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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
First, I'm really happy to have found this forum. Going through my separation has been amazingly difficult but the people on here seem so compassionate and genuine that it really lifts my spirit.

My wife and I (both 30) have been married for 3.5 years. We met a long time ago in 6th grade, but didn't make dating seriously a thing until after college. Things have been rocky, to say the least, but I believe that our love for each other is strong and deep, and I just need help being a husband... but it is probably too late :(

No one cheated on anyone fortunately, but I have an addictive personality and abused pot and alcohol (Dad's side of the family has alcoholism - he quit himself 20 yrs ago, his brother always smoked pot and didn't really get anywhere in life). I am not the type that drinks to get up in the morning, or puts down a 12 pack a day, or secretly drinks alcohol, but in hyped up social situations I would let peer pressure get to me and keep up with the crowd - never saying no. Similarly with pot, I wasn't smoking every day, but I would crave it and she doesn't like that about it, so she's generally against me using it, because of the addictive tendency and history in the family.

Which leads us to today. Back in September, I had a birthday party. I was really excited and drank quite a bit, and then smoked with some of my buddies. I ended up totally passed out in a chair outside near the fire that the group was sitting around. This wasn't the first social situation where I embarrassed her, but it was the last straw for her, and she said "something broke inside". This wasn't the husband she wanted.

She ended up getting her own apartment to have some time to find herself and reflect on her life and marriage. Her birthday is earlier in the year, and she was really anxious about turning 30 regardless of my behavior (things like career, long term goals, etc), so to add my embarrassing events into the mix was just too much.

I tried to play it cool at first, let her have her space, be supportive, etc, but that started to fray after a few weeks. I missed her. I felt terrible for hurting her (emotionally). I asked how long she needed and she didn't know. It was too painful without her, so I pressured her a little more for a timeline.

She started IC, and then we found and went to MC too. I was really defensive in MC because it was all about how much I embarrassed her by drinking too much and puking at a wedding, or passing out outside, and it was tough to take. I decided to start IC, and pause MC until the new year so that we'd get more health insurance benefits, and so that I could "catch up" a little in IC so that we could just focus on the marriage when in MC.

We didn't spend Thanksgiving together, but I chalked that up to her wanting some QT with her family, so I tried to have fun with mine. Leading up to Christmas, her parents invited me to their house for brunch that day and I accepted, despite things being a little weird.

I was going out of town the weekend before Christmas, so she was going to stay in the house to watch our cat. I was a little suspicious of an email alert about her exceeding her text message allowance, so one day before my trip when she was over, I looked through her texts while she was doing something upstairs. The only suspicious thing was from a guy who I don't know, but is someone associated with her motorcycle classes (something she took up over the summer - I think as a new experience to liven up her life). So before I left for my trip, I set up a security camera to see if I would catch her with another man.

Of course that didn't happen. I felt ashamed and admitted it to her later, which just made her feel spied on and untrusting of me. A few days later she separated our phone from a family plan to two personal ones. Then, on New Years, she called and said that after asking for some sort of timeline, that she thought hard about it and her decision was for a legal separation. I have not received any contact from a lawyer yet, but I'm sure it's coming.

She says she still loves me, and I love her too. I definitely know that being so infatuated with pot led me to keep things from her, and live a secret part of my life, which did nothing but leave less of me for her.

I am continuing with IC, but I've asked her about restarting MC recently and she just said "I dunno. Maybe." It's like there is still a chance, but I just don't know.

ETA: We don't have kids. So this is just about us.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Well, no one replied before, but I do have an update in anyone is keeping score.

I wrote her a letter the night before my first post. The day had been emotional, and I started to realize something key - I love her with all my heart, but my brain was addicted to marijuana (psychologically - I know it isn't physically addictive). I looked back on our rocky marriage, and saw numerous ways where I would lie to her, stay up late and use in the house, or when she was out, etc. It may sound like nothing major, but it was a constant craving for getting high, instead of using that focus and energy on showing love. I admitted to all of this in the letter, but I made a point to reiterate that I love her completely, and always will.

She didn't respond for a few days, but by some twist of fate, I was at her parents house over the weekend after returning something I had borrowed from them, and she called there. Her Mom managed to get her to talk with me on the phone, but it was short. She mentioned that she DID read the letter, and didn't know what to say. It made her sad, but she was thankful that I finally shared everything. Then the tears started and I assured her that I would leave before she came over there.

Before I left, though, I did something that seems to have stopped the door from closing completely on our marriage. I admitted to HER parents about my addiction, and all of the problems it has caused. I told them how I almost lost my current job because I nearly failed the drug test. I told them how I would use in the house and lie to her the few times she smelled anything. They were incredibly supportive. And then I admitted everything to my parents.

And the next day, she IMed me. It was about a practical matter, but it was the first time she reached out to me in a while. And the conversation didn't just end once I answered her question. It continued, and even ventured into small talk. We IMed more later in the day, and then yesterday almost all throughout the day.

Even though this is a small turnaround, it is A turnaround. And she is talking to me like an adult again, and we've even talked some about the state of our marriage. She also agreed to go to MC - the week before when I asked she said she wasn't sure she would and was very short with the response. She knows I am in IC with a psychologist who specializes in substance abuse, so she can see I am serious and motivated to fix this problem in my life.

We may not reconcile after this, but for the first time I am not hiding anything from her and if I have any hope of restoring her trust and respect in me, this is the only way.
 

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Hey good luck ti82. By cleaning up your act, you are at least becoming a person who is more attractive to your wife. Sounds like she was hurt pretty badly by your addictions/behaviour. Don't let your hopes get out of control - just keep working on improving yourself and good luck.
 

