married to an alcoholic

Married To An Alcoholic

You want your alcoholic to take responsibility for their actions and stop their current behaviour that is wasting away their life, don’t you? However for you to be of assistance to them in this endeavour you need to apply the same formula to your own life.

You want them to stop behaving the way they do? Well to achieve this, you need to stop behaving the way you do and blaming them for your resulting unhappy life. If you don’t want to be a doormat then get up off the floor!

Your life path or your quality of life is not their fault or a result in their actions. It is a result of your reactions. This is the same in reverse; their drinking, quality of life or life choices are not a result of your actions. Their drinking is not your fault, their actions are not your fault, their quality of life is not your fault. They are an adult and they are responsible for their day to day life choices. The same as you are responsible for your day to day life choices.

Look at your partner’s life… think about how they are wasting precious days of their life. Now think about your own life, how many days recently have you spent looking after your own dreams and happiness? If the answer is none, then those days that you just existed or existed to deal with the results of their addiction were also wasted.

You don’t have to do anything drastic – just small steps. For instance this week why not  take time out to meet a friend for a few hours or to go to an al anon meeting without letting your mind race about what your partner might be doing while you are out, without worrying if  they will be drunk or sober when you get back. Without feeling you have to get back home to ‘control’ their behavior. Turn off your phone so they can’t harass you with calls and don’t call them to check on them. They are an adult, you are an adult! The first few times you do this, you probably won’t be able to focus on relaxing and being you, but with practice you will learn that they coped without you.

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5 thoughts on “Married To An Alcoholic”

  1. I am a recovering alcoholic 4 plus years , still married to an active addict & alcoholic (pills, mostly) for 9 years . Kicked him out and went back to AA. He was the one who took me to AA ,I had NO idea I was alcoholic even though all the signs were there . My brother died in 1995 (44) from cirohssis it was awful but I was drunk the entire time . Anyways for the last 4 years I have watched , sometimes close other times not so close my husband ‘s life spiral in to a living hell , lost everything , job car , license from not paying taxes, to moving in with his sister who is on methadone and sleeping on a day bed in her living room with 6 dogs and everyone using . I have tried everything to help him , meals cig , rides but in the end it was all part of his disease . I now just wait for the dreaded phone call. He lives in a world of fantasy and delusion and he’s gonna do this and gonna do that andf he does nothing but drink and drug , all day and play games on FB. His world is his sordid friends and family who think Im the psycho but whatever, my Life is good i pulled myself out of the Hell I was in , have a job debt free for the most part and I am working my program to the best of my ability . I just turned 55. I had to do it alone for the most part except for my sponsor and AA. My family whats left of them ( 2sisters) my mother died in July 2009 from liver and stomach cancer are still using one pot, the other drinks. My problem is that I ams still love him and am obsessed with him .what hes doing , thinking etc. He’s recently yaken to romancing a woman 67 who was a friend of him Mom’s on FB. I was heartbroken .She is married but indulgin herself in a fantasy as well. I knw that nothing ill come of it , wrote her and tried to warn her about what I habd been through , but she’s still in contact with him all this in 2 weeks , Its all just so bizarre. So i found this website and Its helped mt tremendously to see the reality of what Im thinking and what is really going on . I filed for divorce a month ago but am not sure if Im going forward , why? it wont change anything and hell need the insurance to bury him, plus I have to wait for 10 years to collect S.S. from him. Sounds cold huh? Yeah i feel that way myself sometimes …

    1. Hey there, your not being cold you are being practical. You have been through AA and you are sticking to your program to stay sober which is so important and well done. However living with addicted loved ones requires another set of skills which you need to work on! For one thing you are letting this man fill up your head space, as you say yourself you are obsessed. This is doing you no good and as you are in recovery you have to be extra careful. You need to learn how to detach but still love. You can hate the addiction but love the person. I lost my only sister to alcohol 4 years ago – a wonderful professional woman before alcohol took over her life, I did what I could to help her when she genuinely was making an effort, but I learnt how to detach my own head space from being obsessed with her life – what she was doing, what she was going to do, what she was thinking. The only person who could help her was herself – she had to change her behaviour and mindset, no one could do it for her. Unfortunately she didn’t make it. My husband’s addiction on the other hand was as bad as hers but he submitted himself fully to what had to be done to get sober and followed the program, got the same support on offer to her and he succeeded.
      You wrote all about his living circumstances, what he is doing and what you are doing to inform the people in contact with him about what he is like. You are right this is obsession! And obsession is not good. You need to clear your head space so you can make decisions about your life and so you can enjoy your life NOT being obsessed by his. So find out where there are Alanon meetings near you and go to one. They are different to AA. There is also a great Al Anon book called Courage to Change – treat yourself!

    2. Thanks ever so much for the posts , I just happened to check in and saw the replies .Things have been better , went to see my counselor he said theres such a thing as a bad “soulmate ” lol good one . Well I’ve tried Alanon , didnt help me but I guess Im still working on focusing on myself . Going to a concert tonight with a couple of friends ( they drink) Ill be at the buffet trying to eat could use a few pounds. My stepdaughter ( his daughter ) is someone Ive been trying to help she is on methadone (daddy helped her along on that score ) but she has expressed some interest in program. He has all but left her to fend for herself . Ive offered a few rides to get groceries but am aware of the boundaries. I help her to understand how sick her Dad is and believe it or not it reinforces it for myself so I dont feel so bad , don’t take it so personally. Kind of like everything is opposite of what I feel , that it just isnt Truth how he thinks and feels that how i feel isnt how it really is when it comes to him. well anyways I am alcoholic so good luck figuring out that one , but i do have a good friend who has helped me tremendously to see how things really are , as she’s been in Alanon for 8 years and really gets it . She is also an alkie . I do pray quite a bit actually constantly to forgive to remove the obsession and I do get some relief , what I was told time and time agin IT TAKES TIME , so im gonna wait it out and live my life just today , thought and prayers for all , Cynthia

  2. Thank you for your blog. I found it one day when I was desparately trying to find some sanity in my crazy world. I have been “around” the Ala-Non, Coda programs for years but always seem to conveniently forget the tools when things are “good” (wishful thinking that I don’t need them I guess). I attended meetings regularly before I met my current husband (because of my former husband) but haven”t been for at least 13 years now.

    I find myself in the worst situation ever right now and am hanging on by my fingernails. I don’t seem to be able to make a decision about anything. Everyday the decision I made yesterday (which seemed like such a good idea at the time) seems proposterous. My husband of 9 years is firmly entrenched in one of his “binges” and I need to focus on myself, keep myself safe and try not to enable him. If he wants to drink himself to death, that is his choice but oh how I wish he would choose something else! I love him so much!

    One Day At A Time is my motto these days, now if I could just figure out how to make that day a happy one (or at least one that I don’t cry myself to sleep on)…… Thanks again for listening. At least right now this very moment I don’t feel alone or that no-one understands what it’s like.

    1. Hang in there girl, there’s lots of us who are and have been in the same position! During the good times it’s so easy to forget how hard things can be – I compare it to child birth – We forget the pain so easily until we are in the throes of it again! One day at a time is good once you do it as it stops your head racing. Can you go somewhere for a night or two to get some time out for yourself? Or at least get to an Alanon meeting so you can start getting yourself strong again. Take care of yourself and drop in again and let me know how you are getting on.

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