Relapses; How to get out of the cycle of Pain
When your addict husband relapses
So your spouse is in treatment. He does good for a while. You start to feel like there is progress and WAM you find porn in the truck. So what do you do? How can you get out of the cycle of pain? I have an answer but you probably won’t like it.
You are stronger than you think
You are stronger than you think. When your spouse does the cycle you do NOT have to get on with them. Just because they are sober 30 60 or 90 days doesn’t mean you have to re engage immediately. You are allowed to ask for more time and healing before giving your heart back.
We want Intimacy
I know we want intimacy. But giving it to someone who can’t handle it with the love and care it deserves isn’t going to help. You are allowed to have someone earn back the right to be in your heart.
Is this easy? No but there are ways to make it easier.
You need to focus on you and your healing for at least a year. This isn’t saying if your spouse is sober for 9 months you can’t give them the beginnings of working together but you need to know your heart is still the priority. You have to step back emotionally. There needs to be clear boundaries that you do not cross so you have the ability to know you are safe no matter what.
You need to plan for yourself financially. This is not that you are planning on leaving. This doesn’t mean you will hold it over your spouse’s head or that they can use it to shame you. You need to put away money because THEY made choices to break the foundation of your relationship. They may get upset about this, I have my clients write out a letter with me for them. It gives a clear understanding of what why and how long.
You need your spouse to understand that the reason this is happening is because you are emotionally detaching to heal from the abuse and pain that is involved. Again my clients and I come up with a letter, focusing on wording it in a non judgemental non threatening way so they understand and don’t get angry. This is not easy but your spouse has to understand that this is for healing and not to punish. Of course we may WANT to say mean things depending on how we are feeling at the time but it won’t get us anywhere. We need to be the adult because they aren’t able.
Remember you do not have to make a decision right this minute. You have as much time as you need to decide what you want to do. If you are to the point that you don’t know what to do anymore, you can take a step back and evaluate how you feel. I use pro and con lists with my client and a few other option gauges to help figure out what is really wanted.
No one else’s opinion matters. You are not living your life for them. They are not in your emotional shoes. It is ok to do what you need for yourself and anyone directly involved. If that means your parents are mad that you stay or don’t stay, it is ok. That is an issue inside of them, not you. You do not control their feelings any more than they control yours.
To do something different you have to do something different
You only have this lifetime. If you want something different, you have to make the choice to do something different. It may be hard but things that are easy are not as satisfying or as impactful as those you have to work for.