What if you had been taught your whole life that anyone outside your “Family” can’t be trusted?

Most likely you would generally end up feeling doubtful of others and stay close to the ones who tell you these things. It would especially become an issue as you age, make friends and/or begin dating someone. The barriers to a meaningful, loving relationship include the level of acceptance from “the Family.”

But what happens if you didn’t grow up this way?

What if you didn’t grow up in a Hive of a Family where you are required to win constant Approval?

From the very beginning, I was expected to attend every Family function, party, get-together, Wedding, etc and there was one almost every weekend. Back then, 12 years ago now; I worked every Saturday and late evenings at the Bank. I did this to accelerate my Book of Business and it’s growth by attracting the Clients who worked during the week. Truly successful people don’t have time on the Weekdays to go into the Bank, they go in last minute or on the weekend. I am that type of person who is always busy so it appears as if I’m procrastinating.

To some degree I am, I do make up excuses to put off menial tasks but I try to put something else more important ahead. For example; I am super busy with my 3 small children who demand my attention almost every minute of the 14 hours they require it for. I pull over-time hours with them as well because there is always a 1 in 3 chance one of them will wake up during the night for whatever reason. All in all; Mothers of my privilege are expected to work full-time, raise the kids and look as good as we did in our 20’s.

The bar for me was raised slightly every few months or so. If I wasn’t pregnant or recovering from one; I was in fight or flight mode. The repercussions from my Opiate Addiction, at the time it was at its worst; felt staggering and severe to say the least. This was before I went to Treatment, while pregnant but I thought my life was really over.

I constantly thought to myself; “Um, wow – all that work for nothing just to end up a Drug Addict with 3 kids.”

After that, I literally signed my life away to other people and allowed them full control. I simply didn’t even feel worthy of anything other than being a Mother to my girls. Thank god I held onto that for dear life and used it as a motivator every single day I was away from them at Treatment last Summer.

However looking back, I was being constantly conditioned by the people I thought loved me, to think so lowly of myself because of my inability to stop using Opiates.

All my life, I had really ever known living with someone who constantly put me down.

If I hadn’t been using Opiates and feeling guilty, I doubt I would have stayed in my Marriage as long as I did. I also doubt I would have had 3 kids within 4.5 years while functioning as a Banker full-time while using Opiates every day. If I had been sober during that time, I surely would have made it to the Doctor Appointments I kept making and cancelling. People who are using addictive substances; especially Women, are notorious for ignoring their Reproductive Health.

Even someone who has the best intentions to NOT get pregnant, eventually does if they focus so much attention on their addiction. I also ignored regular Dentist appointments, Oil Changes and eventually, even filing my taxes late. My stuff was all over the place and disorganized. Of course, it took 7 years to get to this state and it wasn’t always like this. That’s why when I came out and admitted my Addiction; it actually ended Friendships I had for years because they couldn’t handle the fact I hid it so well.

Fair enough – it’s a part of Addiction, Recovery and making amends.

You can really only try to make amends and if that person does not accept it; you have to move on. Forcing the issue will only cause more harm. It will not solve the problem but rather widen its scope. Unfortunately, I went into making Amends with the naivety that everyone would forgive me. When I realized after the fact this wasn’t the case, I quickly moved forward because the former me would have built an entirely new resentment about the rejection. Having a bunch of resentment about people, places and things that don’t really affect your day-to-day life can actually ruin your life in the long run.

I’ve realized that the hard way by becoming an Addict myself. Throughout my life I felt resentful about my Dad dying, my Mother and I’s lack of emotional connection, the constant dysfunction and chaos within my Family and of course; my own self and my insecurities. It all grew throughout my life, picking up new resentments along the way as I grew into a Wife and Mother myself. Finally when I had my own Children; namely my first – I expected to hate being a Mother as that’s all I knew growing up.

When that didn’t happen and I actually experienced real, unconditional love for the first time – I felt guilty.


Because it was not enough to keep me sober. Something had to change.

Something; something deep inside under many layers made me so depressed that I continued to use. Sometimes, I would abruptly stop and it would unleash mental and physical hell throughout my body. This would last for at least 2 weeks. This was before the 7 year mark when my Opiate Addiction overtook my life and it was impossible to stop. After the 2 weeks of hell; life would slowly start to improve and I’d feel like myself again. Physically I’d always be craving Opiates but emotionally I felt like it was always better to be sober.

This would last for awhile; a few weeks or months but I’d always go back.

Why would I always go back?

I’ve been on a mission, trying to figure all that out for exactly 2 years now.

What in my life had changed so much in 7 years that it would make me want to kill myself slowly?

It’s been 2 years of intense treatment and recovery with multiple Ayahuasca Ceremonies, 11 weeks away in Rehab, Suboxone treatments, weekly Doctor Visits with Urine Screening and multiple Counsellors with various Agencies. It was not achieved by any one thing or by any other person other than myself and my own strength. It was my determination to gain my true place as the Mother of 3 beautiful girls. It’s the realization that so many people were above me and had power greater than mine when I was an Addict. They had the ability to control so much because I gave them that power.

