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proexpert37, Educator/Life Coach
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My husband of 25 years is an alcoholic. The heavy drinking

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My husband of 25 years is an alcoholic. The heavy drinking became an issue when he became disinterested in his children and verbally abusive to me about 4 years ago.I gave him the ultimatum of treatment or divorce, and he completed a treatment program andwas been sober for 2 years. He was back to being the gentle, kind, thoughtful, compassionate loving husband and father I knew him to be for 20 years.
However he got a job transfer to MA in July 2010, and I stayed in FL with our four kids ages 15, 12,11,10 while we tried to sell our home. A few weeks ago, I learned he had started drinking again without telling me.
The kids love their Dad dearly, and were devastated that he was drinking again. After getting "caught", he claims he stopped drinking completely and goes to AA nightly and is in individual therapy. My husband says he hates himself for deceptively drinking again, and for the relapse itself. He feels he has hit his 'low" by lying to me about drinking again, and says he believes he will never drink again.
My concern is that when dealing with an alcoholic, one must accept that lies, deception, fear, etc... can come with the territory. The kids suffered enough prior to his treatment, and I cant imagine moving to MA to live with him if all that is par for the course of a lifetime with an alcoholic
The kids miss him dearly, are very sad and disappointed and really looked forward to moving to live with him again. But now I wonder whats best for them.
How can I help them "grieve the loss of the Dad they wanted"?
And what things do I need to consider for the kids sake, when determining whether I should work on this relationship or divorce?
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Parenting
Expert:  proexpert37 replied 6 years ago.

The alcoholism has become a family problem. Trying to work on a relationship of marriage of 25 years especially when there are children involved would be the best course of action to take especially if you still love your husband and are willing to accept the fact that the man that you first married is not the same man that you are married to today. Since the children want their dad around, love him dearly, and care for him tremendously, you must consider their interests. If you were to divorce your husband, your children may experience emotional problems of your marriage failing because divorce is tremendously hard for children to accept. But if you feel in your heart that is the next step that you must take, then do what you must do. If you could work out an arrangement that would be acceptable for all parties involved without having the court decide, that would be so much easier. Here are some questions to ask yourself:


1. Do I love my husband?

2. Could I live the rest of my life with a man who has an alcohol problem?

3. How would my kids feel about a divorce?

4. How does my husband feel about a divorce?

5. Could I live without my husband?

6. Would I feel like a failure if the marriage ended?

7. How did I feel when my husband relocated for his job and how did the children feel?

8. Was our household lonely without my husband when he first moved away?

9. How much does my husband contribute to the upbringing of our children?

10. Am I willing to fight the disease of alcoholism with my husband no matter what it takes?


Hope this helps. If you need more assistance, let me know!!! Have a good evening. Take care.

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