First, I would like to go ahead and apologize for the length of this post.
DH and I have been together for 4 1/2 years. We have a 3 year old son together and together we raise my 6 year old daughter from another marrige.
DH and I are both young. I am 23, he is 22. When we got together, he had only been out of highschool for a short time. I had already been married and divorced and had a child, as I had gotten pregnant at 16 and dropped out of school to get married and start my family.
DH was also a virgin when I married him, which I like very much. He is an all around wonderful guy. We all love him a appreciate him very much. But I feel that he is stuck in high school phase. When I got with him, he was in a band and the band did what many other rock bands do- drink alot of alcohol and smoke alot of weed, pop pills occasionally and even use cocaine ever now and again.
He left most of that behind and only drinks a few beers every now and again and also smokes occasionally. A few years ago, when his BIL still lived with us, he introduced him to 'legal highs/natural highs' that he had found on the internet. BIL intoduced DH to these because they both worked at a factory that paid very well that also did drug screenings and they didnt want to loose their jobs.
Its been over a year since BIL moved out and ever since he first introduced DH to legal highs, he has been on them ever since. He was hooked on one called kratom and had a really hard time getting off of it. He was lots of severe withdrawl symptoms such a sweating and vomiting, It was serious. DH has never had much self control and doesnt know how to limit himself and use these legal highs once every now and again- he uses them CONSTANTLY. Even BIL made comments about his use. He would get us at 3:00am to go to work, and drink 2 bottles of kratom ( which is like a natural muscel relaxer-very strong and addictive ) and fall asleep on the ride to work, so he would chug several energy drinks to wake himself up enough to work. It just didnt make since to me nor anyone else why he would do this to himself. Why take a 'downer' when you know you need to wake up?
After he got off of thatm he moved on to legal smokes, which is the issues now. He was even used a legal product that suppose to feel like cocaine. He now smokes MANY times day. He is high from the time he gets up until he goes to bed. He stayes messed up. I havent seen him sober in awhile and when I do, it only last for a day or 2 until he gets his next order in the mail.
He lost his job over 10 months ago and has since had nothing to do except get messed up. He is now going to college, which just started in January and he acts like a child about getting up in the morning. I have to wake him up to go to a simple 45 minute algebra class. He wines and tells me that Im acting like his mother because I ask him to go since he is the one that wanted to do this in the first place. I personally, didnt want him to go to school because I though he should get a job and support his family right now. My 6 year old does a beeter job at getting up for school in the morning. He makes me feel like crap. Im not his mother- im his wife. Im tired of havng to be his mom and having to remind him to be responsible. This is pushing up apart.
It is obvious to me that Im much more mature than DH which is understandable- ive been through much more than him and have learnt more about life.
He will now go from doing the legal cocaine, which gives him lots of energy and will literally keep him up for days to smoking bowl after bowl of legal smoke to calm him down enough for sleep. And sometimes hell do another line inbetween and then complain abotu not being able to go to sleep. This is getting ridiculus.
Im down to my last nerve. Two days ago, DH and I had a long talk about his low self esteem and how that relates to the legal drugs and his actions. I felt that I had finally made a break through with him. I explained how his child hood played a major role in his life and how he looks at himself. We talked for over 3 hours. He cried and cried and finally opended up to me. Afterwards, he even looked younger and happier. It was like a fog had been in his eyes and suddenly it had cleared. He started applying what I had taught him about writting him his journal and really healing old wounds so that he could grow. It was a great . I was very happy for him and very proud of myself.
But this morning, he had a tantrum about having to go to class. He said some hurtful things to me.
Any advice> ANy BTDT stories for me?
Thanks in advance.
Magickal Mama to DD (6) & DS (3). Soul mate to DH.
HuntressMother, first I'd like to offer you some hugs. This is a difficult situation and you and your children are lucky to have you so thoughtfully taking care of them.
It sounds like your husband is struggling with addiction. As a first step, I recommend going to Al-Anon meetings (http://www.al-anon.alateen.org/); the meetings are free and provides support to people who have a family member or close friend who is an alcoholic or addict. Some of the meetings (at least in the area where I live) provide child care. Al-Anon also has online meetings. By the way, the Al-Anon website speaks a lot about have a loved one who is an alcoholic, but at the meetings I've been to, they are very open to people who have a loved one who is an addict of any or many substances.
You may also want to consider talking with a therapist to explore one-on-one how you want to proceed and to get support during this difficult time.
