Practicing detachment

When I was living with someone in active addiction detachment was something I really struggled with, not separating the addict from the man I knew in recovery, that part I could do. Well I could hold onto the memories of the man in recovery and hope one day I would meet him again, but dealing with the man in active addiction was a lot harder.

Because of my codependent behaviours and thinking I still find it hard to detach from things that don’t necessarily have my name on it. One of the groups I have been a member of for a few years now, is changing ( as they do). We have had some strong personalities come into the room, and The ‘coziness’ of the group changed. Maybe I changed too but I struggled to let it go to let it evolve. Practicing detachment in this is difficult. Allowing our Higher Powers lead the way practicing our detachment is the only way to be able to recover from obsessiveness of people places and things.

Today I finally think I have detached with love and let the past stay there. I have been able to access information that is more or less from the horses mouth ( Facebook 😂) that my qualifier is definitely alive well and in recovery…I felt an enormous sense of well being and closure. It felt like a weight that had been sitting there had lifted. I felt a huge sense of gratitude that his HP had at last got him where he needs to be, interestingly the panic and dread I usually feel when his name comes up had gone, as early as just a few months ago when I thought I had seen him and hid, that feeling was no longer there. I was able to look at his profile and be happy that he had moved on and seemed happy. It didn’t upset me as I say it was a relief. I have no idea why he unblocked me it was by chance that ‘on this day’ popped up with his name in bold and curiosity got the better of me because he had unblocked me, but my HP guided me to where I am and this was part of my journey. It was time to detach myself from my past with love, I will be forever grateful for this journey and what I have learnt about addiction and indeed about myself but wanted to share even though the journey can be hard trust the program works because it does.



I spent years not reacting not responding just building up resentment – hardly healthy but didn’t know what else to do so did nothing. But the thing was i was doing something. I just wasn’t aware of it. 

I’ll be frank and honest ( I have to be!) as a child I learnt not to react not to be honest. One of my earliest memories was being totally honest and getting a slap. I probably reacted to that and cried but soon learnt that didn’t achieve anything. It didn’t stop or change what had happened but as a child it was the only way I knew how to express my hurt pain frustration. I remember crying a lot. I didn’t have the emotional vocabulary the self esteem to express myself any other way. I was a pretty sad kid. I was disliked in school by other kids because my parents taught their older brothers and sisters and then once I got to 11 went to the same school they taught in and was hated even more. We’re talking an age when punishment in school was often physical and it was the norm to  administer the cane, and often told of tales of what had happened in class and the consequences, so of course I was scared to ‘get in trouble’ in case I had some of the same. That threat whether real or imaginary hung over me all the time. It lead to mistrust lies and of course unhappiness. Even now I am thinking should I write this – but as an adult is not thro fear as such but because I dont want it to sound bad or negative. I don’t want to hurt someone’s feelings for something that happened a thousand years ago!! (40 I’m sometimes prone to exaggeration!) 

So the point is when I lived with someone in active addiction I sometimes reacted if it was something that was impacting on me, rarely responded but definitely was building up resentments! I learnt that reacting every time he wanted money only led to the next hour or so being badgered until I gave in, or going to the cash point to PROOVE there was no money in the account by actually trying to withdraw the money, which always led to something of mine being pawned or sold. So often just capitulated and if I had money gave it to him with out a fight because it was easier and I had already had a 13 hour day and couldn’t be arsed when the outcome would be the same – except I would be even more exhausted + £20 down! Of course this led to resentments building. But ultimately it was me that was responsible because I could have left him. Not so easy when you love someone to leave. I had the carrot of recovery dangled so of course I stayed – I had to see this thro! I had to be supportive but all the time resentments because it wasn’t happening, before he went to rehab I was resentful at the system at the drugs services for their stupid rules. I was resentful that I was paying £20+ a day to some dealer whilst I was working my ass off and had nothing for myself including food, so in fact was resentful at myself for doing this day in day out with nothing in return, but then I couldn’t see it. I can now and how all my resentments actually come back to how I reacted and not  responded to the situation I was in. I didn’t have my program for the first 2 years so wasn’t aware there was a better way to live, that I didn’t have to live in the crazy town of addiction. And respond the way I did. I certainly do not feel resentful to my HP or my program for me not being aware of them being there, because when  I found them I  still ignored what I needed to do but definitely don’t resent them. 

