separation due to husbands alcoholism

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-17-2007
separation due to husbands alcoholism
32
Mon, 08-20-2007 - 8:44am
Hi there,
I am writing this post because I am going through a really hard time and it is nice to hear about other peoples stories that I could relate to. I am hoping if I post I could hear some more stories and get some information.
I am married to a wonderful charismatic man who has a drinking problem. We have 2 children a 4 year old and a 1 year old. I never really notice his problem till I became pregnant with our first child and it was a rude awakening that my husband could not be any support for me because he was always going out with his friends drinking. My husband doesn't have a problem where he is hiding it or waking up in the morning and drinking so it was sort of hard for me to refer to him as alcoholic till now. He doesn't drink everyday, but when he drinks he can't stop. There have been so many nights when my husband sits in our living room listening to music and stareing at the walls because he would rather drink till he passes out then go to sleep. My husband will find every excuse he can to meet one of his friends at the local bars. If I don't get a babysitter on the weekend I can just assume at some point in the night he is going to tell me he has to go meet someone at the bar. When I was pregnant with our second child he was out all the time till 3 or 4 am and I would just lie in bed and cry. When I had our second child it was on a friday so my husband was never at the hospital with me, he was out with friends both nights and and recovering during the day. months after I had the baby we tried to go out to one of our favorite bars when he let me know he wasn't allowed back in because he and his friends got kicked out while I was in the hospital and our first child was with my mother. It has been the craziest life when he tells me he is going to do an errand anytime after 7 I always have to worry about when he will really be home, because there is always someone he has to meet for a drink. This has been going on for so long. My final breaking point was last thursday. I was in bed very sick and my husband was out picking up take out (at a place that is walking distance from our house and has a bar) He was gone for 2 hours while I had to deal with my kids. Then the following night he went to one of our couple friends houses and passed out so he never made it home. The wife of the couple is my good friend so she called me to tell me, if it wasn't for her I wouldn't have known where my husband was all night. It is all just so hurtful, I spend too many nights laying in bed crying wondering where my husband is. We had a family vacation planned to leave yesterday sunday and I backed out. I have had enough. I did not go and also told him I want to seperate. He then just went nuts telling me it is all my fault because I don't do anything. And I am breaking up my family and it is my fault because of my incompetence.. which just doesn't make sense. Anyway, in his eyes he thinks it is all my fault. I have decided that I have to do this now before the kids are even older because it is only getting worse. I love my husband so much and he is a wonderful dad and a very loving husband when he is in his right mind but right now with this problem it just isn't working. This is the hardest thing I have ever had to do, but I think I have to. I am hoping that he will decide to stop drinking and if that is the case I will support him however I can. Anyway, I read in a couple of post people saying that there spouses or family members blamed them, is this a normal reaction. Is anyone else going through a similiar situation. I am having such a hard time right now, part of me wants to just forget it and live with this because I don't want to break up my family. Although I know I have to do this! I would love to hear your stories. Sorry this is so long! :-)



Lilypie Baby Ticker
iVillage Member
Registered: 08-02-2007
Wed, 08-22-2007 - 1:41pm

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Again, I have said those same exact words! It is eerie, yet comforting, to know how universal some of these feelings are.

I do realize, however, that the drinking doesn't mean he doesn't love us. He loves us dearly and will always say that he chooses us over the beer. He is not drinking to have fun or to get away from family life - he does it because it is a compulsion and an addiction. He admitted to me last week that he doesn't even enjoy it - he is a solitary drinker, not out with buddies or in a bar. It is so, so hard to understand.

