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Re: Mommy on Meth
Aug 15, 2005
You are in an extremely tough situation; as a husband and a father, my heart goes out to you.
Let me try to give you two perspectives...first on behalf of your children. My mother is an addict; alcohol is her preference, but anything will do as long as she is not in reality. As a child, it is nearly impossible to constructively accept and cope with a parents' addiction, without professional help. I am not saying your support isn't just as significant, but you, too are trying to cope and your children require constant support and stability. Because their mother is so far gone, you cannot rely on her for anything except more pain, lies and manipulation. Therefore, do what ever you can to keep your children away from her until she is completely sober. My husband is also an addict, which I only discovered recently. I can honestly say that my mother's addiction has impacted me ten thousand times worse than my husband's addiction. Children almost always want to save their parents. They want to protect them in any way possible, and usually put their parents needs above their own, (ESPECIALLY) when they see how lost and out of control their parent is. Adults have the innate ability to remain logical, grounded and sound. For example, adults can get a divorce and move on with their lives. Children, however, have only one mother and one father, no matter who they are and what they do. Therefore, this loyalty is their biggest weakness. Your children will, without doubt, suffer by not having their mother in their lives until (if ever) she is sober and clean, but the torment and destruction she can do to them if you allow her to see them while she is using (and in complete denial) will go far beyond that pain. So, the lesser of two evils is the only solution here; protect your children and keep them away from their mother as long as she is abusing drugs. Every single negative episode your children are exposed to is engraved forever in their psyche, so try your best to refrain from fighting with her in front of them. Your children will mimic your reactions to her, your coping methods, etc, so use this as your guide. Behave the way you would expect them to, communicate the way you would expect them to and try your best to never ever stoop to her level. Teach your children through behaviour, seek councelling for yourself and allow them the same privilege. You are their only parent right now, protect and guide them through this with encouragement, support and love and always remind them that their mother loves them, no matter what she does. Teach them to forgive her, but also to never accept anything but sobriety from her either. My father definitely helped me cope, but because he, too was so hurt and devastated, I needed my own support, someone objective...therapy was my saving grace.
As I mentioned, my spouse is an addict, too, so I feel your pain and I am sorry for what your wife has done to you. Only now do I understand why my dad wasn't as supportive as I wanted him to be when we were dealing with my mother; his heart was broken. On top of that, he was expected to deal with a lying ex-wife who would stop at nothing to manipulate and destroy him, start a new life for himself and his children with NOTHING...she spent as much as she could on her addictions and took EVERYTHING else. Your wife cannot admit to her problem, and therefore, you have no choice. WASH YOUR HANDS OF HER IN EVERY WAY. Going bankrupt was the last thing that my dad wanted for himself, but in the end, it saved him because she wouldn't have ever stopped trying to take him for a ride. As painful as it must be, start fresh, end this nightmare chapter of your life and know that the next one will be better, MUCH MUCH BETTER. She may have ruined everything in her path, but you have control now and she can no longer ruin your life, only her own. She may never admit to her addiction, but that is no longer your problem. Only she will lose if she continues to lie to herself and everyone else. Your children will understand that in years to come and they will know that you protected them and loved them, especially when she couldn't.
Addicts are great liars, extremely clever, dangerously determined, and manipulative to the worst don't put anything past her. If she will stoop so low as to lie to your children about you and get you arrested FOR NOTHING, know that she won't stop here. Protect yourself and your children and try your best to avoid all contact with her. Have mediators for everything, and when she has an episode or tries to falsely accuse you of something, you are protected because you have a witness. Do your best to keep your children out of the courts, it's hard enough to accept the fact that their mom is an addict, let alone standing in a court room telling a room full of strangers each sad and pathetic story of her destruction. Try not to give them a reason to blame themselves for where she is and what she has become.
I hope I've helped and given you some insight from both a child's perspective and a spouse's. You have reminded me to be grateful that my husband is no where near as painful and far gone as my mother. Good luck to you and your children - the road ahead may appear difficult...but it's much easier than living a life with her and her addiction. Please keep us posted.

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