Need advice on dealing with a loved ones relapse

Old 10-10-2010, 10:24 PM
  # 1 (permalink)  
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Location: Seattle, WA
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Need advice on dealing with a loved ones relapse

Hello all,

My boyfriend, who had been recovered for 8 years, just told me that when he went on vacation about a month ago that he had a little relapse (smoked pot) with his brother and that when he came back home he had gotten more. Now he's become very sullen and depressed about the relapse and I'm not sure how to approach him or the situation. Im scared that if I dont do something or handle this correctly he might close himself off completely and get worse. Any advice would help. Thank you
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Starburst (10-10-2010)
Old 10-10-2010, 11:11 PM
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Morning and welcome to the SR family, this is a very hard one, my AH was also sober for 8 years then relapsed. Tell you the truth i never said anything to him, as i wasnt sure and he was doing it all secretly, but, i have learnt since being here, that we cant really do alot, except look after ourselves and be there for them, only they can deal with it. Please read all the stickies they are very useful. Remember the 3 c's.

You CAN"T control this
You didnt CAUSE this
You can't CURE this

others will be along shortly and im sure they will provide you with a wealth of good information. Keep reading and keep posting (((HUGS)))
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Old 10-11-2010, 12:20 AM
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Thanks for replying. I guess the situation feel so complicated and I just dont want to see him fall further. He's also bipolar which clearly doesn't help the situation. Fortunately he wasn't secretive about what happened. I guess I also dont know how to properly view the severity of the relapse. His addiction before was perscription meds and his slip up was with marijuana. Im just scared of the ripple effect.
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Old 10-11-2010, 05:03 AM
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Whenever my past BFs relapsed and then decided to "tell" me, I would get WAY too involved in it, looking for how to fix it or best support the person. Now, I know better and mind my own business. If someone "tells" me about their relapse, I refuse to be hooked in. I tell them, "well, better get some help for that" and turn around and walk away.
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Old 10-11-2010, 06:23 AM
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I know how you feel

It's funny how things are there, just whenever you feel most alone.....I had a really similar situation just this morning at 6 am....I was just about to have a pity party and thought I'd turn here, where I've gotten so much support for myself.

You certainly are not alone. It's hard to live with an addict and not get pulled into their 'world', but it's your boyfriends job to deal with his sobriety. That's what he can control. You are trying to heal your addiction to helping and addiction to the 'drama'---just like the rest of us here.

Something that I had to learn to distinguish is there are different 'kinds' of relapse, one is considered a 'healthy' relapse....this is where the addict feels remorse and shame. This is a critical time for me since I am a 'helper' (codeword for codependant) because I see my addict 'suffering'. In all reality, he's not suffering, he is experiencing a natural consequence to his behavior. Feeling bad is a deterrant and keeps us from doing things that feel bad. If I rescue my addict and do not let him experience feeling bad, then #1) I am robbing him of the experience of learning from his mistakes... 2) I am robbing myself of working on my own issues (not caretaking/rescuing).

I know for me, I really struggle with taking personally the deceit that goes along with living with an addict and their relapses. It's painful. But, it's normal and healthy for YOU to feel confused. It's normal and healthy for YOU. And that is what's in your control....YOU.

Be strong, take care of yourself, allow yourself the room to be upset and whatever else you need to feel as long as you need to.
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Old 10-11-2010, 06:29 AM
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Welcome to the SR family!

I'm sorry your bf has chosen to pick up after staying clean. You have every reason to be concerned. It is a red flag in your relationship. However, the only person you can control is yourself. You are in control of how you respond to this situation.

He is an adult and has to make his own choices. He knows how to get help from recovery groups and/or therapy when he is ready. He may try to make you his recovery buddy, but that is not your responsibility.

My AXH came to me when he was ready to get sober, I pulled up the 12 step meeting schedule on my computer and left him alone with the information. He chose recovery. He asked me to help him with his recovery. I had to tell him that I could not be his recovery buddy, or sponsor. He needed to get support from someone that would call him out on his BS.

We are here to support you as you deal with the feelings and events that surround a loved ones addiction. I also recommend looking into local Alanon or NarAnon meetings. The only requirement for attendance is a loved ones addiction, even if they are no longer using.

Please keep reading and posting and let us know how we can help you.
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