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SOME ADVICE PLEASE - FALLING IN LOVE WITH A RECOVERING CROSS-ADDICT

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SOME ADVICE PLEASE - FALLING IN LOVE WITH A RECOVERING CROSS-ADDICT

Old 12-30-2001, 07:29 AM
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Molly
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SOME ADVICE PLEASE - FALLING IN LOVE WITH A RECOVERING CROSS-ADDICT

Hi Folks,

Hoping to get some answers here, and stories, advice, thoughts on the subject are much appreciated.

I met (completely by chance) a recovering cross-addict (alcohol/cocaine) about 6 weeks ago. He admitted himself to a hospital program, and has been in AA ever since October 1, 2001.

We have many similarities (exception, I have never been a user/drinker) We are very attracted to each other. He has a great family, and so do I. We have met each other's kids and important people in our lives. We have all the qualities that could lead to a phenomenal realtionship together. There are many signs around this meeting that it was God's will...too many to list (Examples: Both divorced since 1988, both have son's born in 1984, were raised similiarly, parents about the same age/socio-economic backgrounds...much more)

He states that he cannot get involved with anyone until he has been in recovery at least a year...though I know he would like to. I know I cannot help him, other than support on his journey...but to deny that love could be a powerful force in recovery, in a positive way...I wonder.

We have a agreed to be "friends", we see each other roughly once a week so far for coffee, a movie or meal, plutonic meetings. I do want to be his friend...but would like more eventually, when he is ready. But I also know...from years of experience and a deep emotional intelligence that he and I were meant to be together. Therefore, I am a little impatient I guess...wanting more but accepting "friends"

I have let him know my feelings...I know he has them too, but I also know this is one of the most difficult times in his life...and I am pretty positive that he is more scared than anything to follow his feelings regarding me.

Questions:
Has anyone "dated" a person in this stage of recovery (3 months) Tell me about it.

Where is he right now, mentally/emotionally at this stage of recovery? How can I help him?

Should I "wait" 9 months for him to be ready? He, of course would not ask me to do that. (I do feel compelled to do so)

Does AA or another group advise against getting "involved" during the first year of recovery...or is this advice from a counselor or friend? Please explain the concept to me.

This is truly an exceptional man...take away the things that surround him...I am not out of my mind for considering pursuing this...however I am concerned about the implications...the chances of relapse.

Any advise, ideas, personal experience. HELP!!

Thanks so much...God Bless...Molly


 
Old 12-30-2001, 08:05 AM
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I have often heard, from longtime theatre veterans, when a young person asks them if they should pursue the career , "If you can be happy doing anything else, do that."
Yes, AA encourages recoverees to wait at least a year before starting a new relationship. As to whether you "wait" for him, you can only do what your heart tells you to. My situation is different than yours. It was a relationship of long standing before the drug crisis. Knowing what I know now, I think I would run like crazy if I found myself falling for someone that was using narcotics OR recovering.
Help him by not helping him. He has AA friends to do that, who really understand the problem and the process. Give him (and yourself) plenty of room. If you think you might go ahead with this... check into an alanon meeting. Get some literature. You can learn to stay out of some the traps beforehand.
Enjoy your coffee.

WELCOME to the recovery forum!
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Old 12-30-2001, 10:25 AM
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I am with you there, Smoke. Just was thinking that the other day. If I were to meet someone today and had been through what I am going through and knew what I know now, I would definately not get involved. But we all have to make our own choices.
 
Old 12-30-2001, 12:51 PM
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Molly, my ex was an addict (cocaine) when I met him and I didn't find out about it until it was too late. I was only 17 - young and stupid. I thought I could save him. He only did it on weekends which also happened to be when I saw him. I was always miserable, but I stayed because that's what I'm used to (both my parents and all of their friends). Three years and A LOT of fights and tears later he started doing it at work and decided on HIS OWN to tell his mom and go to rehab. I went to all the family meetings and visited as much as I could. I broke up with him (for different reasons) and I got blamed for his relapse. All of his friends do drugs so it was only a matter of time. I see him out now and he's still the same.
My ex wasn't in recovery when I met him. If he does relapse it WILL be one the hardest things (if not THE hardest) you will ever go through. I think it depends on the (addicted) person - how determined is he? Even the most dedicated, strong willed, determined person can still relapse. And I may just be a young stupid girl, but all of those similarites do not mean that you were destined to be (sorry, don't mean to sound, um, bitter or pesimistic). I think, honestly, that you should get to know him better before you decide to make a life changing decision such as getting involved with someone who could potentially ruin life and your children's lives. I'm not sure how old they are, but it is not a nice thing to see your parent go through. Once you get sucked in - you're in. I know I have that motherly "oh, I can save you" aspect of my personality that killed me when I walked away. It's so hard to walk away from someone when you feel like their sobriety depends on you (even though it doesn't). I hope I am not out of line. I'm just telling you what I have been through. I hope things work out either way. Let me know how things are going. Good Luck!!
 
