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Manipulation, Lies and Recovery.

Discussion in 'Prescription Drugs' started by JC721, Nov 29, 2016.

  1. JC721

    JC721 Member

    Living with an addict is hard to do. My husband is a recovering addict and alcoholic. His drug of choice is opiates (Percocets). He has had some slips in the passed 4 years since we have been together. He has been to rehab twice both times in which he went away for a month at a time while I was pregnant( 2 different pregnancies). I've felt abandoned and alone. I've felt a sense of resentment and anger which I don't know will ever go away. My husband as far as I know has now been sober for the passed 11 months. He has struggled at times and his anxiety has been a problem so he is now currently taking antidepressants along with suboxone and clonopin. Im afraid of him abusing these medications and of course he has come short on his clonopin a few times before refill because he was taking a little more than prescribed some days and as well as the suboxone. I've confronted him about the amount he takes in one day (I counted the pills in the morning and again at night) and he lied about the amount he was taking after I asked him. I don't understand why he lies to me. He tells me it's old habits and he knows he shouldn't lie but he just does. Red flag? Can this be sign of relapse? He tells me he's on the right track. He has a sponsor and he goes to meetings but he has done all that before and just to find out he was using again. Can this time be different? I don't know, I'm not him. He's a master manipulator and he's not easy to detect. I actually had to use an app called "mustache" which disguises my cell as a different number and i portrayed a drug dealer just to get some answers. Yes, it was very clever on my part to finally get the truth that he was looking for drugs and then came out he was using but do I have to take it to these measures? No. It's exhausting! Point is, I constantly worry if my husband is on the right track in his recovery. He says he is and after coming back from rehab the last time he's in a new state of mind. He does seem to be doing well but I can't help myself based on our history that he could still be hiding things very well or lying to me about other things if he's already lying about how many clonopin he's taking. I can't help but to question him constantly. We have two young kids. One is 2 1/2 and the other 7 months old. I just want the best for us and I don't want this to consume me or the family. I constantly worry and I know I can't control him but I don't know how to understand him and I'm paranoid about him lying. My biggest fear is him using again. Please share your thoughts. How can I be supportive in his recovery if I'm suspicious and I have no solid trust?
  2. deanokat

    deanokat DrugAbuse.com Community Organizer Community Listener

    @JC721... Welcome to the community and thanks for sharing with us. I'm glad you reached out to us.

    You're right: You can't control your husband. As Nar-Anon and Al-Anon teach, you didn't cause it, you can't control it, and you can't cure it. But Lord knows you can drive yourself crazy trying, right? My wife and I spent a lot of years trying to control/fix our son's addiction. We finally came to the conclusion that we couldn't want it more than he did and we detached with love. Detaching doesn't mean you stop loving, caring, and supporting; it just means that you learn to do those things without making yourself nuts.

    People who struggle with addiction are indeed master manipulators and, at times, liars. But you will make yourself crazy if you keep second guessing everything your husband does or says. Mark Twain once said, "The best way to find out if you can trust somebody is to trust them." It sounds so simple, but it's true. Just go with the flow and see where it takes you. If your husband does lie to you, though, then you will likely have to make some tough decisions. The one thing you should remember is this: You and your children are the most important people in your life. The three of you deserve to live a happy, healthy life without the drama, stress, and uncertainty that addiction can bring.

    For now, be glad that your husband is sober. As long as he's taking the Suboxone and Klonopin as prescribed, you shouldn't have much to worry about. But both of those medications can be abused, so just be aware of that.

    I would also suggest that you seek out a Nar-Anon or Al-Anon meeting in your area and attend it. Being around others who know exactly what you're feeling and going through can be very helpful and comforting.

    We are here to help and support you however we can. You can come here anytime and ask for advice or just vent. You are not alone and you are safe here. In the meantime, I'm sending you positive vibes and big hugs full of hope. I will also keep your husband in my thoughts and prayers, and hope that he can stay on the right path long-term.

