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Lost and Regretful-New to Forum

Old 08-26-2013, 01:28 PM
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Lost and Regretful-New to Forum

Over a year ago I left my husband. A choice I am now unsure of and actually regret. We had been together for 8 years and married for four. The last year and a half of our marriage my spouse developed a gambling addiction. By the time I left I was tired. I was tired of the constantly absence. I was tired of struggling to pay bills. I was tired of the personality changes that were occurring. This last feeling should have been a clue to the secret he was hiding. My husband, the love of my life, had relapsed into meth addiction. When we starting dating he was two years clean and had a colorful history(arrests, prison time, previous rehab attempt) related to his addiction. He rebounded and took charge of his life. He worked a full time job and was promoted to supervisor. He attended a 12 step meeting weekly and for a brief time attended therapy. Then, it started to fall apart. He was injured on the job. A major surgery ensued complete with pins in his spine. Then, his pain doctor prescribed him three major narcotics for pain despite having knowledge of my spouseís addiction history.

I know now he relapsed two years into our marriage. I had started to notice subtle changes but was unsure of what was happening. I had never seen a meth addict only what was portrayed on TV. I wrote off his ups and downs as the pain meds he was prescribed.

Anyway, I left, only then learning about his relapse. That revelation is a story in itself. I filed for divorce despite his pleadings he was ready to go to counseling; he was ready to get help. For a month after I left he did attend meetings again but then continued his use and I suspect without me present ramped up the usage. It is now a year later and I wish I had stayed. I have learned a lot of about my codependency. I have learned about the enabling behavior I displayed and the parts of the relationship I must own. About my own unhealthy choices in friends. (I had started to surround myself with heavy drinkers) I regret not separating for a year and navigating the waters of treatment together.

I donít know what to do now. A few people around me are probably glad we split. They see the world in black and white/cut and dry. Other friends emphasize with my feelings and are supportive but I can tell they are unsure of what to say. These friends tell me to find my own healing path, find me and let life happen but it is hard I miss my husband.

I feel guilty that I abandoned my partner.

I donít know what to do from here.
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Old 08-26-2013, 03:36 PM
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I don't have any advice hun but I do feel for you what you did took courage most of still love the addicts we have cared for for soooooooooooooooo long, because we married them for love not there addictions, and yes co dependency was an issue for me as well which I am working on your obviously a strong women, I have just accepted my husband back into my life and that is a scary thing in itself, take everyday as it comes is my way forward and find happiness in the little things in life
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Old 08-26-2013, 04:11 PM
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Do you not think that he abandoned you in any way shape or form?

To me its seems like him never being there and not offering any financial stability, and doing meth behind your back and in secret is a form of abandoning you to.

Are you still in contact with him?
Where is he at with his life now?
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Old 08-26-2013, 04:37 PM
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Remember you left for a reason. You can certainly support his from a distance (I do the same with my son) without enabling. Listen to him, encourage him to seek treatment but don't get enmeshed in his life.
If we wants to he can get clean and if in the future you both still want each other you can still get together again.
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Old 08-26-2013, 07:34 PM
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Originally Posted by Suz08 View Post
I feel guilty that I abandoned my partner.
He isn't a child or a dependent, and he abandoned the marriage when he chose drugs.
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Old 08-26-2013, 07:41 PM
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I find that starting to look at things as black and white helps after you've left. Take all the grey matter out...your addict isn't any different than anyone else's addict. I feel like when we throw in all the grey area, we are making excuses for their behavior, or use bad experiences they've had as a reason for their using. Everyone needs to grow, don't beat yourself up for leaving. Be happy from a distance if he succeeds in living a clean life for himself.
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Old 08-26-2013, 08:18 PM
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The first time I filed for divorce from my ex it felt like I was abandoning a sick child rather then divorcing a grown man who made some very bad choices that were destroying our marriage.. The second time I filed, the time I actually went through with it, it felt like I was divorcing a very irresponsible man who acted like a child and who cared about nothing except getting high...

