Detaching From An Alcoholic


What are the ways of detaching from someone who drinks too much? Why would we want to detach form an alcoholic? How can I do this in love when I am so angry at them for being this way? Is loving them still possible after all they have done to me?

This particular subject unfolds into many various roads. I will shed some light and share suggestions on how to separate our emotions from being enmeshed with a problem drinker. Separating ourselves from the way they affect us takes time. It is a process of learning how to do things differently. We don’t really realize it at the time, but our entire lives get all interconnected with everything they are doing and it really affects our behaviors in damaging and negative ways.

Don’t Allow Them to Rent Space in Your Head

You may be thinking; “what does HE mean by that?” Obsessing over an alcoholic is our biggest problem in this situation. The constant looming thoughts in our heads are taking up precious space in our minds. With that being said, don’t allow them to rent space in your head. Find things to do which will change your focus. Read books, exercise, go to the movies or talk to a friend on the phone. Find things that will help your mind DETACH from thinking about them.

Learn to Take Care of Yourself

In the midst of your extremely busy life, learn how to take “out time” for yourself. The alcoholic may not like it that you are doing something to make your SELF happy. That’s OK… do it anyway! When they approach you afterward, just say; “I’m sorry you fell that way” and go into another room.

Understand that alcoholics keep us angry and anxious. We must do things for ourselves in the detachment process regardless of what they think about us. If you are a woman, get your hair and nails done. If you are a man go golfing, fishing or go for a walk. Taking time out to get a massage works really well for relieving stress. You can count on meeting resistance from them, but you have to start taking care of yourself regardless of what they think.

Detaching From What They Think

Because an alcoholic uses anger to try and control us, we must not get upset when they voice their disapproval of when we take care of ourselves. If you get involved with alcoholism support group meetings, the alcoholic will try to goof up your plans. They might say something like; “why are you going to those stupid meetings?” It’s possible they will try to create an argument with you just prior to you leaving for a meeting. It doesn’t matter what they say. Take care of yourself and make your support group meetings and recovery literature the most important part of your life.

Detaching From The Phone

You have a choice…you can either answer the phone or not answer it. You also have another choice. You can either listen to a message they have left you or delete it without listening. YOU DON’T HAVE TO LET THEM UPSET YOU ON THE PHONE. If they are getting out of hand, kindly say; “I’m going to hang up now. I’ll talk to you later.” Then gently hang up the phone. If they leave you nasty messages, don’t listen to them. If the start calling you repeatedly, don’t answer the phone. This is how we detach form the negative influences that an alcoholic has on our lives.

In a sense we are protecting our own emotional self.

How to Stop Arguing With an Alcoholic
Detaching from the old behaviors of arguing with them takes a while. You will have to learn how to keep your mouth shut. When you sense an argument is starting, tell them that you love them or really care about them and then say; “I don’t care to discuss this right now.” You can then go into a different room, close the door and read a book or watch TV. It doesn’t matter what you do…just find something to do other than to argue with them. Learning how to not fight with an alcoholic takes time. This is why it’s important to get involved in support-group meetings for friends and family of alcoholics.

Detaching from the way we have been doing things is a huge subject. We must learn how to separate ourselves from feelings of guilt and shame.

How To Enjoy More Peace and Serenity

  • We learn how to avoid getting into arguments.
  •  We stop getting into the car and driving around to try and find them.
  •  We quit snooping around in their stuff trying to find their stash.
  • We stop obsessing over the alcoholic’s behaviors.
  • We learn how to just get in bed and go to sleep when they aren’t home late at night.
  • We detach from confronting the lies.
  • We learn how to let go and let God deal with them.
  • We stop calling them to check up on them.

There are so many things effecting your life right now from the alcoholic’s behaviors that it’s going to take a while to learn how to do things differently. Little by little, “one day at a time” things will get better as you learn more about how to detach from an alcoholic.

When dealing with an alcoholic, learning loving detachment techniques is vitally important. As we grow in knowledge about alcoholism and how to handle dysfunctional situations better, we start understanding that enabling and detaching are very closely related.

As you continue reading you will learn various methods of separating yourself in a loving way from the destructive behaviors of someone else who is close in your life. These lessons can be applied to many different types of relationships.

The more co-dependent we are and enmeshed with someone, the harder it is to distinguish where we begin and they end. When they are happy, we also are happy. When they are angry our emotions are affected in a negative way as well. We can learn how to not flow with the mood swings of an alcoholic. It’s just going to take making a few changes and doing that “one day at a time.” Remember to go easy on yourself. These changes are all about making progress and not necessarily about doing everything perfectly. If you mess up, just start over.

Let me just trow out a few…

Suggestions That Will Help You Detach from an Alcoholic:

  • Get involved in Al-anon support group meetings. Al-anon is a great organization to try.
  • Read literature on the subject
  • Start developing friendships with people from your support-group meetings
  • Take notes during meetings
  • Start keeping a journal
  • Make this new lifestyle the number one priority in your life

Now here are a few…

Methods of Detaching From A Problem Drinker:

  • Kindly say, ” goodbye” and hang up the phone
  • Refuse to listen to phone messages after you hang up and they frantically call you over and-over again.
  • Quit investigating what they are doing
  • Read books or go visit with friends
  • Shut your mouth when you are angry at them and go into another room
  • Don’t look at them trying to figure out if they’ve been drinking
  • Get your own life by doing things you enjoy doing without them
  • Don’t allow them to rent space in your head,. Stop thinking about them all the time
  • Arguing with an alcoholic accomplishes nothing. Refuse to partake in the chaos
  • Let go of them completely and stop trying to control their behaviors
  • Go for walks
  • Talk on the phone to friends or relatives
  • Take up hobbies again

When We Start Detaching-We Stop Enabling.

This new way of acting will allow the alcoholic to suffer the consequences of their actions and also help them to reach their bottom. In separating ourselves from all of their drama, we in turn,  experience more peace and serenity in our own personal lives. Loving the alcoholic by letting go is the goal of this detachment process that we are learning about.

Separating ourselves as an individual in a co-dependent relationship takes time. As we continue attending alcoholism support group meetings and set goals to better our personal lives, it becomes easier to lovingly remove ourselves from the alcoholic’s behaviors. Being kind to an alcoholic will become easier as we learn how to love them differently. Again, this is not something that will happen overnight.

Avoiding The Sting
As time goes on, we begin to recognize the times in which associating with them would not be a good idea. As we continue to learn detachment methods, the sting of alcoholism occurs less frequently.  This works very much like hanging out around a bee hive. As long as you don’t stick your nose in the hive and keep a safe distance, you won’t get stung.

The hard part of detachment from an alcoholic is breaking habitual patterns that we have been doing for a long time. This “just takes time.”  I’ve heard it said:  “if you walk a hundred miles in the woods,  don’t expect to walk out in an hour.”  The same applies to being obsessed with an alcoholic. It takes time and effort to break free from our destructive behavior patterns that we have become accustomed to.

