Coping With Lying Alcoholics-Why they lie so much

How can you tell when an alcoholic is lying? There lips are moving. Coping (dealing) with the lying nature of the problem drinker is better done through accepting the fact that lies are a way of life for the substance abuser. They really have a problem with being truthful about anything.

Why do they lie so much? Let’s face it, they are living in a world of denial and if we get honest enough with ourselves, we will realize that we are living in denial as well. It’s really not important to understand why they do this, just accept the fact and leave them alone when they do it.




The sooner you can accept that lying is a part of the alcoholic’s lifestyle the better you will be able to cope. Dealing with someone who is not telling the truth is frustrating because it causes us to want to argue with them about not telling the truth.

Just learn how to zip your lip.

When we stop confronting them then there will be a lot less finger pointing going on. There is great freedom to be enjoyed once we stop judging an alcoholic.

When we learn that we do not have to try and prove to them that we know they are telling us a lie, then our frustration level will go down. This will help us to also stop blaming an alcoholic for much of our stress.

What is the point of confronting an alcoholic who is lying anyway? You know they are just going to deny the truth and stand up for the false reality that they perceive to be truth. Alcoholic liars come in every shape from a teenage son, daughter, spouse, mom, dad, grandmother or grandfather.

The reason they lie so much is because alcoholics are filled with shame. Have you ever known someone who when they were a child said they wanted to be an alcoholic when the grow up? Of course not, no one sets a goal to be addicted to some type of drug or substance. The alcoholic thinks and feels as though “they” are a mistake. For that reason they will lie about countless matters.

Unfortunately, lying is a comfortable way of life for the alcoholic. The best way of coping (or, dealing) with this problem is to just accept the truth and let them tell their lies without you pretending to be the private investigator who knows what really happened.

Trust me… When you start letting go of all the things they are doing, you will start losing your temper with an alcoholic less.

Just let them live their dysfunctional life and you enjoy yours without the additional fight for the day.
Author: JC Edited by: Odum On

Alcohol Addiction Family

How to Stop Arguing With an Alcoholic

476 comments to Coping With Lying Alcoholics-Why they lie so much

  • Teresa

    I have a loved one who is an alcoholic with a mental illness. He has gone through detox numerous times and put on an outpatient rehab after detox. This is something he never follows through with and lands back in detox several months later. He needs an residential inpatient treatment but it is impossible to find one that he or any of us can afford. Because he is considered disabled due to his mental illness, he is on disability with Medicare and the Humania supplemental insurance. We have tried so hard to find a treatment center that would take his insurance and can’t find anything. Everything we have found is anywhere from 11,000-32,000 for 30 days. Since he has nothing and we don’t have that kind of money, what does one do? He isn’t even 30 years old yet and if he keeps on without treatment, I fear he will die very soon. Does anyone know any in patient treatment centers for the non rich?

  • Debbie

    Do you have medicaide or ssi. Thru social
    Security that might help?

  • Teresa

    Debbie,
    He has Had Medicare since he went on disability. His state changed it from Medicaid to Medicare when the disability kicked in.

  • Debbie

    They want help. They will in Texas , that’s a shame!!!

  • JC

    Teresa, what about the Salvation Army? In our area we have two locations where the recovery programs are thriving…

    You know, AA has a reading called “How It Works.” Within this reading it states: “Those who do not recover are people who cannot or will not completely give themselves to this simple program, usually men and women who are constitutionally incapable of being honest with themselves. There are such unfortunates. They are not at fault; they seem to have been born that way. They are naturally incapable of grasping and developing a manner of living which demands rigorous honesty. Their chances are less than average. There are those, too, who suffer from grave emotional and mental disorders, but many of them do recover if they have the capacity to be honest.”

  • Sandy

    WOW just read many of the recent comments and feel totally overwhelmed about how so many of us are in the exact same place in our life . . my husband has stopped drinking, but . . he still has the old alcoholic behaviors – the only 2 things missing are the booze and the violence . . but he’s still a jerk, very mean, selfish, uncaring, incensitive . . and I don’t know if it’s going to get better . . xmas was just ok, it was quiet but there was no warm and fuzzies or enjoyment . . dull . . my AH hasn’t a clue how to relax and have a good time, he’s so uptight and angry at the world and I find myself wondering what 2013 will bring me . . I really don’t want to stay married to him but financially right now I’m stuck . . literally . . and I hate that feeling . . my heart goes out to all of you that are on this ugly roller coaster ride called alcoholism and unfortunately, even if they stop drinking it doesn’t always solve the problem . . I care for my husband . . but do I love him? Your guess is as good as mine . . I’m sure God will lead us all where we need to go if we just let him . . good luck to you all, you will be in my prayers . .

