Kate's Blog

My Partner Doesn’t Support Me (Or Think I Can Quit!)

“Whenever I try to stop drinking, my husband is really negative about it.

“He drinks less than me and doesn’t understand why I can’t just have one or two like him.
“He’s always so sceptical about me trying to stop. He’s even bought me wine in the past when I’ve said I’m not drinking. How do I deal with his lack of support at home?”
If you have an unsupportive friend, partner or relative in your life, it can make you really doubt yourself.
So how do you handle it? That’s what this video is all about.

Key points

Why are they unsupportive?

Sometimes the other person has their own issues around alcohol and doesn’t want to lose a drinking buddy. But here’s the other thing: if your partner has seen you try this before – and struggle with it and beat yourself up – they won’t want you to go through that again. And if you’ve hidden some of your drinking from them, they might not even understand how you really feel about it.

Cheerleading yourself

Your success should never hinge on someone else behaving in a certain way. Ultimately, the person who should be giving you the most positive comments and cheerleading is you! So take a look at your inner self talk. Are you busy telling yourself that you can’t do it? If you work on supporting yourself first, then a negative response from someone else won’t have quite the same impact.

Remember – things change

A lukewarm response tends to come from what’s happened in the past and what the other person is anticipating will happen again. So many women join my course with partners who are unsupportive and sceptical. But it rarely stays that way. Once they start to see a shift – and realise that they’re getting the best version of their partner back – then their mindset changes pretty quickly!
⭐ P.S. My other blog on having a partner who drinks is right here.
Looking for help and support to create an alcohol free life you love? Click here to find out more about my online course.

Hi, I'm Kate

I founded The Sober School to show you there’s another way out of your shame that doesn’t involve AA or rehab. 


36 Responses

  1. This used to be me! I was on and off with my drinking for years before I took your course. My poor hubby never knew what to expect. He thought I should just cut back and complete sobriety was too strict. But I knew it had to be nothing, for me. Now I realise he doesn’t actually care whether I drink or not, he just wants me to be happy. Well Im definitely happy now. Coming up on 5 months AF!

    1. I’m so happy to hear this Ali. Congratulations on your 5 months and it’s wonderful to hear this shift in your relationship too ❤️

      1. I can so relate to this, my husband does not drink he would rather smoke marijuana an he does every day… morning noon an night!
        He continuously says he wants to stop same as I do with my drinking.
        He loves me very much an wants to make me happy in every way, He enables me, I see that now… after watching an listening to you video I think I been going at it all wrong..I will be my own cheerleader today, an say to him the words you suggested.
        Thank you for the support an putting Sober School together ❤

  2. Hi Kate – I can really relate to this. I have tried no end of times to stop or cut back and this lasts for a couple of months -tops! I am getting help with a counsellor, which he is unaware of, as he doesn’t know the extent to which I drink. But, it’s funny, he has been away for the last 5 days and I haven’t felt the urge to drink at all. Just wondering whether it’s time to rethink the relationship or whether, because he hasn’t been around, I’m feeling less pressure; I’ll have to wait and see…

    1. I think it’s probably too soon to say – but journalling on why you normally drink could bring some clarity on this 🙂

  3. This was tough to hear but I needed it. I look to my partner for support with everything as we tend to do things together. He’s a huge drinker and doesn’t really understand how I feel about this. I don’t think he’ll ever stop. I need to do this for myself.

    1. I have this problem and my husband a massive drinker and its taking a toll on our marriage now … I guess since I’ve stopped drinking ( 5 1/2 months ) I see things differently now with the dynamics within our family with children etc

  4. I’m in the opposite position on my own no partner and not many friends. Because I’m so lonely I end up turning to drinking wine while watching TV in the evenings. Trying to stop myself from doing this is extremely difficult it’s not that I drink every night its usually 2 to 3 nights per week but I drink far too much during these sessions. It would really be better to stop altogether but how do I refocus and talk myself out of doing this? Most of the time I dont really want to but then it gets to me i probably wouldn’t do this if there was a partner in my life. I always regret it the next day.