As we begin to detach more from all of their drama, we quit enabling them to depend upon us. It’s hard to do at first because we are so used to rescuing them from everything. When we quit rescuing them and let them suffer the consequences of their actions, we are less affected by their behaviors.

Detaching from an alcoholic means that we let go of them. It doesn’t mean that we quit loving or caring about them. We just learn how to mind our own business and start living our own lives as they continue to drink. Even though we may still get frustrated with an alcoholic, we will react differently  so that WE will remain more calm and experience greater levels of peace within ourselves.

Today-
Consider making a list of things that you enjoy doing and start doing them. This can help tremendously in the process of changing our focus.

The alcoholic may not like our changes in behavior, OH WELL! We have to be strong as we start doing things differently. This is why we need the support  of  support group meetings and of friends who know how to help us change.

Loving detachment from alcoholism means that we don’t make decisions based upon the alcoholic’s opinions, moods  or advice in relation to our life. We eventually begin to be hardly affected by their destructive behaviors, views and attitudes toward us.

Now …I know I’ve shared a lot in this session, but just remember to do the best that you can “one day at a time.”

Written By: JC

 

 


515 comments to Detaching From An Alcoholic

  • Eileen

    I want to speak to Brett, who wrote a few months ago. I hope things are better for you. It saddens me to hear you inside this web that the alcoholic entangles their loved ones in. If your situation has not changed, I would strongly encourage you to participate in Alanon and work the 12 steps through that program, for you own sanity. If your girlfriend has continued to drink, nothing you say or do will stop her. You are not devoted or powerful enough to make that happen and her behavior has nothing to do with anything you have or have not done. A practicing alcoholic is a very sick person. You can see that while you are attempting to talk to her, she isn’t rational. I am a recovered Alcoholic so I know exactly what I did and now I understand why. Blaming and Believing I was a victim was my MO. It’s how I operated and it’s what your girlfriend is doing. When you leave her she becomes desperate and even terrified but it is only in that state that she will seek help. It isn’t your fault. It isn’t fair to you to live with such stress, manipulation, being made to feel as though you are a bad person, or to feel like a victim yourself. Alanon will teach you to detach and take care of yourself, which is your right. You deserve to be involved in a healthy relationship and this one is sick, she is sick. She has a disease but that doesn’t mean you have to suffer too. She has to seek treatment and you do not have to be there in order for her to do that. It is okay for you to walk away. You are not a bad person. If you find that one day she has stopped drinking and has a strong working program, if you want to, you can revisit the idea of reuniting. Until then, all you will get out of this relationship is sickness that is going to take you down. You do not deserve that. You deserve healthy and happy and stable and consistently reliable and trustworthy. I wish the very best for you.

  • Catherine

    Hi all, very happy to find this page. My ah does is not aware that his illness is a progressive one and thinks he can stop when he will be “able” to, because of his position. His position is the perfect job for an alcoholic. Speeches, travelling all over the world, dinners, networking, more drinking, all expenses paid. His job takes up 70 percent of the year away from us ( I have a 7 year old son), and recently, since his drinking has become much worse, I am thanking God for it. But I have a question: is it too early to talk about it with my son? It is starting to become obvious when he is at home ( a newish thing as he used to not drink at home). His father is an alcoholic. I want to say that his father is “doing well” but he relapses regularly. He has two older daughters who I believe are not aware of this problem. Should I be the one to speak to them about it? He avoids them when he is drinking so they are not really aware of it, but he is seeing them less and less, which is causing resentment from their part. They don’t know why. I spend more time with his family than he does. Any thoughts?

  • Amy

    Glad I ran across this. Yesterday I left my boyfriends house and his asked me to call when I got home. I tried calling his phone once I arrived. No answer. I left message that I was home safely. Went about my business and went to dinner with a friend. That is a big no-no to him. Not allowed to have friends, male or female. While having dinner he called my phone repeatedly over and over. (Let me add this is a good 5 hours after I left his house). I did not answer. I did listen to a couple of the message. They were really nasty. Finally after I got done dinner, (didn’t answer his calls for about an hour, while eating), I picked up the phone and he accused me of all sorts of things, like I had stopped on the way home and has sex with someone. Accused me of having sex with my female friend, my cousin, whoever else he wanted to throw into the picture. I was stupid and replied, that I had left his home 6 hours ago and for the first 5 he didn’t call and now that I didn’t answer my phone for an hour then I am the one who was up to something? He hung up, I did not call back. Today he never called me, so I waited til 1 to call his phone and of course, no answer. He finally called back once again 5-6 hours later and blasted me as soon as I answered that he didn’t answer his phone because he knew I was out doing something with someone last night. What the hell is that?! I try so hard not argue and just feel like from now on I’m best not answer his calls at all. If he is sober when he leaves a message I will call back, otherwise just ignore the calls? Is this the right thing to do? Also, I posted somewhere else about how to remove myself from the area when he gets verbally abusive. If I’m at his house I have a 2 hour drive home. There is no where to go when he starts his rants. I can sit there for no exaggeration 2 hours and listen to him go on and on and repeat the same thing over and over, and not say one word back, but believe me it is hard. What do I do and where do I go when he does this?? It’s winter here so its not like I can go for a walk and I don’t know anyone out by where he lives. Do I go rent a motel room for the night just to get away from him?? I’ve tried asking him nicely to please just stop. If I get up and go in the bedroom/bathroom he will follow me and continue. Sometimes I just get so depressed that I actually put up with this that I wish I could just leave die. Anyone else ever feel this way?

  • June

    Stop going to see him. You don’t to marry into this. You were looking for someone when you met him…keep looking.

  • Denise

    just read JC’s do’s and don’t’s – again. They sure do help!

  • Ruth

    Thank you for this wonderful site. It has provided me with much information. I was involved with a man from February until September. He told me he was in rehab and decided to go on a date. Let me say I figured him out quickly, but didn’t listen to the bells and whistles. I experienced the emotional blackmail, blaming, lying, verbal insults. Every week it was something that he found fault and would cause a disagreement. March we officially started to date and Mother’s Day weekend I ended it, but it lingered. A relapse occur we which wasn’t a huge surprise. Sucidual threats, begging and pleading. I still wanted to encourage his journey, but from a distance. I had set my own boundaries for myself. Whenever he did something, my foot got closer to the door. He went back into another rehab and I decided to see him. The second time I made the mistake of kissing him and feelings and words of a second chance, but quickly realized I was falling into the same pattern. Again row and I distance myself more. Letters were written, but nothing could be changed. In September once again my personal space was invaded because of his feelings. A light went on and I realize this will always be unless I change it and I did. I blocked his number and on a social media. I told him we need time apart. An olive branch was offered, but when I have no answer, the verbal insults flew like rockets. He has contacted me twice, but I am quite done. I came out of this with no battle wounds. I learned more about myself in these few months. There is some sadness for the dream we had. I accepted him, but he can’t accept me or anyone for that matter because he can’t accept him.

