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  •  Dec 2016 7:25 PM

    Message # 4467247

    My husband is at the moment in residential re hab .He has been there a week . Things came to a head after my mum was seriously ill again and in hospital .I had to travel home . My OH had been drinking so much I could not even leave the dogs with him ,so arranged for them to go into kennels ,then drive the 3 hours home to see mum . When I returned home ( really was dreading going home ) on the thursday, he was crying ,saying he couldnt live this way any more. So I got on the internet and found a rehab for him on the friday ,drove him 3 hours to his re hab ,and said goodbye .

    Now I should be ecstatic , but feel really strange .The next time I see him, will be Friday coming,the day of our sons wedding . I really dont know how to be with him. I am scared of the un known . This is my sons day and really dont want the attention to be on my OH . Drink has been in our married life for over 10 years . Was on the edge of divorce ( waiting to get past the wedding and christmas ) now I am really confused . I also feel resentful ,he is there in his own little bubble .I have been left with all the organising and cleaning up his chaos that he left behind .While he has his meals cooked, therapy and his last conversation with me was that he was really enjoying it

    Last modified: 19 Dec 2016 7:28 PM | doreen
  • 20 Dec 2016 11:35 AM

    Reply # 4468334 on 4467247

  • 21 Dec 2016 9:27 PM

    Reply # 4470809 on 4467247

  • 22 Dec 2016 11:36 AM

    Reply # 4471537 on 4467247

    Good for you Doreen! We are not some discarded plaything that is happy to be rediscovered when they stop to look. Yes, respectful communication – and over a long enough period of time for trust to be rebuilt. A few weeks’ good behaviour doesn’t erase our emotional scars and memories – if your relationship is truly important (not just dare I say it, bloody sex – you can tell I’m menopausal and over it, can’t you?) then he will recognise it’s worth taking time to repair and mend in a way that values you, your experiences and your needs.

    I do hope he sees this and backs off – for his sake – I don’t think he’ll be doing his cause any good by pushing you or trying to make you feel guilty.

    Thanks for your kind words – I pray I can live up to them ☺

    Love and peace, Lisa

  • 24 Dec 2016 12:44 PM

    Reply # 4475295 on 4467247

    John McMahon(Administrator)

    A big thank you to Lisa and Doreen for the very open and honest way that you have shared here.  We really hope that you continue to share your story so that we can all learn from it.  In the meantime you are in our thoughts and prayers.

    Many people come to Bottled Up, or other groups or organisations, looking for what we call the “pixie dust” – that one thing (word or action) that is going to fix everything.  We really wish we had some of that pixie dust to sell, we would be billionaires by now.  But it just doesn’t exist.  It takes work, effort and determination to live with an alcoholic.

    Even when they decide that they have had enough and go to rehab or AA or whatever, this is not the end of the story.  It is just another chapter in the book.  We are not saying these things to be negative, for many it can all be worth the effort.  We are saying this to be realistic.

    When we wrote the Bottled Up book, one of the final chapters was Recovery.  At the time we said that we could not even attempt to cover the whole topic in one chapter as there was so much involved.  However there were two things that we did highlight.  The first of these was getting to know one another all over again.  The drinker does not get sober and return to the person that you dated, most of us ‘know’ that deep down but still have expectations about what the sober person will be like.

    The second thing we highlighted was forgiveness.  Many of the resentments that you have carried will surface, its inevitable and maybe you will need more support in this period than at the height of the drinking.  However, if the relationship is going to survive, there must be forgiveness – both for the drinker and for yourself.  But again that is not something that can happen overnight, it takes time and sometimes the resentment may burst out again.  So be kind to yourself.

    Lots of love

    Lou and John

    Last modified: 24 Dec 2016 12:45 PM | John McMahon (Administrator)
  • 29 Dec 2016 10:47 AM

    Reply # 4481248 on 4467247

    Thank you for that John ,and I did need conformation of my feelings .Resentment is a big thing , difficult to forget easier to forgive .My OH is home now and we survived the wedding ( was a lovely day despite the storm blowing over Glasgow ) I dont know what the future holds.My OH is full of me myself I , ( which is what his 2 weeks was all about ) I feel as If I am not part of his recovery ,I am angry and hurting and still feel he is being selfish ,which was  exactly the same as when he was drinking . Knowing that he was told he didnt have a physical addiction to alcohol and that it was psychological addiction also brings up resentment ,as he chose to drink . Not sure if I am making sense .

  • 08 Jan 2017 11:33 PM

    Reply # 4516604 on 4467247

    Here we go again

  • 09 Jan 2017 8:13 AM

    Reply # 4517100 on 4467247


    So sorry to hear that Doreen, my husband went to rehab – stopped drinking for 2 years and then started again – I left.

    Best thing I have done – even admitting that his drinking has screwed everything up hasn’t stopped him and after one heart felt apology he started drinking again. I have come to the conclusion that some people can’t be helped! I wish him all the best – but an delighted to be out of the house and away from the drama.

    It’s time to think about what you want.

