I've been dating a wonderful recovered heroin addict for almost 8 months now. I practically live with him because my job is closer to his house than mine, and i work long overnights. About a month and a half ago on my lunch at work i didn't call him like i usually did and he called me, all upbeat, happy and talkative. Now although he is a generally happy person, i had never heard him so openly excited about life. I figured he was just drunk, or maybe because he was at a party and saw a lot of old friends of his he was just generally happy to see them, as he had just done 2 1/2 years in state prison for heroin possession and check fraud/forgery. I let it go, but a couple weeks later I had questioned him about his possible use of Suboxone. He had dropped a wrapper out of his pocket, came up with a lame excuse and again, i let it go. I don't really mind my bf using suboxone at all as a management program, as it will keep him off the skag..however, lately he has been SEVERELY depressed, and he blames it on the season and time of year. I don't buy it.. even though I am around him almost all day, I do go home every other day for hours at a time, sometimes days at a time, to give us each space. I am terrified he is using again. I can't sleep, i've been extremely mistrusting of him, resorting to going through his phone and facebook messages for the truth that he won't give me unconditionally, and i won't ask for. I've seen him asking if "any bags were on the menu today" and in his call log him calling his old junky friends one after the other in succession, barely minutes apart..he's lost interest in me, in our sex life, in his own well-being. I don't know what to do. I feel horrible for going through his private life like i have been, but he keeps these little secrets, sometimes really stupid stuff, or purposely leaves out details and then brings them up after the fact. I'm not trying to bring him down, and "prove i was right all along," i just want him to talk to me, open up and maybe i could help him through it. Instead i feel like **** for snooping in his stuff, and he is probably relapsing HARD. I just want him to be happy and healthy..idk what i should do.
Of course you want him to be happy and healthy. But what about you? What about your happiness and health? We who live with and love addicts lose ourselves in their addiction.
Of course he's using again. That's because he never was recovered. Without participation in a recovery program like NA or NA or something along those lines, you can pretty much count on a merry-go-round of relapse. It's up to you whether you want to live with that kind of chaos in your life because nothing you do or say can get past his love for the drugs.
If you aren't ready to give up on this relationship right now, I urge you to check out some Al-Anon meetings so you can gain a true understanding of what you're dealing with and how to keep yourself from drowning in his addiction. One of the hardest things to understand is that we can't save them from themselves. They have to do that all by themselves. We can only be responsible for our own actions.
Being in a relationship with an addict is a very lonely and frustrating place. The drugs will always come first. They'll tell you anything they think you want to hear and they lie, cheat and steal to avoid true recovery. Sorry to be such a downer, but it's the blunt, honest truth. It's so hard to believe that this person who says he loves you actually loves something else far more. Until their lives become completely unmanageable, they can't and won't change. We who are in their lives can only step aside and let the damage happen. Without those consequences, why should they bother to change?
He really is such a wonderful person. It breaks my heart that after all of the things he's accomplished after getting out of jail (he's even making deans list in college) could fall apart if I throw up the deuces. You're right though, I've never been so lonely in all of my life. I feel abandoned, and betrayed. I finally confronted him about it 2 days ago, after I had made this post. He admitted that he had used a couple weeks ago, and he has been relapsing on and off during our entire relationship. I really am heart broken. I don't want to lose him, in any way..he is my world.. But I can't continue to let him think that I will be here if he continues to relapse. I want to grow old with him, and be happy, and clean. I myself, do smoke pot occasionally and recreationally do some drugs. But only young experimentation, nothing I would ever plan on doing for the rest of my life. I would stop doing everything altogether if only he would get clean, and we could be sober together. My love for him is greater than any substance , gets me higher than anything I've ever done..i just wish he felt the same way and unfortunately that may never be the case.
Why not stop recreational use altogether right now? Waiting for him to jump first only means you have that much more time to become an addict just like him, and honestly, he could give a rat's rear end if you use or not. Frankly, addicts usually prefer a partner in crime anyway so they can pretend that what they do is normal. And never say "never" - it can happen to anyone. Addicts don't begin their journeys of addiction by jumping right into daily use or waking up one day thinking, "I'm going to be a drug addict!" It starts with recreational use; slowly those recreation days turn into every day of the week, and then they realize they have to use just to be normal and not dope sick when a buzz is nearly impossible to obtain.
Addiction is an equal opportunity disease. It happens to good people, bad people, average people... anyone. That's why it's so dangerous to dabble in substance abuse. You just don't know if you're going to be the unlucky one to get sucked into the death sentence. And don't forget the real physical and mental damage that substance abuse does to the brain and organs.
Addicts are really good at emotional blackmail too. They're far better at using the "if you loved me" whip than we are. "If you really loved me you would": not leave me, not get angry with me, pay my rent, medical bills, food bills, not question my physical and emotional absences, and certainly NEVER question my drug use or I will harm myself, harm you or leave you or whatever. They're really great at doling out consequences to other people for their substance abuse. If we fall for it, they will never change. Why should they? They have zero motivation as long as all their needs are being met while they're using.
Take this time to do some work on yourself. You're just as addicted to him as he is to his drugs. In rehab parlance, that's called co-dependent and enabling behavior. Right now, he just isn't capable of returning the love you lavish on him. He isn't capable of sharing and pursuing the dream you have of growing old and having a real life with him. It's not personal. It's just the way active addicts think. When you can love yourself and your own life more than trying to turn him into something he isn't and may never be, you'll be on your way to really living. Al-Anon and/or a private chemical dependency counselor can help you with all that. It's not something to be ashamed of either. We've all either been there, are there now, or moving in that direction. I was a huge skeptic myself until I really got going with my own recovery. What a shock! :-)
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