Wife, Mother, Addict -- please help me!


#1

I’m a wife and a mother of three almost grown boys. I have tried to make the most of a difficult marriage and to raise my children in the arms of the Church. For over a decade, I taught high school CCD. I have obeyed the laws of the Church to the best of my ability. I have trusted God and I really thought that I always loved Him with everything in me. When my mother was dying, I took her into my home and I cared for her. Grateful to have had the opportunity to do so, I was able to let go of her and entrust her to the hands of God. I prayed for her everday for almost two years. I trusted God in the little things and in the big things. Then, something happened.

A part of me that I always repressed, that part that I refused to allow to fantasize about escaping my life by the means of a needle in my arm, couldn’t be silenced any longer. I can’t explain how it happened. An unknown anxiety grew in me as the desire insisted that I confront it. Peculiar panic attacks struck me. I was always someone who didn’t worry. Suddenly, I had no peace and I could no longer hear the Christian music that I had always enjoyed while walking in the morning. Then, my father was diagnosed with bone marrow cancer. At first I was shocked and apalled that my first thought was to wonder what pain medicine he would be prescribed. I berated myself, but didn’t worry very long because I knew that to use a medication not prescribed to me would be a line that I would never, ever cross. But, I did.

In November of 2008, I lied to my father. I somehow knew that the pills would calm the anxiety that had taken over my life. Although my thoughts obsessed on the pills, I couldn’t seek counseling. That would be too shameful. Nobody could know! I had always professed that God was more than sufficient. My children would cease to believe. I would have failed in my responsibility to be a witness for Christ. If only 15mg of hydrocodone hadn’t immediately fixed everything! I thought that I was safe because I wasn’t given enough pills to become addicted, little did I know that there’s a difference between addiction and dependency. I was addicted that very first day and physical dependency was not far behind.

In a matter of two months, I went from 0mg of an opioid to needing 110mg or else I would get dope sick. From the very beginning, I obsessed about the pills every day. When my little supply ran out, I stole from my father. Then, I lied to my doctor and then to my father’s. I immediately became someone I never was. Yet, I couldn’t stop, always sure that just another couple days and what had broken in my world, God would put back together and I wouldn’t need the pills anymore. My world stayed broken and the pills stopped working. I was taking so many that I couldn’t lie enough to keep up with what I needed to not get sick. The anxiety when you’re dope sick is horrible. You feel as though you’re going to die.

I’m in counseling now. I’m on an opioid replacement therapy (for those of you unfamiliar… think something like methadone). I’ve gotten a sponsor in AA. Still, my family doesn’t know. I lie to go to meetings. I have spent all my personal savings on drug replacement doctor. I’m so, so ashamed of myself. The reason that I’m coming here is because I got the idea at Church today… to look for a group of Catholics who might be willing to help me. I have a terrible problem in overcoming my addiction…

I don’t trust God. :frowning:

At first, I begged God to take this addiction from me. I told Him how very sorry I am. I didn’t mean this to happen. I just felt like I had to do something to quiet my head, which the pills did. But, He hasn’t taken it away. I want to trust Him. But, I can’t. Trusting Him would mean being able to tell my family what I am, confident that if they didn’t understand that He’d stay by me.

I have to trust God to do the Second and the Third step of the AA program.

Step 2: Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.
I believe with all my heart that God CAN restore me to sanity. I just know that there are those whom He allows to remain in their insanity, even if only long enough to teach them something. The thought of asking Him and Him leaving me here, devastates me.

Step 3: Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood Him
All I can think is that my life was in His hands before this all happened. I’m afraid of what might come next.

Any words of wisdom? I’m lost. I’m confused. Please help! I don’t know how to trust God again.


#2

You are in my prayers. I’d like you to meditate on this quote.

Nothing makes one feel so strong as a call for help.
Pope Paul VI

With that in mind, I think you should seek comfort in the Sacrament of Penance and perhaps even one on one talks with your Priest. Drugs are difficult to combat and without a solid basis in the Sacraments your struggle will be worse.

Also, I recommend that you seek out a Perpetual Adoration Chapel in your area and spend at least an hour a week there in prayer.

In Christ,

denver_faithful

GOOD LUCK:thumbsup:


#3

forums.catholic.com/showthread.php?t=325485

oswc.org/SelfHelp/DivineMercy.asp

May The Blood and Water that gushed forth from The Heart of Jesus as a fount of mercy, cleanse, heal and protect !


