Problem With Spouses Drinking

Some alcoholics still have families when they get to AA. This is a place to ask questions and share experiences about relating to family members sober, especially when newly sober. (If you are not an alcoholic, please use the "Our Friends and Families" forum.)

Problem With Spouses Drinking

Postby JerryE815 » Mon Jan 26, 2015 11:52 am

Hello Everyone, My name is Jerry and I am an alcoholic.

I have a hard time with my wife drinking. She was my partner in crime. I have been sober for 2 years and we recently have had our 3rd child which put a wrench in her drinking. Those 9 months were the best times I have ever had with her. She is not out of control yet but I see the progression beginning. It infuriates me to see her drink. It feels like such a slap in the face. We have two other children (5&6) and I do not want alcohol around them. We have just had our first fight in a while about this as it has been boiling up for me. I could tell she was buzzed yesterday and she didn't tell the truth about where she was going and obviously had stopped for a drink somewhere. I ran this by my sponsor and he is well aware of my problem with this. I take it to my higher power and pray about it and for her but I cant seem to shake it. My sponsors wife is in AA and I don't feel like he has any experience with this situation. I've run it by some guys in my HG and still no good feedback. Just wondering if anybody out there has any experience that they can share and what they are doing to deal with it. Its obvious she doesn't want to stop drinking and I cannot make her do anything.....

Thanks
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Re: Problem With Spouses Drinking

Postby avaneesh912 » Mon Jan 26, 2015 12:20 pm

Jerry,
Welcome aboard. Few questions, when you sobered up, were you forced into this? Or did the desire come from within? And also do you understand the powerlessness and un-manageability of step one?
Show him, from your own experience, how the peculiar mental condition surrounding that first drink prevents normal functioning of the will power (Alcoholics Anonymous, Page 92)
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Re: Problem With Spouses Drinking

Postby JerryE815 » Mon Jan 26, 2015 5:33 pm

Thanks. The desire to stop was within and yes I understand step 1.
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Re: Problem With Spouses Drinking

Postby Duke » Mon Jan 26, 2015 5:49 pm

Hi Jerry. Welcome.

Boy, do I relate. Drinking buddies - check. Lying about her drinking - check. Was convinced she was a budding alcoholic - check.

Yet, with all that, what I have to relate is that the hardest, but one of the most valuable lessons I've learned is that my wife's drinking wasn't then, isn't now and will never be any of my business.

I was relieved to find when I accepted her as she was and quit judging and monitoring her, that she's a pretty normal drinker. She's a great partner and mother and we just celebrated our thirty ninth anniversary.

I don't know if your wife has a problem or not. What I know beyond a shadow of a doubt is that it won't mean anything for you to decide for her.

I spent a lot of time on the phone and meeting with friends in the program during my early days to learn how to let it go. It took a long time, but was well worth the effort.

Hope that helps.
"If you are humble nothing will touch you, neither praise nor disgrace, because you know what you are.", Mother Teresa
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Re: Problem With Spouses Drinking

Postby ann2 » Tue Jan 27, 2015 1:16 am

Seriously, you need to go to Al-Anon and get some feedback! AA is great and AA friends are great and the AA program is great, but there is special help in Al-Anon that is only in Al-Anon. You may not need to attend regularly, but you DO need to go and see how others are living with active alcoholics.

Like the others here, I can't pass judgement on whether your wife is alcoholic or not, nor whether that would mean that you have a "right" to get upset about her drinking. Honestly, none of that matters. What matters is what you can do about the feelings you are dealing with now. Thanks to Al-Anon, there are LOTS of options.

Ann
"If I don't take twenty walks, Billy Beane send me to Mexico" -- Miguel Tejada
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Re: Problem With Spouses Drinking

Postby Tommy-S » Tue Jan 27, 2015 2:36 am

Hello Jerry,

Good responses...

When I took my 1st Step with my sponsor and admitted I was powerless over Alcohol, that included me and everyone else on the planet... I am just as powerless over someone else's drinking as I am over mine. (We don't diagnose anyone in AA, because that's practicing medicine.)

Doesn't mean I have to accept an unacceptable situation, though. I have found, as our founders wrote, the best time to have a talk with someone struggling over the drink is when they are hang over or remorseful about their drinking...IF They Are.

I have little to no control over others, and the spiritual axiom reminds me "If I have a problem with....", I have THE problem. Dealing with 'them' usually creates resentments. Dealing me ME keeps me Sober and relatively sane.

And as Ann shared, Alanon can help you deal with some of what's going on with you, as it did for me when I was married to an Alcoholic. They helped me keep my focus on ME. (We ended up divorced because she was unable or unwilling to stop so I had to cut my losses. Today, that's OK)

It works, IF we work it.

Thanks... Tommy
Together, we don't have to cave in or wimp out to that Fatal First One, no matter what today!
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Re: Problem With Spouses Drinking

Postby JerryE815 » Tue Jan 27, 2015 8:36 am

Wow! Thanks for the wonderful feedback. I really do appreciate it. Reading your replies is reassuring. I will take your suggestions and try Al-Anon.
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