  • Sarah

    Hi every one and Happy New Year. I fell off the wagon! I got in touch with my x in October and I was back in the cycle of addiction. That is my addiction to him! They say that it is a disease and I think its contageous! I have started acting like my addicted boyfriend almost like my brain has started to work the same way as his. I’m getting mood swings, anxiety, losing touch with reality and secretive about my feelings. When he takes coke he disappears by that I mean the real him gets lost. When I have contact with him I feel that I disappear too. I become like an empty person, no self esteem, no interest in anything else but him and seeing him. So I am really mirroring him exactly like being addicted but with out the coke! Scary eh?
    I sent him some really nasty messages when he let me down again. 7 years of frustration all came out and I couldn’t stop. I had totally lost control and turned into a fish wife! I was really worried about my sanity. The thing is he didn’t really let me down. He was just leading the life of an addict. I expected something different. So just like he takes coke expecting to get great feelings and a pick me up, I do the same by contacting him. I get upset and feel let down when he is initially enthusiastic about seeing me only for the “I’m busy doing this and that…how about early next week?…oh might have to be thu/ fri?…oh working this week might have to be next week…oh not this weekend doing the family thing with my brother…Mon? Lets meet monday.” Cut to Monday evening. Me” do you still what to meet for dinner” Him ” Not sure. I dont know. What do you think? Do you think its a good idea?” Crazy making! I hope any one caught up in the madness doesn’t lose hope. I’m already starting to feel better through going back to no contact. Wish I hadn’t weakened. Each time I do I seem to go more crazy and forget more and more what a normal relationship feels like. I’m thinking of going to a codependency group as I dont think there really is a relationship between us. Its now just me acting on my addiction to him and him with his coke. All the best for 2013. I’m joing the Codependents Liberation Army. Freedom for all of us in 2013

  • Deb

    My mother made a comment that she believes the only way they can feel love is ‘to feel persecuted’ or to feel ‘wronged’ or to feel as though they are ‘the victim.’ If they fall into one of these categories they can self love or accept love. I wrote in one message that I felt my alcoholic lacks ‘human kindness.’ And, I fully believe this, this character trait is gone. He can feign compassion, can pretend to care, he puts on a very good act. But its only an act. Kindness is a quality that is within a human being which comes from the ability to have empathy, the ability to look at another person and forget yourself for a moment and to reach out and to put judgement behind you. I notice my alcoholic judges nearly everything and really lacks the Genuine quality of human kindness. I feel if he still possessed this, he could even apply kindness to himself. What a strange life to live without certain human qualities. Its different.

  • Lane

    I agree, strength in God will help you heal and fill the empty space And I pray for the alcoholics to give them strength to fight their disease. They turn into a different person, in my case, after 3.5 years, a person I didn’t know emerged. I started chemo for six months. He started being mean, did not trust me, controlling, making up things that weren’t true, his imagination went crazy, obsessed, obsessive compulsive, bi-polar, I broke up with him. Then came the blaming, accusations, trips to de-tox, trips to rehab, maintenance drinking, causing much heartache. He almost died, IV’s, hospital, all the while blaming me for breaking up with him. Blaming me that I led him on, used him, premeditated my departure, if I hadn’t gone through chemo everything would have been ok. Yea, except I would be dead. Well, I made it through chemo and I treasure every minute of life, but life is too short to be with someone that treats me that way. I always believed that if you close one door, many will open for you. Be strong, take care of yourself, you have only one life and it is a short one, it goes by so fast.

  • Debbie

    Good for you girl on the chemo, you come first
    I was really caring for this guy saw each other
    For 6 mo but he drinks all the time. Just used me for
    Money booze cigarets and sex. Would have me
    Leave early in the am so he could get drinker
    And call me when he was sick, stupid me went
    Over made plains for New Year’s Eve w him
    And he dumped me for his x, hello I guess I believed
    All his stupid lies, u feel so stupid to have believed
    Him, you can’t be just friends and sleep with
    Each other draws a red flag up. I know he will
    Call agn but I’m hurt and done!!!!!! They all use
    You and lie lie lie!!!!!

  • Janeine

    so happy i found this page !!!

  • Laura

    I am so glad that I found this page, It has brought comfort knowing I am not the only one going through this. My boyfriend of 7 months is a full blown alcoholic. I did not know that magnitude of his addiction until recently. He has been jailed for the past 5 days and this has allowed me to do research on addiction. The lies and deception is far from what I ever imagined. I am going to attend alanon this week for support. He is being released next week and I know I have to totally detach myself from him. I love him so much, but also know that he has not ever truly loved me.

  • JC

    Laura, thanks for posting. That’s a great idea, go to Al-anon. Sounds like you are getting an awareness of the personality of the alcoholic already. He may love you, but most addicts are in love with the substance they are addicted to more than they love us.

    I encourage you to sift through our website. Take time to click on the various text links scatter throughout the pages. There’s a wealth of information to learn from here. Take time to read the comments from our readers as well.

    Feel free to post any questions you may have. Our readers are good at responding.

  • JC, Thanks for responding. I have been sifting through numerous websites for the last day or so. I am learning alot and going to continue to look for support on the net. In 7 days he will be released from jail. I am his only contact person, and am praying for strength not to fall back into all of his lies and deception.

  • Well just got a call from him from county jail. I accepted the call because I do really miss him. After a few minutes on the phone, all of his lies and manipulations started. I remained strong and pointed out several other lies he has said to me and he denied all of them. This is how an alcoholic thinks. They lie to themselves. I pray for the strength to detach before or when he gets released.

  • Aaron

    Hey everyone, I have read most of the short stories here and I am sorry all of you are going through the same thing I am. My story is long and full of heartache. My, now wife started drinking really heavy when her grandmother became sick with terminal cancer. I started to find her drinking in the morning on her days off and would confront her about it. She would say it is her day off and she is just having a drink.

    I would catch her drinking from a wine bottle right at the fridge and then she started to hide it from me. Don’t get me wrong drinking was something that we both did a lot of. I was just able to put it down when I wanted. About a month after her grandma passed she was in a car accident and was taken to jail for DWI. While she was in jail that night I took all the alcohol that I could find out of the house and that is when it started to get bad. I bailed her out of jail and she swore she would change. Her change never happened. We were married on Oct of 2011 and because of all of the legal fees and court fees we were forced to move in with her mother after the wedding.

    The drinking got worse and worse from there and I was forced to separate from her for 4 months. I thought that was it, the person I loved so much was now gone. I was hurt confused and separated from the person I have loved and been with for 6 years. I went back to her because I could not bear being away from her anymore. She went through rehab and started to work the program of AA and that was the determining factor of my return. She was good for the first month and then started drinking again. At work she was almost fired because she was drunk at work and still lied about it. I will catch her now red handed and she still denies it and lies about it.

    I don’t know what my breaking point is and I am stuck in this downward spiral of her addiction. I feel like I am losing my mind because I always investigate her and analyze the things she is doing. I catch her lying a lot but it only makes me worse. I have grown to be hateful and confrontational. I do not enjoy going home, the place that should be a sanctuary.

    I am lost and need help in dealing with this before I start making excuses and trying to find other ways to get through the day and end up the same way she is right now. If anyone has any advices for me please help! I am losing it fast. And I would like to thank you all for sharing your stories and showing me that I am not alone in this.

  • JC

    AAron, the fastest relief I can offer you is to get the Secrets To Dealing With Alcoholics Lessons(CLICK HERE NOW and get the current special). I would also recommend that you get involved in Al-non ASAP. Also take time to sift through our website.

  • Aaron

    JC,

    Thanks so much for replying so fast. I will be attending an Al Anon meeting this weekend there are two I may go to but at least one for sure. I will look into the audio books. I was skeptical of her sobriety in the past few days because she was acting funny and by that i mean not herself, I think you understand what I mean by that. I had an incident today before I came into work where I found her little bottle of Smirnoff, the little individual shot bottle, laying in the yard next to her car. It must have fell out of her pocket or purse so I confronted her about it and she lied that she ever saw it. I know the truth because I do not buy them. Since this all started I stopped drinking to support her, but I think we all do that if we truely want to see our loved ones succeed in beating alcoholism. That is what has pushed me to your site today so I will be looking over the things your site has. Thanks again for everything!

  • maureen

    I have been trying to detatch for 6 months now…i lived with my alcholic for 6 years… i never thought he was lying to me…but now i know he lied about everything…i knew he was an alcholic on our first date..he told me, so its my own fault i know that .He drank a 60 pounder of vodka with water in a day … and he does ….still.He never abused me phycilly but the mental abuse was daily ,he had a succesful business which i ended up running and we were making over a million dollars a year. he is east indian and i changed my lifestyle to his customs… i learned how to cook indian foods every night and changed to his customs.he would quit drinking cold turkey once a year for about 4 months …the dt`s were horrible but i stood beside him with no medical help holding him and helping him through it all. Only for him to start drinking again every new years eve…..i cant even begin to tell you everything i went through… and what i did for him and how i enabled him on a daily basis.I need to write a book for that ..long story short.. one day i had enough…found out he was lying to his family , friends, and me of course.. i found reciepts from hotel rooms i was not in with him, his friends thought he worked somewhere he didnt and the tax men were after him for tax evasion ! he told me his account was looking after everything ..a lie… i was blamed for everything always, from his pants ripping to his grey hair to his lack of work now…anyways, i love this site and i see how alcholics are all the same in many ways.. i attended alanon , he knew that, and the day he left the one thing he left on the coffee table was the pamplhlet from a meeting saying “so you love an alcholic ” so why do i still love him and worry about him ??? in time i wont ? I think i always will …..xo

  • Debbi

    My heart goes out to all of you.

    I was where you were at but mine drank less but more abusive. I am now divorced and you would think it would be better but it’s not. I stayed too long in the relationship and so now I am suffering with severe depression trying desperately to make sense out of something that will never make sense and taking on the guilt.

    Don’t end up like me–make plans as soon as possible to end any relationship that is toxic to you or at the very least keep your distance and your sanity or you will end of like me alone–he caused me to lose all my family and friends so now I am totally alone and thinking that maybe at least the abuse was some attention in my life because now I have no one.

  • Karens

    Debbie, there is a reason for every season. Take this
    precious alone time to read,self help books are good.
    You will not have to worry about him criticizing your
    wanting to help your self. You were really alone when you
    were with him and his friends. Your head was right and
    theirs confused. Remember that alcoholics can only think
    of where they can find the drink. It is their priority
    not yours. Feeling down today should not be ignored.
    Look at your life. Take a walk, look at your life not his
    and rebuild you for your future. Friends come and friends go.
    Church is a good place to meet new people.
    Good luck, you will be okay.