  • Eleanor

    Thanks to this article i realize how deep i am in all of this. I am a mother of a 3 year old little girl and my second child is due in 2 months. my husband is an alcoholic, that being said i bet alot of people might understand all of my concerns. after being lied to so many times and hurt so many times how am i supposed to trust anything i say. i told him the other night that if i take him at his word im empty handed and feeling burned i have tryed to move out, even give him eviction noticed and some how in the end its allways my fault and i take the blame and cant seem to find the courage to walk away and give my family the stability they need is disconnecting from obsessing going to help the situation and keep my family safe thats all that i want to keep everyone safe, and healthy want him to get the help he needs and be there for him yet it seems like the only thing that i need from him is too much to ask thats the truth. whats next.

  • Eleanore,

    Reading your post is like looking in the mirror for me. I was in the same situation 3 yr old son, another due shortly and my dependence on him left us homeless and alone. After being evicted from yet another home and dragging my two older daughters from my first husband through the tragedies that come with being homeless like sleeping on family and friend’s floors, I found myself in my mothers tiny basement with a 3yr old and a newborn. Once again wondering where he was and when he would be home. Only this time I get the phone call telling me he’s just been arrested on his third dui and totaled the only thing I had left, my jeep. So now I am stuck with no way out, no home and a family that I can’t support. By the way, I am disabled from falling off the roof and breaking my back while trying to hide from him during one of his alcoholic rants. So I answer the pleadings of “please stay and wait for me” for his year and half long sentence. He swears he’s done and everything will be fine we’ll go home as soon as he’s out and it’s going to be a great new life. Meanwhile I have to pay storage fees on all our belongings and phone calls to “keep his mind secure” at a two hundred fifty dollars a month. I don’t know how but I did it and I was so glad the day he came home, until he took us out to dinner, my money of course, and ordered a drink. My whole world fell apart, all those promises about no more drinking turned into “I can handle it” until pleading for it to stop was like talking to myself. I let him talk me into he can handle the money and six months later still at the bar everyday, no job, with me and the kids cooped up in a dark basement, he stopped paying on our storage unit. Now I really have nothing. Wait it gets better, that dreaded phone call came two months later, back in jail on another dui accident. Now my son is eight, my daughter is four, he got four more years. And me, I just turned 40, and still stuck in the basement with my kids on the floor. PLEASE don’t let this be you, get out and away while you still can. Your life doesn’t have to be a sob story. Good luck and God bless.

  • Christie

    Hope!
    You’re situation broke my heart and hit home all at once. Although my situation isn’t nearly as devastating as yours, I do understand why you took him back and how painful your life has been.

    My husband and I have been married for 15 years. He’s always been a drinker but never as bad as it’s been these last 5 years. 5 years ago he lost a job he loved and excelled at and he’s never recovered nor found another job that he’s been able to keep for long. So he drinks … a lot. Last year it got so bad his family tried an intervention and he went to a short stay detox. It was great! I got some much needed rest away from him and he was able to detox and come out with focus and started a new job. Well that job had way to much down time and had him working out of our home office. It didn’t take long before the drinking picked up again and last week he lost this job too.

    I work for a non-profit so my income is VERY minimal and living in the heart of Silicon Valley, I can’t afford to cover our already cheap rent. We used all of our savings and cashed out of our 401k when he lost the last job so I have nothing to fall back on. I’m scared to death of loosing the roof over my head and having to move back in with my parents. At 42, it’s hard to watch everything you worked for go down the drain because of this disease. My husband chose to live in his car and drink himself stupid for a week because he didn’t want to hear me “nag” him about his drinking or job loss. He’s racked up our credit cards over $10k (I’ve since closed them) and has applied for more credit cards in his name only and maxed those as well. Our debt is mounting … my anxiety is overwhelming and I feel like I’m going to loose my sanity any minute.

    I have a 24 year old daughter who still lives at home because the cost of living here is so high. She’s so disappointed in me for staying. She doesn’t understand that he’s all I know. My dad said something pretty profound. He said I was as addicted to this toxic relationship as my husband is to booze. It’s true. My husband is not physically or verbally abusive. He’s just emotionally unavailable, spends like we have money and makes hugely irrational decisions when he’s drinking. In turn, I’m irrational, angry, bitter, argumentative, and just plain sad all the time. I know arguing with a drunk is like beating your head into a wall but I can’t seem to stop. I can smell the booze on his breath and tell by the way he walks when he’s been drinking and it’s my trigger.

    I know I need to let him go. He needs to find his “bottom” but every time I think I’m ready, I take him back into my arms and fall for his lies again and again. Yesterday he slept in his car and I went to find him this morning. 8:30am and he’s at the bar just as I suspected with vodka on his breath. He blamed me of course. He was mad that I’d called him on his drinking the afternoon before. And he was even more angry that I was standing in front of him, crying, asking why he’s doing this. I left him as he said he’d be home later. I looked over my shoulder as I have more times than I can count and said “if you are going to drink, go home, pack your things and be gone before I get home”. Of course I meant it in that very moment but I know that if I go home and he’s gone, I’ll feel horrible. Why? I keep asking myself WHY do I want him? He’s “trying” AA but not to the full extent. A meeting then a drink. I wish I could find my “I don’t give a crap” button and switch in on. Instead I’m hear crying my eyes out because …. well I don’t event know why any more.

  • SJC

    Just for laughs…we all need to.
    Love Letters from Anxiety

    I’ve been wanting to share so much with you. I’ve been thinking long and hard about things that could probably, possibly, conceivably happen in both our near and distant future together. I want to help you prepare for them. I know that if we can anticipate everything that’s going to go wrong, then together we can develop plans, backup plans, and make sure we’ve covered every possible contingency.

    You see, I want to protect you from any harm – at any cost. I know how much you’ve been hurt in the past and I want to protect you from everything the future may have in store. I just want to put you in a bubble and keep you safe, just the two of us, with me holding you tightly.

    I want you to know that I have your back…and I will release it just as soon as this stress subsides. I’ve prepared a long list of things that need to happen, knowing that you’ll feel much better right after they do. I’m not sure why this list keeps growing, but rest assured (er, I mean, know that) – you’ll breathe easier (and deeper) once we get through this (oh, and that…).

    I don’t want you to listen to your gut. No, I don’t mean the sounds of your chronic indigestion, acid re flux and ulcers, I mean that bad advice your therapist is giving about trusting your intuition. What does she know about all the things that could happen? Listen to me. I have your best interest at heart and will protect you from the unfamiliar.

    Oh! And speaking of (rapidly beating) hearts. Please cut down on the caffeine and the tread mill. I know you’re tired and want to be healthy, but the increased pulse rate really makes me very nervous. I can’t help but flare up. I think we’d both be much happier if you just have a few glasses of wine to relax in the evenings.

    I know you’re struggling with your memory these days but please remember that people are not to be trusted. I will remind you endlessly of what happened when you did in the past. I will regale you with tales of your childhood and how disappointing everything always was whenever you weren’t in charge.