-Sarha

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-21-2007
Wed, 08-22-2007 - 2:14pm
It is so nice to hear I am not alone... although I am sure noone wants to be in this place, I am so glad I found this board, just so I don't feel alone in this!
iVillage Member
Registered: 08-21-2007
Wed, 08-22-2007 - 2:16pm
Oh my goodness you have been through so much! Good for you that you got yourself out of that. Keep up the good work!
iVillage Member
Registered: 08-21-2007
Wed, 08-22-2007 - 2:26pm
I am so glad I get every perspective. I am going to go to Alanon tonight and get on the right path. I also see what you are saying and yes I am in a fed up mode right now and You are right that 1 year is not alot of time to wait when deciding the fate of my whole family.. although I have to know that my husband is going to make an effort to quit for me to continue with this and I really don't know if he is there. We are not talking at the moment because I want to take the opportunity to get info here, go to alanon and learn about my part in this. I so thankful, that you are giving me this advice, you are right.. I want my family to stay together, I just it to be a respectful one. So hopefully He will make that effort to quit, its so hard for me to think that he will though seeing that the last time I spoke or saw him he was so angry it was crazy how angry he was at me and telling me it was all my fault.. "I don't do anything" I am a stay at home mom to a extremely active 1 year old and my daughter who just turned 4... anyway he was telling me "my incompetence is the reason for all my problems and the reason he drinks" I really have learned so much from this board.. it is amazing how many of us have basically the same story! Thank you again and again!
iVillage Member
Registered: 04-15-2004
Wed, 08-22-2007 - 2:40pm

Just a little "advice"...do not hang your hat on any result in his control. It will only lead to resentments. You need to leave him and the result in God's hands. Just take care of yourself and the alanon choice I believe will help you to do that - the blinders will be peeled away. Another little reminder...do not listen to anything he says when he attempts to blame you or say bad things about you. You are a wonderful person and mother, he does love you and he knows these things too... its his disease talking...the whole thing about providing him a reason to drink, does not only include his delusions that you have some how wronged him or have given him a reason to drink, but it goes much deeper than that - in that often, the part in those dialogues that gives him a reason to drink even more is the shame he experiences regarding how he is treating you and things he has said.

Once you have a little foot hold in alanon, I would suggest something which was suggested to me by my sponsor - its a little hard at first, but it was a pivotal piece in my recovery: Go (ideally with another alanon/sponsor) to some open AA speaker meetings. There you will begin to see the other side of the picture (the disease) that is where you may find compassion which you likely do not have now - I certainly did not.

Take what you like, leave the rest...

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-02-2007
Fri, 08-24-2007 - 12:09am

Your husband's reaction is the normal reaction of an addict. I know from experience. When I read what you wrote I started crying because the similarities were uncanny. The memories flooded back. I can feel your hurt and I am so sorry. I know it is hard to be so strong expecially when your children are so young, but that was what made me stronger and able to do what you are doing. Your husband will either straighten up or he won't. Either way, it is for the best what you are doing now. If he gets better perhaps you can work things out. I promise you if he does, he will see things clearly and will stop blaming you. I promise!!!! If he doesn't straighten up, then you are better off and the damage to you and your family is lessened. Either way, your children will be better for it. You probably feel guilty because of the "marriage vow," for better or worse. This is "worse" isn't it? Yes, it is, but you know if he was in his right mind, he would want you to take care of the children both you and he made together because they are defenseless. It's not like you are choosing them over him; or as if the thought of living without him sounds so much more appealing to you. He would know you don't want to be without him, but you cannot be because you have to take care of the family both you and he created. Perhaps if you did not have the children, you could stand by him and try to hold his hand through this, but right now you have to concentrate on those kids and he just has to understand that. Even if he doesn't, he's going to have to hit rock bottom to get better. That's just how it is.

I hope I didn't sound preachy. When I read what you wrote my heart broke. The pain I had left behind just all came back. I wish I could give you a hug.