    Wishing you all the best and heaps of wisdom at this time


  • 09 Jan 2017 10:33 PM

    Reply # 4519288 on 4467247

    Causing so much heartache .I have  been trying to deal with my elderly mother that is in hospital ,and really poorly ,so have had to travel over 3 hours to see her in between my part time job, and receive drunken text messages 🙁 one saying ” help me ” How emotionally stressful for me to read that,plus dealing with the emotion of seeing my 89yr old mum .dreaded driving back home tonight .Luckily he was up stairs out the way,but my dogs were so pleased to see me.

  • 10 Jan 2017 4:30 AM

    Reply # 4519648 on 4467247

    Oh Doreen, I am so sorry. Look after yourself and don’t be putting everyone  else’s needs before yours. Thoughts and prayers with you. Love and peace, Lisa

    • 10 Jan 2017 8:09 AM

      Reply # 4520004 on 4467247


      Hi Doreen – concentrate on your Mum and yourself – your husband is were he is because of his choices. When my dad was dying and I was doing the overnight care – my husband said ‘I was vile, toxic and I view other choice comments’. Translated meant he wasn’t in control and didn’t have my full attention, I am glad I spent that time with my dad – I won’t get that back.

      Take care and do what you need to do for you.


    • 10 Jan 2017 8:18 PM

      Reply # 4533975 on 4467247

      Thank you Lisa and Fiona .I get the control , so hard to deal with, and yes ,Mum comes first  . Today I have had his tears ,It hurts inside,but outside trying to show how strong I am . Its my Birthday  tomorrow ( dont feel like celebrating ) and another emotional statement ,that he has bought me a present ,and can we not start a fresh from tomorrow .
    • 11 Jan 2017 11:37 AM

      Reply # 4538661 on 4467247

      Weird how it’s all about them, even when it’s your birthday, your ill parent etc etc (yeah – I remember the night my dad died – all my husband could do was have a go at me for not thinking about him and that he might want to see my dad – and he was of course very drunk – and I almost found myself feeling guilty that I hadn’t thought about my husband). I have so many of these hurts that i’ve shut away for the past 12 years – now as I count down to a final separation, I begin to recognise each hurt, to acknowledge and relive its pain – I hope as I do this I close the door on it and disempower its hurt ☺

      Sometimes we’re better at looking after other people’s needs than our own – or even at acknowledging that we have needs – at one point I had to work very hard to work out what my needs were. And how I felt – was I angry, frightened, sad, disappointed? And as we lurch from one drunk-caused crisis to another, when do we ever have time to stop and ponder these things?

      Doreen – Happy Birthday – I wish for peace for your birthday, for relief from worry, and for wisdom to know your own heart, your needs and how to have them met.

      Love and peace, Lisa

      Last modified: 11 Jan 2017 11:39 AM | Lisa
    • 11 Jan 2017 12:38 PM

      Reply # 4541847 on 4467247

      John McMahon(Administrator)

      Happy birthday Doreen!!!

      Give yourself a present today, I know that it will be a difficult one to achieve but it will be all the better for that.  – PUT YOUR OWN NEEDS FIRST –  Just for today let it be about you.  You have some great advice and support from Lisa and Fiona, listen to it.

      When I fly, one of the things that always strikes me about the stewardesses’ safety briefing, providing that I am actually listening, is that she/he tells you to put on your own oxygen mask before trying to help others.  The point being that if you’re not OK you can’t attend to the needs of other people.

      Have a great birthday.


    • 12 Jan 2017 4:14 AM

      Reply # 4543187 on 4467247

      Happy Birthday Doreen!!!  Hugzzz

      My husband was sober and very good when my passed, he was actually the one with him.  He had gone to my parents home to stay with Dad and I went to meet my Mom in town for a doctors appointment about Dad and pick up some medical supplies, this was in January.

      My Dad’s memorial was not until May by then he was drinking again.  I felt so alone that day, for some reason he was angry with me (dont know why).  As my brother and his wife stood beside me hugging each other, I just wanted him there with me for him and me.  I was hard on him too being with Dad all alone when he passed.  But he was sitting under a tree by himself.  Ignored me all day.

      Hope you had as wonderful day as possible

Is it the booze or him?

  • 06 Nov 2016 1:15 AM


    my husband is so often angry. It kills me inside. Is it him or is it the booze. He is so withdrawn from me. Is it the booze or is it him. There is no fun anymore. I feel anxious and on egg shells. He has never physically hurt me but his anger cuts me to ribbons. I feel scared of this and feel very alone. I am sleeping in another bedroom and have been for a few weeks now. His anger seems to be subsiding. Not sure as it can flare any moment. I went to a solicitor for advice about leaving and it appears to me, he will be much better off.  I am 62 so I will not have time to recoup financially and I have worked all my life.  What to do.
    09 Nov 2016 11:15 AM


    Hi D

    So sorry – living with fear is bad. We have often on this forum pondered the question about alcohol, personality, personality disorders etc. They all seem to be intertwined  and difficult to separate. I’m not sure that knowing the answer would help. If you are able to access counselling or psychologist support, it sounds like it might be really helpful – to seek strategies to assist with anxiety and support your mental health might help. I’m telling myself I need to be kind to myself, in the middle of my stressful situation at home (working to prepare farm for sale  so we can divorce ) – you too – do whatever you can to be kind to yourself.

    Starting again can be so hard (I’m 53, a bit younger than you) – but living in fear could be worse – do explore all your options – and take care.

