My husbands drinking habits are ruining our family: What do I do?

I feel like I know the answer to this question already, but when your heart is involved, these decisions can be very difficult. I’ve been married to my husband for almost 20 years. We have two great kids together. Both are teenagers. From the very beginning, our relationship was a complicated one. I fell in love quickly with a man who I knew was very smart, and unlike anyone else that I had ever met. However, he was very opinionated and headed strong and pretty much had to be right about most things. We fought a lot. I married him anyway despite the warning signs and despite my own parents begging me not to. We’ve had a lot of good times, but most of our relationship has been very difficult. Over time I began to believe that he was a Narcissist. He rarely apologized even though he was clearly wrong. He insulted me more times than I’d like to remember, and at one point, before kids, I felt worthless. I was even considering suicide. I was so in love with this man, but I could never do enough for him. I wasn’t good enough. I didn’t dress right. I wasn’t social enough. I didn’t clean the house well enough. So and so’s wife does this, and tha,t and I don’t do those things, but I should be more like her, he’d say. Then we had kids. My kids were my saving grace. They gave me so much purpose! God, I love them more than they’ll ever know. My husband was never a very hands-on Dad. In fact, he was still very selfish, did little to help me with both kids, and acted almost jealous of the attention that I gave them instead of him. He rarely changed a diaper. I didn’t help when they were sick. I was a Stay-At-Home-Mom, so my job was the kids and the house. His job was his job, outside of the house, and almost nothing else. Fast forward to today. He’s been drinking excessively for years. I used to drink too but stopped years ago. I’m so glad that I did. I can’t imagine our kids having to see both parents intoxicated at the same time. Again, I no longer drink. I literally quit cold turkey. I was never an alcoholic, though, thank God. My husband gets drunk regularly, and we end up fighting almost every night as a result. He’s not a fun or a happy drunk. He’s a mean and often verbally abusive drunk. He drinks to the point of passing out nightly, but not before he’s gotten angry about something small and petty. We end up fighting. He’ll end up threatening to leave or will sleep in another room. Last night was the icing on the cake for me. I asked him to leave, which he did. My son is angry with him, and has been hurt by his words for years, but doesn’t want us to divorce. He just wants him to get help. My daughter can’t stand him. She wants us to divorce. I’m more in between. I still love him. I know that he loves us. I just feel like he needs help. He doesn’t see, though, that he has an issue with drinking. He still finds a way to blame all of his alcoholic outbursts on us or on just me. He won’t accept responsibility for his behavior or for his drinking. He won’t even admit that he has a problem. So he packed a few things and left temporarily because I asked him to. He then gives me the pity party story over text and makes it sound as if it’s still my fault and like I am the one who is wrong. I don’t know that I want a divorce. One child wants us to. The other does not. The one who does not want us to divorce is more like me and has a more tender heart. The other child is stronger and has never put up with as much ‘crap’ if you will. I’m still unsure because I love him. I want him to get help. I want him to stop drinking. I want him to see how he is destroying his family and the emotional stability of his own kids. So, what would you recommend that my next step be? I’m scared. I’m unsure of what the future holds. I’m scared of the unknown. I’m scared of no longer having what we have, after being married almost 20 years. I’m simply scared of everything. I’m o,ld enough to know better, but here I sit, like a child…not sure what to do next, except to cry.

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Ultimatum time… Quit or ya leave. My stepmonster is on her death bed as we speak. she chose to stay with my alcoholic father and has been bitterly unhappy and neglected. Her anger has been taken out on my sister and me because we’re his kids

I would suggest giving him an ultimatum. Either he gets help with his drinking and emotional issues or you’ll file for divorce. You deserve happiness and your kids deserve not to grow up around his behaviour. If he doesn’t get his act together straight away, file for divorce.

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Put it this way what would you tell your daughter if she was being treated that way by her husband. Like you said he probably won’t change. He’s treated you like crap right from the start time to know you and your kids worth

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Just know, you aren’t alone. I’d suggest therapy, because you are willing to save the marriage. But if the therapy/counseling doesn’t work, you need to leave. Not just for you, but for your kids. At least you can say you tried. :heart: I wish you the best and I hope that you can save the marriage and if you can’t, I hope you find strength to leave and be happy again.

