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My Husband Has Started Going To Church! I Need Advice!


xandermac
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My husband is an alcoholic. We've been married 12 years. We were separated the entire month of August because of his drinking. He was arrested for DUI, and a few other things like harassment (he doesn't remember what he done to harass the people), driving on the wrong side of the road, revoked license. Anyway I took him back and he's already been to court. He could have went to prison but his boss got him an attorney that went to church with him. So now my husband is really trying, "scared straight" I guess. Another co-worker has started taking him to a Church of God. He knows that I am an ex-christian, we cannot discuss religion. He says that only God can help him stop drinking. I told him he's swapping one addiction for another..religion. This has upset me almost as much as the drinking. I put up with his shit for 12 years and now he's turning into a holy roller!

Yes I guess it's better than him being a drunk, but I know it won't be long before he wants me to go, even though I've told him it won't happen. Now on the toilet he reads bible quotes for your everyday living. Blah! I'm sure they will start wondering why his satanic wife won't come to church, and this is confusing our son. Do I support him? Do I compromise my own beliefs or non belief?

Why is this pissing me off so much. A year ago I would have said "Praise the Lord", but today I'm saying WTF? I really have a lot of hate for Christianity and its hard to hold it in. I'm not sure it's healthy to be this angry about it. Is it because not believing anymore is still new to me? I'm sorry this is so long, I have no one else to spout off to.

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Yeow. Now there is a tough situation.

 

Is he going to rehab or a 12 step program or anything? I wouldn't bank on him stopping by himself, even after getting himself some god. If he's serious, he needs professional help to dig down and figure out why he's drinking in the first place. See if you can't get him into it before he loses interest and wobbles off that straight line.

 

However if he's hell bent (pardon the pun), on getting religion, there isn't a whole lot you can do. You are totally free to be supportive, but don't compromise yourself. If he wants to go to church and get himself some Jesus and you don't, then don't go. Don't go, don't talk to him about it beyond restating your reasons. If he brings it up or trys to evangelize you, tell him in no uncertain terms that there is nothing to discuss and you aren't going to listen. Straight out tell him, "That's a personal subject. Do not speak to me about it again." And do your best not to get drawn into it at all.

 

Good luck, my mother's an alcoholic, I know how hard it is to living with that.

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Wow, you're in a hell of a situation. Yes, it may be better, for him, to go to church, but what it really boils down to is "Can you deal with him being this religious?" You'll have to take a good look at yourself and your relationship with this man to decide. Sit down by yourself and make a list of the pros and cons and see which makes more sense to you. Can you live with the confusion that this may cause your son? Could you live with the piety that comes from so many ultra-religious people and his trying to get you to come to church? Basically, I think that it will be a decision that you will have to come to after weighing all the options. Good luck with this one.

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Having been married to an alcoholic, I would say you need to take care of yourself and your son first and stop worrying about what he is doing. I would bet that your husband and his drinking has been the major focus in your life for a long, long time. It's time reclaim YOUR life and take it back from the insanity.

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I agree with Taph.

 

My mother was an alcoholic and did the same thing - changed one addiction for another, time and time again. The sad reality is that as long as there's an addiction present, that's the addict's priority. Addicts are extremely self-centered people and will not consider you before themselves; and you are not more important to them than their chosen substance (be it drink, drugs, food, sex, church, or whatever).

 

I'd encourage you to do whatever necessary to detach from this person. That might mean emotional detachment, might mean separation, might mean divorce, might mean whatever you need it to mean - but he is not going to be looking out for you and your son. That's your job now. I'd encourage you to make taking care of yourself and your son your top priority. Your husband can deal with himself.

 

Get some counseling if you can, too. Maybe Al-anon, for addicts' family members.

 

Dealing with alcoholics is a fucking nightmare. I wish I could say anything more hopeful than that but I can't. Other than that I feel for you and hope you can find some sanity somehow.

 

Hang in there.

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He says that only God can help him stop drinking. I told him he's swapping one addiction for another..religion.

So true, and you can rest assured that his new Christian "family" will do everything in their power to reinforce this new addiction.

 

There isn't anything you can do to persuade your husband. IF he is ever to return to reality then it will have to be his own choice. He's on a religious high right now. Eventually the "honeymoon period" will wear off and the daily, ugly grind of church life will begin to get on his nerves. (That's what happened to me.) It MAY take a few years (sorry), but men tend to sour on religion sooner than women. Just be ready to CALMLY discuss this reality.

