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My Husband Becomes Agressive When He Drinks, What Can I Do?

by Sharon
(NSW, Australia)

Hi. My husband is becoming increasingly aggressive when he drinks excessively and it is causing problems within our marriage. He does not drink everyday but will have a beer or 2, three or more times a week.

The problems happen when he drinks too much. He becomes aggressive and jealous and doesn't know when enough is enough. When sober he is kind, gentle and considerate, but when he drink he becomes a totally different person.

I am worried that his aggression may turn violent and it is now being noticed by friends.

I have no idea what to do or where to seek help from - or if he is even willing to admit that he has a problem. He has said that he knows drinking makes him angry and is causing problem, but he cannot agree to stop drinking.

We have 3 young children and if he goes out drinking, I don't want him to be coming back home afterwards.

Any help or direction you can give me will be greatly appreciated.


Hi Sharon

It's a problem you simply have to confront head on and deal with. The best way to approach it, is to sit your husband down when he's sober and calmly talk to him about your concerns, and that his behavior has reached the point where it's become unacceptable.

Then you give him the choice - address his problem, or there will be consequences from your side, which could end up threatening your marriage. Explain to him that you'll support him in whatever way to get his alcohol problem sorted, but that you're not prepared to expose your children to his aggression, and that you won't allow yourself to become a victim of his abuse.

If your husband sees how seriously you regard his behavior, it will hopefully motivate him to address his drinking problem. And with luck, that's all it will take.

However, even though your husband doesn't drink every day, he might already be in the early stages of alcoholism, which means he may need to engage professional help and look at support groups like AA to overcome his problem. And if that's the case, abstinence and making drastic lifestyle changes is the only way to recover successfully.

The challenge here is that many who suffer from alcoholism or have a serious drinking problem live in major denial as to the extent of their problem and so aren't prepared to change.

So all you can do is confront his problem - and if need be, even do an organised intervention to try and get him help if talking to him doesn't work. And if you still don't get through, you'll seriously have to reconsider your relationship, because you cannot expose yourself or your children to any form of potential violence.

If your husband doesn't want to change, no one can force him. He has to take responsibility for his problem and do whatever it takes to deal with it. But by you drawing a line in the sand and telling him 'enough is enough', hopefully he'll wake up to his self-destructive behavior and how that's affecting you/the kids - and then be prepared to do something about it.

Best of Luck

Comments for My Husband Becomes Agressive When He Drinks, What Can I Do?

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Apr 26, 2011
Been There
by: Anonymous

I was here once. My husband and I had 2 boys and one day he got drunk and snapped and hit me and my oldest son (3 year old) tried to protect me and got hit!!!! I then used force to get me and my kids out of the house now we are divorced and my oldest son will not have anything to do with his father. My children are only aloud to seem him with a DHS rep. there. It was a huge mess I wish I had left when he started drinking and my son would have never when through what he has went through. I wish you the best but I have been there done that and it will not get any better unless he gets help and if he doesnt then pack up and leave. My son is 7 and he remembers everything about the night his dad went off as he calls it. I just dont want it to happen to you and your children.

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