WendyPiersall.com

When is it Time to Leave an Alcoholic?

Many of you have shared your personal stories of the pain of living with an alcoholic in your life in the comments below. I encourage you to share what you want, and read through what people have said as well.

I am not a counselor, and am not able to provide you with professional help with your situation. I do highly recommend the following resources that will hopefully offer you guidance and hope that you can get through this (yes, you can).

The Dance of Anger: A Woman’s Guide to Changing the Patterns of Intimate Relationships
This book literally changed my life.

Hazelden Books and Resources
Hazelden provides trusted resources to help prevent, treat, and recover from alcoholism and other drug addiction as well as other related disorders.

Al-Anon / Alateen
Al-Anon has one purpose: to help families of alcoholics.

I leave this post here, originally written in 2007, because of the thousands of visitors who come to this site every month seeking help as the spouse of an alcoholic.I also hope that it serves as an inspiration to you that you are not alone, and that you really can live the life you want. For those that are curious – my husband is indeed still sober and is an amazing example of strength and triumph over addiction.

Ever since I wrote the Married to an Alcoholic series, I have watched in heartbreaking sadness at the keywords people have used to find this site:

  • divorcing an alcoholic husband anger
  • when is it time to divorce an alcoholic
  • married to an alcoholic when should i leave
  • how to leave your alcoholic husband
  • how do i get my alcoholic husband out of our house
  • married to an alcoholic, why am I so angry

To each and every one of you, first of all, my heart goes out to you. I have been where you are now. I did the Google searches too, seeking a way out of the pain and anguish of my everyday life.

But the truth of the matter is that you have found this site because you already know you can’t continue to live your life the way you are currently living it, with an alcoholic spouse at your side.

The answer is probably one you don’t want to hear, but it is the only one that will work for you:

ONLY YOU CAN DECIDE WHEN IT IS THE RIGHT TIME
TO LEAVE AN ALCOHOLIC SPOUSE.

Below are some questions you need to ask yourself. These are not easy questions. And don’t bother taking them on unless you are willing to give yourself honest answers. Set aside some time away from your home environment in order to give these questions your full attention, because you will likely get a bit emotional as you uncover your own truths:

  • What is the cost of my leaving this relationship?
    • How will this decision affect others?
    • What will I leave behind?
    • What will I have to let go of?
    • What will I have to face within myself once I am gone?
  • What is the cost of my staying in this relationship?
    • Who else is being hurt by staying in this alcoholic environment?
    • What will happen to my self-worth, my health, and my happiness if I continue on this path for another 5 years? Another 10 years? Another 20?
    • What am I teaching my children by staying in this relationship?
  • What are the benefits of staying in this relationship?
    • I’m still here for a reason – what am I getting out of staying here?
    • Will these benefits continue for the rest of our lives together, or will they change with time?
    • Do these benefits outweigh the costs? Yes or No?
  • What are the benefits of leaving this relationship?
    • What will I be able to achieve if I end this relationship now?
    • How will I be living my life differently in 5 years if I end this relationship now? 10 years? 20?
    • Do these benefits outweigh the costs? Yes or No?

Additionally, I would encourage you to take this decision seriously. I don’t know any person who has not ‘threatened to leave’ an alcoholic spouse as a leverage chip to try and get their spouse sober.

The problem is with the word “threaten”. If you say you will leave, yet don’t, you are reinforcing the fact that you think it is OK that they continue to drink.

So once you make your decision, you must also be willing to stick to it. And if you aren’t, then you aren’t in a position to make your ‘half decision’ a bargaining chip.

Remember also, if you decide to stay, then you must also take responsibility for that. You know at this point what staying means.

I can tell you this:

Making the decision to leave my husband was the ONLY THING that could have happened in his life for him to make the decision to get sober. I had to take a huge risk, knowing full well that I could have ended up single, or he could have been lying to me once again. So by sticking to my guns, in the end, I got what I wanted most of all. But I had to be willing to let that all go to raise my standards.

