My intent is to tell this story with compassion and feeling, and not to conjecture up judgment or scolding from anyone else. I am ok with recreational drugs, I smoke weed every day. Sometimes a lot. It’s not the same, but it keeps me off the booze. The hardest part I find about writing these pieces is I have to go back there. To the memory, to the feelings, it feels like ripping your guts out all over again. My heart burns, and I cry every time I try to write this one. I’m glad I can just step outside and sit and smoke. It’s hard but necessary. This is what I do in my spare time when Jackie and Liv are asleep. It is so quiet and peaceful when the kids are sleeping and the birds are chirping. Just me, my lazy cats in the yard, and my old computer. I’ve wanted to write this piece for a long time. And I am still processing parts of it. Well, parts of it don’t have the ending I want.
I fell in love with a man, who couldn’t love me back the way I wanted. I still love that man, he still loves me also. We are not on speaking terms right now. I did something I’d never thought I’d do. I gave him a hard ultimatum. It was cruel. I ripped his feet right out from under him. I honestly felt and still feel, it was him or me. Fighting for my life, his life. Rehab or me. He chose neither and is now in the wind.
We have been in a relationship for a few years. We got on like a house on fire from the moment we met. He’s hilarious, smart, and handsome. He can play guitar, drums and is also good at a lot of sports. We could talk about anything on the earth. And we pretty much have. The only thing we couldn’t talk about was his secret life as an addict. We talked about drugs. In fact, we did lots of drugs together for a while. He is very good at hiding it and refuses to honestly talk about it but it’s not so secret…I think a lot of people suspect that is what’s been going on. I outed him last summer after I cleaned out his car. I told one of his close childhood friends. The friend wasn’t surprised and reached out to him but I don’t think they are that close anymore. He wasn’t an addict when I met him. Or maybe he was. My gut told me at 6 months in but he denied it, so I did too. I denied it for a long while. To my and his detriment. I don’t deny it anymore. He still does. He would rather let people think he is lazy, unreliable, and just a general jerk. He is not those things when he’s sober. Denial is a very real thing.
Heroin is a ‘seductive mistress’ – Seductive because you can’t stay away, a mistress because it steals all your time and eventually consumes you. Many people have said it, but I actually see it. It strangles the person inside you. It offers warmth, protection, and an emotional release to those who use it, and It refuses to let anything or anyone else in. Maybe that’s the point.
From a loved one’s perspective, it kills you slowly without you even knowing it. A very lonely and scary place to be. I feel like I’m the sober addict, with him gone from my life it feels flat, uninteresting, hollow. I am like a ghost, floating from room to room, waiting for the real me to come back. I go through phases of being angry and then sad. I know removing his chaos from my life is the kindest thing I could do for myself, but the way I had to do it it feels so sad, sneaky, underhanded.
Opiate withdrawal is so bad, it sounds like death is better. And that saying, the one about the addiction brain doing push-ups waiting to take over the sober one. His took over before I even knew what was happening, and him too, I think. A controlling, manipulative being appeared that lived like a savage. The person I love is not the person who I last saw, wearing sunglasses at night and disappearing for days at a time. Not the person who passive-aggressively punishes me for telling him to slow down, rest, sleep, eat. Not the person who is constantly on the hunt or next shakedown.
He is the person who cares about Jackie. He is the person who makes me laugh. He is the person who said he admired me. He is the person who inspired me and helped me get sober. He is the person who said he couldn’t wait to see what I would create. He is my best friend and I miss him terribly. He is probably the strongest, most resourceful person I know. He tried to clean up, stop using it many times. But only enough to stop the questions, only enough to continue more secretly. Part of my motivation to write this? My secret desire is he reads this and rushes to rehab.
I don’t think he is even thinking about me anymore. I think he is in survival mode.
And you can’t make people do what they don’t want to do.
Regardless, I pray every night. And I still mean all the things I said; I love you, your lifestyle is out of control. For you and me, I want you to go to a long-term rehab facility. I want you to tell your family, I want you to tell your parents. I will help you. Please don’t let it be none. Your lifestyle with this cunty little mistress scares me like nothing else.