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Husband addicted, please help.
Husband addicted, please help.
My husband has been taking a combination of lortab/tramadol off and on for about 10 years. More on than off. He has relapsed so many times. I am frustrated beyond belief, and I have told him I cannot and will not live like this anymore. We have two children, and I have to look out for their best interest. He is edgy and ill all the time and just not a pleasure to be around. Not to mention the money he spends. He promised this time would be different. He weaned himself down to three tramadol and one 10 Lortab a day. I thought we were on the right track only to find out he had increased to 3 Lortabs a day. I am concerned now about his health because he has broken out in a head to toe rash and has a terrible itch. I have read that tramadol can cause this type of reaction when taken over a long period of time. Does anyone have any experience with this? I don't know what to do. Rehab is not an option because we cannot be without his income. Does anyone have any advice for me on how to deal with this or how to help him? I don't want to lose my marriage, but I am at the end of my rope here. He says that I don't understand, and to some degree I realize that. But something has to give here. Thank you for any advice.
First of all, you need some support and guidance through this situation - and the best place for you to turn is to Naranon or Alanon. These are 12-step groups for those who have loved ones struggling with addiction. To find a local meeting:
Once a person has crossed over from recreational use to abuse and addiction, his attempts to "control" his use is pretty much a waste of time. Once we are addicted, "control" is an illusion. It may last a short while, but before long, we're back to more and more of the drugs. At this point, most likely, the answer to your husband's situation is complete abstinence. Anything short of that will lead him back to more drugs.
You can't force him to get help, but you can create a homelife that makes it very difficult for him to continue. This is through "tough love" - and that's a concept you can learn more about through Alanon or Naranon. Basically, you stop any behavior that enables him to continue to use - and set boundaries for what you will and will not accept. But you have to set a "bottom line" - that is, what you'll do if he continues to abuse drugs. And you MUST follow through with this bottom line.
The only way an addict reaches that place where he is willing to seek out help, is when he is allowed to feel the full consequences of his drug use. It may mean the loss of a job, the loss of a marriage, legal problems; it's different for different people. But as long as he has a roof over his head, food and a family around him, he isn't feeling the consequences of his drug addiction.
Getting him help may mean a dramatic change in your home. Just pleading with him to stop isn't changing anything. I hope you can get to some meetings, and learn the tools you need to deal with this situation.