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User Topic: For Those That Love An Alcoholic
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Default  Posted: 10:45 AM, August 12th (Sunday), 2007View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Thank you for responding. I am having a particularly difficult day.
My H always worked. He is a ______aholic. Alcoholic, workaholic, intense-a-holic. Everything to the extreme. If one is good...two is better type of personality. But that works in the other direction too.
Nothing I say now is valid. Nothing I do is right. If I say I will call from work (for transparency) it is to cover my ass. If I say...feel free to call me...I get "I should call you??? YOU should be calling me!!" WTF?
There is an emotional immaturity that is inherent in alcoholics (at least mine) that is making our reconciliation so difficult. He wants me to tell him...but God help me when I tell him. He wants to know how I feel...but when I say it...truthfully (I was afraid to be honest for far too long..look where THAT got me )then he completely negates it and says it wasn't so!! I say "but that is how I felt about it..."

Vicious circle.

I think it is the alcoholic in him...or maybe it's just him (?)

48 y/o WW
50 y/o BS
Married 27 ys

Posts: 553 | Registered: Nov 2006
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Member # 14016
Default  Posted: 11:10 AM, August 12th (Sunday), 2007View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Oh 14-he still appears to be suffering from what we call here as "stinkin thinkin".

So you did wrong by him,but you're remorseful and giving it your best shot.What more can you do.

I see this as he's abusing you still and have to ask why you want to continue living with this.

I so know what its like to have been married such a long time.walking on eggshells in case he lifts a drink etc.

I still love my A but it was never enough and don't see why I should just exist for the rest of my life because of it.

Mine finally got a decent job five years ago and like yours got totally absorbed in it-just another thing I was taking a back seat to and so I agree it could be another side of the addictive personality but there again why should you suffer some more.

Stay safe

The strong are sometimes wrong but the weak are never free.

Posts: 174 | Registered: Mar 2007 | From: scotland
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Default  Posted: 11:35 AM, August 12th (Sunday), 2007View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Yes..maybe it is stinkin thinkin.
I don't know.
It's frustrating. Now that his alcoholism is an "illness" (and I am fine with that...I understand) it is the biggest excuse for years of bullshit..."but I was "sick"..." Sometimes I want to say, "Yea, but it was one helluva a good time while it lasted..."
I am not unsympathetic to his alcoholism...really. Even our MC says it is miraculous that I don't EVER throw up in his face 20 years of drinking. In fact, I rarely mention it. We had about 6 MC sessions before I said...oh yea, and my H is an alcoholic.... I support his sobriety, 100% But somedays I just want to scream "YOU'RE NOT PERFECT EITHER"!!
Sorry...I'm just so frustrated.

48 y/o WW
50 y/o BS
Married 27 ys

Posts: 553 | Registered: Nov 2006
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Default  Posted: 6:03 AM, August 17th (Friday), 2007View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

14th I can identify with what you have mentioned.
Your needs for attention get pushed far back.Everything is about the alcoholic.
What makes it worse is that both of my parents are recovering alcoholics.
So I have had the crap come back and bite me in my ass big time.

Somebody explain the stinkin thinkin thing to me.

I am WS from Feb 2004-April 2004 first then a BS.
Together since 1981,married 1987 to present.Divorced,March 2012,for financial reasons, but still together until end of October 2012.Now hes having a midlife crisis and living away from home.

Posts: 4625 | Registered: Jul 2004 | From: Maine
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Default  Posted: 6:05 AM, August 17th (Friday), 2007View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

OK,So he has quit again because he needs to drop rapid weight for the Navy weigh in he has next weekend.
It finally hit him that his drinking is making him fat that and the fact he aint no teenager anymore.So no more drinking and not gaining weight from it.
Too bad he cant realize his drinking has ruined most of our relationship,plus his anger issue.
He has the I hate everyone,blame everyone one but me problem.

I am WS from Feb 2004-April 2004 first then a BS.
Together since 1981,married 1987 to present.Divorced,March 2012,for financial reasons, but still together until end of October 2012.Now hes having a midlife crisis and living away from home.