    I want you to feel like you’re in control of everything. Your plans are the best ones. Your way of doing things is so much better than anyone else’s and the outcomes you seek will be attained if we just get everyone on the same (your) page.

    And speaking of pages; I’ve been monitoring your Facebook. I’m a little concerned about some of the folks you haven’t heard from recently. I’m thinking that we may have upset them at some point. It’s the only reason I can think of as to why they’re not posting on your wall. I’ve selected a huge number of memes (with kittens!) for you to post on their walls to let them know how wonderful your friendship with them is. I know these are just women you know from PTO, work, and little league but it’s important to keep things going smoothly!

    Facebook friends are the best kind. Who has time for any other type? If we don’t allow anyone to get too close to us then we’ll be ok. I’ll keep you very busy and we’ll have a very nice and organized house together. We’ll make lists together daily and make sure that things are right where they’re supposed to be!

    I also wanted to let you know I’m on top of plans for your daughter’s birthday. I want it to be nothing short of PERFECT. I mean last year was great but I really think that with a few extra touches this year could be truly memorable. Getting a bounce house and a caterer is a small expense for a five year old’s happiness. I’ll come up with ways to talk that unreasonable husband of yours into it.

    Oh! And speaking of that man of yours; I’ve been paying a little extra attention to that wandering eye of his. He’s been especially helpful to that new neighbor (the one with the really perky boobs). I hate her and am working on strategies to alienate her from the rest of the women in the neighborhood.

    I don’t want you to worry…but I do want you to know that while you are beautiful to me, I am a little concerned about some of these lines I’m noticing across your forehead and under your eyes. I’ve been hearing these radio ads for that cosmetic surgeon in town and I’ve prepared a list of things to discuss with them. It’s ok – they have easy financing available! I just want you to look your best.

    I love you and will never let you go,
    Anxiety

  • SJC

    The above comes from Recovery Rocks. A lot of articles.

  • SJC

    Ok. I sent this to a long time friend of mine and she thought it was kinda odd. This is what I told her. Someone else may thinks it’s odd too. But i see the humor.

    I noticed that my xah would take something ( including our marriage, unfairness at work) and just think about it very negative until it was down in the ground. Negative self talk.

    I have another article that confirms this. It said.
    As one area of their life declines they will often focus their attention on it and take it to an extreme.

    This kind of self talk can keep them drinking.

    The person that wrote it….
    Executive Director of Higher Ground Services in Brewer, Maine.

    He is a Recovery Ally, mental health therapist and addictions counselor. He specializes in facilitating recovery (whether from addiction, trauma, depression, anxiety, or past abuse).

    Here I am explaining myself…the negative effects of growing up in an a home and being the scapegoat.

  • Denise

    just read “love letters from anxiety”. Too funny. Too true. Those very private thoughts.Secretive, yet they can drag you down so fast. Happens to me once in a while because of my ah. He doesn’t say anything. it’s his actions that trigger these horrid, caustic emotions.Hiding his booze and thinking I don’t get it that he goes outside or in the basement and drinks. He wears his drinking on his face. that may sound silly but his skin is always red and he looks horribly tired. Hmmmm wonder how his vital organs and bones are doing? I used to be concerned. Now I concentrate on my life and my wonderful sons. I have chosen a different path. 35 yrs. ago I never would have thought I would be “alone”. Yes, it is sad. My Mother would have cried and I would have told her it’s o.k Mom, I’ll be fine. There’s a lot to see and do when I retire. I may go out to the West Coast and stay……for a while. Palm trees and Benz’s 🙂
    We will all be fine in the end. It’ s sorting through someone else’s “poor,poor, pitiful me” crap that is wasting our time. We’ll be fine. Believe in yourself. Have a great weekend.

  • Angela

    I read a comment by Denise who told me to have a great weekend. She posted it a year and a half ago. I will have a great weekend Denise. My AH will Most likely be miserable in his half way house. He may stay sober or he may drink or make bad decisions. I could choose to lament the fact that after 22 years of marriage, I am alone with my 4 kids, living in my parents’ house. I could complain that I may likely never have another romantic relationship, and that I have so much less money because of his actions. I could cry about the fact that my children are scarred by his unpredictable, frightening abandonment of them. Sometimes I do complain of these things, but not right now. Instead, I plan to have a great weekend. I plan to swim with my kids. I plan to chat with friends from church at a picnic. I plan to go to summer water aerobics. I plan to read to my kids, go to the movies with my kids, play and laugh with my kids. I will thank God and my lucky stars that my children are well and safe, and that I am as well. I will rejoice that my parents support me, love my kids and want us to live here. I will feel a deep feeling of peace and safety in my home and especially in my bedroom, which is my retreat from the world. No, my life isn’t perfect, but whose is? I feel happiness and peace that I never felt when I was living with an alcoholic. To those of you still living with an alcoholic in your home, make the changes you need to in order to have a great weekend.

  • Christie

    So much has changed in the past year. Reading my entry from February 19th, 2015 at 4:21pm brought me to my knees. I’d forgotten I’d even posted on this site. I was such a mess on this day. I didn’t know it but I was about to lose my job within days and the mounting stress at home was driving me into the looney bin. My AH did come home but the situation escalated over the next few months. Was lost my job in late February, but found a new one in mind March. I tried to hold our marriage together the best I could but he chose to drink instead of looking for a job and the resentment in me only grew. One evening I got a call from a local restaurant that he has walked into a wall and split his head open. I went to “rescue” him not realizing it would be for the last time. I brought him home, carried him out of the car and into the house. My daughter held his head in her hands while she cleaned the blood off. At that moment it clicked. I was done. This was only going to get worse and I know knew the addiction was more than just booze. This was not something I could fix and he wasn’t willing to.

    I filed for divorce in May send him to his sisters. His addiction because much much worse as I was no longer there to “monitor” his life. He could do as he chose and boy he sure did. I never stopped loving him though. In December of 2015 our divorce was final and he was continuing his reckless choices. I completely detached from him. It was the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do. On April 20th at 9pm I got “that” call. The one we know would come … the one I wasn’t ready to hear. On April 20th he spent the day drinking and drugging. On April 20th … he got behind the wheel yet again but this time he wasn’t as lucky as he’d been before. This time he died. I’m so thankful that he didn’t hurt anyone else. It could have been so much worse. But on April 20th we lost him.

    That was two months ago this past Monday. I’m still numb. Still emotionless. Still waiting to “feel” something other than empty. I’m bitter, sad, resentful, hurt but most of all I miss him. Now there will never be recovery for him …. for us. I wasn’t prepared for this.