When you hide an Addiction like mine; the way I did – it catches up with you eventually. You don’t even realize it’s happening at first but as an Addiction progresses, you slowly start to handover your life to the people who hold Emotional Power over you. A co-dependency begins to build where that persons life revolves around you and your behaviour. If you are upset, so are they. If you are happy, they are happy too. However, if you are an addict and a slave to a Pill; that person eventually learns how to manipulate you.

Slowly that person realizes how malleable someone is when they are addicted to drugs.

It became painfully obvious what was really happening when I asked for an official Separation in April 2019. My suspicion that my own Mother and Mother-In Law were priming themselves with the help of my Husband and his Family to take my role in Motherhood away from me. If I continued to put up Boundaries and call people out; I’d be severely restricted on my Access had my Husband been successful in his plot.

November 2018: a few hours after my 3rd was born

From the month after my 3rd daughter was born in November 2018 until I moved out of the house with our kids October 1st this month: the “problem” has always been solely placed on me as the maker. It’s easier that way for all of them because this way, the Women involved who are trying so hard to absolve themselves from being less than stellar parents already, can rally beside my Husband as his saviours. Somehow they gain self-esteem and gratification the more he responds to their attention.

The relationship, or “Triangle” between my Husband, his Mother and my own is essentially a replacement for the former focus – me and my Addiction. My husband and his Mother use their Relationship as a replacement for an Emotional Connection with a Spouse – mutually. Neither of them have Spouses whereas my Mother does.

The narrative to the story would be that I couldn’t hack it as a Mother of 3 because now my “Addiction to Cannabis” was out of control.

That way, my Husband could take the properties he stole from me and the kids while having the support to do it. All because I couldn’t put up with the Dysfunction and Enmeshment of the Family so I asked for Boundaries.

As the shame from Using increases; that person will isolate themselves from their own Family and Friends making it easier for further domination. This doesn’t stop the other person from making sure your Family and Friends know their version of events however.

If that happens and you catch this; run.

Or at the very least, consult Professional Help/Support and start planning your exit. This is one of the VERY early warning signs that I would have paid more attention to, hadn’t some of the stuff being said wasn’t true. The shame and guilt over my inability to stop using was used against me but since I couldn’t stop; I didn’t even try to defend myself. Quite simply, I let my Husband and his Family dominate the narrative about me for several years because my brain wanted to protect my Addiction at all costs.

That’s how severe the disease of Addiction progresses to.

For years I let people I loved and cared about walk all over me and I tiptoed on eggshells around them. In all honesty I just did not feel worthy of their respect in many regards but now that I’m sober and have explained myself personally to each and every one of them; I deserve some compassion. I understand not everyone can have compassion towards an Addict, which is fine but don’t try and destroy them either. In my situation, so many people have been looped in and used to triangulate against me so I feel isolated.

It’s been a long 7 months but an even longer 2 years. I was stripped down to my studs and built back up again so I could gain my place as a Single Mother of 3. If I hadn’t entered a “Recovery” and sought the help I did; I would be dead or still using. By now if I had stayed using, I would surely be on the Streets and graduated to something harder. Drug Addiction does not “fix” itself nor is it ever cured. It is managed by focusing on its triggers and traumas to avoid the human condition that caused us to use in the first place.

The simplicity of “Easy Does It” or even “Keep It Simple” is that Life need not be exhaustive.

In my marriage, I was often driven to my breaking point because I was considered to be “Selfish” if I needed rest. If I needed Self-Care, it had to be done on someone else’s terms. The hobbies I wanted to take up had to match someone else’s expectation of approval. There wasn’t much I could do with autonomy. A simple trip to the Grocery Store alone would trigger a conflict. Moreover, I lacked complete autonomy and independence when it came to how to raise my girls.

Every decision I made was discussed with several of my Husbands Family members so of course different opinions all over. This created conflict on a regular basis because every Mother needs to feel like they are valued, loved and in-control of their Parenting. If I did things differently or not to their approval, there would be a “correction” or unsolicited advice. The desire for everything on the outside to appear normal, perfect and successful exceeded everything else of emotional or sentimental value.

Right now, I am enjoying the freedom and independence separation provides. The need for this in my Recovery has not been validated or respected by the ones I thought loved me the most. However that love came with conditions and if I wanted to exit my place within the “Family;” I could only do so on their terms: significantly – signing over my custodial rights and handing over the bulk of my life savings.

A very significant Court Date is happening next week and I hope to provide an update. I am confident my situation will be assessed fairly, quickly and reasonably. I did not come this far to lose it all; not by a long shot.

My efforts will be recognized for what they are and my actions speak louder than words.

As I neared the end of my stay at House of Friendship in Kitchener last September; the message I received was loud and clear:

The first year of Recovery will be the most difficult; especially if you really work the 12 steps.

Especially if you must deal with your “People, Places and Things.”

The risk for me was heightened because I was pregnant with my 3rd baby, already a Mother of 2, with a very serious Recovery from a very serious Addiction to Prescription Opiates.

To come this far without a Relapse; without even an attempt to manipulate my Recovery so I could use Opiates again – while under going this insane Marital Breakdown is nothing short of a miracle. I was not inclined ever to “go back,” in fact I ran in the total opposite direction and it has saved my life.

It has broken the cycle of Addiction for now, for my daughters and I as long as I work it every day.

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