    Love and light to you.
  3. JC721

    JC721 Member

    Thank you so much for your reply. I appreciate the advice and guidance. Like you said I can only hope my husband takes the medication as prescribed but if he doesn't and this continues or he starts taking illegal drugs again, I will have to figure out what to do next. I think another big fear of mine is ignoring my crazy thoughts in my head and letting him carry on and hope he's doing the right thing because what if he's not? What if I go to work one day and leave him to be with the kids and everything seems fine and dandy with him and then without any warning he's doing drugs or worse overdoses with our little kids in the house. This stuff freaks me out. My mind runs wild. They are still too young to know any better or call for help if something happened. They would be alone. I've been told nar anon and al anon can help and I guess I was discouraged after going to one meeting because it didn't feel like something that was for me. I didn't connect with the people there and I guess maybe I should try again but I was turned off by my first meeting.
  4. deanokat

    deanokat DrugAbuse.com Community Organizer Community Listener

    You're very welcome, @JC721. And your concerns about leaving your kids with your husband are not crazy thoughts. That's a serious thing that you have to consider, at least until he shows you that he's truly changed. Part of loving someone who struggles with addiction is running through countless scenarios and possibilities in your head. Sure, it's easy to say "Don't think about that stuff." But we're human beings, right? And when it's someone we care about, it's only natural to worry. One thing I do tell myself quite often is something I read a couple of years ago. It's a really simple statement, but it's sooooo true: "Worrying doesn't actually DO anything."

    As far as the meetings go, my wife and I have always preferred Al-Anon over Nar-Anon. For some reason we found the Nar-Anon meetings to be more depressing. Thankfully, Al-Anon welcomed us even though our son's drug of choice was heroin, not alcohol. Also, finding a meeting that is a good fit for you is a bit like trying to find a boyfriend/spouse that works for you. If you go to a meeting and things don't click, try another meeting. It can take a few different meetings before you find one you feel comfortable with.

    Hang in there, my friend. And know that you can reach out anytime.

    Big hugs to you.
  5. JC721

    JC721 Member

    Thanks again. I will try to go to another meeting. I guess I didn't think about it in that way. Hopefully I will find one that's right for me. I'm sure there are others out there that have similar thoughts as I do, it's really hard to overcome them. Yes, I also have heard that Al anon is better than Nar Anon. I appreciate the support.
    deanokat likes this.
  6. Cheyrose22

    Cheyrose22 Member

    Im unfortunatly going through this nightmare right now with my fiancé. He has been addicted to opiates for 10 yearsm hes in detox now and will be in a rehab after. This is all new to us and very difficult. My biggest fear is after all this him secretly going bad to drugs. Its hard but i love him and ak trying my hardest to support him through this.
  7. deanokat

    deanokat DrugAbuse.com Community Organizer Community Listener

    @Cheyrose22... I'm sorry to hear about your fiancé's struggle. I recommend you check out a book called Beyond Addiction: How Science and Kindness Help People Change. It's written specifically for partners/parents/loved ones of those struggling with addiction and it's full of tremendously helpful information. It's a book I wish I would've had when my son's addiction first surfaced. I really think it will help you.

    Keeping good thoughts for you and your fiancé. And sending you lots of hugs full of hope.
  8. Cheyrose22

    Cheyrose22 Member

    Thank you ill look into finding it.
    Him being gone is the easy part its the thought of him secretly going back to drugs after all of this. He was really bad. He was lending out his car to this random guy for drugs
  9. deanokat

    deanokat DrugAbuse.com Community Organizer Community Listener

    @Cheyrose22... You have to live by the words Al-Anon and Nar-Anon teach: You didn't cause it, you can't control it, and you can't cure it. And you have to take good care of yourself, because you have to be at your best physically and (especially) mentally in order to deal with your fiancé's issues. Just remember: You can't fix him; you can only support him if he is willing to fix himself.

    Big hugs.
  10. JC721

    JC721 Member

    @Cheyrose22 Im sorry you are going through this. It's a tough battle. So far I've been dealing with it the passed 3 years. There has been a few good months but then it has been a cycle. My husband has been in rehab twice. After the second time in rehab he had a good few months then said he was having cravings and thought it would be best to be on suboxone which I supported. He also had a lot of anxiety and anger and some depression so he went on klonopin and some other meds. The klonopin is a benzo which is addicting. Needless to say after a few months now he's been taking more suboxone then prescribed and as well as the klonopin. It's so frustrating to me and he tells me he has it "under control" we got into an argument last week and he ran off and drove down to Atlantic city, blew 1000 dollars and drank. He **** on his one year of sobriety. I'm broken inside. I'm at the point where I think I should just pick up and leave. It's just so difficult. We have two young boys. I'm at a loss
  11. deanokat

    deanokat DrugAbuse.com Community Organizer Community Listener

    @JC721... I'm sorry to hear about your husband's struggles. I wish I had a magic wand to send to you and all the others who have loved ones battling addiction. Unfortunately, I don't.

