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Can a marriage survive the alcoholism


Addiction & Recovery Recognizing, conquering, and coping with addictions, substance abuse & dependence.

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Old 12th February 2018, 2:41 AM   #1
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Can a marriage survive the alcoholism

Hi
My H has been an alcoholic since I met him. But Iím not sure if youíd call a teenage binge drinker an alcoholic. We drank together when we were young. We partied like many of our 20yr old counterparts. And i figured it would eventually fade out. I grew up in an alcoholic home so drinking wasnít necessarily out of the standard norm. We had 2 children in our late 20s and for me that was the end of partying. I drank socially. Many times to hang out with him. But I had different aspirations for us. I went to school got my degree and for the most part he and I are a successful couple as two professionals living in suburbia 2 kids 1 dog and 1 cat. But the drinking for him never decreased. Rather it has been daily for at least a decade and has increased. There is a marked change in him. He is a functioning alcoholic. Is successful at work. But his drinking has changed his mood.
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Old 12th February 2018, 2:54 AM   #2
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I hit submit in error.

Through the years the drinking has began to bother me more and more. Especially that my children are exposed to his daily drinking and sometimes drunken outbursts.

He refuses to get help. He doesnít want it. He doesnít think life is Liveable without it. After asking him to stop or get help and after him refusing, I detached emotionally. This happened through several years of him getting drunk, breaking windshields, calling me names, fighting at family gatherings, passing out at parties. The list goes on. It got hard to watch. And it never got better like I thought it would. I was hopeful.

I made a mistake. I had an affair. Iím in counseling to figure out why I did it. But Iím still married. He doesnít know about the affair. But he refuses counseling. And he has been drinking straight at least 3 days without eating and fighting with me about my career my parenting. And then he begs me to stay. Tells me heíll die if I leave him.

I donít want to leave him. I donít want to break up my family. But I kind of did by having an affair. I feel guilty about it.

But will a marriage work through the alcoholism
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Old 12th February 2018, 2:56 AM   #3
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There are too many negatives here.

His alcoholism. My affair.
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Old 12th February 2018, 2:52 PM   #4
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Don't try and blame your affair on his drinking problem this was your CHOICE remember that..

Your mistake was not making it clear to him that his drinking habit needed to stop.maybe you havent communicated that CLEARLY.

You said you don't want to break up your family right..so why don't you sit him down and have a SERIOUS talk with him just like you typed here..

These are serious problems and both of you need to commit to it seriously or else this is going to fall like house of cards..
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Old 12th February 2018, 6:30 PM   #5
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Don't try and blame your affair on his drinking problem this was your CHOICE remember that..

Your mistake was not making it clear to him that his drinking habit needed to stop.maybe you havent communicated that CLEARLY.
Iím not blaming my affair on his drinking. I take full responsibility. Was it right? No. I am working through counseling to figure out why I made that choice.

I didnít communicate clearly to him that his drinking habit needs to stop. I thought Iíd had all these years by saying to him he needs help or my offering to find AA for him or buying him books. But what Iíve learned in counseling is that I never came right out and told him. And at times Iíve enabled him. So I have now told him just as my counselor has advised. But he doesnít want to stop or get help. I should probably start alanon alongside individual counseling. But he refuses both. Can it work if only one is working towards improving tnis situation? And I am by no means making myself the good guy here. I also have issues obviously.
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Old 12th February 2018, 6:40 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by grass-hopper View Post
Iím not blaming my affair on his drinking. I take full responsibility. Was it right? No. I am working through counseling to figure out why I made that choice.

I didnít communicate clearly to him that his drinking habit needs to stop. I thought Iíd had all these years by saying to him he needs help or my offering to find AA for him or buying him books. But what Iíve learned in counseling is that I never came right out and told him. And at times Iíve enabled him. So I have now told him just as my counselor has advised. But he doesnít want to stop or get help. I should probably start alanon alongside individual counseling. But he refuses both. Can it work if only one is working towards improving tnis situation? And I am by no means making myself the good guy here. I also have issues obviously.
No, because nothing will change.

You cheated and that's awful, but in my opinion, it's not a "worse" transgression than that he is doing. They are both a betrayal to your vows. He's choosing the bottle over you. He's being more faithful to the bottle.

