Husband’s Alcoholism Progressively Getting Worse

Admin (JC):
 Thanks for sharing your story. I am so sorry to hear that you and your marriage are suffering due to your husband’s drinking problem. I found great support and help when I started participating in the Al-anon program. Your story reveals many of the classic character attributes seen in people when alcoholism is present, lying, abuse, split personality and many others. I identified with your spouse’s alcoholism progressively getting worse. I’ve seen the same thing happen in many alcoholics through the years. As I read your story, it’s obvious that you are caught in the grip of this horrible disease and you too are getting progressively worse. There is hope though, it’s possible to overcome being angry with an alcoholic and learn how to enjoy your life while still living with them.

Here are a few articles that may help you momentarily:

We generally have several readers who respond with experience, strength and hope in the comments section. I’m confident that they will have a few excellent suggestions.

Guest Post: Please feel free to leave comments below the article.

lonely beautifulI met my second husband at the gym. He was tall, muscular, and in great shape. After our first few dates, he told me that he had to move back to his parents’ house for a year because he had crashed and burned by having had to travel so much for his previous job. He mentioned “drinking wine every night alone in his hotel room” but, at the time, it did not register as alcoholism because I had never really known an alcoholic. Anyway, fast forward, and we’ve been married now for four years. My husband is a really great guy when he’s at his best. He’s very intelligent, caring, attentive to me, a great cook, good handyman around the house, and an avid reader. He performs very well at his job and fixes a lot of problems making himself invaluable to his boss because he’s so intelligent and capable. He reads so much and knows so much that he often will fix issues or problems for me or my family (ie health, home repairs, advice, etc). He has backpacked around the world, followed the Grateful Dead around the US and Europe, and loves to have a good time….and a good time, unfortunately though, mostly includes drinking.

My wonderful, smart, and caring husband is now up to between two and four bottles of wine a day. During the week, he drinks two to three bottles of wine a night, and on the weekends it can get up to between three to five bottles per day. If it’s football season, than easily more towards four to five bottles by midnight. He starts guzzling around three in the afternoon. This has been getting progressively worse over the last two years in which he now hides it around the house, sneaks out to buy more, LIES, and has secret stashes he drinks when everyone is in bed. I calculated that he spends about $400-$500 per month on cheap red wine.

Split Personality Of AlcoholicMy wonderful, smart, and caring husband does not stay wonderful and sweet after the second bottle. He gets edgy and negative. He starts cussing at people on TV and proclaiming how much he hates this person or that person throwing the f-word or n- word (racial slur) around in every sentence. He becomes callous and insensitive to me and laughs or becomes sarcastic like a rebellious 13 year old if I get upset about something. He truly is Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. He is a bonified jackass when drunk and it is very unpleasant to endure. I usually just go to bed as early as possible to miss out on all the “fun” and then wake the next morning to a low grumpy bore.
There has been physical abuse a few times. The police have been to our house twice. He has hit, choked, and kicked me and thrown things. He threw an apple so hard at my leg a few weeks ago that it left a black bruise the size of a grapefruit on the back of my thigh. I do blow up every few months, though and go for blood hissing, “You pathetic weak loser of a man….drink you loser because you can’t go through life sober like strong winners do. You’re a weak pus%$^! ” I’m not justifying the physical abuse but I do fall into a seething rage every few months which is not safe to do when he is drunk.

From JC: I thought this would be a good place to share another post with you on How To Love An Alcoholic.

The alcohol is really hurting him. He looks TERRIBLE. He has gained so much weight that he looks pregnant. His nose is red and veiny. His skin is puffy and blotchy. He has a low sex drive. His neck is sagging and fatty so has severe sleep apnea. He has sickly blue bags under his eyes. He’s been in the emergency room twice with panic attacks this year. He had to have cataract surgery last year and I read that alcohol abuse can be a factor for early onset. He’s now having chronic and severe nosebleeds and alcohol is likely the culprit as well. His nose has big broken veins on it. Not a pretty picture. He’s often in a low level depression and irritable. It is a vicious cycle of drink, get depressed and anxious, and drink to relieve those feelings.