Old 12-30-2001, 12:55 PM
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Oh my G-d, Ben you just broke my heart. I'm so sorry...
 
Old 01-02-2002, 11:23 AM
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Hello Molly,

I'm also in love with a cross addict, but I'm happy to say he has almost 6 months clean. Well have a long 7 year history togehter and share a wonderful 5 year old son. When I found out he was using I was already in LOVE with him. I called myself trying to help him, when he didn't want to help himself and I tried to LOVE him when he didn't love himself. When we first met, he told me he was a recovering alcoholic and had 3 months clean, I chose to "stand by my man" it wasn't until several months later when he finally broke down and told me, and when I asked his mother about it, she told me that it was better that I found out myself him. Well throughout those 7 years, he has been in and out of shelters, in and out of programs, we were even engaged once. When I knew that there was NOOOOOO chance of us getting married, stopped wearing the ring and when he knew that I wasn't wearing the ring anymore, he decided to pawn it at a store around the corner from where I lived (I went to that store and saw it in the jewelry case.)

For 3 long years, I left him alone. Just recently he has come back into me & our son's life (that's been at least almost 2 months ago) and he has been clean 5 1/2 months.

Yes Molly it is true that AA & NA asked those who are in recovery NOt to get into a relationship for about 1 year, but we couldn't help ourselves. We know that recovery comes first, so when he needs his space, I give it to him (Although at first I had a real problem with it) but, we're getting through this one day at a time.
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Old 01-02-2002, 05:20 PM
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Molly, This story is so close to my heart. I came to this site back in August b/c I needed advise concerning my friend. I met him when I was 17 and always loved him. 16 years later he came into my life again. He was the same guy I knew so long ago, in addition, he is now an addict. He had been in treatment programs 2 other times and since his 3rd treatment had been out only 3 months when we reconnected. He and his family all thought this time he is really committed to sobriety.

Within a month his behavior changed radically (very much like the behaviors you read about in this site.) I was trying desperately to change his course. I went to NA and Naranon meetings to seek help for him. I came to SR to get advise. There was one person in every support group who made the suggestion that, if I wasn't in too deep already, I should consider not getting involved. Red flags were going off in my head. To me these people had been living in my future and told me to stay away. Right then I decided to set my boundary.

Many months later his mother tells me he is sober, working, and trying to reconsile with his wife. If it is true I am relieved and grateful that he is sober and not living on the street. I still care about his health and happiness but I have come to terms that can not cure anyone and I must work on my own recovery.

I am now doing my own recovery from codependency and low self worth. I think every day that it's hard enough to play out my role in my own life and I must spend my time and energy searching for my own sources of happiness. I continue to come back to SR to read up on the special people who are supportive to one another and working on their own forms of recovery.

I am grateful that I got out when I did and am looking forward to meeting a significant other with whom I can build a nurturing and positive future. Molly, please remember to put yourself first whatever you do! This is just MY story and I wish you success in what ever path you choose.

Shwooz

Ladies and gentlemen, You are all wonderful gentle people. I wish this New Year will be better than the last, for all of us! Peace.
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Old 01-02-2002, 05:39 PM
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Thank you all who have had the compassion and concern enough for a complete stranger to share your very personal experiences and stories and advice with me.

I am taking all of this to heart...while remaining at a distance with the man to whom I refer. It is so hard...I want to be near him...he is special, and I know it.

He was supposed to come over on New Years eve and play board games with me & my kids, watch the ball drop. He called me from the all night meetings that were in progress and said he could not come. He also said he was so grateful that I came into his life, that I was a blessing, called me "sweetie"...yet he maintains his distance. This hurts...but I have come to realize that he is a good enough man, and thinks enough of me that I feel he is trying to protect me by maintaining his distance.

I so wish I could help him, I know I could love him...but it sounds like there are things equally as powerful as love...forces only he can understand and tackle here.

