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luvmedo24 posted:
I grew up with an alcoholic father, and it caused a lot of heartache for our family. Even now that I've grown up and it's been so long, I am still struggling with what I went through back then. I had to grow up real fast and have seen things that no person should ever have to see. I used to be terrified when someone even cracked a beer; terrified of alcohol in general because of my dad. I realize now that not everybody drinks like that and that you can enjoy a drink without being a raging alcoholic.

My husband also grew up with parents who like to drink, and they've only gotten worse since all their kids grew up and moved out. Luckily though, his experience was no where near as bad as mine was. But still, I worry about my husband. He's a beer drinker. He comes home everyday and has a few beers throughout the evening. I have a hard time with this sometimes, but he tells me that he's coming straight home everyday. He doesn't go to the bar or stay out all night. He's not drinking enough to get drunk either. He's not abusive. He goes to work everyday...etc. He just enjoys a few beers after a long day at work. He's always assured me that it wasn't a big deal.

We were highschool sweethearts, so we've been together for a long time. When we were younger and just starting to drink, my husband realized quickly that whiskey wasn't his friend. When he drinks that stuff he starts to get angry. He would never touch me or hurt me, but he would be unpleasant and pick a fight and just wouldn't stop. So I told him I wouldn't put up with that and that he couldn't drink it anymore. In fact he very rarely drinks any hard alcohol at all because he doesn't like what it does to him.

Lately though, it seems like he's been drinking more than usual. It seems like we're spending more money on beer than we should be. I think because he's had a lot of added stress, he's been drinking more. And when he's had a little too much he gets that same way. He gets upset more easily, it seems like he's looking for a fight, and nothing you say is right. He just doesn't quit ranting and he becomes obnoxious. I don't even know how to explain it. But I finally said some things to him that he needed to hear, and I let him know that I won't stay with him if this was how it was going to be. I can only take so much. He admitted to me that he has a problem and needs my help. I'm kind of scared. I don't know what to do. Since our talk though he hasn't drank at all. He doesn't want to be like that. I think he should save the drinking for the weekends only, so I think he's going to try. I just don't know what I can do to help. My dad went through all the bells and whistles and nothing ever helped him.
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Amelia_WebMD_Staff responded:
Welcome to the community, luvmedo24 -

It sounds like you and your husband are a great team and should be very thankful for one another. I'm sorry to hear about your childhood and can definitely relate in many ways, but communication, love, trust and patience will hopefully get you and your husband through this present situation. If he is stressed at the moment, maybe you can both find something to relieve the tension at the end of the day...a hobby he once enjoyed, some form of exercise/sports, doing something that you both enjoy together or he can do to just let off some steam alone.

I'm sure that others in the community have some words of advice, but it is also never a bad idea to speak with counselor when you are truly worried. There are a number of treatments out there, today.

I am wishing you all the very best!
Amelia (filling in for the wonderful Caprice)
 
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Betty Ford Center
James Golden, MD responded:
I think you are struggling with yourself because you see your father in your husband's behavior, and that horrible childhood experience surrounding the drinking is coming up for you. An Al-Anon program - including a sponsor — will help you tremendously. You will learn the tools of how to deal with your husband's drinking there. He may not even be an alcoholic, but it sounds like you believe he is (like your father.) You can offer help, but the rest is up to your husband. The good news is that chemical dependency treatment will work for your husband if he is an alcoholic. There is hope for both of you, believe me.


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