This may or may not be what happens with you. Your spouse may decide to continue to drink. You must be willing to face that reality if you are indeed going to decide to stick to your guns, too.
In the end, I did what I will tell you to do:

Follow your heart.

Only you know what is right for you – and your heart is where you will find that answer. I can say from personal experience that following your heart is not always easy, nor does it feel very good at times.

But in the end, it will always lead you in the right direction. Always. And it will feel good with time, and with continued listening. I can promise you this.

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Wendy

I'm getting back to my blogging roots on WendyPiersall.com: writing about life, art, business, publishing, and following your heart. I'm here to inspire, encourage, and share my journey. I hope my art and writing makes your journey better, too.

373 CommentsLeave a comment

  • I am sitting here crying my heart and soul out. have just made the decision that I have to leave my partner of 10 years. After all of the broken promises I have to accept that he does not want to change badly enough to move forward in to a counselling program and to take the steps to stop drinking. One of my best friends lost her husband to cancer a year and a half ago and when we spoke about our grief she explained that she would do anything to have her husband back she missed him so very much. That has been weighing heavily on me because we still have times that are good and I love him so much. I have to listen to my heart I really do know this. Have answered all the questions and I know what is right not only for myself but for him too. I think he is so addicted that he can’t stop but in his own way I know he loves me. That is what is so hard.

  • Wow! So many stories and we are all the same. For me: got divorced, reconnected with high school boyfriend. Let him move in as his ex had taken everything bad he head nothing. Knew he had an alcohol problem but we were having fun. Blamed both are drinking on our divorces. Married him. Loved him, had doubts about his drinking, he really needed my insurance. He made good money WHEN he worked. He started drinking day and night. Forgot Christmas, birthday, anniversary. Almost one year married I put him on a plane for work. We had done nothing but fight for months. He quit drinking cold turkey, totaled a rental car. I had to fly out to get him. He was yellow, hep C took months to get healthy. Sober for almost 3 months. I come home from a workshop, he’s passing out drunk. Just wanted to see what would happen if he drank. Almost a year later, I come home and he’s passed out in the shower. I called 911. His blood alcohol is something like .348! And he’s conscious and talking. The dr told me he was a professional alcoholic. I told him it was the bus station or rehab. He went to rehab and a halfway house. Came home, got a job that pays hardly anything compared to his other job. Quit going to meetings and working the program. I came home from work 2 weeks ago and he was falling down drunk. Called in sick to work the next day, drunk when I got home from work. Same thing the next day. I told him he had crossed the boundary I set at rehab. He cried, begged me not to leave him, said I would cause him to drink and die. Got to the point he got nasty and said he was going to look for wife number 3. I’ve been to the lawyer. Found out he’s been drinking in secret almost since he got his first pay check at his new job. I have been paying for everything and having to ask my parents for money. I went to the lawyer last week. Scheduled to go back and sign the papers next week and then he will be served. Why do I feel so terrible?

  • I’ve been married to an alcoholic for over 13 years. He has a son from a previous marriage, who is 15 years old and has numerous diagnoses for Asperbers, depression, anxiety, ADHA, ODC, and ODD (Oppositional Defiant Disorder. My stepson has an extremely high IQ, so does my husband. They are both gifted in many ways academically and musically. Tensions between the two households is unnerving.