Posts: 4625 | Registered: Jul 2004 | From: Maine
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Default  Posted: 1:21 PM, August 17th (Friday), 2007View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

14, I can totally relate to what you're saying. My husband has been sober for 20 years but it's all about him. I believe my husband is what they call a dry drunk. He's just changed his addiction. It's now AA ALL of the time. He goes to at least 3 meetings a week and his sponsor tells him he needs to go to more! His higher power is now AA. But he doesn't see it.
I know about the emotional immaturity. He's been beating me up emotionally for the past 4 years for my A. I told him if he worked his marriage like he does his sobriety, we would still be together. Of course, he disagrees. He'll tell me what he thinks but forget if I have any feelings.
Anyway, I could go on and on but I just wanted to say you're not alone.

Posts: 1557 | Registered: Feb 2006 | From: Nevada
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Default  Posted: 12:42 PM, August 18th (Saturday), 2007View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

The original link for those new to this forum. Here you will find useful links, posts and information on addiction from those of us who love, or once loved, an alcoholic.

His name is Robert Paulsen

Posts: 1725 | Registered: Aug 2005 | From: NC
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Default  Posted: 6:18 PM, August 20th (Monday), 2007View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage


Stinkin thinkin is the "feel sorry for me" "I'm a victim" mentality that many alcoholics have.

Is your husband in AA?

I know what you mean exactly. My husband has switched his addictions also. After he quit drinking (we were married 20 years when he quit) he smoked obsessively, after he quit smoking he abused's always something it seems. I buy candy for the kids and I hear "You know I can't have chocolate in the house!!" WTF??? Now it's like the obsession is ME.
I just find him so difficult to reason with sometimes. I could scream. And I have been doing it so long that I didn't even realize how insane it all is. The victim mentality and his total amnesia of anything he has ever done wrong makes me ill sometimes. This is almost no substance on earth he hasn't touched that he didn't go on to abuse.
And HE'S SOBER...Can you imagine if he were still drinking???
I went to AlAnon once and had a bad experience. But I have heard good things about it. Has anyone gone and found that it helps??

NCguy - thanks for the link. I will check it out.

ETA: are the WW?? Hmmmm....interesting. Can I PM you?

[This message edited by 14thebooks at 6:19 PM, August 20th (Monday)]

48 y/o WW
50 y/o BS
Married 27 ys

Posts: 553 | Registered: Nov 2006
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Default  Posted: 4:39 PM, August 22nd (Wednesday), 2007View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Dr. Lynne Namka's book Avoiding Relapse: Catching Your Inner Con
identifies 14 parts of our inner con (which some call the imp). Once we know and understand these parts, we can name them and address them when they start to distract and distress us.

Can you relate to any of these parts?

Chapter 2 : Fear Based Parts

1) Inner Pusher: workaholic part the compensates fatigue by drinking.
"I've worked so hard I can ___."
"I deserve to ___".

2) Inner Victim: snivler argues nothing ever works for it.
"It's not fair."
"I never get to have fun anymore."
"Poor me that I can't drink and they can."

3) Helpless Sucker: creates a sense of powerlessness about alcoholism.
"This addiction is stronger than I am."
"I don't have the will power not to drink."
"There's nothing else for me to do but drink."

4) Part believing conflict is bad so avoid anger: avoidance part numbs out with drinking.
"To calm me down, I'll have a drink."
"I can't stand being frustrated, so I'll mellow out with a drink.'

5) Inner Narcissit feeling entitled: "I deserve to drink b/c ___.'
'I owe me a good time b/c ___.'
Searches for any reason to drink.

6) Feeling Hurt & Betrayed part: disappointments in relationships become the excuse to drink.
They don't understand me so ...
Hurt and anger justify drinking.

7) Introverted Needs Social Lubricant: uptight part drinks to feel more at ease socially, to loosen up, to be more comfortable with others.