I like this journey of discovery – it’s hard, taking responsibility always is. But for me to progress I have to take a bit of pain now to negate the pain I have experienced, but better that than living in this deep seated pain for the rest of my life,  I have to face up to the denial get out of it and look at why these resentments have developed. I also know ( now) it’s my chance to hand them over I don’t have to challenge anyone for the pain I experienced even as I kid as an adult I can now learn to heal that inner child myself, to grow healthily – if it didn’t happen when I was younger it doesn’t matter – that only leads to resentment, so blame aside and move forward in the healing hands on my HP as I know she won’t let me down. 

Back to basics 

So I sat down with my work book and read it, really read it, I’m am so pleased my new sponsor asked me to start again! When I first did the steps I had completed I think it was all about ‘getting through them’. That somehow the quicker I got through them the quicker I would recover. Of course I didn’t get through them all that quickly to be honest, I found the questions difficult and the things being asked of me hard to do. I struggled for years to honestly find a HP I could believe in. Yesterday I read the questions differently. I understood what they meant, I understood what it was asking me to do. I’m not suggesting they are any more easier but I’m now at a place where they make sense. From this I have been able to see why it was so difficult before. The denial of so many things. Interestingly when I started another fellowships work book a few weeks ago I found the questions much easier, I thought maybe it was CoDA is all about being kind to ourselves, so I thought what was being asked was easier, but now I think it’s more about the fact I have listened. I have heard some things I don’t like recently, others opinions of me. But I listened. As our fellowship says take what is useful and leave the rest. But something’s were highlighted that I can work on. A lot of the negative behaviours highlighted are totally co-dependent behaviours. So I wasn’t really surprised to hear them even if it is never pleasant to experience it. With out sounding as though I’m justifying these behaviours I still feel at the moment that when I displayed them I actually had no idea – no idea of the impact on others or that they were in fact anything but normal. I thought that was who I was. It is who I am but with my programs I can learn a better way to live, and ask the god of my understanding to help me remove them. 

So for now as I restart my journey I am grateful for what I have learnt so far, and with the help and love of my fellowships know I can become a better person. 

Happy Endings

As part of my recovery I have joined another fellowship, I can’t get to face to face meetings but have access to a Skype group and an e-group. The e-group has a weekly topic, and people can share through the week. This week’s topic is Happy Endings. I’m not sure I have a ‘Happy Ending’ as such as yet, but I am starting to feel happy. Through one of my fellowship groups I have met some awesome people, these people get it, get me. We don’t have to even speak we can just be. They’ve been there lived it the same as me. That bond is hard to explain, but they will always hold a special place in my heart. So Happy Endings? Maybe be maybe not… anyway here’s my share,

Happy endings? I have thought about what to share on this topic, there was a time when I thought my life would never be happy. But that was when I was placing my happiness in the hands of others, if only he would do this or that, if only I didn’t have to do this or that for work, if only I didn’t have to do…. with the help of my HP and the fellowships I attend I understand that happiness is truly in my hands. I am not reliant on others for my happiness. If I don’t like to do something I don’t have to, because I think or feel I have to to keep others happy. Others happiness is not reliant on me or mine on them.
Yes of course I have to do things I might prefer not to, getting up at 6 to drive 150 miles because work require me to is not something I do with a ‘happy step’ but I have to be grateful that I have a job, and enough money to now enjoy things out of work time, a means to an ends!
I thought if only the addict in my life stopped using we would be happy but the relationship was toxic regardless of whether he was using or not.
I think for me it’s not so much happy endings but happy beginnings, the fellowship,the step work all contribute to me healing myself and becoming a better healthier person. I have started making some truly magical friends that understand me without me having to feel as if I have to ‘make them like me’. I can talk to them outside of group time, we have been down parallel paths they get it! They get me. We can hang out and share our war stories but not for sympathy, which I would have done in the past, but with honesty because we know we get it. If this is happiness I don’t want it to end, because for the first time in my life I feel accepted for me unjudged and not alone. I am happy.
Thank you for reading


Last night I was privileged to be invited to a surprise party in celebration of a ‘first year’ in recovery party. I can’t tell you how special it was. One year clean of drugs after battling with a disease that takes so many. To be in a group of recovering addicts it’s truly magical. The hope that radiates from them is tangible. I was more than lucky to be invited as I didn’t know the guy personally but know his wife. For us affected by another’s addiction this is what we dream of, we get it wrong we push them into recovery when they don’t want it, we make them feel like shit because we want them to stop using drugs – they want to stop but it’s not that simple. In the UK rehab and detox are not easily available on the NHS we don’t have the funds for private treatment centres – that’s for the rich and famous! But last night knowing that this individual had faced his demons and will have had the resolve to stay off the drugs for a whole year was most definitely worth celebrating. This morning I thank his HP for giving him the strength to do this, for his gorgeous wife who has stood by him, and arranged his special evening and my HP for guiding me to this life where I can celebrate the successes, but also be there for those who’s loved ones haven’t got there yet. We have to remember this is their journey when the time is right they will find recovery, we have to have faith. 

