My Boyfriend Must Get Sober Or We Are Finished

Banner 37 Audio LessonsJC: This article was submitted by one of our readers who is having problems with her boyfriend. Lauren says, “He needs to be sober and every article on this site says not to try and force that, but I have to.” Additionally she says, “I am sticking to my guns that he has to be sober or I won’t live here anymore. Why is this discouraged on this site? Whats the best course of action here…with the goal being his sobriety!”

Lauren, we are here to help you learn how to live with and love an alcoholic, not to discourage you from trying to aid in him getting sober. One of the main goals of this website is to expose the common characteristics found in alcoholics.  Please click on the following links to find some information that can help become happier and healthier while living with an alcoholic.

Guest Post By: Lauren

A Beautiful Sunset On Panama City BeachI started dating my boyfriend a year and a half ago. We were 24 and 29. We had a wonderful first year together. We’d drink, cook, make love. We then moved into a new apartment which was traumatic for him because he never had a stable home and the one he was leaving behind was the closest thing to. So in the 6 months that we’ve been at the new place, he’s been angry, mean, insulting–downright cruel. I am nothing but good to him, I know its not true, I know he doesn’t mean it.

Last month I moved in with my parents for a week, which resulted in him begging for me to come home and promising to get sober in order to make things work and to put a stop to the abuse he’d been inflicting on me. I moved home, we had a beautiful week together, catching up on cuddling and sex. But then last night he tells me that I am controlling, that I remind him of a mother figure, that he’s going to start drinking again and that I misinterpreted his promise to quit forever. That he just meant for a month. My options are to move home again or stay here and put up with the abuse.

I am torn because I don’t want to abandon him but I also can’t live like this. Also, regardless if I move home or not, I will still be in a relationship with him because I love him so much. Just don’t know what to do! He needs to be sober and every article on this site says not to try and force that, but I have to.

I am sticking to my guns that he has to be sober or I won’t live here anymore. Why is this discouraged on this site? Whats the best course of action here…with the goal being his sobriety.

Please feel free to leave a comment below.

45 comments to My Boyfriend Must Get Sober Or We Are Finished

  • Kelly

    Leave now. It only gets worst. Never better. It’s going to be hard because you still love him, however, you must love yourself more. The abuse will not end. Speaking from experience.

  • Nance

    As young as you are, and since it sounds like you have not had children together, perhaps you could consider dating men who don’t drink?
    I still love the man I love…but he can not live with me. I am too old to have children and do not want marriage.
    If so, I would seriously have to go through the grief of letting go of him totally and looking for a healthier partner.
    You are in for a wild ride…and only he can want to quit for him because he wants to for him. It is really hard for you both! And most likely nothing anyone says will stop you wanting to be with him unless and until you are so fed up and ready or meet someone else who is healthier and you fall for.

    Just my opinions. Take what you like – and leave the rest.

  • Nance

    PS It has been my experience no matter how much the alcoholic loves you—he, or she, will love alcohol more.
    It will win every time unless he or she is working a very stringent recovery program and want sobriety with all their heart.
    For me, the alcohol often felt like he was sneaking around seeing a woman….but when I used to go through the drama of chasing him down he would be not be with a woman, but spending his time and energy on beer.

  • Mariltn

    Sorry I went though ten years of alcohol abuse and it’s do true it doesn’t get better it gets worse I still live my x husband after two years of being divorce
    They manipulate you they lie they cheat I know it’s hard but get out now because they don’t change they promise they will but they can’t it’it the best 5hing I done was got out yeah I think about him all the time and get very angry with myself with what he put me though
    It’s mental tor tore what they do to you they all got the same pattern so hey get out while you can

