: Bereavement

Get support following a drug or alcohol related death

Bereavement

3 threads

28 posts

I just lost my brother by

Hi all. My brother died earlier this year from alcoholism. He was only in his mid forties and we are all heartbroken. We tried to help him but he locked us out of the house and denied he had a problem. For the last year of his life I think he was drinking every day and after his death we found bottles of vodka in his home which he was obviously drinking neat. I'm having a lot of issues coming to terms with his death and i dont think I ever will. I am trying to understand this addiction that is more powerful than love and family, that drove my successful brother to self destruct. I also cannot understand his denial. How could he pretend that everything was ok when it was clearly not? I would love to hear your stories and if you can help me understand this disease I would be very grateful. Thank you

My husband died by

I'm struggling with feelings following the death of my husband last month. He was in his mid-40s, and a highly intelligent, very successful businessman. He was also a cocaine addict, but no one knew unless he told them. He had periods of abstinence followed by what he called a relapse, which was a drug binge. During this time he would disappear away from home and be uncontactable, spending hundreds and sometimes thousands of pounds. In the last year of his life, this all increased in frequency. The last six months were particularly bad. After his death, I found out that since January he'd been using at least once a week on average, and was ordering quantities of anywhere between 2g and 5g. He would just this in one night over the course of a few hours. On the night he died, he had disappeared on a binge, but I didn't know this until the following day. He had ordered 2g which he had taken over two hours, and then a couple of hours later he was walking it off in town when he literally dropped dead in the street. Since he died I've found out a lot about his use, about where he was getting money etc and I am finding it hard to process. Our relationship had deteriorated because he was always snappy and in a bad mood, and it felt like he had completely disconnected from me. He barely wanted to spend any time with me at all, and always prioritised anything else to the point we spent very little time together at all. I wanted it to be different, but he didn't. Having looked through his phone in the last month, it seems he had an awful lot of contact with prostitutes, who he paid to get the drugs for him. He was making arrangements with them once or twice a week to get the drugs, would take it while they were there and then leave. On his phone was a video of one of these sessions, and it was really upsetting. I looked after the money (at his request) so it was hard for him to get hold of it, but I've now discovered he spent one of his children's savings as unknown to me he had access to it. I have also found that he was searching for pawn shops, and many of his possessions have gone missing, including gifts I bought him (even his wedding present from me). He has left us with nothing - because of his addiction he could not get life insurance, and we are about to lose our home. I feel sad, betrayed and angry, even though I know the addiction had taken over in the end and it wasn't really *him*. The him before the addiction was the kindest, most generous, gentle person you could ever meet. He worked tirelessly for his family and always put others first. I am stunned he could have been so unfaithful so many times, and devastated that he died in the street far from home. I'm not sure how to reconcile all these conflicting feelings.

How to deal with addiction stereotype within the family by

My sister took drugs, mainly heroine, for over 20 years. Then six years ago she accidentally overdosed and passed away. Her children were taken into care and our family settled into a time of grieving; and also I must admit relief. During her time she did things to our family that caused no end of upset, but at the end of the day she was still my sister, so I had to deal with a pull of emotions - hating the addict but loving my sister. In time, and with help, I've come to understand the lack of control a drug addict has over their own behaviour and have forgiven what has passed. This has finally brought me peace and allowed me to move on with my life, without the constant anger and self-protection mechanisms that came to control my own personality. Unfortunately my wife still believes a drug addict is in full control of their destiny and all my sister's actions, including her ultimate death, were her own fault and deserving of no sympathy. She drags up all the bad things my sister did during her life and insists I stop feeling sorry for her. This is now causing old wounds to be reopened for me and is increasing tension within my own family. Does anyone have any advice I can offer my wife so she understands the pain her views are having on me?