Saturday, October 17, 2015

The road to Hell: What it's like living with an addict

My children are out of school for five days for Fall Break. So far, it's been awesome. But it's also been super busy. So I'll write more about that, perhaps tomorrow. William has been out of town and I'm on my way to the airport to pick him up shortly. Happy weekend!

What It's Like Living With An Addict: The Road to Hell
by Lizzy Smith for Divorced Moms                    
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October 17, 2015
635736290142270719Fotolia_78828652_XS.jpgA close friend of mine, “Kate”, is on a trip to visit her sister, “Alice”, perhaps the last time she will see her alive. Though Alice is just 60-years old, she is an alcoholic and her liver is failing. She actually quit drinking a decade prior but the damage was done. Also permanently damaged was the relationship she had with her husband (after 15 years of hell, he left), children whom she has not seen in years, and siblings. Most of the family had to “cut her off” because they were tired of the endless excuses, theft, lies, and more.

As I’ve written numerous times, if you are married to an addict, or if you are dating one, you need to seriously consider what they hell you are doing to yourself and your children. Because you likely will never heal him but there is probably time to save yourself and children from the pain and trauma you will experience for decades and, likely, forever. I tell my story of life with an alcoholic frequently on this blog but what is the impact of addiction to the countless other families who struggle with these terrible affects every day? Here are some universal traits. If you've ever lived with an addict, I’ll bet you can see your own life in most of these.

-Secrets and lies: First, the addict lies to himself that he has a problem at all. IF he admits to it, he will go through periods where he will blame you for his addiction and other times when he will tell you he really isn’t sick at all, it’s all in your head. You will begin to doubt your own sanity. He will lie to you where he is at and where he has been, and what he is drinking. I remember too well Rob carrying around a soda until I would have a sip and realize that it was a lot of alcohol with a splash of root beer. He will deny and accuse. He will vanish for hours in the guise of “running errands,” which, in reality, means he is out feeding his cravings.

-Laziness: Expect an addict to not pull his own weight, or any weight, around the house (at least not consistently). After binging, it’s amazing how much rest, relaxation, retreats and vacations an addict needs. Most of the home’s chores will rest on your shoulders.

-You will stop recognizing yourself. Many partners of addicts become codependent or more isolated from people they love. They dread making plans (who knows if the addict will be emotionally well enough for anything), and the thought of unannounced visitors can be frightening. You will drown yourself in your partner's endless needs and drama.

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