    My husband will look me straight in the face and tell me he’s not drinking. I ask him to blow in my face to smell the evidence which he usually fails this test almost every time. He tells me he’s going to stop drinking but never does. He is rigid, controlling, selfish, and sits in his shit-hole feeling sorry for himself. He can’t see to hold a job down this past year. He makes great money but can’t seem to get along with his co-workers or supervisors. He’s very smart and knows exactly what needs to be done to make his projects work but is stifled by his “bosses inability to see it his way.” Most of the time, my husband is right about Project Management. He’s an expert and has been in the business of Project Management for over 17 years. His approach is rigid and hostile, curt and full of arrogance when it comes to “trying to force his strategies down the throats of others on his team. He comes home a spews his anger and frustrations on me. Then he goes for the bottle. He’s gained weight, won’t exercise, eat right, and isolates himself to the point where he has no friends. I allowed him to suck me in to his shit and I can’t take it any longer. I’m a Christian woman who has the mind-set of standing by your man, with prayers, support, patience, love and keeping the peace.

    My husband attends church, sings and plays guitar during church services, prays, reads his bible, but its still not enough for him to stop drinking and destroying his body and our marriage. More and more, my heart tells me to leave. Our house needs major work done before we can put it on the market to get the most money out of our investment. He starts projects but never finishes them. Our house looks like its under construction. I’m at the point where I don’t care. Sell it as is so I can get the hell out of this crazy-house of pure madness. I have no ties to children. I’m concerned for our pets because I refuse to give them up. I’ve been a stay-at-home mom for years because I have to make myself available in case something happens with my stepson at school where school officials can’t handle him. I work only part time. I feel stuck. I feel like living on the streets would give me more peace of mind then living in this house.

    God is sustaining my mental health, emotional stability, spiritual strength and physical well being. We have no health insurance right now. I take good care of myself by running, swimming, biking, etc. I believe my husband is jealous of me and my ability to keep bettering myself while he sits on the couch, eating, drinking, sleeping, and continuing to be sucked into the negative news and constantly tuned in to his phone and pc. Its just a matter of time before I take a rubber mallet and crush my laptop into pieces because I’m sick and tired of watching him sit there for hours on Facebook, looking at new guitars and other selfish things he wants to purchase.

    I’m living in hell and only I have control to make my life better but I’m scared to death. Please, someone, give me some advice or words of encouragement. Prayers help too. I refuse to go down the road again of hopelessness.

    Thank you.

    Karen

  • Listen up ladies, you have to give the drinker an alter mantom
    now if your 62 u can apply for your ssi , if your not you can go to the welfare office yes welfare office and tell them u need help, they have many programs that help and many women some of u may have o hide your shelf from your man, he has to quit, tell him u will date him until u see he has stopped absolutely no drinker what so ever they cannot not stop if u add to it and it means u cannot either, drinking is a disease so stop it, u have to make them leave or u have to leave, but there are ways, , even schools understand u are mot alone as this sites shows u, i left am still single i was scared to go i had him leave the house we put it up for sale we split it without and attorney but some of u there is free attorneys that help , sell the house and start over my gosh the fear , the mental anguish the embarrassment , the stupidity the knocking u down, u are a wonderful person or he would have married you so stay that wonderful person and leave,look at it this way would you have dated him if u knew, leave them make plans when thir gone to work , first start paying off all your credit cards yours, use his for charges, save 50 a week out to a savings account he can not get into, save save save, sell thing that is yours and save, sell down so u don;t have to move, if he says anything tell him your cleaning out old stuff , do not lt them know, then refinance the hose if u can just in Yoruba name if u can pay for it, all u have to do is tell them u found a better interest deal and sign papers alone, for one if they drink they have already out your house at risk , u can save your house and your marriage probably because it will get worse before it gets better, but i know this one thing u can do is get a restrain g order if you are legally separated, if he gets near u u can call police he going to jail and jail is not a bad thing it sometimes wakes them up not always but sometimes, while your doing alt his u can hide what your doing, now for you woman, that do not have control of the money but get money for groceries , u can say they cost extra and start to save, u can say light bill was more and save hiding little money a little at a time adds up and helps with the transition for u
    get out ladies and make them chose if they don;t u get to keep your sanity, and your love for the next man their not all bad, but DO NOT CHOSE THE SAME MISTAKE ANYONE WHO DRINKS IS OFF THE DATING MENU FOR ME

