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Dh thinks I'm an alcoholic. I don't.

(320 Posts)
LumpyMcBentface Mon 22-Aug-16 17:04:22

I do like a drink. But it's become a major issue lately.

Bit of background. I have bipolar and have run up a fair whack of debt. So now I have no access to cash or cards and Dh holds the purse strings.

I have to ask to buy stuff and he will agree if he thinks it's ok. But he has become really strict about alcohol.

We've always been big drinkers, Friday nights have always been our night to drink and be merry. But I also like to have up to a bottle of wine midweek when he goes out for the evening, and sometimes it's nice to have a few drinks with Sunday lunch etc.

Dh has put a stop to that and I have to really convince him that it's fine for me to have a drink any other day than Friday. We went out yesterday for a day out, and I drank wine in the sunshine. He has kicked off at me just now that that was inappropriate and I am an alcoholic.

My family are all quite big drinkers and wine is part of all our get togethers, so to me a family day out in the park, with a picnic, is a chance for the mum to kick back with a cold glass while the dad plays football with the kids. But not according to Dh, it's a symptom of my alcoholism and shows that I have no idea what is and isn't appropriate drinking.

I love him very much and if not drinking at all is what it takes to make him happy then I will, but to me having a few glasses of wine is one of my few 'hobbies' if that makes sense. I don't really go out and see friends or have any actual hobbies (mainly due to my mh) and I just don't really see what the problem is. I would understand if I was a slurring aggressive mess but I'm really not, I just get happy and chatty.

Anyway, this is getting quite long so I'll leave it there for now, but I wondered what others would think. Do I have a raging drinking problem that I'm in denial about or has its just become this huge issue for no reason?

MmmCuriouSir Mon 22-Aug-16 17:07:49

You seem a bit vague about how much you drink. Maybe you could be more specific?

HuskyLover1 Mon 22-Aug-16 17:08:46

Pfft, I wish that was all I drank I have wine most nights

I don't think you are an alcoholic AT ALL.

But, he is being very controlling, and it's not acceptable that you have no financial independence. He's treating you like a child.

StillDrSethHazlittMD Mon 22-Aug-16 17:09:03

What quantity do you drink each week?

LumpyMcBentface Mon 22-Aug-16 17:09:47

Ok, so a bottle of wine on a Wednesday night, a bottle and maybe a couple of beers on Friday (Dh will drink similar) and then sometimes another bottle on a Sunday.

I had a bottle of wine between midday and 5pm yesterday.

RoughMagic Mon 22-Aug-16 17:09:51

How many units do you drink in a week?

annandale Mon 22-Aug-16 17:12:59

Have you had any medical advice about alcohol - e.g. are you on medication which doesn't mix with it? Does your dh associate a night of drinking with a manic or depressive episode?

I have to say my husband has schizoaffective disorder and does better if he doesn't drink much - currently has about one beer a month or thereabouts, though he has had quite a bit more than that in the past.

I'd also wonder if you have a community psychiatric nurse. I understand about limiting your access to ways to run up serious amounts of debt but what about a prepaid card or agreed 'allowance' of cash? Nurses can be good at helping you both think through ways and means of making life livable with fewer restrictions.

flowery Mon 22-Aug-16 17:13:02

3 bottles of wine by yourself in one week? And beers?

I don't blame your DH for being concerned tbh, that's loads.

Fairylea Mon 22-Aug-16 17:13:35

I am an ex alcoholic.

In the nicest possible way if you can't relax without having a drink then you have an issue with drink. I think we normalise drinking far too much as a society and have lost track of what is an acceptable amount. To be honest though it isn't even necessarily about the amount- it's whether you change personality on it and whether it's an essential to you, whether it's something you can't leave if it's offered to you etc etc.

Also, alcohol is not very good for depression and mental health in general. I used to suffer with severe depression and I am convinced some of that was linked to the amount I was drinking. My mental health is much stronger when I am tee total. If you have bipolar I would question whether any alcohol is good for you.

MmmCuriouSir Mon 22-Aug-16 17:14:04

Yes, agreed. 30 units or more is a bit excessive I would say.

annandale Mon 22-Aug-16 17:14:42

xpost. OK, to me that sounds like a LOT of alcohol, I'll be honest, if you're having that every week.

You associate drinking with fun in the sun and being chatty. What does your dh say about it, both for himself and for you? What does he expect to happen when he and you drink?

