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October 6, 2004
1:12 pm
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chasingdavid
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I'm in a relationship and just recently discovered I'm a co-dependent. I am going to a meeting this week to begin to "fix" myself. I met him through happy hour friends 2yrs ago. We've been together 1.5yrs. I was 3yrs single when we got together and same with him, however he had been in prison for 2yrs. He is a meth user and was 3yrs sober when we got together. 7 months into it, he began using again. He claims to want help but something always comes up to hinder that (money, timing, etc). He hasn't had a job (felony on background prevents good jobs) this entire time and feels less manly. I can swallow that. I have paid for everything (rent, food, entertainment, utilities, etc). He'll leave me and go on 3-5 day binges, then call for a ride, come home, shower, eat everything, and sleep. Then the withdrawls come in. This is a cycle I've been living for awhile now. I know the person he is when sober. He just went 45 days sober 2 months ago, then got sucked back into the "life". I do not understand addiction at all and didn't realize that by me "being" there all this time I was enabling him to keep using. Now what? He is now living with his mother trying to stay busy and get help. How much time will he need? Will we ever get back to where we were? From his standpoint what is expected of me now? I do see a future for us- if we can get through our illnesses. Patience is not my best quality. Has anyone been through this and can it turn out good?

October 6, 2004
1:28 pm
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mj
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Hi...and Yes I have been through this and all I can share is....Look at how you have become part of the problem and then become part of the solution. I attend Al-Anon to focus on me. I have lots of work on me. I can only work on me. Good Luck.

October 6, 2004
1:33 pm
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lil
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Chasing-
Ooo- this sounds familar to me except for the drug part. I am also a codependent and a care taker and I am always trying to do everything for everyone else.
You ask "Now What?" Well, now you take care of yourself. Love yourself enough to see that you don't deserve this. You may not be able to help him. His behavior and problems are rubbing up against yours. This doesn't sounds healthy and you may need to realize that it won't work- ever. I know that is so hard to think about! For me, once I could accept that, everything else got easier (slowly) and more realistic. I was able to cry and grieve and feel the pain for what we had at one point and what I wanted to have back.
It is so hard! The only way to get through this is to go through it- there is no easy way around. You may need to look at yourself and your story of why you developed your own behaviors to caretake- sometimes you do that for a defense for protecting yourself and not wanting to face yourself.
I go to therapy once a week and at first, I was all "he, him, his" and it needed to change to "me, I, and mine." You will get there. It will get better. Reaching out is the first step. It has taken years for me and I am still hooked with someone but I am getting healthier for myself and I realized something yesterday- sometimes I need a little comfort in my broken places to be able to move forward...
I hope that helps, I'm new here too. I'll Check back with you and feel free to respond if you like.
lil

October 6, 2004
1:40 pm
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mamacinnamon
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Sounds somewhat familiar.

I met my hubby and we talked everything out before we married. I knew he had done time in jail for drugs. He said he was clean and had no problem. HE LIED! We have now been married 12 years and he has fallen off the wagon at least 5-6 times that I can think of. Major fall offs. Sometimes I think he's been using the whole time. What a joke I am to his family, or so I feel.

Can it work out? Depends on what you want to put up with in your married life.

Can you ever get back to where you were? No. You can have a new life together if he gets clean and stays clean.

From his standpoint what is expected of you now? Doesn't matter. You need to deal with you and your codependency. What he wants at this point doesn't matter.

Can it turn out good? I want so bad to say jump off the merri-go-round while you can. But, I do believe people can change if they truly want to. If he truly wants to clean up and you want to deal with your codependency then yes, it can turn out good.

I never had to deal w/ the no job, or the 3 day binges. Can't relate to that.

You two need to sit down and talk and you put forth what you will and won't put up with. He needs a 30 day detox program and you both need to get marriage counseling. I think that's important. If he can't do it then it's a deal breaker and you move on. But, remember, once an addict always an addict, just can be a clean addict. The tendency will always be there. And he can stay straight if he wants to.

I wish you both the best of luck and hope things will work out great for you. I am a strong believer in marriage, but sometimes they can't be saved.

October 6, 2004
1:42 pm
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wishes
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I wish I could say something wonderful like...yes, just stick it out and it'll all work out...and I hope it will for you....Anyway, it's good that you've got some separation while he's working on this.

The only way it will work is if HE wants to get help. Meth is a horrible horrible drug. Even then, its hard for them to give it up for more than a few months.

It didn't work between me and my ex. I hope it's different for you. Stay strong, work on your codep and first and foremost - take care of you. Let him deal with him. It's his problem and only he can solve it. Do not enable him. I know it's hard. Really hard. Good luck and keep coming here. It really helps.