I honestly wish I would have divorced him the first go around, it would have saved me a lot of heartache and grief... No one says that you can't get remarried one day if he really shows that he's serious about his recovery... Right now take care of you and do what's best for you, not him or anyone else but YOU!!
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Old 08-26-2013, 10:40 PM
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It sounds like you hung in with him and his addiction(s) and ended up in true physical pain/exhaustion. Stepping away and allowing yourself time to heal, examine your own life sounds like it was the right choice to bring you back to a healthy place.

I have regrets over separating with my husband so quickly after his addiction was identified. He made it clear he didnt see a problem and didn't want to stop, but having no background we were both so naive about drugs and addiction. We did get back together; a little over a year later is when he basically came home and asked for help.

What is the status with your ex now? Did he stop using, or is he getting any kind of help? Have you been in contact, and how is it between you?

Questions I would ask myself; was the relationship healthy and fulfilling before the drug use began? Would you be willing to go through another relapse down the road ? How have you been doing on your own? Dig deep to find why you regret ending the relationship - i.e. maybe you are lonely, or the opposite feel free and happy and have guilt over moving on with your life?

If he is in the same place as he was when you left, then getting back into the situation would probably not lead to a fulfilling relationship. You might be better suited to cope now, and carry on with your own life in a productive way; but don't you deserve the whole package in a relationship?

Having said that, at the point my husband chose treatment; rehab, working with a therapist- I've stood by him, welcomed him home, and we both continue to work on ourselves, our marriage, and family.

I wish you peace in whatever choices you make going forward. None of the choices we make are easy, and most are made with many unknown variables in play. We just do the best we can.
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Old 08-27-2013, 09:53 AM
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Originally Posted by heatherp78 View Post
I don't have any advice hun but I do feel for you what you did took courage most of still love the addicts we have cared for for soooooooooooooooo long, because we married them for love not there addictions, and yes co dependency was an issue for me as well which I am working on your obviously a strong women, I have just accepted my husband back into my life and that is a scary thing in itself, take everyday as it comes is my way forward and find happiness in the little things in life
Thank you for your support. I don't always feel that strong. I like your idea about finding happiness in the little things. Sending positive thoughts your way as you and your husband move forward.
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Old 08-27-2013, 10:00 AM
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Originally Posted by Sasha4 View Post
Do you not think that he abandoned you in any way shape or form?

To me its seems like him never being there and not offering any financial stability, and doing meth behind your back and in secret is a form of abandoning you to.

Are you still in contact with him?
Where is he at with his life now?
Great question. Yes, I do at times try to reframe and acknowledge that his secret use was a form of abandonment but then I think about my unhealthy drinking that occurred before his relapse. Then I wonder who abandon who first, then the ruminations start...
Yes, I do have periodic contact with him. He lives a few hours away which for this codie is probably a blessing. He lives with his dad and last I heard was attending support meetings and trying to find a sponsor. He lives in a very rural part of the state and services are limited.
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Old 08-27-2013, 10:04 AM
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Originally Posted by jerect View Post
The first time I filed for divorce from my ex it felt like I was abandoning a sick child rather then divorcing a grown man who made some very bad choices that were destroying our marriage.. The second time I filed, the time I actually went through with it, it felt like I was divorcing a very irresponsible man who acted like a child and who cared about nothing except getting high...

I honestly wish I would have divorced him the first go around, it would have saved me a lot of heartache and grief... No one says that you can't get remarried one day if he really shows that he's serious about his recovery... Right now take care of you and do what's best for you, not him or anyone else but YOU!!
I, too, have felt as if I was abandoning a sick child rather than an adult. I had stopped to recognize the person I fell in love with. There was a complete stranger standing in front of me yet looked and sounded like my husband.

How did you detach and focus on living for you?
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Old 08-27-2013, 10:44 AM
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Originally Posted by allforcnm View Post
It sounds like you hung in with him and his addiction(s) and ended up in true physical pain/exhaustion. Stepping away and allowing yourself time to heal, examine your own life sounds like it was the right choice to bring you back to a healthy place.