    Your husband is the only one who can decide to end his cycle of addiction. The hardest thing about loving someone with a substance abuse problem is the helplessness we feel. It doesn't matter how much we want them to change; they have to want it, too.

    You may want to look into that book I recommended to @Cheyrose22. It's a wonderful book and I think it would be really helpful for you.

    Remember: Your life and the lives of your children matter, too. The three of you have a right to live a happy, healthy life. If that means taking some drastic steps, then maybe that's something you have to consider.

    You are not alone, my friend. We're here to offer support and listen.

    Big hugs coming your way.
  12. deanokat

    deanokat DrugAbuse.com Community Organizer Community Listener

    @Cheyrose22... How are things going, my friend? If you have a chance, check in with us and let us know. We care.
  13. Hunter1217

    Hunter1217 Member

    Hey @JC721 I know this is about a year old so i don’t expect a response but if you do see this, i would love to know how you are and how things have been. I’m in the heart of exactly what you described and I’m having the same struggles as you were having. I’m petrified of being lied to over and over again and I’m unable to sit back and watch my husband “get away” with what i know is him manipulating situations or telling me bits and parts of his treatment; just the right amount to what he thinks convince me that he’s on track and wanting to change. We have been married for a year, together for 4 and we drink a lot. My family drinks and my friends drink and while i knew my husband took it to another level drinking during the day while at work or going to a bar for a work meeting during the day and lying about it, it has fully revealed itself the last couple of months. We’ve been trying to have a baby and I have cut way way back on drinking since May. Bc he was supposed to not drink with me, it revealed that there was a whole secret drinking issue going on even when we were both openly drinking. In September i caught him drinking at home bc when i asked him what he was drinking he lied to my face and said tea. I then picked it up, too quickly for him to see coming and it was vodka. The whole “i have a problem and i can’t stop” sob story came out which was manipulated to make me feel sorry for him. He said he drinks a bottle a day and keeps it under the bed so on days when we’re home, he just goes to the bathroom and pours more in whatever cup he’s drinking his “water” out of. I was shocked, not at what he was doing but that he was doing it right in front of my face AND that i didn’t even catch on despite my lack of trust for him even at the time. A week went by and he was trying to not drink at all and we were about to go bowling, trying to do something together that didn’t involve drinking or wallowing at Home fighting about the drinking. We were about to leave and i went to the bathroom and saw cocaine residue on the sink. i had caught him w coke a few years ago and we broke up for a few months bc he started partying with young coworkers and couldn’t seem to get his $hit together. He’s 38 and has a great job and loves pleasing peoole and loves having fun and also loves being whoever people want him to be. I was completely oblivious to the fact that he had a continual drug issue and had been on and off on a coke bender for years. He was doing a gram a day for months at a time apparently. It explains the difficulty getting pregnant. Now he’s been in treatment (outpatient) for 5 weeks and he’s relapsed twice. Last week he found an old hidden bag of coke in his closet and picked a fight with me which is basically just him getting frustrated and angry w me for being upset with him about anything- to his advantage he doesn’t have to create the actual fight- he just uses me to manipulate me to show emotion of some or any kind and he reacts to it in a way that worsens it for me which ultimately gives him his opportunity to leave or have me leave and then he gets to use or drink. This week he had a late work meeting which he actually went to a bar beforehand and afterwards all while creating conflict w me via text and getting caught in a web of lies. His parents and sister and husband are involved now bc when initially caught, he didn’t want me to be alone in this and he wanted to be held accountable. Now he regrets that as more hands on deck and his brother in law actually called me yesterday to tell me he talked to my husband and he sounded really drunk. Sure enough due to stories crossing paths and more of us talking to each other, he finally admitted today that he drank and fell off the wagon again. Keep in mind that to my face last night, stumbling and slurring, he wouldn’t admit it. Now back to square one and feeling more manipulated and betrayed, he’s making promises and feeling sorry for himself and feeling bad for what he has done. My problem is that i don’t think he actually feels bad. I think he feels bad that he got caught and is mad at himself for not being smarter about it. I need help in this. I’m so angry and I’m so lost and broken. I know i need to focus on me and be aware of the codependency issues going on, but when I try to do that, he is just onto me and manipulates things more, smothers me w I’m sorrys, gets his feelings hurt when I’m cold or distant and eventually will use that to enable him to do this again. I told him he needed to go to inpatient but he won’t. He’s in group therapy 3 days a week but clearly it’s not working or it doesn’t appear to be. What Can I do to protect myself each day? I have to work and i have to live my life which right now doesn’t seem to entail anything beyond his addiction. Do i act like i believe his words and focus on not letting it consume me or do i hold him accountable and make him prove he’s being honest all of the time. Im sorry for this rant that may be sent to cyberspace since the thread is so old. If anyone is listening though, i could really use some direction.
    deanokat likes this.
  14. JC721