8) Part Dwells on Rotten Past & Predicts Rotten Future: The rotten childhood part convinces that you will always be as limited as your past.
'I can't help it b/c my dad ___.'
'It's in my genes so I can't change it'
'I wasn't loved enough by my parents so I am unlovable.'
The error in thinking is that a terrible past means a terrible future.

9) Inner Impulsive Kid Can't Delay Gratification: must have what it wants when it wants it!
'Pressure is building up & I can't take this.'
It feels it must drink to release discomfort and distress.

10) Inner Wild & Crazy Part: can't stand to be bored, craves stimulation, needs party to have fun.
'Bring on that rush.'

11) Rebellious Child excited by Being Bad: delights in feeling good about being bad, fueled by excitement of the chase, acts out defiantly, lives on the edge with attraction to risks, immerses in culture that reinforces drinking.
I can handle this.'
'My way is the best way.'

12) Part Grabs Hold of any Reason to Relapse: looks for reasons and agrees with any rationale.

13) Creature of Habit to Get Out of Discomfort: Bodily discomfort soothed by drinking.
'I can't stand this.
It is too much to bear.'

14) Master Justifier Who Blames:
'I know I shouldn't have ___, but ___' 'I'm sorry that I ___, but ___'
I didn't want to ___, but ___.'
Sometimes you speak the truth in the first part of the sentence, but blame another for your problem in the second part of the sentence.

Chapter 8 addresses the Positve Cast of Characters. Dr. Namka writes, "Fortunately you have all sorts of inner characters to help you achieve your goal of sobriety. These parts of you are positive and rooting for recovery. You are not in this noble fight alone. You have many resilient parts..." (pg 41)

This 100 page book is very easy to read with pages that have a lot of white space for making notes. You can read more about this book on Dr. Lynne Namka's website at

It is a website worth browsing as it has a lot to offer about addressing stress and anger in ourselves, our loved ones, our workplaces, etc.

To Do No Harm

Posts: 5608 | Registered: Jul 2003 | From: planet earth
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Default  Posted: 2:44 PM, September 2nd (Sunday), 2007View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I fell in love or lust (not sure what it was) with an alcoholic, having never really ever come into contact with one before. I just feel so empty now, I am told that alcoholics are master manipulators, they are incapable of a true relationship, that they are complete liars. I had an A with one, how stupid of me. He just knew how to charm his way into my life - he was so attentive, so charming, I feel used and dupped. I still cant imagine that there are human beings who are like this (ok he finally admitted to me that he has NEVER been faithful to his W). Now he is saying that I persued him relentlessly especially when he was drunk and that I should have known better!!!!!!!!!! He certainly has turned my life upside down - love/lust is turning to hate as he wins over friends and even has his W saying "shame he is an alcoholic - she used him!!". He eventually had me thinking that that maybe if I loved him enough and gave him a reason to give up the bottle, that he would get better. SILLY ME - now I have a marriage to a good man which is in tatters, and all for a con artist. OK, I was a willing party, I know that, but can a man really lie through his teeth to get a woman in to bed? Sorry - I have only been with one man since high school - my H - until this OM came along.

Sad thing is that my H also feels sorry for OM, and is concerned that he is throwing away everything - he also is struggling with the fact that I just was in the wrong place at the wrong time and that OM is a con artist who never loved me. For some wierd reason, my H could not live with the fact that a man had persued me, slept with me and could never have loved me.

My heart goes out to the BS and I am so sorry that woman like me are arrogant enough to feel that we can make the difference.

Me: WW /BS
Him: BS/WH
Children: 3
Status: I am not sure - ask him!

Posts: 71 | Registered: Aug 2007 | From: South of North
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Default  Posted: 10:28 PM, September 18th (Tuesday), 2007View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

From the post below: "As an alcoholic, I can tell you that's what we do! We do it because you don't think we will do it....You think we're like other people but we're not.... "
Some of us decide to leave, we go through hell, we "move on".....and yet, the wound stays open. Past relationships with addicts seem to haunt so many of us for so long. We feel regret and shame, even after the "ending", whereas the addict heaps on more pain for longer than we can understand.