    Love and peace, Lisa

    10 Nov 2016 12:52 PM


    Thanks Lisa. I have seen a counsellor and he believes the way I am treated is part of domestic violence – emotional abuse. I have seen him for 3 visits and he believes I should leave. I keep swinging from knowing I should leave and hoping he will see the light.  Sounds really dumb when I read that back. I do have support systems in place. Wonderful grown children who will help and some good friends. I have a secure job and my health but here I sit. Hoping things will change but they don’t.
    10 Nov 2016 5:32 PM

    John McMahon(Administrator)

    Hi Diane – Lou here,

    John and I started this website for a couple of reasons.  The first was because the prevalent advice to the partners of alcoholics was to leave or to chuck him/her out, which did not take any account of the fact that often they were still in love with the drinker and were looking for a solution, not a divorce.  Second I wanted to help people not make the mistakes that I made.

    In an ideal world, the drinker would recognise the love, stop drinking and life together would be good.  Unfortunately, there is little about living with a drinker that could be considered ideal and sometimes despite your best efforts nothing changes.  Although we try to provide strategies to facilitate living with an alcoholic, sometimes that becomes impossible.  That is especially the case where safety is involved.  No one should have to live in fear!!

    If sadly it is time to let go, remember that the great courage that has helped you survive up to this point will be the same courage that will help you through the difficult days ahead.  As you are a member of Bottled Up, we have no doubt that you will have tried your best to facilitate change.  So you can move on, no doubt with some regret, but without any guilt or shame.

    We wish you the best in the next season of your journey and hope that you continue to find the hope and support that you need from the members of Bottled Up.

    Warmest regards


    28 Nov 2016 11:18 AM


    Thank you Lou. i really appreciate your comments. i have decided to keep trying to make things work and everything was going along ok until yesterday.  we had  been having a few drinks together playing some old music we enjoy. he kept drinking and i was watching TV  when he came blasting into the room. he was bellowing at me about something that was nothing to do with me. frightened the heck out of me , yelling at me and then stormed into the bedroom. in the morning i asked him if he remembered last night. No he had no recall. i have probably said all the wrong things but when i came home from work, he was drinking again.  but i told him i wanted him to get help.  i don’t believe he will do so but l live in  hope one day he will. thanks again Lou.
    29 Nov 2016 2:47 PM


    Diane, you asked if it’s the alcohol or the man that creates the extreme anger.

    I asked that very same question on this forum a couple of years ago. It’s a difficult question to answer, because as Lisa pointed out, everything is tangled up.

    The conclusion I have come to, based on my own experiences with my husband, that it is both. My husband has always been a very angry and unhappy person, which is the legacy of a horrible childhood. It was his unhappiness that caused him to drink. When we were first married he did not drink at all, and at this time he was often very angry, resentful, and unkind to me. That was his personality. But when he started drinking, his anger exploded and he became truly abusive – calling me names, yelling and swearing at me, even becoming physically abusive at times.

    He eventually did stop drinking, nearly two years ago. However, after that there were a couple of slip ups, and I definitely noticed that after he drank, his anger came back full force, and often for irrational reasons. The frightening, extreme, irrational kind of anger, thank God, did not come back once he had stopped drinking completely.

    My husband has now, to my knowledge, not drank at all in over a year. And I can honestly say that things are a lot better at our house. He still has other addictions that cause me a lot of grief, and he is still a selfish individual who is often angry and difficult to get along with. But the level of anger is much diminished; it’s at a level I can tolerate. It seems that alcohol took whatever ugliness was in his soul, and amplified it considerably.

    He has been mentioning lately how “he never really was an alcoholic” and downplaying how serious his drinking problem was, which terrifies me. I’m so scared he’s going to start again, because I am older than I once was, my health is ruined from all the years of stress (chronic fatigue syndrome), and if he were to start drinking again I know he would become vicious once more and this time it would kill me.

    I hope that helps a wee bit.


    30 Nov 2016 11:25 PM

    John McMahon(Administrator)

    The, probably unhelpful, answer to that question is Yes – it is the booze and Yes it is him.  Not every one who has a drink problem is exactly the same but there are a few commonalities.  Many drinkers have a lot of pain and pent up emotions that find hard to deal with and even harder to express, in fact they may be consciously or unconsciously suppressing those emotions.  Alcohol can remove the inhibitions on the emotions with the result that they can burst out.  One picture that comes to mind is the Jack in the box, when you take the lid off the spring drives the Jack into the air quite violently and after a while it settles down.  The drinker’s emotions can be very similar.

    I prided myself on being a nice guy (or so I thought) but if someone pushed my buttons, and they did not need to be trying very hard, I could be very explosive and abusive.  I know now that much of my anger was at my own sense of powerlessness and self loathing but I did not know that then and probably even if I had known I would not have admitted it.


    02 Dec 2016 3:40 PM


    The jack in the box is a good analogy, John! Yes, it’s just like that. All the bad, suppressed stuff just explodes violently out when alcohol is present.

    I think it’s wonderful that you were able to get to a healthy place where you could recognise the unhealthy behaviours in your past. It’s amazing to me to hear a former abusive husband and problem drinker speak so frankly about the mistakes of the past. Have you ever mentioned on the site anywhere, John, how this transformation came to pass? How did you realize, for example, that you used to be filled with a sense of powerlessness and self loathing? Surely all of our husbands don’t have to become a psychologist in order to be able to see this sort of thing? Is there anything we partners can do in order to gently push them towards healing?