  • JM

    Hi Debbie, my heart goes to you. Time will heal your wound. Give yourself more time. I heard that it needs a month for every year spent on the relationship you were in. The longer the relationship you stayed, the more time you need to recover yourself.
    Join an Al-anon meeting, get support there, or read self-help articles like Karens says. Take easy on yourself. One day at a time. Remember you are now a step forward to a normal life you deserve.

  • Smeared Wife

    Re: Lying Alcoholics.

    My AH and I do not live near his family . I haven’t seen or spoke to any of his relatives in over 6 years. Prior to that, my interactions with them have been very minimal and cordial.

    Since they have learned that my AH is an alcoholic (from him), they have been told outrageous lies about me. Unfortunately, because they don’t really know me, they take his words as “gospel truth”. Therefore they have become unknowing “enablers” by offering him unending sympathies. This, of course, lets them believe that the only reason he’s an alcoholic is because he has a horrible wife. This is just causing more and more problems. He’s still drinking (because he’s still with his horrible wife), and they’re insisting that he divorce me because “i’m the cause of his problems”!!!

    I don’t know what to do. Our adult children are appalled by all of this because they know first hand how much I do for my H, how nice I am to him, and how mean he is to me.

  • Sage

    An old alcoholic lover tried to connect with me on Facebook recently. We haven’t had a relationship in 15 years. I got healthy and moved on. I set boundaries, told her she I thought she was a smart, creative person (she is), but that she had lied to me, mistreated me and abused me in the past, that I did not see any signs she respected me and that I did not consider her a safe person to be involved with. I said I did not want to connect with her or have a relationship of any kind so, have a good life and goodbye. That brought an abusive email accusing me of being insane, paranoid, toxic etc. etc. and all the reasons why I was why she drank. She’s still drinking. That only reaffirmed my impressions and my boundaries. She wrote back apologizing for “going off” and then said she was not a liar. I didn’t argue, remained calm, said I forgave her and had moved on, but I no longer wanted her in my life anymore. She wrote back with some snippy digs, but I didn’t take the bait, didn’t argue, just responded neutrally and positively and then ignored everything afterward. So why am I so angry and hating all alcoholics and wishing she’d run her car up a tree? She had 2 DUIs before I met her. I didn’t know about those until her second DUI when I was with her. I left after that. Is this something everyone feels? I hadn’t thought about it until she tried to reconnect. I’m easily able to stay away and ignore her, but wondering where all the anger is coming from. Both my parents, my brother and all my relatives are alcoholic. I never drank because I never wanted to become one. Anyone else experience this?

  • Debbi

    Sage-First off, congratulate yourself: your set boundaries and saw this person was still the same and stuck your ground. Secondly, my ex-AH is still able to push my buttons and I get angry every time just like you but am finding that I am able to get my “peace & serenity” back quicker than before. Mine doesn’t even contact me–what sets me off now is all the “stuff” that is coming out into the light about the nasty dirty tricks he did to me over 15 years & continuing even after the divorce. I found these things out much later & boy the anger comes right back so I know exactly about the anger you talk about in your post. We stay neutral but they hurt us by pushing those buttons they know get to us. Every time it happens to me, I crawl a little deeper into myself and establish more boundaries to keep distance. It helps but then I feel like My God this jerk is still controlling my life and we’re not even together anymore. I know there’s a solution for this & I hope we both find it.

  • Enough

    I’ve got one sentence run before its too late if they don’t have will power it does not change I wasted 9 yrs and to show what heartache abuse losing money please put urself first and you deserve more

  • Debbie

    Well I’m back in the situation with the drunk,
    He has a girlfriend off and on situation, he call
    Me yesterday and asked me to come over and
    I did I wanted to see him! He wasn’t very drunk
    I was surprised but was drinking a beer, and of
    Course we slept together . Does this make me
    A whore because I slept with him ? He said he
    Is back and forth with this girl but he thinks
    Abt me to and misses seeing me? Prob misses
    The booty call!!!! You can’t believe him but I really
    Hate doing the other girl that way but I just like
    His company and sex, I am not married and
    He is not married but goes back and forth
    The other girl doesn’t care for sex that much,
    He says he loves her but can’t stay with her
    That long they fight!!! Ya think he is lying or
    Am I just want to believe him, am I a whore
    For seeing him? Don’t love him we just have
    Fun!!!!

  • Lisa

    I have been in a relationship with a man for 2/1/2 years. He was in my town doing construction work when I met him. We live 4 hours apart. He has done jail time for DWI, so there were multiples. I helped him get his license back after not having it for 10 years. He went back home and we maintained we would be exclusive. I am the phone account owner so I can see all calls. He was drunk the first night he went home and the lies began. He went to a porn store the first day he was home. On his 4th day home, I took a train, he picked me up an hour late and was drunk. He has cheated on me and only told the truth when I got her on the phone and we confronted him. The lies are endless. He was drinking last weekend and a woman that I know had called him. I confronted him, he lied. I called her and she blindlessly said they saw each other and she hung up. I confronted him, he said nothing happened but knew I would think something did, so he was protecting me. I told him to never contact me again. He cries like a baby, and tells me how he loves me. I feel myself crumbling and wanting to call. It has been 4 days. My friends and son don’t like him because of all he has done, and I’m sure I don’t know it all. I need help, he will be back in town in 2 weeks for about 6 months. I don’t know how to deal with any of it. I don’t know if I should call or stay far away.

