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Girlfriend Drug Abuse

Discussion in 'Helping an Addicted Loved One' started by Vette117, Mar 27, 2017.

  1. Vette117

    Vette117 Member

    Hello everyone, I am trying to find support and advice to help me properly help my loved one. I'm 21, she 20. We have been together for 4 years. We have had a rollercoaster ride of a relationship. We have both hit tops and bottoms, but we always came out together. We usually communicate well, but recently I noticed a few changes. I just shrugged it off as extra stress from her dying loved one. I "supported" her, but I believe she took it as an opportunity to start abusing.

    She recently broke up with me (about 2 or 3 weeks ago).

    Background: she had a loved one pass away, and ended up staying with a "friend" in her hometown for about a week. (30-45 minutes from where we live). When she had a chance to come back, she had packed everything up and told me she was leaving. It broke me, and blinded me at first. The first week was hard, and I didn't understand the severity of the situation. I fear that I may have made the issues worse in this time.

    It wasn't until after the first week that a few of my friends from that town reached out and told me of her recent behaviour. I was told that she was abusing Calodopins, and Xanax, as well as drinking near every night. It progressed, and I was told she has been sleeping around with people she barely knows, some of which are knows daily abusers of heavier drugs. She has even slept with a person in exchange for Xanax bars, and the need to feel "loved".

    The "friend" she had been staying with has no job, but sells Marijuana illegally for a living. I feel that she is enabling my girlfriends abuse, and just pulling her farther into this destructive behavior. When I visited my girlfriend to return belongings, this friend was reminding her that it was ME who caused her problems.

    This hit me hard, and I shut down for a couple days to take care of myself, and figure out how to approach. I reached out to her family, but they didn't seem to know how to approach and I'm afraid they aren't going to help.

    Despite all of the pain she has caused me, I still care for her well-being. I want to address my concerns and help her realize her destructive behavior.

    She told me that she would like time before we talked next; 2 weeks.

    I realize that I had let myself go at first, causing me to believe that it truly was my fault that this was happening. I eventually got advice telling me to take care of myself and move on. I agreed that I had to take care of myself, but I am not yet willing to move on. She deserves the care and support, but I am not sure how to proceed.

    I have thought about getting assistance from a professional, but with all the recent circumstances, it's not quite affordable.

    Thanks for your time, any advice would be appreciated.
  2. deanokat

    deanokat Community Organizer Community Listener

    @Vette117... Welcome to the community and thanks for sharing with us. I'm sorry you're going through this with your girlfriend, but I'm glad you reached out to us.

    Loving someone who struggles with addiction is an incredible challenge. The drugs they use can change their behavior and make them do things you never thought they were capable of. Drugs mess with the brain, plain and simple. Just remember what Nar-Anon and Al-Anon teach about a loved one's addiction: You didn't cause it, you can't control it, and you can't cure it. So I would disregard your girlfriend's friend's comment about you causing the problem.

    There's a really good book out there that I think could help you if you're willing to read it. It's called Beyond Addiction: How Science and Kindness Help People Change. It's written specifically for partners and parents of people struggling with addiction and it's full of amazingly helpful information. It teaches you how to communicate better with your loved one; how to talk to them to help convince them to want to change their behavior; and how to take care of yourself while you deal with your loved one's issues. It's really the best book of its kind.

    Just remember, my friend: Your girlfriend is the only one who can make the decision to get help for her addiction. It doesn't matter how much you want her to get better; she has to be the one to pull the trigger. It would be great if she could get an appointment with an addiction specialist. They could assess her situation and recommend the best next steps for her. But again: She has to want it.

    Please know that you are not alone. There are sooo many others out there who are in situations similar to yours. It's not an easy thing to deal with, but if you try to live in the moment and take good care of yourself, you will be alright. Feel free to reach out and lean on us anytime. We care.

