Grieving the loss of my ex husband from addiction

Discussion in 'Loss from Substance Abuse' started by Msteele, Mar 16, 2021.

  1. Msteele

    Msteele New Member

    My ex husband died of addiction February 2021. We knew each other for more than 20 years. We have a child who is 11. Although we were divorced for a while I still and will always love him. He was my soulmate. Addiction took him from me and everyone else. He got so lost in it for so long he couldn’t find his way out. Ultimately it was up to him but his body and mind just couldn’t bear it any longer.
    My nightmare has come true.

    Now I am struggling with complicated feelings that most family and friends don’t understand. I feel angry, guilty, and extremely sad for loosing the hope. I will miss him.

    Since we are divorced most people have not reached out and since addiction is so stigmatized most people don’t know what to say or do. So it has been isolating and lonely. I guess I expected more from family and friends. Most people texted me and then a week later nothing. I know people just don’t know what to say but it hurts. Some are resentful for everything and don’t realize addiction is a disease and are not capable of compassion for the addict. That hurts.

    His family is planning a memorial in June. That seems so far away for me, I need to plan something small for myself and my son and a few family members
    *if anyone has any ideas let me know

    I hope you all can find some sliver of peace today.
    Chris M 2000 likes this.
  2. Scorp7

    Scorp7 New Member

    Hi there, newbie on here but I feel your pain reading this post. I just wanted to share an idea for yourself and your sons memorial to your loved one. I realise he was deep in addiction but did he maintain, if only ad hoc, a hobby or interest specifically one that would only mean something regarding both of yourselves and the connection it had with him? Im thinking along lines of a favourite item of clothes or shoes, styling or toiletry products, tv or radio show, music style or artist etc. Something that is unique to the relationship you had insignificant when or how small you think of it as.
    My reasoning is thus.... My husband died unexpectedly beginning of March 2021 and was not at home with us. Typical of the chaos substance abuse filters into a family; we were seperated from the previous December but only in regards to the living arrangements. He had been very unstable and unsafe for himself as well as me and the children. We still had a very loving relationship with video calls and contact; he was waiting to attend court at the end of April and sorting his issues out and we agreed to do this for sake of childrens wellbeing. They were very happy and got to see the best of him so the sacrifice we thought was worthwhile. He was staying at his sisters but due to her own drug use, kicked him out and he was staying with his father for almost 3 weeks. I got a "friend" of the family at my door at 10.30am, I went and identified him and he was already showing rigor, but was in bed and seems he had been dead at least 6 or 7 hours.
    Still dont know cause of death, and because of delays to the coroners post mortem and my constant questions of the police etc. I only laid him to rest 4 days ago. We were married 7 years. He didn't have much of a relationship with any family really, only his mum who passed last year. Bridges had burned a long time ago, and I never knew him to ask them for anything.... Shows when no one bothered to help us couple of months ago. Ive been alienated, blamed, made insignificant and portrayed to not be grieving because we were "split up". Yet I was his wife and legally decisions were final to me. I was fair as to include music and passages at his funeral to respect his family, and as to allow them to visit our home. Our children, do not know them and he would not want them to on pretences. Of the odd one or two that they know of or recognise again I hope the need to aid their guilts will not be at their expense. My husband was step dad to my 12yr old son, and we have a 4yr old boy and 3yr old girl. Ive no idea yet what claims are going to be on his ashes. So, for us, at home, I am going to do this small memorial. He was camo gear mad and hunted with dogs and rifles, kept livestock to hunt and had a gift of nurturing wild animals. Walked miles with the kids just enjoying the scenery and taking a ball and sandwiches out etc. Always ate berries and apples or whatever was growing in his path. I had him dressed in his camo gear and flat cap for his cremation. He was always sketching and colouring so im framing an eagle he sketched and placing that in our garden upon a small wooden stool thats carved and inlaid with bone detail (pot plant stand I think). Im placing his nets and pegs over the stool and his wooden walking stick. He had planted few years back a gooseberry plant which he happily munched picking them off soon as they appeared, and I intend to look after it as he would have tried to. Only small, but what I knew was close to his heart and what I know I can keep his memory alive as little ones get older.
    Hope thats helped a little. Regards Tracy.
    Chris M 2000 likes this.
  3. Msteele