  • Bruce

    Lisa you should stop it NOW! The lies and lame excuses will only get worse. I would get a STD test if I were you. Better safe then sorry. I learned the hard way about having a alcoholic in my life. Try to find a good support group. You might have to try several groups. One size does not fit all when it comes to support groups. Keep a clear head and never argue with him. It won’t help. Hang in there. We are here for you.

  • Sandy

    Well all I can say, is my husband is now sober . . and he still lies . . it doesn’t seem to stop; he will say one thing one minute and something else the next . . and he’s got so much brain damange from 30 years of drinking he can’t even remember the lies anymore . . his memory is awful too . . you’d swear he’s 95 years old . . it’s extremely hard to communicate and trust someone like that; I have to take certain things he says with a grain of salt as my Mom would say; I hate living this way . . I care about him, and he has quit drinking . . but it’s still a nightmare plain and simple . .

  • Thank you. I have an appointment with a counselor tomorrow, I figure it’s a good place to start. I have found out where there are alanon groups in my area. What other groups might I look into? I also must have some issues or I wouldn’t be here or looking at telephone records. I need to get away from the shared phone as well, can I possibly cut it all off at once? What does a STD test consist of? UGH, unreal

  • Bill

    Lisa, your this relationship is over with your friend is not healthy. If it were me, I’d tell him you are taking him off the phone account. I’d also cut all other ties from him as well. There’s nothing good for you here. He will continue to lie and cheat on you. Move on with your life and get rid of this chaos before you get hurt even more.

    Even if you do decide to nix him, go to Al-anon for a while. It will help you close the horrid emotional wounds that are constantly aching and keeping you awake at night.

  • Bill

    Debbie, sounds like an STD (sexually transmitted disease) might be something to consider too.

  • Bruce

    Lisa & Debbie they draw blood for the STD test. Then you should have a follow up test a couple of months later. That’s what my Dr. had me do. I’m on medicare/Humana. They covered it. So get the tests. Hopefully you will be clean. Then that will be one less worry for you.

  • Elisabeth

    I’m finding the desire to confront my ex-AF with his lies hard to fight. We still live together at the moment for financial reasons, and he is sober most of the time because of his job, so I feel like I could talk to him….but I know the lying is second nature for him, sober or drunk. I really don’t think he knows how to be honest it makes me crazy. I’m actually pretty good about feeling detached and calm – even happy – most of the time, until I start to relive even recent conversations and think about the lies, and then I start to go a bit crazy. I also don’t think I’ll be able to fully move on until he moves out, but that probably won’t happen for a few months. And when that does happen, I feel sure I will really go through the grief that comes with the end of a 15 year relationship and it will be so much harder to get through the days. Everyone’s advice is logical and perfect…it just can be hard to put into effect sometimes. I’m not strong 100% of the time. I wonder how long it can take to stop caring about him totally, rather than coming up with activities and living my life so that I am not thinking about him. I don’t know if that made sense, but…how do I deal with those quiet moments? When I don’t have something to distract me?

  • Debbi

    Elisabeth:
    Yes Elisabeth it is those quiet moments that get to us, me too. With me it’s movies that play around & around in my head, recent & older fights and conversations & then I even try to force my brain to think way back & try to remember if it was like this in the beginning. I wish I had a solution to help keep your mind off it but nothing I have tried has worked for me except maybe work. Since I have so many back medical bills due I am working 3 jobs and as long as I’m busy at work that seems to ease it but anything even at work can trigger those feelings.

    I’d like to tell you that once you separate and put some physical distance between you it might help & in your case it just might but in mine it did not because right before he left I find out about another woman and maybe several just waiting in the wings and he’s on the phone with them where I heard him telling them he loved them & wonder what I did wrong or at least now why can’t I see him do the same things to one of them (not that I wish ill on them even if they knew he was married & one of them did know).

    None of us can be strong 100% of the time. This is a journey and it is okay to feel sadness and pain; for to stop those feelings would only slow your recovery so I tell myself when I feel it coming on I give in to it but tell myself only 5 minutes Deb and then move and do something. Sometimes it is just something simple like fold some clothes, run the vacuum or read. I think the harder I try to distract it the worse I make it so I give into it but put a time limit on it.

    I was given some good advice 1 year ago: I found out my ex had signed up with escorts and knew the nights he was going out with them & I sat in the house recovering from radiation treatments. My good friend said “make a game of it”. He said count the time (watch the clock) and log it in as to how long he is gone & the next time it happens watch the clock again & actually hope he beats the record. He did one night when he never came home so I moved on to another game & starting counting how many times he called me a XXX or a XXX. So instead of focusing on the nasty things he was saying outside my bedroom door I was only listening for certain words to count them. Sounds stupid but I was allowing myself to focus on it but in a different way. That helped me instead of telling myself not to focus on him. Kinda like if “you tell someone not to think about pink elephants then that’s all you think about” So think about it but in a different way–try to make a game out of it & put the focus of it actually back on his bad behaviour. This helped me a little while I was still living with him and sometimes I actually almost laughed out loud when he called me XXX four times in a row & beat his record–I almost starting cheering & fellt like saying to him “Wow You Beat Your Record”.