Anyone who has any suggestions, stories, thoughts to share...it is very much appreciated.

God Bless you all in 2002.

Molly

 
Old 01-03-2002, 03:53 AM
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I know it hurts, but believe me, it will be worth it. I remember when my significant other said to me that he needed space. It was very hard because I fell in LOVE with him all over again, I mean this was the same man that I fell in LOVE with 7 years ago, and for hi to say to me "Baby, Give Me MY Space" Huh, I thought the nerve, but today I realize that giving him his space has made me aware of the true him. He shared with me not to long ago, and he's never done that before. Believe me it will be worth it. I use to be disappointed when he didn't show up on days that we were going to spend time together with our son, but it has gotten easier, but our motto is, "Recovery Comes First" Just to give U a little more hope. We're planning a future together..... If you believe that this is the person that GOD has for U, every thing will work out in time. Just be patient.

Sincerely,

A Lady Who knows how U feel
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Old 01-03-2002, 12:11 PM
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Molly,
This could be my life right now! Except my A and I had a relationship before he stopped drinking and then after he stopped he wanted to back off for a while! I didn't get it at all at first but after going to al-anon meetings and talking to people who have been there I am learning that "give me space" doesn't mean I don't want to see you! It simply means I need time to find me and you need time to find you! It's the hardest thing to do, but you don't want to be with him if he's not sure of what he wants! I keep having to tell myself this and it's getting easier every day! We do see each other just not as much, he says it'll get better when he's sure of his sobriety so I have to believe he knows what's best for him right now! GO TO AL-ANON it really helps!! Good luck to you & to me and to all of us!
Kathy
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Old 01-07-2002, 06:10 AM
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If I was you, Id question myself. Why do I want and or seek an alcolholic/drugie; to father my children? To support me, emotionally, finnacially? To create a safe home enviroment,if he relapses will he use clean needles? Are you willing to get aids in case he dosn't? Is he a nice drunk? Will he be rational? Will he be differant and not drink and drive? Will he not use his addiction for countless excuses and affairs? I hope your not feeling sorry for him, or under the impression that "if only I loved him he would love himself, and save himself from himself." People from alcoholic families tend to speak that lauguage and usually either drink or marry alcoholics, no matter what side of the fence your on its not a pretty picture.
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Old 01-07-2002, 07:23 AM
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Molly
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This is for "sssalas", who posted the last reply to my posting, addressed by question. I am not offended, I appreciate your bluntness...but I am a emotionally and intellectually smart woman...so I will outline the answers to these questions that I have in fact asked myself:

If I was you, Id question myself. Why do I want and or seek an alcolholic/drugie; I did not seek a druggie/alcoholic...we met by complete chance in a restaurant (no alcohol served)

To father my children? My children have a father, they are all in Highschool and I have raised them myself for 13 1/2 years. I am not looking for a father-figure for them, they are all great kids...drug & alcohol free to boot.

To support me, emotionally, financially? This man has a solid career, and so do I - I went back to college and worked my butt off to do well for my family. I am not looking for financial support. As far as emotional support...there should always be a back & forth with that in any relationship.


To create a safe home enviroment?
I am a homeowner...saved and did it all by myself. My kids already have a safe and loving home environment. He is also a parent and has a wonderful son that he has done a great job raising despite his addictions.

If he relapses will he use clean needles?
He was alcohol/cocaine...no needles ever.
Are you willing to get aids in case he dosn't? (See above <<< and, you can get Aids from many other segments of society...I am a careful and non-permiscuous woman)

Is he a nice drunk?
I have never seen him drunk. He has been sober for over 3 months.

Will he be rational? I would not know this.

Will he be differant and not drink and drive? His brother was killed by a drunk driver, he has every reason not to do this. According to him he drank predominantly at home.


Will he not use his addiction for countless excuses and affairs?
He currently is celebate while in recovery...and I do not see him being that type of person, drunk or sober.

I hope your not feeling sorry for him, or under the impression that "if only I loved him he would love himself, and save himself from himself."

I feel impressed with him, he was up front about the whole situation. I feel proud of him for taking it upon himself to take control of himself and his addictions, by his own accord. He made these decisions for himself before I ever met him. I believe love could benefit him, as it could all of us. But I am not niave enough to believe that me loving him could save him.

People from alcoholic families tend to speak that lauguage and usually either drink or marry alcoholics, no matter what side of the fence your on its not a pretty picture.

