Online Alcohol Therapy |  Do you need professional help? |  Alcoholism & Recovery Articles |  Self Help Resources

When loved ones drink and you don't

Partners, families, children and friends - they all get affected by your drinking.
Posts: 911
Joined: 01 Nov 2014 07:49

Re: When loved ones drink and you don't

Post by serend » 09 Feb 2019 14:33

Sandy wrote:
04 Jan 2018 13:19
DoneandDone wrote:Hello Serend,

Just to second Shadowlad’s always helpful counsel. It is hard when our relationships are difficult, giving us added motivation to drink. Disengaging mentally from this tension helped me a lot. I cannot control the OH’s drinking, only my own. Since I have stopped, I notice there is a decrease on that front, without my making any demands or that there be no alcohol in the home. I have also stopped trying to change anything at all. Complete acceptance of the way things are has increased my inner contentment and created more peace all the way around. Is there still a lot I would like to be differnt? Sure, but I would have to try to think of what they are at the moment. I am letting a lot just slide and am much happier for it.

Serend not sure if any of this helps you in any way? You can stay where you are and build a very satisfactory life around him, but you need to take tiny little steps back from your relationship every day and in every way. You need to build your strength and confidence to do this. You could end up happy with this, tolerate this or take it for what it is, but it can be damned lonely. Or you can walk away and create a new life for you. Your other option is to stay and be miserable.

<:)> <:)> <:)>
This year will be my fifth on BE. I have been reading my posts over the years and feel quite emotional, its like a flash diary of over 4 years of controlling, abstaining, moderating, blaming others, success, failures and miseries and joy! Just re-reading and appreciating some of the wonderful advice and support I have received over the years. This particular message above struck a cord today. I still am where I am, nothing has changed, however, I have finally accepted things won't change and have found some contentment/peace. I have created a life of my own by taking steps back from my relationship, and being more assertive, which is fine and was great advice, but it is lonely. I try to keep myself closed off, refuse to let my guard down nor react to any provocation, whether drunken or sober. Plan to continue this way, doing the best I can, until kids finish school. Thats my decision and I'm happy with it for now. Thanks BE. Such a great resource!
It's not inevitable whether we drink or not...we make the decision

Posts: 16
Joined: 18 Sep 2019 05:26

Re: When loved ones drink and you don't

Post by Alexendra » 20 Sep 2019 08:44

I know it’s really hard to see our close one in this condition. Hope you now got the solution to this.. My thought is - Rehab center or AA meetings are the best options for those who are facing such issues (w)

Posts: 44
Joined: 09 Nov 2012 21:21
First Sober Date: 21 Sep 2019

Re: When loved ones drink and you don't

Post by Dougal » 30 Sep 2019 01:17

So.......I’ve not been here for ages, but finally I need to do something (again) to help myself. I’ve been a drinker (heavy social) for very many years. My husband of 18 years, more so. We encouraged each other. Now in my 50’s I’ve been attempting to stop or at least cut down without much success as my entire social life is based around drinking. I’m fed up with the alcohol effects of feeling embarrassed, depressed, ill, tired, bloated etc etc. I am delighted to say that I have managed 9 days AF, today being the hardest....but I succeeded!
My husband works away a lot so at home alone I can fairly easily manage to remain AF if I’m in the right frame of mind by keeping myself busy, drinking fizzy soft drinks and tea and rewarding my soberness with ice cream! Previously though I would just sit at home and drink, not always that much but too much to be doing every day.
My husband will easily find a reason to go to the pub (it’s in walking distance).........”got to talk to someone about something” (couldn’t possibly use the phone - no?) and tonight no exception, and tonight’s consumption was a 4 pints. Then he comes home, pours himself a G&T or 2 and finishes off with a large glass of wine - then snores like a walrus all night long! I don’t suppose that’s a whopping load of units, and not every night is in the pub but every night at home it would be something similar. He’s goes to bed drunk......who knows what goes on when he’s away? He doesn’t drink during the day, it starts in the evening - and for that reason I think he thinks it’s’s just social. Maybe it is ok.....maybe I actually am the one who’s wrong?
For the best part of a few months I’ve been more withdrawn socially as I’ve noticed that often no-one actually values my presence, I’m talked over constantly and have to shout to be heard. On really bad nights I’m then verbally assaulted by my OH at home as he’s been irritated by me about something. I’m left feeling broken, worthless and sob myself to sleep in the spare room.
So there we have it. I’m looking to continue on my AF journey, and it’s not easy living with a man who just wants to drink.
Just had to let it all out......thank you! :roll:

User avatar
Posts: 1031
Joined: 16 Aug 2009 17:10
Last Drink Date: 30 Oct 2010
Location: UK

Re: When loved ones drink and you don't

Post by Tai » 30 Sep 2019 06:35

I’m glad you felt able to post Douglas, and I so relate to much of what you’ve written here. My OH is a heavy drinker and like yours he thinks it’s fine because it’s limited to evenings ... except on weekends when we’re with friends in which case it starts earlier. My OHs drinking was one of the “big issues” for me ... I thought it was so big that I’d never be able to stop drinking even though I knew I needed to ... well, I say I knew, what I actually knew was that my level of drinking was harming me and others, and I wanted the harm to stop.