 

Taphophilia gives good advice. Take care of YOU and your son. Show your husband that it IS possible to live a decent, happy, drug-free life without depending on god. And while you're doing this, DON'T argue with your husband about his religious choice. You'll only be feeding a persecution complex. You'll be "Eve" trying to deceive him. He'll cling onto his faith JUST to spite you.

 

TRY to shed your anger at Christianity. When the subject arises, be prepared to calmly demonstrate through the scriptures how silly the whole thing is. Point out the errors, contradictions and hypocrisy. Learn to smile and laugh more at it.

 

One thing you need to be careful of is undermining his confidence (faith) thus sending him running for the bottle again. Your husband needs to learn how to be strong and live without any crutches. Reinforce your belief that it was HE who kicked his drinking habit, and not any "god."

 

I feel for you, xandermac. I hope this works out for you.

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I tend to agree with the others, even though it makes me a hypocrit. I came to this site because of a similar situation (although it was tied up in lies and a whole mess of its own that I won't go into) was to react with rage and stay that way for the better part of last year. The worst part is when the xians made me the scapegoat in my wife's eyes. That hurt me to the core of being that she would accept the word of strangers (who had never met me nor spoke one word to me) over the person she had known for 13 years at the time simply because I no longer had old jesus (and prior to this during a family vacation I took us to see a nativity thing at Disney World starring the Jim whatever from the movie and went to church that year...I had no issues with xianity at all even though I no longer believed).

 

So my wife's actions and my actions have damaged our relationship. I personally don't think it will ever be the same, which is too bad. So my advice to you is don't follow in my footsteps if at all possible. I know if I had read this I prior to my whole situation I would have agreed but I don't know if that would have changed anything. You feel what you feel. I wish you luck.

 

mwc

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I appreciate all of your responses. The truth does hurt. I know you are all right. I did try to find an alanon meeting, but here in redneckville Alabama theres not much to choose from without driving for miles. I have a problem with the "Higher Power" anyway. I feel like a hypocrite. Just like hanging on to a god all these years that didn't exist, I'm hanging on to a marriage that is surely doomed. My Husband left for work this morning with that bible quote book in his back pocket?? I'm not an educated person but I'm not stupid either. I couldn't understand the meaning of some of those quotes, at least not how they applied to everyday life. I know he doesn't understand them. Maybe he just wants attention from his holy friends.

After all these years of putting up with his crap it never occurred to me that he could turn me into the bad guy for not being a believer. Wouldn't that be some shit. I don't know what I'm going to do,or when, or how, but I appreciate your taking the time to care at all. I don't have any real friends to talk to about this because they all think I should jump on the church bus and stand by my man! It's all just so freaking ironic!

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xandermac, I'm a successfully recovering alkie (14+ years), and I can tell you from experience that god(s) have nothing to do with sobriety. In fact, all the xtian/fundy types in my AA meetings were always falling off the wagon - but of course, they were still 'claiming their victory' thru Jebus. :rolleyes:

 

Anyway, alkies sober up once they're sick of being alkies and living that miserable life, and not before. Xtianity is a serious roadblock to sobriety, because you're always expecting god to work his magic on your desire to drink. And we all know how god comes through for humans asking for miracles. :nono:

 

I think you can't consider any addict 'changed' unless 2 things happen - they stop using, and they actually change. :shrug: Till then, they're just a drunk who goes to church.

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I don't have much to offer as far as advice goes. I just want to say I wish you the best and hope that things work out. Just hang in there and I don't mean in the marriage or taking any crap. I just mean with life in general. Keep thinking of what is best for you and do what makes you happy.

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He should have gone to jail. I have absolutely no sympathy for your husband. None. Religion or not, I just hope he changes before he gets someone killed.

 

Way I see it, the churchy types just did your community a disservice.

 

You, however, have my sympathy, for whatever good that may be.

 

As for what to do. Well, getting him actual help would be a start, and seems like you are doing that. But as AGF has said, he won't be able to help himself until he realizes that he needs it. Once he is ready to, then all you can really do is be there for him, not enabling, but supporting (love him and call him on his bullshit).

 

Good luck.

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Xandermac, you are in quite the predicament.

First of all don't feel bad about hating Christianity. It is a valid emotion. When I first deconverted I had nothing but abject contempt for it...So much so that I have been in therapy the past two months!

 

Onto your husband. I know what it is to live with an alcoholic....My father, RIP, was a raging drunk through his and my mother's entire marraige. My mother, being the good fundie that she is, lived with all of his insanity until he started threatening to kill her on a regular basis...

I grew up witnessing his drunken rages and being in fear for my mother's life...

