Having a tough day, don’t know what to do

Hey, all. Conner here.

Having a really tough day with my sobriety. Losing my fiancé lit a fire under my ass to quit smoking, and I’m 30 days in.

But today is beating me down. I’m anxious, I’m depressed, I’m just a mess right now. I have no motivation to better myself, I’m even having a hard time justifying quitting. That dangerous nihilistic thought process of “fuck it, you’re gonna be in pain forever anyway, may as well enjoy your smoke.”

It hurts so much to come home to my apartment after work, 1:30-2:00 in the morning, and not just immediately fall apart and cry hysterically.

It’d be so easy to relapse, but it’d hurt my future. On the other hand, I’d give anything to not feel this pain.

I’m telling myself that I’m finally walking on the path of self discovery and self respect, but it feels so terrible walking this path. It hurts. Constantly. Nothing feels like it matters anymore. I have no idea how bad I would feel if I came home to a truly empty apartment, without my sweet pitbull Stella. She’s such a good dog. She’s the only rock I’ve got anymore.

What should I do tonight, rather than swing by a corner store and relapse…? Should I just go home and cry and feel for as long as I need to…? Do I try and keep myself distracted on productive things…?

I just don’t know what to do with this pain. Sitting with it is so hard.

Edited for clarity: when I say smoking, I mean marijuana. I’ve had an enormous dependency problem for the last five or so years and it kinda culminated in losing someone who I truly believed was the love of my life. Having a really hard time with that.


Hello Connor

I’m sorry you’re having such a rough time. 30 days in is remarkable! Yeah, a breakup does feel like forever pain. Crying is okay, in fact, it’s very therapeutic. Stella is also very therapeutic.

In answer to your question, going home and crying it out is a good option. A grieving process follows the loss of a relationship. Many people equate that loss as similar to a loved one dying.

Distraction might help. It’s hard to quit a habit, as it leaves a void behind. I was living in northern Michigan when I quit smoking. When I felt a powerful craving for a smoke, I would go cross-country skiing. 20 minutes of aerobic exercise is a pretty good antidepressant. It also helps with the craving.

I was with my first wife for 18 years, then the relationship fell apart. I spent a lot of time in a fetal position on my bed, crying. I promised myself I would never get into a serious relationship again. 27 years ago, I met the woman that I am still with, and it’s been wonderful.

The hard time that you are experiencing is an investment in your own strength. If you can make it 30 days, you can make it forever. All you really have to focus on is today.

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Honestly, let yourself feel the emotions you’re dealing with. Because if you don’t, you can never heal and get better. I don’t know what you love to do or what your hobbies are, but maybe focus on finding something that you can do that will bring your soul peace. Something related to your interests. It could be as simple as sitting down and reading a book to escape the real world for a while, or maybe a physical hobby. For me personally, I will either listen to music and go for a scenic drive to clear my head, or binge watch 90s sitcoms. Sometimes I’ll even lose myself in a documentary. I’m really sorry you’re dealing with all this, but I hope this helps even if it’s just a little bit. It’s okay to cry. Let it out. It’s the first step to healing.

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Hey @connerm1219,

Thank you so much for sharing and being here. it breaks my heart to see how much pain you’re experiencing lately. Even though I never experienced a breakup, I’ve experienced grief and losses in different ways, and the way you describe how you feel really hits close to home. For what it’s worth, friend, you are not alone in this healing process. We are standing with you. :hrtlegolove:

I’m telling myself that I’m finally walking on the path of self discovery and self respect, but it feels so terrible walking this path. It hurts. Constantly.

Yes, it does. That’s a reality I had to face too.That healing is not like we often envision, as something that would put us in a better position. Healing hurts, because that’s when we’re doing the hard work. That’s when we let our emotions exist and stop trying to cover them by any means. That’s when we give more time and space to ourselves, so we can be more connected to what’s going on in our heart. But when we are recovering or healing from something, we first acknowledge that our heart is full of pain, which hurts. It’s uncomfortable, even painful. Though rationally, you can hold on to the thought that this is the sign that you are allowing something new to happen.

Sitting with our pain is somehow the worst experience I ever had, and keep having. I hate these times when it seems that I’m unable to do anything but feeling, while having the knowledge that my old coping mechanisms aren’t healthy and not what I want anymore. It feels like being divided between emotions that change very slowly while we already learned new things and embrace new perspectives in our life. As if our heart was keeping us back from the life we want, from becoming the person we want to be.

30 days is a HUGE victory. It’s 30 days of strength you have gathered. 30 days of new things you’ve learned about yourself and what you’re able to do. 30 days of proving to yourself that, even in the midst of a storm, you can decide to do what is good for you, even if paradoxically sometimes it means that we need to sit with our pain. Though make sure to find ways to release it and express it in healthy ways. Vent as share as you do here. Write down your thoughts. Eventually, consider meditating techniques or to alternate with times of doing things you enjoy, things for YOU, so you could also encounter times of peace.

You are experiencing a grief, and there is no right or wrong way to feel in these circumstances. Sometimes it seems that it’s going to last forever, that it will hurt like hell the same way until our last breath, but it won’t. Because each day is a renewed opportunity to learn a little more, to feel a little more, and to be overwhelmed a little less.

Make sure to keep connections with people who are safe and caring to you, whenever you need to reach out. This community is also here for you. You will make it through this season, friend. There will be a time when you will look back at these days and will realize how strong, brave you were through your very own vulnerability.

Hold Fast. :hrtlegolove:

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Congratufuckinglations on 30 days! I’m not sure I can say it gets easier with time, but you get stronger and better able to manage it.

Like the others said, crying it out is okay. When you get to your apartment, who is there to judge you besides Stella? Nobody has to know, the is nobody there to shame you, and total bodily surrender is a great way to get the poison out. Besides, it’s been my experience that dogs want to make their people feel better when they’re really upset :relaxed: When I was single, I liked to say there’s no love story quite like that of a man and his dog, and I still believe that there’s a special bond there that can’t be found anywhere else. I mean, look at my avatar :laughing:

There will be hard days. When I have hard days, after I’m done fulfilling my obligations to the world, I sleep. When I’m asleep, the switch is flipped off. When I wake up, I can look forward to leaving a sad environment and distracting myself with daily living. One day at a time, that’s all you need to do to get through.

There’s nothing quite as enlightening, or as painful, as facing all the ugliness in yourself. There comes a point where that’s all that’s left though. We cope in unhealthy ways to mask the feelings that already exist that we don’t want to face, but when we come back to reality, they’re still there waiting for us. You need to find a way to make peace with yourself. Mindless dating was my escape, and when I took a break from that and let all the ugliness shine, I had to find a way to live with it. I discussed it in therapy, I discussed it with friends, I swore things off, I felt my feelings, and I called out the lies I was telling myself. It took years more to learn to love myself, but accepting myself was the turning point.

Luckily, you don’t have to fear that. I know how easy it is to think the worst thoughts, but rest assured that Stella will be there for you! That is a huge blessing.

Congrats again on 30 days. Let us know how it goes, post when you need to vent, feel the pain until it’s gone, and be well Conner. You’ll get through this.

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