In many families, the entire family system has been organized by alcoholism.
Not every couple will or, for their own personal health should survive recovery. This could be a time of tremendous personal growth for all individuals involved or it could turn out to be a period of decline.
The classic picture of an alcoholic is someone who always drinks too much and whose life is falling apart because of it. Some people seem to be just fine even though they abuse alcohol.
Experts call these people “functional” or “high-functioning" alcoholics You can still be one even though you have a great “outside life,” with a job that pays well, home, family, friendships, and social bonds, says Sarah Allen Benton, a licensed mental health counselor and author of .
Also, the alcohol addicted individual is a master of deception and can hide the signs and symptoms of alcoholism even from themselves. On top of this, many alcoholics are functional alcoholics which means they can go about their lives as normal and yet have a hidden addiction to alcohol. It may sound obvious and yet many do not appreciate what this means for the alcohol dependent.
Every living cell in an alcoholic's body is dependent on drink.
For women, it’s having more than three drinks a day or seven a week. If you drink more than the daily or weekly limit, you’re at risk.
And it’s all still problem drinking, even if you think it's “mild.” A functional alcoholic might not act the way you would expect him to act, Benton says. He could even be a high achiever or in a position of power.
It is this author's contention that the approach for the female partner is as important in examination as that of the alcoholic himself.
As Carl Jung stated: Seldom or never does marriage develop into an individual relationship smoothly and without crisis.
In fact, his success might lead people to overlook his drinking. He might think, “I have a great job, pay my bills, and have lots of friends; therefore I am not an alcoholic,” Benton says.
Or he might make excuses like, “I only drink expensive wine” or “I haven’t lost everything or suffered setbacks because of drinking.” But he isn’t doing fine, says Robert Huebner, Ph D, of the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism.