From1-2-1: Even in Dark & Lonely Times, Amanda Still has Recovery

I have been sober for 3 months now. I have learned a great deal about myself and why I started using in the first place.  Many of my problems revolve around my relationship with my family.  It’s not good.  Let’s just say that it’s not the typical relationship that you would have with your family.  I’m not close with my mom nor my dad. My mom and I always fought each other and basically never got along.  In fact, I still seem to get jealous of other people’s relationships with their moms.  It’s like, I wish I had that.  She would always put me down and make me feel like I was nothing.  To make matters worse, today she makes me feel like I am a horrible mother.  The sad thing is, she does not even know I’m an addict.  I feel irrelevant to her.

My grandparents and I have always been really close, that is up until recently. They couldn’t care any less now. I get yelled at, called names and put down. I feel so alone.  I have no family member to whom I can run and spill my heart’s deepest, dimmest inclinations.  It was starting to seem as though everyone to whom I was related wanted me to feel tremendous amounts of guilt for every single past mistake I’d made, like I was the worst person in the world.
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I suppose it’s only logical that I found that heroin took all of those uncomfortable but unfortunately all too familiar emotions away.  It just allowed me to forget about every bad thing that existed in my life. It comforted me and made me feel okay. To be specific, it took the place of my family members and it was always there for me. Since I’ve become sober, those feelings have returned and I do find myself feeling very depressed lately. I’m not going to lie, I have thought about using again because of it. But I haven’t. I am trying to deal with my problems head-on and try to not let them bother me.

I am alone in so many ways as a recovering addict, since I can’t even tell my family I was a heroin addict. They would hate me even more than they do now. I have to lie about going to my [mandatory support] groups. I have to hide my NA keychains that I carry around with pride most of the time. It’s a horrible feeling. Honestly, it will never get better (at least it feels that way). I just have to find a sober way of dealing with it. I’m so grateful to the family I have made for my own since I would otherwise just plummet deeper into active addiction.
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I have awful social anxiety as well.  Honestly, it’s a very difficult road for me because it’s so hard to open up to anyone. Heroin made me feel alive- like I could do anything in the world… I could talk to anyone…  I could start up a conversation with a stranger, but now I feel I can’t talk. I feel paralyzed most of the time. I hate the feeling of “all eyes on me.” 3 months of sobriety and I’m learning so much about myself.  As you can clearly see, it’s not pretty.  In fact, it probably seems bleak currently.  The one takeaway, however, is that I am still committed to my sobriety via a life of recovery.  I am trying to do everything I can to get through life’s nasty hurdles- just one day at a time.

~Amanda
Regular CAA Contributor & Proud Addict-in-Recovery
[Pronouns: She, her, hers]

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