I have been dating a wonderful guy for a few months now, however over the last couple weeks things have changed...he was arrested and forced to attend NA meetings, while at his first meeting he came to the conclusion/revelation that he is addicted to pain pills, and has been for years. I had know something was off(lack of sex and lack of money despite the long hours at work) but had no idea what...now I'm trying to help him through this as best as I can, but I'm torn between my needs in a relationship and being there for him. I NEED an adult relationship, and the past two weeks have been more me trying to support him emotionally then anything else. I have a huge attachment to him, but I guess I just need to know there is a light at the end of the tunnel, I need to know that things will eventually go back to the happy relationship we had up until two weeks ago...I have had a relationship in the past in which I stuck by my ex for three years while he was in prison and 6mo before he was released he broke up with me...so I think my fear may lay in that situation...I don't feel like I am able to discuss these things with my bf yet, because of how fragile and new his recovery process is...I have no idea... I think what I'm trying to ask is, Is it healthy for him to be in a relationship while he is this early on in recovery? And what should I expect if I decide to stay with him? Will this ever be a relationship again? ....
I think that if you two really love each other, then there is nothing wrong with being there for him. Pain pill addiction is very serious. And it creeps up on you long before you ever realize what a long, dark road youre headed down. Its hard because, a lot of times, you get them from your doctor. And because many opiate addicts are functional, its easy to mask the problem and stay in denial for a long time. You don't really understand that anything is wrong until something bad happens to you.
I cant say whether or not he needs to be in a relationship. But he does need support. I have been putting my boyfriend through hell over these stupid pills, and he is happy that Im ready to quit. I am grateful that he is there for me, and wonder how far Id make it on my own. I believe that when it's all over, I will be a better mate, and make him happier than he's ever been. And when its all said and done, I feel like Im going to be so thankful that he helped get me there.
I know that your bf is emotional right now, but maybe you do need to talk about it. Find out what he thinks and how he feels. Look up the signs and symptoms of opiate withdrawal to get a better understanding, and decide if you really want to be there for him.
Thank you so much for you're response! He originally started taking pain pills because of a severe back injury, so I can see what you mean about the addiction creeping up. He has now been clean for 12 days, and he's going through it... He's very depressed and angry...I live an hour away so I can't be there everyday, but I am there every chance I get. He also has an issue with being reckless with the money he did have after feeding his addiction. Such as buying super expensive car equipment and tools. I tried to never mention it, because he is an adult, but could that be a symptom? Or just his personality... I do love him very much., im just scared/worried about what's to come...
Before I started using pain pills, I also spent a lot of money. I believe that I have an addictive personality. So no matter what, Im going to be addicted to something, whether its shopping, sex or drugs. My psychiatrist told me that all this could be a symptom of bipolar. I think it has something to do with being impulsive, and the highs of the disorder. He may have depression or bipolar. And if he;s never been diagnosed, he may not know why he's so angry, depressed and irresponsible. Bringing up mental health may cause an argument, but may be part of the problem. A lot of addicts self medicate to deal with their emotions. I know I did.
I'm in recovery and it is not uncommon for significant others to stand by the addict and/or alcoholic in the beginning of their recovery. But I would suggest going to meetings yourself. If you are informed and also getting the help you need (addiction is a family disease, all are affected) then you will be helping your partner more then you know. Also encourage him to make male friends with more recovery time than him to spend time with while you are at a Alanon or co-dependency meeting. Even the NA group he attends might have more information about a meeting for you. The only way you both will have that wonderful life you imagine is if you both persue outside help. Hope this perspective was helpful.
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