Jody

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iVillage Member
Registered: 08-17-2007
Fri, 08-24-2007 - 11:39am
Hi Jody,
wondering how did your situation turn out? Your user name is hapullymareed.. is that to the husband you were refering to or a new one?
The timeing of your post is crazy. This morning was the first time in 6 days that I have spoken to my husband. I wanted to get some information and start working on myself before I had anything to say to him.. so today when I stood my ground on the phone my husband again started with the blaming.. but today I didn't listen, I just said you blaming me is just your disease... blah blah blah (a bit nerdy, but at least I didn't have to listen to him continue to list all the things I do wrong), anyway when he realized I wansn't cracking, he said "you said I have this disease, isn't that a sickness. You took a vow in sickness and in health and now you just leave me because of it instead of helping me get out of it?" I can't help but think he has a point and I don't want to enable him anymore, but if he chooses to quit do I stand by him then, even though he may fail a few times. I really love my husband, and I want what is best for my family. I hope that we can get this sorted out.. and I don't want to make the wrong move? I am sorry, I sound so needy.. this whole board just seems to know alot more than I do! Thank you so much for your help!



Lilypie Baby Ticker
iVillage Member
Registered: 08-02-2007
Fri, 08-24-2007 - 9:47pm

I am still with the same husband and VERY happily married. We made it through!!! AFTER being separated for 18 months and him having to get his s**t together while I went through an entire pregnancy alone, gave birth completely alone (not one single family member there), took care of our 18-month-old at the same time and worked full-time.

He was blaming me the entire time too, UNTIL he cleaned up. I told you if your husband was seeing things clearly he would realize you are doing the right thing. I felt so guilty the whole time, like I wasn't keeping my marriage vows either. The thing is this - Is your husband honoring you, cherishing you, forsaking all others (that includes all other things - that means alcohol!!!)? It certainly doesn't look like it. You can't play into his arguing. When he starts in, just say, "Look, I can't do this, I have to take care of YOUR children right now. I'm doing my job and YOUR job of parenting them, so I don't really have time to play the blame game. If you want to argue, I just don't have the energy for that." Keep telling him you love him. If you are still open to a relationship if he wants to change, and it seems like you are, then let him know that, but just keep telling him that you both created these children and they CAN'T take care of themselves. Both of you are adults, the kids don't have a choice about this situation, so the one of you who is sober has to take responsibility for them and if he wants to call that abandoning him then he can, but you call it doing the best thing you could ever do for him, and for HIS kids. They need stability.

I guess I am kind of being pushy here, and I know you are probably thinking it's easy for me to say it, but I really have been there. Everyone would tell me things like, "You just need to cut your loses. You are still so young and can marry again." I didn't want to give up on my husband. When we separated it had been very scary. I had even gone ahead and gotten a restraining order and filed for legal separation and full custody of my daughter. We still talked to each other almost every single day for the next 18 months. My daughter had been 9 months old when we separated and when we reconciled she was 2 and my son was 8 months old. I found out I was pregnant the month after I moved out of our house. He was so wigged out all the time, he even asked me whose baby I was pregnant with and who I had been sleeping with and weird questions like that. He just was reaching for any excuse to believe that I was leaving him for some other reason than because of his addiction. I know you are hurting, but you just have to think of it sometimes like your husband is possessed or something. He's not himself. That doesn't mean you should take it. It just makes it a little easier to take some of the hurt. Just a little though.

I hope maybe some of this has helped. You can write anytime.

Jody

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iVillage Member
Registered: 09-11-2004
Sat, 08-25-2007 - 10:43am

Do not let him pull that sickness and health crud!! IF he were trying to arrest the disease by not drinking, getting therapy or going to a program or reading and abiding by Rational Recovery, THEN you could say...well...okay I will try.


YOU ALONE ARE NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR THE STATE OF YOUR MARRIAGE--- HE MUST ACCEPT RESPONSIBILITY FOR HIS ACTIONS.

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iVillage Member
Registered: 08-25-2007
Sat, 08-25-2007 - 11:19am
I feel for you, I am at the same place that you are right now minus the kids. It is hard but we will get through it and be stronger for it. Blessings to you and your children.