  • Laurie

    I have to disagree with Kelly everyones situation is different and isnt one of the reasons we come online to gain support because we are always told to leave.
    Is it possible to have a relationship wit an active alcoholic? Yes it is.
    We cant force people to recover by giving ultimatums that is our unhealthy behavior of trying to manipulate the situation. Many may not see it that way but honestly it is and it never works. Alcoholics have to want to get sober for themselves. We can not fix or control another person we can only fix and control ourselves as we are probably sick too. I would suggest you seek an Al-Anon support group to gain a better knowledge of the disease so that you can understand your loved one better. Also gain tools to use. Detach with love, there is an article on this site about it. Set healthy personal boundaries, these are not to punish the alcoholic and they cant be broken by others either. We set boundaries for ourselves, its a line in the sand that we wont cross and its to protect us. Understanding the difference between enabling and helping. Enabling is the art of literally loving the alcoholic to death. There is an article on this site about that too, please read. You didnt cause it, you cant control it and you cant cure it. There is no known cure for alcoholism it does get worse without help. Its extremely rare for an alcoholic to reach long periods of sobriety on their own as its no longer a choice to drink. It stops becoming a choice when the alcoholic can no longer control their intake. On the majority of JC’s articles it refers to Al-Anon, he has even provided links. Go get support for yourself. You are important and you matter. Put yourself at the top of your priorities and start loving and respecting yourself. I wish you well on your journey.

    Source – member of Al-Anon and owner of private 24/7 online support group for anyone affected by someone elses addiction. Addict/Alcoholic but sober 11 yrs. soon to be ex wife to an addict.

  • Sheila

    You sound confused. This is what happens when we lower our boundaries prematurely. Alcoholics are masters of creating confusion. Keep the pants zipped up until marriage and it all is so much simpler…believe me!
    Face it ..he’s using you, dear.

    Teachers don’t give the student an A on the promise that they will study.
    We (and he) have to do right first, then get the reward.

    You deserve to be treated with respect..and not have your kind heart taken advantage of.
    You might benefit from the famous Boundaries book.

    He’ll be ok without you. You are allowed to break up with him if you want to.

    Stay firm and stand your ground…and it might be a sound idea to go back to your parents until you are on your own or married to a reliable sober man.

    Wishing all the best and courage to stay strong and stand your ground.

  • Margie

    Girl….the hardest thing you will ever do but You have to leave and don’t back down. It is true and it will only get worse. I was with someone for four years who drank every day. I broke up with him four times and it was always the same. I loved him and still do very much but by the time it was over he had completely broken me. It has been almost a year and the emotional abuse I went through has been a tough tough road to come back from. In the end as hard as I tried I could not help him because he didn’t want the help. The best you can do now is
    love yourself and love him from afar and pray for him. Stay strong!

  • Zita

    Lauren…….run as fast as you can. It will not get better unless he goes to rehab or AA. Let your head rule, not your heart. You will be in for
    a life of misery otherwise.

  • I feel for you and after 26 years of beakups and back together, I see the man I love now as a platonic supportive friend. He has been there for me through my own current health issues. I love him, but see in the times apart that he won’t admit to being an alcoholic still. He limits himself to 2 big cans of beer when he is with me, but at my own home. If I see that level increasing and he gets drunk, I won’t tolerate it or see him. I think that is clear but unspoken. I have learned to zip my lip and know on his own he drinks much more. Not my problem and I try to practice detaching from focusing on his drinking. I feel sad for him. My therapist had said he is sick and why can’t I just accept that. See him if I wish once a month platonically. Well I see him more but have not crossed the line past friends. He has also had sexual dysfunction from age bloom pressure meds and yes drinking. I can choose to be his friend or not. After so long for now I am comfortable with this. Yes I want more but it will not be with him. Not with his drinking. He is probably relocating, laid off 3 yrs ago and that made his drinking worse. I wanted a family so much but it didn’t happen. Looking back at his screwed up childhood and commitment issues included with the bad bouts of drunkenness, I am glad I moved out and did not marry or have children with this man. I look at his alcoholic family members and feel happy that Ivfid not raise children in this lifestyle. You need to do what is best for you. I don’t know if I feel strong or weak with going back and forth with him. But he is a very good caring man and I am glad we met. But wish my story had been different. We have to make our own choices and mistakes because it is our life. Good luck.

  • Kate

    Run!!! I’m 40 and have 2 children with a charming, handsome, intelligent, selfish, lazy, lying, idiot. He used to drink too much on a regular basis but with each difficulty life has thrown at him he has got further entrenched in a self destructive lifestyle which includes smoking 30+ cigarettes a day, wine for breakfast and drink driving (with or without the kids in the car).

    If I could Wind back the clock I would tell myself that I deserved to spend my life with someone who I could respect and who would support me instead of a man who would steal, lie and let me down every day of what was becoming a miserable existance. I have just asked him to move out but haven’t told the children yet. I feel free but know that I have lots of tough times ahead as he is furiously angry with me.

