When I got to Al‑Anon, I was fearful of my alcoholic husband—afraid of his rages, of things he might say to me, of riding in the car with him, and of the possibility he might leave me. I felt hopeless and trapped.
I received the gift of hope at my first Al‑Anon meeting. As I continued going to meetings regularly, reading the literature, and talking to people, I began to learn that I had choices and that I could detach from my husband’s behavior. As I received more serenity, I found I did not have to participate when he was angry, and his temper didn’t hurt me so much. Now sometimes, when I’m doing well, I just say to myself—that’s his disease talking; I don’t have to take it personally.
As I got better at taking care of myself, I chose to do the driving when we were together in the car. After lots of practice, I still hope to one day be able to simply say, “that hurt” when my husband or anyone else says something that stings. While I wait for the ability to say that to arrive, I am at least able to say to myself—that’s their opinion; it doesn’t have to be mine. I also recognize that sometimes my hurts are self-inflicted, and I may need to focus on my part in the situation.
I was fortunate that my spouse found sobriety, and he is my best friend today. We write love letters to each other on a regular basis, which has become a safe way for me to express some of my fears to him. I no longer fear him, nor am I afraid that he’ll leave. I love him “One Day at a Time,” which is all any of us can do, anyway. Each day is precious, and I thank Al‑Anon for giving me a more positive attitude.
By Marina P., Oregon
The Forum, February 2019
My husband lies and sneaks beer, he doesn’t drink alcohol, as in past, his personality gets very nasty, but may be drinking that as well now. When he drinks beer, it’s a lot and he stutters, stumbles, does really stupid things, pretends he is not drunk. He literally guzzles beer. He will volunteer to go downstairs to get something from the freezer and guzzle a beer or two before coming back up. I have caught him guzzling. He can’t help around the house because the only reason he helps is to drink. So would rather have house a mess, rather… Read more »
I read all the stories and I don’t feel alone anymore. I’ve been married to my husband for 6 years now and we have a 4 year old daughter. My husband’s drinking has become progressively worse through the years. He gets very aggressive and loud when he drinks. I try to do the best I can so my daughter doesn’t wake up and see what he is doing and how he’s behaving…. I don’t want her to be scarred for life, but I am at the end of my rope here. I am so tired of walking on egg shells… Read more »
Believe me I have been thru all of this. My husband has put me thru hell. Many times I have wanted to leave. But then I remember that he is a great guy when he isn’t drinking. He is evil and disgusting when he drinks. He has passed out in front of the grandkids ages 5 and 3. Just went thru crap a week ago. Told him I was leaving. He was gonna lose everyone that mattered to him. At that time he didn’t care. Next morning he woke up and realized he really messed up big time. He hasn’t… Read more »
Electronic meetings are available for those unable to attend face-to-face meetings
How do you get to a meeting when you work all day and your spouse would ask where you are going and get mad? I think he’d threaten to leave if “that’s what you think I am.”
To find a meeting near you, please visit https://al-anon.org/al-anon-meetings/find-an-al-anon-meeting/
and enter your city and province for listings in Canada.
My husband has always been a drinker, but since we emigrated to Canada and the stress of finding work and earning money has made him much more dependent on drink. Every evening I return from work, I dread to come home. He drinks to he falls asleep and my son hears him pacing and swearing. I don’t know what to do and have no one to talk to as we have only been living in Canada 9 years and he slowly has got worse. I can’t tell my family back in the u.k – it would be nice to belong… Read more »
Thank you for the information. My husband is an alcoholic but will not admit it. I am searching for a group to help me build better coping skills. His raging are getting worse and the fact that he does not remember the events scares me.
hello to all, I am really struck by everyone’s story and how hard it has been. This is the first time I have posted and I have not as yet been to an Al-Anon meeting although I plan to. I am not sure how these postings go so I’m sorry if this is not the right way. I am feeling utterly broken about what has happened to me around my husbands drinking. He gets drunk a lot and gets really abusive and forgets this in the morning. So I started recording his abuse, in the main because I felt I… Read more »
Thanks guys, for your stories and words. My husband is a sort of a dry drunk and I am losing my patience with his nearly constant defensive weirdness. I am in the middle of a kind of bout of his where he has walked out. I really appreciate the words I just read about progress not perfection and remembering it’s the disease talking. I need, right now to be patient with myself. I am just exhausted!!! Thanks people.
Great comments I can relate with these people especially Michelle.
I am lost. I feel hopeless. If I hear him put me down one more time. Call me names. Tell me it’s all about me. I am disrespectful. I a scumbag. I am about ready to have a nervous breakdown.
I work. I pay all the bills. I know he is sick. I know he drinks because of his pain and illness. But it is getting worse
I’m so glad that I found this group. I am going insane with my husband’s drinking, cough syrup using, and psychiatric issues. I’m the punching bag and then i have to accept finally I’m an enabling codependent problem myself? Seriously I felt like my head was going to spontaneously combust. I have a lot to accept. I don’t even know how I’ve been handling the amount of raw eviscerating pain I’m in on a daily basis. A lot of I statements here. Sigh. Psychological torture as a normal part of life – how did I get here.
When my husband was”deep” in his alcoholism, I was grateful to be in Al-Anon and have a sponsor. My husband relapsed multiple times and stayed in my marriage because I knew he was a great person. As I continued to work through the 12 steps and attend as many Al-Anon and open AA meetings I could, my focus was on my recovery. As my husband struggled to get sober; I would ask my sponsor what I should do and she say to me…only you know how much you can take. I am still married to my husband who is 10… Read more »
It’s 3:50a.m. My husband is in denial and has many deep unresolved issues. He refuses to take responsibility and I am barely hanging on. I have put myself aside and tolerated for too long. He called me at 11:00pm to say he was sorry but he got arrested and I needed to come bail him out! I reluctantly agreed with the stipulation that he would not be coming home and my sister offered to let him stay with her. She went with me for the drive 75 minute away for support. I paid bail he was released and then we… Read more »
My partner has demons he’s never addressed from his childhood and beyond. The only coping skill he knows is alcohol. I become the target of all of his hatred when he drinks, and it hurts a lot. I had surgery a couple months ago and he’s completely sabotaged my rehabilitation. But I let him do it. He’s lost his job and he’s hurting and my heart cries for his. While we wait the ridiculously long period for his psychiatric appt I feel the need to allow him to stay with me. He promises to stop drinking but gets bored or… Read more »
Many family members struggle with how to deal with their loved one’s problem drinking and coming together in Al-Anon groups has helped them find the support they need. If you decide to try an Al-Anon meeting, you’ll find out, like so many people have, that you are not alone. You will be surprised when you hear other people sharing their story, and it is almost identical to your own story. No one will tell you what to do, but they will share what they did and how it helped them. If you would like to try a meeting in your… Read more »
Just need someone to talk to my husband has become a raging alcoholic don’t know what to do anymore feeling very alone he has been intoxited for the past 4 days around the clock
Thank you for sharing. I think that recognizing that it’s the disease talking is a form of detachment. Not always easy. I hear progress not perfection in your sharing too.
I have those same feelings…someone else understands.