well its not as bad as all that' which will change once you have gone. At the moment you are taking the brunt of living with an addict, once you have gone then he may expect them to fill that role & they will see what you have had to put up with. Tell your family as well, you have nothing to be ashamed of.

The girls at their ages may know more of what's going on than you think & remember that no child wants to be the cause of a parent staying in an unhappy relationship. Just keep it calm & keep the main crux of the matter as that you & partner will be happier living apart, no need to mention the women, although my DC are still quite small so I'm not sure how much a teen would understand of alcoholism. Feel your way through with sensitivity & it should be fine.

If you are worried about the family reaction then would it possible to contact them after you have told partner he needs to leave? So they have your explanation first before he gets in there with his half truths & blaming it all on you?

See a solicitor or the CAB for advice about joint assets & how to protect your things.

The scariest thing is actually doing it, once its done & he's gone then your day to day life will be so much easier. There may also be a huge blissful feeling of relief which can get you through the first few days.

One word of caution though, after the initial aftershock he may get very spiteful & do things that you think he's not capable of, so keep a very close eye on any joint monies you have & think around what relationship you would like to have with the 11 year old, if any. He may try to hurt you through any means he can, but just ignore & see it for what it is. You are making the right decision & it takes courage to look your relationship straight in the face & see what's wrong with it. Well done, & it will get better brew

gingerbreadmam Sun 12-Jul-15 10:10:02

it is. its a terrible thing for those left behind to deal with. you point the finger at everyone. where were you. why didnt you try harder. why didnt anybody help.

the thing is with alcoholics ultimately they do have a choice and therefore the only one at fault is them for making that choice.

i do appreciate theres more to it than that. where ours was concerned there was passed trauma that had never been dealt with properly linked in with some mh issues. the problem is no-one will touch them whilst drunk and when they do finally get sober theyre usually very clever people and good at working the system or that was the case in our situation anyway.

when people can get themselves sober too they think theyve done the hard work and can cope but really they are just waiting for another excuse to turn to a drink. eventually if you havent already you will become or provide that excuse for them

when it comes to a point where their body is failing them because of what they have done and they are sober now and really want to get life back, well you dont want to feel what its like to be in that position or put your daughter throught it. unfortunately there is no way you can break that link with you step daughter which is really very sad. i hope she has lots of support.

jml2012 Sun 12-Jul-15 10:31:27

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Lullabelle53 Sun 12-Jul-15 18:46:56

Thanks again for all these comments. Midnight velvet - very sound advise. I'd like to think he won't be spiteful but as you say, and others say, an alcoholic can stoop to all kinds of lows to archive what he wants.

He didn't take my wish to split well this morning. Luckily have had much if the day with girls but he has finally agreed to move out as soon as he can find somewhere. I am about to take my daughter out and speak to her about the split - I think she already knows. He, predictably has holed himself up in the spare room. Yo his credit he has called his sisters who are helping him move out. An added difficulty to all this is that one of his sisters is my best friend of 30 years. I have in fact known him the same which makes it all the more tragic. How I didn't twig about the drinking before I moved up, I'll never know. He was always the life and soul, but I suppose they always are?

I am scared but already feel a huge sense of relief. I am sure this is just the beginning of some hard months ahead but I actually feel optimistic for myself for the first time in ages.

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