General Question

Trillian's avatar

I need advice quickly. (See details)

Asked by Trillian (21116points) April 5th, 2010

Some of you may know a bit about this. I left my SO last August because of his addiction to drugs. Oxycontin. He continued to go downhill and blamed it on my leaving but really there was nothing I could do to stop it. He became homeless in January. No one will let him stay with them. I let him in to my house in February because he had literally nowhere to go, and god help me, I can’t help feeling love and pity for him. The one shelter here booted him out for missing a meeting with a social worker. I put him out last Friday after watching the whole thing start again with the lies, drugs, other women, crap with my internet connection. He went to a motel. Tonight he called me crying. He has never cried before. He says he isn’t going to make it, that there is no reason to try.
I hate to be cold blooded and I’ve abbreviated this a lot. You don’t even want to know all the horrible things he said to me about my person and my character when he left Friday and actually even before that.
Should I just let him sink or swim? Do I go and try to get him some help? This is beyond my skills and resources to fix on my own. i want him to be under professional care, but you know, he closely matches the description of malignant narcissist in another thread from today. I hate being manipulated but don’t want his death on my conscience.
Please advise me. I’m too close to this to be objective.

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44 Answers

tinyfaery's avatar

Try to get him put into protective custody. They will put him on a hold and he can get help. Though, I’m not sure this is available in all states.

Or convince him to put himself on a hold. But he can walk out at any time if he goes in willingly.

escapedone7's avatar

You can inform him if he goes to any emergency room and asks for an emergency psych evaluation, counselors from county mental health will come immediately and do an assessment. If he needs hospitalized they will transfer him to either a rehab or psych hospital. If he prefers outpatient treatment and they feel he is safe enough for that, he may end up with appointments with mental health. The county mental health will have social workers, counselors, professionals ready and willing to help him as long as he wants help. Perhaps give them the emergency number to the county mental health agency. The hosptial ER should have it on hand.

Jeruba's avatar

He needs detox. A hospital or a detox facility. You can’t do this. But you can locate a facility near you and ask him if he’s willing to go there.

chyna's avatar

Whatever you decide to do, my heart goes out to you.

MrGV's avatar

Ignore him.

Trillian's avatar

@escapedone7 Thanks. He knows about the ER thing, He’s been that route and has always left before any definitive treatment could happen. I think I may call him back and tell him to go to the ER.
@jeruba. He is not willing. There is a waiting list for one like 6 months but I can get him in now, I work for the organization. He refuses. He thinks ten months is a long time. I think “What the heck else do you have to do?”
I guess I’m afraid that he really will kill himself and I’ll feel guilty the rest of my life. I cannot allow him back here, and I can’t help him myself. I think he needs to hit rock bottom too and just hope he survives it. He needs to actually feel the full consequences of his decisions and actions. So far, he’s been shielded from them. I can’t do it anymore.
Thank you all. I got called into work for an overtime shift. Thank you jellies. I’ll Lurve you all in the morning!

Axemusica's avatar

@Trillian You have to be strong. He needs to hit rock bottom and hard, because it seems like he hasn’t hit it yet. He needs to see for himself that he’s done these things only to himself. The best thing you can do is refer him to a treatment facility and hope for the best. Otherwise he’s just gonna keep falling.

jbfletcherfan's avatar

I’m obviously not privy to your situation, but just from reading here, I’d have to say…let him sink or swim. He’s dragging YOU down into this mire right along with him. He’s going to keep at you because he knows he can. He knows you’ll weaken. Do him & yourself a favor & make him stand on his own two feet. Protect yourself!!

earthduzt's avatar

After a while there is only so much you can do. Sink and swim becomes the only viable solution. If he doesn’t want help there is no one in the world who will be able to give him help. My twin brother got hooked on drugs for 10 years, went in and out of jail. Lied profusely, stole…never admitted to having a problem. We tried interventions, calling the police on him to get him purposely thrown into jail. He would clean up for that amount of time and then after he’s dine “acting good” he would get right back into it. Our family finally said enough is enough, all support to and for him stopped. He became homeless, and doing stuff to unmentionable to name here for money. He finally basically crawled back home crying and admitting he has a problem and genuinely needed help. He now owns his own business doing what he loves to do, running a soccer training camp.

Captain_Fantasy's avatar

Move on lest you want to get dragged down too.
Some guys want to sink.

plethora's avatar

Listen to @jbfletcherfan and @earthduzt especially…..

gemiwing's avatar

I agree that it sounds like he’s just about to hit bottom- and that’s where the change begins. ER, psych eval time. If there is a detox center by you- offer to take him. That’s it. You’ve done enough, you’ve picked him up, cleaned up his mess and that’s plenty.