Outside of SR, I've rarely seen an exchange on this topic more eloquent than the one below. "Endings" with addicts can be as insane as the relationships themselves.

The writer of this letter could easily be someone here at SR, we know her so well...or she IS us.

The man who replies is a very wise straight-shooter, an alcoholic in recovery who tells it like it is.

This is a very long post, I hope it is OK. The article appears in, which is "subscription only", so since some of you would not be able to read it online I decided to paste it here.


Dear Cary,

A few years ago at the age of 49, I decided to leave my alcoholic husband. I'm a rarity. Studies show that of 10 women married to alcoholics, only one will leave, while out of 10 men married to alcoholics, only one will stay. I've always supported myself, so while it was wrenching for me to leave my familiar prison, I was reasonably sure I could rebuild my life and start over as an unmarried woman. There are no children involved, by the way.

I will spare you the details of how wretchedly intolerable the situation was and how justified I was in leaving him, but they involved the usual alcoholic atrocities and then some: lying, gambling, refusing to take responsibility, financial disaster, verbal abuse, betrayal of trust, denial, physical and emotional estrangement, shifting of blame. I felt I had to leave him to save my own life, and since he blamed me for everything bad about his life, I thought he wouldn't object. He didn't; he helped me find my own house and move. Of course I'd already tried everything wives of alcoholics try: pleading, bribing, screaming, co-drinking, codependency, threats, attempted intervention and, eventually, thanks to my Al-Anon group, detachment.

After I left and filed for divorce, telling my low-key attorney that I expected an uncomplicated, mutually agreed-upon if not amicable split, he hired the "best" divorce firm in this city and proceeded to make our divorce unnecessarily horrific, brutal, expensive and protracted. He didn't fight to keep me; he sought to punish me financially and emotionally for divorcing him. (Leaving was allowed; divorcing him was not to be borne.) After two years, the magistrate handling our case finally told him to stop filing motions against me. That was two months ago.

I just recently found a good job that will allow me to pay back the debts I incurred in the divorce. I'm living in my own house. I have a new boyfriend who treats me well and does not drink heavily or gamble. My health is much improved and my future no longer looks dreary. I'm right where I always envisioned myself when I used to daydream about how pleasant life could be if I were not married to a depressed alcoholic with a gambling addiction. I've rebuilt my life's foundations and I'm starting to build a new social network. I haven't had a threatening, vitriolic, accusing letter, e-mail or voice mail from the ex in two months. Life is good.

Until the other night, when I heard a sad song about heartbreak and abandonment (Alison Krauss' "Ghost in This House") and it got to me. I felt so sad for him, and I thought about how it must have hurt him when I left. At the time I didn't see how I could have done anything different to get away from a relationship that was killing me slowly, but now I wonder. I did not handle the leaving and divorce with kindness and dignity, as I would like to have done. I did not rise above the situation and treat him like a person with an illness. I was too hurt, too scared and too desperate.

This is the curse of divorcing an alcoholic: You don't get closure. No one can fault you for leaving for one of the "big A" reasons (addiction, abuse, abandonment, adultery), but you don't get, I don't know, maybe "resolution" is the word I'm looking for. Finality. Peace. Serenity. The opportunity to be friends, or at least on civil terms with your ex. Maybe it's lingering codependency that keeps whispering to me that there was something I could have done, not to save my marriage but to end it without so much ugliness and pain.

I loved him once. I'd like to forgive him. But I don't know where he went; the person I loved is gone and only the addiction inhabits his body. He hates me and blames me for everything, including his drinking, even though he will not admit that he has a problem. If I told him I forgave him, he'd say I have nothing to forgive, and he does not forgive me. We had 10 years together; some of them were wonderful, and now they just seem like a waste of time.

I went through hell in the final years and months of my marriage. It was a relief to end it, and I feel reborn. I thought I was past the worst of it and all my tears were shed. Now that he's not harassing me any longer, I'm out of self-preservation mode and I have time for reflection and regret. There is this huge disconnect between my life then and my life now; I've cut myself off completely from the people we both knew and even the industry we both used to work in. In effect, I gave them to him. They were the price I was willing to pay to escape. I don't regret leaving him, only that I acted badly toward him and others while I was struggling with the bitter end of my marriage.