    JC721 Member

    Hi @Hunter1217 , I'm so glad you are reaching out. Yes, it's been a while since I've been on the site but I got notification that you sent a message and I would love to give you some advice. I just read my post from a year ago and I'm happy to say that I'm no longer in a co dependent relationship. My husband and I are currently in the middle of the divorce process. Back in January 2017 he went off the deep end, he was drinking and drugging and not coming home, when he did come home we were fighting in front of the kids and it just wasn't a good situation. I went to the point of putting recorders in my house to see what was going on while I was at work. He was watching our kids and while they were napping he was snorting his prescription klonopins in the basement. Very unsettling to say the least especially with kids involved. He went to inpatient rehab once again (3rd time) and he was gone for 3 months. I already made up my mind at that point that I needed to leave him. One thing I realized is that no matter what you do you can not change a person they have to be willing to change themselves. It's very hard when you are constantly being lied to, I totally get it. They will tell you they are on the right path and doing something else. My husband is a very good manipulator like most alcoholics and addicts, it's just what they do. That's why it took me acting like a detective and bugging my house to see what the heck was going on. That's no way to live. I realized I should be focusing more on me and my life and my children then worrying about what he was doing. I realized then I needed to get out. It was a very VERY hard decision, especially because I have two young boys with him (18 mos and 3 1/2 years now) you would think after all this time he would figure it out and do right by his family but he hasn't. He's always been week minded and I'm hoping for his sake he will figure it out one day. Even when he came home from rehab this 3rd time he begged me for another chance to make things right but my mind was already made up. As we are going through the divorce process I asked the court to order a hair follicle test and it came back positive for cocaine, it tested back 90 days which was after the rehab stay so it should have been clean and it wasn't, so here we go again. Only this time, I'm out of the situation. I'm currently living with a family member with my two kids and I'm very happy. I'm fighting for him to get supervised visits when he does see my kids and random drug testing as well. I know I made the right decision. Life is scary and you may think you are stuck but you are not. As for your husband, sounds like the same scenerio, they are all the same. Do not beat yourself up for not being aware of how he's manipulated you or done things right in front of your face. This is his problem that he needs to take care of, not yours. It's hard to wrap your head around that but it's true. Be grateful that you don't have children involved because it makes it that much harder. You need to do what's best for you. You can't worry about him. Sounds to me he needs to go to an inpatient rehab program but you can not force that either. This unfortunately is not something you have control of. You have control of yourself and your life though and sometimes you have to make tough decisions. Im sure you are like me, I'm sure you are sitting there hoping to get an answer on how to make it all better and live a happy life. Unfortunatley, if your husband isn't admitting to his problem and still lies to you and doesn't get proper help it's going to be a long dark road. If you have any other questions I'm happy to listen and help out however I can. Good luck! Hugs!
    deanokat likes this.
  15. deanokat

    deanokat DrugAbuse.com Community Organizer Community Listener

    @Hunter1217... Welcome to the community and thanks for sharing your story with us. I'm sorry you're going through what you are with your husband.

    I think @JC721 has given you some excellent insight. It's always good to hear from someone who has experience in a similar situation. My advice would be this: Concentrate on taking good care of yourself. Because your life matters, too. When you focus all your energy on a loved one's addiction, you run the risk of becoming addicted to their addiction; and if that happens, you will both suffer immensely.

    Al-Anon and Nar-Anon teach us this about a loved one's addiction: You didn't cause it, you can't control it, and you can't cure it. Your husband is the only person who can take the steps necessary to change his life. It doesn't matter how much you want him to change. That's the cruel reality.

