Wow, Welcome to Medhelp and the Living with an Addict Community. Sometimes you can change the number of kids, or the years clean, to seem more anonymous. the answers are mostly the same regardless of exact numbers. so if you feel more comfortable being more anonymous to your husband, you might erase this post, or let it die down , with no comments maybe change your name to 11 years clean , and start again. Just a thought. Please consider this, though, what you've written here, how would that hurt your relationship exactly? if he knew you were reaching out? what would he do to you ?
When you say that it's ruing your family, can you give an idea of how unmanageable his using has become, ? how it' s affecting the kids?
How old are your kids, are they aware that their daddy is using a drug ? and acting out in a way that shows them he's not sober ?
First of all, let me congratulate you on your 8 years. especially the last one with a using husband, many would not have had the strength to deal with that and keep strong. Therein lies the problem. His using could have put you off your sobriety and he knows that and he's still doing it. Was he also a recovering addict or is this something new for him? You mentioned that he helped to get you clean. Was he 100% clean when he was helping you out ? did he use had drugs and switch to weed and alcohol while he was helping you? i'm wondering if he's always used something and never really been clean and sober himself. So like a bomb ticking, waiting these 7 years to go off at any time (with no traditional rehab support).. or, yea, is this new for him?
Children that have a parent or two, that are clean and sober can benefit by their parents past addictions. They can learn how to live a clean and sober life, and also see how an addict supports their recovery by getting support from the community. However, kids that have an addict in the home are learning that it's acceptable to live in a co dependent relationship. All your kids would then be at risk of getting into their own co dependent relationships, starting right our of high school and their first loves. Instead of your 13 year old daughter rejecting the kid that's also grown up with addiction, being involved in drugs instead of involved in making his high school years benefit him and prepare him for his college years. It all boils down to that one analogy. I'm hoping your kids are young enough to can stop this from happening.
A crack head has no business as the head of the family. Even if he's working and bringing in a paycheck, it would benefit your kids more to go on social assistance, get your husband to pay child support if he can, and raise your kids in a clean and sober home. They would get a better start that to see mom dealing with a codependent relationship.
I'm not sure what help if any you got to quit. I had the same drug habits as you, plus i was a raging alcoholic, and i got sober through rehab. and extended therapy, blood testing, etc. My husband and i both got clean in '99. When we did , we had a plan that if either of us relapsed, we'd have to go to a 90 day Relapse Prevention rehab. When my husband relapsed due to the stress of my getting an injury (back), he got hooked on oxy's and had a psychotic break, so i had to have him committed to the Hospital's Psychiatric ward for 3 weeks, to go on medication for schitzophrenia, and then he went to the 90 day rehab, and he's been clean and sober since. We also made a pact, that if we used, we would be honest about it. (which he was pretty early on). And the primary reason why we made these pacts, was for our kids. I had one son and he had a daughter from a previous marriage that we HAD TO BE TRUE TO. regardless of any relapse. or any drug . No excuses. We made a pact to raise our kids knowing that drugs were not acceptable , for fear of them growing up and following our footsteps.
Do you have family support, or anyone in the program of AA or NA that you're friends with ? do you have clean and sober friends (or friends that handle their alcohol , of course). ? Do you have an Addictions Therapist?
My advice, not knowing too much more, would be to get a hold of an Addictions therapist, and start to arrange for an Intervention, where you support your husband only if he's in recovery. Otherwise, i truly think you and the kids should remove him from your place, and make him get into rehab where he can start to be drug tested. I wouldn't let him come in and act "high" in front of the kids . Let him look like Mr. Fund and games, while you look like the serious one. There's a chance that your kids might even gravitate to him when hes high. and you don't want that.
Can you tell us how his using is "ruining" the family exactly?
Incidentally, our kids are 28 years old now. Both are in college. My son got his BA and is now in a 3 years Construction Engineering program and my step daughter is in a 3 year college program. Being clean and sober for our kids had the desired effect. Though we could not shield them from our use at time when they were younger, it was not accepted by others in our family, and we were removed from them when we were using, so they both grew up knowing that co dependent relationships, or accepting bad behavior was not acceptable when raising a family. They learned how to believe in living clean and sober when they were young and doing it themselves instead of waiting until they were old enough to try it themselves it had been drilled into them that drug use was unacceptable. It worked. Neither of them abuse alcohol or drugs are are both successful. That would not have been the case if we were able to live with them while using.
I should also add that i was without custody of my son for longer than i care to admit, but, the fact is that his needs were met without me while i found my bottom and got help. Those are the sacrifices an addict must make for their children, before they are able to get clean and sober. Thank God the children have you while he goes out and get's the help he needs.
Hello and thank you for all your advice. I don't think my husband would do any physical harm to me but he has a way of being mad and he knows how to hold a grudge. Whenever he knows he is in the wrong he likes to make it my fault instead of admitting he is wrong. I have no idea how long he has been using, I always thought it was weed and beer. I know he's been smoking crack for at least 2 years. When I sit back and think about all the behaviors he has displayed, I get mad at myself for not noticing it before. My children are 15, 9, 7, 5 and 2. They don't know anything and he's really open about it to me, every since I told him I would leave if he wasn't honest with me. He's trying to quit, but I know it's not an overnight thing. I just want to help him, I am actually going to school for substance abuse counseling, but I just started so I haven't gotten too far into the psychology part of it yet. the money he spends on it is ridiculous, we don't make a lot of money, but we are always behind on bills, we are never able to do normal parenting things with or for the children, and whenever we go somewhere, it's for his benefit and he never wants to leave. We don't take our kids to a crackhouse or nothing but he gets high with his uncle and they always leave and stuck waiting for him so we can go home. I don't know what to do anymore. I just want to help him without enabling him.
Well, I think you'll learn (thankfully) in school, that by allowing him to stay in the relationship and use crack, like business as usual, bringing the kids out and imbibing in crack cocaine use, and having them wait while he does, , along with "never doing normal things for the kids" you are currently enabling him big time. You help out an addict by making it so they are not allowed to be near the children while they are still using crack cocaine. I think you must know this on some level, from reading, before you got into going to school for a Substance Abuse Counselor.The first thing a loved one needs to do is to go and talk to an Addiction's Therapist and get them onboard for Intervention. An intervention like the one they have on tv. You have a 15 year old and a 9 year old. I think that they know their dad has a substance abuse issue. Kids are alot brighter than we sometimes allow for. I think if you want to help, you're going to have to do the hard thing and demand that he go into rehab and be drug tested for a good year or so afterward, in order for him to have access to his children That's the norm for dealing with a person addicted to crack cocaine. I was a crack head for years. and have been clean since '99.
I also got clean and sober because my son was looked after by family members until i got clean and sober and fit to be his custodial parent.
In many cases, the fact that our kids are held from us, gives us the strength and resolve to deal with an issue like crack cocaine addiction. It did for me, It did for my husband, It does for addicts that are in treatment. They go to treatment because they have no choice if they want to be in their children's lives. I get that it will be hard for you to raise your kids, while doing an Intervention, do you have family? Could you support yourself while he's away at rehab and afterward until he proves he's clean for awhile? That's what you'll learn if you ask an Addiction's Therapist. What do you tell your kids while you're all waiting for Dad whiles he's doing crack? Do you really think they have no idea Dad has a problem?