Can you tell me how to move on, reach resolution and forgive myself?

Phoenix (the mythical bird, not the city)

Dear Phoenix,

I am reading this letter and I am going yep, yep, yep, that's classic!

I know I answer a lot of letters about alcoholism, but it is one thing I know inside and out, so when I can't figure out what else to do this is what I do, I go and write about alcoholism.

As an alcoholic, I can tell you that's what we do! We do it because you don't think we will do it. You don't think we're capable of it. You don't think we'd dare. You think we'll forget and move on. You think we're like other people but we're not. You think we've got some shame but we don't. We don't stop when others stop. We don't slow down when others slow down. We just speed up! We will do anything and that's our awesome power.

We will not be deterred by shame or pity or self-consciousness. Whatever happens, we can take it because we've got our medicine. We'll do anything as long as we've got our medicine. We'll take it as far as it can go. We've got the medicine to keep us going. We've got the stuff that kills the conscience so we don't have to stop halfway on account of our little conscience. Conscience? Nah. Watch this. We'll take it where you can't even imagine anybody would want to go. Why? Because we can! Because we're drunk! Because we don't give a *******. You just watch.

And just when you think it's over? Ha! That's when we're just getting started: Have another drinky-poo, we're not even tired, we've been drinking all night and we're still going, and wait till you see what's coming next!

Not only can I channel that voice but I even, in a twisted diabolical alcoholic way, appreciate what he is up to -- the awful terrible spite of it, the wounded, caged-animal desperation of it, the stealthy, secretive, maniacal mad-scientist glee of its sadism and depravity. And beneath it all the whole time I know there is that poor little abused soul, which he can trot out every now and then to win your sympathy and pity. And he will do that if he can; he will put on his little "Howdy Doody Show."

Detach. Detach. Don't get too close or he'll pick your pocket. Forgive yourself for being human. Align yourself with other women who have been there. If he has friends who have sobered up and can commiserate, commiserate with them. You have to heal it. He's not going to help. He's going to make it harder if he can. Don't let him. Heal it up. Use everything you've got.

This guy is not on your side. This guy, as long as he's drinking, you just have to protect yourself from him.

So do not pity this man. Pity, if you wish, those he owes money to. But do not pity this man and do not try to help him. Take care of yourself instead.

It might not feel like it's over, but it's over for you. It's not over for him but it's over for you.

Detach. Detach. Wait. A change is gonna come.

His name is Robert Paulsen

Posts: 1725 | Registered: Aug 2005 | From: NC
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Default  Posted: 10:37 PM, September 18th (Tuesday), 2007View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Find your alcoholic on the chart!

Here is a copy of the Jellinek Chart of the progressive symptoms of alcoholism (and recovery). Hope it can be of help:
This is the "Jellinek Chart of Alcoholism & Recovery", named for Dr. E. M. Jellinek. Dr. Jellinek was one of the pioneers of the disease model of alcoholism during the 1940's and early 1950's.

This copy was originally distributed by the Alcoholism Council of Greater Los Angeles, and appears in the book "Ministering to Alcoholics" by John E. Keller, Augsburg Publishing House, Minneapolis, Minnesota, 1966

Here is better link:

His name is Robert Paulsen

Posts: 1725 | Registered: Aug 2005 | From: NC
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Default  Posted: 8:16 AM, September 19th (Wednesday), 2007View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Thanks NC,I really needed this today.

Bad couple of weeks and just as thoughts of vengeance were creeping in this has calmed me down.

Love and light

The strong are sometimes wrong but the weak are never free.

Posts: 174 | Registered: Mar 2007 | From: scotland
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Default  Posted: 8:02 PM, September 27th (Thursday), 2007View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

A Bump for hurtin

His name is Robert Paulsen

Posts: 1725 | Registered: Aug 2005 | From: NC
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Member # 8002
Default  Posted: 8:55 AM, October 16th (Tuesday), 2007View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

A Bump for those dealing with an alcoholic!

