Originally Posted by lifeguard
Overall I'm just shocked at the level of judgement & harshness in this thread. Dh & I have had so many ups & downs in our relationship (which is rock solid btw) but if I was partnered with many of the posters here I would have been kicked to the curb.
I honestly feel a relationship is a lot less cut & dry, black & white than all of this. There is obviously hurts both ways & as a couple you need to discuss it & come up with a solution that can work for you. And maybe you will need to have this conversation many times.
There is a large difference between judgement and discernment. Judgement is thinking/believing that someone is__________, fill in any number of adjectives (usually negative): lousy, no good, worthless, a dirt bag, etc.
Discernment is selecting what you wish to have in your life. I have discerned that I do not wish to have an addict as my life partner or someone I trust with the care of my children (regardless of the substance). This is far different than saying that a person with an addiction is not worthy of me. For me, it's a matter of not wishing to have to monitor my partner and shape my interaction with him in accord with what I observe. For example, I don't want to have to tread lightly around someone who has yet to have their morning coffee because until the caffeine is flowing in their veins, they are crabby (or smoke, or drink etc). This is a decision I am making for myself and isn't a judgement of someone else. I don't wish to have to consciously monitor my behavior and temper it in accord with how craving, influenced or hung over someone is and I don't want my children to have to do so either.
I feel the same way about lying. I don't wish to have to have to wonder in the back of my mind if my partner is telling me the truth. I don't want to be doing the mental gymnastics of keeping track of every little thing he says looking for the discrrepencies that would indicate he's lying (again). Or the physical act of looking over phone bills and computer histories and other things that people who live with liars often do to find the peace of mind that they are actually being told the truth.
Lack of trust is an inherent part of living with an addict. Having trouble coping is a fact of life with an addict. People get habituated to their stress relief and for someone actively in the midst of an addiction, that includes reaching for a cigarette, a drink or what ever their drug of choice is. Addicts need to learn new coping skills, new behaviors and to set new habits - healthy ones.
A bit of personal history here: For me, my experience with an addict came while I was still single and without children. I knew that I wanted children some day and I knew that I never wanted to say tol my child "Daddy loves you but he has a problem." and I never ever wanted to have to take a child to jail to visit Daddy. I walked away from the greatest love I have ever known because I wouldn't bring a child into knowingly having a father who was an addict. I still love that man - right to the core of my being. He is a wonderful, gentle and loving soul - but I understand that I cannot have the life I want for myself and my children with him. I don't judge him. I make decisions for me.