I'm in need of advice and I also just want to vent my frustrations. My husband is Scottish, I'm American, and lately he's been drinking what I consider excessive amounts of alcohol, but he claims it's his culture and I'm just being controlling and a nag.
We met in college, so we were drinking a lot then as college students do, but once I finished college the excessive drinking stopped. I feel like that's normal for most college students. I'm not opposed to alcohol, but I can't drink like I used to and I'd rather not be hungover. I don't want him to not drink, but I'd like him to see that what he's doing to himself is going to put him in an early grave. He drinks, smokes, is overweight (has put on 25lb since we were married in 2008) and doesn't get ANY exercise. As his wife, I love him and would like to be with him into old age, but he doesn't see me asking him to stop smoking, cut back on the drinking and go on walks with me as me CARING about his health. He sees it as me being controlling.
He's in oil and used to work a job where he was gone for anywhere from a few days to three weeks and was home anywhere from a few days to two weeks. It ended up that he was gone about half the year. So, when he was gone he wasn't drinking and when he was home, he was drinking, but not too excessively. He probably had 5-6 beers every other day - nothing compared to what he drinks now.
We've moved and he's now in an office based job, so he's home all the time. On a week night, he'll go out with his friend (not a good influence - before we got here, he was sitting in a bar drinking 10+ beers alone on a typical night, lying to his girlfriend who just had his child telling her he has to meet with clients) and he'll say "I'm going out for a FEW beers and will be home in an hour or two" and ends up staying out for 4-5 hours and drinking 10-15 beers. That's not normal for an adult who has a full-time job and is out for drinks with friends on a week night, in my opinion. That's normal for a frat boy, who is binge drinking. If I didn't stop him, he'd be doing this on week nights 3+ times per week, because his friend asks him to come out, but I tell him no and end up having to nag him to stay home. He does this every single week, one or two times. When he does stay home, he'll easily have 6-8 beers on a week night. On the weekend, we usually go out for dinner and drinks and I'll have 2-3 drinks, sometimes a couple more, and he'll have around 10. He never has a day off, although I don't think he has a dependency on alcohol. I think he just likes it.
I'd like him to actually spend time with me, but he'd rather go sit in a bar with his friend, who he works with and has seen all day. He invites me, but why would I want to go sit with his chauvinist, jerk friend who abandons his girlfriend and new baby on a regular basis so he can get drunk? I also think if you're going out for after work drinks, you should go to a nice bar and be social with a couple of drinks. I have no issue with doing that. However, they go to a seedy, gross bar and sit by themselves, downing as many bars as possible. Can you see why that isn't something I'd want to do?
I hate nagging him, but what can I do? I complain that he's spending an insane amount of money on beer, but he claims he makes plenty of money (although we have no savings). I complain that the drinking and smoking is going to kill him and he claims I'm being selfish and telling him what to do, although I just don't want to be a widow when I'm 50. If not wanting to be a widow is selfish, then I'm selfish. Beers here are expensive, so when he goes out for 15 beers, that's over $100, so hundreds of dollars each month is going towards nothing but beer.
He keeps saying it's his culture, but his dad is what I would consider a regular drinker, and he doesn't drink even close to the same amount. He'll have 5-6 pints on a typical weekend night and maybe 10 pints throughout the week. So, that's 15 or so beers in a week, when my husband easily goes through 50.
I just can't understand why someone would want to sit around inside and drink that much, when we're in such a beautiful place (just moved to Canada from the UK) where there's beautiful hikes and scenery everywhere. I get out and spend a good 2-3 hours everyday hiking, and in the past four months, he's been on two walks with me, excluding his pathetic 1/4 mile "treks" to the bars.
I'm at a loss. I've thought about leaving, but I love him and would be lost without him. I'm also not in a place where I could just pack a bag and go to stay with my parents. I'd have to buy a $1,000 plane ticket to do that. He needs to change, but obviously what I've been doing isn't working and it's only made things worse. What can I do?