    04 Dec 2016 3:04 PM

    John McMahon(Administrator)

    I have toyed with the idea of talking about my recovery but never actually got round to it.  I wondered about how relevant or interesting it would be to the members but now a few people have asked about how I got sober.  So I will put some videos together charting my journey and post them on the Blog.  Will email everyone when I post them.


    05 Dec 2016 12:23 AM

    Deleted user

    I think that would be wonderful John.
    • 06 Dec 2016 3:41 PM

      I would be very interested to see those videos, John. Your transformation has been so dramatic (even if it was gradual) and I’m sure many of us are curious as to the causes of this impressive change. Thank you!
    • 19 Dec 2016 7:14 PM


      I too would love to hear your story John . I have seen the most horrible side of my husband , never physical ,took me a long time to realise that is was emotional abuse ,during his rantings,he would say ” I am a nice man ” I  knew he was a nice man ,but not when he had gone over that line . I have and still do believe this anger is part of him ,the part he keeps shut down and like a toddler that hasn’t got the ability to control their emotions out it comes , with the help of alcohol . Difference being toddlers grow up  x

Don't think I can keep going

  • 23 Apr 2016 9:13 PM


    Hello everyone,so sorry I have not been here to support you in all you are going through .My husband really hit rock bottom, and was drinking from morning until night 7 days a week. So stressful as life was put on hold . He then decided to join a local drugs and alcohol centre.I have never felt so pleased for many years.

    He did a home detox ,and coped really well,I thought it was time to start re building our relationship . Sadly to say,he is back drinking again , he lasted 3 months ( was the minimum time he was given to stay off the alcohol ) I am saddened by this, the years of dread coming home have started again , the uncertainty of his mood, and his depression that went with it .

    I cannot go through all that again,made me ill,sleepless nights , stress,and still having to go to my work. I have an ageing mother who at times through the years has been unwell, and I have been unable to visit her when I needed too ,as I knew husband couldnt look after himself,never mind out 2 dogs. Dont want to go through that all again .It is such a selfish addiction .

    I need to get out of this marriage ,its only a marriage on paper now , he is married to the alcohol 🙁

    24 Apr 2016 2:14 PM

    Deleted user

    Hi Doreen,

    I completely sympathize.  I continue to deal with my drinker, even though I have “detached” to some extent, and now sadly feel that further separation is coming.  My best advice is to try to avoid getting overwhelmed.  Yep  I know that can make you laugh when we tend to live in a state of overwhelmedness.  Everything is a process. Small steps. Try to do what is best for you in the moment.  Make good choices for diet and exercise. Find a good friend to confide in.  Imagine what it would be like to be on your own. Figure out what it would take to get there. Try to encourage and support your husband as best you can in the mean time, but it is his life and his decision.

    Hope you have a wonderful day,


    25 Apr 2016 4:17 PM


    So sorry to hear you are feeling like this . I am new to this site. I am living with a binge drinker for over 20 years . My family are all left home finding life very difficult to cope no one to talk to .

    05 May 2016 7:55 PM


    Anonymous wrote:So sorry to hear you are feeling like this . I am new to this site. I am living with a binge drinker for over 20 years . My family are all left home finding life very difficult to cope no one to talk to .

    06 May 2016 1:07 PM


    So so sorry Doreen. There comes a time when you have to do what is right for you, and you sound like you need space and time for you. Please look after yourself – Linda gives good advice. Take care of you Doreen. Love and peace, Lisa
    30 May 2016 2:22 PM


    Hi everyone and Doreen and Linda particularly. Wondering how things are going? My husband has outdone himself recently, and I am taking steps in case things come to the point where I must go. As the days, months and years tick by and the cycle continues (drinking increases, there’s a bad slip-up, incident or altercation, then he quits, then slowly builds up again), I’ve clarified some triggers for myself that point to “time to leave”. One is if my 11 year old (who adores his dad but now understands quite well how the addiction works and its associated behaviours) says he’s had enough and another is if my husband loses his job through drinking. I fear his workmates may have covered up for him several times now, and I know a number of you live with the fear of what next – it’s like a time bomb ticking. Just wanted to share my inner groaning as I watch the tremor in his hands that suggests he’s suddenly quit again, and confirms my recent fear he’d screwed up at work through drink-related behaviour. Doreen, are you alright? I do hope you’re looking after yourself and have found some way of seeing hope and light in your life. We all need this. Please seek help if you feel out of hope. I carry on because I have hope – not in the end of drinking, but that if the line is crossed and life is no longer manageable with him, I leave. I will not care if I start again in my 50s or older, if I have peace. Sad, huh? Take care all, Lisa
    04 Jun 2016 2:05 AM

    Deleted user


    I am sorry that your husband continues his cycle.  I suspect we have all experienced them: goodness knows I have.  I wanted to say that I admire your perspective on “starting again”. So often, people are fearful of doing it.  Now certainly, for some, financial stability is an issue, but when this isn’t the case, starting a new chapter can be fun.  It also sounds like you have a good idea of what your line is.  I think that’s good too, even if it changes slightly over time.  Anyway, keep up the fight. It’s definitely a marathon and not a sprint.


