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Addiction and Judgement

(backstory: I work grocery retail, Corona virus scare has me working double what I’m used to, plus my store is going out of business, so the owner is already making us work harder. I’m also putting my ferret down tomorrow which is my first ever pet and I don’t think I’ve come to the reality of it yet)

I’ve been vaping since I was 16 (currently 21) and I’ve been trying to quit since the beginning of this year. I’ve gone 2 weeks multiple times without nicotine, but I always find myself going back to it. I also drink almost daily. Alcoholism runs heavy in my family, so I can’t tell if I’m addicted, or if I’m just drinking because it’s a fun New thing to do given I’ve been 21 for half a year.
I’ve been trying to quit smoking, and lay off drinking because I value the relationship im in so so much. Mentally I want to give up everything I can to be in this relationship, but for some reason I just can’t. My partners parents already don’t think kindly of me because they have high expectations and want what’s best for their child, and I just don’t meet those expectations, so with the addictions I struggle with, it only makes it worse. I wish I could just be locked up, away from my addictions so I don’t even have access to them. I feel weak. I feel hopeless. I feel like my partner deserves so much better than me. I don’t know what to do, and I’m scared my addictions are going to make me lose what I value most. This is the most stuck I’ve ever been in life and I feel so powerless. I’m scared.

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Hey RamJam <3

It’s always good to see you. I’m sorry that it’s in a moment of such high stress. This corona virus has really been causing a lot of stress in so many areas. People losing work, people being overworked, people being held back from travel, stuck, struggling to get basic needs. It’s rough. I’m sorry that you’ve got such an overload going on right now. But I just want to say that I appreciate you greatly and the work you are putting in. It’s people like you that we have to rely on so we can get our needs. Not enough people say it, but thank you. I know it’s probably incredibly stressful in so many ways.

Addiction is hard. Whether it’s to quit smoking or drinking. I was raised in a family of alcoholics. Like you, it runs heavy in the family. I know that you love and value your relationship. And I imagine right now with distance, things are probably even more of a challenge. What are some things that you think could help you in trying to let go of these addictions? What are some things that have helped you before when you went 2 weeks? What things need to take place to help you stay on track?

Also, I just want to say something, you know, in my previous relationship, my in-laws never cared for me either. They didn’t like that I had so many mental health issues. I couldn’t work. I know how much of a strain it can be when your spouse’s family doesn’t like you but, it’s important that you know, what matters is that you love each other. That you support each other. If your partner loves you, that is all that matters. But I know how hard it is to deal with a family that isn’t very supportive. It’s very stressful. But you know, your struggles don’t take from your value as a person or your worth of being loved. Even though I know it can feel like it. I know I felt pretty cruddy when I was reminded all of the time that they didnt feel I was good enough. YOU ARE good enough by the way.

You are having a hard time. Sure you may be struggling, but that doesn’t make you weak. The fact that you can acknowledge area that needs to be improved shows strength. The fact that you TRY shows strength. The fact that you have kept trying shows strength. You reaching out and wanting to talk about it shows STRENGTH. What are some things do you think that could help you work on this? A support group of some sort? Therapy maybe? Some healthy routine of some sort? What kinds of things could take place to help with this?

I know I cant fix these things for you, but I care. And you’re always welcome to reach out if you need a friendly space. That goes for both you and your partner <3 I cherish you.

Hang in there buddy.
hugs

  • Kitty
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The fact you want better for your partner shows great merit. You have the great quality of being empathetic. It’s a blessing for friendship and relationships. That’s anything anyone can ask for.
Show yourself the kindness that you show your partner. Self-love and self-compassion toward oneself. Its okay that your significant other’s parents don’t approve. You can’t please everyone. Just be the best version of yourself. Don’t rush, start with small steps.
You are good enough for your partner. Everyone has room for improvement. No one is perfect. I’m sure your partner loves the fact your empathetic and care for that person.
If you feel you have a drinking problem you can always attend alcoholic anonymous groups. I’ve been to them before and it’s a great place to start with sobriety.

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My friend, you just completed Step 1 of AA. You’ve admitted you are powerless over your addictions–that you’ve been trying to do it your way and it’s not working. That is not a small achievement–we don’t want to admit that things are out of our control or that they rule us. It takes a lot of courage and humility to admit that. Congratulations!

If you’re comfortable, go to an AA meeting. They’re judgment-free zones, where everyone’s stories are different but everyone is there for the same reason. If AA is too real, see if there are any Celebrate Recovery programs in your area. CR is a 12-step program open to anyone who is sick of dealing with bullshit in their lives. I’m in a similar program right now, with everyone from drug addicts to sexual sinners to people who just live in a constant state of depression and anxiety, and not only do I not feel judged, but in that environment I also feel far less judgmental. We’re all there because we’re sick, so judge not lest ye be judged.

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I know the fear of thinking people aren’t going to want to help, or are going to judge me harshly because of my addiction,but the fact that you are reaching out for help, it’s going to be the opposite. Your partner loves you, and wants to support you whatever the situation with this is… As long as you’re willing to do the work. I mean, Dan especially can vouch for me when I say it took me a very long time to learn that the thing that deters people from helping us is when we refuse to listen. Does the “5 minutes rule” work for you. It never did for me until recently. “Ok… I want to get high right now, WHEN I FINISH THIS THING, I can go and get high.” Then i finish that next thing, i’ll go “ok, if i still feel this way in X amount of time, I can get high” i keep pushing it back.
We’ll talk some more and I’m happy to help! Love you.

Hold Fast.
Kayla

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Hey friend,
I can’t imagine how this must be weighing on you. You are loved, you matter, and you are heard. Your fears are valid. I encourage you to seek help for this addiction and among those who can really help you, showing grace in the process, them to you and you to yourself. Maybe a local AA group or talking to an addictions counselor. Also, being open with your partner about how you are feeling, how you are doing, and the thoughts you’re having will help too. I’m sure they care about you a lot and its okay to tell them whats going on. You have a desire to be better, so creating some kind of action plan to change that will be best for you, can really help to manage what you’re experiencing. Know that exactly where you are and who you are right now is someone worthy of love. Be kind to yourself, friend. We can all benefit from self-improvement, but you are valued right now, no matter what you’re facing. Love you, hold fast.

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Hey @RamJamNutslam

Here’s the live video response from todays stream!

Hold fast

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