Diamond to Heartsick

By Diamond | May 05, 2016

Dear Diamond,

It’s so hard for me to write this because I haven’t yet said this out loud to anyone. I’m suspecting that my husband has gotten hooked on painkillers. I’m terrified. He is out of town often while we are expanding our business in another state. We have a high-end business and I can’t believe that this would or could be happening to us. Last week I found some Oxycodone that he’s gotten somehow and I saw that he had on a Fentanyl pain patch. He doesn’t think I saw it, but I did.

Many years ago before I knew him, he used heroin and had stopped, but now that he's under a lot of pressure from our business, I know he’s back on it. We have two wonderful teenage daughters. I can’t bear the thought of them finding this out about their dad and I dread dealing with it. There is so much pressure with starting this new expansion and we can’t take any time off from the business. We are prosperous and college-educated professionals. No one would ever suspect this, at least I hope not. I never, ever thought that this could happen in my family. I am side-swiped and absolutely terrified. The thought of losing him sickens me. I am filled with dread.

Heartsick

Dear Heartsick,

Even though you may be worried about pushing him away, you must confront your husband about this with love and compassion. Shine the light on your fears for him.

Put both of your feet in the path of truth; you have no choice, Heartsick, you have no choice. Remember that mantra; self-doubt cannot serve you or be your master anymore.

He’s going to feel cornered and will want to bring the confrontation to an end. He may get mad and tell you that you have nothing to worry about. That’s denial— the dangerous part of addiction.

You can perhaps relate to this piece; if you continue with your denial, even with all the signs put in your path, life for you, your husband and your beautiful children will spiral out of control.

Diamond can’t predict what will happen when you do confront him, but I can tell you what will happen if you don’t. Your husband will lose everything he loves and he will die. If your husband was sick with disease, you wouldn’t wait to get him treatment. You wouldn’t hesitate even an hour.

Stop hoping that you are wrong about your hunches on this. You have seen the bottles. You have seen the patch. You see what is right in front of you. It is time for you to be stronger than the addiction by confronting it head on. Doing this will empower you and you will save the life of this man you love.

Please don’t be afraid to reach out to the others who have walked this road before you. They understand. Here are some places to turn. These sites give the locations for help in your area:

Nar-Anon (nar-anon.org): An offshoot of Al-Anon designed to help relatives and friends of addicts.

Narcotics Anonymous: 1-800-974-0062.

Families Anonymous (familiesanonymous.org): A 12-step fellowship program of families of addicts.

Children of Addicts (mdjunction.com/children-of-addicts): An online support group designed to help children discuss and deal with the challenges of an addicted parent.

Al-Anon (al-anon.org): A peer support group with meetings in more than 130 countries to help families primarily affected by alcohol addiction.

There are times when it’s necessary to value the person over your relationship with them – and this is one of those times. Years ago when one of the baby diamonds was in a rebellious, horrible, angry state of teenage mind, he told me he hated me. With wise advice from a mentor, and because we knew that the baby diamond was in a precarious stage of development, I responded — “I’ll get over it.”

You will get over the anger your husband will have, after all, you love him so much that you are willing to risk it with an intervention.

Reach out to the others who have walked this walk. They will guide you as to what to do right now. Right now. Right now. Right now.

With grace and peace,

Diamond

Some feedback from a reader about last week's column:

This one hits close to home. When I went to UMaine, I had loans and had to work a part-time job the whole time. I was there with kids that had not even well-to-do parents, but just upper middle-class, who didn't have to juggle work with their school work. You touched on the issue of judging each other by class, which is right on.

The other piece of that equation is that you can very easily get a taste for a lifestyle you can't afford. When you visit those friends and see how they live, even modestly better, it's hard to go back to a tougher reality. I can remember actually being mad at my parents for not being wealthier, which is bonkers, but it's the result of exposure to something just out of reach. It can be very easy for young people to lose their heads at that time and it's a dangerous time for making big life decisions.

Maybe the best advice for young people, not even those who are in college yet, but younger, is to figure out who they are and what they value that is at the core under all the rest of it ... if you were dropped penniless in a city somewhere tomorrow, who are you? Once you know that, you can deal with the rest of it. My parents likely taught me that lesson, but they didn't know what I was going through and I wasn't in a place to hear it yet.

Opportunities for singles

Readers have written to Dear Diamond because they want to meet someone. Each week Diamond will post one event that’s appropriate for single folks.

Volunteers are needed for the 2016 Nequasset alewife count

From now through early June, volunteers are needed every day to count the fish in the Bath area that successfully make it into Nequasset Lake to spawn. Sign up to count and learn how at http://kennebecestuary.org/2016-nequasset-fish-count. contact Ruth Indrick at the Kennebec Estuary Land Trust, 442-8400.

Advice appearing in Dear Diamond is for entertainment only and does not reflect the views of Courier Publications or its editorial boards. This column is not intended to replace the services of medical, financial or legal professionals.

Contact Dear Diamond:

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Snail mail: 91 Camden St., Suite 403, Rockland, ME 04841

Email: deardiamond@courierpublicationsllc.com

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