  • I am in a relationship for 3-1/2 yrs.. lived with him, moved out on him because of his insane temper and verbal abuse when drinking to me and my daughter, he has a son from prior marriage who lives with us. My daughter is 18. He is just like Lisa (2007 comment) said, wonderful, loving so much fun when he is not drinking. for a while it has been 3-4 days a week, he is not always mean, depends on his moods what the drunk state is going to be for the night.. I am sick of walking on eggshells around this man, when drinking “trying” not to get him in bad mood.. We tried again and again.. live together. I want him gone.. I have been the one to leave, my ex husband, and him 2 times before, I was a fool to think things change.. He says its not his fault people, (my daugher, his ex-wife) get him angry .. they don’t get it.. and he flys off the handle and freaks out.. (all the time!!).. no of course for the past couple days he is I love you, I don’t mean things I say when fighting.. blah blah blah.. Our lease is up in August and I told him to leave, I moved to the spare bedroom. I just need to get this out.. because as I write this.. I was previously thinking, things can be ok if he goes to AA or whatever.. but you know what? things won’t change.. Its my life and my daughters and I am tired of being on the edge waiting for it to happen again.. My daughter seriously thinks I will forgive him “like always” and how can you let him treat you that way mom.. its awful.. I feel better getting this all out.. thank you all for your stories.. they have been an amazing help to me.

  • I’ve just left my alcoholic husband. We live in India, where the term divorce is highly looked down upon. Financially we are currently very rich, living in a large palatial house. I have a 3 yr old daughter. We live with his parents and his father is supporting us as well taking care of our the financial requirements. My daughter is extremely fond of her gr parents and her father, she doesn’t get to see his alcoholic bad side, he drinks but he plays nicely with her. I’m very scared abt my future 10 yrs later because he doesn’t wrk. and because I am provided for, it’s expected that I stay around my husband looking after him. He has gone to 3 rehabs and no improvement. Also my mother in law gives me a really nasty time n she tries to create problems between my husband n me. I am scared abt my future because both of us don’t wrk and my husbands father is also ageing and will soon retire. I’m 33 years old. My husband also gambles and till now no financial security has been allocated for my daughters future.

    I hv moved back with my parents but my daughter misses her house her father and her grandparents terribly and it tears my heart to see that. She meets them once a week but once the divorce proceedings begin I’m unsure of how things will turn.
    Kindly advice on how to explain things to her. Also how to handle her behavioural changes – she has started biting her nails, become v cranky and aggressive .

  • When you dread the thought of coming home after working an exhaustive, terrible day. The one place you want to go to; your safe haven where you sleep, relax and unwind. When you would rather stay and pick up an extra 3 or 4 hours after working for 12, that is when it is time for you to get out and move on. When you truly dread the thought of spending time with your alcoholic spouse you need to Cowboy/ Cowgirl Up And git! Or you can stay and perish for the cause. Just remember, Martyrs only get one thing in life…. Dead! Don’t let your heart be a Martyr nor your mind and especially not your body!

  • I don’t know how to approach my situation. It seems pretty tame after reading all of your posts. Been married nearly 30 years, two grown up children and a husband I love. He is a great father, most of the time a good husband, but a compulsive liar as far as drink is concerned. I
    He doesn’t work and spends the day drinking though tells me he doesn’t. He controls the drink well enough to be a be able to hold a conversation and sound convincing when he says he is not drunk, just very tired (he has some health issues which do make him tired so I sometimes doubt myself when he swears he is sober). He never gets aggressive and treats me well. But he doesn’t eat properly, he doesn’t help at all in the house, he spends each day with his brother (an alcoholic just relapsed after his third stint in rehab) and basically it feels as though I am now just the housekeeper, not a wife.
    I have threatened to leave, but each time he says I am being silly, why would I throw everything away. And of course, to tell someone that he drinks hard but treats me well would make most people wonder why I am so unhappy. I get panicky at family events in case he acts ‘tired’ and because of his health issues I feel enormously guilty about even thinking of leaving. Often I talk myself into sticking with it, but more and more these days I am beginning to wonder if this is all I have to look forward to. I know I sound selfish compared to some of the horrific tales on this site, but I just do not know what to do for the best, his, mine and our families.