    Msteele New Member

    Thank you for sharing this, it is helpful to know I’m not alone. I’m sorry you had to go through this. I like the ideas you shared very personal and sweet. I wish you and your kids peace .
    Chris M 2000 likes this.
  4. Sherih

    Sherih New Member

    Hello I just wanted to reach out abs say sorry for your loss. I just lost my ex husband as well 3 days ago. We have a daughter that’s is 18. I have not seen my ex for 16 years but our daughter and her dad had a good relationship over text and FaceTime. For the last 8 years . He lived in a different state. He was still close to her . We r going to where he lived to spend time with family and so my daughter can get some of her dads stuff. It’s heart braking to watch her go through the pain. I’m heart broken as well he was my first husband. I’m here if you like to talk
    Chris M 2000 likes this.
  5. Queenj9v

    Queenj9v New Member

    I’m so sorry for your loss. Every word of your post was so incredibly familiar. Except my ex husband has not passed away. He chooses the drugs and the streets and has had zero contact with his children in over 3 years. Just stopped calling, texting, coming around. He’s been in and out of jail. Rides a bike and bounces from couch to tent to who knows where. I feel like I’m holding my breath. Like I cannot exhale until I know he’s either decided to get himself help and try, or if the sirens I hear or the knock at out door is the authorities telling me he’s gone. It’s the absolute worst feeling. Yet I gather my wits and do everything I can to keep myself and my kids moving forward. They are ages 16 and 13 and so hurt by this horrible disease.

    it’s not the same as a loved one dying, but the grief is certainly the same. Losing someone (or the way he used to be) to the pain they medicate so they don’t have to feel when they are using.
    Chris M 2000 likes this.
  6. Chris M 2000

    Chris M 2000 Well-Known Member

    Sorry for your loss.
  7. Chris M 2000

    Chris M 2000 Well-Known Member

    I understand c

    ompletely. Thanks for trying to keep your wits and keep yourself and your kids moving forward. In some ways it is like a slow death.
    Don't forget to include God in your formula. He loves your ex husband you and the kids more than you can know. Call on Him and He can give you strength and peace in the midst of the terrible storm you are going through.
  8. DMarie937

    DMarie937 New Member

    Hello, your story has totally resonated with me. I am so sorry for your loss. I lost me ex-husband 4 weeks ago. We share a beautiful 15 year old boy. My ex WAS and IS the love of my life. I had to divorce to protect our son. We have known each other since 3rd grade. We attended different high schools and became reconnected in our 20’s. I dedicated most of our relationship trying to “save him”. In the end, he was completely gone. The man that I fell in love with became an emotionless, non-sensical, dangerous human being. I had no choice. It broke my heart these past 10 years watching him deteriorate year after year. Making horrible and disgusting decisions. Like, who is this man?? He loved our son more than anything. He just couldn’t keep it together. Now, my worst fear has come true. He was found dead in a small 8x10 room. He lay there for 4 days before being found. My son and I have his ashes. We had a beautiful memorial for him. While life is moving forward, I’m stuck. I’ve never felt grief like this. I’m a total mess. My friends/family (in-laws too) all know and understand the sorrow I am feeling. But, I have definitely come across comments like “ok, time to move on”. Not as blunt but in a roundabout way. I have been in my current relationship for 8 years. He knows how much I love my ex and is not challenging me. But, I’m slowly getting the feeling that he feels I should move on. Well, I can’t. And frankly, I’ll forever have a piece of my heart mourning him. I’m going through the process: did I do enough? Should I have stayed married? Did he love me still?? Does he know how much I loved him? I have been left with zero closure…. Thanks for reading
  9. Roxi

    Roxi Member

    Yes DMarie...he surely loves you and his son! But addiction is a terrible monster that ruined everything!
    I lost my love for addiction too...he was my best joy and my awful pain in my life! But i know he loves me...it's just that addiction overwhelmed him...!
    Hope you can find some comfort here...i know how terrible is your pain!