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Unread 01-07-2016, 02:06 PM   #1
namhoo
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Default Should I get back together with my alcohol abusing partner?

Hi all,

This is my first post on the forum about a problem I have been dealing with for the past 3 years. I hope someone can get me some perspective on this situation especially if any of you have gone through something similar.

My ex-girlfriend (32 years old) of 3 years is an alcohol abuser. Her drinking was very bad when we first met, she would drink daily to the point of blackout and behave extremely rude and to be frank crazy. Over time it became better but she is still fighting it. At this point I would say she drinks between 2-4 22 oz bottles of beer 5 days a week and sometimes if she has a deadline (she is a graduate student) she will stay up and drink all night while she works until 5am. During this she also goes out with friends, and if she does she comes home wasted at between 5-7 am. I feel like after she gets a certain point of drinking she has to keep drinking until day light.

There have been two instances in our relationship where I have nearly thrown in the towel. The first was in 2013 on New Years Eve. We went to a party in NYC, she got completely drunk and didn't want to leave even though there was no one there and the host of extremely frustrated. We had to literally kick her out. On the way to train station she fell down some stairs and got 2 very large bruises on her eye and head. At the station she did not want to go on the train, it took me about an hour to convince her to get on the train as she was acting manically in front of everyone.

The next day she felt terrible about she acted and promised not to drink for 3 weeks, which she did and I was very proud of her. After this she would drink less at around 3 cans of beer a day, around 4-5 days a week. After this I went into a sort of burnout about our relationship, as she would still occasionally (maybe once/twice a week) drink all night. She didn't think this was a problem, and I started to think maybe it was me that was the problem, maybe I was just being uptight and her drinking was completely normal. So I just ignored it and repressed any criticism I had.

Fast forward to 2015 and she goes out one night to a bar by herself and I get woken up at around 4am as she is talking and drinking with a stranger on our stoop. I go out to see whats going on, and she is obviously very drunk. I was worried this person would take advantage of her and asked if she would come up saying it's late and she might wake the neighbors. She says she'll come up soon. 30 minutes later she still hasn't come up so I go down again and ask her again, this time she comes up with me, we don't talk and I go straight to bed. A couple of minutes later, she comes to the bedroom and says it wasn't cool that I did that saying she was interviewing the person for a project. I said we should talk about this tomorrow as I have to get up for work in a couple of hours. She just persists to talk and starts yelling at the top of her lungs. She then proceeds to call the police in her delirious state. They come to our apartment and they aren't sure what to do, they can see she is wasted and aggressive and they eventually arrest both of us.

They let me go after 9 hours of being in a cell and give her a restraining order where she isn't allowed to come near me or contact me. At this point I knew I couldn't deal with this relationship anymore and we had to split, so I pack my things and leave, and I'm now in a new apartment. 2 months after this she has gotten in touch with me saying she wants to get back together, saying she has changed and that she will stop drinking and has begun seeing a therapist. Her condition on us getting back together is that she wants us to live together again, she won't have it any other way, saying we can't just date after we have lived together. But to be honest, I am scared. What if she hasn't changed. I just want to take it slow, and eventually move in back together if she is getting better, but to rush into this is not good for either of us. But she won't have it. To her it's all or nothing. I am not sure what to do, as if she didn't have this drinking problem I would want to marry her and be with her forever.
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Unread 01-08-2016, 08:37 AM   #2
jenm
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Hi namhoo, welcome!

This sounds exactly like me when I was drinking. By the grace of God I am sober today and I am SO grateful. I can't say if your girlfriend is an alcoholic or not, I can only speak for myself. What I can do though is tell you what I would do (if I was your girlfriend) and I was still living an alcoholic life.

I would manipulate you into thinking I had changed. I would tell you anything you wanted to hear about my therapist, if I even had one. I would tell you all of these things only after you moved back in, of course. I would be 'good' for awhile, making you think that I had really changed. When you least expect it, I would then relax and begin doing what I always do best, drinking, and only thinking of myself and what I could get out of every situation and every person. Again, this is just me, but I have been around for awhile and it is very common.

Dang it. It IS hard to love someone and wish he or she would change. I have so been there. Am still there with a family member.

Your girlfriend will not change her behavior if she is not ready to do so. If she doesn't think that her drinking is a problem, she will continue to do exactly as she has done in the past. You cannot fix her. Your love will not fix her. Moving back in with her will not fix the problem or her. I pray that she will get to the end of herself, with hopefully small consequences, and get some help. There is no shame in this.

Please let us know how things go. Again, I'm not a counselor or any kind of expert, I'm just a girl who knows exactly what it is like to be stuck in a whirlwind of life called active alcoholism, and who is really, really grateful to not be there today. Take care, Jenm
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Unread 01-08-2016, 10:44 AM   #3
Sam Bailey
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Hello Namhoo,

Welcome to the site. There's lots of good info here. More than that, there's lots of kindness and support. Kind but straight-shooting.

Please reread Jen's post. It's absolutely right on!

Jen? Excellent advice, terrific post. Thanks for stepping up (as usual!) and giving Namhoo your support.

Namhoo? Keep coming back, keep posting.

best,

sam b
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Unread 01-08-2016, 11:51 AM   #4
R. Lee
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namhoo, Welcome to the site. I am a recovering alcoholic whose behavior was something like you girlfriend when I drank.

As Sam says jenms post says everything I could say.

That being said I have choices in a relationship like yours.

I would not live like this.

Good luck in your decision.

Last edited by R. Lee; 01-08-2016 at 11:54 AM..
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Unread 01-10-2016, 09:52 PM   #5
namhoo
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Hello all,

Apologies for my delayed response. Firstly, I wanted to thank you for all your supportive and honest words. They are greatly appreciated.

To update you on the situation. She has agreed to take things slow and that we wouldn't move in together until we are both ready. So this is good, it will let me see how she is recovering (which I really hope she is).

One thing that concerned me however is that she says she will still continue to drink in social situations, but not much. She said that her therapist suggested she not stop drinking cold turkey. I am no therapist so I'm not sure if this makes much sense. Would a therapist say to cut down slowly?
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Unread 01-11-2016, 10:06 AM   #6
R. Lee
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namhoo, For the person who is an alcoholic controlled drinking sucks. I tried it & it did not work. 1st. I was angry that I could not drink like I wanted to, then I went back to my old drinking habits.
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Unread 01-11-2016, 02:22 PM   #7
jenm
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Hi namhoo!

I agree with R Lee. Time will tell. Many alcoholics try to control their drinking, try to be a 'normal' drinker. I've done it, more than once. Only drink in 'social' situations, only drink on weekends, don't drink before 5pm, drink only beer no liquor.....I could give you a million more excuses. My dad used to joke and say, "I only drink when I'm alone or with someone." For him, it was a joke. For me, it was my life.

I pray that your girlfriend is, indeed, trying to recover. Some people who abuse alcohol are able to resume 'normal' drinking. However, looking back, I would have told you once that I, too, would only drink in social situations. Then, social situations took on a whole new meaning - my life would then revolve around those 'social' situations.

I will pray for you guys. Keep us posted! Jenm

P.S. I agree with the separate living thing, good for you! Maybe she could get a cat.
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