    04 Jun 2016 3:12 PM


    Thanks Linda. I think the thing I love most about this forum is that it continually reminds me that I am not alone in my struggles. And in your comment about the marathon you have reminded me of why it is important that we look after ourselves – dont want to crash and burn before the race is run. (It’s so easy to put oneself last in the long line of priorities, and we can be pretty certain that our drinking partners wont do that.) Take care Linda, and I do hope the others of you out there are doing ok. Cheers, Lisa
    06 Jun 2016 5:50 PM


    Just wanted to say a quick goodbye to everyone!  My subscription ends soon and I will not be renewing.  I wanted to thank everyone for your support, kind words and encouragement.  Leaving my abusive alcoholic was one of the hardest things I’ve had to do.  Starting over from nothing is horrible, but the emotional trauma and pain is so much less.

    I am almost done with my first year of law school.  I have a 3.9 GPA thus far.  I feel like I have a bright future that may have been lost had I continued to live in my beaten down situation.  I am glad that I took that step to become the author of my life and my future.  Its not easy.  I won’t pretend that its been unicorns and rainbows.  My kids and I are struggling financially, and emotionally but we are getting along.  I’m trying to set new standards of acceptable behaviours, and meeting their emotional needs as I struggle with my own.  All in all, I’m content.  That’s really all I can hope for right now but I’ve met some wonderful people at school and in the new state I live in.  And overall I feel I have a bright future.

    This is a word of encouragement to all of you who may be on the fence about whether to stay or go.  Just remember you are the author of your life.  You are not a passenger.  One day we will all die, but the rest of the days we live.

    I wish you all the very best

    Sincerely, Tami

    07 Jun 2016 2:19 PM


    Loving to hear from you Tami and hating to say goodbye – all my very, very best, heartfelt wishes to you – for love, peace and happiness, both inner and external. Loving to hear that you’re meeting lovely people, and praying there are true, caring friendships to nurture and be wrapped in, and space to heal. Prayers for your children, that they too may develop close, caring friends and that they may be healed. I bought a beautiful book today Tami – I felt compelled to buy it, and now I know why – these are my farewell gifts to you – some beautiful, deep, insightful words from this book by Kim McMillen, called ‘When I loved myself enough’:’When I loved myself enough I came to feel like a gift to the world and I collected beautiful ribbons and bows. They still hang on my wall to remind me.’ and ‘When I loved myself enough I stopped trying to banish the critical voices from my head. Now I say, ‘Thank you for your views’ and they feel heard. End of discussion’. Do all of you let me know if these quotes have meaning for you or help guide a way forward – happy to share others if people like – the above two leapt out at me tonight. Thinking of you all and wishing that you, like I, and like Tami, can all love yourselves too. Bye Tami, so glad for you. Thank you for sharing so openly for so long. Biggest of cyber hugs, love and peace, Lisa
      • 28 Jul 2016 3:29 AM

        Deleted user

        I’m new here. Someone mentioned making good diet and exercise choices. I say good idea. Hell, tonight, after my drinker left to party at a friend’s house (this friend is unknown to me), I decided to make one small good choice for myself. I decided to floss my teeth. It might be a small thing to some people, but I know that when I stress out over his drinking, it makes my heart race and increases my blood pressure. So, I decided to try to combat some of the damage that the stress causes by doing something small and good to counteract it–flossing my teeth. It gave me a feeling that, even if I have zero control over his decision to indulge in his addiction, I do have control over myself. If his drinking eventually leads to a breakup, well, at least I’ve done what I can to ensure that I am still healthy and beautiful and still able to attract good things in my life. I am also not waiting around for his call or text. I am writing to you guys here and I’m hydrating. I’m also going to watch one of my favorite shows on netflix until I get tired and go to bed. Small, tiny choices, you guys. That’s where your sanity lives. Grab onto them.

        31 Aug 2016 7:20 PM


        Hi everyone ,still with my husband , for how long I dont know. Getting all the necessary paper work for the solicitor and have put it off so many times.I have had his tears, his promises, the blame the anger all his emotions once again, that either tug at my heart strings or make my blood boil . The emotional stress is difficult to deal with. I walk away as at times I could vent and shout at him . especially when he tells me I dont have the capability to feel emotions.  He continually goes on about the past and when I dont listen to the same story that I have heard for the hundredth time, he then says I never talk. Does our alcoholics ever take responsibility for how their drinking affects us ? Just a few words ” I am sorry ” would make such a difference .Thank you for your kind thoughts,It really is a lonely place at times x

        04 Sep 2016 1:37 PM


        Hi Doreen

        So lovely to hear from you – sorry to hear of your emotional – roller-coaster?  I talked in my other post of having love dry up – don’t you care if he says you’re without emotion – we all know why! Here’s a thought – what if this cold, hardened state we find ourselves in is our bodies’ self-defence mechanism? We cannot continue week after week,  year after year in this on-edge, walking-on-eggshells state. I do so hope you can put together an action plan- stepping out and following through on even one action (sounds like you have begun really – keep it up). Best wishes Doreen – I’m here to egg you on – go Doreen – I bet you have really got plan A coming together (referring to your other post ☺).

