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DH going out and getting drunk

(13 Posts)
Greatfun Sat 27-Jun-09 08:36:44

DH (AGED 40) goes out twice a week and gets drunk with his friends. We've been together for 15 years and its something he has always done. In fact pre marraige and kids it was more like 4 times a week. But last night I came to the end of my tether. I have asked him a million times to stop as it affects our lives (he wakes the DCs up when he gets in and then has hangovers the next day and therefore doesn't take part in family life).This week he went out on Tuesday, came back about midnight crashing about and woke DS up who is ill at the moment anyway. Then last night he came in and spent about an hour vomiting in the loo. I ended up screaming at him out fo frustration pointing out that eh is in fcat a 40 year old father of 2 and not a single young man. I am not a big drinker and since having the DCs I hardly drink at all. DH has a stressful job and I know he uses drink as a stress relief. The people he drinks with are all the same age but most are not married or have DCs. I know these people well and don't have a problem with them. DH says he finds it hard to say no because he gets several E-mails every friday afternoon asking him to go for a drink and I guess its a well entrenched habit by now. I am just sick of it. I hate the way ha drinks to such excess. I hate the way it impinges on our lives. I hate what he must be doing to his health by binge drinking twice a week, I really hate spending every friday night alone. TBH there is nothing else wrong with our relationship but I really don't know how much longer I want to live in this situation. The DCS are getting older and I don't want them to think this is normal.

Reading this it may scream other woman but I really don't think thats an issue. Who would wnat him in that state anyway?

I just can't see him changing. I have spoken to him so many times.I have asked him to pace himself. Maybe do alternate fridays at home. Cut down to once a week. Think of the children. But nothing works. Lst night seeing him vomit everywhere (all on the floor in the loo - he has an appointment with a bottle of bleach as soon as he is up wink) was just the final straw.

Anyone been here? Any advice? Do you think this is a drink problem of sorts even though he doesn't do it every night?

ObsidianBlackbirdMcNight Sat 27-Jun-09 08:50:55

Yes have been there although not for as long and not as often but I have also seen my DH vomit on the floor and wake up DS and generally be a fucking immature arse.
I do think it's a drink problem as mine, like yours, uses it when he's very stressed or unhappy and he physically can't stop once he gets going.

No advice though, sorry

GypsyMoth Sat 27-Jun-09 09:05:18

he's always been like this so can't see him changing, especially as you've already explained how it affects you all. He would have to want to change.

AttilaTheMeerkat Sat 27-Jun-09 09:06:31

Do you deep down think he is an alcoholic?. Does he himself think he has a problem with alcohol or is he mired in denial?. Not all alcoholics drink every day either. You may want to also visit the "Support thread for the partners of addicts" on these pages.

I would say he has a long standing drink problem also because of the impact this is having on all your lives. It kills family life and relationships and the bad points outweigh any good ones within it over time. You make up a list of "good" and "bad" points and you see what's longer. You've tried talking to him and making suggestions and nothing (unsurprisingly) has worked. You cannot change him or make him seek help for his dependency on alcohol unless he truly wants to address it.

There are no guarantees here; he may lose everything around him and still carry on drinking.

How many people amongst your wider family know of this?. Not many I dare say, this problem also thrives on secrecy. I would be talking to Al-anon and seeking information from them. You can help your own self in this way. Al-anon is support for family members of problem drinkers.

Ultimately, you are not responsible for this man. You are only responsible for your own self and your children.

Many women in these situations end up as their enabler; constantly covering up for their man, making excuses. Is this what you yourself do now?.

AttilaTheMeerkat Sat 27-Jun-09 09:08:24

Their website:-

I would urge you to read it and make contact with them. They also publish some very good information.

Snorbs Sat 27-Jun-09 09:39:47

It's definitely a drink problem inasmuch as his drinking is causing problems in his family yet he continues to drink to excess. He's also got a problem in that once he starts drinking, it seems that he cannot reliably control how much he drinks. Drinking to the point of puking is something that most people grow out of in their early 20s.

Whether it's a problem in a "is he an alcoholic?" kind of way is harder to say. I dunno. He may well have developed some kind of alcohol dependency but whether that's got to the stage where his only real option is to stop drinking entirely, forever, is impossible to call.

From his point of view, he's likely seeing it as him just doing what he's always done and that has likely become a big part of who he is. I could well believe he's thinking "Hell, Greatfun's put up with me doing this for 15 years, why's she got a problem now?" This isn't to say that you are not entitled to feel fed up with his atrocious and selfish behaviour; he's behaving like a twat. But it may not be easy for him to change.

More importantly, right now he doesn't want to. He's a grown-up who's not doing anything illegal. It's stupid, selfish, hurtful, disrespectful and immature, sure, but you don't have a right to insist that he changes his ways.

On the other hand, you do have the right to choose with whom you live your life.

One way of communicating that to him that may be worth trying is to avoid the "You did this..." and You did that..." but, instead, start with "I". Eg, "I am worried about your health", "I feel scared and angry when you come home drunk", "I'm sad that the children miss out on time with you when you're hungover".

