20 yr age diff, blended family, alcohol
This may be the length, so please be patient.
My husband and I have been married for 2 yrs, together for 4.
I have 3 children from a previous marriage; 13,11 and 7.
He has 2 grown sons.
My husband and I have a 20 year age difference between us.
He's always been a bit difficult when it comes to dealing with my children.
He always feels like I'm not doing enough to discipline them or I'm not giving them enough responsibilities.
He doesn't mind giving me his opinions on those matters, even in front of the kids.
I find myself becoming extremely defensive with him about them.
I will feel as though I have said what needs to be said (if they've done something wrong) and he will chime in after me and lecture them for what seems like forever.
Then turn around and bring the same subject up several times that day (and possibly even beyond that).
I'm not talking about serious infractions here, I'm talking about 'not cleaning up their dishes' or 'forgetting to make the tea'.
So I get defensive and then we wind up arguing about it.
He makes little comments to them - for example, my 7 yr old will play with my hair sometimes.
But when she does, he says it's just to "butter" me up for what she wants.
He not only says this to me but to her as well & repeatedly.
Every now and then, we find some way to agree on things and our lives will go smoothly for a few days or maybe even a week but then it's back to the same old thing.
With all of this, it's difficult enough.
Now to add on the rest of the story.
Several months ago, he started drinking hard liquor.
A little here, a little there.
It was all fine.
As long as he was in a good mood - I sure didn't mind.
But it's become worse.
And now it's to the point where I dread him drinking.
We've had many talks about it and he will say he's not going to do it or he will slow down or maybe even switch to an alcohol with lesser proof.
Then there are times when he says I'm being a "b*tch" and that he doesn't have a problem.
Over the last 2 months, he has acted like a complete idiot a few times in front of friends and family.
It has become an embarrassment.
When he gets "lit", he gets very defensive and combative.
Tonight, we planned a bonfire.
Within 2 hrs, he was passed out in front of the fire sitting in a lawn chair.
I'm at a loss for what to do.
I don't want to go through another divorce but I don't want to spend my life this way and I'm pretty sure it's not really an ideal situation for raising 3 kids.
Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
He seems to be very frustrated and someone who nitpicks. Obviously, patience is not a virtue he endorses. Have you suggested seeking marriage counseling together or an alcohol rehab program for him? You have been through an ordeal before and would not want to be uprooted again, understandably so. However, if he is averse to the idea of seeking counselling or taking any corrective steps, it's best you seek separation, even if not a formal divorce. Your kids are at a very tender, impressionable age and this environment is clearly not conducive to their growth.