    I would suggest you look for a Nar-Anon or Al-Anon meeting in your area and check it out. It can be super helpful and comforting to be among others who know exactly what you're going through and feeling. I also think doing some reading on addiction, codependency, etc. would be good for you. Education is power. Here's a link to a blog I wrote about some of my favorite books on those subjects:

    6 Essential Books for Those with an Addicted Loved One

    I will keep you and your husband in my thoughts and prayers. I'm also sending you lots of love, light, and hope. I know what you're going through isn't easy. In fact, it's probably one of the most difficult things you'll ever go through. Just remember: YOU should always be at the very top of your priority list.
  16. Hunter1217

    Hunter1217 Member

    Hi, @deanokat and @JC721. It was so nice to hear from you both. After I wrote that LOOOONG post, I thought it was a long shot that I would hear back since it was so old. @deanokat I bought the book Beyond Addiction: How science and Kindness Help People Change and I am so thankful for your sharing it. Right when I started (I'm still only 2 chapters in) my mentality shifted and I realized that you are right in that only he can do this and what my role is. I have been to al-anon and I "know" this and how it works and how focusing on me is the only way to get through this. But, the whole detach with love, while i feel detached and not very loving right now, seemed to help validate my anger but also left me feeling stuck as to what and how to actually be towards him and what my goal was. We've been fighting which is to be expected and while i wish I could say that this book has transformed me, I am able to say that I know what I want to try and that's a great first step. My husband is very loving (when he isnt being a manipulative liar) and he's very dependent on my love. He gets his feelings hurt by me easily and he's anxious so while I think he deserves to know the pain he's inflicted and deal with the consequences of his actions, it only makes things worse for me and I get the exact reaction and actions from him that I am fearing. He can't handle how intense my anger is and I tend to be relentless which makes him shut down and then later be angry at me and I think it may enable the cycle to continue. So, my goal is to try this approach and i believe i will feel better, regardless of the outcome of his addiction and at the end of the day, doing this for myself and having it help him, helps me. So thank you!

    @JC721 thank you for sharing how things panned out. I am sure that wasn't easy and I really appreciate it. I am so sorry that things didn't work out. I think you're doing the right thing and I'm sure there are going to be tough times ahead as divorce isn't easy, especially with 2 little ones but it can't be worse than constantly worrying when the other shoe will drop. You should feel really proud of yourself for making the choices you did and it was refreshing to read you say that by the time he was out of rehab, you had made up your mind. You found the strength to say that regardless of what he did or was going to do, that you were doing this for you. I don't know you but I respect you a lot and you and your kids deserve more.

    Your story also made me very aware of the very possible realities and unfortunately our husbands sound similar in the way they treat us and how their addiction manifests itself. We sound similar in the ways that it has affected us. I have not been above playing detective, even though he's always made it very hard to do that due to his paranoia and extremes when it comes to hiding, denying etc. I want so badly to validate my suspicions and not let him get away with things, that it becomes consuming. I do know though, that if I don't change my approach, it will end up bad and quickly. If there is something that i can do to protect myself a bit and possibly create an environment where he is able to see the positives of changing and I can let go of the anger that is dictating my life right now, that I'm willing to try. When I am SO angry, I think his world caves in and he doesn't see any reasons worth getting better for so it's pretty self fulfilling and exhausting to be so pissed off ALL of the time. I had a work conference Thursday and I was recognized for being the top performer in the country. I am in healthcare and help families navigate senior living and deal with crisis situations for their older loved ones. My therapist made a correlation that my job and my marriage have similarities but I find joy in helping families during hard times. I don't find joy in trying to fix my husband or doing the hard parts for him. Anyway, there were 250 coworkers at this conference, most of who I don't interact with as we work remotely and we're a national company. To be recognized and have a room full of people looking at me as their mentor or my boss crying telling me that she is blessed to have me on her team was exactly what I needed. I needed to remember that there is life outside of my husbands problems and that i have self worth. It changed how I view myself and made me want to give myself a break. I am nervous for the holidays and the stressors/triggers that come with that, in addition to us having an IVF cycle the week of thanksgiving. It's a lot but if I take it day at a time, I feel confident that my resilience can get me through it. I am grateful for this thread. I won't continue writing lengthy ones. I feel like my mom when she texts me novels!

    I would love to hear everyone's stories and am always here for support.
    deanokat likes this.
  17. deanokat

    deanokat DrugAbuse.com Community Organizer Community Listener

    @Hunter1217... I'm glad to hear that you bought that book and I hope it helps you. Please know that you can reach out here anytime. You are not alone.