  • Brett

    Eileen had asked a while back how I was and if I was still in the situation where my Alcoholic GF was manipulating me emotionally and taking advantage of me. I can’t tell any of you that leaving your alcoholic will make things better, but it did for me. I put up with much more mental abuse and manipulation, including a suicide attempt, where she swore at me while in the hospital because I would not sign her out, and threatened to call her ex-bf, whom she had already cheated on me with. I finally convinced her to go to Rehab, which I paid for, and I thought it had worked, but 3 weeks after getting out, she started drinking and lying again. The final straw was on the night she started drinking again, she told me to get out of the house and she hated me. I left and never went back. I had had enough. Everyone told me I would know when I had had enough, and they were right. I had come to the end of my rope. She begged me to come back many times after that, and even tried to manipulate me with sex, but I did not fall for it any more. Sadly, she fell even further. She was having sex with random me, she lost her job, her townhouse, her car, and eventually the 2 teenage boys still living with her moved out, one with a friend, the other with his father. None of her kids talk to her any more. I stopped talking to her. I heard, through mutual friends, that she is finally sober now and dating a guy she met her first month in AA, but I don’t care. I will never go back there again. It was too damaging. I cost me one of my best friends.

    On the plus side, I met a wonderful woman about a year ago and we just got married. For a long time I thought that many of the problems I had with my alcoholic ex- were me. She convinced me I was too demanding, too much of a perfectionist, too hard to get along with. Now I know none of that is true. I have a very healthy relationship with my wife. We don’t fight much, and if we do we both keep it respectful and civil and we are able to resolve things. The big difference is she is mature and confident and independent. There is no drama with her, and my life is calm and pleasant for a change. I do not miss my alcoholic ex- at all. For me, leaving made all the difference. I hope some of you who continue to be tortured by an alcoholic find the courage to leave and find happiness without them. Don’t let a miserable drunk ruin your life.

  • Gina

    Hi.. I’ve read several postings and I really got some understanding . But I don’t know how much longer I can hold on. When he gets drunk which is every day..he is verbally abusive to me.. I think I am at the point of almost hating him and being resentful.. When he is sober he is such a good man bit the minute he starts drinking his personality and demeanor changes. How do I cope. I’ve thought of leaving him many times..

  • Tinoz

    My alcoholic boyfriend has tried to get sober afew times since we started our relationship 3 yrs ago. The longest preiod of sobriety he could maintain was 6 months with help with meds, it was in the 1st yr of our relationship.He relapsed for a month, went back on track for 3 months and relapsed again for a few months. I tried joining Al-Anon, read articles on this site to learn how detach and to look after myself better. This year was the worst, he went full on binging after losing his job, went to India and Nepal to find answers, came back disappointed. Back to binge drinking, and just out of the blue he told his cousin he wanted to go to rehab, his boss from his older job helped by introducing him to a doctor. The doctor said my bf didn’t seem to need to be kept in a rehab. My bf was very moody in the first few weeks, he got angry and irritated easily. Luckily ehat I have learned from Al-Anon and this site helped me coped by detaching with love. I used to check whether he would take his meds or not, I was obsessed. But then i decided to leave it to him, it’s his recovery and he had to be responsible for it, not me. I stopped checeking his meds and asking if he’d taken his medicine. Our relationship improved, he seemed to really want to stay sober. One thing that I’ve been trying to get him to do is to go to counseling, I even offered to go with him. But he never wanted to go, his pride and the society where he is from, teaches men to fend for themselves and only weak crazy people go to get help from psychiatrists or psychologists. The past 3 months have been great, with some days when he couldn’t control his anger and yelled. He did not take his meds regularly, still thinking he could do as he wished, I didn’t say anything as I was detaching. He relapsed 2 days ago, he made an elaborate story to convince me that he was going out of town for work while he was actually going out drinking with his friends. I actually knew that he has already invited people to go out with him, but I detached, didn’t confront him and let him do what he wanted to do. I would be lying if I didn’t hope he wouldn’t go through with it and that maybe he changed his plan for work. Well, he has been drunk since Wednesday night,verbally abusive to me yesterday when he came home because I refused to do something for him. I decided to stay at a friend’s place, cause I was really at lost. His cousin took his phone and bank cards away yesterday. Last night i got a call from him saying that my boyfriend had called him from a bar, yelling to him and asked him to friends the phone, one of the bar’s staff talked to the cousin demanding him to pay 500 dollars for my bf’s drinks or they’d call the police. The cousin didn’t give in. I don’t know ehere my bf is now, probably locked in a police station somewhere, or maybe at home after pawning stuff to pay for his drinks last night. I have been trying to detach, the only thing I haven’t tried is to give him an ultimatum to sober up or I leave. My friends have suggested it, but my love has been stopping me from doing it. Maybe it will be the push that he needs to sober up for good….

  • Lillie

    Thank you all. It has been great to find this resource. Married almost 4 years.Lots of hurt anger resentment. Learning how to let it go. He’s hit me pushed me accused me everything all have writtten about. I’m working on detaching. It feels good. I don’t want to end up continuing to wish he was dead.

  • David

    It was so good to find this website and read the comments of others here.
    Brett’s experience is so similar to mine.
    I repeatedly took my alcoholic girlfriend back but things never got better.
    I’ve come to the conclusion that all alcoholics are con artists.
    The lies and manipulation and lack of shame they have knows no bounds.
    Incredibly hurtful when you think you are doing everything in your power to make things better for them.
    I read that only 10% of alcoholics manage to quit for good. That’s a depressing statistic but worth bearing in mind if you are considering staying with your alcoholic partner.
    I truly loved this woman and did my best for her from day one,(we were together for two years), its been so hurtful to experience first hand that no person can compete with the alcohol. The alcohol always wins, sadly.
    I wish everyone here luck, and the strength to move on when everything else has failed.

  • Mike

    Was with one for 14. Years get out while you can
    It’s holding you back from finding the right woman
    It will never change

  • My husband died 14 months ago due to alcoholism, we were married 34 years, His death did set me free.
    I could not have handled another week.

  • Yvonne

    Has anyone had any experience with having their alcoholic loved one chaptered? My husband is clearly a danger to himself and others. It requires a three party petition in my state.

  • Bev

    Hello everyone,

    I have been invited to many of these topics and encouraged to read and or comment for my betterment and that of others. Fully understanding the premise does not solve the heartbreak I read, as I peruse to stories of so many kindred spirits. Though I have my own story I’ve never shared here, I find little encouragement in so many of the comments I read. It seems there are 3 main bottom-lines:
    1- wait for your loved one to die
    2- leave your loved one
    3- resign yourself to a life of lies, hurtful words, and dealing with the ultra selfish.

    I found JC’s tapes instrumental in understanding ways of deal with an alcoholic loved one. But the reason I have been shy about commenting is I have nothing of value to say. We all are going through our personal version of hell on this earth, and I – quite simply – leave this forum more depressed than when I entered. I’m 7 years in and find the easiest way to survive is just leave him alone, to do what he does (for himself) best. Is that working for me? No, because I love him. But at 58-years-old I’m too tired to move on.