When you mentioned at the end of your message that your husband said hurtful things to you, I wondered about this; if you feel like your husband is verbal or emotionally abusive, please reach out to local domestic violence resources. If you're not sure if your husband is abusive, this link may be helpful: http://www.thehotline.org/is-this-abuse/am-i-being-abused-2/. (Please note I'm not saying that your husband is abusive, but because some partners who says hurtful things are abusive, when I see someone say that in a post, I want to reach out and provide resources in case that's what someone is dealing with.)
Also, you may want to cross-post in the Parents as Partners forum to get more responses.
I will be thinking of you and your family. Take good care.
Thank you very much for your advice and support. It really helps. Thankfuly, my husband isnt abusive. He just had some abrasive word choices to describe our situation ( which i am a part of ) that was very hurtful. He said that I make him miserable. He has also admitted that since the birth of our son, he doesnt love me as much anymore as well as blaming EVERYTHING on me or someone else who is trying to help...mainly me.
At the moment, since the long deep talk that we had, he is having some sort of internal 'revolution' which I an thankful for because I know that it is very important with his personal growth. He has never done any inner work, as he tends to suppress most things and has never really learned how to deal with this internal growth. I am quite big myself on personal growth. I do alot of inner work and have been doing so for a few years- this is nothing new for me. I am quite the 'activist' and you can always find me with my nose in a spirtual growth book or meditating or something of that nature. Since he has never personally experinced this before, it is quite jarring for him. In a way, i feel that we are out growing each other..or more so, that Ive out grown him. I am in a constant state of growth both spiritualy and mentaly and have been in that state for some time- i know that this is the first true inner work and inner 'revolution' he has ever experienced. This out growing phase gives me many mixed feelings: I am very happy that he has come to face issues from his path, let them out and begin his healing, yet I am very afarid that this will push us apart. I love him very much. I truly feel that he is my 'soul mate'. He and the children mean more than the world to me. They are my life.
I have always asked him to be fully honest with me on all levels, as I have done with him. This has been very difficult for him because he cares for me dearly and is afraid that he will hurt me if he tells me the complete truth.
I have known for a long time that he feels something is missing from his life. I have speculated this because of his drug use. Drugs are used to either dull and internal pain and suffering/temporary relief from reality or to feel a hole/ a space where something is missing. He has opened up and told me about much of this, has he did in greater detail during our 'break through' talk a few nights ago. I felt in my heart that I had truly helped him to know himself better and move from the stagnant place that he had been for so long.
He doesnt understand that nothing you truly want comes to you over night. Now, since his 'revoulution' he feel like doing just that -revolting. Bot he and I share a deep passion for living 'off the grid' and 'living off the land' we want a primal more natural, stress free life. We know that this would be a big change for us, but this is something we want deeply. We have talked about our dream cob house and all of the animal we would have as well as the fruits, veggies and herbs that we would grow in our garden and what a wonderful childhood this would provide for our children. But his idea of reaching that goal now, is to move right out into the middel of the woods without anything: no solar panels, no septic plans- nothing. Ive tried to expain agin and again, his idea of 'being free' -our dream, will back fire on all of us if not carefully planned and saved for.
Hes now dropping out of college that he just started in January because suddenly 'that isnt what he wants to do and it isnt going to make him happy', which I fully respect his choice, but I tried to tell him before he even signed up for college that now is not the best time. And yet again..I was right. But now he blames his unhappiness on me and his SIL ( who lives next door and whom im very close with ) for 'talking him into it' in the first place. All of which, sounds childish and immature. I think he needs to grow up a little and snap back to reality. Nothing happens over night. And nothing difficult ( or not difficult for that matter ) is permanent. Ive talked with him lovingly that about how our stresses is only a passing phase and things will get better. Yet he seems to have no hope in 'the world' itself, and thinks that money is the cause of all of our ( our being the worlds )problems. I agree it is a large part of our problems, but it isnt ALL of the issue.
His change of heart went from being positive and healing and a wonderful growing experience as well as an event that brought us closer together because I felt that I was finally heard by him and all of this psycological/ self growth stuff that a babbel on about isnt crap and that I actually know what Im talking about- to being the complete opposite. Its like..it was almost TOO MUCH of a revolution because hes willing to make unwise chocies to get himself ( and us ) where he wants and feels that we should be.
