From the December 1974 magazine.

When the Shoe Is on the Other Foot

Now you're sober in AA. How do you cope with a still-drinking spouse?

DOES YOUR marriage partner (man or woman) drink? Do you have sobriety in AA, and do your reactions to this drinking vary much or little? Welcome to the club. There are more of us than you realize. A comforting thought from the Al-Anons: "Somebody else's boozing won't hurt you unless you let it."

My own emotions about my husband's drinking range from irritation, anger, embarrassment, and aggressiveness to acceptance. I am irritated when I request that he not drink upon certain occasions and a fight starts. (I've been that route myself.) I rage when he embarrasses me in front of AA friends and sponsors. (Is false pride still a character defect of mine?) Childishly, he instinctively knows this is the best way to get my complete and undivided attention. Sometimes, I am very aggressive about sharing with him my experience with that old devil alcohol. The best times for me come with the acceptance that Al-Anons call "release with love." I call it a detached attitude. This detachment has to be practiced like my AA program--every day.

-- Anonymous

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