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You need to consider your own happiness too! I’ve been here unfortunately and the best thing I ever did was leave.

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He is never going to change. Because he doesn’t have to. Even leaving him will be hell. Your family has been damaged from the beginning. Good luck

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So why would you stay??? What’s the question? Should you allow your children to witness this daily and think this is ok behavior to tolerate from someone you think you love?? Next time he passes out, drag him out in the cold to freeze to death. What in the heck kind of love is this… Gather the strength you need to kick him out

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DO you work and can you support the family?

My mother has been a severe alcoholic for most of my life. Just leave. You and your kids will be better off

File for leagle seperation and support, when your son sees the diffrence he may change his mind and you might too.

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To be completely candid. He will never change if he doesn’t see his behavior as an issue. It will leave you feeling like crap. This is 100% an abusive situation and, for the sake of both of your children, I would leave. It is horrible growing up and watching that from a child’s perspective. It warps your sense of a healthy relationship and can cause severe anxiety and depression. Good luck mama! I’m sending my love to you and your family :heart:

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How do you even have love for somebody who disrespects you on a daily basis once you leave I promise you will never settle for that shit ever again I literally have been where you’re with me ex, not only did I Cook and clean all the time I also worked my own job 40+ hours a week to be told I’m not enough, I have to drink because I cant stand you, but when I left he cried and begged and pleaded for me to come back and at this point I was done it was gone the last 7 months of our relationship I slept on the couch I didn’t want to touch him because he wasnt the person I fell in love with in the first place then I knew I had to go! and we do have a daughter together however we do co parent well together but that’s about it.

Just up and leaving a 20 year relationship is easier said than done honestly. If he is willing to get help and actually stick to it then he will need the love and support of his family. Otherwise, you have to consider how you would feel if you witnessed either of your children going through this with their partners…Because essentially, what you’re doing is putting them through this with their father. Tough love I know. But I sense that that is what you are needing and asking for here.

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Mama he doesn’t love you. Treating someone the way he treats you… that isn’t love. You haven’t described any happy moments and even said yourself that the entire marriage has been difficult for the most part. Every couple isn’t always 100% but it sounds like you guys aren’t even 50%. Imagine your kids marrying someone like your husband in the future… what would your advice be to them? You said you’re scared of no longer having what you have after 20 years but all you’ve had is abuse. It may or may not be physical but he is abusing you mentally and verbally. He’s made you think the worst of yourself. If he is narcissistic like you say he will never ever see that he is wrong. You have obviously given your husband unconditional love and support and that’s what you’re scared of leaving. But from what you describe he’s never done the same. You deserve so much better for not just you but your children. Show them that being treated like, that isn’t ok. You’re one child asking for you not to divorce is already Thinking that his (your husband) behavior is acceptable. Please mama don’t stay around for more. What happens when his drinking gets too out of hand and he snaps and hurts you or one of your kids?

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Demand he go get help, unfortunately he will probably continue especially if it has become a habit or worse, he is an alcoholic. They usually have to hit rock bottom before they quit, and that is too damaging to the family. I would insist he get help or it’s over. You do not want to watch him continue to hurt himself, because his health will decline as well.

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can you give them a place to live? if not will have to move in with family-or keep the payments on the house if you own it-if not you will lose everything-you need to get counseling to see if you can work things out

Only he can decide to change. I think a divorce is necessary. Even though your one child doesn’t want it, it cannot continue unless he seeks help and change. And you can’t force a person to do that unfortunately. So your only real option is to remove you and your children from a toxic situation.
My parents are still together in a loveless marriage and I wish they would have divorced. Still do. They are completely miserable and myself and siblings suffered too :frowning:

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Al-Anon is a group dedicated to helping those who have suffered because of a loved one’s addiction to alcohol. You will get all the help you need there and will be treated with love and compassion, and it is judgement free.

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Kick him in the balls