Wife wants me to start drinking again! - Talk About Marriage
Relationships and Addiction Whether it's drugs, alcohol, gambling, sex, pornography, or anything else, addictions can be detrimental to the health of a relationship.

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post #1 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-04-2011, 10:31 AM Thread Starter
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Wife wants me to start drinking again!

I was a problem drinker for a few years in my 20's. I had a few embarrassing social situations, two DUI's and frequent crushing hangovers. I was never a daily drinker and my work performance was good, though I could see it could deteriorate if I continued. I quit Oct 1999 and haven't had a drink since. It was hard at first in social settings, but I have adapted and do well at parties and bars.

For the last 2 and a half years I have had signicant marital issues with my wife. Frankly we are on the brink of divorce, but neither one of us can figure out how to manage our family separated( we have 4 kids). My wife has signicantly ramped up her drinking. She starts about 4 in the afternoon as far as I can tel and drinks wine until she goes to bed at 10. She admits she is drinking to ease her tension. She doesn't get too sloppy, but sometimes she snaps into a mean streak and criticizes me.

Last night we went out without the kids. The meal started off pleasant. After about three glasses of wine she told me that I should consider drinking again! She stated that I really wasn't an alcoholic like some of the bad ones she heard about and that I was too inflexible. That I had unilaterally decided to go on the straight and arrow and that I "deprived" her of the opportunity to share a glass of wine with her husband. That if I started drinking again I wouldn't be so tense.

I like my sobriety. It simplifies my life. I never wake up with a hangover and I never get embarrassed about what I said the night before. I would like her to do some sober activities instead of the boozy social gatherings she prefers. I was on the verge of asking her to consider cutting back though with our lousy relationship I don't have much pull.

I think she is way out of line by asking me to drink again. What do you think?
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post #2 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-04-2011, 10:36 AM
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Re: Wife wants me to start drinking again!

She may be feeling guilty about her drinking, and is hoping that you joining in some will make her feel less awful.

Also are you one of those preachy exdrinkers, or one of the "it's not my poison, but you go ahead" types? I'm thinking the later.
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post #3 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-04-2011, 11:00 AM Thread Starter
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She may be feeling guilty about her drinking, and is hoping that you joining in some will make her feel less awful.

Also are you one of those preachy exdrinkers, or one of the "it's not my poison, but you go ahead" types? I'm thinking the later.
I'm not preachy at all as far as I know. I go out to bars and serve it in our home to our guests. A few months back I asked her why our social life had been so slow. She was always the one to plan that part of our shared life. She told me no one invited us out because I dont drink. That stung.
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post #4 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-04-2011, 02:52 PM
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Re: Wife wants me to start drinking again!

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She told me no one invited us out because I dont drink.
That's ridiculous. I go out with people who don't touch alcohol. I also go out with moderate social drinkers. I steer clear of big boozers, after being married to an alcoholic. It may be that the crowd who isn't inviting you thinks drinking to excess is "fun." Lots of people do.

I'm only getting your side, but it doesn't sound like you have an issue with whether anyone drinks or not. However, your wife has an issue. Tension? Tell her to get into a yoga class! Drinkers use any excuse to toss down a couple belts: I'm tense, my boss is a jerk, my kids are driving me nuts, my spouse doesn't understand me, Punksatawny Phil saw his shadow on Ground Hog's Day, etc.

If what your wife says has a grain of truth to it, do some investigating of your own. I assume you have male friends. Do any of the guys enjoy watching football together? Beer is usually present at those get-togethers. Why not hang out with them and see if anyone is bothered that you're not drinking.

If that isn't a viable solution, do you have one that would let you check out to see if your non-drinking is keeping you from being invited to social gatherings? Frankly, if I hung out with people who didn't want me around because I choose not to drink, I'd rethink whether I wanted them as friends ...

P.S. - Don't go back to drinking. You know what problems it causes.

I refuse to make anyone a priority in my life who considers me nothing more than an option.

You can't start the next chapter of your life if you keep re-reading the last one.
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post #5 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-04-2011, 05:31 PM Thread Starter
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I know it's ridiculous. It doesn't seem to bother any of my friends although I was left out of the beer pong tournament for obvious reasons!

I think she's unhappy inside and projecting that unhappiness on me. She was the center of our group of friends and now she won't hang out with them. She prefers single mothers for company now. For the first 7 or 8 years of our marriage there was a spirit of cooperation and hope in our marriage. We were looking towards the future. Now she complains about not being able to travel for the holidays, not getting material things, (money is tight). How nice would it be if she acknowledged our present situation and made the best of it. Instead she complains about me and how inadequate a life I have made for her.
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post #6 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-04-2011, 05:56 PM
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Re: Wife wants me to start drinking again!

Don't start drinking again. That's just plain ignorant. You realize what it did to you and you are happy not drinking. Your friends don't care if you drink or not. As long as you don't project the holier than you attitude, nobody cares. It takes a lot of balls to quit on your own and don't start for anyone.

Your wife is unhappy. A lot of single mothers feel the weight of the world on their shoulders as in why me? This attitude is being projected on to your wife.

