The horrible guilt

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-24-2006
The horrible guilt
Thu, 08-23-2007 - 2:48pm

I've posted quite a bit recently. My meltdown and my determination to tell him to go the next time things come to a head with us.

But in ther interm I'm trying hard to cope and survive. My problem is the guilt. Wondering why he doesn't understand the problem? Why he can't see what he's doing?? why, why, why!!!! I know from reading these posts that its typical for the addicted spouse to blame others for everything but how do you get to the point where you quit blaming yourself too.

My H tells me that one of the reasons he drinks (EVERDAY) is because he is so unhappy at home. He says I don't talk to him, I never smile, I don't even look at him and it makes him feel worthless and depressed. And he's RIGHT I do those things.. So is it MY fault not just that he drinks but because our marriage is horrible? I mentioned that I've been working a lot (one reason is that he spends almost 1/2 his paycheck on alcohol each month) so we are always behind. In the past 10 days I have worked (between 3 jobs) 127 hours. Last night was the first night I hadn't worked a 2nd job in ages. I was tired, I am tired still. Anyway, I made dinner, did stuff at the house.. my H who took the day off sick (because he was tired!! what a slap in the face that is) didn't do anything all day. He did go to the bar though.. anyway, he falls asleep at 7:30 and at 9:30 goes to bed while i continue to clean the house etc. At midnight I go to bed. He wakes up and wants sex.. he wants me to rub his back, wants me to inititate everything while he lies there as usual. I said, I'm sorry, I'm really tired right now. He flipped out. I'm never nice to him anymore, I make him feel awful, I don't want him.. just on and on. I said honestly, even if things were fabulous between us I have just worked 127 hrs in a little over a week.. anyone would be tired. Then he asks why I'm always depressed, why I work all the time.. so I try to talk to him. I remind him that he drinks a lot of his paycheck and someone has to make up that money. That he doesn't even know how to cook, load the dishwasher or do laundry.. all of that falls to me. He doesn't clean the house or help with the kids.. cause that's woman's work and they are MY kids.. I said all you do is get off work go sit in a bar for 3-4 hours and come home. Saturday is much of the same and Sunday's he leaves the house at 10:00 goes to his mothers for lunch (which my kids and I aren't invited) then leaves there in the afternoon and drinks till he comes home about 6:00. then he says he's a bad person, thanks me for pointing out all his faults, says I hate him, says he wants to kill himself.. etc.

I HATE it.. just HATE it!!!! I just want to get in the car (with the kids) and just go.. I feel like I will never break free from him. He blames me for everything, wants to talk then when I talk he gets depressed, defensive and suicidal.

It just sucks the life out of you.. how does he make me feel guilty? people break up all the time, people leave sick and disabled spouses for no good reason other than they are sick of them... they don't seem to have any remorse or regrets.. Why can he make me feel just cruel and ugly??? What is wrong with me?????

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-01-2003
Fri, 08-24-2007 - 3:10pm
As long as HE can keep YOU feeling guilty.....HE dont have to change.
Avatar for rosolo
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-25-2003
Fri, 08-24-2007 - 1:22pm

You are not responsible for the decisions and feelings of anyone., especially a grown

He hasn't tried to change, and I don't think he as a reason.
If nothing changes, then nothings changes. For him, for you, or your children.

Guilt is one of those emotions that is ours. We can only feel guilty if we allow
someone to make us feel that way.It is also a draining, consuming emotion.He doesn't deserve to occupy so much of your "head space".

You are a strong woman, capable of many things. You are a mother.

So....what are YOU doing for YOU?
Meetings, reading any C0-Dependency literature., a walk in the park, night at the movies?

You deserve so much more.


iVillage Member
Registered: 10-24-2006
Fri, 08-24-2007 - 10:55am

Thanks everyone for your help..

Last night when I got home my H was sound asleep.. nothing new about that.. but he had a bouquet of flowers by the bed that he had picked from our yard, tied a ribbon around the vase and put a note on it that said "I love you".

Guilt for not appreciating him. Guilt for not trusting his intentions. Guilt for hating the ups and the downs. Guilt for wishing he would either come back to me or just leave. Guilt for allowing that small gesture to mean so much. Guilt for not knowing what to do.. guilt, I'm drowning in a sea of it.