October 6, 2004
2:10 pm
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CAMER
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HI Chasing, and welcome....well looks like you have your hands full on this one. He is addictive and its up to him to treat his addiction. By you paying for his things, letting him stay with you, giving him money, and taking care of him is "enabling" him. I was involved with an addictive alcoholic, who also went on big binges every 3 mos or so. And it was
a rollercoaster ride the whole time, never knowing if and when he would drink, & if and when he would go for help. Alot of his addiction, he needs to recognize, if he is not willing to
come sober, I would walk away. You don't deserve a life like this, if he can't take care of himself, who will??? Seek out coda meetings, and know and learn to love yourself more, and ask yourself is this what you really want. It is a long hard struggle with anyone with addictions, and alot easier if the person is willing to get help. Please keep venting here, and be sure to take care of you!
Camer

October 6, 2004
6:45 pm
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chasingdavid
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Thank you all for responding. The whole reality of my problem is overwelming. Can I keep posting here or do I really need to go to a meeting? I admit I am a little afraid. What to say- what not to say, what to expect. I've only seen meetings in movies or tv shows. I do still have to keep in touch with him, I bonded him out of jail and need to make sure my house isn't jeapordized. I don't have the funds at the moment to surrender or revoke it. He is doing good working with family and is going with them on a family trip (just spoke to him-he has court tomorrow-also part of the bond). I think it will do him good. I know-- there is my codep talking again...worrying about him. Isn't addiction a disease? If he had MS or Cancer I wouldn't shut him out. I'm so torn right now. I have to go against everything in me. My job requires me to get stuff done NOW. This also comes into play in my personal life. Please tell me it gets easier. I would hate to think I am going to constantly battle myself over every thought or decision. When I say "new to this" I mean it. I just had a coworker point out to me that I was classic codependent yesterday. I have never in my 30yrs put myself first. Whether it be lovers, family, or friends--they come/came first. My mind is in overdrive right now. So many questions, so many "what if's". Is this how everyone feels when they first learn they need help? Wow.

PS- I also have a chemical imbalance causing depression. I have that kinda under control. I am also a "cutter", no real suicide stuff though, just self torture when things get bad--not to alarm anyone, just more history. I'm a mess..

I know nobody can solve my issues, this is a great outlet and the feedback is appreciated..

October 6, 2004
7:02 pm
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sunray
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hi and welcome. i'm going thru a breakup now myself for simular reason mine is a gambler. camer is so rite. it's not healthy ,move on. the hardest thing to do . you have to take care of you. tough love. if by his losing you .makes him see the lite and he gets help . that would be wonderful but it's not likely life is short. you have to be happy . when i first came out here last week . i was hoping for different advice but they were straightup. i was out here for advice and i listened so far they have been right as they have gone though it . starting over is the worst . i know eventually i'll be a happy person because it's my nature and all of ours. keep posting you'll get a lot of support out here.gives you the strenght to do what you have too. soon you'll see things as clear as a bell.

October 7, 2004
3:19 pm
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lil
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chasing-
Putting yourself first is hard to get used to but you can do it and it will get easier.
I am going through that right now and not able to love myself. I'm going through the motions but not "feeling" it. I keep doing it though- making time for myself, reading, bubble baths, saying no to people that want things from me, and putting myself first. It feels weird but I am told it will catch on and one day I will want to do it for me, not just because my therapist is suggesting it and I can only believe that it will. Start taking care of yourself, even if it is uncomfortable or strange at first. One foot in front of the other...
Oh- and PLEASE stop cutting yourself. it has to stop and you have to be the one to stop it. You can do it.
Hang in there
lil

October 7, 2004
3:29 pm
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Cici
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i am a recovering addict. i believe it is a disease. i'll tell you the type of support that helped me most - and it wasn't the kind you give your bf.

my older sister was the best example, in my opinion, of how to give support to an addict. she listened to me, let me talk, and didn't judge me. BUT, she also NEVER gave me money, or a place to stay between binges. She did let me eat at her house a lot. she always let me know that she didn't approve of my choices. but she is wise enough to realize that i had to decide to change for myself. I lived out of my car and at various people's houses. my 2 cents.

that stuff about felons not being able to work is pure and utter bullsh*t. Sorry, it is. My husband's in federal prison right now, and I dated a guy who was in state prison for 7 years for armed robbery and kidnapping. He has had 4 jobs in the last 2 years. relatively menial work, construction, landscaping, that kind of thing...but he is earning money and has a grant and is going back to school to get his BA in landscape architecture. there are so many non-profit organizations to support a state or federal prisoner's transition into maistream society.

Places that have contracts with the state/government to take work release prisoners also often take felons and ex-cons. It's a matter of dedication and hard work.

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