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DW has started drinking at work again

(51 Posts)
erlydtl Thu 14-Nov-13 19:41:01

DW has a drink problem and its ruining everything. She lies about it so much. I've locked myself in the utility room to be away from her.

I just wish she'd stop the lying to us and herself.

I'm tempted to call the police, what do I say hello officers my wifes shitfaced drunk again and lying to me about it

I dunno what the hell to do

RandomMess Thu 14-Nov-13 19:43:12

Do you have children?

I would ask her to leave tbh

whattodoo Thu 14-Nov-13 19:43:21

Do you have children? If you do, where are they now?

Have you spoken to the part of Al-Amon that supports families?

BikeRunSki Thu 14-Nov-13 19:46:24

Al Anon helpline 0207 403 0888

Ring them. They can help and they won't judge.

My dad was you 30 years ago OP.

chinley Thu 14-Nov-13 19:47:15

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

erlydtl Thu 14-Nov-13 19:47:55

Asking her to leave is easier said than done.

The children are playing at the moment with a dolls-house. She's taken herself off to bed.

There no point talking to her in this condition as its too frustrating as more and more lies get told and I'd rather get it off my chest here than let it get to me.

RandomMess Thu 14-Nov-13 19:49:37

Ask her to leave when she is sober.

erlydtl Thu 14-Nov-13 19:50:00

ringing them now

BikeRunSki Thu 14-Nov-13 19:52:38

Good move OP. I hope it is the first step on the road to recovery for all of you. On your own time, please let us know how you get on. And hug your children extra tight tonight.

chinley Thu 14-Nov-13 19:54:11

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

erlydtl Thu 14-Nov-13 20:03:03

Well I rang them found a meeting nearby, so I'll go along next week its tonight of all nights.

I'm pissed off with her drinking, social services are on our case about it, she's turned up at school drunk etc. They want her to go to Turningpoint but of course she won't. We've got a conference meeting with Social Services next week to see how things are going.

BikeRunSki Thu 14-Nov-13 20:06:10

erlydti, you've made a really good start. Are there maybe some meetings further afield, or at lunchtimes you could get to sooner ?

Pan Thu 14-Nov-13 20:29:14

Evening erlydti

This a couple of things I'll say that may help.

- there is a fantastic poster called Snorbs who posts here. He is a single dad to 2-3 children due to his ex-DW's drinking. He has been very open about his 'journey' in this. I've just done a search and he hasn't posted this month, though I've seen him recently re his dd. Try to keep and eye for him and search now and again. This situation is going to be a long one, so please stick around. He gives sageous advice.

- Al Anon will indicate the 3 Cs : you didn't cause her drinking, you cant control it,and you can't cure it. So don't even try to intervene actively - facilitate any recovery she gets round to but don't take any responsibility for it.

- everyone, Including Snorbs will say 'ignore any promises she makes, use only what she actually does about it.' (if she ever does.)

- the drinkers threads here are stuffed with self-confessed measures of denial and deceit that partners have to put up with. It's obv your choice re how much and how far you are going to 'put up' with.

I'd say all of this like a 'punt in the dark' and don't know where you are up to, or how long this has been going on. So take anything that is useful to you and leave the rest.

JaceyBee Thu 14-Nov-13 20:32:52

What sort of job does she do? Is it one where she is responsible for members of the public in some way? It might seem out of order but if someone could be harmed in any way by her being at work drunk then her employers should be made aware.

Sorry you're all going through this. sad I def recommend al-anon too.

HowardTJMoon Thu 14-Nov-13 23:17:18

Sadly alcoholics lie about their drinking. They sort-of have to. If they honestly admitted to themselves and others how much of a tragic farce their lives had become due to booze then it would be very hard for them to justify going out and getting pissed yet again. So they lie about it. Most of all, they lie to themselves about it. But they also lie to those around them. Try not to take it personally. It's nothing to do with you.

But this automatic lying leaves people in your situation with a simple choice. If you think she's been drinking - and I'd bet dollars to donuts you are phenomenally good at spotting it as you've probably seen it hundreds of times before - then you can either confront her and get lied to (and/or drawn into yet another pointless argument), or you can simply believe your intuition and act accordingly. Whether she admits she's drunk or not does not change reality. If you think she's drunk, she's drunk. No need for discussion. No need to argue over whether she is or whether she isn't.

The Social Services involvement is, I'm sure, a worry. I've been there with my ex but I had the advantage that by the time that Social Services got involved she'd already moved out albeit we were sharing care of our children 50/50. But it was a horrendously scary time nonetheless.

Social Services has a remit to try, as much as possible, to keep families together. But they have to balance that with a duty of care to try to reduce the risk of harm being caused to children. Make no mistake - an alcoholic parent is a shoddy parent because that parent's reactions and behaviour will vary massively depending on blood/alcohol content.