    1. The key here is to start seeing alcohol as the thing that is keeping you stuck. It’s not easing your loneliness – it’s keeping you stuck in the loneliness. Hear the difference? When we’re drinking, it’s much harder to take consistent action and do the things that would ultimately, bring an end to the loneliness. To change this pattern you will need to choose the short term discomfort of not drinking and trust that it will bring you the long term comfort of a happier, more fulfilling life.

  5. Knowledge is power… I didn’t realize it started with me and continues with me thank you so much you are a godsent…

  6. My fella initially said he thought the whole sobriety thing was a bit extreme, but was kinda ok with it, but as time has gone by and he’s seen how much happier I am, how much more energy I have, I’m not laying on the sofa trying to recover from hangovers anymore, he’s so glad for me now, so definitely the key to this is for your partner to see how much better you feel sober and then they’ll be just happy seeing you happy.

  7. I absolutely love your perceptiveness and compassion here, Kate. No blame; all empathy – and as usual, 100% on the money. My husband will enjoy watching and relating to this!

  8. I just get on with my sobriety quietly. My husband has been unsupportive in the past but since doing the “getting unstuck” course he is absolutely loving the new me.
    He can see l am more stronger and in control around alcohol. I would have given in before Kate’s course, but not now. I love living AF and don’t care what other people say. I just focus on going forward and enjoying life being sober.
    It was one of the hardest things l have ever done but it’s also the best thing l have done.

    1. That’s awesome Sharon. It’s great that he’s noticed such a difference in you. It sounds like you’re thriving in sobriety ❤️

  9. I asked my husband so many times in the past to help me. Help stop me drinking so much by going home before I had that 1 to many. Or let’s change our life style Let’s not go to the pub let’s go for a drive & a coffee. Non of the above worked. I didn’t feel he had the support for me. He didn’t like me getting drunk but seemed not to want to help me either. Then again it was my problem not his.
    I made a lot of changes in my life to help steer me away from drinking and finally found Kate Bee. I felt this was the last thing I needed to do to complete my lifestyle change.
    It has. But it gave me the understanding of the whole alcohol thing. The addiction, the myths etc. at first I didn’t tell people but now I’m confident & socialising isn’t a problem at all for me. In fact some people now drink AF with me or by it in specially for me. Also I can see friends looking at my AF drinks & I think they’re thinking, look what she’s got, AF beer mock tail etc isn’t so bad after all.
    I’ve been AF 2 years now and my husband has never said anything positive to me about my AF life but yet didn’t like me as a drunk.
    I’m so proud of myself and what I’ve achieved with no family/friend support. 🙂

  10. You are so right if the partner doesn’t help is not going great – when I stay at home and don’t want to go out ( always to drink or dinner and drinks after. And I try to stay AF home , he get all up tied and blames me that he is bored ( making me feel guilty that his life is wasting on my side ) it’s difficult because I don’t want him unhappy, he used to look after me the next day, now I need about two days to recover, I don’t think he cares at all, now no even water he brings me, I hate how I behaved when I drink and even more the Hangover …. It’s like discounting days of my life, here in the darkness of my bedroom – this situation is killing me

  11. This was very true of my story when I first stopped drinking. My partner did not know what was going on as our socialising revolved around drinking. In the beginning it caused a lot of tension and he didn’t understand why I wouldn’t/couldn’t just have one or two. 8 months on and it is our norm. He has seen that life has carried on and we still do the same things minus the alcohol for me. Over time he has started to drink less too as he has seen the benefits it has had for me. I had to rely on my own strength and willpower to do what was right for me and not give in to peer pressure which can come from anywhere..work, friends, not just partners. You are absolutely right Kate in that we have to keep going for ourselves and not worry about what other people are doing.

