Super Nice Guy Turns Out To Be An Alcoholic
I’ve placed a few comments at the end of this article with some links to other articles that will help us understand what is beginning to happen in this relationship with a super nice guy who appears to be an alcoholic.
My story begins 12 months ago. Curiously we didn’t meet anywhere near an alcoholic meeting point such as a club, bar or pub. Anyway, 12 months ago I met this super nice guy and we hit it off straight away. Lots of things in common and similar ideals and principals. Of those things we differed on, we complemented each other, balancing each other out, nicely.We’ll call him Neil. Neil was the perfect conversationalist, perfect gentleman and appeared caring and considerate and very attentive to my needs as well as taking what he needed from a relationship. It was easy to see why someone like me might fall head over heels so swiftly after a very lengthy alone period. I’m talking years, and this due to a bad, really bad break of the heart by my last man.I didn’t notice at first what would become apparent later as the months progressed.
Afterall, I was dead keen on learning all I could about this super guy Neil. Not that he bragged about anything, far from it he was quiet and unassuming. I felt he’d suffered from a bad break up too and was somewhat traumatised by it. I thought, not only will he fix me and make me feel totally loved and wanted, but I could fix him up too in the process of loving him once I got to the bottom of what his woe was. Wow, never contemplated for a minute it was going to be alcohol that was causing his life trauma; not a relationship breakup.
Neil was everything I could ever want in a guy and love hit me so fast and furiously I never had the time to assess the overall package with him. I assumed he was going to be perfect for me in every way. And he was. For a while at least. Either he covered up his problem with alcohol and his associated mood swings or I was blinded by my love for this man.
Neil was not your typical ‘alcoholic type’ if there is such a thing. He is very intelligent with a well paid although at times demanding and stressful job. He dresses corporately with a suit and tie, grooms himself well, showers often like twice a day, he keeps his possessions -car and house – neat, tidy and very clean. Far from the world’s expression of what an alcoholic would be like. In my mind an alcoholic would be out of work, down on his luck, badly dressed, badly groomed and smelt of alcohol and body odour. Totally wrong. I’ve since discovered that indeed an alcoholic can be the absolute opposite of the movie world’s classic drunk character.
Neil began to relax a little more in my company as the months moved on together. It was then after a few ‘episodes’ that I slowly opened my eyes and realised him for what he truly was. His mood swings are related not to a traumatic past but due to him trying to master control over his alcohol consumption. He is at his nastiest when he’s been without for a few days as he attempts to break the alcohol consumption cycle. I’m not talking the wife-bashing kind of nasty, but I am talking verbal and physcological partner abuse. It’s hard to take as I stand and observe his behaviour. I have worked out the behaviour is induced by the alcohol. It has been very draining on our relationship. On me. I’m reaching the point where I’m asking myself do I want this behaviour for the rest of my life. He has asked me to marry him. I can’t say yes and I can’t bring myself to say no because I love Neil. I love Neil when he’s not sloshed to the eyeballs in his fave alcohol poison red wine. The classic drunk’s cheap fix. Neil buys it by the four litre cask and downs it in two sittings or less.
It’s bad, very bad. What do I do? Continue with this guy who other than his drink obsession is real fun to be around and hang out with, or do I do it on my own again, possibly to the end of time? I’m tired of being alone, but I’m scared of getting caught up forever with a long-term drunk. Which is what he is from time to time – at least two, usually three times a week. He blames and excuses himself for his behavior and addiction, saying it’s his job, his family stress him, I stress him and the only way he can cope is to hit the bottle for some relief. It’s his escape from reality, but it is my nightmare.
So where do I go from here. I’m at the cross-road after 12 months. I do, really really really like and love this super nice guy, but certainly not the drink, the drinking and what he becomes when he’s on it, or when he’s off it because he becomes nastily unbearable. I don’t like the fact that we can’t go out together where alcohol presents itself in the situation because he has no control after that first gulping quick drink. It is followed by another, then another, then another in quick succession. It limits my social life with him because for us it means we both as a partnership team shouldn’t drink full stop. And I like to drink socially with my friends.
I feel like a hypocrite because I like to drink socially but now have to resort to sneaking a glass here and there when out socially so that he doesn’t start on one drink too, which then leads to one of his drinking binges. I’m not sure if this is the worst part or the best because Neil recognises he has a problem with alcohol, he tries for a few days to go without, or turns to less alcoholic content drink like beer, he turns nasty because he’s on a downward slide; he turns to drink then all is well again for a short while. It’s a vicious circle. I wish I had an answer apart from getting Neil to go cold turkey, it doesn’t work for long before he’s on the drink treadmill again.
Is there an answer? Is the condition livable for the partnership in the long term? Do you want to start on a lifetime commitment to someone who has this problem? These are the questions I’ve been asking myself for the last two to three months. To date I have not come up with a definitive answer. Would the experts even have a solution to my dilemma for me, for us, for Neil and I to survive long term healthily and happily. Why does the phrase ‘life wasn’t meant to be easy’ keep pulsing through my head?
Thanks for sending in your story. It sounds as though you are experiencing alcoholic relationship issues already. One of the things that so cunningly happens is that “we” start obsessing over the alcoholic. They are addicted to drinking and we become addicted to them, usually without even realizing what is happening. While they are chasing the bottle-we are chasing after them. Sadly, many friends and family members of addicts find themselves with their own addiction, the addiction of focusing on an alcoholic all of the time. It sounds like your super nice guy is starting to consume your thought life with worry and you are already trying to control his alcoholism.