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My Husband Left Due to My Alcoholism. Now I'm Resentful. Any advice?

My husband left me because of my drinking. I was never abusive or violent. I never cheated on him either. I feel betrayed because he never even tried to help me get better. He just washed his hands of me and walked away after 17 years together.

I am sober now and have put my life back together with a struggle. I still have to see this man all the time because we have a child together. I know it couldn't have been easy for him but I would have stuck by him and at least tried to help him should the roles have been reversed.

I don't now feel able to trust another man as I feel that they won't stick around if any bad things come into the relationship. I've been on my own now for 4 years and although I don't lack in men being interested in me I just feel like I can't trust anyone anymore.

It's so sad because I feel desperately lonely at the same time. No one has helped me to recover from alcoholism. I have just stopped by myself. I did go to AA meetings but didn't find them useful as I do not respond well to sitting in a room talking to strangers about my most intimate life.

I have only ever been in love with this man and maybe I still am and that's why I can't move on. I just want to be happy and not so lonely anymore.


Your husband leaving you was obviously enough of a shock for you to stop drinking so it actually turned out to be a positive - because if he tried to 'help you' you may well still be drinking.

It's actually pointless speculating - you're sober which is something that should be celebrated. Harbouring resentment toward your husband helps no one - least of all you.

The fact is - most alcoholics and addicts don't respond to someone trying to help them. It's only usually once something drastic happens as for example a spouse leaves - that as in your case rock bottom is reached and the desire to change kicks in. And often then even, it's not enough.

So the best thing for you to do is move on. You've learnt an extremely valuable life lesson and will hopefully be a better person for it. Living in the past won't help you - accept that the relationship with your husband wasn't meant to be and that perhaps there is someone more suitable waiting for you if you give them the chance now that you're sober.

The fact that you're also not working some kind of recovery program means you need to be aware of dry drunk syndrome whereby even though you've stopped drinking, you're actually stuck in the same negative mental and emotional space as you were while drinking - except without the alcohol.

So even if AA isn't for you - find stuff to do that will help you let go of the past and move forward mentally, spiritually and emotionally. Reading, meditation, yoga, healthy living, personal development classes etc. will all help with that. In effect, create your own recovery program then.

You've done so well. Let go and move on. Pain and being let down in relationships can't be avoided. But that doesn't mean you should avoid them at all costs - because they also offer the potential for joy, love, companionship. No relationship is perfect so you'll never know unless you give another man a chance.

Take a chance. Move on. Make peace with the past. Let go. Look forward. You deserve that so stop punishing yourself.

God Bless.

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