My husband SAYS he is ready to quit drinking but talk is cheap. He has said this four or five times before. I am in the process of detaching from him. I am starting to envision a new life possibly without him. I am looking at other men and wondering what they are like. I see strong, fit men jogging in our neighborhood and I admire them. I am working out more at the gym and buying myself new clothes. I am fantasizing about what it would be like to go to my beloved Paris and stroll through the streets with someone who is more interested in the city than gobbling down bottles of its wine. I imagine sipping a coffee with this person at midnight and then strolling back to our hotel hand in hand enjoying each other and the experience. I do not envision walking nervously behind my husband as he stumbles boobishly out of some café pestering me to let him buy one more bottle for the hotel room. I do not envision waiting impatiently for his groggy self to finally roll out of bed at noon so we can go do something. I do not envision me tossing and turning all night because his loud slobbering wino snoring is keeping me and others at the hotel awake. I do not picture making love to a wine-smelly bloated man with nasty breath in Paris. I do not picture myself having fun, romance, or making sweet memories with a pregnant looking depressed fat man with wine and food stains all over his shirt in Paris.

I don’t and I won’t. Mr. Hyde sucks big time.

I see them around all the time, these men, these joggers. I can tell. I bet they would rather have a coffee at midnight than suck back another bottle. I bet they would stroll hand in hand with me back to the hotel for a good night’s sleep or something even better rather than more booze. I bet they would. You know why? These men I see, I bet they would. I bet they would because, in the morning, they would want to be up early. They would want to be up early so they could jog in the beautiful morning sunlight of Paris.

Please feel free to leave comments below…

253 comments to Husband’s Alcoholism Progressively Getting Worse

  • sylvia knafl

    friends out there
    i always read this dramas and difficulties, hardly ever hear about the healing or the recovery of someone. and it happens, people recover from alcohol the get their lives in shape and they can have a good live. we all have big expectations in our partners, and ideas about how things should be.we are all learning from our experiences and even from an alcoholic. if we can see things from a distance and a higher point of view all is well because we are all protected and taken care of.it would be a pleasure to hear about the ones who recovered and how they did it. bless you all sylvie

  • admin

    Thanks Chloe for sharing the good news 🙂 I SO much appreciate the gratitude that you have expressed to all of us who have been with you on the Internet during this time. I love it when there’s good news, I really mean that. I frequent AA meetings and love it when the chips are dispersed at the end of a meeting for those celebrating an anniversary date of sobriety. There is always hope that an alcoholic will hit bottom.

    Smiling with gratitude for your situation right now and asking God to heal the hurts of all involved.

    This article my be insightful: Preparing The Home For A Recovering Alcoholic

  • Chloe

    Thank you JC for this compassionate caring site. It is truly an amazing comfort and resource to those of us living in our situation. It is a light and safe harbor in an often dark world. It is very therapeutic to be able to post freely and then have kind people respond.

    To everyone, although my specific spiritual beliefs may differ from others here, one thing I can definitely say is that THERE is no WAY I would be where I am without my trust in what I call Divine Spirit or God as others may call him. I am referring to the Great Spirit flowing through all of creation, me, and you. For those saying trust in God here, that is precious advice. Though I personally do not believe in literal hell or Satan as others may and think certain religious teachings are man made, I absolutely have experienced very often a divine, loving, peaceful, compassionate presence which I refer to as Spirit. If I can give you who are feeling scared, hopeless, or so sad right now any advice it is that you came from Loving Spirit and you return to Loving Spirit. Seek this out and you will find it. Living without this spiritual connection and understanding is like being a walking dead person in my opinion. Many many people today are disconnected from Spirit/God and I wonder how they make it day by day. Don’t mean to preach just wanting to help and encourage.

    Bye everyone!

  • Louisa

    Thank you Chloe

    My husband the alcoholic, chronic pot smoker, went to a lawyer to start divorce proceedings. This is how he is threatening me and punishing me for being so unhappy, depressed and angry after years of emotional abandonment due to addictions. Now you may say, be glad, he’s doing you a favor, etc. but here’s the thing…..it means i have to move and sell the house with not much money. Most likely I will have to go live with my mom…….i am 52 years old. I was just starting to focus on myself with alanon, classes at a women’s help center etc. And now because of his pride and ego, I have to completely start over with almost nothing. Most of the articles I read is that it’s the alcoholic who is in danger of the wife filing for divorce, but my husband turns it around and says either take me as I am or you will be homeless. I am a nervous wreck because of the housing situation and pets and having to move again. Such unbelievable cruelty. We just bought this cute little house less than a year ago, so just when I have made the house a home, he wants to throw it all away. I felt I could have handled his addictions now that I was getting help and would have liked to work on myself and find a job etc. but now this.