I feel truly blessed that I have been given access to this amazing community, and whilst I work in my recovery give thanks for all those that are also finding theirs. 

Bad week 

Just seem to be all over the place this week, I don’t know if it’s because of the work I’m doing on myself, and it’s bringing up too many feelings or if I’m just having a bad week in general. I don’t think I’m overthinking stuff, I am trying to be honest with myself and my HP, but I do feel let down by someone, and it’s having a negative impact on me….I know that I have no control  over another’s actions, but if  those actions are hurtful to me would that not give me reason to feel sad. I own the fact that because I have been basically ignored when asking for help has hurt me, it has reinforced my feelings of negative self worth, and I am fighting that, but thought by writing it down I might get a clearer understanding of what is going on for me. I’m loving my home group and feel it is very beneficial to me I am opening up and being honest, I even raised my concerns for my other group. Not concerns but I’m feeling very much not part of the group at the moment, I feel as though people are looking to me for experience strength and hope and right now it’s not happening.  I don’t have the strength right now to give. We have recently  had a lot of newcomers to my second group, this is great I’m grateful that their HP’s have brought them to recovery – but there are lots of personalities that I don’t feel comfortable with. I think I’m overwhelmed by trying to process what everyone is saying…when the group was smaller it was easier but with so many newcomers not listening to our principals it is actually making me feel very uncomfortable. If I sit there and say nothing nothing will change but this is not my group, it’s our group and if the majority don’t challenge cross talk or Interruptions is it my place to ☹️ I suppose if it is causing me upset then yes it is. Besides I’m caring for the group not caretaking we have the principals there to keep the group safe so maybe I need to voice that.  

End of year musings 

So here I am again! This Christmas was probably the best I have had in at least  4 years…maybe more. But of course the last 4 were taken up in the centre of addiction. Don’t look back only look forward don’t project or hover over a future that hasn’t come yet are phrases you hear in the fellowship phrases that have a lot of bearing when you live in addiction/with addiction wise words but hard to actually live up to when you’re in it. I don’t mind looking back – it’s useful to reflect. I like to look back not in the what could I have done differently way of looking back because that achieves nothing no one can erase the past or change it, but you can and do learn from it. I’m not even going to remind myself of what I did in the last 4 years at Christmas – I know! I know things that I won’t even put in this blog. Bad shit that happened but it’s in the past. I was powerless over the addict! In every sense. His choices were just that. My choices were just that. So this year mentally I was at a much better place. No expectations I didn’t measure up or down on anyone or anything. It happened. I limited myself on the drink and food I didn’t binge which I have done in the past. For comfort! It’s been a sad year on the celebrity front lost a good number of people this year, every night over Christmas we seemed to loose another. 4 in the space of 24 hours, although Ricky Harris didn’t make the news on the TV. Or at least not on the news I saw.  Anyway end of year reflections 

I came to believe that I was never going to change the addict. In fact more than that it was not my place to even try. I found the power maybe from my HP -( which someone once told me was myself and I doubted it but maybe he is right) to let go let god and release with love. Words and mantras that are easy to say but not so easy to put into practice. I saw yet again the the addict was not ready to change. That he was prepared after going thro the pain of coming off the drugs to start it all over again even tho he knew he was killing himself time and time again. That he hadn’t as yet made the decision to say enough is enough. But more importantly no matter what I did it wasn’t going to change anything. The only thing I could change was me. I know 1 year ago 2 years ago I said this but it was words this year I did it. I haven’t lost faith that it’s possible I know it’s possible I follow a fellow blogger seen how he has changed his life around he’s not a kid either but a grown man. But for my own sanity I jumped of the merry go round. Maybe I reached my rock bottom? Maybe I came to realise that I needed something more that I couldn’t be pulled into the downward spiral of someone else’s addiction yet again. Maybe I just realised just how hurtful it was to me and those around me? Nah what it was was I believed. I believed that I was powerless that my HP gave me the strength to say know what? You go ahead and do what you want, but don’t expect me to be part of it, one day you will find the way, but my hurt has to stop and only I can control that.  

