When your partner loves booze more than they love you
Alcoholism is destructive in so many ways. It can have devastating effects on those who are addicted to alcohol, as well as their loved ones, and the health and wellbeing of both parties. Professional counsellors know that alcoholism takes over, but they also know how to treat alcoholism so it is no longer a problem for the addict and the ones who love them. Alcoholism doesn’t only affect the alcoholic, but the ones who are around them too who often yearn to understand why alcohol has taken precedence over them and need support and advice in their own right.
Rosie* felt like this when her husband developed alcoholism: “It was an awful feeling, to realise that your partner’s absolute first priority is alcohol, and you are no longer what they want most. Being made to feel like second in the pecking order, so to speak, created a wide range of emotions. I would alternate between feeling incredibly angry to almost overwhelmingly sad. One moment I would want to shake Sam*, my husband, violently and demand that he stop treating me so badly, and then there’d be other times when I just wanted to go to bed in a darkened room, and pray that I would never wake up.”
Rosie is, of course, not the only person in the UK to experience such powerful feelings. Every year, thousands of people with partners who abuse alcohol find being made to feel second best is enough to make them seriously consider leaving the relationship.
Family breakdown affecting children
The problem is made even more difficult when there are children involved. Alcohol being put at the centre of things (by a parent), meaning that family life is downgraded to a lower position in their order of priorities, can create a whole host of issues. Some statistics on the topic show that children affected by alcohol-influenced family breakdown are:
- 75% more likely to fail at school
- 70% more likely to suffer from low-self esteem and a lack of self-confidence
- 50% more likely to have alcohol abuse problems themselves
- 40% more likely to have relationship problems themselves
Recognising the risks is key
When alcohol addiction by one partner devastates a marriage, it can be very difficult to salvage the situation without professional help and guidance. Getting to the root cause of the marriage breakdown is essential, but this can only be arrived at by a couple if the alcohol abuser in the relationship is prepared to acknowledge that they are addicted to alcohol and need help.
From there, professional clinicians, counsellors and therapists at Manor Clinic can draw from vast experience and a wealth of knowledge to help the drinker and their family.
Rehab can transform lives
Rosie is testament to how life-changing rehabilitation is: “Prior to Sam finally seeking help for alcoholism, we had been experiencing communication problems and we were also in financial trouble, due to Sam basically spending so much on alcohol each week, and prioritising alcohol to the exclusion of everything else. When he finally recognised and admitted that alcohol was an issue in our marriage and began treatment, it changed everything.”
*All names have been changed.