    You sound like a very nice selfless person which I am often told I am. We are not a good combination with an alcoholic as they get away with continuing the self destruction and cruelty to those around and this makes them get worse and worse. Leave him to someone thick skinned to deal with and you will be doing him and yourself a favour.

    Good luck whatever you choose to do.

  • Bill

    Lauren, many people are able to stay in relationships with alcoholics. You will find a lot of people doing so in Al-anon meetings. Relationships take a lot of work even when alcoholism isn’t a factor. The one thing you must guard against is losing your “own” happiness, peace of mind and positive outlook on life because of the actions of your boyfriend.

    One of the things I like about the sharing on this website is people are honest. You don’t get a bunch of sugar coated stuff here. A lot of the comments on this site are from people who have many emotional scars as a result from enduring being in relationships with alcoholics.

    Yes, it’s OK to try and help your boyfriend get sober. Just make sure that you don’t lose yourself in the process.

  • Jen

    Lauren, it only takes time for a broken heart to heal. You are young. You might consider making a commitment to yourself to stay in the relationship for another six months, if nothing changes, get out. During that six months put money away and come up with a plan for moving on if nothing changes. You don’t have to share with your boyfriend that you are giving him a six month period to get his SH** together. Just keep it to yourself. I assure you that your heart will heal and there will be another guy right behind this one if things don’t work out.

  • Jule

    Say good bye while it is relatively easy. You should not sentence yourself to be the blame for his past life or his present life. Notice he got you back by lying.. If you think his behavior is normal or acceptable it is important for you to talk with someone about this. You deserve more.than a compromised life.

  • Connie

    Run as fast as you can away. I have been with my alcoholic for 32 years & it gets worse & worse. I only survived with Alanon & sites like this, but its just survival. The worst part is that somehow the longer you stay the more attached you become & the harder it is to get out. I stayed because I have been clean & sober myself for 37 years & I understand that side of it. I believed he would get sober again (he had been sober 11 years & went out 21 years ago) & we would get back to our sober life together. I’ve gone though every type of abuse there is, left & not left, lying, cheating & every type of despicable behavior invented. I actually filed for divorce when I was 40 & we got back together & today I am 61 & have wasted my entire life learning to cope with his abuse. Now he tells me he is in love with a 20 year old hooker who is in jail. OMG. Just one more ploy to inflict hurt. You deserve a mutually caring relationship with someone. I wish when I filed for divorce I would’ve followed through. I wish when he started drinking again I would’ve left. Hindsight is 20/20. If you can get away now, do it. Why would you want to spend your life trying to cope with the mean things someone bestows on you just for his own amusement or sickness or whatever the case may be. Would you live with a schizophrenic person for a life mate? That’s what’s going to happen. Either he’ll die, be incarcerated in jail/prison, a nut house, or hospital. If he’s lucky he will die. Alcoholism leads to just that. No other choices. Death, insanity/wet brain, or sober. Most do not stay sober even when they try. AA meetings are filled with retreads who never make it. The statistics are crazy. Its like something like 80% plus people do not stay sober. Almost no one is sober in meetings or anywhere else as long as even I have been sober. Somewhere you come to the point you don’t care anymore. Then it happens so fast. Its been 32 years already. We should be retiring & relaxing, vacationing, going places together & doing stuff, but now the new thing is a 20 year old hooker. Like she’s interested in him other than money LOL. I know, everyone, including me knows they would leave if that happened to them, well don’t bet on it. You think you have a choice, but you end up just as addicted to him & he is his booze/drugs & now, who cares? I do my life & have fulfilling friends & things to do & work, but I would’ve rather had a real mate to share life with rather than the man/child I settle for. I wish someone would’ve told me when I was 29 when I got with him. These things are not new or unique. My son has not been to my home in 10 years. He hates him. When my son comes to town we meet elsewhere. If you can get out, get out now. Have a good wholesome life. If you can’t get out already, which kinda sounds like the case, go to Alanon without fail. I am praying for you.

  • Jane

    I have lived 24 years with an alcoholic. I didn’t recognize it at first due to his career and his being away so much of the time. We had children that are grown now. All I can say is run while you can. An alcoholic is the most selfish person you will ever come across.
    They will blame you for every slip up. They will affect your children in ways that you cannot see or imagine. They will use whatever crutch they can find to keep you there in their misery. They will lie, sneak, blame, beg, promise and on and on….but what they will never do is quit. Nothing matters to them except what they want and need. Yours will always be secondary to their needs and wants. I have lived a good life regardless of my spouse…but that was only because I made it happen. At some point you will tire and there will be no love, just disgust and disappointment.