My mother's sister was an alcoholic, and I guess her father, though I never knew him. My parents do not drink, nor do any of my 6 siblings. I was raised in a happy family, as was the man I refer to here. I have never been involved with an alcoholic before.

In closing, please note that I have in fact thought this out quite a bit before coming to this site for support and advice. I am a thinking woman...a good woman. And this man is an exceptional man...regardless of the things that surround him...or I would not even be here posing these questions.

Thank you for your note,

Molly

[This message has been edited by Molly (edited January 07, 2002).]

[This message has been edited by Molly (edited January 07, 2002).]
 
Old 01-07-2002, 08:02 AM
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Hi Molly.
I love a gal who comes out swingin'.

Just started thinkin'... there's a flip side to this coin, and I've been lookin' at it. The addict in my life is in recovery... doing okay... not aces, but okay. He just moved back to this area after an 8 month absence. He's now only 75 miles from me and starting back to school on a vocational rehab grant. I was very pleased to see him when he got here and happy to spend a pleasant day with him doing errandy things to make the school thing an easier process. But he calls several times a day, and I'm guilty of calling him to see if he's doing okay. If this continues it's going to make me nuts. I'm about to say "give ME space." I'm hoping that with classes starting today, this will occur naturally. Now, I'm going to feel like a big meany if this situation doesn't correct itself and I have to do it. But I don't want to find myself "taking care of" an adult man any more.

Space is a good thing. Something I read about relationships in some escoteric literature many years ago said "remember to let the winds of heaven dance between you."

Smoke
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Old 01-07-2002, 09:02 AM
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Thanks Smoke..

Please check your direct e-mail regarding this topic ASAP...

Regards,

Molly
 
Old 01-07-2002, 05:24 PM
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Molly:
Bravo doll! Your are informed & educated; you know who you are & what you want. I like your strength & approach to this. You are not going into it BLIND.
Good Luck & Best wishes
I LOVE LOVE & You deserve a chance at making it work. IMAGINE if all relationships took this much time thought & consideration?
GOOD LUCK!
I am pulling for you. I WISH YOU LOVE
Gold is best!
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Old 01-09-2002, 07:31 AM
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You Go Girl.... I'm pulling for U also..; Like I always say..... what GOD has for U ... It IS for U..... I wish U LOTS of LOVE
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Old 01-09-2002, 06:08 PM
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Dear Molly Sorry!!!! I foregot where this post was!!!!!! Thank you for your responce to my note!!!!! Excellent !!!!! You have done your homework and that is good!!!! Beacuse there are so many types of "alcoholics" ranging from social drinkers to hard core ones with severe problems, I feel its important for you to find out what kind of alcoholic he is. If you find out he's a week-end 1 or 2 beers drinker while using coke that is 95% cut, then hey go for it. But if you find out he's hard core, then that is a whole other ball game. In which I would suggest going to an alenon meeting, there you will see first hand the faces of despair, helplessness and confusion, that many with active alcoholic hosbands/wives go through and live with every day. I also hate to be the one to break it to you but the alcoholic/druggies Ive been involved with since 1977 have all had a problem with lieing, sober or drunk. I don't know if thats the norm, but if I was you Id double check some of the things he tells you. And to be really safe Id check out his record, cause alot of folks end up in AA court appointed, and not initially there to get sober. And if his reason for geting clean and sober is beacause of a court ruling, Id want to know why, domestic violence? Rape? Or what? These things Ive mentioned cross all socio economic berriors as far as I understand, and please don't missunderstand me I dont want to discourage you, but rather to inform you of the knowage that Ive aquired over the years, which is but limited to one life. You have a big heart, to even wana be with an alcoholic/drugies and I comend you on that !!!!. And Good Luck !!!!!
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Old 01-10-2002, 05:35 AM
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First...Thanks to Fathful Lady & Gold Lady for the sweet notes, much appreciated.

And sssalas...read your reply. No apologies necessary, I appreciated your candor. Not being a user/alcoholic, thinking woman or not, there are factors that I would not even have thought of.

I do know that he admitted himself to a hospital program here prior to joining AA..completely voluntary. Also, he was not a one/two beer or drunk on the weekend type.

When we were sitting talking one night, he picked up a quart bottle of spring water & demonstrated his former habit...it was vodka & he said he drank it like water...it actually made me cry when I saw him do that.

