Find answers to some of the more frequently asked questions on the Forums.

Forums guidelines

Our guidelines keep the Forums a safe place for people to share and learn information.

15 year relationship, was it for nothing?

Community Member

I have been in a relationship with my partner for 15 years (16 in November) and we have been having issues for maybe the last year and a half. Pretty much since he started hanging out with new people. Anyway, he has been drinking to excess everyday, is at the pub minimum 3 times a week and gambles a lot. My issue is when he drinks he is a different person. He rarely remembers what happened when he wakes the next morning, which is fine for him, but not for me as he is usually quite mean in the things he says when he is drunk. He usually says things like he is going to leave me, he has had enough, im stupid etc. Last night was really bad where he said he wanted to move and I said i didnt (because i dont want to move away from family and be someone where i have no one, and my dad is also not in the best of health) so because of that I dont love him and have never loved him and ive just used him for 15 years (thats the nice version). He also accuses me of cheating all the time which i would never do. He was saying that his life is worthless etc. He said he left his kids for me and i have done nothing for him. His kids are still in our lives, i have always made an effort with them (they are all grown up now). He stormed out of the house and has not returned. I tried to call him a couple of times this morning to see if he was ok but he didnt answer. I sent a text saying if he didnt want to talk at least let me know that he is ok please and I got a text back saying "ok". that is all the communication i have got.

Last year, he left me without warning but came back 2 or 3 days later realising he had 'made a mistake'. This was after he had an affair and i forgave him.

i dont know what to do. Is this it? I have stood by him with all that he has done, been there for him through everything. I feel so alone and lost. My best friend is gone.

17 Replies 17

Community Member

Hi Manda

It sounds like your partner has some serious issues. I wish my ex was as patient and as understanding as you.

From what you have shared, I don't think you are the problem is you. His excessive drinking and an affair would suggest he is struggling with some internal demon.

Can you get him to see a counsellor; either as a couple or by himself?

Champion Alumni
Champion Alumni

Dear Manda,

Well done for reaching out with such a devastating issue. It's so awful when you see someone change and start spiralling out of control.

I would like to suggest that you check out this link: https://www.al-anon.org.au/ and maybe, hopefully, there you might find the help and support that you are seeking.

The situation you described in your post, seems almost exactly what I too experienced in a relationship many years ago. And although mine only lasted a total of about 3 years, the devastation and loneliness I felt was overwhelming.

I now have a very different life, thanks to the help of Al-anon, and am very thankful for the help, support and understanding that was offered there. I don't think I would have made it this far without it, to be honest.

Anyway, you can, of course keep coming back here as much as you like. I do hope things improve for you soon.

Take care. I'll be thinking of you. xo

Community Member

yes he does have some demons he struggles with that stem from his childhood and he also has depression. I know this is not an excuse for how he treats me but I try to understand that it is not easy for him.

After the affair last year and when he left and then came back, i said my condition was i wanted him to see a counsellor (i have been wanting him to see one for years), he went maybe 3 or 4 times and stopped. he uses the excuse that they didnt call him for an appointment. I even saw one for myself as he said it wasnt fair he had to see one and i didnt. I still mention it every now and then but i dont see it happening, i honestly wouldnt know how honest he would be. I know he is not honest with his drs about the amount he drinks.

He has come home, but is still in a bit of a mood. He gave me a hug so i dont know if he doesnt remember all of last night or just parts of it. He would know something happened as he would of woke up not home.

Thank you for your response. You are right, the loneliness is so overwhelming. I have put so many walls up around me to stop being hurt now. When he is drunk, i just shut down.

I will check out the link you posted. thank you.

Community Member

Maybe you need to go as a couple. That way there will be no excuses and you will know if he is being honest.

The drinking and the affair are a symptom, not the cause of the problem. I know childhood issues can create a lot of problems in later life. It's not an excuse, but it might explain the problems you have now.

In the short term, the link that Soberlicious96 sent looks to be a good place to start. If you can get the drinking under control you can work on the underlying demon; assuming that you still think the relationship can be salvaged.

Depression and alcohol are a bad mix!

Community Member

Hi MandaC,

I'm so glad you chose to reach out and I really commend you for seeking support on this issue, it is not easy! If I'm completely honest, I applaud you for tolerating your partners problematic drinking and behaviour for the last year and a bit, you are caring, SELFLESS and kind and it makes me anger when people abuse the kindness in others (probably because I have felt my kindness been taken for granted in the past!). From experience, hearing hurtful things from the people we love while under the influence really starts to take a mental tool. Like you said they hardly remember what they said which is half the problem, and we (the person in the firing line) and left to replay their dreadful words over and over in our heads, wondering whether there is some truth to it, it really sucks and is no way to feel in a relationship. I hope you know you are none of those awful things. I agree with the others on this post that it sounds like there may be something going on under the surface and that you just really want to help him. What happens when you do talk to him about this? This could offer some more insight into what going on for him...

I hear you say you don't know what to do, that your partner has left the house with little to no communication. From my point of view the fact that you put your own feelings aside to check in on him and is safety was an amazing thing to do ❤️

Hey, just checking in to see how you are, and how things going today?

Community Member

not the best today. started off ok. but tonight he basically said that if i dont move (pretty much 5 hours away from my family) he is leaving no matter what and i have wasted 15 years of his life and dont love him that i have just used him.

I said to him that i dont seem to make him happy anymore and his response was "well whos fault is that then".

I am so down i cant seem to pull myself back up now. i love him but i dont want to leave my family as we are a really close family.

Community Member

For what it is worth, I think the move would be a mistake.

If you do move 5 hours away, the problem will follow wherever you go. If you have family nearby, you are better off where you are.

In phycological terms your partner is projecting his problems onto you. He is clearly unhappy with his life and is trying to blame you for his problems. As I said previously, alcohol and depression are a bad mix.

Here is a link that you might find useful. It is no silver bullet, but it might help you understand what is going on.


You should not have to choose?