TellMeSomethingNew Mon 22-Aug-16 17:15:36

That's A LOT

And classing drinking as a hobby sounds like a nice way of saying alcoholic TBH

IzzyIsBusy Mon 22-Aug-16 17:16:11

Alcohol is a depressant. Fact.
People with mh are advised to avoid it or at least drink it in moderation.

A day out with the kids doesnt need alcohol but you associate a park outing/picnic as an oppurtunity to relax.....and have a drink.

Could you go a whole week without a drink?

DameDiazepamTheDramaQueen Mon 22-Aug-16 17:16:13

That's a lot every week,I think he's right to be concerned.

bibbitybobbityyhat Mon 22-Aug-16 17:16:21

Do you frequently get really pissed? Would you buy a lot more alcohol if he didn't hold the purse strings? Why do you think he would make the bold claim that he thinks you are an alcoholic if he wasn't pretty sure about it - would he say something like that just to piss you off? I assume he knows you better than anyone.

BroomhildaVonShaft Mon 22-Aug-16 17:16:33

That's a lot of alcohol but you say your dh drinks similar?
Your dh sounds highly controlling however without understanding the context fully it's hard to say. Does alcohol affect your bipolar and exacerbate symptoms? Does it lead to impulsive behaviour that affects the family finances?

ButtMuncher Mon 22-Aug-16 17:16:49

So about 3 bottles a week?

I'd say (and this is speaking from the POV of someone who drank 3-4 bottles a week at one point) that it's probably the upper limit of healthy - both physically and mentally. I certainly won't go back to drinking that much - for financial and mental reasons, as it is very easy to slip into the trap of denial over how much and when.

I wonder whether your experiences with bipolar is partially responsible for your husbands reaction - in that he has seen how you've experienced the difficulty of debt, and perhaps an inability to ration yourself to something when you enjoy it? I mean that sincerely by the way, I'm not in anyway saying this is the case, but rather suggesting it could be a method of your husbands thinking.

However, it us something you enjoy and why the hell shouldn't you? You're not dependent on it, but you do enjoy it - is there a compromise to be had here? Could you perhaps buy bulk each month - and once you've got 15 bottles (or whatever the weekly equivalent you drink is) and if you drink them before the month is up, tough? That way you are both in control of how quickly/slowly you drink those bottles, whilst at the same time relinquishing the financial side of the transaction to your husband - you've both got an element of control in the choices.

Boredomismyenemy Mon 22-Aug-16 17:17:16

I wouldn't say it's entirely normal for a day out at the park with kids to involve drinking wine. Surely a day out to the park with the kids is a chance to spend quality family time. Would you be happy to be in sole charge of the kids whilst your husband sat on the grass happily drinking? Or would you feel a little put out? I would also disagree that drinking is a hobby, if you replace glass of wine with bar of chocolate, is chocolate eating a hobby?
Do you perhaps like a drink to the point that it's clouding your judgement as to what is "normal".

Trifleorbust Mon 22-Aug-16 17:17:24

That is definitely on the heavier side (and believe me, I'm not judging!) but it doesn't sound like alcoholism from that description alone.

Excuse me for asking several questions back-to-back because I sometimes think it comes across as confrontational and that is not my intention, but:

- Do you ever have a week where you don't drink at all?
- Can you stop once you've started?
- Have there been any incidents whilst you have been drunk, involving the children, the car, losing things etc?
- Do you ever feel regret or guilt about how much you drink?
- Has drinking been affecting your health in any visible way?

I am just trying to ascertain why he is so concerned that he is willing to try to put limits on your consumption of a perfectly legal substance.

MadisonMontgomery Mon 22-Aug-16 17:17:28

That seems an awful lot, especially as it's every week. And drinking alcohol shouldn't be a hobby!

Lupinlady5 Mon 22-Aug-16 17:17:35

I may have misunderstood, but do you mean you had a bottle of wine while out with your kids yesterday?

RoughMagic Mon 22-Aug-16 17:17:38

3 bottles of wine a week plus a few (3?) beers is around 35 units of alcohol OP. It is recommended that women not consume more than 14 in a week. I think your consumption is excessive.

TheNaze73 Mon 22-Aug-16 17:17:49

I don't think it sounds alcoholic but, it's excessive

NauticalDisaster Mon 22-Aug-16 17:20:54

It does sound like you have a problem with drink but it also seems that your husband is quite controlling.

StillDrSethHazlittMD Mon 22-Aug-16 17:20:58

Definitely excessive. If you couldn't do a few weeks without a drink, you have a problem.

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