Im very confused as to what to say anymore. I have talked and talked and covered every issue and have gotten down on a really deep, true, raw level with him- and its now not doing any good.
I asked him earlier does he feel as if hes gotten everything out of our relationship that he can use and that theres nothing left. He said ' I dont know'. He feels as if he doesnt need me anymore. Today also, he through all of his 'drugs' into the trash while crying with anger that I had pointed out how many times he had gotten high recently and told me that he wasnt doing this for me or for himself, but only for our son. Im not being selfish in any way at all, and Im very grateful that he loves our son to such depths- but it was just another reminder that he doesnt love me like he once did.
I am lost-big time.
** PS: please excuse all of the typeo's in this post. I have spotted more than a handful- but im pretty sure its still understandable. I was typing a bit one handed- which makes it difficult to get everything just right. **
Magickal Mama to DD (6) & DS (3). Soul mate to DH.
Can you find a way to get to counseling? Either just him or together.
I feel like this is some pretty serious stuff that needs to be explored with a third party professional.
I'm wondering if he has some depression that could benefit form a combination of medication and counseling. For that, you could just start with a regular doctor.
Good for you for reaching out.
I'm going to agree with the above poster that 3rd party counseling sounds like a good idea. Most definitely your husband needs outside help beyond what you and other family members can offer- however I do understand that he may be resistant to this. I've seen addiction take it's toll on people and their families, and I agree that the addiction is a symptom...but the addiction, and other mental health challenges such as depression/anxiety, also become a problem in and of themselves that can be medically treated to make those underlying issues reachable. A visit to his physician may be a good place to begin, even if simply for referrals to other practitioners.
For you to choose your next step, regardless of what that is, I suggest that you look at what you ultimately want for yourself and your child- in particular looking at the outlook and feeling you want present in your lives. From what you've written it sounds like you are acting as his coach/therapist/counselor and this is taking up a great deal of your life. How is that working for you? Also, is he choosing this, seeking out your assistance? Is he ready, willing, and able to take on his issues? Or are you taking them on for him? How is that impacting your life and the life of your child?
I wish you the best through this difficult time.
Lesley Reid Cross
self-connection supports connected parenting
Thank you for your reply and for those very thought provoking questions. I will be back with further updates on this issue as soon as I can. Thanks again.
Magickal Mama to DD (6) & DS (3). Soul mate to DH.
huntress... has he ever been evaluated for Bipolar? Dh pulled those same things on me. By the way he won't go through with wanting to move out into the woods, he'll just talk about it a lot. Agree or argue.. I'd agree because he's not going to do it anyway. So don't worry about that. DH would tell me all his over the top ideas and I learned to agree and tell him if he did the work... I'd be for it. So once he figured things out and realized the enormity of it all... he would suddenly forget about it. While we were in the military I felt like I spent the entire time keeping him out of trouble. I hated it! He would take things to sleep and take stuff while he was awake. Once he got out... Game on, he did drugs not the legal kind. He's finally in a better place and after two years of therapy he's the stay at home dad and I work and support the family. He could work, but part me does not want to deal with having to rely on him making any kind of money. Ugh I get where you're at and I hope things get better for you. Also for awhile it seemed like he lacked empathy. Constantly thought I was his problem. When In reality, his mind was his problem.
Also, he's never going to be what you want if he is bipolar, it took a lot for me to accept the idea of an "equal" partner was no more. Now he does most of the house work and takes care of our kids. He's good at that. So aside from societies ideas of the norm... all is good now for us.
The legal high drugs are frightening to me. People can die from them, and they are addictive. I would want that to stop immediately, though he will have to want to and likely will have to get professional help.
The other thing I'd say is that you both are very young. He went from being a high school student to being attached with a step-child and his own child on the way in the span of what - a year? That's a pretty intense change at 18/19 years old. I would guess that "what's missing" is the option of living as an adult without all of that responsibility. What's done is done. He needs to deal with the life he has, but I would imagine that he feels restless and a longing because he feels that he missed out on a big part of coming of age in our culture.
My dh had a hard transition to parenthood & the responsibility of a family, too. It took him a long time to accept &, finally, embrace the role of father. Your dh may be in a slump, mourning the loss of his youth/lack of responsibility, yet, overwhelmed by the future. I hope, for both of your sakes, that he will agree to therapy to help him sort it out. I'm sorry you're going through this & hope your dh can get back on track & be an active, contributing member of your family soon.