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My Girlfriend is in Outpatient Rehab...but I Think She's Still Using Drugs...

by Brasco
(NY)

My girlfriend and I are coming up on our 5 year anniversary next month. We're both 29, we've had an amazing relationship thus far but unfortunately there has been a problem with drugs and alcohol and I really don't know what to do. We have a great relationship....but drugs especially have gotten in the way and seem to be creeping their way back in during her rehab.


It almost destroyed what we have last year after 4 years, in July I found out that she had made up a HUGE story about where she was in order to be with her friends doing drugs all night. She hasn't cheated on me with anything but cocaine. I found out that this story was a lie and confronted her and it turned into the worst night of my life - and I was ready to leave if she didn't get help ... so, she did.

Finally it clicked in her head and she went to rehab and stopped drinking, stopped using drugs....things seemed like they were getting better but lately, I think she's using once or twice a week ... cocaine.

The problem is, she works at a bar Wed-Sat night. Not a trashy place, a nicer bar... Her weekly drug test is on Thursday. I think she has been using later in the night every Thursday and/or on Friday nights when working knowing that it will be out of her system by the next drug test 7 days later since coke is usually out of your system in 2-3 days. This kind of blows my mind why they only test these people once a week when they know this...it's sort of saying "ok you can use these 2 days but make sure you don't again for the week"....

I confronted her about it lately, it's very easy when you know someone sober to tell when they're not and to me it just has seemed off lately. She's not drinking, it's almost as if she's just using coke ... and that's strange to me because it was the drinking that would lead her to crave it in the past and now without the drinking - if I'm right about this, it's very strange to me that she'd make this conscious decision.

I don't want to leave her, this is our only problem but it's a huge one to me and it leads to her being dishonest - and it scares me how comfortable she is lying to me when she's using - I dealt with that for a long time. It leads to lying and just overall deceit and I don't want to look forward to this the rest of my life.

I planned on marrying this girl and I still want to - but not like this. I can't have this in my life and I'm just not sure what to do at this point.

I confronted her about it 2 weeks in a row. Once last week after her pupils appeared dilated and she just seemed weird, and again last night she seemed strange when I picked her up from work. We grabbed some food, she didn't talk much once I said "you don't seem like yourself right now, you're slurring your speech and talking slow", she was, I wasn't going to sugar coat it. She ate her food and went to sleep ... and to me it sounded like she had done cocaine the way she was breathing...the half stuffed nose because it's swollen from all the crap the people cut it with...

I am considering calling her rehabilitation counselor and asking that she starts drug testing her twice a week. On Monday after her weekend of work and also on Thursdays like they have been. She works with a bunch of coke heads and alcoholics so it's been hard for her to be around it and the plan is for her to leave ASAP this year ... but its a significant income. She can't just leave the job right now and not work at all.

She has 2 degrees and plans to get out of there ASAP but its a very difficult time to get a "good" job. She brings home about 1200 dollars a week - that's not easy to replace even with her being willing to take a pay cut - she knows that will come with it. Right now, we need this income together and to save for a house, and have been.

I just don't know what to do. We also have a dog together and I love him so much, you have no idea. I could never walk away from him or take him from her. It's like a kid. I love this girl with all my heart - but sometimes I feel like I'm putting myself out by dealing with this. I really thought things were on their way up - but I think for a couple months now she's been doing this on occasion while still looking clean on her drug test weekly - its not okay to do it at all...its not like a diet and you're eating greasy food...this is major. I just wonder when it will stop...because I can't live like this.

It's also very difficult for me to say "listen I KNOW" because I don't know...she's passing her drug tests...but I have lived with her for years and dated her for years. I KNOW her. I know her before work and I know when she's different after work....its not like I'm making up problems - something is not right. I've been suspicious before, but these past 2 weeks have almost been proof that something's up - and of course when confronting her she won't admit to anything.