  • Kris

    Lauren please take to heart the things others have said. I married an alcoholic thinking he would stop drinking if he was happy. We were married for 13 years before I saw what it was doing to me! I loved him very much and when he was not drinking he was my best friend. He would go two or three weeks without drinking, but once he had that first drink he went until he passed out. He was always sorry, after. I finally had enough and left. That was twenty years ago. I have always loved him and hoped he had finally stopped drinking. Well he contacted me three years ago and we talked for 17 hours straight about the past,present and future. The things he told me about that happened those 20 years, I was shocked! Multiple jails, drugs,loss of business. He said he still loved me and missed our life together and he wanted to stop drinking and have his life back. He saw that he screwed his life up with drinking! Well that was three years ago and he moved in with me for two months,then decided we could not be together because he could not drink with me. His ex-girlfriend drank with him, so he went back to her and still drinking. I still love him to this day and think about him daily, I am afraid he will drink himself to death, I pray for him often but I have to love from afar and go on for myself! Take care and know we are all here for you.

  • K

    I was married for 13 years to an alcoholic. Took every ounce of strength to get out.. 5 years later I meet someone who I think we have. A future , my best friend the one I was waiting for.. Find out he has total addiction issues, we have been together for a year , love him , always will, I am trying to breakfast free, it’s hard because I am addicted to him or the behavior , it’s all I know.. I have ,learned so much during this year about myself . He does heave great qualities love being with him, when it’s really him sober, no xana,x, or alcohol. He has had a tough road. But what I know for sure there is nothing I can do for him nothing , he is the only one who can make his llife better . If you can walk away please do so.. Please life , your time , your life is precious. And happiness and peace you can only give to yourself Good luck God bless

  • This dude abandoned u already.
    Dont waste your life
    My husband lost his job . He was drunk
    Boo hoo poor childhood. He needs to grow up.
    I cannot pay my mortgage this month.
    I have,lost so much.
    Leave him. Walk away. Dont look back
    If he becomes a,sucess, someone will let you know
    And he will be waiting for you as he promised.
    Pray for him and go live a nice life
    Best wishes. Get off the merry go round

  • Paula

    hi Lauren,
    If you need to leave then you need to leave. Saying so to him as an ultimatum won’t end the way you hope it will. Even if he stops for a day or two unless he wants to stop and goes for his own reasons and gets help, then he is doing it for you, and for an alcoholic it’s not a big enough reason. It has to come from within him. Maybe you need to leave, and if so then you need to respect your own needs, maybe you can remain in each others lives, as long as he understands your boundaries….you need to lay down the law that are your boundaries. “I can’t be in a relationship with someone who has a drinking problem, because it is too destructive for me”

    The hardest thing about being in a relationship with an alcoholic, is trying to remain detached from what they are doing to themselves, and their disregard for how it effects the ones around them. It’s like watching someone you love cut themselves….but nothing you can do or say can make them stop. The only thing you can maintain, is that you love them, and they are worthy of your love and that that won’t change. That doesn’t mean you can live subjecting yourself to it on a daily basis. Understanding how that could be as good as it gets until they decide they can’t subject themselves to it any longer either, might be all there is. I feel your pain. I wish you all the strength you need to get through this.

  • Please read my post under why do alcoholics lie!!! Get out while you can!! My husband and I have been married a little over a year and we have a one year old!! It has been HELL!! If it makes you feel better I’m 33 and my husband is 53!!! Now, what does that tell you!! It will not get better!! Alcoholics are patient and will do what it takes to get what they want… If what they want is you and your rule is no drinking, believe they will play long enough to get you in concrete! Once they feel they gotcha! Whatch out because now they have to make up for lost drinking time and then some!! I can share a lot! I’m close in age with you and I must say thank God you haven’t put in 5, 10, or 15 years yet! I’m glad I’m on this site now because honestly… One year in this madness has been too long!!! I’m getting out you should too! We are worth more than they give us and all the apologies they have scripted for us.. Trust me I know what I’m talking about!! Thanks to this site and power of God above I am slowly getting my ducks in a row and I’m out of here whether he is in treatment again or not!!!! RUN!!