I will say, in a personal reaction to my own past, my first instinct is to tell him good luck and be done. That’s simply because I didn’t have such a healthy reaction to my own abusers the first time around so this is a bit touchy for me.

Jeruba's avatar

@Trillian, if he is not interested in help, there’s your answer. He’s not serious. When he is, he’ll go. Meanwhile, you can’t save him. The word for that is “no.”

Cruiser's avatar

Pity party time is over! You need to be strong here and he needs you to be brave enough to make him do this for himself. You know what needs to be done here and he has to pick himself up here. Find a close friend to be busy with who can distract you from his misery. It will not be pretty and watching someone you love do this has to be so hard!! Hugs for you @Trillian


@MrGV You’re not serious, right?

Captain_Fantasy's avatar

He’s never cried in front of you. Seriously, you need to cut bait. Harden your heart. Addicts will take advantage of you if you let them because they don’t care about you, they don’t care about themselves, they don’t care about anything but drugs.

You’re in love with the person you want him to be but the person he is will steal from you if he’s jonesing hard enough. You can’t let him close to you for your own safety.

Your best move was breaking up with him.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

I wish I knew – all I keep thinking is ‘I’d do the same as you’ and that’s let him stay with me until we figure something out.

nimarka1's avatar

first of all remember that nothing is ever your fault! i know its hard not to feel bad or sorry for the person but don’t. He is an addict and will do or say anything to get by. My brother was an addict for many years and it wasn’t until this summer we had an intervention (with a pro, who all he does is help families plan interventions, control the situation, and then help the addict go to a good rehab). maybe you should talk to some of his friends, family and have an intervention. This person needs to see the damage that he is doing to others, how he is affecting others (not just him). these people lie, and cheat, and hurt others. and even though it might feel better taking him in what he is doing is not ok, so giving him a roof over his head is supporting him in the wrong kind of way. He has to feel that people still love him and care for him. And like i said before he has to finally open his eyes and see what he does to others. some of my worst memories growing up are of my brother. And all the crap he pulled. Sometimes i felt like he ruined my life, and took happiness away from me, and the whole time he had no idea because addicts are selfish and don’t care about others ever. But remember they are not themselves. he has to get cleaned up.

davidbetterman's avatar

I had a kidney stone last year that hurt like a… well…I went to the ER and was given Demerol. They sent me home with a ‘script for Oxy’s and a filter cone.

I took those Oxy’s like M&M’s everytime the pain started up. Three days later I peed a tiny grain of sand into the filter cone and made myself stop taking the Oxy’s (even though there were several left).

The withdrawal I went through was beyond belief. I have quit several different substances like Coke, smack cigs and alcohol, but nothing compared to this And this after only a few days of use!!!

You said it best @Trillian, “This is beyond my skills and resources to fix on my own. I want him to be under professional care,”

That is exactly what he needs. Otherwise he will drag you down with him…

escapedone7's avatar

He got booted out of the homeless shelter because he ducked meeting a social worker, that was coming there to help him. His running out of the ER in the past before he could get help was also ducking out instead of trying to get help. He knows there is help there if he wants it. He is avoiding said help at all costs. That says to me that he isn’t at all sincere in his regrets or desire to change. I think since he knows where help is when he’s ready to accept it, the ball is in his court. Lock your doors. His tears are a manipulative tactic to guilt you into giving him more. He isn’t sincere.

j0ey's avatar

You obviously care and love him deeply. And you are never going to be able to turn that off. If you don’t continue to stick by him and put up with his shit, I’m pretty sure that the situation is still going to eat you up anyway.

He obviously doesn’t care about himself at all, and is too absorbed in his self hatred to realize that what he is doing is hurting the people that do care about him.

Dealing with drug addicts is so hard…especially when you care about them so deeply. But I think it is important to remember that the horrible manipulate and cruel side of him is the addiction, not him.

Try and get him into a psych hospital, so you know he is safe (he wont be able to escape from there once he’s in). Then at least you won’t have to feel like you’re responsible if he “doesn’t make it”.

One of my best friends was an addict, and it was hard to put up with all the bullshit and abuse….But I kept on thinking, if I was ever in that situation, I would hope someone would stick by me.

Good luck….You are a good person…Just try and take that feeling of ownership of the situation off your back.