That's the hardest part - It makes me feel like I'm crazy but I know that I'm not ....she's found a way to beat the system (rehab) and has been working it like this for who knows how long. I'm thinking this had to start sometime between October and now ... because for a while she was getting tested on Tuesdays and Thursdays from another doctor ... and was fine then ... so she couldn't have gotten away with it before.

Anyway - I found this site searching for others having a similar problem - I hope that someone can suggest something to help me...because I'm so sad lately. Every day just eats at my heart.

Answer



Hi Brasco

Your story is sadly so similar to many others who have written about what they endure ... being married to, or in a relationship with someone suffering from an addiction. The substance might be different and the circumstances vary, but the underlying message is always the same ...

The lies, the manipulation, the pretence, sometimes even making out you're the one to blame. That is the world of addiction.

Your girlfriend has been through a drug and alcohol rehab program ... and is currently going through an outpatient treatment program again. So what's missing?

Going through a treatment program is the first and often crucial step in getting sober. But that's only step number one! Staying clean and maintaining your sobriety through working a proper addiction recovery program is the really critical part. Because if you're not working some kind of recovery program consistently, staying clean is exceptionally difficult, if not impossible.

Now since you don't mention anything about her working at her recovery, I can only assume that she isn't? And until she does, I don't think much is going to change. Because one of the key principles of recovery talks about 'people, places and things.' If you keep hanging around the same people, places and things you did during the days of your active addiction, relapse is almost inevitable. And since her job definitely meets those criteria, I don't see how she's going to change while she's still working there.

I know money is important - but at what cost? Surely a job paying half of what she's earning now, without the temptations and risks attached to her current job, is a better bet if she's going to stay clean? Find a cheaper place to live, put the saving for a house on hold, downscale on your expenses. Because as you're experiencing first hand, what kind of relationship have you really got if she isn't clean? All the material stuff you can get back, but without her sobriety all you have is emptiness.

This takes me to the most important and fundamental principle you need to remember in all of this. As much as you love your girlfriend, and want to somehow help her, unless she WANTS sobriety for herself, and is committed to achieving and maintaining that, there isn't a lot you can do.

Sure you can ask her Doctors to test her twice a week. But she'll find a way around that if she wants to keep using. And that's the crux, if she wants to keep using, no matter what you say or do, she'll find a way. Eventually you may have to make her choose ... you or the drugs. That might shock her into taking her recovery seriously, but it may not. Understand that it's got nothing to do with you, and that you simply can't control or cure her addiction. Her sobriety is entirely her responsibility.

I know you're torn and what you're going through is incredibly difficult, but unless your girlfriend becomes serious and committed to a life of sobriety by working at her recovery, this is the kind of life you can expect to live. Except it will probably get worse with time.

So I think you need to decide on the kind of future you want, and whether you're prepared to be in a relationship as it currently stands? As much as your girlfriend is responsible for her choices, you are for yours - so your future happiness and well-being is entirely in your hands.

Take Care and Best of Luck




Comments for My Girlfriend is in Outpatient Rehab...but I Think She's Still Using Drugs...

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May 02, 2010
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Girlfriend is in rehab for pills, im torn on what is right for me
by: Billy J. M.