  • Louisa

    And of course in classic alcoholic fashion, i am 100% to blame, he says he has his addictions under control and it is me that needs help. I need help alright! HE has decided he is done with me so he can live the way he chooses without me interfering in his lifestyle.

    Your thoughts are appreciated. I just am not ready to have to move again so soon after establishing myself here and making new friends and new support groups. Plus my pets will suffer because of his self centered cruelty.

  • Sally

    Louisa, I don’t know what state you live in, but you should consult your state bar association for a referral to a pro bono attorney who can help you with the issues in divorce. Your husband may be made to provide what’s called “maintenance” for a specified period of time to give you means to survive while you find a job and get re-established in your town so that you don’t have to move. At the very least, you’re entitled to part of the proceeds from the sale of the house. Get moving and get on the phone and find someone to help you. You don’t have to do this alone. Of course your husband is being cruel – that’s a mainstay of the alcoholic personality. His first priority is and always has been himself. Keep a journal and document everything that comes up and make notes of any assets your husband has. You’ll find, after talking to an attorney, that you’re not powerless. It may take plenty of phone calls, but you can find someone to give you the help you need. Contact a battered women’s shelter for referrals to services that will help you get back on your feet. Keep going to Alanon and ask for help there, too. You’re stronger than you think. We’re here for you. Please stay in touch and let us know how you’re doing.

  • Chloe

    Louisa, I agree with Sally. Talk to an attorney and find out all of your options and entitlements. If you sell the house, you should get some money, right? Then you may need to live with your mom temporarily as you work and save up a little more to buy your own little place if need be. With all the foreclosures, you can get good deals today. If my husband had basically told me to either put up with his alcoholism or get out of the house, I would be gone. How can anyone keep living with such abuse? This is no way to live. Your husband is being totally selfish, cruel, and bullying. At this point, I would be saying good riddance to him, talking to an attorney, and seeking as much support as possible in Alanon, a church, etc. Only you know what is best for you and at what point you should cut your losses. For me though, my husband threatening divorce because he chooses getting high over me would be the end of it all. It would just be too emotionally abusive of a situation for me to stay with a person like that year after year.

    Keep us posted. Stay calm. You are stronger than you think. Surround yourself with kind caring people from alanon or maybe a church. Take good care of yourself and rest as much as you can to combat the stress.

  • Chloe

    Well here is an update on my situation. Yesterday, I had to go to the hospital to have a very minor surgery on a tendon, and then spent the day resting and on pain meds. My husband has been wonderful for the last month other than some grumpiness a few weeks ago. We had a talk and then he really put forth effort to stop being so pessimistic and mopey. He was GREAT for two weeks or so after that low point. Well, last night he kept encouraging me to take my meds and go to bed around 9 to get plenty of rest. I finally fell asleep around 10 and then woke up at 3 am to go sit up on the couch, and lo and behold, he is slumped over on the couch drunk. Sad. He had a coffee mug next to him, and I sipped it, and of course it had some wine in it. I woke him up and he was boobishly disoriented. He then started stupidly trying to argue with me about the surgery and saying the doctors were idiots and it was unnecessary. He also was blubbering on about how stupid my parents were and how they are dumbass yankees. I told the blubbering boob to just go to bed and leave me in peace. He did, and then at 5 am, the radio alarm went off and the dummy just keep sleeping through it as it blared through the house. I then had to get up and go turn it off and he snapped “Fu…. bitch” at me because I woke him up coming into the room. He later woke up groggy, disoriented, and panicky around 9 am sheepishly and guiltily checking on me. I told him it really sucked having Mr. Hyde there when I was in pain at 3 am and needed HIM and how disappointed I am. He did apologize, and said it was a stupid slip up. I told him I am giving him until May to sort this out and will let this slip up go. However, I definitely am leaving in May if this reoccurs and he keeps apologizing. He is such an intolerable jackass idiot when drunk and I am so disgusted by that alter ego persona. He is so cocky, insensitive, and mean. Yuck yuck yuck!!!! Anyway, I am sad today but resigned to the fact that if this continues and
    becomes a pattern then I will leave. I’d rather be alone with my kids than go back to dealing with that blubbering boobish drunk idiot for the rest of my life. Ughhhh…JC is it expected that an alcoholic will have some slips? I feel like I need to hang in there and give him another chance since he was doing so well. Or am I back on the merry go round and headed back into insanityville? I’m on these pain meds today so it’s hard to think straight! I guess the answer is to go forward, wait and see, and stick to my boundary of leaving in May if he continues to drink regularly? Oi vey….he was doing so well 🙁

