: Drugs, alcohol and mental health

Discuss the twin challenges of mental health and substance use

Drugs, alcohol and mental health

31 threads

176 posts

My husband needs help by

Firstly, i want to apologise for this being such a long post, i don't have much in the way of support and i am literally at the end of what i know i should deal with. I want to paint the picture wholly so you can understand perfectly. My husband (3 years - together for 10) is a cocaine and possible alcohol addict. We have 1 daughter together (7 years) and a son on the way (28 weeks pregnant) He is not a bad person, he has such a good heart, he is kind, caring, romantic etc until he uses, then he changes for 2-3 days at a time. I am not prepared to give up on him yet, and want to find the best way to support him. I am a carer to my disabled father, who lives with us, and i don't have a driver's license limiting my capabilities to do things like shop etc He started using about 4 years ago, during preparation for the wedding, he admitted he was “curious about it” and obviously started the downwards spiral from there. I told him of my thoughts of it and how i didn’t like such a vial drug and he vowed to stop. Which he did for a few months, but then one day started back up again. This was a constant cycle until last year when it become more increased usage. At first it was just once a month maybe even less, and was only recreational, he would return home and i would be non-the wiser. Until one night (2 years ago) we went out together (which we rarely do anymore) and he was kicked out of the club for being caught trying to use in the toilet. We argued because he ruined my night and he promised never again. He stayed clean for over 6 months. It was only when his grandad died that he really started hitting it hard. About a year ago, money started vanishing and started to put us in alot of trouble with bills/debt, but he kept denying where the money had gone, telling me he was still owed money from work (self employed scaffolder) or that he used it to buy X item which cost “more” than it actually did. Of course i believed him, i didnt want to think that he was using again. Until i caught him grinding his teeth one day and showing all the signs of being completely off his face. At christmas we basically had no money, which was very upsetting for me as it meant daughter would not get many if any presents, something i never thought i’d have to contend with. He then started giving me his wages, at least for about 3 weeks. By now it seemed he was using weekly, but only on a friday as his friday treat after work. Just before i found out i was pregnant he agreed to change his job as he felt the job was the influencing factor to his usage. He set about looking for a new job, but all the while his mental health took a nasty turn. He started crying for no reason (which is completely unlike him) having nasty nightmares about something happening to me or daughter which scared him and eventually he agreed to go to the doctors, who signed him off work for a month to allow really strong anti-depressants to get into his system. Our finances took another turn and we became flooded with debt. After returning to work his kind, loving caring nature started to disappear at the weekends again, he would just not return home, ignore or even block me on the phone and leave me wondering if he was even safe. At the end of feb, i found out i was pregnant again, and he was over the moon. His “normal” self returned he was attentive, wouldn’t even let me make myself a hot drink. Until st georges day when he went out and got absolutely smashed. He was supposed to be picking our daughter up from her after school curricular activity, but failed and meant that my dad had to go instead. We ended up in the worst argument of our relationship as i pointed out his utter lack of responsibility to our daughter, being pregnant too my hormones were everywhere, he lied down on the sofa and just told me to “F*** off” one thing led to another and he accidently hit me (waved his hand at me and it connected to my mouth) he was immediately remorseful, jumped up to comfort and help me. Unfortunately i had my 12 week scan the next day and the midwife saw my face and jumped into action. Since then things have been so chaotic with social services involvement and constantly being watched by midwives, and my husband is somewhat plagued with guilt. So plagued that he uses cocaine to cloud his disgust in himself. He seeked help and was doing well, 5 weeks clean (which was remarkable from where we were) things were returning to normal in the household and everything seemed like it was getting back on track. Then his sister (lives a distance away) was in the area and popped in. Her partner is a daily cocaine user and as you can imagine one thing led to another and husband ended up relapsing. Since then hes used every week again, and he says he wants to stop but hes so weak he cant say no. he goes to the pub to collect his weekly wages and i used to go with him, to help him avoid temptation, but now he just goes straight from work and lies and says hes stuck at work. He says that his issue is when he has a pint or two he gets the craving for coke and one thing leads to another, but now hes picking it up and bringing it home (without my knowledge) and when we put daughter to bed, he literally spends the rest of the night (9/10pm -3am) in the bathroom for long periods of time. Thats how i know hes using, but short from literally kicking down the door and causing it to wake people up… what can i do. He never leaves instruments lying around and always cleans up after himself. Its only because a few times ive noticed the little white powder drops, which ive spoken to him about and now he cleans the floor to either stop me noticing it, or to keep it clean because of daughter. He wont talk to me, he wont be honest with me and as of the last 3 weeks hes just not been returning home atall on the friday. He says “ill be 5-10 mins” on a friday and then i don't see him until saturday afternoon. He ignores me again, blocks me and the only message i'll get is i think it's best for you if i disappear. When hes sober he agrees he needs help, that he doesnt want to do it, he hates the after effects, the disappeared money to overall destructive-ness of the drug but then friday hits and we’re back to square one. I deem fridays as the “night from hell”. How can i help him? Im worried ive enabled him and i want to stop that, but he also has basically no support network other than me, im worried about his mental health and what would happen if i kicked him out. Theres times when i have told him not to come home in his state and when he sobers up he returns looking so ill. He doesnt sleep, eat and makes me worry even more about him. I have a support network that are helping me to look after me and my daughter to try and stop us taking on the problem, but when your a family unit that relies on him to bring home the bacon its very hard. Threatening him that he will lose us makes him run and hide - which in turns sends him on his coke path, but i cant just “accept” it because its not healthy for any of us. I love him very much and cannot imagine my life without him in it. I am not ready to give up on him. Our daughter is seemingly unaffected by the problems, shes always branded “a happy child” shes well looked after by me, and with my dads help she gets all attention a child could need. She also doesnt want daddy to leave, and he doesnt want to leave either. Thank you in advance for any guidance :)