He is seeing a counselor once a week to get at the issues that predisposed him to his destructive habits, as well as attending AA, Al-Anon as well as a outpatient program at the hospital.

I don't know him well enough to know if he is a liar...but I know a lot of men (okay, okay & women <grin>)who are liars without being users.

I do know that he is a unique and special man, where men in general are concerned...and believe me, being a single parent & out in the dating scene on & off for 13 1/2 years...I have a pretty good sense about people.

I have chosen to back off...give him time & space for his own personal battles right now...based on some very sincere & good advice I have received in this forum. I will be supportive in the only ways I can think of... i.e. Cards, occasional e-mails & prayers....but from a distance. I can be a good friend too.

Not to be too philisophical, but I believe that God has a purpose for every meeting...for every person who's lives come together, even if only briefly: The old woman that you hold the door for in the shopping center, the kid who dropped his ice cream cone & you buy him another one, the person you let into traffic in their car, a smile. You never know how, even the smallest thing you do, could have a big effect on someone's life. I believe our meeting was destined, for whatever purpose it serves.
What I would "like" isn't always what it should be....I realize this.

If he calls me up in 9 months and says "I'm ready for you", I may not be ready for him. I will let God handle this situation, and I will just do what I do. He touched my heart, and maybe I touched his..time will tell.

Kind Regards,

Molly
 
Old 01-10-2002, 10:33 AM
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You sure have a good head on your shoulders!!!! When I met and fell in love with my current alcoholic, I had made so many extreamly bad chioces prior, that I prayed like never before to Jesus for an answer, "Is this the guy for me?" He answered me!! And I got married, and though the road hasn't been smooth sailing with his drinking, Ive accepted the facts and possible consequences that accompany it...
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Old 01-12-2002, 08:21 AM
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Molly, Molly, Molly....

You are me and your addict is he (Robert). I was the straight girl, good girl. He was the worldly, wild, exciting, erotic bad boy. Oh, that makes for such a beautiful, romantic, alluring story of love. The thought of him still makes me absolutely crazeeeeeee and the reality of him and me makes me absolutely INSANE. (Do you understand the difference?)

I never did drugs of any kind. I drank, but not much. I came from an alcoholic family, BUT I HAD MY CRAP TOGETHER (yea right). I'm very smart, very analytical, don't make snap decisions, think things through very thoroughly, read and read and read. He was a cross addict (alcohol, cocaine, pot) who was in recovery when we met, had been for almost a year by then. Three months later he'd started smoking pot, ended up going to jail for 10 days on probation violation (he says it was unrelated to him smoking pot again, but frankly the reason he wouldn't go see his prob. officer is because he was smoking pot again, therefore he violated probation ...yadda yadda.) He was in recovery again for about another year before he started smoking again ... which is how I ended up here on the message boards.

Robert and I started out as friends and became much much more. I shared things with him I had never told anyone in my life. He shared intimate, painful, private thoughts and incidents with me as well. We wrote each other e-mails, poems, had long telephone conversations filled with love and hope and promises and dreams. We fell in love. He was my knight in shining armour and I was his angel. And to this day, I still feel the same way about the man I met. I still love him with all my heart. I still dream about sharing a life with him one day, but chances are...none of that will ever happen and that tears me apart daily.

The reality of our relationship was I was a co-dependent and he an addict. In the recesses of mind, I thought God had brought us together to take care of each other. That's such screwed up, co-dependent thinking.

I'm not going to tell you to give up hope on your friend or a relationship with him because first of all, that's not what you want to hear and you're going to believe what you want to believe. My advice to you is to start going to Al-Anon and Nar-Anon meetings in preparation for having a relationship with him. You are going to need the advice, the wisdom, the strength that you can only get from other people who love an addict too.

Read the postings from me on these message boards. You'll get the gist of our whole ugly fairy tale.

I'll tell you what I shared with another person who asked about relationships with an addict....I have read success stories between addicts and between addicts and co-dependents, but they've all come from Al-Anon, AA, Nar-Anon, and NA. All of the stories involved two people who were actively working recovery programs. I don't think a relationship between two such individuals has a chance in hell of surviving any other way. You have children: Consider what you may be exposing them to then decide if all this prep work is going to be worth the risk.

I'm just beginning my recovery so I don't have boundless wisdom to share with you, but I do have experience with what does NOT work. If you ever want to talk, please feel free to e-mail me. I'm [email protected]

Heels

[This message has been edited by HellOn2Heels (edited January 12, 2002).]
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