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Living with wife who is an alcoholic

John_s
Community Member

Hi,

have been married 19 years. 2 kids. My wife is an alcoholic suffering from depression and anxiety. The drinking is everyday. Alcohol is hidden throughout home. She continually lies about the hidden alcohol and the fact she has been drinking. I am starting to lose my temper. I come home from work to find her passed out with food cooking on stove. I have asked her to leave. Tomorrow she will me signing lease on apartment. The kids will stay with me. The kids are my main concern. She will not seek help. I have suggested rehab, counselling etc no use. Any thoughts? When she is not drinking she is a wonderfull person. There appears to be a Jekyll and Hyde personality going on.

12 Replies 12

geoff
Champion Alumni
Champion Alumni

Hello John s, welcome to the site.

This is a topic that I'm interested in, simply because I was doing exactly what your wife has been doing, now I only drink socially, but have lost a lot in the event.

Hiding alcohol is common for an alcoholic, it suits them but it definitely creates so many problems for everyone else, especially the family and I'm very sorry that it's been going on and realise the situation you are in.

I think she will be signing a new lease for herself today, and please correct if I'm wrong.

The kids are your main concern and that's great but I feel for them as their mother is always intoxicated, but she has to be the one who decides she wants to stop, no one can force her, because if this does happen, then it will only be temporary, however, once she lives by herself sometimes this will make a person wake up and realise what's not there anymore.

-At some stage there maybe a weak point you could have noticed in her, where you could ask her to go with you to an appointment, but it has to be at that specific time.

-I could give her places to contact, people who will come and talk with her as you may have also done, but unfortunately, she has to be the one to want to stop.

-There is medication her doctor can prescribe for her condition that will stop any urge of wanting to drink, but it won't work if she doesn't want to stop.

-If you try to pressure or force her to get help, it can actually have the opposite effect and could turn her off seeking help, but I know your intention would be good.

- if you think she is in danger or at risk from drinking, you will need to seek help immediately.

-she maybe afraid of seeing her doctor because she knows what they will be telling her, that's a reason why she wants to avoid going

I hope somebody will be able to provide a link for you, as there have been many discussions on this topic, I only wish I had a computer when I was suffering from this, but it cost me my marriage to someone I had only wished to still be together.

Geoff.

John_s
Community Member

Thanks Geoff.

my partner believes she can stop drinking on her own. I have heard this many times before. The daily routine of coming home and finding her asleep in the afternoon from drinking, her going a couple of days without a drink and then she will binge all day away from the home and return early evening totally drunk has worn me down. The kids are seeing her in this state. It is heartbreaking to watch a good caring mother of my kids slowly become a monster affected by alcohol.

Hopefully as you say she may realise her situation whilst living alone. Considering she has lost one brother to liver failure through alcohol abuse and her other brother is on waiting list for liver transplant again through alcohol abuse I have concerns that her spiral downwards will continue.

geoff any thoughts on the Jekyll and hyde personalities?

Terry73
Valued Contributor
Valued Contributor

Hi John,

I am no expert in this area, but from what I understand about what I have seen and heaard, is there some reason why she keeps going back to drink, is it more a habit thing and wanting to have a good time, or is it more to cover an issue she is experiencing?

I ask this because if it is the first, maybe you can get her into activities which can "distract" her from her need for alcohol, and if it is the second, maybe look at solving the issues first so they dont keep dragging her back into old habits, both of these methods combined with something like AA might be what you need to do.

Again, I am no expert. nor have I had much experience in this area (apart from a drunk friend every so often). I am just putting some ideas out there that you may not have thought of before,

I hope the issue gets fixed for you

Terry

geoff
Champion Alumni
Champion Alumni

Hi John, what normally happens is that she can talk to you with a completely straight face, say one thing and do something else, or say and do the opposite of what she did last week.

The weak point maybe when she's not under the influence and possibly suffering some guilt, needs to borrow some money or wants a lift somewhere, that's when she's Dr. Jekyll, but as soon as she drinks then sher changes to Mr. Hyde.

Has this been said 'the only reason I drink is because --------', but can I remind you it's not your fault, there is nothing going to stop her from drinking, and when she says 'she can stop anytime she wants', unfortunately isn't true at all, it's an alcoholic's way to justify her drinking.

She will deny that the drinking is the cause of the separation, so as you know once she begins to drink another person appears, one completely different making promises that are never kept or even remembered.

Sorry mate.

Geoff.

John_s
Community Member

Hi Geoff.

Thanks for your insight to this dreadfull disease. She moves next Wednesday. Just arrived home from work to find her drunk. She is excepting that being an alcoholic has brought about the separation. The constant drinking has taken its toll. I don’t believe she will cope on her own. I know I have to let her go. The kids are as you expect not happy that there mother is leaving. But I believe they understand why.

thanks again.

John_s
Community Member

Update on wife moving out.

has been 4 weeks since she left. Kids are the happiest I’ve seen them in years. I’m struggling with working full time and playing mum. I feel it is getting easier. I do miss her. I don’t miss the drinking. The arguments are still happening over the phone. I feel I am being made at fault. She blames me for her drinking. The kids are not wanting to stay with her for overnight sleeps. I believe they resent her for leaving. Opefully this will change in time. She has been seeing her doctor. She has been very cold and hurtful towards me. To top it off I believe she has been having an affair. Explains all the lies.

Im trying to move on. But it is hard.

Alaskanight
Community Member

Hi John

i can’t offer you any advice but I can say I know exactly what you mean by the Dr Jekyll reference as I too have an alcoholic in my life.. when they are sober they are the nicest most loving person, very laid back and passive, and then when drunk become very argumentative and a bit angry. This person also hides alcohol around the house.

its so hard to be mad at them or bring it up when they are sober because you don’t want to ruin that good time with them..I just wanted to say you are not alone, it’s definitely not your fault, and I think you are really brave for asking her to leave and trying to get her help.

thanks For the reply. The alcoholic in my life was drunk 6 days out of the 7. And on occasion she would disappear on the 7th and return home drunk. The morning person was happy and loving. The afternoon person was intoxicated and full of abuse. Add the fact now I believe she was having an affair I’m glad to see the back of her. I hope she gets the help she desperately needs. I hope she then realises what she has given up and has lost with the secure family life.

for years I was hopefull that she would change. With no luck. I have offered help. Rehab, doctors, aa etc. the disease has tight hold of her.

Terry73
Valued Contributor
Valued Contributor

Hi John,

Sounds like you are now healing, which is a good thing. I just want to say that even though she may accuse you of things, and make excuses for her behavior, I strongly hope you dont fall into returning blame and retaliation like that (not saying you do now, nor do you intend to, as I just want to make you aware of how important it really is).

Every choice you make now should be in concern for your childrens best interests, even over your own wants. Help keep the children open to their mother, the last thing you need is sides to happen, and hopefully the best does happen and she cleans herself up. When that happens, she will be thankful at least that you didnt shut her family away from her, thats the last pressure anyone needs when dealing with problems (this is rather personal to me, so I just hope I am able to help others avoid the struggles I have been going through).

Cheers,

Terry