    Am I deluded or is there still hope?

  • Chloe

    Sorry, the question in my post about an alcoholic having slip ups is really dense….of course they do….I just can’t think straight on these meds today!!!

  • Louisa

    Chloe please run to get the book, Should I leave or Should I stay by Lundy Bancroft
    . An abuser is an abuser with or without alcohol, Yes, the alcohol can make him more out of control, but abuse and alcohol are two separate issues. Your problems will not end just because he quits drinking.
    Immaturity, abuse, addiction, personality disorders……….read about them in the book.

  • Tabitha

    As I stated up above in my post, I am with an abusive alcoholic that suffers from combat PTSD. I bought the book that Louisa has recommended. I bought it a few months ago and read it. It is eye opening, but at the same time there were parts of it that didn’t really make sense to me. My husband was not abusive before coming home from Iraq and starting to drink. Had he been, there is no way I would have stayed for almost 22 years. But, that is not my reality anymore. My reality is that he is abusive NOW, whether it is PTSD related or alcohol related. Chloe, it is very hard living with an alcoholic. Add in abuse and you have an entirely new set of problems. Just last night I saw codependent behaviors in my 12 yo daughter concerning her dad. I’ve prayed and thought on these things all day today. This is no longer just about me. If you have children (I can’t remember if you’ve said), please consider them. I have been very selfish in staying, thinking I was doing the right thing, only to see some serious emotional issues develop with all 3 of my children, one of whom is in college now. I believe that God is showing me these things all at once knowing that I would not leave for my own safety/wellbeing, but knowing that I will for the sake of my kids. But, I would get the book. Read it. Meditate on it. Take what you need and leave the rest. God save us all.

  • Diana

    Louisa,
    Great suggestion regarding the book mentioned above. You are so right that “an abuser is an abuser with or without alcohol.” As I read the posts today all I can think is, “Why do we refuse to acknowledge what is right before our eyes? Why do we keep giving second chances, overlooking & excusing people who mistreat us and our precious children?” If my child would tell me that another child was mistreating him/her on the playground I would lovingly suggest that they make friends with someone who is nice to be with and I would supervise to be sure they were protected from abuse or bullying. What happens to us to settle for so very little? Why do we offer our hearts, lives, emotions, money, support, to those who only take from us? Living without abuse and in peace is a beautiful thing. Lord, help us to find You and peace in our lives and to detach from abusers in a loving way and to protect our children from the pain of living in a hostile and drunken environment at home.

    Should I leave or Should I stay by Lundy Bancroft

  • @ Louisa – agreed … anything by Lundy Bancroft is worth the read; he works closely with abusers and their partners and fully understands the dynamics of domestic violence and abuse. @ Chloe – yes, relapse/slips can be a part of RECOVERY. In my situation, it just made me dig deeper into my Al-Anon practice and my own Recovery with a lot of help from a SPONSOR. IMO, DETACHMENT, (with Love if possible; with a black iron skillet if necessary), is KEY … resetting boundaries … taking care or yourself … I have not been following all earlier posts so I will stop here … One Day At A Time … thanks JC for this site/helpful.

    Should I leave or Should I stay by Lundy Bancroft

  • admin

    You are welcome Laura. So many people have benefited from the information we have here. I am so grateful to all of our readers who take time to share experience, strength and hope.

    There is music in our messes. When I was going through all of the drama associated with alcoholism, I had no idea that there was a bigger picture being painted on the canvas of my life that would eventually benefit people all over the world.