  • patti

    Reading through the recent posts on this page today, I’ve had an epiphany. I’m going to begin preparations to leave. I was planning to have an intervention for my AH, to see if he had any interest in addressing his drinking problem. I don’t think it will do any good, it’ll just be a waste of money we don’t have. 2 or 3 times I’ve asked him if he’d consider slowing down or quitting drinking, and each time he said “No way”. Last week I wrote him a message in response to his trying to seduce me, which he often does when he’s drunk, never does when he’s sober. I wrote that I love him, but I don’t like his drinking, that I like being around him, but don’t want to be around him when he’s drinking. That I Won’t have sex with him when he’s drinking, that talking with him is the worst when he’s drinking, because he doesn’t listen. I said that I’m hoping that our marriage can be saved, but that I cannot keep living with his drinking. I left the card for him and he read it and hung it on our refrigerator with a magnet. He’s never mentioned receiving my card or any feelings about it, and he hasn’t changed his behaviors at all. When I met this man, I was unaware of the progressive disease called alcoholism. After we were married, I discovered that he was in rehab for “Opium” before he moved to my area. I’ve recently found and read his big blue book, trying as always to find ways to understand and cope with him. He knows I’ve been in Al-Anon for 2 years, but he doesn’t comment on that either. I’ve got Al-Anon literature all over my house, which I read often. When I stay at home, his behavior creeps me out, so I’ve hooked up with other activities that keep me away most nights. I’ve now become so busy that it’s affecting my own well being, I’m really sleep debted. All my running away is a temporary bandage that has now become a self inflicting wound. He probably thinks it’s funny when he sees all the gymnastics I’ve been performing and all he has to do is hold down his job and drink all night. I gotta get away so I can get my life back and a fresh start!

  • c

    I am writing on a mini iPad at Panera! The posts, as usual, are amazing. What I realized and gather from the heartfelt posts, is that the A only gets worse if they don’t stop drinking.

    I could have been a perfect person and the terrible outbursts would have happened anyhow. No one can live so isolated for long. The A will drain your cheerful personality and ruin every single day.

    Wishing everyone the strength to really see their situation for what it it and make decisions that are truly beneficial for peace and health.

  • Heather

    I am in the process of getting my three children and I out of the chaos that is my AH. 7.5 years. Despite everything I’ve said and done to keep our family together…despite everything I’ve tolerated, including verbal/emotional abuse…he continues to drink. And he’s drinking more all the time. The abuse is getting worse. His physical and mental states are deteriorating rapidly. I’m struggling with migraines and anxiety attacks. Not just from living with him but from trying to get out and into a new home and life. Al-Anon helps. My family is supportive. But I’m SO angry and resentful that this person I’m married to has done all this damage and couldn’t care less. Just keeps doing his selfish thing and never even considers doing anything different. Such a selfish disease. I’m so exhausted and sick of this nonsense. Just needed to vent.

  • Quan

    I am so glad that I found this website. I am 23years old and I have been dealing with an alcoholic lover for maybe about a year now he’s 47 I been through so much with him.My current situation is that we now live in a motel reason being is because he got us evicted out of the apartment we was living in. I guess you can say the reason why I’m still with him is because I care for him? But it hurts so much me simply talking to him triggers his drinking he said he doesn’t know how to cope well? Yesterday at 11:00 he left and went to a class that’s for his work, he said that it as suppose to be for maybe a couple hours. The clock stricked 7 I didn’t hear anything from him so I decided to give him a call to my surprise he turned his phone off I called continuously still no answer or reply. So now at 6:56 am next morning still no answer. Right now my question is should I continue to help him by me helping him with a place to stay am I holding him back yo getting better

  • Sadie

    I am 40, been a single mother for most of my life, decided to date again and hooked up with a very charming guy, whom I fell in love with. 2 years into our relationship, I started experiencing some unpleasant behavior, some controlling behavior, irratic/ spontanious behavior- being quite naive to alcoholism- I thought this behavior was just temporary and the struggles would pass, most of the time, they did so I kept telling myself “work through this, I love him” but 6 years later- it all has come crashing down. I am experiencing the worst I’ve ever felt. I’m accused, anything I do to help or anything I do at all is never good enough because I receive complaints constantly. I’m criticised and lashed out at- even with things he does (projection) His financial habits are beyond my comprehension- his reasoning even more so. I can’t stand the thought of going on like this. I am so hurt, so resentful, I feel so silly for being naive. I want out, I’m terrified of the breakup. I am so greatful to learn techniques to help, and to know I’m not alone. I want nothing more than to be myself again- live a healthy normal life. I wish you all the best.

  • Vlad

    Sadie, your comment shows a great deal of self-awareness and understanding. You are in a frustrating and abusive situation, but the fact that you’re not in denial about it is very fortunate. Your situation would be worse if you refused to see the truth. The fact that you see the truth makes this situation painful, because deep down you know what needs to happen, and it’s not going to be pleasant while the breakup is happening, but deep down you know that the breakup is necessary. It’s necessary for you and it’s necessary for your children. There are a lot of things in life that feel difficult and unpleasant while they are happening, but bring huge benefits when they are done. The pain of exercise, for example. It’s painful and frustrating while you are doing it, and it makes you want to stop trying just to make the pain go away, but if you just push through, it WILL get easier and you will know beyond a shadow of a doubt that you made the right choice, and you will be grateful and proud of yourself for doing the right thing. Being an adult often requires doing the right thing even when it is painful and difficult. It is exactly what your alcoholic partner is unable to do. He will only ever treat you as good as he treats himself, and if he is mistreating himself and making bad financial decisions and bad life decisions, it means he does not respect himself enough to make good choices and move his life towards improvement. So, if he cannot do these things for himself, what makes you think he will smarten up and treat you better?

    There are some people on this site who will tell you that cutting off contact is not the way to go. I am on the opposite side of the argument, and I believe that cutting off contact with alcoholics is the ONLY way to go. It is necessary for both of you. It’s necessary for you to free yourself from the abuse, and it’s necessary for him to see the consequences of his own actions, and for him to understand the reality of personal boundaries. Other people are not just going to be extensions of himself, they are not there to feed his addiction, but they have their own feelings and needs and have the right to make choices about who they surround themselves with. The longer you go without breaking up with him, the more he thinks his actions do not have consequences. The best thing for him is to experience the consequences of his actions. And the best thing for you is to stay away from crazy-making people, and just spend some time on your own recovery.

    All the best to you!

  • Dear Sadie,

    I know you are terrified of breaking up but you need to do just that. This man is not healthy for you and is very toxic. Please check out my youtube channel for help with this.

    It is going to take courage and a bit of risk, but you deserve better and you need to end things and move on. There are high quality men out there for you and you don’t need to settle for being the scapegoat to someone’s abuse and choice.

    LauraBeth

  • Ellen

    I left my alcoholic years ago. He was the love of my life. I still have times when I think of him and wonder how it would have been if I had stayed. It may take me a few minutes until I hit the wall of reality and KNOW it would only have gotten worse. I lived in hope that he would change. It does NOT happen. So good luck to everyone here. Go to AlAnon…take care of YOURSELF. Stop being codependent. God bless.