        Love and peace,


        29 Sep 2016 9:31 AM


        Thanks Lisa

        Planning is hard when you dont know which road to travel 🙁 Even where to live causes me a dilemma ,and the fact I will need to find full time work to support myself . at a time of my life when I should be starting to take it a bit easier . I have most of the paper work together for my lawyer , but still something is holding me back. That little bit of hope that my OH will suddenly become sober , and everything will be ok possibly.In reality I know it will never happen. My son is getting Married in Dec is hard too . If I won the lottery tomorrow I know I would be out of here, that is telling itself.

      • 30 Sep 2016 7:29 AM


        Hi Doreen, I am on the same road – maybe half a block in front. Husband currently in the States visiting family so I have a 5 week window in which to move. This window has helped focus the mind. I have found some where to rent /spoken to lawyer /opened bank account etc. Must confess I am exhausted.

        Don’t think husband has any idea so feel a bit devious but needs must and I believe that this is the best thing for me. It has been a long time coming and the harsh reality is he will never change.

        Just keep thinking that this to will pass. I also just keep reminding myself to breathe. And finally just working through the list step by step little by little.

        It is a bit scary but that’s okay.

        Good luck xxxx

I've had enough

  • 08 Jul 2016 2:13 PM


    Hi folks Things are so quiet on the forum that I’m worried you’re all doing it tough – I do hope you’re alright? For myself, I have come to the end of the line – I’m sick of being on this merry-go-round, and I want off! I went through the heart-breaking mental and emotional process of letting go all of the things in this current life that I love (especially my animals) then told my husband- sat him and the 11 year old at the table and said that while son and I respected his choice to drink, we choose not to be with him if he drinks. (I’d talked with our son first.) I said I needed to have an exit plan and we’d need to sell our property. But that it was his choice – he said he wasnt going to throw it all away (presumably my son and I as well as the property), and we talked a little about him seeking help and my scepticism about him not drinking, then son and I went out for a couple of hours to give him space to think. We talked again, really talked, a few nights later, and I was brutally honest in some of the things I told him – things he needed to hear, but already knew. So, a new start – I wrote a summary and said we’d reassess in 2 months. Perhaps it’s step 1 in the extrication process, or maybe he means it enough to seek help. We’ll see. A friend I was debriefing with this afternoon feels I’ve set him up to fail by issuing the ultimatum and leaving him to it – she thinks I should help him plan a strategic approach – but I resent having any part in him fixing this. I’m so over it being all about him! What do others think? Oh,and do let me know how you are going. Love and peace. Lisa
    12 Jul 2016 3:20 PM


    I so agree with you about it all being about him and good for you.  I have had enough as well.  My husband has been drinking for years now, he retired 7 years ago and has increased since then.  All he does is sit in his chair all day drinking, doesn’t do anything all day except sleep and drink then moans he can’t sleep at night.  I do most of the house work and work 3 afternoons a week.  I have just about had enough but haven’t got the energy to get out.

  • 13 Jul 2016 1:25 AM

    Deleted user

    An ultimatum is about you, not the drinker. If you are doing what your heart told you to do, it’s right. You just have to be prepared to follow through. It feels like it is always about the drinker and not us. It is so very tiring.Linda

    13 Jul 2016 12:36 PM


    Thanks Linda and anonymous person – you’re right Linda -I am following my heart and gut here -thanks for helping me validate my thoughts. That same gut told me he was drinking  yesterday – not quite 2 weeks! But he seemed clear tonight. *sigh*

    Anonymous person – one of the things I told him was that if he loses his job because of drinking I’m out of here, and he indicated he had already guessed that. Of course,  I ‘m not interested in being around if he loses his job for any reason,  but I didn’t say that. I’m so sorry for your situation – I don’t think I could stick that – I do hope there are lots of things you can do for you so that you take care of yourself and are healthy.

    I have learnt so much through this forum, and I’ll take this opportunity to say thank you to all those voices, those who’ve left too, whose sharing may well save me intolerable future pain – I’m planning on an end to ‘sharing’ the consequences of his drinking, one way or another.

    Take care – love and peace, Lisa

    13 Jul 2016 2:44 PM

    Deleted user

    Hi, this is my first time posting. I just wanted to say that I’ve learned to always trust my instincts and gut feelings. If I think my husband has been drinking, he has. My instincts always seem to be right, even if I second guess them at that time. Peace. 
    14 Jul 2016 11:57 AM


    Hi folks – I haven’t posted in a long time – so here goes with an update!

    About 2 1/2 years ago my drinker ended up in rehab – it was quite a journey that got him there. And after a 6 week stint he stopped drinking – I would like to say that we got back a different person – but alas that wasn’t the case – he was sober but still completely self-absorbed and mean basically (told me I was vile and toxic because I choose to spend the nights at my dying fathers – he had care in the day but needed cover at night and we didn’t want him back in hospital). Anyway I procrastinated – after my father died I was pretty wiped out – I had also decided not to make any big decisions until a year after his death.

    Well in the meantime – I believe the last 2 – 3 months the drinking has started again. It is amazing that his level of arrogance is such that he doesn’t seem to realise that we know although it is as plain as the nose on his face! I have discussed things with the grown-up kids (24 & 22) – my daughter graduated yesterday and we decided that we were not going to say anything until after her graduation – so now it is after her graduation.