  • My dad was an alcoholic. I’m of the opinion you shouldn’t marry one in the first place. I say this with mixed feelings, because if my mom hadn’t married my alcoholic dad… I would not exist.

    My old man would get very aggressive when he had the liquor in him. He’d get out of bed in the middle of the night and drink from his secret stash. Somehow he managed to keep it mostly hidden from his colleagues at work.

    My mom ended up divorcing when I was 6. At this point, she had already endured him for 15 years.

    My dad set a great example… of how NOT to parent.

    I haven’t seen him in 20 years and I intend to keep it that way.

  • Reading this post has opened my eyes and given me courage. For soooo long I thought I was alone in thinking something was wrong with me to love an alcoholic. I have always felt the need to be loved and to feel safe. I divorced my first husband after 14 yrs of drinking and abuse. Two yrs later i met and married my second husband, my best friend. I soon discovered he is a binge drinker. When he is sober he is the best husband in the world, but drunk, I do not want to be around him. I am now joining a support group and getting help for myself. I am learning to love myself and learning to detach with love from my husband. I am learning to make healthier choices. Thank you all for being brave enough to share. I take one day at a time and I know God will take care of me.

  • Hi I have questions my husband of 11 years is very bad alcoholic? In lately he’s bin very angry and when he’s drunk he calls him self a devil what is that mean please help?????

  • I have been married to a wonderful man for the past 18 years. We have a 17 year old daughter. My husband is an alcoholic through and through. He went to rehab and was sober for 9 months. Started drinking again. He stops for 3 months and starts again each time. Each time he starts drinking, he binge drinks that it has come so bad that he looses all sense of control, of himself. He stop now since the beginning of June and has started again to drink on Friday, 16th August. I love him so very much and I know deep inside things will never change. He always says that things will change. He lies, he hides his alcohol. He told my daughter this morning that he will not drink this week then when I phoned him, I could here he was drunk. My daughter has gotten so use to this but I feel that I have let her down as a mother by not doing anything. Please can someone help me and tell me what I must do/

  • If you are not married, do not marry an alcoholic man. If he does not get help and only he can do it, you will end up disliking him and finding him gross. You will be on a emotional roller coaster for life!

  • I would tell you my story, but after reading all of yours, I could take a piece from each of what you all said your lives were like and mine would be the same. I too came here looking for the magic answer that I needed to leave my alcoholic boyfriend. Keyword being boyfriend and yes I am smart enough not to marry this man. But living with him and staying is the same as being married to him. I did go to alanon and found that their solutions were heavily based on religion and gave tools to stay, which I find contradictory because God would never want anyone to suffer. I also found it funny that the AA meetings were held upstairs in a Church and the alanon meetings were held downstairs in the basement. Closer to hell I guess! We didn’t even get coffee and cookies like the drunks did. I think what most of us need is a step by step guide to getting the hell out. So, here it goes. As I am writing this, I am hoping by the end I will take my own advice and you will too.

