This Is No Way to Live.

My wife became addicted to prescription painkillers several years ago, and four years ago I gathered members of our family and performed an intervention. Her addiction had gotten out of control, to the point where she was endangering the lives of herself and our four small children. After the intervention I arranged for her to enter a rehab facility. She stayed for only a few days, returning home after promising to continue after care with a psychiatrist and therapy group. She saw the psychiatrist only a few times, and never contacted the therapy group. Since that time, she has stayed off of the painkillers almost totally - the exception being when she was injured in an accident and was given a small, no-refill prescription from an unsuspecting doctor. In the last four years, though, she has become increasingly isolated from me and her friends and family. She has refused to discuss the addiction or its effects on her or those around her - specifically myself and our children, and what we were forced to deal with over the course of the two years prior. In that time she has also become more hostile and extremely cold to me. She feals that any attempt on my part to deal with the issue is only a desire to hurt her and force her to relive something that she can't deal with. It didn't take me long to realize that any healing I needed to do would have to be done on my own. I had sought the help of a therapist that specializes in addiction and depression during the process of confronting her drug abuse, but my wife was quick to refuse my pleas to meet with this therapist. I have met independently with this therapist on a non-regular basis since then, just to help myself deal with the issues I've been confronted with surrounding my wife's drug abuse and subsequent depression. My wife's main focus is to act as if nothing is wrong, that I have no reason at all to be hurt or angry. When she came out of rehab, the one thing she said was that she fealt like she had "screwed everything up." I told her that was far from true, that she had a problem, but we were making it better. In the four years since that statement, things have changed to the point that if she said that again, I would agree with her. I love my wife very much, but she threw our lives into chaos. Endangering the lives of our children and herself and then just walked away from it without any explaination - expecting me else to just forget that it happened. That whatever pain I had experienced was my problem and she shouldn't be bothered. I've told her that, in many ways, she never came back from rehab. I believe that she resents me for the humiliation of the intervention and rehab - but I don't think she has dealt with the events enough to even realize that, and it's eating away at her and making it worse. I don't think she's lying to me about not being angry with me - I think she's so busy fooling herself that she's OK ( that she, in fact, didn't really do anything wrong) that she doesn't realize a lot of what she's doing. She's lying to herself to avoid having to deal with reality. As a result, I am SO lonely. I feal like a single parent. After dinner my wife immediately gets into bed, sometimes while it is still broad daylight. The sad thing is that, when this happens, the stress level goes down significantly, and I end up spending the evening alone with the kids. I will not end this marriage, and have told her so repeatedly. I am concentrating on being the best father I can and hoping that I can find a way to reach her and help her. But in her mind, I'm the one who needs help. This is no way to live.
lonelyhusband lonelyhusband
46-50, M
2 Responses May 7, 2007

I'm sorry. I hope she opens up and that you two can find peace and happiness.

When are you going to stop making excuses for her. Find a real woman, who treats you good. But first ask her for sole custody of the kids.