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My ex-boyfriend is a Heroin Addict and it's Tearing me Apart

by Jackie
(Long Island, NY)

I'm 18 years old, and I live in long island New York. Its becoming a huge epidemic here where teens are using and over dosing on heroin.

3 years ago I met this amazing guy and we became the best of friends. Almost 2 years ago we started dating, and nothing ever changed, we stayed best friends through everything. Never had a bad moment together.

Before we started dating, I knew he had tried heroin and well I didn't really mind, because we were young and always experimenting with drugs.
His big sister is a heroin addict and a big part of his life. She's the one who got him into pills and helped get him heroin for the first time, which plays a big part in his addiction today.

A year and a half ago he was put on probation for fighting. Which meant he couldn't smoke weed anymore so he started doing heroin once a week.
Again, I didn't mind because I felt bad that I was still smoking and he couldn't. Basically we were huge potheads together.

I didn't notice him starting to get addicted until about 7 or 8 months ago, when he would sort of freak out when he couldn't get a bag on the only day of the week he could do it. So I starting doing my best to get him to stop, but ultimately I failed most of the time.

I'm not sure anymore how it happened, but months and months went by and he got worse and worse.
Eventually he got so bad that he completely changed. I noticed I was no longer his best friend, even though he was still mine ...

About a month ago he tried quitting again and starting smoking crack with one of my friends girlfriends. Soon after, he left me and started dating her instead. He turned her onto heroin, and I guess he liked it because he always tried to put me in that same boat with him, but I wouldn't join.

He used to do only use about a bag a day, but with this girl addicted now too, they were doing a whole lot more. But, since she's addicted herself she ended up leaving him a couple of weeks ago for her ex.

He called me up trying to be friends again and told me he's getting really bad and that he's started shooting up. It tore me completely apart. I started yelling and crying and he said he doesn't need this right now. So of course I changed my attitude and told him "I'm here for you, but you need help. You cant do this on your own," but he thinks he can.

A few days later I decided I couldn't be friends with him anymore. I was moving on with my life and I just cant take the pain. He responded and told me "How can you do this to me when I need you the most?"

So I came up with a plan. And that plan was to keep him at my house for the weekend while he got clean. and told him that if he fails, or leaves my house during the weekend, we aren't friends anymore.

He agreed, at first he didn't like the idea, but he called one night asking if I still wanted to do this for him, and I said 'of course.' Well, it's Saturday night and I haven't heard from him all day. It was supposed to start Friday night.

I'm really torn apart, I just don't know what to do? I don't know what to say, I don't know how to act ...

All I want is for him to get clean, I cannot feel better, and I cannot go through everyday without being depressed unless I know I'm doing the right thing to help him get better.

I've moved on, and realized nothing will ever be the same, and that I don't want him in my life. I understand that he probably won't get better. But I'm just so torn on what actions I need to take to get him better?

I wanna put him before my feelings. His best interest is all I care about right now, but I don't know what to do. Please help me out ...


Hi Jackie

I think your story is a perfect example of the insanity of addiction - how it's busy destroying your ex's life, yet even though he's starting to realise it, he's not prepared to do what is necessary and ask for help so that he can get clean.

When it comes to a drug as dangerous and addictive as heroin, play with fire, and chances are you're going to get burned - so hopefully in future you WILL mind if someone you care about starts using it, even if they only want to do it once a week to begin with.

Look I don't want to lecture you now because I think you've seen first hand how dangerous drugs can be, so hopefully you'll use this experience for the better in future.

So that comes back to what you can do for your ex. The truth is unfortunately not a lot. Until he is ready to take responsibility for his addiction and do what is necessary to get clean and stay that way, you're pretty much fighting a losing battle.

The best thing you can do is encourage him to get help, and hopefully that will help persuade him to eventually do so. The idea of having him stay at your house for the weekend, while a good idea, isn't a long-term solution because even though it might keep him clean for a weekend, there is a lot more to beating an addiction than a weekend of abstinence.

Overcoming an addiction requires a lot of work and change on the mental, emotional, spiritual and physical levels - and that's why the best thing you can do is to try get him into a drug treatment program that will address all these things. But until he wants that for himself and accepts he can't do it alone, it's unlikely that anything you say will be able to convince him.

It may help to understand your role in someone else's addiction (the three C's of addiction): You did not Cause it, You can't Control it, and You won't be able to Cure it.

So I know you really want to help in some way, but unless your ex-boyfriend wants to be helped, you may just have to set him free, and hope that at some point he reaches his bottom, from which he will be prepared to surrender and admit his powerlessness to control his addiction, and thereby get the help he needs.

I wish you the best of luck and hope everything works out for the best.

Take Care

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Jan 16, 2013
My terrible life of love
by: Anonymous

i want to take it all back and show her different. But its like she continues to not budge! Well i did not hear from her for another 5 months. I got ahold of her on facebook and told her if she wanted to come chill again for the weekend or whatever and we get drunk and maybe movie whatever! I once again picked her up from the library 3 days ago and she hopped in my truck and started crying so hard about how she is addicted to heroine sense thanksgiving. This time she came to me, asking to say with me for a few days so i let her!! She withdrawled so bad i literally gave her everything, my liquor i got her smoke, i tried to keep her away from it! She wanted help and she is my ex, of course i will always love the one who did everything for me, i cant find another one like her!! I eventually gave in after reading quitting cold turkey could be bad and even kill her and took her to get it, she was so happy that i just dont understand how she will ever get off it!! It makes her so sick without it like she is going to die!! I feel terrible like me being her first love ruined her whole career and made her have a baby by this heroine addict!! Plus she thinks she might be pregnant again.I just want to ask a few questions about this.
She has been talking and staying with me the last few nights which is kind of awkward, it makes me a bit happy but then i also feel like she might be trying to just use me!! Tell me what do you think about it.