#4

You posted this on Divine Mercy Sunday. I don’t think that is a co-incidence. God desires to pour out His mercy upon you. If you have a rosary, you can use the beads to pray the Divine Mercy chaplet, which is a wonderful devotion to those seeking God’s Mercy. ewtn.com/Devotionals/mercy/dmmap.htm

It’s very simple and only takes about five minutes. Sign of the Cross, Our Father, Hail Mary, Apostle’s Creed, then on the Our Father Beads pray, “Eternal Father, I offer You the Body and the Blood, Soul and Divinity of Your dearly beloved Son our Lord Jesus Christ, in atonement for our sins and those of the whole world”, then on the Hail Mary beads pray instead, “for the sake of His sorrowful passion, have mercy on us and on the whole world”. Say those around the rosary beads. Coclude with saying 3 time “Holy God, Holy Mighty One, Holy Immortal One, have mercy on us and on the whole world.”

I don’t know if I have any words of wisdom for you. I’m praying for you that you learn to trust God again.


#5

Get a good sponsor. Work the steps. If you haven’t already done so, commit to thirty days in a row of meetings.

Then realize this is just the start. However, you are far from alone. I think you will find if you stay faithful that you will grow spiritual and understand better why God allows such things. Indeed, your further spiritual well-being may be the very purpose behind this cross.


#6

Wow… Today is Mercy Sunday, special graces are open to those who need them most. If you can, think about Christ’s willingness to ask for forgiveness of the father, for those who were killing him. We cannot, with our human minds and weakness, comprehend his mercy and love. Talk to Jesus and ask for mercy and love. Ask St. Faustina to petition Jesus for you. I will pray hard for you tonight.


#7

My heart and prayers go out to you and for you! You are brave to admit that you have an addiction. That in itself is a major step. I am an non-practicing alcoholic. My travels down this path have led me far from God, in trouble with the law and many health problems. I understand where you are right now.

I believed that God would never forgive me. I was convinced that I was going to hell for all the things I did during this part of my life. I was wrong. Instead now I cling to God in every way. Nothing in my life do I leave to my own devices. I learned that I am not capable of making any decisions on my own, only with trust in God.

I think that you should seek out the counsel of your priest or some other religious. They can be a very good source of inspiration. I went and talked to my priest and I do not feel less of a person for doing so. I know you said that you have hidden this well from your family, does this include your husband? It may help to talk things over and get it in the open with him. It may make your journey to abstinence much easier to accomplish.

May I suggest prayers to St Dymphna, she is the patron saint of mental and emotional illness. We have just that. I will pray for you always.

May the Divine Mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ wash over you constantly!

God Bless!


#8

As a person who suffers form panic attacks and generalized anxiety, I can fully understand how your problem evolved. You can trust God since your post indicates that you are on the road that He put you on. Your journey occurred for some reason that you do not realize now. For me I really refused to take medication intially even after landing in the hospital from an intense panic attack. My wife, who is my angel, helped me to realize that God works through things like support groups and medication. She helped me to realize that taking medication is not a sign of weakness or of not being in control.

I would venture to guess that many alcoholics are addicted to alcohol to ease anxiety. You just picked your dad’s medication. I got lucky and received medical help. You will get past this and if you need medication for the rest of your life then so be it. This is our cross to bear and we can join it with the suffering of Christ. My prayers are with you and try not to be so hard on yourself. God knows you and your pain and He loves you inconditionally. You will be helping someone else someday when they hear your story. Ask me how I know…teachccd :slight_smile:


#9

I dont have any great words like hte previous posters…I just wanted to let you know your heartfelt post touched me :hug3:
I will pray for you.


#10

*My Dear Lady,
I am a Husband, Father and … I thought I was a good worker, citizen, Christian. Well, not such a great Christian, but trying hard not to give up. This fellow at work started playing loud, raunchy music (‘Shakin’ Hands’ by Nickelback) and today had a red light bulb on all day, trying to rattle me, I guess. I don’t have any temptation to react unkindly, but sometimes carelessly spoken words do come out! Get out your rosary and pray one for me, please! I will pray for you, too. *


#11

Christin.

I will pray for you.

Please visit this site - natlshrinestdymphna.org/ St Dymphna helped me when I was near hopelessness.

Bob


#12

Christin

I thought of you and prayed several times today.

Please consider visiting this Catholic Charities site: ]http://www.addictionsearch.com/treatment_facilities/catholic-charities_3.html

Bob


#13

Lord, so much pain. Please have mercy on our sister who found the burdens she carried to much to bear and sought escape, except it wasn’t escape but a prison.

Dear Christin, of course you’ll have gone to Confession to address your spiritual needs.
Your problem, otherwise, is both physical (chemical) and psychological,
so you need help in those very human areas.

