Addictive Relationships

I just finished a very short book (31 pages) about addictive relationships. I guess it is more of a pamphlet that I ordered on Amazon. It is called “Addictive Relationships: Why Love Goes Wrong in Recovery” by Terence T Gorski. I first heard about Terry Gorski while reading One Breath at a Time by Kevin Griffin. I now feel prepared to try to continue dating. I want to sum up some of the things I learned from Mr Gorski.
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Characteristics of Addictive Relationships:
-Magical or Unrealistic thinking: “My life will be better when I have a boyfriend.”
-Instant Gratification: “He must be gorgeous and turn me on as soon as we meet.”
-Dishonesty: “If I am honest, he will leave me.”
-Compulsive and Obsessive Overcontrol: obsessed with the relationship, it is the most important thing in your life
-Lack of Trust: Don’t try to change their nature.
-Alternating Doubts- I complain about him which then turns to self doubt.
-Isolation- Don’t want to share your partner with anyone else
-Repeating cycle of pain

He talked about how addictive relationships are built on risk-taking. I realize that was the start of almost all my relationships. I have always focused on having “interesting meeting stories” to entertain people and make myself seem more glamorous. “Oh we met while traveling in Argentina”. “He offered me a ride home cause I was so drunk and he SAVED ME”. “We met in boot camp.” “I bought furniture from him online and then asked him out.” All my affairs had the adrenaline kick of risk-taking. So many times I started to date someone and thought I could change them “for the better.”

His suggestions:
Do not have sex on the 1st date. He did not give a time frame of how long to wait. But I am thinking I am gonna self-impose at least 3 months.
Never have sex out of guilt of obligation. I know I have done this from feeling lack of self-worth.
Never have sex to change someone. I have done this. I have had sex thinking it would get the guy to like me more.
Don’t share your alcoholic past on the 1st, 2nd, or 3rd date. You will scare them away. But you must eventually be honest about it.
Build the relationship slowly. Yea I need help on this!
-Have realistic expectations.
-Establish and maintain personal growth first!

I need to stop focusing on finding a relationship and worrying about it. I am meeting a guy today for coffee. I will see how that goes but think I need to stop agreeing to squeeze in time to date. I have a lot of other things I can be doing. Dating should not be stressful.
relationship-and-love-addiction

Family and Genetics and Addiction

Whether a person decides to use alcohol or drugs is a choice, influenced by their environment–peers, family, and availability.  But, once a person uses alcohol or drugs, the risk of developing alcoholism or drug dependence is largely influenced by genetics.  Alcoholism and drug dependence are not moral issues, are not a matter of choice or a lack of willpower.  Plain and simple, some people’s bodies respond to the effects of alcohol and drugs differently.

Family History and Genetics

I can still cry on Prozac

One reason I hated Prozac when I was on it 13 years ago is because it numbed me so much, I couldn’t cry. I remember a coworker died and I did not feel sad. Now I think it is because I just did not like her. But today I can not stop crying. I found out my last boyfriend, who I am still in love with, has started a heroin addiction.

I feel helpless. I feel guilty. I feel useless. I want to do something. I wish I knew what I could do. Or that there was something I could do. I know it is not my fault and most likely I would not have been able to prevent this. But I still feel if he and I stayed together, he would not have picked up the needle. If I did not get so drunk and jealous last time we were together, maybe we would have kept talking. I am physically and now emotional distant from him. I can not help but worry now. His new girlfriend is the reason he started using. I hate this woman now and that has nothing to do with jealousy.

I did leave a card telling my feelings for him and how I want him to get cleaned. I want him to get help. I gave it to a mutual friend to pass on. I doubt he will call me. But I needed to get the message to him.

I am glad I am on Prozac now. Not sure what this news would do to me. I might have spiraled down into deep depression. I am also glad to be sober to deal with these feelings.
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Mistake 251- When I first met my friend that introduced me to this last boyfriend, we were drunk at a club. We danced and made out. I drove him home with me. I drove drunk 20 miles while he kissed and played with me. He said he was impressed I kept the car from swerving. I am impressed we survived the drive. He laughs about it now but I think about it and it makes me grateful to be sober.