So on that little reflection and in knowing everyday I am getting stronger and better I wish you all well. I hope your festivities were with out drama. And that you live in serenity and hope 

Just a reminder 😊

God, help me begin to take healthy risks.
Help me let go of my fear of failure, and help me let go of my fear of success.
Help me let go of my fear of fully living my life, and help me start experiencing all parts of this journey.
The Language of letting go – Melodie Beattie 

Today I am able to do things I couldn’t do even 6 months ago. Sometimes I make mistakes, but that’s ok. I do what is right for me at that moment. If it’s a mistake I can own it and learn from it, that is what my recovery is about. No more getting it right first time all the time! That isn’t learning. If my mistake hurts another then I have the the chance to make amends, not repeat that behaviour. I might make the same mistake over many times like a drug addict might relapse, we don’t mean to but sometimes we make the wrong choice we make mistakes. That is ok. I am a human being. I am not God, I am not a super being. I am not perfect! Progress not perfection can be my only aim. I might slip back in to negative harmful behaviours but if I recognise them as such instead of beating my self up about it Ican acknowledge them and strive to not repeat them again. My HP does not sit in judgement does not tell me I am right or wrong just wants me to be happy and in recovery. I am allowed to make mistakes. That feels good 😊 

The next few days….

I was devastated….I hurt so badly, it was so very hard for me to understand why he didn’t want to be with me any more. I tried hard to understand I really did. I think possibly one of the reasons I found it so hard was I rarely lie. I would never lie about my feelings towards some one. So when he said he loved me I had no reason not to believe it. When he said again and again that once he was in rehab and clean that we could have a good life together, I believed it. When he said he hated being on drugs and methadone I believed it. He had said all those things less than 4 weeks ago so why had he changed his mind. Guilt? For the way he treated me, for bullying me. Now he was sober was he feeling bad for all the awful things he had done? But I always told him I knew it was the drugs that made him do things, the bad things. The next few days were a bit of a blur… I think I went to work, but in the evening was drinking too much, I thought it helped but in reality just compounded my feelings of not wanting to live with out him. I felt as though I had been betrayed, that every thing that had happened was for what? What possible reason would there be for all of this last 2 years if this was the end of it? My life has been turned on its head. It’s bad enough when a relationship comes to an end, but for me having dealt with a world that I knew so little about, having put myself in risky situations that most normal people wouldn’t experience, because I knew it wouldn’t last for ever, and now nothing.
After work one day I went back to the flat, I still had some things there so thoughts had better remove them. Plus I thought it needed cleaning and the rubbish put out. I left the photos of us together. I thought I am not going to make this that easy for you, you might want to wipe me from your memory but I will remind you when you walk in that I did exist! I also wrote a long letter, saying I didn’t understand why. That I was heart broken, but respected that he didn’t want me to be in contact with him, but if he changed his mind to please contact me.
I left my keys and drove home.
So I came home. I text him to say I had taken my things and left my keys. He had said something about me staying in the flat whilst he was in rehab, but that would have just been wrong.
I can’t remember exactly when I got a Facebook message, but it was within a week of me seeing him. It was from someone I knew vaguely. She asked if I had seen his Facebook wall? I hadn’t. I had tried to be good and not look at what he was doing because I knew if he was behaving as if nothing had happened that would hurt me all the more. So I looked!
If I had felt pain before this was far worse….his profile photo his wall was covered in photos of him and another girl! So there was my answer. It wasn’t about rehab it was he had met someone else and the snake hadn’t had the decency to tell me! I couldn’t believe what I was seeing. I was furious. Of course he was feeling all shiny and new I knew how he was with me when we first met, all full of live and energy, everything an adventure! That bastard had shoved me out for her! Oh I was livid but the betrayal the loss the pain the hurt I can’t even start to explain it. The humiliation. Less than a week less than a week!!! How dare he. Of course it all made sense, he wanted me out for some bitch he met in there, some one that understood what he was going thro. Where were the staff in all of this? I thought they didn’t encourage relationships, when they were supposed to be working on themselves, where was his focus now? The fact that he didn’t even have the decency to tell me the truth. I posted on his wall for all to see how disgusted I was that he could do that to publicly humiliated me, after what my ex husband had done and how he said he would never do something like that, he had done exactly the same! ( my ex husband brought his new girlfriend into the pub I worked in one afternoon, I didn’t know he had a new girlfriend at the time) the next few hours were horrible, texting each other he saying to get over it to move on! To move on? Are you mental? It’s been less than a week! This is why you finished with me isn’t it? No we werent together when I finished with you. But she was waiting wasn’t she! I lost it completely I think I must have had some sort of mental melt down, I wanted to die the pain I was feeling was unbearable. Also at some stage she sent me an in box message she was evil! The things she said completely shattered my life. She said that why did I think someone like K wanted to be with someone like me, that he had only used me for money that he never loved me, he