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Firefly

The addicted partner

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I have read a lot of partner posts on the forum and thought it might be helpful to chat about my experience as the addicted partner.

I have been an addict for all of my life, but my partner only became aware later on in our marriage and she has been very supportive since.

In the same way as I will have to take blood pressure tablets for the rest of my life I have to wake up each day and recognise I am an addict, and like taking my tablets have a routine to ensure that I am not triggered and so far it’s working..

My partner has however suffered much in the same way as many of the stories in the partner posts.

If I am feeling low then my partner recognises this, however this is where I see a similar thread running through other posts. The partner when asked if all is OK often gets “I’m fine..” and I am guilty as charged!

Why do I respond like this? Often, I feel it is routed in childhood where I was not allowed to show my feelings. “Boy’s don’t cry!”, “Don’t be such a baby”; so the initial reaction is a reaction to that, BUT it really is not helpful as the following example will indicate.

The other day I was worrying about my elderly parents and had bottled up feelings of helplessness for a particular situation. My partner asked me if I was OK and yes I responded with “I’m fine!” Clearly I was NOT, so my partner with nothing to go on thought I might have relapsed!

Luckily I was able to share later that day. But the damage had been done as it clearly worried my partner and brought back times when I had relapsed. But equally it brought up issues around being secretive and yes dishonesty, as I had lied about being OK!

Take note that our actions / statements have reactions which may not be as we intended.

Firefly

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Recognising the need to be honest both with yourself and your partner is not easy,  learning how to be vulnerable and admit that you are not fine is difficult and the intention is not to lie, you sound like you are growing in your awareness of how you need to change. Be kind to yourself in the process, whilst looking out for others

 

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