    Sending you and your girlfriend lots of positive vibes and hope.
  3. Vette117

    Vette117 Member

    Thanks. Now that the shock is over, I know that it wasn't my fault. I will admit that I may have missed my opportunities to prevent it, but what's done is done. She alone made the decisions to dive into this situation, and she will have to be the one to decide to break out of it. I have already disregarded others comments and her comments/actions, but I noted them in order to paint a picture of the case for you.

    Next time I have a chance to talk to her, I was planning to inform her how it was affecting me, and how it could continue to negatively affect her.

    My ideology going into the next conversation is playing on her REAL emotions of us, as well as her success before. Even though she feels good about fitting in and following these people, its FAKE emotion. Letting her know that she is successful and deserving, and she has to put herself first.

    That I understand now that she feels like she wasn't good enough, and was insecure. The harder she worked, the less everything seemed to pay off, making her feel like she wasn't deserving. Life became routine, and boring. Her new life feels exciting and free, but her carelessness may lead her to harm, and to do things she will regret.

    I also plan to suggest medical treatment or support. I know not to push it, and they have to accept it. You can't save someone from themselves.

    I am still young and naive, and I have never experienced addiction or caring on this level, but I understand that even if you can't break someone from themselves in one conversation, that I am looking forward to seeing her respond in a positive way. If she fails to respond at all, I will likely turn to professional support for case advice.
    deanokat likes this.
  4. deanokat

    deanokat Community Organizer Community Listener

    Praying for you and your girlfriend, @Vette117.
  5. Vette117

    Vette117 Member

    Thank you. I have a lot of support from my loved ones, but this is still a hard process. I need all I can get..

    At this point, I just need to vent. I feel as though I'm not experienced enough to make the right decisions or say the right things to support her properly. I hate to see her suffer, but I'm aware that she is likely not going to see the value of my concern for her well-being. She still believes that I am the one who was/is causing her pain. I reminded her that happiness comes from within, not from her, or my actions.

    We spoke briefly, and she told me that she hadn't used the Xanax, or Kpins for a couple/few weeks, but I know it was a lie. She had told me she fell asleep after taking a Xan bar, which was only a week ago. I told her then that it could lead to complications, and that she should quit, but she just replied with "I Can't".

    It hurts that she feels she has to lie to me about it. I didn't judge, and I told her that if she really hadn't been using, I would be proud of her.

    I don't know a lot about Xanax, or Kpins, but she seemed extremely nervous when talking to me at first. She had been at work most of the day before she saw me. She was shaking, and stuttered when saying a few random words. I'm not sure if it was side effects of these types of meds, but I thought I would point it out.

    Other than that, I made sure to pay interest to her. I asked how her day was, work, how she was holding up, and how her family is doing. She went from sad and quiet with a frown to a sliver of a smile by the end of the conversation.

    At this point, I'm not sure that our relationship will ever be able continue. She seems intent on being separated, as she has been with someone else. I am having a hard time drawing a line between being a White Knight, and being supportive.

    Either way, I have accepted this and will still support her if/when she attempts recovery.
    deanokat likes this.
  6. Vette117

    Vette117 Member

    So, I have an update.

    I ended up going No Contact, as suggested by a friend to protect myself, and to prepare for the likelihood of moving on. I accepted this, and we didn't talk for almost a week. I had no intentions of talking to her again any time soon, but one night she sent a heavy text message.

    In the message, she had apologized for hurting me and putting me through the things she had done, and that I deserve better. She wasn't implying on getting back together, but I told her that I still care, and that if she needed an ear to talk to, shoulder to cry on, that I would be there. She just thanked me, and that was the end of the conversation at that point.

    Wednesday night, she texted me and said she would take me up on the offer. We set a time to meet. She drove to me, but she was very drunk. I told her that I was not happy about that, but I let her continue to talk.

