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I am 21 and have been with my boyfriend for 2 years. At first I had no idea he was an alcoholic. He most certainly didn't think so. After six months of going out, he had a drunken depressive episode and was forced to take a leave of absence from college. During his leave he continued to be unaware of his alcohol dependence. Only after being admitted to a mental hospital twice was he able to realize that something had to change or his self-destructive behavior would end up killing him.

    This journey has been arduous to say the least. I ended up having to take a leave of absence from college just to deal with everything.

    That being said, here are some things I have learned....

    Even if your partner admits to having a problem, the will and motivation to make permanent changes will not come until they have reached rock bottom. This was the hardest part for me. I wanted to watch over him, cover for his mistakes, and was constantly on alert to prevent potential catastrophes. This made me an "enabler" and, like an alcoholic, he took advantage of that.

    Rock bottom is scary as hell, but in his case it had to happen before things could get better.

    An alcoholic who is willing to begin recovery needs support from experienced recovering alcoholics. For my boyfriend, he found support in Alcoholics Anonymous. I think very highly of AA, but I understand that some people have a stigma against it.

    Recovery is a change in lifestyle. This means it will be difficult or impossible to hang out with friends who drink together. Some places will need to be avoided to prevent memories from "the drinking days".

    I love my boyfriend dearly, so when we moved in together a year ago, I told him that if he has significant difficulty maintaining sobriety or appears to not take it seriously, he will have to find somewhere else to stay. This is the best thing I can do for him (and for me) in that situation.

    The most important thing for you to take care of is your well-being. It took me a long time to learn that! My first instinct is to worry about other people first, but this chapter in my life has taught me some good lessons on that.

    Finding support is essential, even if you can only find it in online forums. I would not have survived this journey had it not been for the support of my therapist, parents, and friends. The worst thing to do is shut yourself away from other people.

    Recovery never ends! I will never be able to sit with my boyfriend and ask, "Hey... remember when you were recovering from alcoholism? Those be crazy times."

My story is unique, but I hope this gives help to some.

If you have questions for me about before and during recovery, please ask. :)


beps, first of all thanks for sharing ur experience. Has ur boyfriend completely recovered now? no goin back or even craving for it?