The raw grief of losing the love of my life to addiction

by Emily

I lost my boyfriend, Benjamin on August 9, 2019 to his battle with addiction–IV coke and meth.

I won’t go through our three years together because it’s not important. But as someone who loves an addict we all know how difficult, sad, lonely, lost, confused and broken we all are watching someone we love completely become a shell of themselves. Being one person, and then hours later becoming a completely different person. Going through the cycle over and over.

The longest he was clean in the last three years was 30 days. Although, he’d been using 5 years before we met. However, it did not change that I knew he was the one the second I met him. The person inside is something someone only dreams of. The “clean Jonathan” was something unimaginable. His smile, his laugh, his way of loving me was something I will never be able to explain.

We went through a lot. A lot of ups and downs.

But I knew and I held on to the Jonathan that was inside because when I saw that Jonathan I was consumed by him. How much someone could change my life? He loved me and our girls. We have a cat and recently got a puppy.

I tried to hold on to the words he would tell me, the love he had for me, the promises he made me, his plans for our future, the apologies and how he was going to do everything for our little family.

But weeks later, his addiction would take control again

It destroyed us. It destroyed him. It destroyed me. It destroyed everything.

But days later my Jonathan was back. Then days later the cycle would start again. In July of this year, I made a decision that he could not continue to live with me. Because I did not see the cycle improving. I was defeated and while I was not leaving him I did need space. I needed him to be able to stay at his apartment for a night while I had some time to try to put my pieces back together.

And I needed him to be able to let me do this. To stay sober and clean for a night. Because I was losing control. And I knew that if I couldn’t put myself back together that there was no way I was going to make or help him. I still couldn’t save him. He completely lost it and hated the decision I made.

During the month of July, he lost another job and was spiraling out of control and I couldn’t stop. We saw each other when he was sober. I wouldn’t allow him in if he was high. That was my boundary.

He decided on August 1, he was going to move across the state for a new job starting August 5. I was proud of him. It was such a good opportunity. Even though I didn’t want him to leave, maybe he needed to go there and really see what the world has to offer outside of this crappy town we lived in–to see that he could do this for himself.

He didn’t know anyone and he could focus on this job and being the Jonathan that was inside. We promised each other we would make it through this and that distance didn’t matter. We would see each other every weekend.

I should have never let him leave

I should have told him he could stay here. I should have never been so weak-minded to think this was a good thing.

My biggest regret.

That week he moved I had no idea he was using. Looking back, I see it now. I couldn’t pay attention to all the texts. Tuesday night he went to a bar and got completely hammered and said some really hurtful things which upset me. I was already downing and at that point wasn’t coming up for air.

Looking back, I could see in his text on Wednesday that that’s when it started. I could have been nicer to him that day. Thursday came and he was all over the place. He was asking so much of me and I couldn’t give him what he was asking. I never got to tell him I loved him that Thursday.

He sent his last text to me at 10:47pm but I was already asleep

It was a normal nightly text so nothing I would be concerned about the next day. I should have told him I loved him. And I can’t tell you why I didn’t other than reading them now they are so far out there.

It’s my second biggest regret. Not telling him I loved him his last day here. Not seeing the signs. Not trying to explain my love for him one more time. Not trying to make him understand that he could do this.

On Friday, August 9, I didn’t get a good morning text. Immediately, my heart sank and I knew something was wrong. It took me hours because I didn’t even know where he was staying, just photos of the place. Eventually, I got in touch with the cleaning lady and ten minutes later she called me back said he was in bed and unresponsive. She called 911 and they were on the way.

I jumped in my car and started driving and 45 minutes later the cleaning lady called back and told me they couldn’t save him. There was nothing they could do. There was nothing anyone could do. And I just kept telling her they have to do something. They have to save him. They have to bring him back.

That phone called changed my life

It destroyed me. It took away everything I tried to be strong for. Everything I tried to save. Everything I held on to for dear life. Everything I loved so deeply.

Weeks later, the toxicology report came back and the cocaine he got was laced with fentanyl.

He had no idea. He had no clue that he wouldn’t wake up that Friday morning. He didn’t want to die, he loved life, he always talked about our future. He would never had intentionally left me and the girls.

He didn’t mean for this to happen. It was just supposes to be another “one more time.”

But that one more time took everything from us

As I sit here bawling my eyes out, I pray that he’s at peace. I pray he knew I loved him more than anything in his world. I pray he is watching over me and our girls. And I pray he knew, that even in my weakest moments, I still would pray for him to see there was something so much beautiful to live for.

“I love you my sweet angel. Until I see you again.”

4 thoughts on “The raw grief of losing the love of my life to addiction”

  1. Emily, you sweet woman, he knew your love for him. If I can feel it by just reading this post then I am certain…beyond any doubt…that he knew how much you loved him. Clearly he loved you and your family so very much as well. I hope that you will continue to connect with people who support you with compassion and understanding. I am sending you love.

  2. Emily, your Ben is at peace. I regret not kissing my son goodnight, the night he left us. We all do the best we can at the time- hindsight is 20/20. I’m so sorry for your loss- I pray you find peace.

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