Alcoholic Husband Gets Worse-Wife Gets Better

Guest Post
I am truly grateful to God that I no longer live with an alcoholic. A series of providential circumstances led to him leaving of his own will and I have never allowed him back into our lives. We have been married for 10 years, but I would say the last 6 of those years he has gotten progressively worse. Though a professional banker, he has never managed to hold down a job and I ended up working part time, being a house wife and mother and father to our young child. I have heard it all before: “I love you , I promise I’ll change, I have not had a drink for weeks/months days.”

However, the lowest points have been discovering he had stolen rent money for months and made us homeless and then when he nearly caused a gas explosion whilst drunk and in the care of our child. In my experience, living with an alcoholic is hell-it has affected us financially, psychologically, emotionally and that feeling of waking up every morning and having a pit of fear in your stomach at what the day holds for you.

living separate livesFor years I never had a full nights sleep as sleep would invariably be interrupted by the sound of him falling down the stairs in a drunken heap. I would often spend in the toilet itself. This I felt I had to do before my child woke up to see the mess. In the end, I did not bother to conceal the results of his drunkenness to our child as the incidents were too frequent and too often.

Though we live separately now, I hate getting his phone calls invariably he is drunk. He will even turn up at my home unable to stand as he is so inebriated; the smell of alcohol from him powerful, but he will swear blind he has not had a drink for weeks or months. In my experience, alcoholics will lie and steal from you and have a legendary ability to not see or care about the hurt they inflict on those around them.

I would never live with my husband ever again even if he says he is reformed – all trust has gone and besides I don’t need that influence round my child. Since I have separated from my husband, I have lost my job because of the recession – am setting up my own business, I am struggling financially, but I am more hopeful and positive than I ever was living with him. My self-esteem has soared! He was fond of telling me I could never do anything without him, but I have… and there is more of me to come by God’s grace.

Thanks for sharing your story. Alcoholism does progressively affect the entire family. I know I had lost a lot of self-worth, but learned how to be more confident when I separated from my alcoholic spouse. When the time came for God to start rearranging my situation, my teenage daughter (sixteen at the time) had vowed to never be around her alcoholic step-mom ever again. She said: “dad I am not coming to your house ever again, she (meaning her step-mom) is crazy. One minute she is nice and the next yelling at me.” My daughter could not cope with the angry alcoholic any longer. She had reached the point of no return. Although your story about your alcoholic husband progressivly getting worse is different than mine, some how all of our stories are the same…alcoholism destroys families. It’s funny you mentioned God’s grace because that is what has been working with great success in my life too!

3 comments to Alcoholic Husband Gets Worse-Wife Gets Better

  • Amber

    Isn’t this whole site supposed to be about how to gracefully deal with the chaotic problem of alcohol abuse? This reader talks of god’s grace, but it seems to me that she is full of resentment and unforgiveness, not taking any responsibility for her role in the disease. Everyone plays a part in this disease, it’s not an easy “The alcoholic is the root of all evil in my life” solution…..When I came to AlAnon, I realized what things I was doing that contributed to my husband’s problems, AND when he first got sober, I realized even more what a non-person I had turned him into. We have no children but I had treated him in many ways as my child instead of a free-willed human being. This article did nothing uplifting for me, I don’t usually comment, infact, this is my first time, because I get something useful out of most of your articles, but this article just seemed dreary and morrose.

  • karen

    thank you for sharing your story. unfortunately living with an alcoholic is dreary, morrose, demanding and damaging. Al-anon does teach us how to live with the alcoholic with detachment but dosnt change the real fact that we are damaged and yes we do have to change ourselves but does not change the fact that the alcoholic has used and abused their partners/hostages for their own desires. I fell in love with my alcoholic, by the time things were so severe my life had changed did not know myself, probably didnt know myself before, and now must rebuild it slowly with help and have long way to go

  • Jane

    I think living with someone with a drinking problem is WORSE than the death of someone close to you. I alternate between feeling like I’ve done something wrong to HATING my husband. I loathe the weekends — he’s drunk for three nights in a row and it really sucks! I can’t tell anyone and I have never felt so alone in my life.

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