Jan 16, 2013
My terrible life of love
by: Anonymous

I met this beautiful smart intelligent young girl, years ago back in our childhood around 17 years young! She was my everything and my only and longest relationship! I really did love her dearly. We both were heavy users of marajuana.We even eventually got into smoking with her father. I felt terrible while she had a nice car and a job and was helping support my habits for along time.Things got way out of hand over the months i started trying to sell & look for a job etc. to keep her happy and make her actually stick by my side and feel like she was loved! Over time we started stealing from one another!! I was alot worse because she had everything, i had nothing. I would steal bowls of her stuff at a time! Eventually she started doing the same thing back to me. It was like me living as a child with a brother or sister!! You get so attached you beat each other up, cry, whine, slap, whatever. Well one day i flipped out when i had a sack missing which was enough to get me to re-up. I flipped out went into the bathroom that morning scolded her, even threw her down in the shower and she cut herself. She told me she was done, i felt so terrible and was so sad of what i did.She even filed to put a restraining order on me because her parents told her too. Everyone wanted to beat my ass. Years later about 2 months ago we have been talking on facebook! I have told her lets get together and goto the movies or out to dinner or whatever! She agreed, well i tried for them 2 months but eventually i got her to come over and drink a bottle with me. She started flipping and crying about how her life is so crappy and her baby dad is a piece of crap and flipped out on me about how she loved me so badly she did all the wrong things and it made me feel sooo bad.

Sep 16, 2012
Love yourself
by: Anonymous

You know what's weird about loving an addict, is you feel so damn guilty about making the right choices. And do you know why we feel so guilty, because it's what we haven't done before.

We have let them manipulate us. We've let them steal from us. We've let them put us into debt. We've given them 3rd and 4th chances. We've let them cheat on us. We've put our lives aside trying to save their lives. We've lost who we are for them.

So when we finally put our foots down, we feel guilty. Not because we don't deserve to put our foots down, but because we feel as if we're betraying them. But all along we have been betraying ourselves for them.

It's weird how we can care for everyone else, but the moment we start caring for ourselves we feel guilty

Dec 24, 2010
A dated a Heroin addict for 4 years
by: Anonymous

I was with a Heroin addict for 4 years, he was my first love!I treid everything to help him and get him clean, but i lost myself and family!I never tried heroin but i tried other drugs just so i could see what it was like!Drugs was not me! I want him to get clean so bad,i did then and i do now, he went to jail and rehab and relapsed, and i realized hes never going to change unless he wants too!Heroin is a stong drug,I do believe people can change if they get help and support, but its not about them, Its about you and doing whats right for yourself, i have a new boyfriend now who treats me so good, i still find myself thinking about my ex, but thats normal, your never going to forget someone, its just how you respond to certain memeories!The pain is still there, but i know im in a better place now, i just gotta keep moving forward, even if my ex got clean, i wouldnt trust him cuz he lied so many times!But i dont hate him, everything we go through in life makes us stronger!I hope for nothing but the best! Everyone has a Story so dont judge a person by there cover!

Thankyou Brittney

Mar 02, 2010
I'm clean..... and u can b 2
by: Anonymous

i was an addict for ten years.. overdosed more then i can count. did whatever it took to get the "stuff" i wacked it into my arm... and didn't care if i lived or died. as long as i was high,, i was okay.
i got clean and have stayed clean for a very long time... a very very long time.. no desire to go back.
if you want to find out how i did it, visit my website
and remember .. it worked....

Feb 09, 2010
its all understandable
by: Anonymous

heyy its okay. my mom is a heroin addict, and it is tearing me apart. At once I thought that she was clean because that is what she was telling me and like you no how you want to belive them but you just cant. yea it is hard. I found out she is still doing it. I am 15 and I feel like I am living a 20 year olds life. I am mature but way to mature for my age. I am confused I have stayed strong for way to long. you only can stay strong for so long. I feel like giving up. I am not going to. please if anyone has any help. just message me at I would appreciate it.
thank you
pray for my mom

Oct 06, 2009
Same boat
by: Anonymous

I understand exactly what your going through! My ex- is also a heroin addict, started by smoking it and now injects about 3 times a day, it's been almost a year now. I'm the only one who knows of his affliction and am also confused as to what my next move should be. His family are not the understanding bunch and have already gone through 1 previous addiction phase (amphetamines & methadone) he doesn't want me to tell his family because it will "stir never ending problems" and might even get him kicked out from the house.

I'm caught between leaving him be & telling a family member.

Sep 29, 2009
Addicted Loved One
by: Dad & Mom

We are dealing with a child that is addicted to heroin and oxy. It is a terrible struggle for any loved one.

If you would like to read about our daily struggle you can find us at our blog "An Addict I Our Son's Bedroom"

Sep 21, 2009
Heroin is a Killer
by: Anonymous

Heroin is such a dangerous and destructive drug that anyone who goes near it is playing with their life. Your ex-boyfriend needs help urgently. You don't just beat Heroin by yourself. He needs to go into treatment, get himself properly detoxed, and then begin the process of healing on all levels. I hope and pray that he has the sense and courage to ask for, and get proper help before it's too late.
Can you not speak to his parents about what is happening - because they can at least insist he gets the necessary treatment?

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