Alcoholism is a serious addiction that can have a devastating impact on relationships. When an alcoholic spouse drinks, they may become angry and aggressive. This can be a very frightening and stressful experience for the spouse and other family members.
If you are living with an angry, drunk spouse, knowing how to deal with the situation safely and effectively is important. This article will provide you with information on recognising the signs of alcohol-induced aggression, advice on how to deal with an angry drunk spouse, the benefits of focusing on your own well-being and the importance of seeking support and help.
Recognising the Signs of Alcohol-Induced Aggression
There are a few signs that you can look for to help you recognise if your spouse is becoming aggressive when they are drunk. These signs may include:
- Increased irritability
- Increased verbal aggression
- Physical aggression, such as pushing, shoving, or hitting
- Threats of violence
- Destruction of property
If you notice any of these signs, it is important to take steps to protect yourself and your family.
Why Can Drinking Alcohol Make You Angry?
When it comes to alcohol addiction, there is a link between alcohol and anger. Drinking alcohol can sometimes lead to some people becoming angry much more easily. This can then result in sudden aggressive outbursts, different forms of verbal abuse and sometimes violent behaviour. People may feel like their angry temper gets out of control once they have consumed alcohol. This can then develop into a more serious problem for the person and the people around that person.
Certain people are more likely to experience anger problems when they are drunk. This includes people who:
- Regularly binge drink
- Experience anger problems when sober
- Have family members and friends who are also angry when drunk
It is more common for men to become angry when drinking than women, however this can happen to any person.
Advice on How to Deal With an Angry Drunk Spouse
If your spouse is drunk and angry, the best thing you can do is to remove yourself from the situation. This may mean going to another room, leaving the house, or even calling the police if you feel unsafe.
It is also important to avoid arguing with your spouse when they are drunk. This will only make the situation worse. Instead, try to stay calm and let them know that you will talk to them about the issue when they are sober.
Here are some additional tips for dealing with an angry, drunk spouse:
- Set boundaries. Let your spouse know that you will not tolerate their aggressive behaviour.
- Be consistent. If you set boundaries, be sure to enforce them consistently. This will help your spouse learn that their behaviour is unacceptable.
- Seek professional help. If your spouse’s alcohol use is causing significant problems in your relationship, it is important to seek professional help. A therapist can help your spouse address their drinking problem and learn how to manage their anger in a healthy way.
It may be worth having an open conversation with your loved one. Be open and honest with them about how you are feeling and how their behaviours are impacting you and the people around them.
If you choose to speak to the person about their alcohol problem and drinking, try to ensure you do not have a conversation about it when they are drunk. Instead, you should approach the conversation when they are sober, as they will have a higher chance of being receptive at this time and may be more likely to see the need for change. You can get in touch with professionals to stage a family intervention for support.
The person’s behaviour may frustrate you, but it is key that you avoid being confrontational yourself. Instead, try to calmly explain how their drunken behaviours are affecting you and everyone else that it’s affecting. Reinforce the fact that you are worried about them and tell them that you are willing and prepared to support them through recovery. If the alcoholic becomes aggressive or defensive when you’re talking to them, try removing yourself and come back to the conversation at another time.
Focusing on Your Own Well-Being
It is important to remember that you are not responsible for your spouse’s drinking or angry behaviour. It is also important to focus on your own well-being. This means taking care of your physical and emotional health.
Here are some tips for focusing on your own well-being:
- Take care of yourself physically. This means eating healthy, getting enough sleep, and exercising regularly.
- Spend time with people who support you. Talk to friends and family about what you are going through.
- Seek professional help if you need it. A therapist can help you cope with the stress of living with an angry, drunk spouse.
When you invest in time for yourself, you will learn how to value your own needs and time and see that mean more than being just the family member, spouse, or friend of an alcoholic. Practice self-care in all ways possible to ensure you are taking care of your own physical and mental health. Do things that you enjoy and focus on what you like, rather than putting all of your energy into the alcoholic friend, partner, or family member.
Seeking Support and Help
If you are worried about your alcoholic friend, family member or spouse, or if you are struggling yourself to deal with their behaviours, consider reaching out for help and support.
Family support programmes are available that can be very helpful. Families anonymous and alcoholics anonymous can be very helpful and will give you the chance to meet other people who are also struggling with the same problems. You will have the opportunity to speak and share your story as well as your fears. You will also be able to work through your troubles here alongside people who are going through the same things.
You may also want to consider one-to-one therapy or online therapy, as these can help you recover. You can speak to a professional and learn how to manage an alcoholic, their behaviours and ways to take care of yourself. Get in touch with our team to learn more.