Start making plans to get together with couples. This will help her, trust me.
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post #7 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-04-2011, 11:05 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the reply. I am at my wits end around here. This is just the latest of her ideas including change your job, and let's move to another state.
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post #8 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-04-2011, 11:57 PM
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Re: Wife wants me to start drinking again!

scapel, i've been sober since july 30th 2004. if my wife EVER suggested for me to go back to drinking, she would be history in a heart beat. you doing great,keep it up.
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post #9 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-05-2011, 08:19 AM
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Re: Wife wants me to start drinking again!

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I think she's unhappy inside and projecting that unhappiness on me. She was the center of our group of friends and now she won't hang out with them. She prefers single mothers for company now. For the first 7 or 8 years of our marriage there was a spirit of cooperation and hope in our marriage. We were looking towards the future. Now she complains about not being able to travel for the holidays, not getting material things, (money is tight). How nice would it be if she acknowledged our present situation and made the best of it. Instead she complains about me and how inadequate a life I have made for her.
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It sounds like she has a few things to sort out . . . and making you drink is not one of them. My wife is 47 and I'm convinced that some of her issues are perimenopause related stuff. (And, I am not trying to be a jerk and blaming her hormones). Dependng on your wife's age, this too could be a factor. Of course, bringing it up can be hazardous in its own rite. I can't see how you drinking will cure her unhappiness.
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post #10 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-05-2011, 08:22 AM
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Re: Wife wants me to start drinking again!

If you are comfortable not drinking, then don't do it. No one should ask you to do something that could potentially lead you in the wrong direction. It's like asking someone who quit smoking to have another cigg. "Come on, one more wont hurt."
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post #11 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-05-2011, 10:49 AM
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Re: Wife wants me to start drinking again!

Been there done that. We moved states to try and make it better. If the marriage is bad there it will be bad anywhere. Unless you have a concrete job offer in another state, don't go. You have your support system where you are and it will be really bad with no friends, family or a job. Your wife is just unhappy. Happens to the best of us and she's the one that needs to work through it. Question is how long will you wait? I've waited 29 years for my husband. Wouldn't wish that on anyone.
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post #12 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-05-2011, 05:38 PM Thread Starter
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scapel, i've been sober since july 30th 2004. if my wife EVER suggested for me to go back to drinking, she would be history in a heart beat. you doing great,keep it up.
Thanks for your reply and congratulations on your sobriety. I'd like to be black and white with things but I can't any longer. She's crossed so many boundaries in the last 2 years and this is just one of them. I never commit to leaving even when she says deliberately hurtful things. This one ranks a bit higher than "why didnt your mother get cancer instead of my sister(cured)". Its just the outrageousness of it all. How is drinking going to help us reconnect as a couple? Obviously I won't be starting up drinking again. It just shows where her head is at.
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post #13 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-05-2011, 06:28 PM
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Re: Wife wants me to start drinking again!

scalpel, let me submit this thought for your consideration: your wife may have a drinking problem. Alcoholism? I dunno. She wants to "pull a geographic" in addict's terms. "Let's move to San Diego. We'll be happier there. Things will get better, I just KNOW they will!" We take ourselves with us 24/7, no matter where we go.

The drinking won't help you reconnect. But it will push down her feelings, issues, and baggage. And it will become a vicious cycle if it continues.

Fact: alcoholism is a progressive disease. I watched it first-hand. I watched an extraordinarily intelligent, gifted Army officer degenerate into skin-and-bones, who lived to drink and drank to live.

I am NOT saying that is what is going to happen to your wife. Only you can really tell if there is a problem brewing.

What do you think? Do you believe, in your heart, that she has started down the road to addiction?

I refuse to make anyone a priority in my life who considers me nothing more than an option.

You can't start the next chapter of your life if you keep re-reading the last one.
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post #14 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-05-2011, 09:38 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Wife wants me to start drinking again!

She is definitely drinking daily. We sat down and talked about what we could do to improve our marriage. Her not drinking during the week was one of them and she lasted a couple of days. It has gotten progressively worse. Her mother drinks all afternoon and I see her falling into the same pattern. Now her mother has memory loss and her husband basically takes care of everything. I definitely don't want that 10 or 20 years down the road.
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post #15 of 23 (permalink) Old 12-07-2011, 12:52 PM
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Re: Wife wants me to start drinking again!

My husband is a recovering alcoholic and has been in AA for almost 3 years, and done really well.

Your wife doesn't sound helpful or supportive really. I could never imagine telling my husband to drink again, after what all we went through for years with the drinking issue.

I couldn't tell you the last time I had a drink myself, probably years. I have never been a big drinker anyway, maybe a drink once every few months. Since living with an alcoholic for years it pretty much turned me off to it anyway. However one thing I would never do, (even if my husband told me I could), I would never drink in front of him. Even though he must take care of himself and try to resist temptation at times if he ever sees others drinking, I still would never drink infront of him like that. IMO thats just disrespectful to him.

She sounds like she has a problem of her on. BTW no one has to be a falling down drunk or come home staggering in from a bar at 2am to be considered a alcoholic. Yes, some may be worse off than others, but a alcoholic is an alcoholic, period.

I'm not sure if you are in AA, I didn't read all the replies sorry for that. However, if you are, I would suggest you asking her to come with you to one. If you're not and done fine without AA thats good, but might be still helpful for you and her both to attend. Also, since her mother drinks and you did as well, she should check out Alanon as well for herself.

"If you always do what you've always done, you will always get what you've always gotten."
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