Bottled Up

Help and Support for people living with an alcoholicProfessional therapists bringing you their 
unique experience of both sides of the problem.

Bottled-Up - Startegies that work!

Confidential, professional support

anytime, anywhere you want it

We believe that we are now probably the largest independent website on the topic

Providing help since 2008

Live with an alcoholic? - Professional help for the partners of alcoholics

You have come to the right place.  We have help and support here that could change your life.

We will

  • Help you to stop doing the things that don’t help your situation
  • Show you how to start empowering yourself
  • Provide you with accurate information
  • Give you insight into the mind of the alcoholic
  • Equip you with strategies to make your life better
  • Introduce you to a support network of people in the same position
  • Present you with a new, more useful method, of looking at alcohol problems
  • Teach you about the psychological principles of behaviour change and how you can you can use them with your drinker.


Real life personal experience of alcoholism

The resources in Bottled Up are not just a nice theory.  We understand what it is like to live with an alcoholic, to watch someone you love destroying themselves and your family life.  We have been there!

"it's like someone reached into my life, my brain, my very existence and watched and heard it all as a fly on the wall. The common sense you empower the family of the drinker with is invaluable."  Bottled Up Member 2015

Lou has been a therapist with her own private practice for over 20 years.  But she was married to an alcoholic until he died of cancer.  So she knows the joys, the pain, the bewilderment, the frustration and the anger that you feel because she has experienced it all. Find out more about Lou

John is a psychologist who wrote and taught the masters course on addiction.  He trained alcohol counsellors, psychologists and GPs how to treat alcoholics.  But 30 years ago John was given six months to live because of his alcoholism and drug use.  He has been clean and sober since.  He knows what it is like to be an alcoholic and what goes on the alcoholic’s head.  Find out more about John

I turned to Bottled Up in November of last year at a time when I was feeling completely out of my depth, powerless and desperate. Today I don't feel like that - in no small part because of the community and wealth of advice and literature (a lot in video form as well) that I found on the website.  Bottled Up Member 2015

How does the alcoholic think?

We (Lou and John) created this unique resource for you and people like you.  We want to help you to understand the dynamics of living with an alcoholic.  How many times have you asked yourself, your friends, doctor, questions like:-

  • Why does he* drink like that? 
  • Why won’t he change? 
  • Why does he lie? 
  • Why can’t he admit he is an alcoholic?
  • How can he say he loves me and drink the way he does? 
  • What should I tell the children? 

*(We are not being sexist here, we fully recognise that women can be alcoholics as well as men, but since writing he/she (or any other genderless language)  becomes so cumbersome to write, and to read, we will stick to he as men are still the more common by 2:1).

In the members’ section of Bottled Up we try to answer these, and many more, questions.  You can find our answers in articles, videos and audios that you can download to your MP3 player.

Because Lou lived with an alcoholic and John was an alcoholic, we can discuss both sides of the issue to give you a much clearer and deeper understanding than would otherwise be possible.  Also because both of us are passionate about helping people so that they do not have to suffer the same problems as we did, we are very open regarding what we did and what we felt. 

Because of that we can give you a unique insight into the mind of the alcoholic, explaining, for example, why some of the strategies you use to try and change your drinker actually make things worse.  We provide you with a translation of the language of alcoholism so that you do not need to puzzle why things rarely turn out as you expected. Have a look at some videos about how the alcoholic thinks.

I love this program. I've learned so much about myself, and about my husband's issue on this site. You've really done well and provided some great help for a lot of people. I think you both should feel very good about that!   Bottled Up Member 2014

Is this an Alanon meeting online?

No we are not just an Alanon meeting online, Bottled Up is an independent website that has grown over the last 8 years.  We have a lot of admiration for Alanon and the help and support that they provide for the families of alcoholics.  However all the material in Bottled Up, and the program it offers, is a product of modern knowledge about problem drinking and the psychology of change.  This research is then converted into plain speaking and behaviours that you can easily bring into your life to make a difference.

"signing up to your website has been an absolute blessing"

                                                   Bottled Up Member 2015


Who should join Bottled Up?

You should join Bottled Up

  • If you live with an alcoholic and feel frustrated, angry, sad, frightened and at the end of your tether
  • If you still love your drinker (although some days you may feel you hate him). Find out more about the dillema of loving the alcoholic.
  • If you want that person that you chose to spend your life with to come back into your life but find that his other drunken self is spending too much time in your life instead.
  • If you feel a sense of shame that you are living with a drinker
  • If you find that you are becoming increasingly socially isolated
  • If you just want help, support or information about living with alcoholism
  • If you want strategies that will empower you to take control of your life

If you fit any or all of these criteria then come and join us in Bottled Up – We can help.

Most people say, yes that all sounds good but what do others think about it.

Well never mind what we say, read what our members have said.

If you want to join us then click here.  Join bottled Up

Lou and John

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  • stories
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We respect your privacy and confidentiality.  Because Bottled Up is a membership website only the members have access to the membership section.

You can be as active as you like or you can use the resources without interacting with anyone.

All material copyright Lou Lewis and John McMahon © 2016

All photographs by Cassia Lewis
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