Am I over thinking this... by

I've been with my husband for years but no children, we love each other very much and we can be quite happy, apart from the problem with alcohol. I have never been a big drinker, nor have I come from a family who drinks a lot. We like a couple here and there, but to be quite honest I spent a lot of time not drinking, just because it didn't interest me. Him, on the other hand, is the polar opposite, comes from a family of people who drink to access. He almost sees me as odd because I don't but I completely get why people like a drink, as I do sometimes. When we were a bit younger, I'd lose him for days. He'd go out for a few and not come home, or he'd crawl in an absolute mess. I could never get hold of him because he would just ignore me, as he knew he'd be in trouble I assume. I then spent ages calling around his friends because I'd fear the worst. We've had trips booked and he knows about them, and we'd be leaving to go early and he'd crawl in absolutely smashed after saying he'd go for a few. Ultimately meaning we couldn't go. This has been happening on and off for the past 7 years. Normally it'll happen, I'll get let down because I've stupidly relied on him, we'll talk it out and we sail along fine until it happens a few months later. I've found my bottles of alcohol polished off without me knowing so I don't buy alcohol at all. He does, and I notice he has to have them all. He basically goes off the rails with alcohol and forgets about the impact it has on others. It makes me so mad meaning I'm going to be grumpy. I've tried to keep my cool but it's so hard when it happens. He then spends days feeling sorry for himself, not looking after himself and never doing any housework and I'm left with everything. All came to blows a few months ago when he said he was doing one thing and was actually at the pub early lunch meeting people. So I packed my bags and left the house to stay with friends. I told him I needed space away. He finally agreed with me that perhaps he needs help. He drinks when he is sad and when he is happy and has no stopping point. I've flagged this so many times I'm exhausted from it. I've tried not to push him into anything as I know it needs to come from him, he started following the alcoholics pathway or steps and was doing so well. Then started drinking again. Presently, he trying to find a balance, he has realized he has a problem stopping so is limiting himself. It has been working, but I really really can see him struggling to hold back and say no more. And here we are today. Basically, he has crushed me emotionally without realizing, meaning anything to do with alcohol and him is tainted for me. Every time drink is involved or he is around others drinking I basically lose my husband or I worry I will. I've caught him after a night out meeting mates in the pub having a pint at 11.30am. None of his family see it as an issue because they're all like it, mine are happy to help but don't want to get involved unless last resort and none of his friends realize how bad this is to me. Thing is I'm looking horrendous to everyone because I'm left feeling so low and upset, but nobody understands my situation and what I'm coping with. I'm so embarrassed and alone. Am I just being a nag or is this someone with a problem? And if it is a problem what do I do next as obviously I want to help.

Genuine drug problem? by

Hi I am new to this forum. My partner drinks heavily and uses cocaine weekly (mostly weekends only) . He has done so for our entire relationship of 4 years and probably for a couple of years before that too. We are reaching the stage where we are ready to buy a house, have children and settle down. But i do not want to have children with him until he has proved that he can either control his alcohol and cocaine use, or has stopped completely. The biggest problem with his use is that he will 'pop out' for 'half an hour' and not come home until the following day, there will be no communication in this time, leaving me to worry that something bad has happened to him. When we discuss this issue, he says that he has a drug problem and he cannot control himself or stop himself from taking cocaine once he has had a drink. I cannot relate to this at all and i cant help but think that this is his denial of self control and personal responsibility. Especially as he doesnt do it during the week (and surely he would if he had a drug problem?). .. Am i being unfair? Might he have a genuine drug problem? Or is he just using 'i have a problem' as an excuse? I know its impossible to answer this question but if anyone has had a similar experience please get in touch. Thank you

