My friends don't know my boyfriend, we'll call him "Ken," is an addict and going through rehab. It's not the kind of thing you can tell just anyone. Friends, bless them, tend to talk to each other and before you know it everyone is up in your biz.
Abusing narcotics is dangerous and socially even more unacceptable than alcoholism. Ken's struggle is very personal and he doesn't want everyone to think of him as a screw-up. I get that, but sometimes it is hard for me to deal with everything on my own. From time to time I need to talk things out to settle my thoughts and reaffirm that I am sane.
My mother knows of Ken's problems. However, it is not appropriate for my mother to know the details of my relationship. They say mothers have trouble forgetting the bad things people do to their children and that's usually what they end up hearing about most. If this is going to work, I don't want to have to defend my decisions or Ken to my mother. I can't and don't want to talk to her about the small disputes Ken and I have over whether or not he should smoke pot after he's done with rehab. I can't explain to her all the aspects of withdrawal and their affects on me. If she knows too much, she feels like she needs to ask questions and worry. Her questions just upset me and her worry does me no good.
I'm thinking I need to spend more time talking to a friend or two that don't live here. I need to talk to someone and if they blab a little to people that don't know us it's not the end of the world. I frequently find myself wondering if in the end it will have all been worth it. It's painful, but if I run from every relationship challenge, I'll end up with no one to share my life with.
The friends, family and especially significant other of an addict are isolated from their support systems when they need them the most.