  • Elisabeth

    Debbie – I hate what you have had to go through and am inspired by your courage. Thank you for your understanding and for your advice about only giving in for a few minutes, as well as your suggestion for making some things into a game for myself. I think these ideas are solid and something I think I can do. I also appreciate that when I’m feeling weak, I can come onto this site and connect with people like you. I don’t think I can say thank you enough for all those times.

  • Debbi

    Elisabeth:
    I just hope it helps you. Not a permanent fix by any means for me but just helps get you through those “moments” when we get so tormented we just don’t know what to do.

    My saga continues: Ex has now forwarded my mail yet again & got my debit card to my checking account. 3 of my accounts have now had phone calls that I am deceased & now I’m strapped for cash–can’t access my checking account. Wednesday is my next surgery & now I may have to cancel it & put out more fires & I can’t pay my deductible at the hospital because all my accounts are on hold.

    Never thought an alcoholic could be so cunning or again what in holy name am I dealing with here? I so search for my answers to help me cope.

  • Elisabeth

    OMG, Debbi – this guy is not just an Alcoholic, he’s a Sociopath! Is there nobody around you who can help with this kind of craziness? It’s too much to have on your plate alone.

    And your advice does help, it does. I had a big conversation with my ex-AF just this morning and I’m reeling as I think back on it and catch all the lies. And yet he had the gall to tell me how much I hurt him when I called him a liar a few weeks ago. If not for your advice, I would be marching over to him right now and going over the list of lies. I’m thinking of putting together my own book instead and calling it The Big Book Of Lies. At least, getting it down on paper can be a bit cathartic.

    I am also fortunate because I have a very close relationship with all his siblings and they are very sympathetic towards me. They know who he really is and they are a family of either alcoholics or co-dependents, even though they don’t admit to all of it. It’s a sweet, loving family that sometimes finds it easier to keep their heads in the sand rather than deal with their inter-family issues.

  • Tamie

    So here goes I have been with my alcoholic Hubby for most of the last 13 years. We have a blended family of six children. My daughter from my first marriage 22, 3 step sons from his second marriage twins 22, and an 18 year old, and two sons together 10 and 5 years old. I consider all of them my own I couldn’t love my step sons anymore if I had given birth to them. He was sober when I met him, had no idea, by the time I did I was madly in love. He is a compulsive liar was my first clue, I kept catching him in them but God help me I felt sorry for him thought he was too ashamed to share the Truth of his past with me…he just didn’t trust me enough so he got pass number 1 lol. Well he has left me twice both times I was pregnant( miscarried one of the children) increased responsibility is one of his triggers. I took him back both times he knew exactly what to tell me and I cave. When he is sober it is incredibly good…or used to be. He went to prison after his last bad and worse binge lasted about a year while I was pregnant with our 5 year old…he hasn’t been the same since he is either drunk or a dry drunk. I hardly know him, I am now the enemy and he his so hyper critical of me I have become very insecure…after you hear it constantly so long you start believing it. My children the younger ones adore their dad so much and when he is good he is an amazing father…I am sure I wouldn’t have stayed so long other wise.
    Well he has been drinking a lot more lately again and wants a divorce because I am so impossible to live with( all my fault I am the monster). It hurts deeply after all I have done the commitment I have held to loyally to him the children our family. He lies is verbally abusive only helped support our family between binges cheated more times then I ever want to know. And now he is telling me I have to let him make his choice and do his thing and be quiet. It’s not about me or the kids so leave it alone…well the things he does does effects me and all the kids, but he cant or wont accept that.I am exhausted with all of it and scared of what my life looks like with and without him.

    He left the middle of the week last week for Florida and used our condo rental for spring break with the kids for him and his drinking buddy to go party, said he needed a vacation. Didn’t call to check in for 3 days…every bad thing running through my mind..knowing if he is not hurting his self he is doing God knows what…well when he called I figured out it was God knows what. I had enough said don’t come home. If he didn’t have this disease I wouldn’t tolerate this indifference and abuse of our family and relationship. I love him and will till the day I die, but I can’t allow him to keep hurting us. He is protesting saying I have no choice I have to let him do this and he is coming home. I told him we can either work this out as a family or he can walk away…but if he wants to walk away just do it and leave us alone and let us grieve…if he shows up and starts a scene I will call the police. I have freedom too I have rights too my choices I know effect so many others…my kids and my sanity are first…I am scared sh$#*less, horrified of the nightmare this will become, horrified this will be the stressor that puts him over the edge and he does finally hurt his self horrified this is more stress then I can handle horrified I fail my children in this some how horrified he wont fight for us horrified my life has been a lie and he never loved me in the first place…horrified I cant do this alone starting over from scratch at 45 with two small children. God help me.

