Is the alcoholic being disrespectful? Did they treat you like a doormat? You don’t have to accept unacceptable behavior. I can teach you how to set boundaries with an alcoholic that will help protect you from their bad behavior affecting you. Some of the things that I learned early on where I could actually ask an alcoholic not to do particular things that they were doing. It was difficult at first to do that because I was very fearful of what how the alcoholic might react to the boundary that I was setting. But once I learned how to do these things, I enjoyed a lot more peace and serenity in my life and I felt just so I was in power.
Here are a couple of scenarios. Unacceptable behavior for me was when the alcoholic would call me horrible names. I had to learn how to stand up for myself. There’s that thing about step back, shut up and smile. I would step back, would shut up and smile and I would think for a moment. And I would say to the alcoholic; “I would appreciate it if you would not call me that anymore because I am not a (blank, blank, blank, blank, blank, blank, blank).” And that’s it. Setting the boundary rather than just letting them call me some degrading name and accepting that unacceptable behavior. I would set that boundary and ask them to not call me that name ever again. Whenever the alcoholic would cross that line and call me that degrading name again, I would reestablish that boundary simply by saying, “I asked you not to call me that.” There’s one way to set a boundary with an alcoholic that would guard you from accepting unacceptable behavior.
I had another instance on an occasion where the alcoholic started bringing people home to party late at night on a weekday, whenever I would have to get up and go to work the following morning and the living room was just outside of our bedroom. Inevitably, what would happen is the alcoholic would be out partying until about two in the morning. I would go to sleep at 10 or 11. Then they would come home at about 2:30 and they would have a couple of friends. They would be just making all kind of ruckus in the living room. I eventually had to set boundary. That type of behavior was not acceptable. We have kids in the house that needed to go to school the following day and all of the commotion was keeping everyone awake. I have to set that boundary with the alcoholic and tell them, “It’s not acceptable for you to come home in 2:30 in the morning and bring your friends here to party. You’re going to have to do that elsewhere.”
Whenever I was met with resistance after setting that boundary and not accepting that behavior, letting them know that and they still tried to cross the line and I had to reestablish that boundary again. I didn’t do that reestablishing in front of the other people. I would always have the alcoholic come into the bedroom where it’s a private place and remind them, “I asked you not to bring people home early in the morning and party because I have to go to work tomorrow and the kids are sleeping. They might wake up and they have to go to school.
There are a couple of tips for you on how you can set boundaries so that you won’t have to accept unacceptable behaviors.
If you want the best instructions on how to not allow an alcoholic to treat you like a doormat, get the tutorials on coping with an alcoholic.