    She poured her heart out, and she told me a lot of things that she had been going through. She has been having a hard time, and she confessed that she was "ruining her life". She said that she was stuck, and there were things she couldn't tell me or understand. I told her to let it out, and I could assist if needed, but she refused.

    She told me that a guy she had been with, used her up until she was broke, then he just ditched her and went on his way. I think this is where she hit her bottom, and realized she needed support.

    After a few hours of talking and crying, I informed her that it would be best to get out of her current situation, and she should try moving in with a family member. She refused, saying again that she was stuck, and that her previously mentioned "friend" needed her to be there. I reminded her that these people, including her friend, are only using her for their personal needs. She started getting angry, so I told her that I would like to go back home, and we could continue later.

    She got very upset at this, and promptly took me back home. When we arrived, her sister called, asking where she was. She lied, and said that she was drunk and at her house. She was supposed to go to her sisters, so that she could attend a doctor appointment the next morning. I told her that's it's probably best not to drive back to her hometown intoxicated, and that she could stay over if she wanted. She agreed, and she stayed, and I ended up going with her to her appointment yesterday morning.

    She asked me to go in with her as she was nervous, which I did. We went through her procedure, and then she decided to talk to the doctor about her recent issues. She said that she had been depressed, and that she had been drinking heavily. She didn't mention the Xanax or Kpins. He gave his opinion and analysis of her situation, and prescribed her Zoloft to treat her depression. He is a medicinal doctor, and didn't offer much on the side of psych therapy, but I asked him for suggestions on finding someone for her to talk to.

    I told her that I was proud of her, and that I was happy that she was making an effort.

    She seemed genuinely happy, and we had a great time together. We reminisced, and she was feeling good with a smile on her face when she left.

    I texted her the rest of the day, and was trying to give her happy thoughts. She is coming over today after work to pick up a couple things she left yesterday. I plan to tell her again that I am proud of her for taking steps, and to remember that I am by her side, she is not alone.

    She is still in a bad situation, but she realizes she isn't alone. I have been hoping and praying that she will find herself again, and she will come out of it.
  7. deanokat

    deanokat Community Organizer Community Listener

    Thanks for the update, @Vette117. Even though she's still in a bad situation, it sounds like there's been at least a little bit of progress. She realizes she's messing her life up, which is actually a good thing. And it's a good thing that she's talking to you and her doctor about her issues. Plus, she seems to be feeling happier. Those are definitely steps in the right direction. Progress, not perfection.

    Maybe the Zoloft will help her feel better. Although, I have to say: it would be much better if she'd stop taking the Xanax and Klonopin.

    If she could find a therapist to talk to, I think that would be a great thing. Maybe you can help her do that.

    You are a great person for helping this woman. I hope you know that. She's lucky to have you in her life, even if it is, for now, just as a friend.

    We're here for you anytime you need us. Always remember that.

    Sending more positive, healing vibes and prayers in the direction of the two of you.
    Vette117 likes this.
  8. Vette117

    Vette117 Member

    Thanks again for the support. It really means a lot! Your words encourage me to do my best, and continue to help her.

    I agree that there has been progress, and like I said before, I know this can't be done overnight. I accept that, and I will support her all the way through.

    I think she is being honest when she says she hasn't been using the Xanax or KPins recently. I'm not sure how long, but she is showing improvement. She is also working on her alcohol issues, which I think is more important. She had been drinking more and more for a few months before the breakup, and I believe that is a major factor in her depression. I have never experienced addiction or depression on this level before, and I missed the signs of onset, but I have learned a lot, and will do my best to support her.

    I will admit that it had been near impossible for me to not talk to her, but I think it really helped her realize where she was at, and it really helped me to find my place too.

    I'm starting to think that we both needed this break, no matter how painful it's been. I have learned the difference between caretaking, and caregiving, which has made me much more capable to support her in an appropriate way.

    She has been so happy these past few days, and has been opening up to me a lot more. She has actually been showing a real smile, something I haven't seen for a long time.

