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How can you throw away years of sobriety

Discussion in 'Helping an Addicted Loved One' started by TripleD123, Apr 20, 2015.

  1. TripleD123

    TripleD123 Community Champion

    My husband has been clean of his meth addiction for 4 years. He was heavily into the drug from working in the construction industry. A few months ago when he happened to be out and about one afternoon alone he supposedly "bumped into" and old friend who offered him some "ice" for old times sake. I don't know how much I believe that story because if I know anything I know tweakers just aren't running around town offering up free drugs to buddies but that's another thread for another time...ANYWAYS... long story short after being clean for 4 years my husband used again. I knew the moment I spoke with him on the phone the old addict was back. Before I even saw him I could hear in his voice that he was high.

    I almost left him that night. It was right before Christmas and I was going to kick him out. For the kids sake I chose to save face and brave the holidays. I couldn't BELIEVE or UNDERSTAND how someone would just throw it all away so easily. Our life before he used was fine, stress free, beautiful. He had no pivotal moment that made him run to find the drug. No life altering situation. We were celebrating the holiday and life was grand. Why would someone throw away a beautiful life for such a sick, destructive, drug?

    I still don't understand it, and he hasn't used since...but I am apt to believe if he would relapse once for no reason he will relapse again. Obviously we are still together and I didn't follow through with my plans of divorce. I just don't know what I am supposed to do as a spouse. He was doing so well and was willing to throw it away so quickly...
  2. aimeep80

    aimeep80 Senior Contributor

    I am so sorry to hear that your husband relapsed. Granted he says it was once but do you know that for sure? My answer would be no because I am also the wife of an addict/alcoholic. My husband was clean and sober for nearly 4 years before he relapsed on alcohol. He thankfully doesn't drink everyday as he did before, and limits himself to weekends or anytime that he doesn't have to work the next day, but still, it is every single weekend and/or time he is off of work.

    I know it is hard, and I know it is heartbreaking to say the least. You and I can not understand it because we are not addicts. It is something that they have to deal with on a daily basis, regardless of if they are clean and sober and regardless of how many years of sobriety that they have. I have heard of people being sober for 20 or even 30 years that relapse. I wish there were a way to prevent that but unfortunately there isn't.

    I don't understand how anyone could throw sobriety away either, but from things I've read, that feeling of wanting to use never really leaves and addict and constant attendance to AA meetings or NA meetings is needed. My husband did not attend but one meeting when he got out of rehab. I am not saying that by him not going is what caused his relapse, but I also know that support from others who are going through the same exact thing is very beneficial to the addicted.

    As hard as it is, I hope that you focus on your well being and not his addiction. It is very hard to do, trust me, I know. I have cried, begged, pleaded, and threatened to leave too many times to count. In the long run, that just uses more energy to do and doesn't solve anything. An addict is sick and they can not think like we do. They can not focus on anything when they are using, except that drug. It is not that they do not love us it's just that they can't focus. I'm not sure if you've tried to attend Al Anon meetings or not, but I think it would help if you could go. I personally can not attend them because I can not drive and my anxiety issues pretty much keep me at home.
    I hope that you take care of yourself and stay focused on your wellness. Best wishes to you and to your husband as well!!
    TripleD123 likes this.
  3. amin021023

    amin021023 Community Champion

    That's a though one. I could say he won't relapse again and don't worry blah blah but consider the fact that meth is a very strong drug perhaps the most addictive as well and 4 years of sobriety isn't something to ignore. your husband is a strong man but he still needs help, try to be more kind and supportive with him and prevent him from relapsing again.I wish all the best for you two.
  4. TripleD123

    TripleD123 Community Champion

    I do think I will look into attending meetings. I just always thought they were only for the addicts, not the ones affected by the addicts?
    aimeep80 likes this.
  5. TripleD123

    TripleD123 Community Champion

    I was so nice and supportive for so many years that it turned into me actually being an enabler because I was trying to be so nice and supportive. Unfortunately the tough act is the only thing that works for me anymore. Our marriage survived his addiction this time, but it has honestly hardened my heart. I am pretty open minded about the whole thing and I am very realistic about my expectations. So much more than I used to be. I understand he has a sickness and that I can't be given a for sure answer to our future.

    The problem with being someone who loves an addict is down the road somewhere your heart turns to ice without you even knowing it.
  6. aimeep80

    aimeep80 Senior Contributor

    I think they will be very helpful for you. There are some meetings strictly for addicts but there are also ones for family members as well. I hope you find one that you can attend. Best wishes to you and to your husband.
  7. TripleD123

    TripleD123 Community Champion

    Thank you for the support. It doesn't go unnoticed.

    I will look into meetings. I promise.
  8. Tremmie

    Tremmie Community Champion

    So sorry to hear your husband started using again. Sadly this kind of things do happen, not always but most of the times there are relapses. I know because I had several, but I've been sober for years. I had my relapses during moments of a lot stress or right after some really difficult incidents in my life. It was my way to scape and numb the pain.

    Has your husband been under a lot stress lately? Did something happen? It is a bit odd he relapsed after 4 full years and yes, you are totally right for not believing the friend story. But I really think something is going on in his life, something must have happened and he reacted to the stress/worry/anger/etc. He will need a lot help this time around too.
  9. DancingLady

    DancingLady Community Champion

    Unfortunately the pull of addiction can be very strong even years later. There may be something he "enjoys" about using that has drawn him back. You may not be aware of everything going on in his head, if something is bothering him or stressful. There are many contributing factors, but don't give up.
  10. KNH

    KNH Active Contributor

    Addiction seems to be a disease that needs to continuously be controlled. I don't know why he would have relapsed after so long, but I have never had a meth addiction so I don't understand. I think meetings and/or therapy could help you. Take care of yourself so you can help him.
  11. amethyst

    amethyst Community Champion

    It sounds to me like he did it so see whether he can, not because he had an urgent need for it, but rather to see what effect it would have on him after 4 years of sobriety. Obviously, it is a little presumptive of me to say this, but I feel that your husband won't be slipping back into his old habit again. From what you are describing here, it sounds very much like he just had to "prove" something to himself. It was like a challenge. I did a similar thing myself once. After being alcohol-free for nearly 7 years, I suddenly wanted to see what it felt like going to a bar and having a drink. I went out and had two vodkas, after which I felt very drunk and disappointed with myself. I never touched alcohol again.
    I feel that it will help your husband and your entire family a lot if you can have trust in him again. Threats never help.
  12. dmathon

    dmathon Member

    Your husband seems incredibly strong 4 years is a great accomplishment. Maybe he felt vulnerable, as if running into that "old friend" made him feel the way he did when he first started the drug. Sometimes who we are around impact our decisions tremendously, if you were there with him do you think he still would have accepted? Maybe you can attend a meeting for emotional support for yourself as this is a very difficult situation. From someone who's gone through something similar, support your husband and ask him if he would like to attend a meeting as well. I found that not singling them out but encouraging as a "we" and not a "you" really helps them feel comforted and understood.
  13. karmaskeeper

    karmaskeeper Community Champion

    Some old friend he turned out to be. With friends like that who needs enemies. I just believe misery loves company, and this so called friend wanted company. I really hate that for your husband I'm sure he has beaten himself up for being weak at that moment.