    1. Imagine yourself sitting at a red light. You wait around patiently for it to change and it doesn’t. Each time you think that you are going to get your turn, the light goes green on the other side and the other drivers keep it moving while you stay behind. This is your life right now. You wait at the red light because that is what you have been trained to do. But you really stay at that red light because you know the law could be watching or you could go and risk getting hit by another car. That is your fear. The law is your alcoholic partner and the other car is what you are afraid of happening if you just decide to go. Now other cars have come up behind you and see that the red light is not changing so, they won’t wait and go around you. Maybe one or two of them will blow the horn at you until you go. Those are your friends and family. The ones that go around you are the ones that see you sitting stagnant in a horrible situation and can’t help you. The ones that blow the horn are your family that wants to push you to do what is right and fair. Nothing in life should control you or stop you from being happy. As you sit alone at that light, look both ways, push on the gas pedal and just go.
    2. Money makes the world go round. We can’t live without it. But you would be surprised at how much money will come to you if you allow it to. Once you stop using money as an excuse and telling yourself that you can’t survive without their help, you will have what you need to live. You are not thinking clearly when you are floating around in their beer bottle. Your thought process about money is what is stopping it from coming in. I know that staying with family is not ideal always because we are adults and should be able to stand on our own, but asking for help is nothing to be ashamed of. Stay in a shelter or apply for government financial help. It’s out there for a reason. If you think I am wrong, just remember that they bury people, not money.
    3. Take a look in the mirror. Aren’t you tired of the black eyes? The bloody nose? The busted lip? The painful bruises all over your body? Even if they don’t hit you, aren’t you tired of allowing those words to damage your self worth? Don’t you know that when they say these ugly things to you that they really are talking about how they feel about themselves? They do to you what they wish they could do to themselves, but are too much of coward and selfish to do so. You are not a punching bag and you are not a doormat. Just know that you can do better than this for yourself and they cannot.
    4. Your children are a reflection of you. We all love our children so much, but yet we allow them to live in this hell. You may think that they are too young to remember or they will remember and not follow your mistakes. Sadly most children repeat the mistakes of their parents. Now imagine your daughter coming to see you with black eyes and a husband reeking of booze. Break the cycle and show your children that this behavior is not tolerable. Stand up for your children now before it is too late.
    5. Feel guilty eating an extra piece of cake and not leaving behind a drunken mess. They want you around because they know that you have put up with their crap for so long so what is the problem now? They know that most will not and they need someone to take it out on because they can feel their bodies giving out. They need someone to blame. An excuse to drink. Well, you don’t have to be that excuse or person to blame.
    6. Remember that red light? Sure someone will eventually come along and fix it, but that is not your job and you can’t wait around until they do. Fixing someone is not your job no matter how much you love them. They have to fix themselves in order to love who they are and until then, they will never love you. If they do love you it may just be because you stuck around and allowed them to keep drinking and not dealing with their issues. That is why they jump from one partner to the next because each time they get a clean slate and a chance to start all over again to see how much the next person will deal with. When they won’t deal, they come back to you because you did. So if he is telling you that he can do better and find someone else, just smile and know that is not true. But you can find better.
    7. Do you remember when you were little and one of your girlfriends invited you over for a sleepover that coming weekend and you had your bags packed since you hung up? Sometimes you need to leave little by little. Pack a suitcase and leave it in your car. Put valuables in boxes and put them in storage. You don’t have to wait for that big blow up to happen to march out the door because that could put your life in danger or cause you to do something that lands you in jail. Leaving during a fight makes us vulnerable. We sit around regretting the argument and listening to their tears and begging us to come back and since all our stuff is at home/hell, we go back. But if you prepare ahead of the inevitable fight, it makes it easier not to go back. You already have your clothes, your stuff is safe so you can be away for a while and decide your next plan.
    8. Our beloved pets. nobody wants to leave them behind, but if you know that you are leaving, find them homes in advance. It’s hard to let go, I know, but they don’t need to get hurt or killed because the drunk decides to get back at you. But if you do leave in a hurry, take them with you if you can.
    9. When you find yourself in a hole, just reach up. You would be surprised at how many people are willing to help you if you accept the help. Many therapists know that it is very hard to get someone to leave a situation. But if you are serious enough, they will help you through.
    10. Life is about change for the better not for the worse. We only have a short time on this earth and the time that is given to us is too precious to waste. Don’t think about how many years you have lived with this. Instead, think of how many years you are going to live without it.

