Broke up with addict three months ago...struggling.

Old 05-29-2013, 12:17 PM
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Broke up with addict three months ago...struggling.

Hi all -- I just joined SR last night although I've been roaming around the site for the past few months. A little bit about me: I'm in my early 20s and live in NYC. I graduated from college last year and I'm working my dream job at a major media/entertainment company in the city. From an outsider's perspective, my life looks pretty good.

However, I'm currently going through a depression related to the breakup with my ex-boyfriend of a year and a half. I met him in college; his roommate was dating my roommate. Everything was going great at first. He was fun, sweet, attentive and made me laugh. We really just connected and had a great time together. I knew he used drugs occassionally, but honestly I didn't think much of it. After all, we were in college...a lot of kids used drugs recreationally. Looking back, I can now see all of the signs pointed to the fact that he was not just a recreational user -- he was an addict all along. He was constantly disappearing or wouldn't answer calls/texts for hours at a time, he was always out of money even though he had a part-time job after classes and some of his friends were definitely sketchy. I ignored the signs at the time.

Six months into our relationship, he flew home to the West Coast to visit family. I got a call the next day where he blindsided me letting me know that his family staged an intervention for his drug addiction and that he was going to rehab the next day. I was in absolute SHOCK. I had absolutely no idea he was an addict and I felt so incredibly betrayed. It seemed as if my world came crashing down in the matter of a ten minute phone call.

He went to rehab for a month and we agreed to break up. My parents and friends were also blindsided by his addiction revelation and they insisted we break up. They constantly told me I deserved better. However, I missed him like crazy and slowly but surely, we started texting/calling/Skyping after he left rehab. I visited him on the West Coast that summer and then he visited me in NYC several times. Our long-distance relationship lasted for just about a year. I truly believed he hadn't used drugs since rehab and that he was almost at the point where he could move to NYC with me, get a job (he has a degree in Chemical Engineering) and finally be able to have a normal relationship with me. I had so much faith in him.

Cut to three months ago, he moved back to the East Coast with relatives and was going on job interviews in the city and doing well. We were finally on the same coast again and seeing each other on a regular basis -- I was so happy. After a great weekend visit together, I got a call from his relatives letting me know that he had been using every week since rehab (which was a year ago) and that he had stolen so much money from his family that they were deciding between turning him into the police or kicking him out of the house, leaving him homeless. Blindsided once again. Betrayed once again. I couldn't believe I was naive enough to think he never used drugs post-rehab. His family told me that our relationship had to end and that was it -- our year and a half relationship was over.

It's been three months since then but I am in a deep depression because I still love him. I don't want to love him anymore. At times I feel such hatred and anger towards him -- I can't believe how he destroyed my heart. I know I deserve better, I know that deep down. But unfortunately my heart hasn't caught up with my head yet. If you had told me a few years ago that I would have had a boyfriend who was a drug addict, I would have told you that you were crazy. But this is my life now I guess. I found out from his family that he's living at a homeless shelter and bagging groceries at the local store. It is heartbreaking for me to think of his life right now. He has SO much potential! After all, he was an athlete in high school, joined a great fraternity in college, had a ton of good friends and has a degree in Chemical Engineering from a competitive school. We could have been so happy together but now I have to accept the fact that we can never be together again. I'm sad and need help.

Thanks all for reading, I know it was long. Glad to finally be a member of this great group of people
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Old 05-29-2013, 01:06 PM
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Hi, and welcome to SR.

Sorry you are in such pain. If it makes you feel any better, addiction is something nobody asks for--my bet is that he didn't set out to lie to you and his family, to steal from them and break your heart. But that is what addiction does to people. As much pain as you're in now, you would be in a lot more pain if you were still in a relationship with him.

On the positive side for him, living in a shelter and bagging groceries may be just what he needs for right now. Most alcoholics and addicts have to suffer quite a bit as a result of their addictions to get to the point where they are ready to quit.

What do YOU need and want out of life? The more energy you put into living your life, the less you will have to spend on regrets for the past.
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Old 05-29-2013, 01:45 PM
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Dear MJ2516, the pain of a breakup is intense--but, fades away; the pain of living with addiction goes on and on and becomes progressively worse.