Social Services gave my ex a lot of opportunities to sort herself out. But you can't force an alcoholic to stop drinking. In the end Social Services helped me to come up with a plan to ensure they our children could still see their mum when she was sober but to have backup plans in place for when she wasn't. It wasn't perfect but it was an honest attempt to make the best of a very shitty situation.

All this happened five or six years ago. At best, my ex now spends a few weeks, sometimes a few months, sober. And then she spends a few weeks, sometimes a few months, pissed out of her skull. As my DCs have got older they've got more reluctant to have much to do with her. I've repeatedly reminded them that their mother's drinking is nothing to do with them. It's not their fault. She'll drink for reasons that are entirely her own.

When they were younger then I tried to manage how often they saw their mother. Sometimes it worked well and they saw her a couple of times a week but, sadly, it never lasted. Now that they're a bit older, a bit more self-reliant and a bit more vocal about what they want, I'm letting them take more of a lead although I do reassure them that whatever they decide I'll back them up and that they are allowed to change their mind whenever they want.

I'm not saying that your DW will end up like my ex. I never thought it would end up like this either to be honest. I would very strongly recommend being honest with Social Services about what is going on and to take their advice seriously.

After the meeting it is well worth dropping the Social Worker a written note along the lines of "Thanks for your time, just to recap - you said x, y, and z. I committed to doing this, that and the other thing. You agreed that you will come back to us by so-and-so a date with advice regarding blah-de-blah and that we'll meet again in three week's time." Social Services runs on paper and most Social Workers are hideously overworked. Don't rely on them to note everything down correctly. Any reports they send you, do fact-check and (politely!) correct as needed.

Do ask their advice about how to deal with situations like the one that prompted this. Get the Social Worker's phone number. Give him/her a call when you can get some time to yourself. Ask how you're supposed to deal with this.

I found Al-Anon very helpful but, to be honest, I found one-to-one counselling (arranged via my GP) even more useful. Because, god knows, trying to raise kids with an alcoholic co-parent can be downright horrible. You need, and deserve, some help and support.

ImperialBlether Thu 14-Nov-13 23:31:05

Snorbs is a boy???

Pan Fri 15-Nov-13 00:56:08

Snorbs is a big man, IB.

Pan Fri 15-Nov-13 01:10:37

and maybe a bit of a boy

EirikurNoromaour Fri 15-Nov-13 06:50:36

Erdtyl, when you say a conference gp meeting, do you mean a child protection case conference?
Have you thought about how you will manage if you separate from her and become main carer for the children? If social services are at conference stage then this is potentially serious. Nobody can make your wife address her drinking if she's not ready to so you may need to make preparations to separate.

erlydtl Fri 15-Nov-13 07:56:09

Yeh I mean exactly that a social services conference for child protection, she's got her head buried in the sand over the seriousness of it.

We went through the usual lies about what she had to drink last night, until she announced that she'd had a 1/4 bottle of vodka on the way home. She's trying to play it off as a cold, but after living with 10 years of her drinking I know the difference between a cold and vodka.

She tried the usual argument that I'm unsympathetic to her plight, but I just took myself away from it. There was no arguing so the dc's went that upset other than the oldest one asking why mummy has to drink.

Alcoholics are utter arseholes, sorry if that winds some of you up, but they are in my opinion.

Whocansay Fri 15-Nov-13 08:03:42

I grew up with this kind of shit. Please remove your children from this situation if you can. Absolutely DO NOT be sympathetic to her 'plight'. She chooses to do this and put you all through it, because her own needs come first and they always will. All you can do if protect yourself and your children.

deepfriedsage Fri 15-Nov-13 08:05:38

I have just been flamed on the drink driving 3/4 bottle of wine thread by I suspect a load of alcoholics in denial. I pointed out a drunk parent can't be in their right mind for their dc if they are drinking that much every night.

I think your doing the right thing op, I hope SS intervention helps.

Onefewernow Fri 15-Nov-13 08:51:17

Why is it easier said than done to get her out? Can you explain.

EirikurNoromaour Fri 15-Nov-13 08:52:43

So what are you going to do to protect your children and yourself?

AttilaTheMeerkat Fri 15-Nov-13 09:08:49


Have you spoken to Al-anon to date; they can also help you here.

Locking yourself in the utility room is not going to help anyone is it?.

You can wish all you want but she will not stop drinking and lying for your benefit. She is likely also badly underestimating how much she is drinking at any one time.

Her primary relationship is with drink and her thoughts revolve around where the next drink is coming from. Unless she herself decides to sort her life out then there is nothing you can do or say to otherwise influence that.

You can only help your own self here along with your children. A social service meeting for child protection could also start pointing the finger at you; what are you doing?. You are also playing roles here in her ongoing alcoholism; that of codependant and enabler. Neither helps.

Do you want to stay with your wife or do you want to separate from her?.

You cannot help your wife; she does not want your help and support and you are too close to the situation to be of any real use to her (I mean that not unkindly but it is fact).

You have seen this for 10 years; your life for that last 10 years has been blighted by her alcoholism and it is affecting your childrens lives to their detriment as well.

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