A spouse who still drinks

I’ve been battling my alcoholism off on. AA is a unbelievable! It has always worked. My husband is also an alcoholic. But won’t join me in the program. And his drinking is what almost always causes my relapse. I love him but just don’t know what to do? Or I guess I do know but, it just hurts so bad to think I may have to leave him. Any advice?

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No advise per se I’ll leave that to someone better suited to give appropriate advice,I will just remind you that we only have control over other own recovery, you cannot control your partner’s drinking and if you do have an expectation for him to stop then if he doesn’t this will just lead to resentment. Unmet expectations lead to resentments. Maybe tell him how it affects you but try doing it calmly.
You can stay sober even if he is still drinking, there are plenty of people here who have managed it. No one can make us drink or drug, keep telling yourself that. :+1::slightly_smiling_face:

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Your so right. I just need to concentrate on my on sobriety. Sometimes that is easy to forget. Nothing is more important. Thank you.

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I was going to respond to this, but I don’t think it can be said any better than how @Pants said it. Great advice!

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I wrote this 3 days ago to someone else.

Dazercat

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My wife of 36 years is still drinking. I turned 60 this year and I got my first 79 days ever. It was hard at first cuz wifey is still drinking. I got a lot of good advice here. I even hid this app from her. Then like an adult and suggestions from people on here I finally talked to her and told her how important it was for me. It was a great conversation. I told her about the app and my support group here. But she also let me know she’s still gonna drink. I got 2 grown up kids in recovery. I’ve learned the only sobriety I can control is my own. It’s getting so much easier, with the wife still drinking, now that I got a couple of months sober. I think for both of us. Hang in there it does get easier. With the spouse anyway. Sometimes I catch myself eyeballing her martinis and wish I could have one. But I know one leads to 6 or 10 of them. And I don’t miss the hangovers. I use to get them bad and often.
:pray:t2::heart:

However the last few days with this CV and the shit show going on in our government wifey has been upping the cosmo count each afternoon and passing out on the couch after dinner. I feel sad and lonely. But it doesn’t make me want to drink. Only I can make myself want to drink. And right now with all this shit going on would be a great excuse to drink. And I’d usually drink a lot. But it wouldn’t change a darn thing. It wouldn’t make anything better. Hang in there. Your worth it. It does get easier.
:pray:t2::pray:t2::heart:

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@Sassyrocks
Has been very helpful with post like this.
Sassyrocks

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Hey there, I wanted to share these threads with you about spouses who drink (mine does)…

Does your partner still drink? Some threads you may find helpful :

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@Pants has said all that needs saying really.
We can only have control over our own sobriety!
As we know ourselves, we would never be told about our drinking. I laughed at my wife whenever she suggested a period of sobriety.
At first she was very supportive when I did actually decide to get sober, now not so much.
Now she sits there and drinks in front of me and I have no qualms about her doing it. Well apart from how it changes her, but then, that’s another story, another whole other question- " do I love her enough to put up with her getting drunk and becoming a person I don’t really like?"
As I said a whole different subject to my mind.
I have no qualms with her drinking in front of me, of there being alcohol in the same room as me, because I don’t drink.
I made my peace with the fact that I don’t drink but other people do. And I can’t change that.
Worrying about it can cause resentment and anger. Two things a recovering alcoholic doesn’t need.

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So true. Everything u said there @Geo. I think I’m just about there too. It really doesn’t bother me most of the time. I just feel sad for her. I can’t change her and after 36 years what r ya gonna do right :man_shrugging:
Just love them.
:pray:t2::heart:

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Totally agree with you apart from the sometimes wishing you could drink.
To my mind that only leads one way, but, as they say your milage may vary!
I don’t miss drinking at all, even this CV thing has not changed that.

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Exactly. ,30 years here. So something has to be working! :facepunch:

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Wishing I could have “A Drink”. Just one. I mean her martini looks really good. But I know I won’t have just one drink. So I don’t wish I could be drinking. But once and awhile I wish I could have a nice glass of Cabernet. But I know I’d drink the whole bottle or two.

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I suppose when you put it like that, very occasionally I do miss the opportunity for a nice Malt. A Tasker 10 year old.

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Wow… you really put it in perspective for me. I appreciate your response so much. It’s nice to know your not alone in this fight to stay sober. But also to know I’m not alone with a spouse that still drinks. Thank you soooo much! :heart::pray:

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Don’t leave him. Lead him.

Lead him by being a constant example of firm sober love. Your sobriety is your responsibility. Own it, 100%.

