Unfortunately, in a study involving 80 people with alcoholic spouses, nearly half of them were moderately codependent, and 41% were severely codependent, meaning they enabled their partners’ destructive behaviors. A “functional alcoholic” (or “high-functioning alcoholic”) isn’t a formal medical diagnosis, but a term used colloquially to describe a person functional alcoholic husband who is dependent upon alcohol but can still function in society. The term “currently-functioning” may be used since it’s not likely they will remain functional (and not misuse alcohol) indefinitely. You may face many challenges when living with an alcoholic husband. The relationship can feel overwhelming and lead to serious mental health problems.
- In cases where the person’s alcohol use disorder is not recognized as a result of being treated for some other issue, it is important the person is approached carefully regarding the need for treatment.
- This message, when put right, will force them to be in their best mood despite being overly drunk.
- Families can get stuck in a holding pattern or waiting game while waiting for the day they address the admitted problem.
- But he had to hit rock bottom to do it, and he dragged me down with him.
- Ultimately, no matter who is in your life with a drinking problem, their struggles with alcohol can be exacerbated if they do not receive timely intervention.
Justifications for their drinking often are having many friends or an active social life. They could be in denial of the mistaken belief they don’t fit the stereotypical mold of an alcoholic. The reality is heavy consumption of alcohol is essentially https://ecosoberhouse.com/ counter-intuitive to maintaining a stable life with managed responsibilities. Eventually, the habit will catch up to them, perhaps resulting in embarrassing, frustrating, or dangerous disruptions of their life and the lives of their loved ones.
Getting Help As a Functional Alcoholic
This is a pattern that should be monitored if it persists routinely. Having a beer with lunch or celebrating a holiday during the daytime is far different than routinely having drinks during the day. Make sure to take connected symptoms such as lying about drinking or hiding their actions seriously. An opposite warning symptom can be an attempt to make light of drinking often in order to normalize it.
Even though they think they’re being good parents, high-functioning alcoholics can’t be fully committed to their children’s well-being when alcohol is also a major part of their life. On the outside, high-functioning alcoholics may appear to be great parents. They may show up to their child’s events and seem to have good relationships with their children.
What is the DSM 5 criteria for Alcohol Use Disorder?
There are also Al-Anon groups that can help you manage living with an alcoholic partner. These groups are similar to AA, but they focus on helping the loved ones of an alcoholic person. If you live with a high-functioning alcoholic or think you may be, communication is essential to help them. It’s also essential to talk to him when he’s more receptive to the idea of help and intervention. The tendency to hide their problems is also a common characteristic among alcoholics.
When you live with a spouse who has an alcohol use disorder, taking care of yourself is important. Having an alcoholic spouse is not a situation you will be forced to go through alone. Some people have gone through and are going through the same situation, and they can offer insight, advice and understanding.