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Good for you in taking the first step in admitting you have a problem - and even better for you to let her know you aknowledge that problem and are taking steps to remedy it. And telling both sets of parents - that must've been really hard, but again, kudos.

You're right, your admission may not lead to a R for the both of you, but having a clear conscience and finally being upfront with her and your families can certainly help.

My father literally disapeared because he chose his addiction over our family. Some users don't see/refuse to acknowledge the intense pain they inflict on their loved ones with their addiction. That you have and are willing to take the steps needed to right yourself speaks volumes.

Keep working on yourself with your IC. Show her that you are indeed serious about fixing this problem. But also, if she doesn't come back (even thou it may indeed feel like it) it's not the end of the world. You must continue to work on yourself and overcome your addictions so you are a better person for yourself first. Only when you become a better person for yourself can you be a better person for others and future relationships.
 

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You need to focus on you right now. She may or may not come around. Fix the things that are wrong with you. Go to AA meetings. Even though you are not (by your admission) an alcoholic, you just go overboard when you drink, it will be good for you to see what this lifestyle will lead to. Stop smoking pot. Instead use that energy for something that will better you. Start going to the gym or cycling or something. You crave getting high? Go run in the morning.

The point is, dont focus on what she wants right now. She does not want you the way you are. Fix yourself for you and let her see that this is a lasting change. Then work on the relationship.

Good luck.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks for the responses! To finally come clean has been uplifting enough, but the overwhelming support by my family and this forum is icing on the cake.

Stop smoking pot. Instead use that energy for something that will better you. Start going to the gym or cycling or something. You crave getting high? Go run in the morning.
I said to myself the other day, "If I have an addictive personality, I should get addicted to exercise." so Hermes you are spot on. I am rediscovering the snow sports that I used to enjoy so much as a teenager. My Dad was an alcoholic (sober now for 24 years) and he is heavy into cycling. In the last decade, he biked around all 5 great lakes! It's truly amazing to think of how much latent focus and energy we can suppress with an addiction.

I am probably struggling the most right now to temper my hopes. Honestly, the thought of pot right now makes me sick after losing her, though I haven't been around any triggers so I may have it easy at the moment. All I can do, as you all have said, is keep down the righteous path :)
 

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Thanks for the responses! To finally come clean has been uplifting enough, but the overwhelming support by my family and this forum is icing on the cake.



I said to myself the other day, "If I have an addictive personality, I should get addicted to exercise." so Hermes you are spot on. I am rediscovering the snow sports that I used to enjoy so much as a teenager. My Dad was an alcoholic (sober now for 24 years) and he is heavy into cycling. In the last decade, he biked around all 5 great lakes! It's truly amazing to think of how much latent focus and energy we can suppress with an addiction.

I am probably struggling the most right now to temper my hopes. Honestly, the thought of pot right now makes me sick after losing her, though I haven't been around any triggers so I may have it easy at the moment. All I can do, as you all have said, is keep down the righteous path :)
I know this all too well. I had a HUGE problem with pot. My habit cost me 300-400 a week at least. When my exwife and I got together she was fine with it. After a year of dealing with that, she had enough. She asked me to quit. I saw that she was serious and that it hurt her to see me like this. So...i quit. Cold turkey. Never looked back. You can do it too.

Hope is just as bad as anything else too. You need to give up hope that she will come back or want to fix this. Only then can you truly begin to heal yourself. You will be better for yourself and better for her if you do that.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I think the high I got from coming clean about my weed problem is wearing off. I am reading Divorce Busters and every single anecdote has the husband and wife still in the same home. Or they have kids so there is some reason to interact with each other. My wife moved out, and I don't see her much at all anymore. I don't want her to feel like I'm forcing myself into her life, so I've been pretty cautious about reaching out, and most of our communication is over IM. I have no desire to get back into smoking, so that part is fine, but I'm starting to think that she IS much happier without me in her life, even though I am making a lot of positive changes in mine. A few days ago I thought I was superman, and now I feel like ****.
 

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Glad to hear you are making changes that can only lead to better! I found myself in danger years ago, as the doctor kept prescribing pills that made me "happy" (and for me, a lot of severe and varied physical illnesses preceded the realization that I wasn't happy ... with what was ... including "husband"). As I think back, I was feeling good, but there was a definite wall with medication that just made the possibility of being happy, genuinely, and in terms of my relationship, even more impossible.

The main thing I've really ever had a problem quitting is smoking. But I have tendencies to get wrapped up in things that aren't necessarily "healthy" or beneficial, even if they don't constitute a full-fledged addiction. So I really like the thought ... getting a different "addiction" going.

A few places I have seen myself going overboard, like shopping, I have turned into a different sort of activity. I started selling books on-line to clear the clutter from our basement and pay some medical bills. I learned there are books that people will pay a lot for, if you have them to sell. So I made a list and often, when I get the urge, I go "treasure hunting". So far, I haven't found any of those books, but I make notes of books that seem like likely prospects and check them when I get home. More productive than guilt and bags of stuff I really don't need. I'm guessing there are probably ways to do that with a lot of things that might otherwise be somewhat or more destructive.

Congrats on the progress to date and hope a lot more to come! Even now, when the anxieties hit, a lot of the old coping mechs (unhealthy) are gone. Sort of hard, sometimes, when I don't have "the answer" but I notice despite it all (and despite not having yet becoming the woman I'd like to be) I feel a sense of peace and happiness within and that's a lot different than what I used to feel.
 
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