only hung around with me for what he could get. Why would he want to be with someone that didn’t dress very well didn’t bother about their appearance, was over weight, that needed plastic surgery and couldn’t even hang on to a druggie! That I needed to find an old age pensioner someone my own age, get some self respect and leave them alone to enjoy a happy life. The insults went on and on, but what hurt more was the fact that she had picked up on so many of my insecurities. Which meant he must have told her! The fact that I was older than him, that I said on more than one occasion sometimes I think you are only with me for my money, that before we had met I used to get Botox and fillers cos I like to look as nice as I can, but now couldn’t afford it. That I hated not being able to buy new clothes…..he had told her all of that and she was using it against me. She went on to say how lucky she was that now she had the good K and I had had to put up with the bad K ( didn’t she think I knew that).
I blocked her on FB and he blocked me, or at least she blocked me on his. He didn’t know how to, but that didn’t stop me from seeing his profile of course! I was torturing myself looking at them together but couldn’t stop myself.
I contacted his mum to see if she knew. She said she had seen it on FB. I was putting her in an awful situation but asked her to tell him I wanted to die, and when I did it was all his fault. She said she didn’t want to be a go between, ( of course) but I was so wrapped up in my pain I just said good to see I am such a good friend thanks for your support. I asked if rehab knew about this ‘new relationship’ and it was then she told me…..he left on the Thursday after he had seen you! WHAT!?! Apparently he had been caught with the phone and thrown out. There is more to it than that but for nOw that’s all I knew. I texted him and said I hope he was happy. He txt back yer I am get over it.
There was no compassion I felt so alone, and yes I really did want to die. I thought about how I could end it all. I signed myself off work for a week. But wasn’t sure if I would go back. I didn’t know if I would even be alive in a week. I suppose my HP did their thing! Someone I only knew from FB somehow persuaded me otherwise, my mum turned up so that also put a stop to any of my immediate plans, I was exhausted mentally and physically. I really didn’t care less about my life, but it would seem others did. I don’t know why. I was a mess. My life was a mess. Even a heroin addict didn’t want to be with me, what did that say about me? My sister said that was a measure of him not me, nice words but I didn’t believe it. It was very much a measure of me! I had given him everything I had to give and it still wasn’t enough..I WAS SICK. I was so distraught I couldn’t think straight. I felt as though if the last 2 years had been for nothing then what was the point? I felt foolish to believe that someone like him would love me, what was I thinking? But still couldn’t accept that he had been with me only for the money and life style. We met when he was clean! He promised me that when he was clean again we would have the life we wanted, I was in total denial, because facing up to the horrible truth was too much for me to accept and bear. Subconsciously I knew but couldn’t admit it. That my pride of wanting to be with this great looking ( and when not in addiction) fun loving full of life man had lead me to believe that he wanted to be with me too. That he found me attractive that he thought I was fun to be with that I was a good woman that he meant it when he said I was kind and loving and he loved being with me. If I accepted the truth that everything had been a lie that I had been taken in by his charm the lies that he had used me for the last 2 years, then my pride really would be dented! That I had so little about me that I couldn’t see it. That I was so wrapped up in my love for him that I was blinded by what was blatantly obvious to everyone else,no my friend I could not accept that as the truth. The pain I felt of course reflected all of that, and that was why I wanted to die. The shame I felt was overwhelming. But I continued to deny that he used me. I blamed her. She had taken my man. I blamed my illness I had become sucked into his addiction and took it on myself to solve the problems, to control the situation, and after being in control for so long to have to surrender that control to have it taken away from me gave me no comfort. I didn’t know that the only thing I could do was take control over my life, because it it the only thing I do have some control over. As I say I was ill. It would a few more months before I understood that. It’s funny before I met K I was never one to take control of a situation. I was a happy passenger of life, things happened and because I suppose I had so little self respect self worth, I let things happen. When you live with an addict that changes. I never liked to make choices or decisions about whether we should go somewhere. If he asked if we could go out at the weekend I would always ask where he wanted to go, thinking he might not like my choice. However when you live with an addict you do try to control everything. I tried to control him not getting into trouble from going on the rob, I had to make sure I had enough money to get us though the month, I wanted to know where he was how much he had used, I wanted to stop him from using by getting him into rehab, because I believed that was the right thing for him to do ( yes compounded by his affirmation of that) but it was what I wanted. You think you know best, because after all what would the addict know? Why would someone want to be addicted and live this life of misery? You do it out of love of course but also I misguided sense that you know best, what is right for him! So yes I had become very much in control.
Self pity blocks effective action
The more we indulge in it the more we feel that the answer to problems is a change in others or the world, not a change in us thus we become a hopeless case ( Nar anon blue book) and I had become very much a hopeless case, and would be for some time yet.