  • I know how you feel. I am in a relationship just like yours. My alcoholic can be great one minute and then the next minute, he is yelling at me and other types of abuse. I really admire you for what you are doing. You must think of yourself and your kids. Be strong and don’t try to 2nd guess yourself. Do what your heart tells you to do.

  • Rhonda

    Vlad,
    Your comments to Sadie were right on.
    I needed to hear this as well. 😉
    Wishing you all peace and prosperity.

  • Steve

    Hi Sadie
    I am 3 months on my own. Been with my wife for 20 years. She is struggling with her demons. I am looking after 2 kids. Missing her. But I can focus on moving forward. She is drunk most days. Me and the kids are happy. I don’t know the future, but today is fine.
    Look after yourself.

  • Kim

    I totally understand , I’ve been there , I married one , separated 5 yrs ago then divorced him in march , but I still can’t seize allcommunication , hardest thing ever !!!! To completely let go ! I hate that I can’t , it drives me insane to know the disfunctional marriage still has a stronghold on me even after I divorced him ! I think I’ll always be work in progress , I hate that I fell in love with an alcohol !

  • Bee

    Take it from someone who was in your shoes. YOU ARE ONLY JUST NOW SEEING A SMALL PART OF WHAT TOXIC AND HORRIBLE THINGS ARE ACTUALLY GOING ON. Once you are completely away from the relationship and realize that you have been with not only an alcoholic but also a narcissistic sociopath, will you see more and more of what has been done. It isn’t easy. But getting through to the other side does give you strength and peace. Trust your instincts. Be aware. At all times be aware. As often as the alcohol is hidden, so are your personal account information, identity, finances, and even manipulation tactics. Your life may seem like a bad movie. Surround yourself with family and friends and focus on your children. GET OUT!!

  • Tina

    I have made my son move out on his own. He now lost another job and I am concerned. I am trying to still use the tough love and I have told him that he will not come back to our house. This is such a terrible disease. I really appreciate the advice above. I try to stick with it every day. and yes it is very hard to do this.

  • AnneT

    Hi Sadie. I have broken up with my boyfriend over n over. Each time – I promise I won’t drink again. Was told at a treatment centre at a concerned persons meeting (a meeting where you share your feelings with others and the alcoholic how his drinking affects you). He cried when I shared. Therapist charing meeting explained in that moment they really do mean that. At that meeting I said if he drank again I ws leaving and this time I would have to follow it though. That was 4 weeks ago after he was in treatment for 4 weeks. He is drinking again. The goalposts change but the end result is always the same. I want my normal life back too. Away from the hurt stress and worry. His drinking is his problem and although painful you can just walk away from it. Look after no1 really well (You).

  • Tyron

    I have been in a verbally abusive relationship with my alchoholic g/f for 8 months now. When she drinks which is every day after work and on the weekends she starts drinking at lunchtime. She gets really abusive when she drinks sometimes physically ….. we laugh a lot when she is sober and I really love her However the continuous abuse and guilt trips and anger even when she is sober is starting to wear me down. Even though I love her I have no choice here but to walk away . How do you let go and walk away when it’s breaking your heart to do so. For myself I know it’s what I have to do she is slowly destroying me …. but when we’re good we are so good …so it’s very sad that it has to end this way.
    I stand up for myself when she abuses me but I never abuse her back I always just tell her that I will not accept how she speaks to me …. and I walk out of the room which causes her to abuse me even more .when she is sober she sends me love songs and says that she never wants to lose me.and that she loves me very much . Today the abuse got too much …. I know what I have to do …… but don’t know how to do it without driving her to drink even more. Like I said I care very deeply for her and love her very much so would not want her to cause anymore harm to herself ….. how do I let go and walk away without doing that ?

  • Gary berube

    Have you talked to her about getting treatment.
    It sounds like She is an alcoholic and needs help
    You may be the only one that cares enough to help
    Her get there

  • Joey

    Tyron I feel your pain. I’ve been wuth an alcoholic binger off/on for 6 yrs. I had never been with an addict and didn’t know better. I packed my bags and was heading out the door at 6 months when he felt secure enough to let the addict come out. He begged, cried and pleaded for me not to go. He would stop drinking, blah blah. Nothing has changed. I wish I would’ve left. Now i have a sone with him who adores him. This relationship almost bankrupted me. We are not together officially but we don’t date other people and only see each other. We live separately. I’ve gotten my sanity back. He helps a lot with our son. When I lived with him this wasn’t the case. He would take it as a pass to binge almost daily because I took on all the daily responsibilities. I let go of pinning my happiness on his drinking. Much easier when you don’t live with them. Of course I would love to see him get treatment but I accept that is his choice and his path. The more i detach the better he treats me. I am responsible for me and my son. Now when we spend time together it’s usually sober and enjoyable. If the arguments start i am free to part ways. Believe me they adjust and accept it. We teach people how to treat us. We establish the habits through our daily choices. Ask yourself what habits you want to live by and make the corresponding choices. You can enjoy their company when it’s good for you and say no thank you when it’s not. The key is to stop trying to control their drinking. YOU HAVE ZERO POWER OVER IT. Unless you leave and cut off contact – this action for a few will cause then to take control of their lives or the opposite. You can’t worry about that. Their choice. You staying will only ensure that she will keep drinking, the abuse will get worse and your self esteem will crumble. It will only get harder to leave.

  • Kim

    Hi I know exactly what your going through. My husband and I have been married for 25 years. There’s a family history on his side and he started to do what your girlfriend did all of it. I had to kick him out. He even tried to kill him self it got really bad. He went to the hospital and before he was released I told him he couldn’t come back home.
    He finally got help went into counseling and AA. It’s a long path for recovery but if you really love someone you have to let them go. I hope in the end we can once again be a couple but that’s up to him.
    I couldn’t take the abuse anymore so walk away. For both of your sakes. If she loves herself then she will get help. I did it for love.

  • Deanna

    I have been with my alcoholic boyfriend for 29 years. He is a binge drinker and can never just have one,he has to get totally drunk everytime. I don’t really drink and he is driving me crazy..I have been searching for my own apt and cannot afford anything. We can never discuss anything as he just blows up and yells and nothing I ever say stops him from his pity party rant..How do you leave someone when you can’t afford to leave?? Any advise is welcome..He has had numerous DWI’s and lost his license 6 years ago..he was on probation for 5 years yet continued to drink throughout and violated twice but shmoozed his probation officer with some lie and didn’t go to jail. He is now off probation and drinking a 12 pack everyday. He works fulltime and I have brought him to and from work for 6 years! Feeling helpless and lost in codependency!

  • Tyrone, I am a lifecoach with 2 college degrees in Psychology.
    Currently, I have a youtube channel and other social media sites that help people in abusive relationships.

    Here is my opinion on what you shared:

    ANY ABUSE IS NOT OK, physical or otherwise and you do not need to put up with that or stay there for it.

