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He is an alcoholic and I’m pregnant again. What to do ?

  • 29-10-2022 8:54am
    Registered Users Posts: 256 ✭✭madonna123

    I need some advise fast … I don’t mind if you have experience in this situation or not , I just need to see things from the outside looking in 

    I am in my late 30’s and I am 8 weeks pregnant. The father is a chronic and abusive alcoholic. We have a 16 month old child already. 

    Things started out ok, he drank socially and sometimes things got overboard. I found out a year into the relationship he had issues with alcoholism in the past and he had been to rehab twice before. 

    When we got pregnant his drinking escalated and continued that way until he went back into rehab again 6 months ago. 

    He stayed sober for 10 weeks and things are right back to the same now. 

    He disappears for days on end, never shows up to take child when I have appointments or if I have to work while she’s sick and can’t go to childcare. 

    When he does show up he is abusive, blaming me, then picks her up so he can shout at me and I can’t shout back. 

    He rarely contributes financially to the home or our daughter. 

    It all seems clean cut .. leave him BUT This is where I’m so caught up.. I’m 8 weeks pregnant and I so badly would like to have another child. 

    I work full time and am trying to build up my career , climb the ladder a little , I am studying for a professional qualification. 

    My mother had an illness several years, she now has an acquired brain injury, no short term or long term memory , I have to help out a little with her care and In turn I don’t have her to help me out with anything anymore. 

    I have some family that live not too far away but none are really in a position to help out with my daughter. 

    I am trying to buy my home I share with daughters father, owned by his sister but it’s proving almost impossible trying to save and get approval while I am the sole income in the home and paying for everything. 

    My life has literally become working full time Monday to Friday, crèche pick up / drop off , home dinner , bath , bed. The all weekend it’s just me and my daughter. 

    I rarely see anyone or do anything 

    Between trying to save for mortgage and not having anyone around. 

    Somedays it would be amazing if he just showed up and looked after her for an hour so I could go do something or just sit on my own in silence. 

    I have had to cancel so many plans from him not showing up my friends are starting to drift. 

    People say , join a class , go to a group to help but who minds the child ? I can’t afford a babysitter and family are sometimes available but not regularly or at weekends. 

    So my question is .. do I have the second child ? Would my life become even worse? Would we end up in basic poverty? 

    Is it fair to bring another child into the world that will grow up with a father that’s an alcoholic? 

    I am very much aware of issues around the effects of alcoholic parents on children , and this is something that really worries me. 

    It’s very hard to see anything from the outside right now , I’m so stuck inside the dark hole I’m lost



  • Registered Users Posts: 256 ✭✭madonna123

    I have spent the past year and a half trying to find somewhere within my budget to rent near her childcare but it’s so off limits that I’m starting to feel like this house is the only alternative to homelessness.

    I applied for all the help from local authorities but they see the house I am in as suitable accommodation , I can be declared homeless but because I ‘choose’ to leave a perfectly good home I will not have any accommodation given , not even hotel room or B&B until they reach me on a list.

    it’s actually really isolating and controlling being in these situations because as much as everyone says their help .. there’s phone lines to call , and food hampers but what use is a tin of beans or a kind ear when you’re living in your car with a one year old and still need to show up to work everyday !

  • Registered Users Posts: 256 ✭✭madonna123

    your words are making me cry

    thank you

    I know everything you are saying is so right and true I just need to get out of this hole.

    Somedays are really hard , I work from home 4 days per week , this means atleast 4/5 days a week I see nobody except for crèche drop off and pick up.

    I know all the practical things can be tackled, I think it’s just the psychological hurdles , the loneliness .

    I feel like constantly burdening my friendship with this stuff is driving a wedge between our friends and I don’t want to be that person who is constantly in a bad place

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  • Registered Users Posts: 1,297 ✭✭✭walterking

    I'd certainly agree with above posts and I suspect you know in your head that you need to separate yourself from him.

    I would suggest looking at online/ hybrid groups. There are many about and one option for you might be Toastmasters which is a public speaking and leadership club with over 100 in Ireland and very much a social format and several online and hybrid clubs.

  • Registered Users Posts: 5,987 ✭✭✭handlemaster

    I think the OP is already a single parent just needs to courage to cut this guy loose. And she has courage in bucket lots.. life would only be better without this current partner. If having a child hasn't woken him up to his issue hard to see what will. Anyhow bigger picture the two babys need looking after and with a sick mother also this guy needs to be cut loose.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 1,297 ✭✭✭walterking

    If you read the full post she finds going to classes / groups difficult due to lack of child minding options.

    She is also trying to get further in her job.

    Public speaking is any form of speaking including if a team leader or manager in a workplace. Toastmasters is also about building confidence and leadership.

    It is an ideal option for the poster as there are several hybrid clubs including two in Kildare according to Google. It will give her both a social outlet and most likely assist in her in her aim of furthering her career and that takes away some of the worry she has.