Your kids need to be the priority here. Are they happy?
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Old 13th February 2018, 2:30 AM   #7
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No, because nothing will change.

You cheated and that's awful, but in my opinion, it's not a "worse" transgression than that he is doing. They are both a betrayal to your vows. He's choosing the bottle over you. He's being more faithful to the bottle.

Your kids need to be the priority here. Are they happy?
We try and manage a good home life for them. As best we can. I canít imagine turning their life upside down.

But weíve both made some bad decisions that will likely affect them. Kids are not blind. Iím sure they hear things and see things.
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Old 13th February 2018, 2:44 AM   #8
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The decision to continue the toxic marriage knowing it won't change - or leave is your decision to make.

Personally, it's a decision he makes every time he chooses to drink.

When you work with a counselor you need to figure out where your boundary is and if things are unacceptable to you.

The kids... it's not a good example they see for any father. His behavior is hurting them more than anything...and you are showing them that even though things are completely unacceptable you stay. Expect them to also marry an alcoholic and stay - that's the example they know and understand as "normal". Even though it is not normal - they have learned it to be their normal.

If you don't like it you should divorce. His violence is unacceptable. He knows you shouldn't stay - and you likely cheated because he's really not there...he's with his love (the bottle). So you are truly alone in the marriage even though you're married. He couldn't possibly be an emotional support to you and that makes anyone feel alone.

Ten years sober here - I've sponsored more than 150 people. The person who quits only makes it if they REALLY REALLY want to...and even then it's really hard work.

Sometimes there's damage that's been done that just can't be fixed.

You deserve for your home to be peaceful for you and for your kids... that should be a huge priority!

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Old 13th February 2018, 3:49 AM   #9
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My ex-hubby is an alcoholic and was very abusive towards me and our children. The thing that finally convinced me that the marriage was forever over was the fact that 1) He could possibly seriously injure one of our kids and 2) I could be held responsible for failing to protect them.


Save yourself and your children, leave. You never know it may shock him into trying to give up the booze. (This didn't happen with my ex BTW, he's still a raging drunk 11years later.)
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Old 24th February 2018, 1:17 PM   #10
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Alcoholism is also a progressive whatever(disease,illness,habit,ect..) It doesn't get fixed on its own and you can't fix it for him.
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Old 24th February 2018, 8:14 PM   #11
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oi
i made the very painful decision to divorce my husband a few mos ago. he was a stoner and an alcoholic. among many other issues in our marriage....

i recommend you pick up a few books
1. f*ck feelings, just read the part on addiction
2. codependent no more
3. beyond codependency

also,
go to an AA meeting and an Al Anon meeting. i did both b'c i wanted to meet people who were heavy drinkers and see what they were thinking about. it gave me a different perspective

in the end, you have free will. so does he. the real question is what are YOU going to do?
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Old 24th February 2018, 9:07 PM   #12
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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XwYASU-YVcw&t=15s

this explains addiction the best i have ever seen .....from a spiritual and a scientific perspective it is perfect in explaining what addiction really is....

im going to differ from what other posters have said about "just" leaving.....some people like yourself can stop drinking and some can't because it goes further and becomes part of them..they need it...the video explains this concept.....stand by your husband and when he isnt drunk or been drinking, explain to him you cant live like this anymore and that you want to support him in getting help and going to either aa meetings and counselling or at least aa meetings to begin with.....you want to get help with him.....but he has to want to work at it...

my belief is when you marry someone you marry them with the thought in mind i am going to be here through all the successes and all the down falls and we are going to go through everything together....the highs and the lows....you don't abandon ship when the ship is in the trough....if your belief in the ship is strong...... you stay and know that the ship will keep going through the troughs and into the crests of the waves...the ship is your marriage, the waves are life......and the calm deep blue ocean on the other side of the all the storms and waves.....is eternity

the ship will only sail if you persevere sailing in it......and work together through the storms and troughs.....its no good having a ship that only lasts on crests.....your husband isn't sailing well or helping you as good as he could or should.....so take him back to basics and get some support for him but not only for him for you too....marriage counselling after aa ...he has to be willing to work as hard as you will...and it wont be easy.....but you know what can give you hope....knowing that every trough has a crest attached....and with kids in your ship...it isn even more important that you keep the ship afloat than toss yourselves out..with your kids......and try and keep yourself and them afloat long enough to heal and swim....