Impermanence

I am in a new city.  New things to see.  It is a new day.  And I feel better than my last post. 

I also slept better.

I was staying in a hostel for two nights.  And while I love the atmosphere in hostels,  maybe I am getting too old for sleeping in dorm rooms.  It was not as if many of the other young travelers were trying to chat with me.  (Even though I could probably give them a lot of travel advice about other parts of the world! ) I booked a hotel for my two nights in this city because the hostels were all up a hill and I have a very heavy bag.  This hotel is right next to the train station.  I went to sleep,  did not set the alarm,  and woke up at 8 am feeling wonderful!

I was listening to music on my iPod as I got ready.  Some Tibetan Buddhist prayers came on.  I downloaded them after my trip to Nepal last year.  I listened to the chant “om mani padme hum.” I really need to make a blog post one day devoted to that prayer. It basically means “jewel in the lotus” and represents that we can overcome anything.  (At least that is what I take from it.) But lotuses are beautiful flowers that can grow out of mud and, literally,  shit. They show that something wonderful can come from the worst. A jewel in the lotus is the shine that develops from that beauty.

So that chant came on and made me smile.  It also made me think of a Buddhist quote I saw on a recovery page on Facebook last night. “Nothing is permanent.” Including my addiction. Including my sadness.

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Mistake 196- I was really close friends with a gay guy. He had an old military friend visiting him. His friend was very hot. My friend told me not to hit on his hot friend. But we went to an afterhours club. My gay friend had to leave but his hot friend insisted on staying. I got too drunk to drive so the hot guy offered to drive my car for me. We ended up having sex in the car in the parking lot before he drove me home.

We stayed in touch and he even came to visit me once. But we kept it a secret. Our gay friend was mad when he found out. He said I betrayed him. I am not sure if he was jealous or why he was so upset. But either reason, a friend should not do that to a friend.

Robin Williams- Rehab

Robin Williams returns to rehab.

“It’s [addiction] — not caused by anything, it’s just there,” he said in a 2006 interview. “It waits. It lays in wait for the time when you think, ‘It’s fine now, I’m OK.’ Then, the next thing you know, it’s not OK. Then you realize, ‘Where am I? I didn’t realize I was in Cleveland.'”He admitted he once thought he could handle addiction on his own.

“But you can’t. That’s the bottom line,” he said. “You really think you can, then you realize, I need help, and that’s the word … It’s hard admitting it, then once you’ve done that, it’s real easy.”

 

Mistake 161- This is sort of a mix of addictions. I started to watch Breaking Bad when the show was about to end. I would binge watch it on my nights off. But one morning, I got home from work and started to watch it at 8am. I also started drinking beers. So I am not sure if it was addiction to the show or the 8 beers I had for breakfast, but I stayed up watching it until 2pm. Then I had to get some sleep before working at 7pm. I remember justifying it as being like going to a bar until 2am before working the next day.

School vs Sobriety

Now I understand! All those times my friends went back to school and did not have much time for a social life, I understand! When they said “I have to study” or “I have a paper to write”, I know why they weren’t complete in an hour or so. This stuff takes concentration and time! It is a struggle. Especially trying to do everything else in life and school work.

It reminds me of my sobriety. Takes time and not always easy.

I am happy I have started this journey back to school much like I am happy I have started the journey to sobriety.  But I also see how people might not comprehend what an effort this is. I have to be disciplined in both my studies and sobriety. I have to just say no to a beer or a movie. I need to move away from people trying to converse while I am trying to read much like I need to move away from someone who keeps offering me booze.

Both will have good outcomes.
Damn it… I now want a sobriety report card. I have gotten A’s for 4 months. I want the 6 month sobriety honor roll!

Mistake 141- Yesterday I mentioned I promised the guy I was staying with I would not have drunk sex in his house anymore. Well another night, I thought I was alone. I thought the guy that lived there was at work. I invited a male friend over late while I was drunk. We had sex on the couch. After he left, I heard the toilet flush upstairs. The guy was not at work. He was sleeping but woke up to hearing sex noises downstairs.

We never mentioned it. I broke my promise. I moved out of there soon because I was able to move back home and start my job. I somehow convinced the alcohol counselor that I did not have a drinking problem so she gave me the green light to work. I never talked to the guy that owned that house again.