  • Connie


  • Carol

    My suggestion is that, if you love him, don’t think you can change him. Get yourself into an ALANON program. I stayed with my husband for 30 years, the first 20 years not knowing or understanding alcohol. Went into an Alanon program, and turned my thinking around. His life went into spiral, losing his job and his health. He’s not drinking now, but has no recovery. Difficult to deal with, and we really have not much of a life together anymore. The alcoholic will be controlling and selfish. If you stay, stand your ground or else leave him. Alanon was the best thing I ever did for myself, because I realized that I could not do a thing, nor was it my fault, that he was an alcoholic. I learned how to take care of myself, and let him do the same.

  • Tess

    Yeah. I can identify with you. I’m thinking of taking the ‘tough love’ slant. Some believe it really works.

    I have been to alanon meetings (highly recommended). They help you see it for what it is. You don’t have to agree with everything. You take what you want and leave the rest. This is about you. Not the alcoholic.

    I have given my partner chance after chance after chance. The goalposts change. The end result is always the same. I genuinely believe he wants to get sober. Yet his personality changes and i caught him drinking. He has lashed out at me a few times when he is out of it and then gets guilty when he sobers up.

    I planned a trip to paris in january. He wanted it. On the way to the airport got ‘you are too good for me’. Our great hol never happened. I did not speak to him for three weeks. He stopped drinking for two. So in some ways it can work, I do believe that. But do something really nice for you and above all never forget who you are. Never allow him to blame you for his drinking. They feel guilty about it and blaming you counteracts that guilt if you allow it. You don’t force the alcohol down their neck!

    The decision to stop drinking and be free is a decision they have to make for themselves. You don’t come into it.

    I think at least take a break. Is there anywhere you can go for a few weeks, make him think your gone and see if anything changes.

    Btw, my partner drinking all the time now. hes not there. It owns him.

    It does hurt but with alanon you learn that there is nothing you can do. The only person you can control in all of this is yourself.

    Try mealanie beatty ‘codependent no more’. And attend those meetings. Seriously your life may depend on it.

    Take care of yourself x

  • Ann

    Hi Lauren,
    So you love an alcoholic. It can be difficult. However if you love him and want to stay with him, you need to get to a place of acceptance. Accept him for who he is. Also there is detachment. You need to learn to detach from all that is associated with the disease of alcoholism. You can learn how to do that in Alanon meetings, reading Alanon literature and turning you life and will over to God. You can also get a sponsor in your Alanon group. You will also get lots of love and support.
    An alcoholic or addict has to get to a place where he or she wants sobriety. You cannot force a person to seek sobriety. Force may make things worst. Take your focus off the alcoholic. Focus on yourself. enjoy your work, family, friends, exercise, have hobbies and pray. NO ONE SHOULD TELL ANYONE WHAT TO DO IN AN ALCOHOLIC RELATIONSHIP. However, I would like you to be aware that, he is only your boyfriend. You are not married to this man and hence there is no lifetime commitment. Therefore, you will not don anything wrong if you left the relationship.

  • Tony

    I learned my lesson through being married to someone who slowly turned into an addict. As I look back on all of the late nights I spent highly upset, mostly because she was out on the town until the wee hours of the morning (sometimes not coming home at all), I will never, ever again try to stay with someone who has no regard for me or the relationship, NEVER AGAIN…So as so many have expressed here, you can go to Al-non and learn how to live with your partner constantly putting you second and third in relation to his addiction and addict friends or get out.

    There is a third choice that I believe is the most important, establish a relationship with God and find strength, love and direction from Him in your life. This third choice would be my first choice weather I decided to stay with an alcoholic or leave. Why? Because God will never leave you, reject you or abandon you. He will be your refuge in times of trouble, your guide when you don’t know where to go, your comfort during the most difficult times in life, your lover, your best friend, your joy, your peace, hope and much, much more…

    I do like the plan that JEN offered in one of the comments above…The two things I would add are God and Al-anon to the plan.