  12. You have helped me so much so far! I’m still very early in this journey but because of you I’m stronger than I thought I could be. i’ve tried so many times before, but this time seems different. Thank you!

  13. This made me realise that I am hovering between giving up and cutting down because I’m not really sure I want or need to stop drinking. Although my OH is not supportive of me stopping drinking I can see how my wavering between two camps must be confusing for him. I know I can stop and have done for a six month period yet I still want alcohol in my life. Yet I don’t know why as it makes me feel under par even in small quantities. I suppose I feel like it’s a bonding thing between friends and OH. But when I stopped drinking I didn’t lose friends or get divorced! Do I sound confused? I am! So no wonder my OH is!

  14. Hi Kate,
    Yes I know I am a man but your website was recommended to me by the NHS Forces Veterans…. so I logged in.
    My ‘partner’ is the mother who I care for and she is very black and white about drinking. I wouldn’t expect her to be anything else.
    My drinking has partly been caused by the working life I have led. I detoxed and abstained for nearly five years and then the company I worked for were fantastic. Until one day near Christmas, when The Engineering Manager thought it would be good to send me a wine hamper as a thank-you for the year’s work.
    It was a bit dim of him to do that but the support for alcoholics is slow and variable in quality. The support for relatives and the education for relatives and employers is almost non-existent..
    I’d love to chat to you sometime…

  15. That was a very in interesting view on the partner. I think this happened with my husband to in the beginning and he didn’t know what to do to make me happy. It’s gotten much better and I’m five months alcohol free. I don’t feel like my life has changed as much as I expected. Any tips or comments on how to make it better.

    1. That’s quite tricky for me to do, given that I don’t know you or your background. I would suggest you go back and look at how your life was before you quit. Perhaps you have some old journals or notes you could revisit. Perhaps that will help you put things in perspective and notice the subtler, more positive changes in your life 🙂

  16. My husband and his friends drink all day, every day starting early in the morning. When I met my husband I started drinking a lot and over the years have realized I don’t want to live this way. Although, I never drank all day I still drank too much. We live in a remote area with not much to do at all so everyone hangs out and drinks. I developed health issues as well. I have tried to quit many times and it’s so hard because I’m surrounded by it. No one believes I can do this. I want to do this so badly.

    1. I believe you can do it! Once a little time passes & you get used to your new normal & start feeling so much better, you’ll wonder what the hell you were thinking all that time! You’ll need to get a little creative to find new ways to connect, but I bet there are other people in your world who would welcome some new alternatives to getting drunk all the time… You can be an inspiration & trend setter!! The transition can be uncomfortable, but it is so worth it to take back control of your health & your life!! Wishing you all the best on your renassiance!!!

  17. Kate you are Amazing. I was part of the March 2021 group. I think you should start or license a non female gender (??) course. Thank you for caring I hope everything is awesome for you because you deserve it!

  18. I have just put my name on the waiting list for Sober School. I am looking forward to attending. I have a problem with wine, as described in what I’ve read thus far. Evenings are the toughest. My husband has a drinking problem he won’t admit to. Our youngest son, who still lives with us, is a recovering addict from drugs and alcohol and has recently relapsed with alcohol. My husband won’t agree to stop bringing liquor into the house. It’s not helping any of us. I hope to gain insight and ideas from this website and the course. I look forward to all of it!

  19. I happened upon this website today, but I have been looking for it for a long time! This video certainly hit the spot because I am crying. This has been my biggest problem. I have tried to quit many times unsuccessfully and now I realize how we got here. I am looking forward to registering for the July class! Thank you so much already!

  20. yikes! I see myself in this video. It gives me a different perspective and appreciation for what my husband could very well be feeling. I’ll have to be stronger in supporting myself first. Kate, so glad I stumbled upon your videos and course. I feel that everything you say is being spoken directly to me, my experiences and fears. Learning a lot ! Thank you

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