Loving an Addict (Part 1)

For the past two years I’ve though about writing this, but could never find the right words to start. September is National Recovery Month and seeing the multitude of recovery stories on social media, has given me the frame of mind to start.

We all know someone with addiction whether it is cigarettes, alcohol, owning too many shoes, or eating more than you should. Most addictions are seemingly harmless so people overlook them as addiction, but when it involves heroine, coke, crack, or any hard drug people are more likely to start to judge. I was one of those people that judged because to me any addict was a disgusting human who didn’t care about anyone else or even themselves. I would later learn that my opinion was so far from the truth.

I was first introduced to addiction when I was fifteen. My best friend had developed a habit of taking Ecstasy. At the time I was naive to what addiction was, but I knew she had a real problem. We’d make plans to hang out and have a sleep over and she would show up late coming down from her high. “I took 2 triple stacks today, threw up everywhere, and rolled so hard. I’m exhausted.” She’d tell me as she climbed into bed to go to sleep. This was a regular weekend thing for us. My best friend, who I needed to talk to about life, boys, family, and anything else, couldn’t give me one night of her time. She’d fall asleep and when I woke up she’d already be gone to hang out with her other friends again to get high. I was hurt, worried, and didn’t understand why she couldn’t just hang out with me without the drugs. I told her numerous I was worried and that I didn’t like it and she didn’t seem to care. I had, had enough. The last day she left my house I woke up and messaged her on Myspace telling her I was tired of worrying and if she wasn’t going to stop I couldn’t be friends with her. That was the hardest thing I had ever done.

After 6 months of not speaking to my best friend my father came to me and said they had talked and she hadn’t taken ecstasy in about a month. I was happy our mutual friends and my father kept in touch with her at the time that I couldn’t. I needed to know she was okay even if we weren’t speaking. A few days later we talked and she apologized. She got the help she needed and our friendship is stronger than ever. That year was the hardest year of my life and I was so glad it was over. Without even realizing it I had my first encounter loving an addict. I never thought it could get worse.

Years went by and my knowledge of addiction grew as friends dabbled in different pills and alcohol. I hated it. I judged them. I had formed an uneducated opinion about all addicts. They we’re liars, thieves, dirty, and I wanted nothing to do with them. That was, until I fell in love with one.

To be continued…