His name is Robert Paulsen

Posts: 1725 | Registered: Aug 2005 | From: NC
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Default  Posted: 2:16 PM, October 20th (Saturday), 2007View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

13 Characteristics of Adult Children


1. Adult children of alcoholics guess at what normal behavior is.

2. Adult children of alcoholics have difficulty following a project through from beginning to end.

3. Adult children of alcoholics lie when it would be just as easy to tell the truth.

4. Adult children of alcoholics judge themselves without mercy.

5. Adult children of alcoholics have difficulty having fun.

6. Adult children of alcoholics take themselves very seriously.

7. Adult children of alcoholics have difficulty with intimate relationships.

8. Adult children of alcoholics overreact to changes over which they have no control.

9. Adult children of alcoholics constantly seek approval and affirmation.

10. Adult children of alcoholics usually feel that they are different from other people.

11. Adult children of alcoholics are super responsible or super irresponsible.

12. Adult children of alcoholics are extremely loyal, even in the face of evidence that the loyalty is undeserved.

13. Adult children of alcoholics are impulsive. They tend to lock themselves into a course of action without giving serious consideration to alternative behaviors or possible consequences. This impulsively leads to confusion, self-loathing and loss of control over their environment. In addition, they spend an excessive amount of energy cleaning up the mess.

His name is Robert Paulsen

Posts: 1725 | Registered: Aug 2005 | From: NC
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Default  Posted: 8:14 PM, October 28th (Sunday), 2007View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage


His name is Robert Paulsen

Posts: 1725 | Registered: Aug 2005 | From: NC
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Default  Posted: 8:07 AM, October 29th (Monday), 2007View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

And I am the adult child of an alcoholic.The oldest child which I think makes it worse.I was always the one picking up the beer can.Embarrassed by them laying around.
I hated my mother when she went back to work and started going out with her new work friends.
Once while my dad was gone on a hunting trip she had a party at our house.
We all had to be in bed big deal.She kept us up all night.
Now I am married to a drinker.I rarely drink myself.Mostly out of fear of losing control.
I can relate to all of the numbers here.
Even number 13.It can relate to my A.

I am WS from Feb 2004-April 2004 first then a BS.
Together since 1981,married 1987 to present.Divorced,March 2012,for financial reasons, but still together until end of October 2012.Now hes having a midlife crisis and living away from home.

Posts: 4625 | Registered: Jul 2004 | From: Maine
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Default  Posted: 12:42 AM, November 9th (Friday), 2007View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I am a recovering alcoholic. I highly recommend Alanon for anyone unfortunate enough to love one of us. I know how hard it is. I have tried to date non-alcoholics, but the only 2 real relationships I have had since I got sober were with other alcoholics in recovery. A lot of baggage comes with that, their mood swings, depression, anxiety, etc. And thats just the ones in recovery! Never mind the ones who are still drinking! I'd be happy to answer any questions someone may have privately or publicly, whichever you are comfortable with.

I know this disease, and it is a bear to live with.

God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, and wisdom to know the difference. Living one day at a time, enjoying one moment at a time, ACCEPTING HARDSHIP AS THE PATHWAY TO PEACE, taking as He d

Posts: 182 | Registered: Mar 2006 | From: New England
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Default  Posted: 1:06 AM, November 9th (Friday), 2007View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Hi guys

Just peeping in to recommend a book that explains very well how an addiction develops -

"The Addictive Personality: Understanding the Addictive Process and Compulsive Behavior" by Craig Nakken

My IC recommended this book when we were exploring a different angle in understanding the dynamics of my relationship with WSO.

The single most enlightening concept I learned from this book is that as the addiction develops, the addict is no longer operating from rational thinking, but is increasingly being driven by the emotional payoff of the "fix".

Hope this helps. I didn't read through the entire thread, so I apologize if this book has been mentioned before.

Conduct your blooming in the noise and the whip of the whirlwind - Gwendolyn Brooks

Posts: 5286 | Registered: Mar 2007 | From: East Coast
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