Neizvestnaya's avatar

Call a suicide hotline, inform family or other friends where he can be found right now but don’t go there yourself. He’s right where he needs to be to ever be independent- he must sink or swim on his own now.

dpworkin's avatar

My advice is to cut him off completely without a word or a reaction. This is typical junkie manipulative bullshit, and your work is done. You don’t need this anchor weighing you down and he is not your responsibility, but if you don’t make the separation swift, surgical and irrevocable he will continue to try to.use and abuse you, so if I were you, I would already have said my last word to him. If he shows up at your house, call the police. Block his calls, change your passwords, defriend him on any social sites, and get on with your life.

CyanoticWasp's avatar

I second @dpworkin (more like fifth, apparently… but I agree). I would add: get your own counseling after you do that, because obviously you haven’t been able to see what he’s doing to you or to break away from it… and it’s going to hurt you to do what has to be done.

The fact is that he very well may kill himself, intentionally or not. It’s not your fault; it never was. But you need to have the same realization about that—we can’t just tell you and convince you. The counselor can help you find out that truth so that you know it.

It’ll still hurt, though.

Good luck.

phillis's avatar

Trillian, I am truly touched by your emotional plight. You severed the enabling part of your relationship with him, and that takes the kind of guts that most people only dream of having.

I would like you to know that his tears aren’t JUST another manipulation. They are also a prime indication that your own efforts are paying off, SO KEEP DOING WHAT YOU’RE DOING. I know it hurts like hell, and baby, I am right there with you should you want it. I have more respect for you right now than you can possibly imagine. Brilliant work.

If there were more people doing what you are doing now, we could significantly reduce the duration of these behaviors, and everybody would be better for it.

mrrich724's avatar

People suffering from addiction learn how to be manipulative to feed their addiction.

I am sorry, but if you help him, all you are doing is being manipulated into giving him what he wants, and all you are doing is enabling him to continue doing bad.

Coming from someone in a family who deals with addiction, I personally think you are also being selfish by helping him. You’d rather just help him, to make yourself feel better, than do what’s right for him by allowing him to sink or swim.

I know it’s hard, but let it be. That’s the ONLY way that really actually makes any sense if you take the emotion out of it.

MrGV's avatar

@MRSHINYSHOES I am 100% serious; people like that will never learn their mistakes until they realize it themselves.

Judi's avatar

If you think he is suacidal call the police. He is not your responsibility and your compassion could be keeping him from getting the help he needs.
If he does kill himself, it will be his choice. You are not responsible for his decisions.
My first husband DID kill himself and after 20 years I do not blame myself for his choices. It has not been easy, but I know I did everything I could.

Kraigmo's avatar

other women?

How does such a little shit like that get so many women involved with him?

I’m inclined to tell you to Dump him. You’ve allowed him to make contact with you. Big mistake. There should be no explanations. No closures. Just a dump and silent treatment forever. Hangup if he calls. But then again maybe God put you on Earth to rescue him for as long as he needs or wants. And I don’t mean that last sentence there sarcastically

Kraigmo's avatar

P.S. I don’t mean to want to destroy the guy’s life. I think after the 3rd (or 30th if you’re extra kind) same major mistake by a person, the relationship starts to get ridiculous. And the fact he continued to hurt you after you rescued him, and the fact he’s so manipulative… well that just makes me really have no empathy for him. It makes me think he probably really doesn’t care about you or anyone. Maybe i’m wrong, but seems like he’s just a survivor/pleasure seeker and not much else. People really can be that heartless inside, no matter how manipulatively loving they pretend to be.

And my other comment about you possibly being here to help him. That is a possibility. If there is some magic breakthrough in the end, and you are the bridge to it, then cosmic fate overrides what is probably more likely true. But I don’t count on stuff like that except when I know what I’m doing.

luckynikki's avatar

I was going thru sort of a similiar thing with one of my friends. You just have to keep reminding yourself that he makes his own choices and no matter what you do, he will get what he wants some how. Sometimes their not even ready to accept the fact they need help. I know its hard feeling like your responsible for his hard times, but you just have to let him come to terms on his own. You can’t help him if he doesn’t want to meet you somewhere in the middle.