  • Jill

    In the beginning where, you are now, our insight and intuition is clearer and speaks pretty lound and clear. If we dont listen something happens the more intertwined we get in to the mental gymnastics of the alcoholic and we start breaking down… ever so slightly. Like someone said in an above comment…” the alcoholic/addict has all the time in the world”.
    I am a living testimony of this. It wasnt until I started feeling somewhat crazy bue to the lies and manipulation that I found an alanon group which gave me a life line and chose to take my power back. I realized I will not be someone doormat I deserve love and respect all the time in a healthy relationship. I simple pulled up my bootstraps and said to him… “I am in a 12step program and I now realize I can’t be in a relationship with anyone who in an alcoholic who isnt ACTIVELY working their own program” right there and the I let him go and took me… the happy me, back.

  • To Tony
    Amen!! If it wasn’t for The Lord above giving me strength during the times I didn’t know where my husband was or the countless nights of waiting up for him to come home but never would show. Only God could can give you peace when your heart is breaking and racing all at the same time. I know if it wasn’t for Gods grace and mercy I would have continued to be sick with co-dependency emotions. I’m not 100% out of the woods yet! but I am trusting in God to turn all the evil and bad around for my Good! That is His word!

  • C

    I remember how I was when I met my alcoholic bf – happy, lots of friends, healthy, lots of energy.

    In time, energy was gone, health was faltering, friends started asking questions about his drinking and so on. It gets worse if you stay with an alcoholic. They have no idea how their drinking affects those around them. They can’t sleep normal hours, so your health will suffer. Some count calories, so they drink instead of eat their meals. They don’t want you telling anyone, so they threaten you not to divulge any information about them to their family or friends.

    There are so many wonderful men in this world – please, let this one go and give yourself a chance for real happiness. Best wishes.

  • AM

    Alcoholics are masters of manipulation. They lie, are selfish, blame everyone else for their problems, have a different view from the rest of the world. And they like to hold people in emotional captivity.They truly care about no one but themselves. Their behavior is very passive aggressive. They are leeches and will suck the kind hearted, caring souls who they are involved with dry. What is alcohol ? It is a drying agent. It dries out organs, the body and the brain. They think differently if at all. They may try to pretend they are altruistic but they aren’t …..they lack humility and modesty. They talk about themselves ad nauseam to whomever will listen to them. They will steal from their own father. (like getting the deed to a house).
    They are money hungry…. will lie about being disabled when they in fact aren’t. They make everyone at work mad and eventually don’t work there anymore. They hold hostages and are only capable of love/hate relationships. This person is a man…. may sound like someone you know. His real name is….. Run fast.

  • Marilyn

    Am everything you just said there is so very true
    Anybody who involve with a alcoholic should run fast you can’t help them look after yourself
    There first love is there al ohol not you

  • Hey Lauren, you mentioned that you love this guy. If you didn’t you would be gone. I am an alcoholic who is sober and know many who are sober. They are wonderful people. When in the clutches of their addiction they can be all the negative things mentioned in the other posts, but are generally good people when sober. Again, you wouldn’t be still around if that wasn’t true. Clearly the problem is alcohol. If an alcoholic doesn’t want to get sober, get ready to continue with your current experience. If he is truly interested in getting sober, he needs to get help. I don’t know anyone (who is an alcoholic) who just quits for good without support. Here’s some links that may really help you. Pay particular attention to the one called “10 things to Stop doing if your Love an Alcoholic”. Good luck! Sober Coach Dave

  • Jenn

    This was my life for two and a half years. It ended just over a year ago, but I still struggle with the guilt. Why guilt? Because so many people – including my parents (who no longer speak to me because of the ending of my relationship w/ an alcoholic.. they “weren’t convinced” he was one) – told me that I was the problem. That if I couldn’t accept him for who he is, then I’m the problem.

    I love(d) him dearly. But he drank every single night. Most nights, at home and alone in the garage. A couple nights a week at home with a friend or two in the garage. He’d finish most of a handle of hard alcohol in about 3 days.

    He blamed everything on me… or anything BUT the alcohol. Including his health issues – the intense stomach pains, the daily diarrhea, the poor sleep, the vertigo, the ED, the low blood sugar, etc. He would say that he’d “do ANYTHING” to not deal with those things… but if it was even suggested that the drinking might be contributing, he’d snap “it’s NOT THE ALCOHOL!”

    I tried so hard to understand, to be compassionate. But my feelings weren’t important. My love wasn’t enough. The bottle won. He left me. He didn’t want help. He didn’t want support. He didn’t have a problem.

    And still, more than a year later, I am struggling to understand. Praying daily for him. He is a good man. I miss him so much – the sober him.