  • Debbi

    Elisabeth: No unfortunately I have no one to help–no family in the area and the few friends I have are staying away so not to get in the middle of this mess–actually can’t blame them. I do believe you are right that there might be a tendency of a sociopath in there but his drinking less severe than the stories of others I have read here. I too kept a journal & still do and I would take a highlighter and mark my journal whenever he lied with one color, with another color I would mark the nasty name calling, and on & on. Trying to make a game out of helped some while going through this. I tried many things and some worked sometimes and not others but do whatever it takes to calm the fears and bring peace and tranquility back into your life.

  • Debbi

    ((HUGS To You Tamie))
    God IS helping you Tamie by making you take that first step and tell this man you will no longer tolerate this–good job! you have realized you deserve better. It will be a slow uphill battle but you can do it because I see your concern for your children and that makes you so much better and stronger than he will ever be. I too have wondered if my ex ever loved me–sometimes I replay my wedding over in my mind & I see him standing there with his fingers crossed behind his back & laughing and then on top of the hurt I feel stupid I did not see this & stop it sooner. Don’t be hard on yourself–if you went back and did it over you probably still would have done the same thing but now you see that same thing is not working. So just in case, start banking some money, talk to an attorney to see what your state’s laws are on separation, divorce and child custody so you know ahead of time if it comes to that. & Please get tested for STD’s. Mine slept around and at the end even picked up escorts, etc. Please make this testing a priority I can’t stress this enough. If you contract something you will be no good for your children. So take care of all YOUR personal and legal needs first so you can take care of your children. Keep posting we are all here to listen.

  • Tamie

    Thank You @ Debbi. And I know about putting money away been trying for months he tells me to leave but then makes sure I am broke so I can’t. It’s insane. I think deep down he is afraid he is making a mistake…and honestly he probably is.So he pushes us away, punishes us for his discontent justifies his next moment of doing whatever he wants to make him feel good with putting up with us. But makes sure we aren’t so out of reach he cant change his mind and come back…he wants us… me to have no other choice but to put up with it. It’s so unfair to us…just like the disease is unfair to him. I know everything happens for a reason, and I feel like when it’s time to go God will open that door for me, and help me find a place for me and the kids to go.The house we live in is a inheritance from his mom and dad I still pay the mortgage and its in only his brother and sisters name( not his because of all his issues) but at the end of the day its his mom and dads so I know me and the kids have to leave. So here I go at 45 single with two small children making less money then I have made in over ten years…with nothing but the clothes on our back and a few packed bags…I am scared to death. I will never get a penny of child support from him…he knows how to work the system.I am on my own I know that…me and God that is.I have believed and only planned for a future as a family…maybe this family has become my addiction…but I truly believed it was such an incredible gift it was worth fighting for. All the wasted years makes me angry…I wouldn’t trade my children for anything in the world but all the pain all the hurt all the struggle for what for him to abandon us and all of it served no purpose but to hurt me and my children even more. I don’t get it. I am not a victim mind you I made to choice to stay after I knew how bad it was, but my children didn’t I can see the effects of seeing all this in my big kids and the choices they are making.It kills me the most to think I could have changed that by walking away and showing them how wrong his behavior was kills me. I thought I was teaching them of loyalties and unconditional love.More guilt…why do I as not the alcoholic have to be the one holding all the responsibility, guilt and pain. I am so tired. God doesn’t give us more then we can handle…and I know that whatever this is is part of my whatever lessons I need to learn in this life path to better serve our God.But right now it seems like a very pointless empty painful existence of wasted time. I just wish I could see forward just enough to find a little hope in tomorrow. I miss my best friend and soul mate ( or so I believed ) more then words can do justice. I the idea it was all just an illusion is more then my heart can bare. He called this morning to tell me he was coming home and I just had to deal with it he doesn’t know who I am anymore, I told him he knew exactly who I was he knows me better then anyone but I wouldn’t allow him to hurt me anymore enough is enough no more free passes, a true friend doesn’t sugar coat everything you do wrong they are honest but always there for you, I have done that, but I have to draw boundaries about what I will and will not tolerate regardless if you are sick or not.
    I know I am very hurt, angry and scared right now praying I am doing the right thing for everyone involved. Not just me and as I read your post I don’t know that I am not a blind text book classic co dependent.I am trying to see the difference in trying to control the situation and drawing the lines in how I allow another to treat me. If he wasn’t an alcoholic none of this would be acceptable does it make it different because he is? I don’t know anymore…And God help me I love him still will till the day I die…why and is hatting him the only option right now? I am so tired, wish I had the answers I pray for wisdom and peace and for my children and for him.

    Sorry about my whinning not my usual m.o. just ran across all of you at just the right time. If I am wrong or doing something wrong please tell me…I dont need sugar coating I just need answers. Praying Praying Praying.

  • Debbi

    Tamie:
    I feel what you are going through & right now it probably feels like you are a yo-yo because you know you are at the point of making decisions and he knows that too so he’s putting the pressure on you. Take All The Time You Need To Try Everything & Make The Decisions This Time That Are The Right Ones For YOU! God Will Open that Door but not until you are ready & that takes work on your part.

    Can I make a couple of suggestions? If your name is not on the mortgage or the deed to the house stop paying the payments & keep that part of your money you were paying that with since you know you will not get to keep that house.

