This topic contains 31 replies, has 8 voices, and was last updated by jmarie 12 hours, 29 minutes ago.
- January 11, 2017 at 4:22 pm #668522
The best way to help him? Point him to the nearest AA meeting. If he is serious about changing, then he needs to get himself to AA and an individual counselor ASAP.
You should go to Al Anon and possibly individual counseling as well.
You are walking down a dangerous path with the “we” thinking, a path that leads to codependence (http://www.mentalhealthamerica.net/co-dependency).
You cannot do the lifting for him in his recovery. He has to do the work himself.January 11, 2017 at 5:33 pm #668527
Just be sure that he’s not asking you to keep him sober. That’s his responsibility. You can help him but you can’t find all the meetings for him, force him to go and make him put the beer down. that’s really all on him.
I really recommend AA or another structured meeting (there are several that are more secular). And be aware that different meetings have different people and different styles. He may be able to find one that has a lot of vets that know about deployment and military experience that will translate well for him.January 12, 2017 at 2:19 am #668585
That’s great if HE wants to stop drinking. You can support him by not keeping alcohol in the house or drinking around him (at least until he’s more secure in his sobriety). You can encourage him to find a group (like AA) to join. You can make sure you don’t make him going to meetings/counseling seem like an inconvenience for you (even if it does sometimes interfere with your plans). You can go to Al-anon and learn more about being supportive and not enabling him.
What you cannot do is join him in his recovery. That is a journey he has to take, not “we.” He has to be willing to work through whatever is going on. If him being sober is dependent on you distracting him from drinking, then he’s not dealing with the root of the problem.
Probably the best thing you can do for him is to express your confidence in his abilty to do this and give him the space to work it out for himself.January 12, 2017 at 9:52 am #668613
Ana- Yes, your husband is pretty clearly an alcoholic. Takes one to know one, and from your description… he is. Note to everyone: if you know someone who needs a hobby instead of drinking, then YES, they have a problem with alcohol. Just because he goes away on tour or whatever and doesnt drink during that time means absolutely nothing.
So… how you can help is tough. Because HE has to be the one to WANT to change (beyond all this “we” need to find a way stuff). Most alcoholics (myself included) have to “hit rock bottom” before seeking out help. It sounds like your husband is nowhere near that now, so probably the best you can do is insist on counseling or something- with a person who specializes in addiction.
All I know is my own path to sobriety (and those that I hear about in meetings, of course), and it included (and continues to include) AA. At first I just kept going because it is what you are “supposed to do,” but now (4 years later, as of next week) I cannot imagine NOT going to my home group. Many ppl find AA a bit taxing, especially at first, but the great thing about AA is that you take what you need and leave the rest.
The bottom line is, alcoholism is a part of him- and has been since he was born. It is not an “Addictive personality trait,” nor is it shameful. A LARGE percent of the population has it (mostly unrecognized)- and it doesnt ever go away or into remission or what have you. BOTH of you need to accept this. You, Ana, need to get yourself to Al-Anon. I hear good things about it.
Im not going to go into a huge discourse about this… because I honestly think you will disregard my advice, as you and your husband sound pretty caught up in this “helping him with his little problem” narrative. (By the way, he is almost definitely drinking A LOT more than you think- and having less alcohol in the house will NOT help.) But please also encourage him to go to AA meetings- they are EVERYWHERE, and ALL THE TIME. He can go to another town/city if he is afraid to run into ppl locally.
Good luck.January 12, 2017 at 10:03 am #668614
That was awesome.January 12, 2017 at 2:53 pm #668670
Awww thanks, Kate! That means a lot coming from you. ;0)January 12, 2017 at 11:26 pm #668791
Thank you everyone. I truly appreciate you all taking the time to comment on my post. I will talk to my husband about AA, and look to join a supportive group myself.January 18, 2017 at 12:59 pm #669714
Al-Anon is for you, for families and friends of alcoholics. I highly recommend this program that helps you to focus on yourself and what you can change. Alcoholism is an illness; you didn’t cause it, you can’t control it, and you can’t cure it. But you can get help and support for yourself in Al-Anon, and helping yourself does help others in your life. All prayers and blessings to you. I have been where you are. There is hope. God bless you and yours.