Hmm, I hadn't thought of it that way. That's a great summary of how I felt and what I needed to do to see through the fog.

I have regrets over separating with my husband so quickly after his addiction was identified. He made it clear he didnt see a problem and didn't want to stop, but having no background we were both so naive about drugs and addiction. We did get back together; a little over a year later is when he basically came home and asked for help.

Yes! I was so naÔve about addiction when we started dating and got married. Looking back I wish, despite he the fact he was completely sober at that time, that I had started to attend or immerse myself in understanding addiction. I would have bee more prepared to identify red flags.

What is the status with your ex now? Did he stop using, or is he getting any kind of help? Have you been in contact, and how is it between you?

He lives with his dad a few hours away. I tried to go no contact but failed. I have been successful I tapering contact. Last I heard, he was attending support meetings and trying to find a sponsor. He lives in a very rural area of the state so resources are limited. He has been unemployed for the past year and is currently doing odd jobs. He has stated he knows he needs intensive therapy/treatment but lacks the funds to do this.

Questions I would ask myself; was the relationship healthy and fulfilling before the drug use began? Would you be willing to go through another relapse down the road ? How have you been doing on your own? Dig deep to find why you regret ending the relationship - i.e. maybe you are lonely, or the opposite feel free and happy and have guilt over moving on with your life?

I love these question. Very thought provoking. Before his drug use, yes the relationship was fulfilling. I felt complete. I felt "home." I have struggles on my own I imagine that some is from being lonely, some is form being in the house we shared and I think of all the good times, and some is most likely guilt from trying to move forward and sad that I can't take him along with me. I also get sad that I can't share my excitement when I make a breakthrough in therapy or when just when something great happens that he would love or find funny.

If he is in the same place as he was when you left, then getting back into the situation would probably not lead to a fulfilling relationship. You might be better suited to cope now, and carry on with your own life in a productive way; but don't you deserve the whole package in a relationship?

Having said that, at the point my husband chose treatment; rehab, working with a therapist- I've stood by him, welcomed him home, and we both continue to work on ourselves, our marriage, and family.

I wish you peace in whatever choices you make going forward. None of the choices we make are easy, and most are made with many unknown variables in play. We just do the best we can.
You make excellent points. Perhaps I need to stop looking back and look forward. Make the best of today and acknowledge that there are several unknown variables that I can't control.
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Old 08-27-2013, 04:27 PM
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Originally Posted by Suz08 View Post

I, too, have felt as if I was abandoning a sick child rather than an adult. I had stopped to recognize the person I fell in love with. There was a complete stranger standing in front of me yet looked and sounded like my husband.

How did you detach and focus on living for you?
Detaching was hard because for so long I wanted control over the outcome.. Going to alanon helped me to realize that I had control over nothing that no matter how much I tried to love him or fix his problems he was not going to change, my life was truly unmanageable.. So I started working on me.. Made some goals, made some new friends, took up some new hobbies ( I can knit a scarf and hat now like no ones business) and basically filled my life with positive activities and surrounded myself with positive people.. I begin to notice how other husbands treated their wives and it certainly was not how my husband was treating me.. I realized that I was putting up with things that I would not put up with from a bad roommate and that's just what he was a bad roommate.. One day he shoved me and I said DONE!!! But even before that incident I was getting my ducks in a row to file for a divorce.. I had come to realize that I owed it to myself to not be in a marriage where I did all the work and all he did was lie and get high... It took me a long time to get to that place but each day got me closer and closer.. The awesome help I got here on SR helped me as well...
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Old 08-29-2013, 07:09 AM
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Thank you for sharing your experience, jerect. Knitting is an amazing skill.
I have been trying to surround myself with positive people and removing myself from the unhealthy people I was around before my husband relapsed. I tried an al-anon group in my area but was not impressed with the dynamics. I was the youngest in the group and felt judged. I have also been trying to evaluate how I have attempted to people please for years even before I met my now ex-husband.
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