    Tell yourself to “do it afraid but do it” after you take the time to make those decisions. It is never too late to show your kids what their mom is made of–my 90 year old mother still amazes me every day! Take your time this is not a race. But make sure you care for yourself first right now.

    I have taken that word “co-dependent” from my vocabulary now. Women mostly get that label because they stay to protect their children and their families and by so doing some psychologist wants to label us with a disease. Remove that word from the decscription of yourself–you protected your family & your children–Change that word to HERO! Be Proud!–You Stayed & Protected your family. You don’t want to hate him but you have the right to be angry with him because he started this chain of events that led you to have to do what you have to do & I know you will do the right thing for you and your family. My prayers are with you.

  • Tamie

    Debbi you are an amazing individual, today I needed to hear your words and God put you in my path. Counting my blessings.

    Today is a bad day but it’s only one day, tomorrows a new one. So goal for today and tomorrow survive this storm…and stop answering his phone calls till I escape the tail spin of today.

    Praying for with all my heart…Thank You for being here.

  • Kendall

    Thank you for this post, and thanks to all who commented. I feel so stressed and confused. I have two alcoholics in my life: my older sister, and a childhood friend who is now in recovery. The childhood friend looked me up on facebook 2 years ago and we started spending a significant amount of time together. He was/is separated from his wife of almost ten years. Our attraction seemed instantaneous and mutual when we met up after having drifted apart for many years….really great chemistry. But he was drinking then and it took him about 6 months to get sober, which he is now. Unfortunately, he still has most all of the same tendencies. Honestly, he acts like a jerk a lot of the time; he has a negative attitude (as I do right now); he’s always changing his tune about things and having ‘breakthroughs’ only to go back to his usual ways; flakes out on plans often; blurts out sexist remarks all the time. But the crazy thing is, a few short weeks into our ‘reunion’ he just happened to lease a home in my parents’ neighborhood. Strange coincidence. Then just a year later, my older sister ended up moving back to my home state and in with my parents. My parents are SEVERE enablers and after a short time of leasing a home for her and handing over one of their cars to her, they moved her in with them. They buy her cigarettes, they pay for most everything, as she is unemployed, in her late 40s. As the childhood friend can be extremely charismatic and charming when he wants to, my parents took right to him. He preaches about his recovery to them, and told me that it aids his recovery to help other alcoholics. Now, I know in my heart that the friend and my sister have been in contact. I know it. But I do not speak with her because of a recent violent episode in which she was drunk and struck me in the face in front of my parents in their home. But anytime anything significant happens in my family, I start hearing from the friend all of a sudden. When I told him I felt uncomfortable at the thought of him communicating with my estranged sister, he denied it. It’s really messing with my mind, these patterns of contact coinciding with family events. So, why am I wasting time on this ‘friend’, whose behavior is often already offensive and questionable even aside from communicating with my own sister behind my back? (And for the record, it would be nothing romantic between my sister and friend; unfortunatley my sister has physically ruined herself, and the years of drinking has also stunted her intellectual growth.) Could someone please tell me why I keep coming back for more with the friend? Why am I doing this to myself and what can I do (or not do) from here? I’m attending Al-Anon, but I’m so angry over this situation that I rarely dare open my mouth in the meetings because I don’t want to bring my toxicity into that setting. It’s supposed to be about experience, strength, and hope.

  • Debbi

    kendall you are in a tough spot right now & I can see you really need to vent about this. We all will listen–so vent here often. I understand you’re not comfortable with sharing this right now at Al Anon so perhaps a counselor who can help you see things objectively and deal with your anger.

    I sometimes think that alcoholics become “tempoarily sober” when they want to enable someone else’s drinking. Is it about maybe having someone to control later? My ex got others to start drinking or drinking heavier – all except me that is. Once he got them drinking he would start telling others about their “drinking problem”. It never ceased to amaze me – like he was “recruiting” others.

    Stay strong Kendall & you can always “vent” here when needed.

  • ber

    im very happy i came across this site. i do hope it helps me. thank you.

  • Heather

    I have spent the last three years in love and living with an alcoholic. I have learned to lie to protect him and sadly i have learned to lie to protect myself. I learned about disappearing acts deception and i learned that my alcoholic boyfriend and i went to alanon. I learned that he is not capable of loving me or anyone else. In hate the disease. I hate what it did to me and i hate that i made myself available and enabled. I hate that i lost many people in a sh

  • mace

    I am getting familiar with this website and wonder why at my age, I have to deal with this topic with my current man.
    We are on this roller coaster of him telling lying and saying he will do something and won’t do it. It’s early in the relationship, and I am trying to get emotionally out.
    I told him it was over last week, and he didn’t call, but he did come by and take the trash to the curb because it was too heavy for me.
    He has tools in my house from a job he should have completed a month and a half ago. I think he is leaving the tools here to have an entry-way back behind closed doors. The lies are overwhelming.
    All this has left me sad, and I feel like I’m being put on hold. I have loaned money, bought his alcohol, etc., but now see myself as an enabler.
    Pray for me and I am seeking heavenly guidance as well cause this really hurts.

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