  • Laura

    Also by Lundy Bancroft: “Why Does He Do That
    , (Inside the Minds of Angry and Controlling Men” …

  • Chloe

    Thanks for the book suggestions ladies. I will check them out. My husband though is NOT abusive AT ALL when sober. He’s like a big teddy bear. Yesterday, he made me chicken noodle soup, brought me cheese and crackers, ginger ale, rubbed my back the whole time at the hospital, and was very concerned and nervous when we got home about the pain. He set up the couch with all the pillows and blankets. He then ran back out to the store again last night to get me some snacks because I felt too queasy to eat this pork tenderloin he made. BUT….he slipped up and bought wine…..then shuffled me off to bed and then by 3 am Mr. Hyde was back on the scene. And then after 2 bottles, he DOES become mean, callous, and bullying to varying extents. He’s just out of it and a different person. The bottom line is if he does not stop drinking by May then I throw in the towel. He did very very well for a month but ultimately he decides our marital fate with his choices until May. I just have to wait and see what happens. What else is there to do? I do know he IS TRYING but maybe ultimately he loves that wine too much. Maybe he will choose that over me. If it weren’t for these pain meds numbing me, I would be heartbroken right now.

  • Sandy

    One of the things that has kept me locked up over the years is… potential. The relationship has the “potential” to be wonderful again. He has the “potential” to change. The definition of potential is…possible…as opposed to actual. Well that’s an eye opener. I dream of the potential… and this eats up years of my life waiting for the possible to become actual. We live the actual, an alcoholic is an alcoholic, abuse is abuse, addiction is progressive unless THEY choose to stop the cycle. Our life cannot be put on constant hold waiting for the potential to become actual. The ONLY potential we can control is in ourselves and we, through the strength of God, friends, others and our choice to walk on can make our potential into a reality. We have desires and needs and capabilities that should not be dependent upon who the alcoholic is. Its time to rediscover ourselves, deal with our unhealthiness from being in an unhealthy place and take a look outside the walls of addiction. I was so surprised to find a world out there full of opportunities. When I was finally able to tear my eyes and thoughts and actions away from what my husband was doing, I realized how warped my thinking had become. Take small steps to regain who YOU are and focus on not living your life for “what could have been.” Now, lets hope I can live my own words !!!

  • admin

    Chloe, thanks for being so open and honest with us all.

    I always knew my wife loved me even though she was Mrs. Hyde more than herself. It’s like there’s a love flame on the inside of them that gets dimmer and dimmer because of their alcohol abuse.

    In answer to your question; “Is it expected that an alcoholic will have some slips?” Not if they get involved with a support group and make staying sober their number one priority.

    I think the main thing is to take care of yourself and really start enjoying life even if he is drinking or not.

    Sounds like you have accepted things the way they are for the moment and are willing to walk things out a day at a time until May. Keep the focus on YOU getting well and enjoying your life as much as possible.

    One of the things that really helps me is to make a list of things I am grateful for. Some of my friends in Al-anon do this on a daily basis.

    If you have a chance you may want to try going to an AA meeting. There is hope to be found through listening to recovering alcoholics telling their stories.

  • admin

    Thanks Scott, I totally understand what you are saying. I’m kind of a die hard when it comes to hanging in there. As a moderator of the site and friend of our participants and the alcoholics, I try to encourage people to get as much education as possible from different resources available to us.

    If we choose to leave the alcoholic or stay with them, we are still in need of a tremendous amount of inner healing. If we can understand a little better why alcoholics are the way they are, perhaps we can heal quicker.

    In my experience, Al-anon and AA have been great places that have assisted me in the healing process. I have healed scars on my heart from many years of attending support group meetings.

  • Diana

    Dear Admin,
    There is much truth in your phrase, “There is music in our messes.”. It gives us hope and encouragement that all things can work for good if we trust in God. It’s good for us to examine our part in the equation and to make the necessary adjustments to break the negative patterns of our lives.

  • Julie

    Scott, just to let you know if you read Lundy Bancroft he does mention that women can be abusive too. But the statistics show it happens more often with men. Alcoholism does not cause the abuse Bancroft is writing about. These abusers abuse whether they abuse substances or not. It is a way of thinking and a feeling of entitlement. Alcoholism just casues more problems and makes it worse to deal with from the victim’s point of view. All of us here know that women can be alcoholics as much as men and do cause great turmoil in the life of men. And we are hear to listen and support you too, not matter your gender.