  • I have been married for 28 yrs . Having been married previously w a child. I married again and having 1 child w this person. All reality is It is all about the them. No matter how well u have it money, jobs, success, love it doesn’t make them happy. We have good jobs ,nice home , ect the nothing changes anything. same verbal abuse. Typical from what I have read from others on here. I have only just found this site tonite because I have I am at the point of no return. All the reasons I have read r typical as well. I pray this is my 1st step to recovery. I am done trying to change someone who WONT .

  • I took your questions and found the answers , no one knows their future, the drink has made life hard, the more into the marriage the harder it gets, i should have baled long ago, but i tried to succeed in this marriage, but the all knowing statement is they have to meet you halfway , if they choose not too then you have to bale, otherwise you will lose yourself and if children involved you will lose them and maybe they will be destroyed from it, I have been in a roller coaster marriage, we would go to church he would quit or i would be embarrassed my the smell of alcoholic drink, his actions, he gets worse, it doesn’t help his family thinks i am the one causing his ill tenderness hard luck, had i known he had taken hard rugs before the marriage i would have turned away, i would have had not been for the child, we have together, this is why God says wait for marriage and stay of equal yoke you will not get all this hardship and its a toll ladies , we have no sex life, ,we argue about nothing all the time, mostly because he looses stuff and blames me , i have to babysit him i feel like i am taking care of an invalid , he cares for me when i am sick and knows i am at wits end about his drinking tries to butter me up but them back to his old self i think he is waiting for me to die so he can live his sick life all lone and then have sex on the side which would be impossible since he is almost impotent from the alcohol,he says he wants something else i said go fo it because what your looking for isn’t looking for you , but then the remarks and hate slng just get worse we just get better at hate slurs and rude remarks trying to outdo each other , this is not a relationship , love is kind , love does not hurt love cares cherishes honors, love does not get jealous or spiteful , lov is good lov is peaceful love is wonderful expecting the same each day and letting it run wild , i chose love , need to leave, God said to me the other morning, ENOUGH IS ENOUGH IT NOT WORTH IT

  • I recently left my highly functioning alcoholic husband. I am 46 and he is 47 years old. We were high school sweethearts and have been together for 29 yrs ( 21 yrs married). This was the most difficult decision of my life.

    My husband began drinking as a teenager. We moved in together three yrs. before we were married, but were engaged. It would take too long to say all of the things that we have been through. I can just tell you that it has been less than pleasant and has gotten progressively worse through the years. I simply could not take it any longer. He had gotten to where he drinks a case of beer every night and of course, he blames me for his drinking. It took me a long time and moving out on him 3 times in the past yr. before I recently got the courage to leave.

    I have been in my new home for a little over a week. It hurts everyday, but I keep taking one day at a time. Luckily, we never had children, so I didn’t have to go through that heartache of it all. Each day I feel more liberated and free. I still cry on a daily basis. He has not contacted me at all. Of course, because it’s still my fault I’m sure.

    I never thought my marriage would end this way. He was my best friend and I do miss him, but I have to find myself again, even it it means doing it without him. God bless all of you and know that it does work out :)

  • Hi, I live with my boyfriend and have been together for 12 years. He has always been a drinker, when we met he had a full time job and was mainly drinking on the weekends. Since then we have moved in with eachother and had two children. I love him with all my heart he is such a good dad to our children taking them out for walks to the park etc but when hes had a drink he is a total different person. He’s called me vile names, threatened to hit me, had the police round for being noisy and I am a living wreck. whenever he goes out I am looking at the door wondering when he is going to roll in drunk. He tells me to stop nagging him and that he drinks because i nag and i just say i am on my nerves constantly when he goes out as he always will go out drinking. his close relative is an alcoholic as well and i know it does not help. if my boyfriend is being “good” the relative will offer him a “drink” and he’ll say no but he’ll be offered 4 – 5 times then the person will say im going to pour you one as i know you want it. this person will pour my boyfriend a drink when he says no he is being good and i will feel like screaming the place down saying are you mad!!! as they are close i know he wont stop seeing this person so that is out of the window. i really dont know what to do i feel like leaving him but then i get scared thinking what if im making a mistake.

