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Loving an addict

When another person causes you harm or makes you suffer,  it’s because they themselves are suffering deep down inside. Their suffering is spilling over onto you. That individual does not need punishment, they need help,  love and understanding.  

Who we fall in love with sometimes is no doing of ourselves.  I personally like to think it’s in the stars.  Every person who enters my life is here to teach me some sort of life lesson,  to show me an aspect of myself I have never been able to see and to hopefully in one way or another make me a better,  stronger individual. I’ve struggled with drug addiction way more than half of my life.  Drugs,  hustling,  the streets,  manipulating,  stealing,  prison,  programs,  overdoses,  heartbreak, shame,  guilt,  are all the only things I’ve ever known. 

I’ve been the addict in rehab,  in jail,  estranged from everyone.  I’ve never been on the other side of the disease of addiction. This experience has taught me a lot about what my family and friends have gone through and the reality of what I have done to them.  

My love for an addict is strong.  Some days it’s hard to hold on,  somedays I want to give up,  some days I want to be her rock,  some days I hold her close to make sure she is still breathing,  some days I enjoy every laugh,  every story,  every moment and the next find it hard to believe any word that comes out of her mouth.  It’s a roller coaster, to say the least.  

What I’ve learned the most from this experience is when an addict has hit rock bottom,  is broken enough, and the pain is so great that they finally humble themselves and ask for help, that at that exact moment is the moment I love them unconditionally and do anything in my power to help that addict.  

I was given a chance, I was stood by, I was supported,  I was loved when I couldn’t love myself.  What I was so freely given is now my duty to give to a next.  Having an understanding that the pain,  the lies,  the erratic behavior was a by product of an active addicted mind and not actually the mind and soul of the person I love.  To be aware of the fact that when I was using there was no love strong enough,  to person good enough,  not a single thing on this earth that could stop me from getting my next high,  so why would I expect anything less from another addict.  What I have learned is to give the chance I was given, to love unconditionally, to be the hand to reach down to help because I was once the one down, to not punish or abandon the addict because Lord knows I’ve done worse. To never forget where I came from,  because in reality all any of addicts have is today.