9 years crashing down
I am having a bit of an identity crisis in my life due to several failed relationships over the last few years. I have battled addiction to tobacco and marijauna over the course of the last 9 years and it somewhat became my identity. I was lost. I let go of old friends and became a single person that only considers my needs first. I am 31 years old and feel like I should not be going through this now, but here I am.
I was dating a woman of a different cultural background for the last two years and it ended unexpectedly. The strange part is that I was not particularly happy for most of the relationship, but I am taking it incredibly hard. I met tons of great people through this woman, but irreconcilable differences ultimately destroyed what we built. In the beginning, I fell hard for this woman and it all moved along very quickly. We were practically a married couple within a month. Lots of red flags presented themselves to both of us, but we ignored them because we were so into each other. When the infatuation phase ended, I began to pull back due to some major differences that we had. I am white and she is Asian and certain expectations could not be delivered. It tore me up at the time because I knew that we would not ultimately get married, but I could not let go. The relationship dragged on for probably a year and a half after these realizations. I turned to an all familiar demon, weed. It helped me cope with the disappointment of the relationship. And I smoked A LOT. I was still able to function highly at work and around her, but the pain was just too much to bear being sober. She had just come out of a relationship within a few months of dating and was attempting to be single and date me at the same time. It was difficult because I wanted her to be happy with her friends and be exclusive with me. I tried to play along and deal with it. I found myself drawing back on a few memories we built early on to keep trucking along and avoid the inevitable breakup. I even tried breaking up after less than a year, but she started crying and I couldn't deal with her in pain. Looking back, I feel like I should have been selfish there, but I was too concerned with her feelings and not my own. We pressed on and things were great again....for awhile. Then back to the problems. On 11/5/2016 she initiated the break. It was incredibly hard to do for her and I know this. She was a mess. Crying non stop all the way to the parking lot afterwards. I said what I felt was okay to say and I did my best to console her and get her on her way. I actually felt okay afterwards because I still had my weed and knew I could cope with the loss. I did...for another week. Then it all came crashing down. Not only the loss of her and what we built, but the loss of pretty much my last three gfs due to my abuse of the substance. I vowed on 11/12/16 to never touch the substance again. Yes I've done this before, but this time feels different. I'm ready to move on with my life without this wrecking it anymore. I don't want to be dependent on a substance to get through emotional trauma. Due to my abuse over the last nine years, I feel as if I haven't developed the necessary mental and emotional strength to deal with loss and trauma. It's been very tough the last couple days. Once that clarity comes back and you realize what you have done and what you have lost, it's quite possibly the worst feeling in the world.
I know that we had major cultural and personality differences and that's what made me pull back, but I also know that it could have been dealt with had I not turned to my comfort substance to numb out the pain. I'm pretty devastated right now dealing with this. It feels like my world is crashing before me and I have actually accomplished a lot in my life. How do I pick up the pieces and move on? I'm having trouble eating and sometimes dry heaving over the toilet even when I haven't eaten much. Is this what I get? Is this what comes around for all the time I spent high and shut the world out? I am lost.
Hopefully someone with more experience with quitting weed and cigarettes can help you out here, but I thought I'd mention a couple of things..
I've heard a saying about "hitting rock bottom" and it sounds like you are there. It's okay to be there. Let yourself feel the despair and anguish and misery, but don't drag it out and wallow. It really sounds like you are at a turning point and that things will improve dramatically as time goes on. It's just going to suck for awhile.
Check into Marijuana Anonymous, getting a therapist, and/or going to the library and browsing the self help and addiction books. You will need support, because addictions can be hard to overcome. Meditate. Sit with your feelings and just be. Maybe start volunteering somewhere, if you feel up to it.
As far as your relationship goes, it sounds like she was breaking up with the addicted you, not the real you. You never know how things work out, but for now getting sober and identifying what you want in life and love probably needs to come first.
My emotions were pretty raw when I wrote that so re reading it sounds pretty edgy. The mornings always seem the hardest and once I eat something during the day, things seem to be okay for the most part. Your absolutely right about the "addicted me" comment. But that begs the question: If I really felt that way about her, why did I feel the need to self-medicate?
All the things she was upset about are all things I would normally do in a relationship. Cuddle after sex, lay around talking, just little things. Those are the things that got away and since she is a few years younger than me, she probably felt some pressure to cut ties and try to find someone without issues similar to mine. We had a poor foundation to begin our relationship (one of the red flags I looked past) and just as I felt about it then, I am feeling that now seemingly x10. It's a learning experience. A time to grow as a man. Weed isn't the worst choice in the world, but abuse of any substance can take you to a dark place. I'm not angry or mad. I truly want her to be happy and I don't regret anything. I have good friends and co-workers that I've vented to and it does help. My main purpose of posting that was to just get it out and be honest with myself. It feels good to do that.
I don't really feel that I'm at the point where I need professional help. I just need to take things one day at a time and remove any and all contact from the ex. I've been through these deals before and I'll get through it again. Thanks for the reply.
It's getting a lot better. Accepting the shame and guilt is the hardest part, but my body chemistry appears to be stabilizing and it's just going to be up to me to build that mental and emotional fortitude to make this last. That is my journey. This will likely be the hardest thing that I ever do in life. For those reading and going through something similar, keep your head up, and keep pressing on. Have a great day!
So glad you're feeling better. It is a turning point and an adventure. Good luck to you.