  • Louisa

    Chloe, in regards to your comment that your husband is not abusive at all when not drinking,,,,,,that is why you need to read the book. If he was not an abusive man, not even the alcohol could make him an abuser. The abuse is a trait that is in his inner core, the alcohol releases it. I find it hard to believe that if he never took another drink he would never verbally abuse you again.

    The book referenced:Should I leave or Should I stay by Lundy Bancroft

  • Diana

    Scott,
    It does seem as if many of the books are talking about men as being the problem and we know that is not true. I personally know several emotionally abusive women who I wouldn’t want to be in the same room with because of their mean attitudes. You are right, it’s not the gender it’s the ADDICTION!

  • Louisa

    Scott, Bancroft doesnt say only men are abusers, but the realty is that statistically more men are abusive then women.

  • Chloe

    In my case, my husband is not abusive when sober. He is very gentle, laid back, and caring. We rarely ever fight when he is sober, and if we do, we are able to quickly mend the situation. In our case, the alcohol is the problem. It has a terrible effect on his personality after so many drinks…usually the second bottle of wine. His personality radically changes and he becomes a troublemaker, insensitive, and a general jackass. He is NOT like this when sober. He’s a big teddy bear type when sober. I believe it is the frontal cortex of the brain (not sure…need to google it) that is responsible for inhibiting aggression, and this is what is impaired by alcohol.

    I know sober abuse when I see it, believe me. My ex husband had a narcissistic personality disorder, or at least very narcissistic traits, and he was verbally abusive, manipulative, and crazymaking at times. If you have ever dealt with a narcissist, you know exactly what I am talking about. My husband now is NEVER abusive when sober and I know the difference. Though, ironically, his drunk behavior reminds me of my ex’s sober narcissistic behavior.

  • Julie

    Scott you are not listening. We are agreeing that your wife is an abuser. We are simply explaining the reason for the gender use in the titles of Lundy’s books is because the MAJORITY of abusers ARE males. It would help you immensely to understand your wife’s abusive behavior if you would read his books. And read the introduction where he states why he uses the pronouns “he” and “him” and explains that females can be abusive.

  • John

    Scott, I know the type of situation you lived in as I lived with an abusive alcoholic wife.

    As I read the other posts, it is clear that there is a misunderstanding here.

    This initial conversation has steamed from someone suggesting a book about abuse in order to HELP people with the difficult situations they are dealing with.

  • Julie

    And no one is saying that males are the sole problem in society. At least I did not get that from what the posts here say. We all believe you and agree with you that your wife is an abuser. And if you can ignore the use of the male pronouns I think Lundy Bancroft’s book would be a positive read for you.

  • Chloe

    Here is some info about alcohol and its effects on the brain if I misquoted about the frontal cortex if anyone is interested.

    http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/you-illuminated/201006/your-brain-alcohol

  • Barbie

    FYI Dr. Drew has been talking about addiction this week on his show. Alot of good info.

  • Sandy

    Its interesting how much pent up frustration is evident in our lives. This is part of the dysfunction of the cycle of addiction and evidence we have work to do to be healthy. Just glancing through the posts it’s evident that we are all on the same page. Addiction is the enemy here…whether male or female… doesn’t matter.

  • Chloe

    The only solution for me so far is to go day by day, one foot in front of the other, and trust in my Higher Power. Just one day at a time these days.

  • Janice Marquis

    Has anyone ever had this happen? The alcoholic (whose my boyfriend) makes stuff up about u behind your back to his roomate which is all untrue. So I confronted him and asked did u say these things and he said NO! But why would a man IM with almost 5 years say such horrible things to jeopardize his new housing situation and whats the reason to do this to me I have been an angel to him over the years. He has become quite abusive to me in the past 6 months to the point I c ant live with him or see him as much, I only see him once a week. But presently his mom is very sick too so this adds to our stress….He still tries to control me and who my friends are, he doesnt trust any of them, he has big issues with trust always has……..not with me but in general……..but his abusiveness is adding lots of stress to his dad who is sick at home too……..its just crazy………

  • Laura

    When alchohol/drugs are a factor, any combination of “craziness” can occur … Al-Anon gives you the tools to stop trying “to make sense out of nonsense” and to find some peace and serenity whether your qualifier is still using or not … it really works!