Pompous Octopus

I had a friend that made a post on Facebook about the 10 year anniversary of his company. I would not have even noticed it if he did not tag me in it. I turned off following his profile because of his narcissism. I was also very annoyed with the last time we met up.

I had to visit his city last autumn. I was on a “drinking break” but not attempting sobriety yet. I asked if I could stay with him. He told me his roommate might be having someone stay on the couch but I am welcomed to share his bed. I saw no problem with that arrangement. We have known each other a long time and used to have casual sex back in the day. But that was ten years ago. I did not want to have sex with him on this visit or ever again. In fact, I never planned to have sex with him back in the day. It was always drunk sex. I used to always describe him as pompous but a fun drinking buddy. Unfortunately, meeting at the pub usually lead to waking up with him in my bed. I always regretted it but kept drinking with him.

During this last visit, we meet up at a bar. He was slightly drunk. He introduced me to some other drunk friends. I managed to drink my diet Cokes and felt proud I was not drinking beers with them. I told everyone I was not drinking for 2 months to prove to myself I could do it. (These past 106 sober days would have seemed impossible at that time.) But I was tired so we eventually said farewell to his bar buddies (that he just met) and I followed him to his place in my rental car. He insisted he was okay to drive and he got home fine. We walked into his apartment and his roommate was sitting on the couch. She was alone. She did not have someone staying on the couch like he said. That should have been a warning flag. After brief introduction, I went to the bedroom and to the bed that I was to share to sleep.

I did not sleep well that night. He spent the whole night touching me. He kept his hand on my butt or trying to wrap his arms around me.THANK GOD I was sober. I dozed a little but was unable to completely sleep because I was not sure where his hands would go next. I should have said something but I was tired. I should have got up and left but I did not have money for a hotel. I did not want to upset him but I was mad. Did he make up that story about his roommate’s friend on the couch to get me into his bed?

I woke up the morning and left for my meeting. I got to the meeting early so I could nap in the car in the parking lot. After my meeting, I texted my ex-boyfriend to see if I could stay with him that night. I should have stayed with him in the first place but I was worried that would be too hard. I still had feelings for him. I thought it would be easier to stay with the friend with the roaming hands. But I did not want to fight Mr Octopus again. The Ex welcomed me into his place and I gave some excuse to Pompous Octopus. I have not seen him since.

actual octopus I saw diving in Thailand

actual octopus I saw diving in Thailand

In this tag on Facebook, he commented that summer he started his company, he refers to as the “Summer of Sin”. He credited me and another friend as the reasons. I felt nauseous. I do not want to be memorialized by him for intoxicated intercourse. I do not want to be memorialized for sex I can not remember. Did we really have that much drunk sex for him to think about me when thinking of a whole summer? It makes me sick and sad. I want to be known for my accomplishments and personality. Not my blackouts and debauchery.

I met up with Pompous Octopus in 2008 in another city. It was Christmas weekend. I had some friends staying with me and we took two cars to a bar near him. It was a thirty minute drive. We all had fun. I did not drink much because I was driving. (It was still close enough after my 2nd DUI for me to be a responsible driver.) I invited Pompous to come to Christmas dinner with us the next night at a friend’s house. I explained there would be people from all over the world at the dinner. He accepted the invitation and asked about coming back to my place with us that night. Since my living was full of my friends, I told him he could share my bed. Then he had roaming hands that night. I was mad because I spent the whole evening talking about my new boyfriend. He knew I was dating someone but still thought he had a chance with me. The next morning, he asked if I could give him a ride to his place, an hour away, so he could change his clothes. Once we got there, he changed his mind and said he was going to skip dinner and stay home. Again, I was mad. He never wanted to join us for dinner. He just wanted to get in my bed. He never offered me gas money either.

Thinking back on all of this, I wonder why I stay friends with him. Why do I stay friends with a lot of people?

Mistake # 106- All and any times I had drunk sex with him. I was not attracted to him when sober. We became friends because we both like to get drunk and lived near each other. I do not blame him for the drunk sex. I just do not know why I kept hanging out with a guy when I kept repeating the same regrets.