My boyfriend changed when he got clean

by Ana

My story is the complete opposite. When I first met my boyfriend he was using, he's been a user for the past 10 years but manages to live his life normally.

I first noticed problems with his family, he's only 23, and parents had kicked him out and I started wondering why. Well he came clean and told me he uses heroin and he's been to rehab 3 times in the past 3 years but he really loves me and is trying to get clean for me and his family.

We dated for six months and he was amazing, always there for me, cared so much, he was always happy, and we thought we were going to have a future together. We even had thoughts of marriage. But of course he had to get clean first.

So on February 26, 2016. He detoxed himself with the help of his family and myself and a lot of Xanax. He had to stay clean for 12 days in order to get the Vivitrol shot which would allow him to be sober for a month and ease the cravings. Well he finally did it and got the shot, and everything went down hill from there.

He is not the same person. He doesn't care about anything. I could call him 50 times and he could have his phone with him but he just doesn't care to answer. He sleeps all day. And I'm pretty sure he's even contemplated cheating on me. We don't see each other unless i show up at his house.

Has this happened to anyone before? I know a lot of people when they get clean it's the best time ever but for us it was the opposite. I feel like he hates me and no matter what I do I cannot get him to care for me or his family. I am an emotional wreck as I feel like he made me fall for him and he feels nothing for me. It's like he left me behind along with dope.

I try so hard everyday for him to care, but I think I just need to move on. I hope he doesn't relapse and I know he needs positive people in his life but when we never communicate it's hard to do, I resent him so much. But I love him more than anything and to be honest I just want to feel okay again, I'm constantly worried.

What should I do?

Comments for My boyfriend changed when he got clean

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He is likely what is called in AA a "dry drunk".
by: Debbie

Dear Ana,

The situation you're describing is fairly common with addiction and addiction recovery. It's WONDERFUL that he is clean but he may be severely depressed, which could be why he originally self-medicated with drugs.

A "dry drunk" isn't using but they are miserable in their recovery and likely make everyone else miserable too. They're not using but they are not fully in recovery from their addiction because they haven't addressed the underlying issues and/or insecurities that caused them to begin using in the first place.

I would highly recommend two things for him

1. A complete psychological assessment to determine why he has no interest in anything. Depression is a VERY illness and should not be taken lightly. If he is depressed he should be on meds and mist importantly having weekly counseling with someone he likes and trusts so that he can work through his issues.

2. He NEEDS to attend a 12-step group daily at AA or NA for 90 days so that he can LEARN how to live a happy, joyous and free life WITHOUT self-medicating. Working the 12 steps is the best antidote to being a "dry drunk" and also the best way to avoid relapse. You should attend Al-anon so that you can work the steps together and try to get back on the same page.

Good Luck,


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