  • Have you tried going to AlAnon? I know a lot of folks are staying RUN and LEAVE him. Do what your heart is telling you to do. There are folks who get sober and need time to adjust to life and learn how to be sober, one day at a time. Its hard when its YOUR relationship and if you do LOVE them, its even more difficult. Trust your gut – stay with your parents until he’s had some good sober time and is running some sort of a program. You need to see ACTION not just hear his words – it will work out the way it supposed to – and most importantly be true to yourself.
    Hang in there! Email me anytime.

  • Lori

    I could re-write Jenn’s story.
    I am blamed for everything. He drinks every single night. a 6-pack mon-thur is common, then the weekends are a free for all.
    He has health issues….Liver and Kidney tests are barely in range. He has Metabolic syndrome – he has high triglycerides and low HDL and is pre-diabetic. BUT – those tests showed that because he ate a donut the day before he fasted. OMG – I am serious – that was his excuse! IT certainly isn’t from his drinking, because he doesn’t have a problem. Our divorce has been going on for well over a year and his kids have no respect for him because he is a loser – but he doesn’t see it. People whisper behind his back that he is a drunk – I know, I’ve seen and heard it. But – to him it is a joke. He finds it funny when people go right up to him and tell him he is an alcoholic.
    Like the first poster said – it only gets worse…..

  • Mark

    My teenage daughter was getting into all sorts of trouble, and finally left us and moved in with boyfriend. I stopped having contact with her, and my wife of 23 years resented my abandonment. Until then, she was the perfect wife. Eventually, my daughter and I reconciled, and our relationship is great. My wife’s resentment, however, continued. I found out six months ago that she had been having an affair with my neighbor for over 2 years. He was a person I tolerated, and my daughters despised. He was always over our house, and flirting with my wife. I trusted her completely, and never saw the connection. On Valentines night, i caught her chatting with him on the phone at 1AM. I checked phone records and discovered their constant communication and 1000’s of chats. After lots of screaming, I left, but contacted her best friend. My wife admitted to her that she had been drinking alot over the past 3 years, often having drinks in the morning and throughout the day. I saw a change in my wife, but never knew of the daily drinking. My wife’s friend took her to an AA meeting that night, and my wife hasn’t had a drink since. My daughters and I attended Al-anon in the beginning, and it helped tremendously. It helped us understand how this monster invaded my wife. The lying, cheating, selfishness… all stemmed from drinking. Although the massive hurt of her affair is still lingers, and my daughters barely speak with her, AA has helped her become the person I married. Without AA, Alanon, and God’s help, I’d be long gone.

  • Bill

    Mark, I cannot begin to imagine the hurt you have endured. I do understand the hope you have in AA, Al-anon and God. I know that if I didn’t have all three working in my life, I’d be a total wreck, especially if I didn’t have the strength God provides.

    Your story is sad, but has somewhat of a good twist, your wife turned to a better way of living. This is good news that people on this site don’t post very often. Perhaps your story will encourage someone to keep hoping that things will change.

  • Lori

    Mark – your story resonates with my life. My husband is and alcoholic, a liar, a cheat. My son found his phone line and we are now divorcing. The only difference is your wife realized she had a problem and her family obviously meant more to her than her alcohol. My stbx on the other hand is glad I have left because all I did was hold him back. I spent all his money (which I am very frugal) and has told me he will be rich when I am out of the picture. Then just the other day he was sobbing about how poor he will be after the divorce. Yep – he finally figured that one out because I am taking MORE than half of our assets thanks to his alcoholic cheating ass. Too bad for him. The way he treated me the past 5 years is intollerable. I am a great person who didn’t deserve this – and I hope he pays in more ways than financial hardship. I pray often for pancreatitis, chirrosis, DWI – anything that will WAKE HIM UP. It hasn’t happened and i’m tired of waiting around for him to get his *%#( together.
    Mark – I envy you. I would give anything in the world to get my husband back. I loved him more than anyone can imagine, but obviously it wasn’t good enough.