No one could make me quit, until I wanted to. No one can make me drink, because I don’t want to. It’s that simple.

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What wonderful advice from everyone!
can’t you remove yourself from the situation so you don’t have to watch another person drink? I don’t mean hide yourself from a place in your own home but can’t you leave the room that so you don’t have to see it? With me being sober and if somebody else in my home were drinking I don’t think I could just sit there and watch it! Just my personal opinion. I would definitely have to at least leave the room. Then the sad part is you become a hostage in your own home. I pray things get better for you!

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Thanks. I had a lot of help from the good people here to put it in perspective. I couldn’t have done it without them. They deserve the credit.
:pray:t2::heart:

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Hey there, I am sorry you are struggling with your husband and relationship. I have a similar situation with my husband. He still drinks, sometimes a lot. For me, it was definitely a struggle figuring out how to get and stay sober while he was still drinking. In fact, for a long time, I blamed my inability to get sober on him drinking. How could I not drink when he was drinking? Well, some nice people here helped me to understand that my drinking was my responsibility and in my control and his drinking was his responsibility and in his control. One was not dependent on the other. That made sense to me and helped me reframe my work toward sobriety.

The second part is your relationship. Only you know the heart of your relationship and of your husband. Is he a kind and loving man? A good husband and father? Does he treat you well and respect you? Do you respect and cherish him?

For me, I know my husband is a perfectly imperfect human, doing his best where he is at right now. I know he is kind and loving, tho he certainly has his moments (as we all do). Our relationship, while not even close to perfect, is a huge positive in our lives and brings so much to both of us. He is a good man, flawed, as we are.

Idk if any of that resonates, but did want to pass on that it can be possible to live with and love someone who drinks. It may not be easy, but it is achievable. :heart: Sending hugs.

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Everything that she (@Sassyrocks) said :point_up_2: Very similar to my own situation. I begged my man to quit with me bc I thought it was the only way. I was wrong and now 132 alcohol free, while he still drinks everyday. It can be done. Separate yourself from your relationship in this way and you’ll begin to learn a lot about yourself. Especially with the help of AA. That’s when everything really turned around for me was when I began doing the Steps. After 4 and 5 I felt like great release and understanding come over me. You can only control yourself. So you have to learn exactly how you can do that. All the best moving forward :heart:

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Very happy you found that same (or similar) reframe that I did. It was a big aha moment for me. I did also realize that a lot of our previous issues were from MY behavior and issues with drinking, not his. Another aha moment.

It’s good to know others who have been able to navigate this dynamic positively and lovingly (@Dazercat, you as well!).

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My wife and myself were drinking buddy’s and both chronic relapsers in AA. I spent 20 years in and out of meetings. ( Minus 10 years in prison ). She spent 5 years in and out. Neither of us ever did the 12 steps but felt we were doing AA. There was something in that bottle that was a solution to life for me. I drank for the effects and the effects made life bearable. I stopped getting the effect and life became unbearable drunk or sober. I would quit she would cause my relapse and Visa verse. Or so we thought. I finally reached that jumping off point. Drunk or sober I didn’t want to live. I returned to the rooms of AA with the desperation of a drowning man. I knew of the obsession and the allergy. I didn’t realize the spiritual malady was also apart of this disease. I wanted real sobriety because abstinence only made my life worse. Being sober was more difficult than being drunk and being drunk didn’t work anymore. I learned that I was defenseless against the first drink. I was not powerful enough on my own to overcome this disease.
It’s an internal disease that centers in the mind. I would think treating it externally would help ( ie: if I move, leave the wife, change jobs etc…) unfortunately changing any of those things still leaves me with me. I drink because I’m an alcoholic. Why does a pig roll in mud? Because he’s a pig. When I got serious about the 12 steps I wanted my own sobriety. I got trough the steps and had a spiritual awakening. The obsession to drink was removed. My sobriety is not contingent upon anyone else. Provided I stay spiritually fit. I have no desire to drink even when I’m around alcohol or people drinking it. I gave a daily design for living and it works for me. My wife is now in rehab and I have stayed with her and love and support her. She drank and used around me while I had already recovered. Seeing my new leash on life and how her insanity had zero effect on my sobriety gave her the desire to have what I have. We have 2 beautiful children and I trust that weather or not she is able to have this great life God will take care of me and my children. I have no control over her sobriety and she has no control over mine. I do not get involved with her program nor do I make demands she gave one. I was done when I was done. No one else could ever have told me to be done. I love my wife and provided myself and my children are not in any physical danger. I will love her even when she’s sick. Love and tolerance is our code. I was once sick too.

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