Ironically, my dad's life ended in a car accident. The driver who killed him was drunk...

 

Long story short I agree with everyone else. Unless he is going to AA meetings his newfound love of JEEBUS is just another addiction. He likes all of the attention he is getting from his friends and church members, and he will ride it to the hilt...And that means that you are going to have to go along with it if you are going to stay together. Christian men believe in being the head of their households and having submissive god fearing wives. He is going to try and force you back into Christianity mark my words...The church is like his 12 step program and he'll feel like a failure if he doesn't look good for the church folks.

 

You have to decide what is more important. You have waited by his side for 12 years; and now he is just going to be devoutly into the bible as he was the bottle...and frankly I don't know which is worse.

 

Personally, I would never be intimately involved with a Christian...That is what scares me most about marraige. Oneday you could marry an atheist who decides that he or she needs god in their lives...Then you're screwed.

 

Good luck with whatever decision you make!

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There is a book called "End of Faith" and one called "Letter to a CHristian Nation" both by the same author. I have heard they are very pwerful, IF the reader is even a little bit reasonable and intelligent. The book End of Faith turned a Born Again guy I know into a complete atheist. (The guy was a church Elder) Is your husband intelligent?

 

 

 

My husband is an alcoholic. We've been married 12 years. We were separated the entire month of August because of his drinking. He was arrested for DUI, and a few other things like harassment (he doesn't remember what he done to harass the people), driving on the wrong side of the road, revoked license. Anyway I took him back and he's already been to court. He could have went to prison but his boss got him an attorney that went to church with him. So now my husband is really trying, "scared straight" I guess. Another co-worker has started taking him to a Church of God. He knows that I am an ex-christian, we cannot discuss religion. He says that only God can help him stop drinking. I told him he's swapping one addiction for another..religion. This has upset me almost as much as the drinking. I put up with his shit for 12 years and now he's turning into a holy roller!

Yes I guess it's better than him being a drunk, but I know it won't be long before he wants me to go, even though I've told him it won't happen. Now on the toilet he reads bible quotes for your everyday living. Blah! I'm sure they will start wondering why his satanic wife won't come to church, and this is confusing our son. Do I support him? Do I compromise my own beliefs or non belief?

Why is this pissing me off so much. A year ago I would have said "Praise the Lord", but today I'm saying WTF? I really have a lot of hate for Christianity and its hard to hold it in. I'm not sure it's healthy to be this angry about it. Is it because not believing anymore is still new to me? I'm sorry this is so long, I have no one else to spout off to.

 

 

Just curious, how long has he not had a drink? I am worried he might become a "Christian alcoholic". My wifes friend is one of those. Trusts in Christ to forgive him, but does not stop the drinking. Sorry to raise that ugly specter.

 

My husband is an alcoholic. We've been married 12 years. We were separated the entire month of August because of his drinking. He was arrested for DUI, and a few other things like harassment (he doesn't remember what he done to harass the people), driving on the wrong side of the road, revoked license. Anyway I took him back and he's already been to court. He could have went to prison but his boss got him an attorney that went to church with him. So now my husband is really trying, "scared straight" I guess. Another co-worker has started taking him to a Church of God. He knows that I am an ex-christian, we cannot discuss religion. He says that only God can help him stop drinking. I told him he's swapping one addiction for another..religion. This has upset me almost as much as the drinking. I put up with his shit for 12 years and now he's turning into a holy roller!

Yes I guess it's better than him being a drunk, but I know it won't be long before he wants me to go, even though I've told him it won't happen. Now on the toilet he reads bible quotes for your everyday living. Blah! I'm sure they will start wondering why his satanic wife won't come to church, and this is confusing our son. Do I support him? Do I compromise my own beliefs or non belief?

Why is this pissing me off so much. A year ago I would have said "Praise the Lord", but today I'm saying WTF? I really have a lot of hate for Christianity and its hard to hold it in. I'm not sure it's healthy to be this angry about it. Is it because not believing anymore is still new to me? I'm sorry this is so long, I have no one else to spout off to.

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Without going too much into my own past, I'll just say that I know from experience that religion, or "getting saved," really does help some people to overcome addictions. From what I've seen, Christian addictions programs work better than 12 step programs. Religion is a crutch, but some people need that crutch, they can't function without it. Personally, I'd say that the most important thing is that your husband must stop drinking. Whatever he needs to do to stop that is worth it, even if he ends up a Christian. If his being a Christian destroys your marriage, everyone in your family will still be better off than if he were drinking. I'd deal with the drining issue first, and not even think about anything else until that's dealt with.

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