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I'm new here and would appreciate advice
February 13, 2006
11:51 pm
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Goodatcards
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My husband is a functioning alcoholic. When I read about some of the behaviors, it could have been written about him. He drinks a minimum of a bottle of wine a night. Weekends, two bottles +.
He jumped my 19 yr. old son last Feb. after 2 bottles of wine for the remote. Hasn't spoken to my son in ONE YEAR. A week ago he went after my son because he didn't eat a leftover meal from the night before. Son knocked his front teeth out. Husband called police to have son arrested. Police did not arrest son as 1) son was defending himself 2) Husband was drunk.
Husband issued ultimatum that son leaves the house. Son just started sophomore year of college. Dean's list, good friends, no smoking, drinking, drugs, teaches Tae Kwon Do, politically active, good guy.
I will not kick my son out. He has never tried to be a father.

Now husband has issued another ultimatum.....my mother comes over 4 times a month (sometimes less) for Sunday dinner. She is 70, works full time, comes over at 5:30-leaves at 10:00. He is in bed everynight at 6:30 to 7:00. He is only around her 1 to 1 and half hours.
This is my 2nd marriage. Thoughts??

February 14, 2006
4:15 am
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revelation
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Look, it sounds to me like your husband definity has a drink problem. No matter how much you beg, no matter how much you cry, be nice, walk on eggshells whatever...you CANNOT make him change, you CANNOT stop him from drinking. It won't work like that. He has to want to change...its up to him. Now, are you willing to subject yourself and your sons to this mans controlling and abusive behaviour until then? If so, go ahead, wait and wait and wait in agony for the day he finally decides to get help...wait until he takes all your spirit and your sons...wait until he makes you lose the will to live...afterall, isn't that what us codependents do? Never give up hope...do you walk around convincing yourself of any of the following:

"He loves me, he will change for me"

"Deep down he's a nice guy, he just has a few problems at the moment"

"If I am really nice and kind and my sons don't step out of line, everything will be ok"

"This is my fault, I'm not a good wife"

"This is my sons fault, he shouldn't answer back"

"If we were a better family, my husband wouldn't drink so much"

"If I make my home more peaceful/calm/clean/comfortable my husband will stop drinking"

"If I were a better wife my husband would stop drinking"

If so, stop, stop it now...none of the statements above are true. Your husband drinks because he has unresolved issues, your husband bully's your son because he has unresolved issues. He needs to go and get help, I know that, you know that, your son knows that...and thats just great...but it means nothing until your husband knows it. And no matter how many times you tell him, no matter how many self-help books you give him to read....until he figures it out for himself he will continue to do this. Are you willing to subject yourself to that? If you continue to adapt your life to suit his "ultimatums" he's going to drag you all into his world with him. You need to make your decision, what I would do is give him the time and space he needs to work out his problems....pack his bags, leave them at the door and tell him you are not willing to live like this. (If you are afraid of him then leave a note). Then take some time for yourself to think about what you want...it will also give him a chance to see what life is like without you...if he doesn't like it so much, maybe he might start to think about why you don't want him in the house, maybe it will be a wake-up call for him, but you can't wish and hope for that, maybe he's not ready for the wake-up call yet...I don't know that and nor do you. But for yourself, for your own peace of mind, ask him to leave...stipulate that if he gets his act together he can come talk to you.

February 14, 2006
9:35 am
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Goodatcards
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Wow........I appreciate you taking the time to repond. Everything you said was true. I consider myself "new" to this. I never knew about co-dependency until 2 weeks ago. I was blown away to see it was me.
I have been caught in the quicksand and just "realized" my nose was at sand level. You are right, I have been an ostrich for years, just hoping and praying things would be all better. Thank you again for your hard-hitting and excellent advice.
I have my first Al-Anon meeting Wednesday and my 2nd meeting witha therapist on Friday. Wish me luck and strength.

February 14, 2006
10:03 am
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terbear
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your husband doesnt sound like a "functional" alcoholic..He's spinning out of control. Maybe its your turn to offer an ultimatium..no treats, no empty promises..sober up or we are out of here..He wont sober up until he starts losing things that mean alot to him..Everybody's bottom is different. But you need to help yourself and your son..It looks like you are taking the necessary steps and I appauld you for that..It takes alot of courage to seek help.

February 14, 2006
1:43 pm
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Goodatcards
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Thank you, TerBear. Your encouraging words mean a lot to me.

February 16, 2006
11:20 am
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Notsure
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I agree with terbear, time for him to stop drinking or hit the highway and if it is his house I think you and your son should leave. You don't need this and your son sounds like he is working hard on making something out of himself so he doesn't need it either.

Regards. Notsure

February 16, 2006
11:43 am
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kathygy
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goodatcards,

It sounds like being around your husband is very toxic for your son. Surely your husband's behavior is very damaging to your son emotionally. Not that its doing you any good either.

I think the priority is to remove your son from the presence of your husband which means leaving your marriage.

Prehaps leaving your husband will shock him into getting help for his alcoholism.

I do think however, although I think it was wrong for your husband to issue an ultimatum about your mother's visits I do feel his feelings about her visits do need to be taken into consideration. But that's besides the point if he you him.

February 17, 2006
12:17 am
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readyforachange
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I can relate to your situation, but I agree with terbear that your husband isn't "functioning". He may be able to hold a job, and look normal to the outside world, but what is going on in your house isn't "functional". His relationship with your son is far from normal or healthy, and his attempting to alienate you from your own mother is manipulative and controlling.

My ex had many of the same behaviors. People thought we had a good marriage and that he was a great guy. He's a teacher and coach, and lots of fun at parties. But at home he was controlling, abusive and out of control. After 17 years of marriage, I filed for divorce. My kids are 15 and 12. My son rarely sees his dad, and will never have a relationship with him. Now that he has no responsibility and no one to answer to, his drinking is out of control. But I am happier and healthier, and so are my kids. I tried for almost 8 years to get him to get help....went to counseling, Alanon, our pastor. Nothing worked, and I now realize that it was because he wasn't ready or willing to change. And he still isn't. But that is not my responsibility, and never was.

I hope you find the strength you are looking for to find the right answer. Hang in there...and keep posting.

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