Does he have an addiction?

In the last few months I’ve heard two stories of midlife women learning the man they were dating had an addiction.

* A 60-something woman had met a similarly aged man and they started seeing each other. She enjoyed their local short outings and he seemed to be a good companion. They decided to take a vacation to Hawaii.

The first morning they arose and she asked what he wanted to do. She’d wanted to sight-see, snorkel and swim in the adjacent lagoon, take in a local show, shop and go for an easy hike.

He said he wanted to have a few mimosas then have lunch. Then he planned to “relax” at the hotel for the rest of the day. They went to the bar for his mimosas, then he had more during lunch. After lunch, she wanted to get out of the hotel, he told her to enjoy herself and he’d be at the bar when she returned. He didn’t move except to the dining room for dinner, then back to the bar for after dinner drinks. He drank from 10 a.m. to midnight. She had a glass of wine with dinner, then got bored and went to bed.

Her vacation with her partner turned out to be her doing everything by herself as he drank all day long. She expressed her disappointment and he said it was his vacation and he’d do what he wanted. Needless to say, they were not a couple when they returned home.

* A 58-year-old widow found a local man with similar interests. They played tennis, went to the movies, and cooked for each other. When they dined together once a week, she noticed he could polish off a bottle of wine by himself. She liked a glass or two, so didn’t think it was a big deal. Until they went away for the weekend.

Like the aforementioned guy, she witnessed his drinking all day long. He was too tipsy to hike, bike, play tennis — none of the things they’d discussed doing beforehand. She realized she hadn’t noticed his drinking at home because they weren’t together for more than a few hours, and he abstained during those activities. He never seemed sloshed, so she had no idea he had a drinking problem.

She, like the woman mentioned above, realized his drinking was more important then she was. Even after the women shared how the men’s drinking affected them, the men had no desire to work toward sobriety.

Alcoholism is a disease — one that can be very difficult to address and keep in check. However, I have many friends in recovery and they tell me that with desire, strong will, and often support from others it can be kept in check. However, if one doesn’t want to do anything about it, there’s not a lot someone else can do, other than make sure you don’t become an enabler or victim.

I briefly dated a man who I quickly saw was an alcoholic, although he didn’t see it. In our day’s outing, he had two drinks every few hours. First, it was with lunch. Then, a mid-afternoon “snack.” Then before-dinner drinks, wine with dinner, and a few after-dinner drinks. This was too much for me to feel comfortable. He became more and more surly as he drank. We didn’t continue after that outing.

Have you dated someone whose addiction become apparent? If so, how did you deal with it?


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6 responses to “Does he have an addiction?”

  1. Kris Avatar

    I met a man who is a long-term recovering alcoholic — no alcohol for years. But interestingly, he seems to have shifted his compulsive, addictive tendencies to womanizing — meets new women constantly –in his home city and all over the country, wherever he travels on business. He ALWAYS online (that is, whenever I am on). Since he is a successful businessman, I doubt he will ever have a shortage of new candidates to feed this compulsion… which he claims is more of a search for a needle in a haystack.

  2. Meari Avatar

    Yep. Dated a guy similar to the one in the 58-yr old widow story. When he was on vacation, he spent the entire week at the bar. Needless to say, that relationship didn’t last.

  3. Jay Avatar

    Unfortunately many men are single because of these compulsive behaviors in the first place.

  4. Jasmine Italroz Avatar

    I can relate this king of addiction. Because, my boyfriend also is very alcoholic. I always advice here even her parents to to stop drinking too much liquor but still he never did. It seems that being alcoholic is already part of his daily life. I remember one time when I told him to choose between me as her girlfriend or his being addicted with alcohol? I remember then, that he only stop drinking alcohol for a couple of days but after that, he then go back to his old habit. Really don’t know what to do. I know, I love him..but what should I do? Is it fine to give up our relationship if he still continue his addiction in alcohol? or I will carry and understand him forever? 🙁

  5. Mary Italroz Avatar
    Mary Italroz

    Alcohol was the issue that lead my boyfriend and me into misunderstanding oftentimes. Because he really can’t live without alcohol and I don’t know why. I can’t find how to stop him. 🙁