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Drug addiction has affected my life for so long

Posted by JANE2504 on 24 August 2014.

I'm 50 years old.  I've never taken drugs and I've never drank to excess yet drug addiction has affected my whole life.  I met my husband when I was 15 and he was nearly 10 years older.  I had 4 children with him and divorced him 17 years ago now.  Hindsight is a wonderful thing and when I look back I can see all the signs of his addiction and self destruct course clearly.  In reality it was years and 4 children in until I started to become aware.  I was so naive, I had never met anyone who took drugs (to my knowledge) and I grew up in blissful ignorance.  When I realised he had a problem it was with painkillers and I tried to help thinking he was a good father.  I stuck by him even after he advanced from pain relief to methadone and eventually heroin.  All the time thinking that no one knew and he was a great dad.  There came the time I mostly withdrew and lived in my bedroom as I couldn't stand to be in the same room as him.  The times he was obviously under the influence but he would get on his bended knees and beg and cry and promise on the lives of his children he had taken nothing.  I doubted myself every time.  Even when I found needles in his clothes I stupidly doubted myself when he cried and promised they were not his. Eventually he did something so bad I ended it and even reported him to the police and he was put in jail for 3 months.  All my children were teenagers by then and so embarrassed by their father.  Today, 17 years on I am still watching drugs destroy my family.  As each of my 3 eldest children left home and made new families their father has latched on to each one, one at a time.  Moving in, causing problems in their relationships and then giving them (my daughters) drugs to 'help' with their depression when their relationships break up under the strain.  I have had to call in social services so many times to protect my grandchildren. Today, my eldest daughter is struggling with an addiction to methadone while her 5 children (the last another baby born addicted), the middle, a methadone addict still and the third who took so much pride in her little family, alone and her son living with his dad this last 6 years and no one in the family allowed to see him again. I try to help but struggle to understand how people can chose drugs over their children.  My eldest daughter looks likely to lose her family soon as her partner struggles to do what I did long ago.  This mail will sound such a ramble.  I even moved away so I didn't have to see what was happening.  Its hard to stand by and do nothing and watch your grandchildren being brought up with addicts.  I probably sound so selfish.  But I just don't know what to do any-more.  Its like addiction has been my whole life yet I've never been addicted or even tried anything.  I am a professional woman who has focussed on learning and advancing myself (I left school with no qualifications) in order to be able to concentrate on something as I feel I would be swallowed up by all this if I stopped.  I would give anything for my children but I cant stand by and watch what they do to themselves and their children.  I really don't know what to do anymore.

Comments

CANT TAKE NO MORE
24 Aug 2014

Thank you for sharing this with us....I really feel for family, and hope against hope your children get the help they need xxxx

sk
25 Aug 2014

So sorry to hear this story its bad enough when you have one person in your life addicted to drugs never mind three. Thing is  theres nothing you can do they need to want to help themselves so you have probably done the right thing moving away as hard as it is for you. Keep strong and know you are not alone we all post on here for the same reason. Take care xx

JANE2504
26 Aug 2014

Thanks for your comments.  I feel so sorry for my grandchildren.  I really don't believe children should have to see such things but that thought makes me unpopular with my children.  Besides all this I also feel so embarrassed.  My girls used to be lovely and to see what drugs has done to them is heartbreaking.  They don't have a good tooth left in their heads yet the oldest is only 34.  Its like I live 2 lives and I'm constantly stressed that my professional life will meet my personal.  I moved back to where my children lived a couple of months ago.  Two years ago I had thyroid cancer and I didn't tell them hardly anything because I didn't want to be a reason for them to take drugs.  But I realised that my grandchildren were growing up not knowing me.  I used to blame my ex for getting my children into this but now I have to concede they are making their own decisions.  I truly believe that drugs are the plague of the modern times.  I'm so sad for my children and grandchildren.  Its like everyone always showing off their families so proud and I just stay silent.  I married and had them young but I never took drugs or drank yet they are all on self destruct courses and I do feel guilty.

