40 Years Into an Alcoholic Marriage. Now What?
Tonight I went out to the car after my husband passed out in his chair, found the half-empty bottle of brandy under the seat and dumped it out on the ground. Whenever I find hidden bottles (usually by accident, but sometimes I get mad and look for them) I empty them.
I figure he's had so much that when he goes to look for it tomorrow he won't be sure he didn't drink it all. I wish he would ask me about it. I am crazy about this man, we've been married almost 40 years, we have four great kids and a mostly wonderful life together. This is an issue that has been getting progressively worse over the last 25-30 years.
At times he controls it pretty well, but is not happy in his line of work and tends to blame the drinking on that. He's never abusive but does start stupid arguments that he won't drop, and gets even more insistent if I try to opt out. I usually just try to avoid him if I can see that he's been drinking. What fun.
He started hiding bottles outside several years ago when I began to express my feelings about his drinking. He never drinks and drives, it has never affected his work, he never drinks until about 5 in the evening. But most evenings he goes outside about then, wanders around the property (we live in the country), comes in about 6:30 or 7, finds himself some supper since he usually misses it, sits in his chair, starts a movie, and is out cold within 10 minutes, leaving me to spend the evening alone.
In the morning he's back to normal and everything is good. There is never any conversation about it because this is the one issue he refuses to discuss. Anything about it from me freezes him up. I do worry about the effect it has had or may have on our kids (we still have a 12-year-old at home).
My husband's father was an alcoholic and the youngest sibling has no fond feelings for her dad. I don't want to see that happen with our kids. I've stuck around this long and will see it through to the end because I do love him, but he could make life better for both of us if he could face up to the damage it's caused and continues to cause. Not looking for sympathy, even advice, but it helps to unload.