Stopping is not easy when your OH is a drinker and your social time is focussed around drinking. I found it very hard, especially at first. But as I started to build sober time with days turning into weeks and then months things started to change in my life. I started to wake up in the mornings without that all consuming sense of dread, guilt, shame etc. I remembered everything I’d said and done the previous day and evening, no blank or fuzzy bits ... no need to mentally reconstruct to see if I’d done or said anything untoward.

As drinkers we spend a fair amount of time with our minds centred on planning, doing and dealing with the aftermath of our own drinking ... it’s even more complicated when our OH is a heavy drinker too because it facilitates our own. And it’s a ready reason or excuse we can use to not deal with our own drinking too. That’s why I’m so pleased that you are on day 9 <:)> I think that’s a terrific start and I hope you will continue to make progress in building those sober muscles to see you through the days ahead. Dougal, it really does get easier and even if it seems next to impossible some days remember that you are doing this for you. We never ever regret a sober day, but I bet you’re like me and can count innumerable regrets from our drinking days.
A little knowledge that acts is worth infinitely more than much knowledge that is idle.
Khalil Gibran

User avatar
Posts: 6059
Joined: 09 Mar 2016 11:06
Last Drink Date: 04 Jan 2015
Location: Kent

Re: When loved ones drink and you don't

Post by Lush4life » 30 Sep 2019 13:28

Dougal, it's tough but doable to give up drinking and live with someone that's drinks heavily (I do)
My husband has on numerous occasions been abusive also, although of late that's improved somewhat.
The main problem I've found is the sheer boredom of being in the company of a drunk and the repetitive , borish behavior.
So I just try to keep busy myself, new hobbies etc .
Hoping overtime he will slow down in this regard cos his hangovers are certainly more evident the older he gets.
As has been said many times before, it's us that's changed, not them.
Do this for yourself my friend; I'm nearly 5 years sober now and can honestly say its the best, but hardest (at times) thing I've ever done.
However the sober rewards have been fantastic, no question, I have a life and not a mere existence.
I haven't achieved any fantastic things like climbing a mountain or gone off on a retreat and "found myself" just am living a good life, being present for my family that's been the real gift both for them and me.
You know , I've just written the above and I actually don't agree with what I've written!!!
I have indeed climbed a mountain, and found myself and all without leaving my surroundings , yes I bloody well have \:)/
You can too, wishing you, strength,courage determination.
I have respect from those that love me and I now, finally, finally I have earnt respect for myself.
Sobriety is never owned ; it's rented
And rent is due Every day.

Posts: 911
Joined: 01 Nov 2014 07:49

Re: When loved ones drink and you don't

Post by serend » 07 Oct 2019 14:20

I feel familiar with all that is being said here but with the added guilt that I want to leave my husband due to his drinking. I think I have maybe lost respect for him, but sit here saying that as a drinker constantly battling trying to stop myself. I notice in the posts below separating doesn't seem to be mentioned, and I don't think I'd ever be brave enough to it (and would fear the regret). I have had great advice on BE from a number of people previously but nothing seems to change. If choices aren't made I guess life will perhaps just meander on like this until something dramatic causes it to change. I hate what I have let alcohol do to my family :(
It's not inevitable whether we drink or not...we make the decision

User avatar
Posts: 7977
Joined: 18 Apr 2014 16:01
Last Drink Date: 28 Dec 2012
Location: UK

Re: When loved ones drink and you don't

Post by Shadowlad » 07 Oct 2019 19:21

Hi Serend <:)>

Just wanted to send a hug and hopefully some encouraging words. Sometimes people do need to separate if all other options have been tried and tested. Its a big decision i know, and you may not want to take this step. Would it help you to write down more of your thoughts and feelings here (or in a journal) so that you can work out the best way forward ? Sometimes just getting things off your chest it a relief, and injects some clarity and strength. Please know that you are stronger than you believe right now, and there is a way forward. You are not alone <:)>

Much love, nicky xx
Life is 10% what happens to us and 90% how we react to it.

Dennis P. Kimbro

Post Reply