    I asked her what her thoughts were about finding a therapist to talk to, but she says she doesn't want, and can't afford it at this point. I told her that was fine, and that if she changed her mind, I would help her out.

    I think our time apart realigned our hearts. Even as just friends at this point, we can't help but love each other. I think my love and support has been therapy enough to get her turned around a bit.

    The only thing that seems to be holding her back, is that she feels like she doesn't deserve my love and support after everything she has done to me. She has repeated it a few times, but each time I assure her that I will let her lean on me, no matter her actions. She knows she is not alone anymore, and takes comfort in me.

    Thanks once again for the support! I'll keep you guys updated as events unfold. It feels good to get everything out, and I hope that I can help others here too.
    deanokat likes this.
  9. Vette117

    Vette117 Member

    Another Update.

    The first week after she started the Zoloft, we saw a little improvement. She was smiling a lot, and was letting her thoughts out. She visited often, and went out of her way to see me, when she had time. I had been very supportive, constantly reassuring, and complimenting her. All seemed well, and I thought she was on track to betterment.

    She did tell me that the meds made her feel "weird", and I told her she was probably just adjusting, but she should call her doctor and talk about it to be sure. She said she would get to it, but a few more days went by, and she just quit taking them completely. She didn't end up calling her doctor, either.

    I noticed her moods changing, and she became more distant. She confided in me, saying that I deserve better, and that she doesn't want to be a burden. I reassured her that she was never a burden, and that I love seeing her be genuinely happy, and hold a real smile. That I wanted her to get better.

    I made sure to ask her every day how she slept, how she is feeling, if she needed to talk, etc. She told me she was doing alright, so I left it be. I know not to push.

    Since she quit using the Zoloft, she started drinking more again, and became even more distant. I confronted her, asking if everything was alright, and if she needed anything. She said she doesn't need anything, and I just left it at that.

    I later found out she has been around another man since she started drinking again. I tried to talk to her about it, because I feel that it would likely be another downward spiral. She became frustrated and angry at this, and she ended up blocking me from all communication. She did say that I had helped her get through a lot, but she thinks distance will do us good, and she doesn't want to hurt me anymore.

    I may have engaged a little too harsh, and pushed myself away. I feel now that I should have approached differently, but what's done is done.

    I know there isn't much I can do at this point. I'm not going to attempt any communication. I figure if she realizes her situation again, she will ask for help.

    I am at a point where I'm not sure how to proceed. I don't want to keep repeating this situation if she does come back around.

    Anyways, I thank you again for the support. It feels good to get everything off my chest, and I look forward to any advice and support.
  10. deanokat

    deanokat Community Organizer Community Listener

    @Vette17... I'm sorry the situation hasn't gotten any better. Maybe it's just time for you to move on. Remember Einstein's definition of insanity: Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. You've tried so hard. But maybe your friend just needs to figure things out on her own. Maybe she eventually will; and maybe she won't. Either way, I think you deserve a break from the drama. It's not like you haven't tried to help her, you know?

    I know what I said might not be what you wanted to hear, but your life matters, too. I know there are good things out there for you.

    Sending you much positivity.
  11. Vette117

    Vette117 Member

    Thank you. I admit it is hard to hear, but I have also thought this myself. I have decided to move on. I do pray that she finds herself, and lives a good and healthy life. I realize I have done all that I can. I agree, that this may be something she has to break through on her own.

    At the end of the day, I can still say that I did the right thing, and gave it my best to help better her situation. I have learned a lot from the experience.

    I do hold hope that she finds her way, and maybe we can continue as friends in the future, but for now our paths are seperate.
  12. deanokat

    deanokat Community Organizer Community Listener

    @Vette117... I think you're probably doing the right thing. I've learned over the years that it's possible to do all the right things and still end up with a bad result. That's just how life works sometimes.

    I will pray for her, too. And I hope you find good things down the road.