Conflict in Relationships: Drinking and Alcoholism
A week ago, we had a counseling psychologist speak to our Villagers about conflicts in relationships. The psychologist, Sharon Wakaba answered some of the questions, offered expert advice on various topics and got to shed light on some of the issues that were raised in the WhatsApp chat. We are going to share the pieces of advice in a series of articles. In this article, we share answers to the questions on drinking and alcoholism.
How do you help a friend of yours whom you’ve seen drink himself into problems? He has two women now who’ve fathered his children but the first wife doesn’t know about the second one who he seems to be obsessed with to the point that he doesn’t sleep at home. Also, he’s living beyond his means of trying to support both families. How do you help someone like that?
He may be going through something that others may not know about. Drowning problems in alcohol does not help. Talk to him about what he may be going through. If he finds some relief, it would also give him clarity on how to take care of his children well. That may also help him see the importance of being honest and living a free life. If he is addicted to alcohol, rehab may help. But the way he lives shows he is not at peace about something, and being able to talk about that may open up his perspective on other things.
What do you do with a husband who is out drinking daily coming home after midnight and barely spends time with you and your child? Sundays are spent recovering from the daily drinking hence the week is wasted. I have reached a point of indifference and I don’t know how to approach it because it’s a concern I’ve raised many times. What would you advise?
You have constantly raised the concern, what is his response? When do you discuss things to do with the family. See if you could involve someone both of you trust to talk to both of you. He needs to see the importance of his family. Start with talking about setting aside one evening where he will not go out, and the two of you can talk. From there, let the discussions take over. But do not give up. Let him see that you truly have become indifferent, and it could lead to great resentment.
What does his behavior fulfill for him? Does he care that this cycle is breaking you? The cycle needs to end for the growth of both of you, not even about the children. Help him get that drive from himself because if he doesn’t, he won’t see the need to change. Guide him to see that he is hurting the home, and things need to be different. Walk with someone else too. Don’t do it alone.