  • Chloe

    Well said Laura. When people take that first sip of alcohol or try that first drug, they just do not know if it will lead them down the path of insanity. There can be a HIGH price to pay for succumbing to the instant gratification quick fix of substances to produce artificial happiness and joy. Did Whitney Houston, with the world at her feet, ever imagine she would end up as she did? Did the lacrosse player in Virginia ever think he would wake up one morning, be escorted to the police station, and told he killed his girlfriend the night before? He was playing golf with his dad and friends the day before and the next day, he’s in jail for murder. Harrowing….

    I think most of us here have definitely felt the effects of the insane crazy side of alcohol. It’s the side you certainly don’t see in the glossy and slick beer and liquor ads and commercials. Life can be hard at times, and I can understand the temptation to numb and self medicate. Iin the long run, it can make one’s life a thousand times worse though.

    Also, it truly is harrowing to think that over time one is altering one’s brain structure with these substances. It truly is a case of Dr. Jekyll (the good one) slowly slipping away and being at some point irrevocably replaced by Mr. Hyde (the nightmare).

    I guess this is the conundrum we all face when trying to navigate life with an addict. Have they irrevocably pickled their brains? Will they? If so, when….next year or in ten years?

    No easy answers. I guess this is the part where the veteran’s advice of lovingly detach, take care of yourself, seek your Higher Power, and join a support group comes in. We also have to establish our short and long term boundaries. My long term boundary is checking out by May because my children come first. They will not be forced to be subjected to an alcoholic by their own mom who is supposed to protect them. I have to keep telling myself this.

    So by May, if Hyde is still coming around, we’re outta here. I’ll keep everyone posted so maybe someone can learn or see something from my own experience, mistakes, and/ or breakthroughs. Thank you everyone who posted their thoughts and advice. I’m off those groggy pain meds today and was able to read and process all the comments. Thank you.

    For now, we’re back in the sobriety saddle, and we shall see how long it lasts this time.

  • Caitlyn

    Chloe,
    You stick to your guns about May. Keep dangling the May date at your alcoholic so he knows you’re deadly serious for your children’s sake most of all. He is allowed one little slip up. He’s had that. No more until May. The one little slip up is part of his recovery. I’m guessing he felt ashamed because he didn’t stay out there with the bottle. But can’t be overlooked by him. He must realise you are serious about going in May if he doesn’t stay sober. Advise him to join a support group like Al Anon to help him through. You could all go for the support to keep you moving forward on the path of sobriety.

    I’m keeping all of you in my thoughts every night. Bless you and your household. Only happiness and joy to you all. You deserve no less.

  • Ben

    As a statistics guru and an MBA, I would have to disagree with Louisa’s interpretation of a statistical “fact” that more men abuse than women. While the data may lead one to reach that conclusion, data is meant to be one part of an overall analytical picture. I think the first, and most compelling argument that both sexes abuse equally as much (when adjusted for population differences) is the simple fact that men do not recognize nor report abuse as much as women do. If women report abuse more, then men seem like they are the worse offenders. This, in large part, is because of our social norms that teach men are supposed to be strong and silent and it is shameful to admit that a woman is abusing you, and by doing so, you are destroying your own macho male image. Can you imagine Lifetime Television for MEN, where every movie is about men getting abused? no. That is the elephant in the room that your “statistics” do not address. Both sexes are equal offenders, and all abuse is wrong. Some is just reported more often. As Mark Twain once said “there are lies, damn lies, and then there are statistics.”

