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I AM in Control.org Iowa Adolescents Making Choices to Control Their Future Teen:Health, Relationship, Body and Sexuality
Dec 5

Out of Control

Posted By iamincontrol | December 5, 2013

Teenage girl
By Gina

I’m writing this blog because for a very long time I was NOT in control.  I hope my story will help someone decide to not make the same choices which put me there.

When I was 18, I met the man who would eventually become my husband.  He was sweet and funny, and seemed to think I was amazing! He called me “Beautiful” and “Princess” and was nicer to me than anyone had ever been in my whole life.

For six months we were just friends, because I thought our relationship was so good as it was. I was scared to mess things up by becoming closer.  Eventually I took the plunge.  What I haven’t mentioned is that I really liked to party.  Alcohol tended to make me sick, so I mostly smoked pot.  A lot of pot. It started out just to have a good time, something to do to not be bored. When I was high, everything was interesting, and I could ignore painful emotions.  I used to be very shy, but with weed I was able to open up and share my thoughts, hopes and dreams. Eventually Tom and I moved in together, and I started college.  By this time pot was an indispensable part of my life.  Unfortunately, homework and pot didn’t mix well, and because I was high most of the time, I just didn’t care—I felt good NOW, why worry about later? I eventually got so far behind that I had to drop out.

Once Tom and I moved in together, we found ourselves fighting a good deal of the time.  Money was tight, neither of us knew much about budgeting, and Tom revealed a nasty jealous streak.  I couldn’t mention the name of any male I worked with because Tom would immediately decide I was going to cheat on him with my coworker.  I was a people pleaser, so instead of telling Tom that his constant accusations and keeping close tabs on me was NOT OK, I tried to keep him happy.  I truly loved him—he was the sun and the moon and the stars to me, and I did everything I could to make him happy. I let him make me a virtual prisoner in my home, never going out without him, never staying long at a job because he would get insecure about my coworkers. I ignored my own unhappiness by taking more drugs. Meanwhile, the resentments slowly built up, year after year. This set the pattern for our entire married life.

By the time I left him, fifteen years later, I had two kids and a drug habit that caused me to lose them, my home, my job, my friends, and my self-respect.  Had I not left when I did I would have gone insane or taken my own life.  I would never have gotten to that point if I hadn’t tried to avoid all of my unhappy or uncomfortable feelings with drugs—they eventually took over my life to the point where all I could think about was my next high—when I could do it, where I could get it, how would I get the money. Every waking moment revolved around drugs.

I didn’t start out to be an addict.  Nobody does.  Nobody thinks that they will become addicted, that just happens to other people.  Nobody expects anything other than a good time, but the drugs cloud your brain just enough that you don’t realize you are relying on them until it’s too late. When you find yourself using or drinking so that you won’t have to face unhappy feelings—so that you don’t have to be honest with yourself– that’s when the addiction starts.

I got lucky.  After I got away from my marriage I slowly managed to get clean, then get a job, a house, my kids, and my self-respect.  It took a long time. I still feel guilty about how unavailable I was to my children while I was doing drugs.

This doesn’t have to be your story.  You are in control of staying strong and making the right choices for you.