When he’s says he wants help but relapses?



Hello village ,

Here I am again, my safe place to come to when things get really bad .

My husband relapsed again … 5th time this year.
This is the tricky part… he says he wants help , he says he’s “found a place “ For meetings , rehab, etc .
We never go because in the midst of it life gets so jam packed .the hamster wheel keeps turning and turning and we live life just like we used before addiction came crashing in and for a moment it seems like we are gonna beat this … and then the dark comes like a heavy blanket .
And to be honest ,maybe I’m naive but , I believe him when he tells me he’s ok and to trust him.

But here I am again, foolishly writing this from my bathroom as I noticed he came home high.

This time there was no screaming , just my patience holding his hand asking him “are you on cocaine?”
And the long jaw clenching , eye shifting pause of a yes .

I’m at the end of my rope , I’ve Listend to podcasts , read many of your stories and articles and books and tried to get him to go to a meeting or rehab… but here we are in the darkness of a relapse .

Is anyone out there ?


Thanks so much for sharing @Honorableteacup - I can relate.
My husband’s drug of choice was also cocaine. And part of the reason I created this community was to unearth these stories in which we can find commonality.

There’s not a lot of clarity about the long term recovery process. So I’ll share from my experience, because through collective shared experiences we can see patterns.

In my husband’s first year post-rehab he slipped up a lot and in the 5 years proceeding it has been less and less, only last year was the first he didn’t have a slip and told me that the voice in his head telling him to use had become quiet enough that he didn’t need to actively manage it. WOW.

When it comes to relapses or slips - I’ve found there are a few helpful thought processes to go through.

  1. Take extra care of me because I will feel disappointment
  2. Help them remember how well they have been doing and how far they have come
  3. See it as a sign that something has not been working, or that more support is needed (what can we learn from this?)
  4. Take note of the duration to assess how severe the slip was
  5. Ask - how can I help?

Sending lots of love. And I’d love to invite you to join our group online meetup tonight (Feb 5, 6pm EST) where we can talk and share more skills that are proven to help, RSVP HERE


@Honorableteacup - I see so much progress in your story, and that’s amazing.

It can often be so hard for our loved ones to even admit they need help, because they may be scared of what change means or looks like. Recovery is painful, messy, hard work. It makes a person face all of the crap and feelings they’ve been avoiding by using drugs or alcohol. Your husband is open to at least thinking about it. That’s a step. That’s progress.

Your reaction was calm and loving. I’m sure you’ve screamed enough to learn that that type of negative reaction doesn’t help, but often just makes things worse. That probably made it much easier for your husband to respond in a positive way: with truth. Hold on to that truth.

It may not seem like progress, but you and your husband are moving forward. It’s a slow process. My husband is a recovering heroin addict and I can relate to the exhaustion you feel when he slips again and again. What helped me was going to my own therapist - a certified substance abuse counselor who specifically worked with people suffering from addiction and their families. She taught me about creating my own boundaries, and because she worked with so many people who have recovered, she gave me hope. I know professional therapy isn’t always a viable option for everyone. However, this forum offers coaching services - you can book a session with Erica, the Village Coach, who is a professional in the field and trained to help families communicate better, navigate active addiction and recovery, etc.

Remember: Progress, not perfection. Celebrate the small wins. Recovery is possible.