    GUILT TRIPS AND ANGER also NOT OK EVER

    NO CHOICE BUT TO WALK AWAY…CORRECT SO DO IT!

    HOW TO WALK AWAY WHEN IT IS BREAKING YOUR HEART? Like jumping into a pool. Hold your breath a moment and JUMP IN! There is no easy way to break off a relationship. It must be done cleanly and immediately and you must grieve the loss, heal, do self-care and move on.

    WHEN WE ARE GOOD WE ARE SO GOOD is a “sick” sort of codependent relationship. There is no such thing as a BALANCED relationship based on “the good times only.” Not saying bad things won’t happen, but abuse should NOT be one of them. I once told someone “It’s supposed to be you and me against the harms of the world. Not you against me.” When that’s the case, it needs to be cut off completely.

    I applaud you for not fighting back but again, you should not HAVE to be concerned about “should I lash back or be the bigger man and use self-control. A relationship should be based on mutual sharing, working jobs, eating together, sleeping together…not dodging hurtful words, guilt trips, and shoes flying at your head or whatever.

    SHE SENDS ME LOVE SONGS…they mean NOTHING if she isn’t LIVING THEM! Anyone can copy-paste and mail. It takes a special person to truly LOVE in ACTIONS.

    DON’T KNOW HOW TO DO IT WITHOUT HER DRINKING MORE…NOT YOUR JOB, man. You cannot PROTECT HER FROM CONSEQUENCES. That is truly Codependent behavior and very unhealthy. Not a good way of thinking nor something to base your choice on.

    You said you love her very much. THEN LET HER GO. LET HER REAP HER CONSEQUENCES AND FACE THEM HERSELF. YOU can’t ‘undrink” for her and you can’t “un-addict” her either. It’s not your job. You did your job. You supported her and tried what you could to help. Now, she needs to FALL in order to realize she needs to get up again. If you keep picking her up again, she will never learn to WALK on her own nor will she realize she needs to do so.

    Find a therapist that deals with addictive relationships, possibly Borderline Personality Disorders, Substance Abuse, Codependency. See a doctor to make sure you are ok physically, pray and FIND YOURSELF AGAIN. Once you heal and have moved on, then start dating again or seeking a mate, but this one, you must see the signs, take the leap and let her go to deal with things she needs to WITHOUT YOU AS HER CRUTCH, SCAPEGOAT and PUNCHING BAG.

    You are better than this!

  • Paula g

    Hi Tyron,
    Maybe you can put it this way. Tell her you love her, and tell her you can’t go where she is going and you don’t want to go there and you don’t need to go there and if she does then you can’t stop it and you can’t help her. Give her something to work toward. Tell her the only way you can be with her is if she gets help and stops drinking and that that is the only way you could be with her. At least it gives her a part in the decision. Good luck.

  • Denise

    Hi Tyron,
    You should read Laurabeth’s letter over and over until it sinks in. I have been married to an alcoholic for 37 yrs. He was blaming me for all kinds of CRAP the other day out of the blue after we were cutting wood and I told him to very simply not talk to me anymore and I meant it.And I had a chainsaw in my hand- LOL! Numb? No. Just have had enough. I am retired and love to work around the house. Always something to do. He is still working- thank God. My first thoughts when I read your letter was dump her. You are not married to her or her problems. They never change. They lie. They talk sweet. They lie. They act like they’re interested. They lie. They hide the booze and think you don’t know. I call our garage the ” liquor locker”. Our son came home for X-mas last year. Where was his alcoholic dad at 4 or 5 a.m. When it was 20 below? In the liquor locker ! Oh, and taking the dogs out! HA!My son is an acute care nurse practitioner. We talked. My son shook his head and said very matter-of-factly, he’s going to die quick if he keeps this up. I shrugged and said I know. So, enough about that. Read that letter. Please. We are having some nasty storms here in the Midwest. Reminds me of my life. Stormy. Sunny. And on and on. One day it will end . Sunny. Take care. Always , Denise

  • Rick

    Tyron,
    I was exactly where you are now. But I married her. Because we were great . Sometimes. Fast forward 20 years and 2 children. She finally just about kills herself drinking. Decides it’s all my fault and leaves for a very old college boyfriend. Says I’m the problem. Max’s all the credit cards. I am only a shadow of the man I used to be. All the years of trying to sort thru what was real and which one of her was the real one. It will most likely end. And it will hurt. Is it now or later with children. I’m relearning who I am. I’ve met a lady who is not an alcoholic and has the ability to love me. It is night and day. I will always love my ex, but I can’t be her husband any more. I’ve not realized that I never had a “partner” life is not easy and we need a partner, someone capable of helping us when times are tough. I now have that. I Ve been in Al-anon for 7 years…Guys group.. and it has opened my eyes. It will hurt to break it off but you get one shot at life. I have my best 20 years..27 to 47 …To making a relationship work. She told me when she left she didn’t really live me and never had. I don’t believe it entirely, but if both 2 people can’t give and love each other, one person doing all the loving doesn’t equal love. A man came to the Al-anon meeting the other day, he was 83 years old and he said, ” my wife is drinking again”….Be wise

  • Tyron do yourself a favor and leave now you see the signs I been with my alcoholic boyfriend for 3years. He’s the most loving person I’ve ever met he loves my son more than his own father but when he drinks he’s calling me out my name saying all kinds of untruth it’s at the I stop drinking thinking if I don’t drink he won’t drink I can’t go to family functions cause he acts a fool and embrasses me and his self and when I asked him to stop he does it for maybe 4days before he gets mad and blame me for his drinking I been praying and I’m ready to go I hate to leave my home but if he won’t leave I will your peace of mind is more important than hers

  • LJ

    Tyron,
    Every story in every response above is true! I have been together with my husband for 17 years. He has been sober for 25 years. He grew up with alcoholic parents. I did not know him when he was a drinker, however, I am very familiar with the patterns of alcoholics. The bottle may go away but the verbal abuse, blame game, manipulation, and co-dependency does not. The behavior that helps alcoholics survive the bottle helps them survive sobriety. The love notes and small loving gestures stopped, which doesn’t mean my husband is not a loving and caring person. He is a very loving and caring person but his survival techniques win out every time and there is a nasty, angry blowup. My kids that he adores are not spared from this extreme behavior – loving one minute and raging the next. My advice is to realize you are making a choice! I encourage you to make the choice with full conscience awareness and understanding – because to stay in the relationship, you will be making that same choice daily and it is much harder to walk away when children are involved. There are many circumstances and reasons I stay in the relationship that I will not explain here, however, I choose to stay and I can walk away at any time. I have had to overcome my own emotional/mental/physical “demons” to be in this position. I raise my children with this awareness – identifying inappropriate behavior, whether it is from their father or them mimicking their father’s behavior. In that sense, WE (me and my children) make the choice daily to overcome the situation. I hope this helps you better understand the choice you are making to walk away from the relationship. Peace and Love.

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