    The time has come – and enough is enough so I too am working on the exit strategy – with a bit of fear and trepidation. I believe that he will be mean and nasty – so I guess that holds me back. We started counselling a couple of weeks ago (we will have been married for 25 years in September and I arranged this before I realised he had started drinking again. The counsellor is now on holiday for 3 weeks – can I wait until our next session on 9 Aug?

    Just really want this all to be over…………… has to have more to offer than this?


    14 Jul 2016 2:17 PM


    Hi Pam, and welcome.

    Thanks so much – it really does help to hear others have similar thoughts and experiences.  We have been a bit quiet of late in this forum, but I am sure you will find this a really warm and supportive place.

    Fiona, I am so glad to hear from you – not the best news perhaps, but it actually sounds like you’re doing the right thing for yourself – if you really think he will be nasty, you need a support person of some sort to be with you when you tell him perhaps – do you think the counsellor would be good for this? In their absence, anyone else? Do you need to think about being able to spend time elsewhere after talking to him? My very best wishes winging your way – for wisdom,  for peace, that you will be well supported,  and hopefully that he won’t be as nasty as you fear.

    Remember our friend Tami and her successful exit plan – she proved for us, that there is, there really is more to life than this, and that there definitely is hope . . .

    Love and peace, Lisa

    15 Jul 2016 7:53 AM


    Thanks Lisa – I think you are right – I am going to try and make it to the counsellor on 9 August – if it gets to bad I will evoke plan B (which as yet doesn’t exist). I also have the option of working from friends down South which is not ideal but would be okay for the short-term. It is just so exhausting – however so is living on this merry-go-round!

    How are things progressing with you?

    16 Jul 2016 12:24 AM

    Deleted user

    Hi Fiona,

    I am glad to see you around, but I’m sorry for your continued pain.  I recall our drinkers were somewhat similar…very narcissistic? Whenever I read posts about Plan Bs, I think people are moving forward strategically.  Keep that up!



    16 Jul 2016 6:51 AM


    Hope this is the right place to post.

    I want to ex-kaon what’s going on but it’s to tiring to even type it all

    Married 38 yrs almost 60   To a husband who us a farmer and just recently injured himself spraying     You know it’s just to long to explain   Will continue to read

    • 16 Jul 2016 3:45 PM


      Welcome Wanda – yes, just keep reading, if writing is too hard, but thanks for  saying hi!

      Fiona, like Linda, I just love the concept of a plan B – and it seems there is another option (maybe that’s plan c?).

      I have learnt so much here, so when husband said the other day that his 22 year old son had asked if he could live with us some time in the future,  alarm bells started (visions of them and beer etc etc). Anyway, it occurred to me that this son (by husband’s previous wife) needed to know our current situation and the possible outcomes, and I mentioned this to husband and got some non-committal response – so I got in touch and briefed the son. (Who is great and understood.) But husband was not pleased.

      Good! I’m not playing by his rules (the unwritten ‘thou shalt not tell’ that goes along with the ‘thou shalt not see’ or smell etc) and maybe that will help him realise he’s got to get help. I’m sure he knows I’m serious  – but I think he hoped he could be on his best behavior and I’d weaken over time – but now I’ve told his son, that might have been a game-changer.

      Regarding developing a strategy for him, I have decided on a third option (plan c?) – I have details of a drug/alcohol service a friend is working at and recommends – they offer help for families as well, so I’ll contact them, get some info and perhaps son and I will see them – I feel another ultimatum coming up – I may challenge his commitment to quitting and ‘suggest’ he see this mob – I’ll take their advice on whether I should go too.

      Fiona, I totally get that energy is critical  – just writing this I can see how much energy I’m putting into this – your plan A needs to be to have you healthy, and whichever plan comes after will perhaps follow more easily? Do take care – I’m thinking of you.

      Love and peace,  Lisa

      31 Aug 2016 7:29 PM

      Gawd I wish I had a plan A never mind B and C 🙂

Time to say goodbye

  • 19 Feb 2016 10:17 AM


    I have not posted on here now for a long time. My membership will be up for renewal soon and I have decided not to renew it. I didn’t just want to disappear without saying goodbye. For a period of time Bottled Up was my lifeline – it rescued me when I was in despair and not knowing what to do or where to turn. I used to sign in daily and there were wonderful people who I had never met who so generously supported me by responding quickly to my questions and worries. I can never thank them enough and often think about all those who helped me and wonder how they are doing in their lives. Their postings gave me the courage to find my way out of a pit of misery and make changes in my life for the better. I shall forever be appreciative of their words and their generosity in actually writing to me even though they don’t know me. My biggest thanks go to John and Lou for setting this site up and their wonderful support. I have much to be thankful to them for.

    My husband has been sober now for over 3 years after many years of continuous drinking. When I finally had the strength to say enough, he stopped. I can’t say it has been easy for me as he has never wanted to discuss his drinking in any way. This initially caused me massive anxiety but I have learnt to accept more his reluctance to talk because his actions speak louder than any words can or ever will. The longer his sobriety continues, the better our relationship becomes. We are very close and now lead very rich, rewarding lives where we are able to support each other and the wider family. During this past year, he has shown such strength in being constantly there for me whilst I have been caring for my elderly mum though a distressing period of illness. I really could not have asked for more support from him – he was there for me continuously.