You’re in good company, Love.
The Lord’s best friends “stuffed up.” Very badly, actually, and at the worst possible time…but they came through in the end. so will you.
Maybe in your own crucifixion you’ll find company in this prayer.

Apostles, pray for our restoration and faith

Dear Apostles of Jesus, many of us experience crucifixion in our lives and in the lives of dear ones, as you did. Please pray for us and guide us, so that if loss and pain engulfs others’ lives or our own, we will continue to pray and evangelise.

You were His chosen companions. Your hearts were broken and your lives shattered by the terrible betrayal and death of your great hope Jesus. He had preached love and faith; He had preached the Kingdom to which He claimed all persons are called. Defeated and disgraced with no more honour than the vilest criminal, He was tortured, executed and buried.

His words and acts now meant nothing, as all of you—except John—scattered and hid to avoid a similar fate. Disillusioned, you wondered if the last few years were a shameful mistake. Were you betrayed by your discipleship to this condemned man?
Poor men, how could you reconcile the terrible events of this Passover with the Son of God, the Saviour whom you had believed Jesus to be! How could this disgrace, loss, and failure be the end to which He, and possibly yourselves, could be destined!

Peter, you, His appointed one, denied even an acquaintanceship with Him. How great your shock and your disillusionment when the full realisation of your perfidy assailed you!

Only John returned to stand beneath the cross with the grieving women. Beloved John! Shaking with grief and shock, you stood there, gutted by the unbelievable tragedy unfolding before you. Faith and love supported you, yet did you not experience the same terrible emptiness and loss as your fellow apostles and other disciples?

Dear Apostles, throughout the ages, countless individuals experience in some way the **crucifixion **of a loved one, or **of themselvesand the consequent challenge to hope and faith. They may feel emptiness, or loss of zeal. They may lose all trust in the living, merciful God. **

Pray for them, for us, that in such periods we may be faithful, regardless of broken heart and anguish of spirit. Pray that we may be restored to hope, to trust, to prayer, to active service of love in the Kingdom. Intercede for such resurrection in us. Implore the Holy Spirit to come and restore our spirits, making us true apostles of Jesus. Pray that we become evangelists, enabling the Spirit to draw others into the Kingdom of God.

**Thank you, Apostles of Jesus, whose weaknesses mirror our weakness, and whose restored faith, zeal, and courage, inspire us. Pray for us who are your sisters and brothers throughout the ages. **Share your blessings with us. Pray that we shall receive in fullness those precious gifts of His love that He longs for us to share and distribute.

Obtain that we honour and delight our God with all heart and strength. Then, when at last our souls rise to join yours, we shall enjoy eternity at your side, honouring and loving the great Son of God, whom we once betrayed out of our fear and selfishness. 1999


#14

Christin

I can see it’s really hard, that you feel like you’re living a nightmare, but each of us who have answered you have read all you said and only care about you and respond with Love. And I think God directed you to Catholic Answers Forums so at least you’d know you are loved even in the situation you’re struggling with. I just ask God to remind me to pray for you, and for your family, in all my daily Communions.
Please keep going and keep in touch.
Warmly, Trishie :console:

In failure

Jesus, I put my trust in the apparent failure of the Cross, for You are condemned to a criminal’s execution and it seems that Your mission has failed, You who alone could redeem humanity. Who can accept that it is God-incarnate whose sweat and blood drips into the dust, from Your drained, dishonoured body! Yet Your human cry of abandonment by the Father is belied by the triumph of love and faith in Your final confident submission. You die, but You have not betrayed the Father’s trust.

Jesus, to my sadness, I fail in many ways and sin against others by my failures. Have I betrayed Your will or mistaken Your purpose? Will You restore me to grace now, Jesus? To do what? Will You show me? Will You fuse together the broken pieces—of my life, of my service—to make a new and better creation? Am I to step around the fragments and to pass another way?

I ask to walk with certainty along the path of holiness that You choose uniquely for me. If not, then please allow me the certainty of buoyant faith. I ask courage to continue through the enveloping fog, trusting each small moment to the illumination of faith and grace.

**Jesus out of my failure and sorrow You will bring healing and goodness luminescent as priceless pearls grown around grains of suffering, for Your glory, and for others’ remedy and blessing. ** July 1981


#15

Christin,

Still praying for you! Always remember you are not alone. We at this forum have you in our prayers and care if you are alright. Give us a holler back and let us know how you are!
No matter what life throws you, trust in Jesus.

Remember the poem “Footprints”? Jesus is more than glad to carry you, you are after all one of His children too. God knows that we all make some pretty bad decisions. It is just making them right. The pain and fear you must feel is normal, turn it over to God. He will gladly take it.

