Addiction, Co-Addicts, and Love




People with childhood and early life trauma process things differently from people who didn’t have that experience. Not better. Not worse. Just different. That is just a fact. I am no exception to processing things from a place of trauma

I have learned some things recently, things that no one should ever have to learn. Terms that no one should ever have to know the definitions to. I have felt feelings no one should ever have to suffer. All the things that someone who loves an addict is forced to endure.

I have a confession. I am madly in love with someone who suffers from a disease no one likes to talk about. A lot of people don’t even accept that it is a disease. We were supposed to get married this coming November. This disease is not a moral failing on anyone’s part. It is not a choice to physically crave an escape from emotional pain. I am madly in love with an addict.

Today marks 20 days since he left. This time. It took me a week to locate him to even talk to him. It took me stalking trap houses and confronting strangers and making demands of where he was. Completely disregarding my own safety.

When he finally called me from some unknown number, all he could say was that he had been trying to get a hold of me. All of what he was doing was for us. He doesn’t even remember that conversation, but I do. Every delusional bit of it.

I continue to talk to him. Text with him. Always he says “I love you and I miss you” but never “I want to stop this and come home.” That is what I keep waiting for. “I’m sorry Baby, I want to get help and I am coming home to fix everything I broke.” I know he is not going to say this, or anything even closely resembling this. I know I need to stop communicating at this point because it is emotional cutting. If I was using an actual razorblade, I would have bled out already. But I keep thinking if I can just hear his voice one more time, and he hears mine, it will fix everything.

I have done things that I never thought I would do. I have been thrown backwards into being someone that I worked really hard for a lot of years to stop being. I have even harassed people I know he is with through text message and instant messenger, to try and get a message through to him, and scream at the universe that this person is loved and has a home – please fucking make him go home!

I have to stop myself from my self-harming behavior. No one can make me stop. Just like no one can make him stop his self-harming behavior. No one can make him want to come home and get help. Only he can choose. Only he can decide that what he is doing isn’t working for him anymore.

Something painful I have learned, is that I am a co-addict. I am addicted to him. Addicted to the life I was supposed to have with him. Compelled to do anything and everything to try and hang on to a reality that doesn’t exist anymore. Willing to sacrifice everything just to feel like we used to feel. Exactly what he is doing by getting high.

I slipped into this black hole of trying to make sure he was ok – because I didn’t want to lose him. I don’t want him to get arrested. I don’t want him to die. The cold hard truth is that I already lost him.

My friends are frustrated with me. They have seen for a long time that he is destructive for me. I am thankful that they still love me, but to be honest I don’t know if our friendship will ever be the same. I feel like I broke it because I was struggling too long trying to fix something so broken and I got lost.

They have healthy boundaries. They were done with me a while ago, because I couldn’t stop hemorrhaging emotionally. I pray for forgiveness.

He is as driven and compelled to use drugs just as strongly as I am compelled to try and keep him from using and to help him get help.

I am stuck in my own Hell of thinking that if I could just love him harder, he will stop. If I can just say or text one more thing, it will be the right thing, and it will get through to him, and he will stop. I let my old demons whisper in my ear, “if he loved you enough, he would stop. You weren’t enough for him. If you were worth fighting for he would fight. You aren’t worth fighting for”

At the same time I imagine his demons are whispering in his ear, “Just one more high and you will be good. Just one more day out in the streets won’t kill you. You can stop any time you want. You can go home anytime you want. You are in control. You aren’t affecting anyone else. You don’t need anyone else. No one loves you like we love you. No one understands you like we do.”

It is the most devastating pain to watch someone you love self-destruct right before your eyes. The pain is excruciating. It is physical pain. My chest feels like there is a hole in it. Sometimes I cannot breathe. In my head I know there is absolutely nothing I can do to make him stop. In my heart, I don’t want to give up on him. I am heartbroken.

The self-destruction is real, for both me and him. I keep trying to pick up all the broken and shattered pieces to put our life back together, but all I do is keep cutting myself over and over, deeper and deeper.

I could talk about all the horrible things that have happened, and things he has done since he started using again – but I know that is the addict and not the man I love underneath. I pray for him daily.

I would rather try and find something good – some painful lesson to be gained here – because wherever there is pain, there is a lesson.

I have learned that I need to look deeper into my own past trauma, and childhood relationships and experiences, so that I can figure out how I chose an addict as a partner. Why I ignored the signs. Why are addicts are drawn to me to begin with, because he is not the first addict in my life. He is just the first person I loved more than myself, and was willing to lose everything to keep.

He and I have a lot in common. Exactly the same, and nothing alike. We were the perfect combination of jumbled contradictions. We both love as hard as possible and live by the motto of being all in, or not in at all.

I love him fiercely and madly still. I will always be here, whenever he chooses to fight for himself again. All I can do is pray that he chooses before it is too late. I promised him I would always be on his side and by his side – as long as he was by mine.

I need to remember that last part, and that he left.

#love #addiction #coaddiction #faith #recovery #perseverance #hope #selfcare




One comment

  1. Constance Dent · · Reply

    My heart breaks for you both as well, it is an impossible situation as you have noted. My prayers continue for both of you and will continue for as long as I breath. You are totally Logable and loved. Maybe the attraction of Addict personalities to you is to offer them a life-line to overcome their addiction. Whether they can take the help or not, it is the gift you are able to extend. Many would not go so far. God must believe in your inner goodness and strength to give you such challenging tasks. Believe that there IS a rainbow after this storm too. All will be as it is supposed to be and you won’t know the why till you can ask God directly.
    I love you very much and when you hurt, so do I. Keep loving and trusting. That is the right thing to do.

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