  • Chloe

    Thank you Caitlyn for your kind words. You are like a cyber angel on these posts always offering encouragement and kindness to everyone:-) After my first excruciating divorce from my college sweetheart who did had some severe narcissism issues (his mom IS a narcissist) to now dealing with this alcoholism with my 2nd hubby…..I do believe he is seeing WHEN SOBER the raw pain he is causing me by drinking which causes him to go temporarily crazy. He is understanding that when he slips off into lala land, I am left alone dealing with a crazy man and how painful and traumatic this is for the kids and me. I think I am guardedly hopeful that my hubby is on the path to sobriety. His dad has been very distant towards him, my brothers are annoyed with him, his sister is disgusted, and my parents are fed up. I know he feels very ashamed and embarrassed, and does readily admit his drinkiing had gotten ridiculous. He readily admits he has been in the wrong, and stubbornly foolish to
    cling to his delusions of “just having an unusually high tolerance.” So there is ALOT of family/social pressure to clean up his act, make the right choices, and DO RIGHT by me and the kids by maintaing sobriety. He realizes he is at the end of the line because if he screws it up, he will be all alone
    KNOWING that everyone thinks he is a total loser. Both of my brothers are very successful and and he has said that he’s going to feel humiliated the next time he sees them because they know all about the drinking and abuse when drunk. They are both highly motivated and high achievers, plus good to their families, and he KNOWS they are thinking what a loser buffoon their sister married. I mean these are guys that wake up at 5:30 am, go jogging, and have pulled themselves up by their bootstraps starting with nothing. And here he was sleeping in until noon, looking pregnant, lazy, sickly, and always grumpy because of the poisonous crap wine.

    Well, hope is still alive. We shall see. All of you here who are suffering here are in my thoughts and prayers 🙂
    behavior.

  • Chloe

    Sorry for all the typos…I can’t reread and edit with this Ipad!

  • Louisa

    Well Ben, then I guess as long as men are afraid to come out of the closet we will never know the truth. So maybe men and women are more alike than we know, and women are not the weaker more passive sex. I would like to explore men’s aggression from an evolutionary, biological and hormonal perspective. It seems to me that most religions seem to make a big deal out of just how different men and women are. And of course this leads to power roles within the relationship, which always seem to benefit the male more.

  • Julie

    Ben I must mention that Lifetime actually did show a movie about a man who was being abused by his wife. I wish I could remember the name of it. I’ll try to find it. But it was a very sad movie. And you do make a good point. Even in this movie the guy’s own father did not believe him that his wife was abusing him and even called him weak because of it. I’ll try and remember the title it was so long ago that I saw this movie.

  • Julie

    Gotta Love Google. movie is titled “Men Don’t Tell”. I know this is the right one becasue Peter Strauss is the leading actor.

  • Louisa

    Chloe, I’ve been surrounded by alcoholics and addicts my whole life. I just cannot believe that alcohol is a full and adequate explanation for all the cruelty you have been subjected to. He is completely responsible for his actions even while drinking. Your whole family shaming him and trying to destroy whatever shred of decency he has left as a human just seems wrong to me. And so what if he stays sober until May? He could get drunk again in June or six months down the road. I think he not only needs to recover from alcoholism but also work seriously on taking responsibility for his abusiveness. The following quotes I took from Lundy Bancroft’s book.
    “Alcohol provides an abuser with an excuse to freely act on his desires. After a few drinks, he turns himself loose to be as insulting or intimidating as he feels inclined to be, knowing that the next day he can say, “Hey sorry about last night, I was really trashed.”
    “I have had several physically violent clients admit that they made the decision to assault their partners before they had any alcohol in their systems.” From the book, Why Does He Do That?

  • Louisa

    Scott, it you grow up in a fundamentalist or controlling religious household or religious compound with certain messages drilled into your head and brainwashing from day one, it can become very difficult to become a “free minded and free willed people” even as an adult.

  • Louisa

    My daughter is getting her phd in psychology and is currently writing a paper on rape victims,and men’s aggression and violence. I will ask her what conclusion’s or what she has learned during her research in regards to sexual violence against women by men. She works directly with rape victims and has interviewed some perpetrators in jail. I don’t think you can leave sexual violence out of the picture in a discussion on men’s and women’s abusiveness.

  • Louisa

    Scott, I grew up with secular humanist parents, who encouraged freethought and freewill of which I am very grateful for. They taught me to question everything and read, read, read. And that I do.

  • Louisa

    Just because I mentioned rape? It seems valid to me as part of the discussion. Do you think rape by men should NOT be included in the abuse by alcoholics? How much rape is fueled by alcoholism? A lot I bet.

  • Louisa

    Scott, I’m glad you got out of that situation. I agree that was an intolerable situation.

  • Louisa

    oh come on scott, seriously? i dont think there would be that much material on which to write the paper

  • Louisa

    that was nice laura and thought provoking

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