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-02-2004
Fri, 08-24-2007 - 8:13am
It just sucks the life out of you.. how does he make me feel guilty? people break up all the time, people leave sick and disabled spouses for no good reason other than they are sick of them... they don't seem to have any remorse or regrets.. Why can he make me feel just cruel and ugly??? What is wrong with me?????****
There is NOTHING wrong with you. Living with an alcoholic is HARD. perhaps one of the hardest things in the world. It is hard to be with someone you love when they are incapable of giving you what you need. It sounds like you are getting incredibly burnt out at this point, and who wouldnt be? It is NOT your fault. You are NOT a bad person. You are in a bad situation and need to figure out what is best for YOU and your children. He is not capable at this point in the game of looking out for your best interests. This means that YOU have to. Find time to nurture yourself, I know, easier said then done when working that many hours and with kids, but if you dont, you wont make it through. If you do decide to end the relationship, it wont be easy, ending it never is, but sometimes you have to look at the long term rather than the short term. Sometimes love has nothing to do with it, you can love someone immensly and it can still be a toxic relationship. It sounds somewhat like you are spending so much time just trying to hold everything together that love is just a luxury that you dont have the time or energy to feel at this point. sigh, I wish it were an easier road. Just know that you ARENT alone in how you feel. I think that EVERYTHING you feel is very common to those who have loved an alcoholic. He got himself where he is now, its HIS job to get himself out. YOUR job is to take care of you. Life is to short to spend it being unhappy.


Sometimes you fake it, till you can make it.

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-07-2003
Thu, 08-23-2007 - 9:29pm
Alcoholism is a family disease and his disease is sucking the life out of you and making you very sick. No one - I repeat - NO ONE should work as many hours as you do. He has you like a puppet on a string - supporting him and his habit and running over you like a bulldozer.
Al-Anon has been suggested (which I totally agree with) and more urgently, you may want to seek some counseling. You MUST learn to break free from the chains of alcoholism before it kills you.
My therapist used to tell me, "Ahh - guilt. The gift that keeps on giving." Every single time I have pangs of guilt I think of that saying and manage to work it out of my system.
You are being victimized dear girl. What is the worst that can happen if you decide you have had enough? Really - what is the very worst thing? If you lost your home - so what? It is better than losing your soul - and your life. God did not put us on this earth to be miserable - He truly didn't.
God bless you - I truly want what is best for you so I speak passionately!
Avatar for rosolo
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-25-2003
Thu, 08-23-2007 - 3:18pm

His disease is doing this to you. His disease will do and say anything to justify
its existence.

Each time he does this, he put the guilt and blame back on you. He NEVER has to
look at himself, nor take responsibility for any of his actions.

Has he always been this way? Have you always shouldered more then your share of
the responsibility in your marriage? Or, has this gotten progressively worse.

Sometimes, when we are "care takers" for others, it is something we have done our
entire relationship. Without healthy boundaries, eventually, the caretaker becomes
exhausted, worn out and spent. If our spouse doesn't know, and it isn't clear
what we want them to do, we have to let him know.

For instance, you can't get him to stop drinking,but, you can ask for his help. If you need his help with certain things, be clear about it. If he can't, either because he is drinking, or because he just won't, then you can explain to him. I asked and I need you to do "X', and you didn't.

I can get tooooo wrapped up in my DH's drinking or actions. I have to be clear what I expect from him, even, if it is sooooo obvious to me (dishes in the sink, etc.), and
then see if he can help me. My DH is an abuser, not an alcoholic, but, due to my own struggles I realized I had gotten to wrapped up what he needs to do and change it made
me stressed beyond belief.

Have you read "Co-Dependent No More" by Melodie Beattie? It really will help shed some light on the alcoholic and how selfish and manipulative we/they are. It will also help you regain your sense of self and well being wether you are living with or without
the active alcoholic in your life.

Don't feel guilty because he is sick, and trying to make you feel as sick as he is.
Please try to get to Al-Anon too, so, that you might find some solace and refuge from
the storm you live in daily.


iVillage Member
Registered: 04-15-2004
Thu, 08-23-2007 - 3:16pm

Alcoholism/addiction is a FAMILY disease... You are sick just as much as he is, maybe more so, but in a different way. I sincerely hope you are considering checking out alanon, IMHO I think it may be just what you need at the moment.

You are NOT responsible for his drinking no matter what excuse he throws out. Only he is responsible for himself and his actions/conduct. The hard truth is that you do have a part in what is happening or not in your marriage- we all do, but that is a completely different matter. Its something you may likely start to uncover once you start to focus on you and not what he is or isn't doing and why. Again, alanon can provide some tools for keeping the focus on you and not the alcoholic. For me, it took more than six months before I could start to see any progress on my own recovery and then I started to have very big "ephiphanies" as to how and why I apparently behaved certain ways and made certain decisions...I finally started to realize that his alcoholism had made me sick too. It changed me into a person I did not recognize and did not want to be.

Consider the "guilt" feeling as a starting point to begin examining yourself, to find out how you can become more healthy in your relationship - for yourself.

Take what you like, leave the rest...