How to Avoid Feeling Guilty Living With Alcoholism

woman feeling shameIt’s not your fault. You did not cause the alcoholic to drink, you cannot control their drinking and it’s not in your power to cure the disease. The key to not feeling as though you are guilty of some how shaping an alcoholic’s life is by understanding that alcoholism is a disease. It is an illness that you never have had any control over. Many parents think if they had only been this or done that differently, then their child would not have grown up to be a problem drinker. That’s not true because the person who suffers from drinking too much has a disease.

We who live with alcoholism need to understand that they are going to use every excuse in the world that they can find to consume a drink. In the process they may even try to heap some guilt upon us. We must learn to not carry the weight of another’s choices to drink on our shoulders. In the end, their decision to pop the top on a beer or to have a mixed drink has nothing to do with our behavior, past, present or future.

Sad ManWhat they are doing is not our fault. Therefore, we should not feel guilty about anything. There lives have become what they are because of the poor choice that they have made and the affects of the disease of alcoholism.

So, hopefully you grasped the key that I just gave you to not feeling guilty and how to avoid this horrible feeling. But there are other ways of protecting yourself from feelings of guilt.

Here’s a quick recap and a few more tips.

You did not cause the alcoholic to drink, you cannot control another person’s choices and there is no way that you or I can cure the alcoholic. Meditate on that for a while. It’s not your fault.

Another way to avoid feeling guilty is by not taking ownership of everything that an alcoholic says about you as truth. Most of the things that they have to say are lies anyway. Any time that an active drinker points the finer at you and tries to make you feel guilty, stop and assess what they are accusing you of. If it is true, then do whatever you have to do to change your behavior if necessary. If it is not true do nothing. You deserve a decent life no matter what an alcoholic thinks.

All I am saying is that you should examine the things that an alcoholic child, husband, wife or co-worker may say about you. Sometimes just knowing that what they have said is not true is enough to settle the matter inside of our life. When they are lying, there’s nothing to feel guilty about. Actually, even if what they have said about us has some truth to it, we should not feel guilty.

In closing I would like to put it in very plain English.

We don’t do guilt!

When a problem drinker in the family is trying to make us feel guilty, they are doing this to get the focus off of themselves. If they can make you look like the bad person, somehow they will feel better about their own lives.

Make a decision right now to not allow anyone to rent space in your head by making you feel guilty about something.


2 comments to How to Avoid Feeling Guilty Living With Alcoholism

  • vicki

    After being with my alcoholic for 8 years of alcohol abuse, I theatened to leave and packed my clothes (8 yrs) ago, at that time he went into intensive outpatient treatment for 3 mo and it saved his life. He was sobor for 7 years and starting in Jan-Feb last year began drinking to the point that after Sept 2015 he was drunk almost everyday. I made the decision to leave (Jan 1, 2016) Come April this year he drank so much that he started to hemmorage…almost died, spent 3 days in ICU with 5 units of blood taken. To date July 2016, he is still not well, but begs me to come home at least twice a week. (now sober)….I help him, but don’t want to come home. I am feeling quilty because I know he needs my help….stressed as usual….don’t want to go back. Help me deal with the guilt. I was married to him for those years (13 yrs) recently divorced

  • Dianne

    Have you heard of Al-anon . Please find out about it, it will help , because its about you, looking after you, re finding you.

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