This might be a good time to engage a therapist as a gift to yourself. It could only help.

You have every reason to believe that there is a happy future waiting for you.

sincerely,
dandylion
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Old 05-29-2013, 02:42 PM
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Originally Posted by dandylion View Post
Dear MJ2516, the pain of a breakup is intense--but, fades away; the pain of living with addiction goes on and on and becomes progressively worse.

This might be a good time to engage a therapist as a gift to yourself. It could only help.

You have every reason to believe that there is a happy future waiting for you.

sincerely,
dandylion
What dandylion said .
Counseling for you sounds like and excellent idea.
You are young, keep moving forward without this guy, he is trouble.
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Old 05-29-2013, 09:39 PM
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MJ, you are so young! Well I am 31 already. I lived something similar, I also had this idea about my ex boyfriend, and "we could have had it all...". Anyway, he turned out to be an alcoholic. We broke up in 2008 and I was in so much pain. This is not easy. But you are definitely becoming stronger and wiser.

2013 - I have lived many great adventures and feel happier way more often than before, I learned my happiness depends on me, independent of whatever anyone else thinks, says or does. This is a HUGE gift life has given me. A huge lesson I am now grateful for.

Sadly, I learned from someone that my ex is still drinking and is even worse than before. Which I cannot imagine. What would have happened had I stayed? 5 more years of misery.

There ARE great people out there, great men, who would never ever dream of hurting themselves and hurting others like that. I recommend counseling. It did me a ton of good.

Congratulations for being so successful in your profession!
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Old 05-30-2013, 12:05 AM
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"he's bagging groceries and living at a homeless shelter"

This will be a hook for you. This will keep you in delusion about him because the naive part of your nature, the codependent sensitive part of your nature, will think about that picture as if he were a poor homeless dog and not a calculating, full-on, selfish drug-seeking addict.

One of the important things I had to do regarding drug addicts was wise up to their real lives, not the one I made up in my head.

So I read some drug addict memoirs and suggest you do this, too, so that you can wipe away in your mind your vision of him as a lost, innocent young man who is hurting.

Nic Scheff's "Tweaked" is an eye-opener. I'd suggest that one for starters. He was a golden boy, in his family's eyes. But he was not at all who they thought he was. His father, David, wrote a book about the addiction taking over his son. It is amazing how his father continued to hold him on pedestal and think "surely not Nic" and all the while, Nic is living a life that is the lowest of the lows. And he doesn't much care. He loves drugs.

If your former partner was high all the times he was with you, then you had a relationship with an illusion. No one is himself when high. On stimulants he's powerful and erotic. On opiates he's warm and fuzzy. But he is never real. And everything is a lie.

You have been conned. It will be so important that you not make up a story about him based on your illusion about who you thought he was. If you see him for who he really is, then it will be easier to stay away. Because my guess is he will be getting in touch with you real soon. And he's going to throw you some powerful bait on the end of that hook.
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Old 05-30-2013, 09:44 PM
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How are you doing MJ? I was remembering you today. Sending virtual ((HUGS))
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Old 05-30-2013, 09:46 PM
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Addiction, Lies and Relationships
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Old 05-31-2013, 05:03 PM
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Thank you so much for the honest advice and kind words. My friends and family don't really understand what I'm going through so it's comforting to know there's an outlet like this where other people can relate to my situation and offer such great support.

EnglishGarden -- you are absolutely right that I think of him as "a lost, innocent young man who is hurting". Your response really made me stop and think. I never thought that pitying him was part of the reason that I can't seem to get over him. I guess I have trouble making sense of the fact that the same sweet guy I fell in love is also a manipulative, hurtful and self-absorbed addict. But then again you're probably also right that the sweet guy I thought I fell in love with was an illusion and not based in reality.

And TakingCharge, thank you for the great reading! And virtual hugs

Whenever my ex-boyfriend would talk about the AA concept of taking it one day at a time, I would always get frustrated. I am such a planner that I can't help but try and look ahead. But in getting over this relationship, I've learned it really is best to take it one day at a time. Some days are harder than others but it's been a good day today!
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