Amy
28 Aug 2014

Your story has terrified me. I am 21 years old and my long term boyfriend and first love is a heroin addict. I saw all of the signs before I found out for sure, but like you I chose to justify them with other reasons. He's on a rehabilitation programme now and although I know he still uses I do not know to what extent. 
I've been through so much for him and neglected my own feelings and self to ensure his recovery and be as smooth and easy as possible. I bring all the money in because when he's experiencing withdrawal symptoms he can hardly get out of bed, so he is unable to hold down a job. Whilst i'm working to support his living I'm constantly worrying about the possibility of coming home to find his dead body and needle sticking out of his arm. 
It makes me very bitter. Like your husband probably was my boyfriend is a good person who is haunted by an addiction. I'd like to think I can see it through with him and we can have the life we have always dreamed of together, but I am getting to the point now where I think that dream is a naive one.
I dont want to leave him but if something doesnt change soon the rest of my life will be ruined.
When do I start thinking about myself instead of about him?

Amy
28 Aug 2014

Your story has terrified me. I am 21 years old and my long term boyfriend and first love is a heroin addict. I saw all of the signs before I found out for sure, but like you I chose to justify them with other reasons. He's on a rehabilitation programme now and although I know he still uses I do not know to what extent. 
I've been through so much for him and neglected my own feelings and self to ensure his recovery and be as smooth and easy as possible. I bring all the money in because when he's experiencing withdrawal symptoms he can hardly get out of bed, so he is unable to hold down a job. Whilst i'm working to support his living I'm constantly worrying about the possibility of coming home to find his dead body and needle sticking out of his arm. 
It makes me very bitter. Like your husband probably was my boyfriend is a good person who is haunted by an addiction. I'd like to think I can see it through with him and we can have the life we have always dreamed of together, but I am getting to the point now where I think that dream is a naive one.
I dont want to leave him but if something doesnt change soon the rest of my life will be ruined.
When do I start thinking about myself instead of about him?

Amy
28 Aug 2014

Your story has terrified me. I am 21 years old and my long term boyfriend and first love is a heroin addict. I saw all of the signs before I found out for sure, but like you I chose to justify them with other reasons. He's on a rehabilitation programme now and although I know he still uses I do not know to what extent. 
I've been through so much for him and neglected my own feelings and self to ensure his recovery and be as smooth and easy as possible. I bring all the money in because when he's experiencing withdrawal symptoms he can hardly get out of bed, so he is unable to hold down a job. Whilst i'm working to support his living I'm constantly worrying about the possibility of coming home to find his dead body and needle sticking out of his arm. 
It makes me very bitter. Like your husband probably was my boyfriend is a good person who is haunted by an addiction. I'd like to think I can see it through with him and we can have the life we have always dreamed of together, but I am getting to the point now where I think that dream is a naive one.
I dont want to leave him but if something doesnt change soon the rest of my life will be ruined.
When do I start thinking about myself instead of about him?

Icarus_Trust
31 Aug 2014

I'm in disbelief reading your story. You have been through so much and had to witness the horrific change of drugs on family, including your own children. It seems you need a support network, and The Icarus Trust can do that for you. Everyone is trained (and it's free, and they are here to help you), and can "signpost" you to the right sort of help. You can contact them on info@icarustrust.org or on their website www.incarustrust.org.

I wish you all the best and that everyone pulls through!

Icarus_Trust
31 Aug 2014

I'm in disbelief reading your story. You have been through so much and had to witness the horrific change of drugs on family, including your own children. It seems you need a support network, and The Icarus Trust can do that for you. Everyone is trained (and it's free, and they are here to help you), and can "signpost" you to the right sort of help. You can contact them on info@icarustrust.org or on their website www.incarustrust.org.

I wish you all the best and that everyone pulls through!

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