May you be drenced in Jesus’ Mercy today and everyday for the rest of your life!

God Bless!


#16

Prayers, and hugs, for you.


#17

Dear Sister~WELCOME!!!

You paint yourself as the only one sailing on this lonely sea. This is SUCH a common affliction & YOU ARE NOT ALONE!

First~thank goodness you have found help and professional support to escape the chemical addiction. God and prayer are part of the solution…but not the exclusive answer. You NEED treatment and the sponsor as well as your family’s support.

Since you mention having an AA sponsor…is there some way this person could help you break the ice with your family? You also mention a troubled marriage…is there someone you trust in your family(sister, aunt, …?) to be with you so you can open up to your husband/kids? I think you need to disclose this IF FOR NO OTHER REASON than the fact that the continued deception will hamper you efforts at escaping your addiction and cause unneeded stress (the problem that drew you to opioids in the first place!). You will be SO relieved to have this burden off your back!

I’ve never battled addiction, but have suffered from chronic (headache) pain for years. Perhaps mercifully, I have a condition that prevents me from being able to metabolize narcotics, but have been floored at the willingness of physicians to prescribe them–and in huge doses. I do understand the lure and potential for addiction to anything that promises to reduce your pain–whether physical or emotional.

I don’t have specific advice other than to offer the comment that the frequency of this problem is a reflection of a medical community all too willing to prescribe, instead of properly treat anxiety and chronic pain issues. Drug companies and for-profit managed health care often make this a very easy path for physicians to take.

You have recognized your vulnerability and taken the steps towards responsible management of this struggle. Don’t beat yourself up for having stumbled into this. Admit your struggle get your family on-board and keep moving to get beyond it! You have my respect and WILL be in my prayers. Best wishes!


#18

My heart truly breaks for you. I know the terrible shame that precipitates when you have a secret you must keep hidden. When I was 18 I landed in the psyciatric unit and the doctors forced me to tell my parents about my problem, well, actually they would’ve told them themselves, I just said I wanted them to hear it from me. It was easily one of the hardest things I’ve ever done.

You are taking steps on your own behalf, and that is huge, you ought to give yourself credit for taking that first and biggest step.

I won’t tell you need to stop keeping this a secret from people because…well…that would be pretty hypocritical of me. The only reason I stopped keeping my problem secret was because I wasn’t given a choice. But regardless, it’s only something you’ll do once you are prepared. But the truth is secrecy is a sickness unto itself, you will suck yourself dry with all the energy you pour into just keeping this hidden.

As far as trusting God, that’s something I’ve struggled with to.

Well…perhaps more so accepting how completely and totally God loves me.

Based off of personal experience, I with the pp who pointed out God works through people, and not necessarily even people of devout faith. Before I met the therapist I’m working with now I had a really bad experience with another mental health proffesional that led me to swear I was completely and totally done with therapy. But, needless to say, my urges came back, I went to church, prayed, talked to people of faith, but finally gave up and went to the secular counseling services at my school, and let me tell you, the therapist I’m working with now is about the best thing that ever happened to me. I honestly feel like I was meant to meet him, like it was what God intended all along.

So, I guess the point I’m making is God isn’t just inside a church. He’s everywhere and everything, working through everyone of every faith. He’s with you and loving you regardless of what you do or where you go.

Hope that helps.


#19

Hello!

I have had a similar expierence with my therapy. I been in theraphy for about 20 years. Most were excellent therapists, I just couldn’t find the right one. About eight years ago I started with a new therapist and she must be straight from God. She is a devout Catholic and she came at a time when I was just re-entering the Faith. She has been my crutch and amazingly my life has been on track since I started seeing her. May I suggest that maybe you pray and I will pray too for you to find a sponser or a therapist who will get you through this with God’s help, hopefully a Catholic like yourself. This is an added bonus for me and I don’t deny it has made my therapy more solid!

Still praying for you and will keep on as long as I breathe!

God Bless!


#20

:)Christin, a therapist acquaintance of mine says: *She is on the road to recovery already. If she wants advice regarding her need to trust God, I would have to say she must quit personifying God! God is not a man, but an all encompassing power greater than man and beyond gender specific description. All that comes in contact with God aspires to a higher level, no if’s and’s or buts. It is not God who she does not trust, it is herself. Not to get Biblical, but “The truth shall set you free” She will be surprised when she tells her loved one’s of her secrets and learns they all had secrets too…just like mom…maybe they will all loosen up and come together as a family. As long as she continues to fight for recovery she has a chance to wake up one morning and with the blink of an eye, her troubles will be behind her. *
Best warm and healing wishes, Colmcille&Kin:)


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