  • I am the alcoholic, I am the Alcoholic with a twist, I have 2 separate mental illnesses that I am being treated for. I have been horrible in the pastt that he knows about and some he doesn’t. I was extremely drunk last night and smoked a lot of pot and apparently I was hitting on one of his friendsall night. Then on our way home (me n my boyfriend) he spat in my face. I only know this because he wanted me to know. And he had a few choice names. I had a guest, so I asked him if could call him later. But I probably won’t because I am going to be put down and yelled at, I don’t care if I am in the wrong after knowing him for 20 years, being his girlfriend for the last 22 years. I am done. Maybe I was unconsciously trying to get him to break up with me

  • my husband loses all thoughts of common sense as soon as someone asks him if he wants to come over and have a beer, a friend is visiting and wants to have a beer, if someone calls and asks him to come along with them somewhere, it will end up involving beer. he has promised me that he is not going to drink anymore, within 24 hours of that statement is when he lost all common sense and left the house without saying goodbye, telling me he was leaving or going anywhere, left our pup in the kennel, and left the propane heater on out on the back porch. he just walked out the door, got in his friends car and left. he had an agenda of things to do that day. needless to say, none of it got done. i am not even sure how long he was gone for because i was in my room doing homework. when i did come out to see what he was doing, he was nowhere to be found. my son told me who he left with and where he could have gone. i jumped in the car, drove to a house, and there he was- outside smoking a cigarette. i screamed some expletives at him to get in the car and we were off. at home, he cooked a burger, ate, and then when passed out at about 5:30 pm until the next morning. this was actually a less eventful drinking situation for me, it usually involves some verbal, mental and emotional abuse… but i got off lucky this time around. my whole anger at this moment is with the fact that with even the THOUGHT of drinking, the concept of making the right choices and decisions went flying out of his brain as the idea of drinking tiptoed in. I’ve been married to him for 12 years, this isn’t getting old, IT IS OLD! i am too strong within my heart, mind and soul to deal with this any longer. i have had many experiences, but when i caught him smoking marijuana with my 17 year old sons and their friend on the front porch of my house, that was the last straw. it is not just his life that he is affecting, it is MY life that he is being a negative distraction to! and im not one to allow negativity into my life.

  • I read these comments and think perhaps I’m over-resting. My husband is not an alcoholic, he can go without drinking for a period of time. But when he does drink, he turns into someone completely different – someone cold and mean and sneery and cruel – and has no memory in the morning. He wakes up and acts like everything is fine. I think I’m going mad. Is this familiar to anyone or should I grow up and deal with it? When he’s sober he’s magic.

  • Just came across this and the comments provide a lot of insight. My bf of almost 5 years (living together 4) is an angry alcoholic. He also suffered from depression, anger issues, anxiety etc. he has started seeing a psycologist in a top rated substance abuse program..started about a month ago…hasn’t done anything. I’m 42 (he’s 31) and I feel like at this point in life he has taken away the last of my youth, any chance of having kids, and my financial security that I have worked very hard to get. I have thrown him out but he won’t leave. Now that he’s in a program I know if I boot him he will stop going. I’m angry all the time! He has nowhere to go…throwing him out would actually kill him. I want out of this relationship (my heart hasn’t been in it for a while) but I do actually care what happens to him…probably the only person..and if I “threw him away like everyone else has” he wouldn’t survive..I know that for a fact. STUCK,,

  • I’m 68. I’ve been married to my alcoholic wife for 20yrs. She drinks morning, noon, & night! Most days falling down drunk! I’m so disappointed I can hardly speak. I would leave put have several horses and dogs and don’t have any place to go:(

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