And, maybe, "I can no longer see a future for us with the problems your drinking causes. If you don't take steps to deal with your drinking, I''ll be seeking a divorce." But don't say the last unless you're fully prepared to follow through on it.

If you're not ready for that last then that's ok. Either way, you may find Al-Anon useful. It's the "friends and family" offshoot of Alcoholics Anonymous. It's for people whose lives are being affected by someone else's drinking (they don't have to be an alcoholic). They're not going to try to persuade you to leave him and they're not going to tell you ways of getting him to stop. What they can help you with is to show you ways of getting your attention off his drinking (which, I know, can become almost an obsession) and putting it onto yourself and helping you find out what you want from your life.

You may also find a book called "Co-dependent No More" by Melody Beattie very helpful, as this is also aimed at people who are in relationships with people with drink/drug problems.

BitOfFun Sat 27-Jun-09 09:42:49

I think it's pretty normal tbh. How about getting a sitter and booking plans for the two of you on a Friday night? Just anything to break the pattern. Do it every other week etc and he will be going home with you sober(ish). Good luck.

AttilaTheMeerkat Sat 27-Jun-09 10:54:34


This is in no way normal and he's carrying on now like he started to 15 years ago. Were you worried about his drinking way back?. The very fact that it is now impacting on your family life to its detriment smacks of an alcohol dependency problem - the elephant in the room if you will. You probably find it very difficult to talk to him about it without he perhaps accusing you of nagging him.

What is he like with you in other areas of his life e.g day to day financial matters?.
Does he have a lack of responsibility in that area too?.

Perhaps you thought that he would change his attitude to drinking once marriage and children came along..

You cannot help him, you can only help your own self here.

saggyjuju Sat 27-Jun-09 12:55:17

my husbands exactly the same and realised it 2years ago new years eve playing the wii sports with the older kids,he in the end was falling over and the kids thought he was a joke,i got him into bed,within the hour he was laying on his back gargling on his own vomit i had pushed him onto his side where he just continued to empty his stomach in his sleep all over the brand new leather bedframe we had,when i did manage to move him he continued throwing up and fell into our babies cot and throw up a small amount onto the bottom of her sheets, i left him on the cold tiled bathroom floor and as the kids woke in the morning he was made to wake up clean all the mess away and was still hungover,we then had the slapup new years day dinner he always makes,and he did this as normal,no allowances were made for his behaviour and needless to say he now has 2 beers fri ans sat eve only,wake up call for him!!

Greatfun Sat 27-Jun-09 13:23:49

I have always been concerned by his drinking but I guess iots become normal to us over time. Last night was a wake up call. I am just so angry with him. Our son is unwell at the moment so for the second time this week DH wakes me up and then keeps me awake until 1AM, our son is waking through the night and then our daughter wakes at 6.30. And guess what? DH has a lie in hmm. Attila - you are spot on. He accused me of nagging when I spoke to him and he doesn't take responsibility for money. In fact he spends a ridiculous amount on himself every month and would have no idea about our house account if it were not for me. He's a twat.

Greatfun Sat 27-Jun-09 13:27:33

BitOfFun - The only problem with that is in his mond he thinks he should have 2 nights a week to go out with his friends so would go out with me and 2 other nights. He really is such an arse. He reckons he's cleaned the toilet but it still smells. I am going to make him do it again.

hambler Sat 27-Jun-09 13:35:20

greatfun this is nO fun for you.

Do you mind me asking whether you work outside the home?
And just how stressful id HIS job?

I am not excusing him but if he is the sole earner in a stressful job he may have a sense of entitlement to his twice weekly binges

LovelyTinOfSpam Sat 27-Jun-09 13:52:54

Greatfun this is very very common behaviour and it drives many of my friends u the wall.

The problem seems to be that the couple enjoy going out and drinking together, or it's not a big deal as when the bloke is on the lash the woman sees her friends or whatever. Then pregnancy and looking after small children really puts the kibosh on the woman going out drinking, especially if BF. And by then the dynamic has changed. While on mat leave the bloke is off working and doing his usual work drinks/weekend drinks with his mates etc as he always has done but now the poor woman is sat at home with the babies not able to join it/do something else etc.

But as far as the bloke is concerned it is business as usual.

At least 3 of my friends have partners who still do the "i'll just have a quick one after work" and then roll in at 2am vomiting etc.

Don't know if it helps to know you are not alone.

What to do about it? It sounds like you have talked until you are blue in the face. Of my friends the following approaches have been taken: restricting access to money (wife holds purse strings), physically going and picking them up after work with the kids -having one drink then putting everyone in the car and taking them home - seems extreme and only works if they work nearby, going on and on and on and on about it....

I really don't know what the solution is. If he doesn't want to change then it will be tough to get through to him.

Could you make a series of appointments for saturday mornings? And say fine go and get pissed by all means, but I will be leaving the house at 8.30am to get hair done/go to shops/see a friend and you will be in charge of DC. After a while that might have him putting the brakes on a bit.

I am sorry how you feel I'm not surprised you're at the end of yout tether.

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