    I think one of the things that has helped the situation – the day he stopped drinking, I stopped too. It is hard at times not being able to enjoy the odd glass of wine but I had fallen into bad habits too just by being with him – drinking was a part of everything we did. We have re learnt how to enjoy ourselves, have holidays, go for meals, go to concerts, have trips out and socialise without the wretched alcohol getting in the way.

    It isn’t easy and I don’t kid myself that his sobriety will last forever – it really is one day at a time. Obviously I hope it does but if it doesn’t, I know I can return here for support and I think he would ‘work with me’ to regain the relationship we have now. Whilst I can’t say well done to him about his sobriety, I can daily tell him how much I love him and how much I enjoy his company.

    So, thank you John and Lou, thank you to all those people out there who were such a rock for me during the black bad times. I truly hope that all those on that journey I was on will be lucky enough to receive the support I was given. It changed my life.

    19 Feb 2016 12:32 PM

    Best wishes Alison – hope things continue well. Love and peace, Lisa
    22 Feb 2016 4:42 PM


    Thank you for taking the time to say goodbye, Alison. Your gentle, friendly posts here were always an asset to the group here at Bottled Up. I’m glad to hear your husband has maintained his sobriety, and I wish you both well.

    Love Laura

    24 Feb 2016 10:34 AM

    Hi Alison,

    I’m new to this site and the forum but I just want to say thank you for posting such a great inspirational and positive message. I’m so happy to hear things have improved with your husband. I really understand all the highs and lows you must have gone through and appreciate you sharing your experience here. Reading other’s stories and experiences are a lifeline to me at the moment too.

    I wish you very the best,


    28 Feb 2016 2:28 PM


    Hi Julie I am also new and needed a lil support and was hoping to vent about how I feel after 25 years of being married to a drinker and one day he is gone because he can not stay sober or keep a job and I feel bad??
    28 Feb 2016 9:55 PM


    Hi there,

    Welcome to a fellow newbie! I’m so sorry to hear about your situation. It must be very tough and I’m sure a good rant here would help. I have only managed a mini-one so far as I’m sure once I started it would be longer than intended but I think it would help to get it all out one day! I know that Lou has always said in the audios that this is the place to rant if you need it (as well as sharing experiences and support etc) so you might feel better if you do. I’ll check back over the next couple of days to see. In the meantime, I think it is natural to feel like that but I have to keep reminding myself that I am not responsible for his behaviour, only for my own. I felt bad myself at first but now I realise I have to look after myself and put my care and energy into doing that, rather than trying to change someone’s behaviour who doesn’t want to change. I hope these words help in some way and hope to hear more soon.


    06 Mar 2016 3:02 PM

    John McMahon(Administrator)

    Thanks, Alison, for your lovely recent post. We shall miss you but are SO encouraged by your story. Would nudge people to take time to read it, if you havn’t done already; trusting you will find it gives hope and inspiration.  Thank you, too, for all the support you so kindly give to each other, often in the middle of your own pain and struggles. John and I are constantly touched and humbled by your feedback.

    Its Mothers Day here in the UK so special thoughts today for all you mums out there parenting ‘against the odds’. We salute your courage, tenacity and love. Your value to the family for whom you fight and sacrifice is incalculable. We stand today with you shoulder to shoulder!!! Let us  never feel alone while we have each other J

    You are all in our thoughts, prayers and heart xxx Lou and John

    11 Mar 2016 8:01 PM

    Thank you to Lou and John for the encouraging and supportive message and to everyone else here who reads and supports everyone on here. It means so much to know people understand and to read other’s experiences and achievements. Love and strength to everyone xxx
    21 Mar 2016 5:32 PM
    Thanks Allison so happy for you and your husband!  I am so very glad this worked for you and hope it does the same for me..
    07 Apr 2016 2:35 PM


    I wish you all the best Alison. I am so pleased to hear that your husband continues to do so well, and also it sounds like your anxiety is easing up, that’s terrific to hear. 3 years, that is fabulous, and how time flies.

    I often think of you, and wonder how you are, especially since we seemed to share so much in regards to anxiety. I am doing well myself, although life has been very difficult, but I am pleased to say not because of alcohol. My partner has been sober for nearly 6 months now and is very determined to leave the drinking behind him, so I am hopeful, but my anxiety has eased off as a result of his change, and like your husband he has been incredibly supportive of me, and we are now planning some holidays.

    I check in every now and then, so am very pleased to have caught your post. All the best Alison, and I have to say a big THANKYOU for all your support over time.


    • 10 Apr 2016 11:54 AM


      Oh Allison, I am so happy you continue to enjoy your lives together. You helped me, too, through many rough patches over the years. Just a brief update: my M moved away from alcohol but dove headlong into drugs when we moved here and the last 2 years have been challenging in so many new and unpleasant ways. I’ve just come on to re-watch the video on Relapse (which I can’t find) as my M checked himself into mental health 2 months ago and was doing really well but had his first relapse this week and hasn’t been coming home. I am encouraged by reading your update and wish you all the best. 

      Ho’omaika’i ‘ana and Aloha ʻoe! Patrice

    • 11 Apr 2016 1:26 PM

      Hi Patrice So sorry to hear, but happy to have your positive encouraging voice back in this supportive circle – hugs, Lisa