Alison, I’ve heard that most alcoholics are fun to be with. I’m sure he started out to be a great guy. How disappointing you must have been when he got sober and decided to stay married. I have taken the time to link various text within your article to information that may be helpful for you. If I was in your position, I’d steer clear. I value my serenity too much to have it disrupted by being involved in a dysfunctional relationship.
Guest Post By: Alison
7 years ago I met a really great guy at church who was very attractive and we clicked. All seemed good at first, but little did I know he was an alcoholic. I did find this out early on in our relationship, but I had already fallen for him quite a bit, so I found it hard to just cut him off.
I confronted him as kindly as I could, but he wasn’t ready to get help and so I told him we had to scale back our relationship to friendship. That was probably my first mistake but I was trying to be caring and not condemning. We then embarked on a horrible roller coaster (see Tensions Associated With Alcoholism) of trying to be friends, but sometimes we’d end up in bed.
I tried not to get into arguments when he was drunk and he would get desperate and darkly suicidal (Worried Alcoholic Will Commit Suicide) and call me or show up at my place. He lied to me that he was divorced, but he was just separated, so I felt even worse that I’d been messing around with someone’s husband. All through this I felt very alone and very sucked in. No one, including the pastor, would believe me that he was a drinker, as he could still go to work, still looked OK at church and told everyone he just liked a couple of beers at the end of the day and I was overreacting. I didn’t tell them because I was telling tales, I told them because I thought I needed their help.
I had no idea that I was enabling him in this behavior at the time and tried to do everything that I thought a good christian should do, prayed for him and with him, tried to get him to church, nagged him about his drinking and his health, showed up at his house with healthy food, cleaned his house, listened to all of his drunk rantings, got him the Bible on tape. I had no idea how I was making it worse for both of us and getting in the way. (You might enjoy reading about How To Have Tough Love With An Alcoholic.)
I eventually told him he had to get sober and that I would pray for him, but I couldn’t support him any more. He finally went to rehab, got sober and went back to his wife.
Fast forward 7 years and he contacted me again. He is going through a divorce and has been split from his wife for a year. He wanted to see me…I am single and allowed myself to hope that maybe things would be different this time and he was sober and coming back to be with me the right way. But no…sadly he is drinking as bad as ever and tried to be sexual with me the first time we met up. I was so bitterly disappointed that he’d not succeeded and that nothing had changed, and worried that he is killing himself.
He is now saying he wants to be friends and didn’t mean to ‘lead me on’ but although I do still love him in many ways I now have a 2 year old child to think of as well as myself. I guess I need encouragement and strength/wisdom to know what to do for the best. (This is one of my favorite posts on our site: How To Have A Happy Life With An Alcoholic.)
My instinct says cut him off and tell him to come back when he’s sober for a year, but my heart is wanting a softer option. Part of me is disgusted with myself that I am even in this quandary again. I will be so grateful for any advice or wisdom anyone has.
Alison, I think you know what the best thing to do is for you and your daughter in this situation. Having an Alcoholic Boyfriend is going to be nothing but trouble. I highly recommend that you read the comments below this article: Husband’s Alcoholism Getting Worse.
Well, the title Great Guy Turns Out To Be A Married Alcoholic Liar
should be enough to tell you, Walk Away!
I like what you said James. It’s always good to have others take a look at what’s going on in our lives. That’s one of the things I enjoy so much about participating here is that we are able to help one another see a little clearer how alcoholism is effecting our lives.
Alison, there are so many men in this world. Why spend your days worrying if someone is going to get sober or not. Why subject yourself to falling in love with someone who is presently in love with drinking more than anything else in life. Why open the door to exposing your daughter to the chaos of being in a relationship with an alcoholic?
Great guys are around every corner. If you want to find a great guy who doesn’t drink try looking in the church again. What a freak thing to happen to you in a Christian setting. I’ve attended church for many years and have met very ‘few’ active alcoholics.
If I were you, I’d run fast and hard in the opposite direction far away from this man. One of the things we have a tendency to do is want to rescue people who are in trouble. You’ve already learned a hard lesson from this guy. I hope you can see that you are being sucked into the same sort of thing again.
Alison, only you can decide what is best in this situation. I hope you see that this guy is not the “best” for you or your daughter. Alcoholism is a deep dark hole that is so difficult to get out of. I hope you can avoid falling into that hole again.
I’ve been a little hard on you, but you have to see the reality of this situation. Which ever side of alcoholism you choose to be on is going to have a “HUGE” impact on your life.
What do you want?
Serenity or chaos
Happiness or unhappiness
Someone you can trust or a lying alcoholic
Someone who will be committed to you or someone who craves alcohol all the time
To be loved by some one with all their heart or to be rejected because they love drinking more
To be with a man who is stable or someone who is nice one minute and the next a raving mad man
When the house is on fire get the heck out and stay out!
That precious little girl of yours deserves the best that you can give to her. Life’s tough enough when there isn’t an alcoholic around.
I’m praying for you today!
I did not write the title, but yes have taken heed. I have no further contact with him.
Great job, Alison. I know it is a difficult decision to make. I am currently going thru a divorce from an alcoholic husband. Just having to have contact because of the children and visitation makes things so difficult. He will take, take, take and never give an inch. 🙁 So it makes it even tougher for me to have tough love because he misconstrues just the slightest hello as that he has a chance to get me back and avoid this divorce we are going thru. So much easier to have no contact at all.
John yes you were a little hard on me, but I can take it and it was a frank and necessary reply, I appreciate it. I will add that often people in church are not who they say they are and it sometimes takes discernment to find that out, as there are wolves in sheeps clothing so to speak everywhere, including church. Church is the one place where all are welcome and accepted so sometimes toxic people go unnoticed for a while. This was certainly the case in my experience. He had everyone including the pastor fooled. But I have moved on now, and harbour no bad feeling.
Julie thanks for your reply. I hope that things get a bit easier with your husband, that really does sound very difficult indeed. Hugs.
Thanks Alison. God bless you. And you are correct. These addicts and abusers know how to fool everyone. They are great manipulators. Thus that is why I am having such a difficult time. My older children actually call my husband “The Poser”. Because he is so good at fooling everyone so that they do not believe us or they think he is such a great guy. But he treats us so badly. 🙁 Frustrating, indeed. But the truth will prevail. Eventually it has to come out.
Hi Alison, I just came across this article and wondered how things are going? Did you get back with the alcoholic or have you moved on?