you may have to man the ship for a while....but you are capable and strong and you can do it....not just for you but your family as well....get the help you need to make it.....you wont regret it...if your husband isnt willing....then thats when you can give an ultimatum and tell him nah matey this is how its going to be....even if I have to drag you and believe me i will...we are doing it...or you are on your own until you get help yourself...(even if you have to bluff...bluff it)..stand strong on what needs to happen....dont sway.. seek professional counselling ..do everything you can ....to save the ship.....good ships that weather storms are few and far between ....to be in that ship...you have to face the troughs..and many of them to be classed as a a storm busting trough proof ship...i wish you well....deb........
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Last edited by todreaminblue; 24th February 2018 at 9:11 PM..
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Old 25th February 2018, 8:33 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by grass-hopper View Post
There are too many negatives here.

His alcoholism. My affair.
I think you should disclose the affair. Not only is it the right thing to do, but it would help him understand more clearly what's at stake. And I'd guess working through the issues involved would clarify both the problems in your marriage and the options to solve them.

Unless you've become accustomed to the advantage his apparent addiction coupled with your hidden infidelity gives you ???

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Old 10th March 2018, 8:14 PM   #14
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Hi, parts of your post could have been me 10 years ago. I know how hard this is.

My children's dad was very much like your husband- the progression from being a heavy drinker to an alcoholic.

It took a turn for the worst with his health for him to admit he was an alcoholic and needed help. We had all been through hell, I had hope that life would get better.

For us, once the 'diagnosis' was made our lives went into a downward spiral.

Do not under estimate the power of the bottle and addiction, it's an ugly, strong monster.

We went to meetings where I would sit and cry both at the sad stories of people's addiction and the carnage it brought and with sheer emotion at their sober stories. You want to talk to a wise person? Go to an AA meeting and talk to someone with a good chunk of sobriety under their belt.
The meetings for my ex reassured him - not that he could get better but that he wasn't as bad as those people who had just spoken, it gave him enough to tell himself he wasn't an alcoholic at all.

Then he tried to stop drinking...I spent 6 years finding hidden bottles, having him not come home (was usually at hospital after having a fit due to the drink) then starting at actually dread when he did cut down his drinking because that meant he would be alert enough to sit and tell me over and over again all of my faults, saying I was a bad mum, the house wasn't tidy enough etc

I had to put plastic sheets on the floor so he wouldn't throw up on the floor when he took his first gulp on a morning. It was hell. We tried everything.

The last straw came for me when he promised to be sober for the children on Christmas Day, he didn't take a drink but that resulted in him throwing up all over the children's presents and having visual and auditory hallucinations and DTs, so we spent the day watching him swatting imaginary spiders and getting angry with us that we wouldn't stroke the 'gentle fox' that was walking around our living room. He needed medical help but refused it. So I refused to put our kids through it anymore and left soon after new year.

I've rambled on enough but my main point was, I couldn't help him. He loved me and definitely loved the kids sooo much but the pull of the bottle was stronger.

Once we split I had to make the decision to let the kids see him whenever he was sober enough. He knew he could see them at any point providing he was sober. I STILL arranged my life around him so he could still be a father.

He died of a drink related illness a year later aged 40.

PLEASE think of yourself and the children. No child would benefit from being around that kind of behaviour. My kids had a year of seeing their Dad only when he was sober, in death he is still their hero even though they remember the bad times.

You and the children are only enough to stop him from drinking WHEN HE IS READY and until he is, he can drink himself into oblivion and have the relief of the blackouts. It's the sober ones who suffer the whole time.

For all the people who have got sober- I can not express the amount of respect I have for you. I condensed my post for the sake of everyone here but I truly have never seen anyone battle harder than my ex, the tears, the self loathing and guilt. In the end the addiction won. I truly do admire you and congratulate you on your sobriety and strength.
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Old 10th March 2018, 8:52 PM   #15
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Only one thing

Hey Grass=hopper.

There is only one thing you both can do.

Wake him up, shock him awake. Be honnest , Tell him what is been gong on under his nose.

Read OWL.

I've been there.

Hang in there ,you here !!

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