  • Registered Users Posts: 256 ✭✭madonna123

    Every single piece of advice everyone has given is both valid , correct and what I know deep down in my heart

    In response to a couple of things

    firstly , I started counselling but I had to stop , I couldn’t afford the sessions and I couldn’t afford to pay for extra child care to go to the sessions.

    I was stuck between paying a household bill or food each week and the counselling session.

    Secondly , my GP gave me medication to terminate pregnancy but I haven’t got anyone to take my daughter long enough so I can take it , I know it’s sounds like a joke but I genuinely have not got 24 hours where she is taken care of to take it.

    This is exactly what it’s like as a single parent in this isolation situation, and it’s so heartbreaking because I was an old child until 12 and I hated it , I swore I never wanted that for my family , and also at my age I think this will be my last opportunity to have a child.

    I feel a mixture of anger and sadness all at the same time.

  • Registered Users Posts: 28,038 ✭✭✭✭Wanderer78

    im extremely outraged with the way our society is completely failing you, you re currently in a crisis situation, please contact crisis pregnancy services immediately, counselling will probably be provided to you via such services

  • Registered Users Posts: 256 ✭✭madonna123

    What I don’t understand is … how do single lone parent women or men do this ?

    It’s so hard , a baby screaming and crying , managing on 2/3 hours sleep working full time and it’s just relentless, there’s no break , there’s no help.

    so many hours of the day feel hopeless, I just cry and cry

    I just don’t know how people do this and strive .

    I read stores about people who juggle this , exercise everyday , study , excel in a career and have perfect high achieving children !

    I am coming apart at the seams

  • Registered Users Posts: 8,176 ✭✭✭Furze99

    That's a difficult place to be in at the moment. I do see above you say "I have some family that live not too far away but none are really in a position to help out with my daughter."

    I think you do need to reach out to those family members and get whatever short term help is needed to get past your current problems.

    I rarely agree offhand with posters who advise - get rid of him/ her etc. But in this case, it does read very much like you have to cut ties with this man. As soon as possible & practical. Otherwise he's likely to be a source of misery and hardship for years to come.

    Best of luck.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 256 ✭✭madonna123

    Sometimes it just feels like they will see me as this nuisance , interfering with their lives.

    I am the oldest and I suppose I feel like I should have everything together and the one who helps everyone else.

    When my mum got sick I gave up my job , moved home for a year and stepped in so everyone else could get on with jobs and lives.

    Now I feel like to return home or ask for help would be like letting them down , or subconsciously telling them I’m weak and I can’t help them if they need me.

    Then the practicalities, I work from home several days per week so that’s setting up an office in the house , a small baby in a house where it’s only adults , (my parents and sisters in their 20’s)

    I guess I just feel like not being able to stand on my own two feet I’ll create an even bigger problem.

    I think my confidence is just shattered ,

    I would always jump at a promotion or try move up the ladder in my career and now I feel like if I did , my superiors would just end up being let down with my life the way it is .

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,029 ✭✭✭Tork

    I was going to say you sound like the stereotypical "eldest daughter" but you've now said that's where you fall in the family. You've shouldered a disproportionate amount of family burden and because of that, everyone else has stepped back. We've all seen it happen in families and it's a tale as old as time. You've been doing it since you were a kid. Even now you're talking about how you feel you should have your life together just because you're the eldest. That sort of talk doesn't make any rational sense whatsoever. Your younger siblings are all adults too and they're just as capable of living in the adult world as you are. I also think you're underestimating the help you might get from your family. Do you really think that none of them have the generosity you have?

    I think your embarrassment at your choice of life partner is feeding into this too. It isn't easy to admit to your nearest and dearest that you've hitched yourself to somebody as awful as your partner. Now you're trapped in a mess that you'll say is of your own making. I really hope that you can find it within yourself to swallow your pride and talk to at least one of your siblings. I think you'll find that they've noticed far more than you think and are perhaps waiting for you to reach out. They might have already figured out that you're in trouble but have been afraid to say anything in case it drives you away. All that seems to be driving you away at the moment is you. You've got a long list of problems which you've decided you can't overcome, before even talking to somebody. Is there any sibling at all you could ring up and talk to? You don't have to tell them everything. But I think spilling all of this out to somebody will help put your thoughts in order. You're bouncing all over the place at the moment.

  • Registered Users Posts: 537 ✭✭✭dbas

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  • Registered Users Posts: 537 ✭✭✭dbas

    Make a plan and grab the child and run. Reach out to your network and find the strength to do it.

    Ten weeks sober in all that time says everything. Bloody child he is. You've enough on your plate and an alcoholic parent is a horrible thing. Memories still stuck with me and I'm nearly 40. So you reared a child until one, with an alcoholic partner (you're practically rearing him and all)

    I have to admire your strength. My wife and I have 3 kids under 6. I can't imagine how she'd cope if I didn't muck in. The workload is immense in the early years. Minding an older child around a new born, while a dipso is asleep at your feet is going to be impossible.

    Sounds like you know what to do but are doubting your strength.

    You've got it.

    Do it.

    Ps. Having the second child is a choice only you can make. You can't rear a family around him, one child or two.