  • K

    AM ,
    I feel every word you have stated, it’s helped me today to read the post to snap out of trying to fix and help my boyfriend ex whatever he is but his name is true run fast …
    Thank you

  • AM

    I love this person. However, when someone cuts you out of their life after nearly eight years…. after all I did to help him and his family…..BIZARRE! Received a disability award from the VA….. surely not disabled. This person doesn’t need me as an ATM machine anymore. People have short memories. My sister said his mistress is the bottle. He alienates the neighbors etc….. still love him even though he turned my world upside down. Maybe he did me a favor but it hurts. I need to have respect for myself. I am not going to keep ringing a phone that I know he wont answer . or go and try to make things better, how do I know what frame of mind he is in? I pray continuously for him and for myself. In the meantime, trying to go on with my life without him…AND I WILL. But I will never forget because I loved unconditionally. How dare he try to ruin my life and those of others around him. Get your act together MAN!

  • K

    Thank you for sharing. It’s so mind blowing to me the lives that are ruined . Importantly we stay focus on our own lives and pray for the ones we love . I am still trying to break away from my boyfriend , promise after promise all broken of course , I have gone above and beyond for this man.. He gets it, but still won’t take next step to get the help he knows he needs . Breaks my heart. I can not break my own heart anymore and doing my very best to try to get going. God bless

  • kat

    I left a man who admits he’s alcoholic he wears it like a badge and uses it to explain his selfish behaviour ,, he stopped drinking for two yrs in which he had three slips ..he was the same sober as he was when he drank life was all about him .he lied and I know of one time he cheated but I bet there have been lots more women ,, he’s in my thoughts every day but my life is better without his madness.. im not over him but im away from him and have a different life ,, I go on holiday I go for nights out with my friends and im in a relationship with a nice normal guy ,, I tried for 18 years to make things work but its like swimming against the tide with alcoholic’s .. I wish all you people including myself the peace and happiness we deserve ,,, leave the addicts to sort there own lives out ..

  • Marilyn

    Kat I know exactly were you are coming from I was in the same situation as you
    I haven’t got over my x alcoholic husband after two years being away from hI’m
    There isn’t a day that don’t go by I don’t think about him and what he put us though
    There liers manipulating cheats abusive all they do is blame
    But my life is better now it’s like mental torcher what they do to you all I can say every alcoholic lives in a pattern they use and abuse
    But I’m so glad I’m out of it

    There isn’t a day that do t go by that I don’t think about him

  • Deb

    I left a drug addict 10 years ago. Sometimes I felt bad because ‘we’ loved each other. I simply could not live with the ‘insanity’ (personality changes, disappearances (gone for days at a time) issues that continued. He remarried and I know he is still a drug addict. The other day I ran into him. I realized it was the best decision of my life.

    It is a Whole lot better to be single and live in peace, then to continue to be living in what that ‘was.’ Of course, I have no children, so I don’t have that complication. However, I would like to assure anyone considering whether you will regret leaving the alcoholic. You won’t. If you are like many folks, you may fantasize he is now different. Perhaps. Maybe. But is that not how you lived day to day and week to week before? Maybe he won’t drink today or maybe he won’t get high this weekend of Easter.

    Please be strong and know that you can have a better life.

  • Deb

    The MYSTERY. There is a Mystery about how some people are so charismatic. It has taken me years to try to understand this since so many drug addicts and alcoholics are incredibly charismatic people and I was so attracted to this side of them.

    This is my own personality flaw. You must realize you are lovable and wonderful just because you were created as you are. You do not need anyone to support you in your own self esteem.

    Most honest non alcoholics are not necessarily so charming. At this time I believe that this charm is developed as some by product which allows alcoholics and drug addicts to be what they are. Begin to realize the problem is within you. Look for what is REAL and learn to value what is REAL over that which makes you feel good.

    If something makes you feel good and you like this type of excitement, look inside your own self. It may seem cliche but if you are attracted to charm and charisma more then what is really present in someone its really YOU which has the issue. This you must realize to heal yourself. Then you come to a sudden realization that the MYSTERY of alcoholics and drug addicts is really a Mystery of studying yourself.

  • Husband missed his dui pre trial today… So… Probably a warrant for him now…. His car was vandalized in front of a friends house last night… Now he is mad at me I mean hates me for some reason…I Came home with groceries and long story short he ended up cussing me out in front of his friend his friends son and our 14 month old for no reason… Called me an antagonist? All I did was ask a question… I’m leaving him tomorrow. I’m really tired and exhausted!! He makes me feel like I’m the reason his life is falling apart. I keep praying for a way out and strength to endure the madness but it’s too much for me now. He is breaking me down…

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