Advanced search

Mumsnet has not checked the qualifications of anyone posting here. If you need help urgently, please see our domestic violence webguide and/or relationships webguide, which can point you to expert advice and support.

In a relationship with a serious alcoholic and need advice please

(28 Posts)
hopelessoptimist Sun 25-Sep-16 00:33:24

This is the first time I have posted please be gentle with me. Its quite a long story but I will try to summarise.
about 18 months ago I got back together with my first love after separating from my husband. We have known each other for 33 years and got together at school. We split up and then went out again when we were 20, then split when I had a year abroad for my degree and now we are together again. it was a slightly traumatic beginning as we were brought together when DPs best friend committed suicide and I helped him through it (he was also an old friend of mine). DP has always been a heavy drinker and also is bi- polar for which he takes meds. His last relationship ended because of his drinking (I know...alarm bells). He has periods where he drinks less and was always a 'functioning alcoholic', but also had periods where he would drink a lot. He has done 2 official detoxes and numerous other self - regulated detoxes where he has stopped , but always for a short while. When we got together he said he wanted to change his life for the better and being with me would be a massive help. I know he does love me very much but he has continued with his drinking since we moved in together a year ago. Not much initially but then increasing so that he was drinking in the mornings...but would usually remain 'functional' somehow, again to varying degrees. About 2 months ago he suddenly took a nose dive. He has been drinking incredibly heavily and is now up to around 45 units a day. He is incapable of anything other than lying on the sofa or getting up to get another drink or smoke a cigarette in the garden. He is unable to take care of himself and hasn't eaten properly for about 5 weeks, and nothing solid for almost 3 , I make him complan shakes .The problem is he is losing his memory, his personality has changed and he is verbally aggressive. He has decided that I am an exhibitionist based on the fact that I went in a hot tub with our friends whilst on a school reunion (we sat and chatted) I have worn bikinis, and I walked to the bathroom in my shorty pjs when we had house guests (they were upstairs asleep and I wasn't seen) (he decided this before the heavy drinking started and he says this hasn't helped his current state. He says he knows I will do this again. He doesn't threaten me with violence and he has never been a fight or threatened me in the past but he has started calling me names, he gets quite angry when he talks about my 'exhibitionism' and badgers me by going over an d over what I have 'done' asking for explanations and not accepting the answers. I have stopped responding now.but it is so wearing being under a constant barrage of accusations. I know it doesn't sound very much and it isn't compared to what a lots of people put up with but I am beginning to get really ground down by it all. I care for him and I am getting nothing in return. He even says I 'obviously' don't give a shit about him. He has about 4 subjects that he goes on and on about, he is confused, cant remember a thing, shuffles around, looks like a ghost as he is so pale and has lost so much weight. I have been trying and trying to ge t him help and he has eventually agreed to go to the local drug and alcohol support place. He was seen by the doc who told him he needed in patient de-tox. He is refusing to go, although I have asked for the referral to be made. Even his daughter saying she would be destroyed if he doesn't go only seems to have had a temporary effect. I am at the end of my tether, getting back aches and migraines and feeling like I could cry at the drop of a hat. I am usually such a happy, optimistic person but I feel there is no hope. I have the feeling even if he does get to detox he will just go back to drink because he says he could never live without it. He is a mental health professional but now retired due to his health. I am so sorry for the ramble. I do really love him but I cant go on leading this life and I feel so stupid for thinking I could help him. My old life was so happy and secure in comparison and I am just not used to living with such daily stress. I just don't know what to do I guess. If I leave him there is no way he could care for himself but if I stay I do not think it will be any good for me. What should I do? Thank you

LonnyVonnyWilsonFrickett Sun 25-Sep-16 00:37:24

Leave. Leave and don't look back. You've only been together 18 months, no children, no skin in the game. He's a habitual alcoholic who doesn't want to stop yet. Save yourself another fuck tonne of pain and time and leave.

SiaMia Sun 25-Sep-16 00:38:12

Get out get out get out.

It's only going to get worse and darling it's bad enough already. This man will destroy your self esteem and any confidence you have left in yourself

blinkowl Sun 25-Sep-16 00:41:47

I'm so sorry you are going through this, and it is huge please don't minimise it.

What should you do? I think you know that answer to that. You have to leave. You can't help him, in fact you have just become part of the problem. Look up codependency.

The sorry truth is that love cannot fix this. You cannot fix this. Only he can - maybe, if he hasn't damaged himself too much. You can't make him. He is in no fit state to have a relationship.

I spent 15 years in relationships with alcholics. (I repeated the mistake twice, stupidly).

What a waste of my life, and how damaging it was to my self esteem. I would never go there again.

TweeterandtheMonkeyman Sun 25-Sep-16 00:44:39

Leave him. I do know it's hard (alcoholic father) but he absolutely will survive on his own, you are facilitating his current lifestyle & he needs to hit rock bottom without you there bailing him out.

Canyouforgiveher Sun 25-Sep-16 00:50:12

Just leave.

It will stop you from ruining your life.

And it might just stop him from ruining his.