I have read the stories above and have a very simular except I actually tried the drugs with her because i got so jealous of it taking her away from me..I dont suggest this to anyone. Only by the Grace of my loving Father in heaven did I stop and continue to try to get her help. I will say for the two weeks I had her full attention, but their still was love for me...Only for IT...She is in rehab now for 30 to 120 days. She snuck out to get peircings with a couple of girls and called me t pay for the peircings over the phone. I was dissappointed however I didnt say anything to her about it because she was so proud of being clean...I didnt hear back from them again til the next morning when she called and said she had been walking the street all night with the other girl but that she was still clean...She asked me to drive 3 hours to go and help. I knew the center was going to call me and did. i told them i had heard from her but that i didnt know where she was...They of course called me a liar and i was ok with that for the moment...I thought if i trick her as they wanted me to do and perhaps it happened again while she is getting to the place where she's going to be serious then she probably wouldnt trust me to call me for help...Now the only other people she would know to call will bring her drugs if that was what she wanted...So i made my decision to go...I went and she stayed clean while i worked it out for her to get back in and she did while the other girl used thru the night and we didnt know about it...So she is back in rehab and i feel pretty good about the whole thing. I get a phone call from her dad who is a very loving father...which I am the one that went to him and let him know how serious it was a because i knew if was anything like me he would do whatever it would take to help and he did./..So anyway he used to think i was the greatest thing for his daughter but because a couple dopers said while he was at her house that they were they to see me, and so even upon explaining to him i have nothing to do with any of this he still just seems different ot me...When his daughter and i started dating 2 years ago she had a little girl 2 months old that calls me daddy...So anyway im on my home thinking everything went great when i get a call from him and thinking he was going to thank me for caring enough to go but instead he asked me i thought i was going to accomplish by going their..I told "just what i did accomplish" she is safe back in rehab...He said she doensnt need your help she is just using you...stop sending her letters and just stay out of it

Feb 25, 2010
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Drugs, drinking, lies, cheating, manipulations etc..... ahahah
by: Max

I have been reading your sad story. this is what happened to me for the past 3 years! I met her, she was cool , easy going but I discovered that she was drinking every time that she or we were going out and she was out of control, even mad when at 2 am, i was saying let`s go home! Then her friends, alcoholic people and doing drugs but she was telling me that they were friends for a long time and their drug problems was not hers! then quite a few time, she went out of control, ballistic because i busted her going to the restrooms with 2 persons, she did not say anything, understood that I was suspicious but then once in the car, she started to smoke, was driving crazy, almost hit a cop car at the traffic light and almost run a stop sign... i go out of the car and she took off not even caring about me, the area was not very good... how nice, right! then one day, i said let`s do a hair test! she was like " yeah sure" but let me tell you, those people know how to keep it up, they have been lying to their family and etc for decades or years... then, she found another friend, more alcoholic than the first one, a pure white trash.. real bad... in 2005, she took off to L.A to get away. In 07 when we started to date, she was telling me that she was clean in L.A and that L.A was healthy etc.... then one day in 2008, one of her friend tells me that she met her in L.A and that my gf was supposed to meet her at LAX, .. she did not show up and once my gf visited her at the hotel she even did not know where she was!!!! THEN I understood, that she was lying non-stop..non-stop. According to your story, I feel the same, I loved her a lot and now she has a dog and i do care of the dog a lot, a lot and it has nothing to do with me trying to stick with her but just I am a dog lover. But I am out of it. The bad thing in my story, I know that she will try to hurt me, psychologically, she already did many times. I tried to show her some peace but if I open my eyes and my heart, she is very hateful and I think she has no hope, no feelings. But let me tell you, you need to get out of it. There is no love in your story, love is not this. Love is fun, with respect. I talked to my gf for the past 3 years, hours and hours. tried all tactics, all Technics.. nothing worked. fucking nothing... yep it is bad but better to realize that being psychology dead! Because those people are volonturaly and unconsciously dangerous. When You have a real psycho girl, it is easy to walk away cause it is obvious, real obvious. when you have a crazy"" girl or guy, half crazy and half ok, then this is were the problem comes from. Some of those people have something and i guess you like to take care of someone too. You might have a soft spot, You like the dog , so i am not surprised..... and your soft spot is in a hostage situation. My stupid advice... take the dog and run away

Jan 26, 2010
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Make a Call
by: Anonymous

Do you want to be with a woman or who does drugs, or don't you? Make the call ... and then you need to communicate that to your girlfriend. She then has to decide, get serious about cleaning up her act, or you're moving on. Because if you don't - this is just gonna keep being a problem. And what kind of life and future can you build with a girl for whom drugs play such a big part? I would rather take the pain now and get it over with by moving on, rather than have it fester like an ongoing wound that never goes away. Tough call bud, but it's your future at stake here.

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