Trillian's avatar

First of all, I’d like to thank each and every one of you who took the time to read and answer me. I hate drama and here I am spilling some like a pail of slops. I spoke with him again when he called last night, then he called back and sounded better and had to go. He said he’d call back but didn’t which did not surprise me. I figured he got some more drugs. So I haven’t answered his call this morning and he’s called several times. I don’t feel compelled to answer.
@tinyfaery That’s probably on the agenda for him. I tried to be his payee for one month, but called SSI on Friday and had my name taken back off. The guy said He’d have to have a case worker now and I can see that in a month or two, if he lives that long, he’ll be committed and made a ward of the state.
@Jeruba and @Axemusica Yes. Thank you both.
@chyna @Cruiser Thank you. ;-)
@gemiwing @Captain_Fantasy @escapedone7 @earthduzt @davidbetterman @dpworkin @CyanoticWasp @mrrich724 @MRSHINYSHOES @Neizvestnaya @nimarka1 @ jb fletcherfan @Joey Agreed, and please know that I don’t ask for advice then blow it off because it isn’t what I want to hear. I will not accept his calls anymore, and will give the remains of his stuff to his case worker when I hear back from the SSI guy. Thanks.
@Judi, I go back and forth between thinking he’s actively suicidal and being manipulative. He knows the hotline number. I’m sorry about your husband.
@phillis Thank you for the very kind and encouraging words.
@luckynikki That’s the bottom line isn’t it? I can’t help him.
@Kraigmo How funny. The other women thing amazes me. I am the only person like me that he knows. All of the females with whom he associates are… to put not too fine a point on it….skanky. Every last one has ripped him pff and used him for his piddling ass government check. All but me. And I’m the one he runs to when it turns out bad, but I thought about this last night and somewhere I just…. I don’t know – lost interest, had enough, did a 180. I think it’s been brewing inside of me for the past few weeks as it became more and more clear that he was not living up to his end of the deal for moving into my home. I realized that I had begun compromising myself again and just finally hit the brakes.
Like I said in my original Q, he matches the description of a Malignant Narcissist from a link in another thread and I just can’t let him jakk up my life anymore.
You’re also right in that he really is a shit.
Thanks everybody. I feel resolved and supported. Lurve to you all!

Strauss's avatar

@Trillian Looks like I got here on the tail end of this episode. Glad to see you’ve come to your own resolution. It sounds like you’ve made some good, hard choices. GOOD ON YOU!

liminal's avatar

I just arrived too. It is nice to hear your resolve! The process of ceasing to be someone’s narcissistic supply is not an easy journey, yet it is one of the greatest gifts you can give your child. I admire you for it.


@MrGV But he needs some sort of intervention, not just total abandonment. Ignoring him won’t rectify the situation.

Jeruba's avatar

@MRSHINYSHOES, yes, he does, but he is the one who has to realize that and seek the help. Trillian is not responsible for him.

phillis's avatar

@MRSHINYSHOES I am in complete agreement with you. How do you make someone go when they are unwilling? It’s hard as hell watching that person sink to thier lowest level, knowing there is nothing you can do for them. As long as you’re not abandoning them, they will tirelessly bobard you with enough guilt to cause you unbelievably immense suffering. I think it’s acceptable to care as much about yourself as you do the person who is addicted.

davidbetterman's avatar


He wiil not accept any help until he realizes he is in need of help. @Trillian cannot help him.
Giving him a place to stay is not helping him. It is hurting her.

Abandoning him is the only way she might save herself. He is useless until he recognizes he needs help.

Until he seeks help, he is just an anchor around her neck..and he will drag her down with him just as surely as the sun rises in the East and sets in the West (or is it the other way around?).

Strauss's avatar

@MRSHINYSHOES Sometimes the “tough” in tough love is watching the loved one sink and hit bottom before the realization hits that help is needed.

Trillian's avatar

Update. I have not allowed him back in my house, though I told him that I would take him to any doctor appointments he needed to go to if he wanted. He still calls and blames me for his life, and just last night he said that it was MF’s like me that would make him kill himself. He’s staying with his sister but still doing the pills whenever he can. I still don’t have it through his head that we’re through. I don’t know how to make it plainer.
Thank you all for the support. It’s still difficult, but loving him is not enough to fix this. He has to love himself.

chyna's avatar

It took a lot of courage for you to do that @Trillian. Stay strong.

Cruiser's avatar

@Trillian You are doing the right thing and I would try and ignore any and all attempts to contact you. Don’t acknowledge them if at all possible. Hopefully he gets the help he needs and you cannot give him the help he needs. Move on and be happy!

plethora's avatar

@Trillian You’re doing the best thing for him and for you. You are not going to get it through his head that you are through. Efforts to explain and make that clear will only pull you back in. @Cruiser is right.

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