What do you do when you can’t get over the anxiety and fear that your husband might betray you?
I have, on the surface, a perfect marriage. We have a beautiful daughter. We have a lovely home. But I spend every day dealing with a fear that my husband may not be able to fight his demons and be too weak and take prescription painkillers (opiates).
It started in February 2005. He became ill and went on the painkillers (doctor prescribed) as a result. But he got hooked and after the doctor stopped filling his prescription, he secretly bought them online. Then he faked a back injury to get pills at the hospital. And finally, he came clean to me in June of that year. He said the pills got rid of his social anxiety. Made him feel like he was Superman at work. Made him feel “on top of his game.” I felt so betrayed and so angry.
He went to a shrink. Got on anxiety meds. He took a urine drug test whenever I asked, to help me feel secure. And I guess I got over it, at the time. Time passed, things were great, and we had a child.
Then, last year. He had to have surgery on his leg. Serious surgery, and he needed pain meds. I kept the bottle and dispensed them to him. Things seemed okay, but then he began having major stomach issues, unrelated to the leg surgery. We’re talking pain that landed him in the ER over and over again. After months of doctors saying, “I have no idea what’s wrong” they finally removed his gallbladder and viola! He was better! The bad news? He’d been on pain meds (between the leg and stomach issues) for nearly seven months.
After the surgery and some recovery time, I tried to wean him off the meds. He got angry and demanded the pill bottle. He took nearly a whole bottle of meds in a 24 hour period. His anger and irrational behavior scared me, and I realized that months on these meds had made him dependent on the drugs yet again. Even though he wasn’t LYING to me, I felt sick about the whole thing. I felt scared. I realized that these drugs can get a grip on you and never let go.
And now… fast forward to today. It’s been a YEAR since he stopped the drugs (that I know of) and every.single.day I battle fears that he is using some sort of opiates. My husband has taken drug tests whenever I ask, and they have always been negative. He offered to go on a drug that would make him ill if he took opiates. He tries to understand why I live in fear of this, but I can tell he gets frustrated. I do feel like he makes an effort to help me feel secure, but it’s not working.
EVERY DAY I look in his eyes and evaluate his pupils. Do they look super-small (a sign of opiate abuse)? Do they look huge (a sign of withdrawal)? My whole goddamned life revolves around this FEAR I have of being betrayed and of him getting hooked on something that will ruin our life. I obviously don’t trust my husband… I don’t trust that he can fight the possible urge to do those drugs, and I have this NEED to be in CONTROL. To be VIGILANT. To KNOW if something is wrong. It’s like I REFUSE to be betrayed again, to be a FOOL who has no idea what is going on. But my hyper-vigilance is ruining me.
It’s going to ruin my life and my marriage. Already, I feel numb and I feel like I am letting happiness pass me by, because I am so obsessed with this. I just don’t know what to do. I’m going to a therapist but so far I haven’t seen any difference in my feelings.