Withdrawal killing both of us by

Hi there, My fiance and I have been on a health kick following his diagnosis of gout, as a result of his drinking. I was so proud of him, he managed to ditch beer completely and moved to watering down his wine. After 20 years of drinking everything, every night. Back to the doctors for a checkup and they threw him in an ambulance with rapid heartbeat and a high pulse. I was gobsmacked, we'd been at it for over a month. I figured any withdrawal was well and truly over now. Apparently not. He'd always had an anxiety disorder which over the years, had gradually increased in intensity. The isolation for weeks on end as a result of him not being able to walk with the gout, the stress of the pain and removing the alcohol which masked it, hit full throttle. Long story short, he's now at home pretty heavily sedated. On top of my full time job, I'm now a full time carer, exhausted by endless panic attacks at all times of night and the need to do absolutely everything for him. I feel terribly guilty being so drained and quite obviously depressed. I can't talk to him about it and I'm scared how I'm meant to go on paying the bills without him at work. He's completely weak, it took him 8 days to be well enough to shower himself. I just feel that our life and our relationship, is at breaking point. Anyone been through something similar?

by Aallan

5 posts

Cannabis addiction, or just overreacting? by

I'm concerned about my girlfriend's cannabis use, but I've no idea how to raise it, and whether there's an actual element of addiction or I'm just overreacting. She smokes every night of the week when she's not working. Also, whenever we've had friends over she often sneaks out the back to have a smoke at some point in the evening. She doesn't smoke on evenings she's working, or when we're away on holiday either abroad or with other people. I've raised the addiction question with her before and she points to this as evidence that she doesn't need it. She suffers from complex mental health issues, and also argues when I've raised the issue that she needs it for her mental health, as it gives her headspace. I've mentioned to her before that her use concerns me, and that I'm not comfortable with it. A few months back she told me that she thought she was addicted, and had taken herself to a couple of NA meetings. Soon after she decided to stop going as she'd decided that she was not in the league of the actual addicts that were there. I get the feeling that the story above really answers the question I've asked, but I could do with some sort of confirmation one way or the other. Is there such thing as high-functioning addiction, and is that what this is?

Am I the one over reacting? by

Hi all. I need to know if I am over reacting to a drug situation. A relative regularly smokes weed and occasionally does coke.His mum doesn’t worry about it, in fact when he gets home from work after a hard day has been heard to encourage him to have a joint to relax.She disputes he does coke saying it was a one off in the past but it isn’t.He was sniffing it off her dining table when she was away visiting relatives.They are coming round for Xmas, if he smells of weed when he arrived st my door he’s not coming in and if I find he has smoked it anywhere on my property, he can go home. I don’t want the stuff near me or more importantly my grandkids. When he has his son at weekends he smokes it nearby to him and drives sometimes after smoking. The whole situation is disgusting, he needs help as I see a change in his mood but his mum is in denial ‘My little boy’. Am I over-reacting by setting rules that might cause trouble at Christmas and am I just the snob I’m accused of being for thinking it’s fundamentally wrong? He needs help as I fear it could spiral.


3 posts

When is it time to stop? by

Too cut the story short my mum is an alcoholic and after many years of heavy drinking that is the results of her poor mental heath she has landed herself very ill and in hospital. I'm 16 with 2 younger brothers, I also live with my granddad and dad my mum eventually got help through the GP in summer, she started horizon and they agreed that she needed detox away from home and rehab. When she went to detox on the 22nd November they said she was too ill to stay there as her liver had failed and she was extremely ill. She has know been in hospital for 7/ 8 weeks. We went to see her baring in mind she is a 2 hour drive away. We found her shouting and crying to the junior doctor saying she was discharging herself and she wasn't going to rehab. The nurses said to us that she needed a mental health assessment because she needed to be sectioned, however my mum is very manipulated and isn't stupid. Therefore, i'm concerned that she won't be sectioned and will discharge herself! So i'm on here to ask at what point to we as a family take a step and let her go. I don't want to enable her drinking as she will die and i don't want to be the reason she dies, but my mum has rights and at some point i'm going to have to take a step back because I have done everything and anything that I can do. Can someone please give me some advice i'm only 16 and I don't know what to do. This is such a struggle, crying every day I can never sleep. I have insomnia. I tell people its because of my ADHD but its really because i'm constantly thinking she will die. I've never had a mum and its all i want, I suffer everyday!! The abuse growing up the heartache and pain. I never talk about it to anyone because it's to painful. Growing up feeling no one loves me, neglected and suffering if anyone could offer help that would be great.


4 posts

Help please by

My son has been diagnosed with eupd and was taking cocaine earlier in the year to try and help. He saw a psychiatrist in may after a 5 month wait who diagnosed him and was told 'see you in a few months'. After a lot of arguing, self harm and a drug driving charge i finally thought we had got some improvement and that he was getting stronger. I have just found scales and 4 little bags in his room all empty so am assuming he's taking again. He's really struggled with Christmas, we always do since losing his little brother. I don't know what to do, he won't talk to me and denies everything. How can i get through to him? Please help