Dollykazaver Sun 25-Sep-16 00:56:15

You're co dependent and enabling his drinking. Ring AlAnon. You deserve better than this - don't hang on to some fairy tale about him being your "one true love" or the like.
Good luck flowers

gratesnakes Sun 25-Sep-16 00:57:03

Agree with all the others. You cannot help him. Your support just enables his drinking to continue. Please leave him tomorrow. None of it is your fault so don't blame yourself.

ageingrunner Sun 25-Sep-16 00:58:11

He needs serious medical help but you can't force him to have it. It sounds like he's developing Wernicke Korsakoff syndrome/dementia maybe. Would his GP do a home visit? You have to leave though snd it's up to him then how he decides to live his life. It's not your fault and you can't help him. I'm so sorry it must be awful

ageingrunner Sun 25-Sep-16 00:59:20

You've tried haven't you? Time to think of yourself now. Save yourself flowers

hopelessoptimist Sun 25-Sep-16 01:02:25

I think I already know what I should do and it is what you all have suggested. Thank you so much for your words of support. I just am mourning so much for the man underneath it all, he is kind , clever and funny and its just so sad that he has become this person. He is full of self pity a lot of the time, 'how did I get like this, I'm just a useless c@&t' but still cant accept that it is his doing, he says 'you have no idea what its like, you have no conception, its all so easy to you'. But if I leave how will he manage? The house is in my name alone, but he has contributed capital to it, I just cant turn him out on the street, I think I just don't really know how to leave either. Sorry I sound so crap, I'm an intelligent , independent person and am not recognising myself at the moment either.

hopelessoptimist Sun 25-Sep-16 01:05:33

I've involved the GP, crisis team, his psych and the drug and alcohol people...keep getting bounced around and this hospital bed wont be for another 2 weeks at least. Thank you all again, am typing this in floods, how daft is that.

ageingrunner Sun 25-Sep-16 01:07:14

If it's in your name then he'll have to leave. It could trigger him to get himself some help, hopefully? Does he have a social worker? It's not your fault that he chooses to drink. It's very sad, but not your fault.

ageingrunner Sun 25-Sep-16 01:08:31

You really have done all you can for him and it's up to him now. You can't make him do it but you've done as much as you possibly could for him haven't you? You really have

hopelessoptimist Sun 25-Sep-16 01:12:21

ageingrunner thank you, I think I have...he doesn't have a social worker but I raised that on Friday, so I think once that is in place I have to tell the agencies that I can no longer take responsibility and he will be on his own.

ageingrunner Sun 25-Sep-16 01:15:01

I think you're doing the right thin for both of you. But you have to be your own priority now, because he can't look after you or prioritise you, sad as that is. Look after yourself and harden yourself. Not easy but you'll have to to get through the next few weeks

AdaLovelacesCat Sun 25-Sep-16 01:15:39

Leave. You cannot have relationship with an alcoholic.
Not possible.

RegretfulMe Sun 25-Sep-16 01:16:32

You need to make him leave. He has no intention or inclination to get sober. His previous sobriety has been short lived. You need to put yourself first. He will drag you down. Get him out!!!

I say this as an alcoholic who was so bad I go myself to hospital 4 years ago bloated and yellow, was admitted within 30 minutes and has 12 litres of ascitic fluid drained from my my body. My liver was failing. I weighed 5 stone but I would not seek help until I was forced to. Nothing anyone said made one jot of difference.

He is beyond your help at the moment. Sad but true. Put yourself first.

Dollykazaver Sun 25-Sep-16 04:58:15

How is he getting his booze OP?

PrincessOG16 Sun 25-Sep-16 05:10:58

If it was true love you wouldn't have split already twice in the past.

Just leave. You're hanging on to an alcoholic waster. He won't change for you. Doubt he'll even change for himself.

Rainatnight Sun 25-Sep-16 05:25:17

You poor thing. I know what it's like to think you can really help someone like this and I learned the hard way that it's just not possible.

You have to get out of this. It's not as simple as you leaving if he's in your house. What arrangement did you make about the capital he put in? Are you in a position to pay him back so that you can just 'buy him out' so to speak?

Whoooodat Sun 25-Sep-16 08:39:52

What, he does nothing but drink all day? You/he can't go on living like that.

Yes make plans to pay him back if you can and get him out.

AttilaTheMeerkat Sun 25-Sep-16 08:54:57

You have to leave him now, there is no other option. You are not responsible for the actions of another person, he could go onto lose everything and still drink afterwards. That is his choice.

Life with an alcoholic is basically lurching from one crisis to another. I presume you have thought all along that you could help this person get better; wrong on all counts there as has been proven.

Detox for him will not work for a number of reasons; one he does not want to go,two you yourself made the referral and three he says he could never live without drinking. That place could go to someone else who is fully committed to dealing properly with the reasons behind the alcoholism. Coercion from partners does not work.

You are likely confusing love with co-dependency which so often happens when people have relationships with alcoholics. Are you are people pleaser or wanting to rescue and or save people?. He is not dragging you down with him.

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

You cannot love him better and you made the referral to detox as well. That is not going to work out at all because he himself has to want to deal with his alcoholism. You cannot do it for him and unsurprisingly what you have tried has not worked.

Your own recovery from this dysfunctional relationship will only start once you have completely extricated yourself from it. It will not happen before then. Also you need to think long and hard about what it is that attracted you to such a man in the first place and work on this through seeing a therapist. You have much to unlearn.

hopelessoptimist Sun 25-Sep-16 12:02:04

Thank you all for your comments. Dollykazaver he goes out and buys it, we are a v short walk to shops in a small town. I don't buy it for him, he goes early in the morning usually. I was attracted to him age 15 and that has never changed - he is an incredibly attractive person (or was) very good looking and charismatic and also very loving but very damaged. I do have to work out why Attila. Both the men I have loved most , him and my EH , are strong characters, to the point of controlling and self centered too. As is my mother....

AttilaTheMeerkat Sun 25-Sep-16 12:10:49

You've written it already; we learn about relationships first and foremost from our parents and you've subconsciously chosen men just like your mother.

Self centered and controlling behaviour like you have likely been shown and absorbed is infact abusive behaviour; they are not just "strong" characters

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now