My husband has been diagnosed with liver cirrhosis
When I fell in love with a Hep C patient I knew the risk I was taking, but somehow it still wasn’t enough to prepare me for the bad news I received last week.
My husband caught Hep C from a blood transfusion for his hemophilia at 10 years old and he’s been living with it for 22 years now. We knew liver cirrhosis was a possibility, but we never imagined that it would happen so soon.
When you start a life with someone you don’t really think about the end and what would happen if one of us ever got really sick. Sickness isn’t supposed to happen until we’re old and wrinkly, until we have lived a long life together. Our son isn’t even a year old yet and the fact that his father might not be around to send him to college or watch him get married has now become my reality. I try to be hopeful, but the resulting chaos makes it difficult.
We found out that the Hepatitis C progressed to Liver Cirrhosis last week when he started a new treatment for his Hep C. Expecting to finally be cured of the Hep C we were excited for him to start the treatment which is known to have a very high success rate but the medication wasn’t the only thing he received. We also received the sad news that he now has Liver Cirrhosis and that’s it. No information about options or lifestyle changes or what to expect. The nurse who delivered the life changing news said we would have to wait a month to talk to the doctor.
I don’t know about you but not knowing can sometimes be the worst part. Of course, I went straight to Google for some answers but every case is different and no concrete answers were found. No alcohol and low salt was pretty much the only consistent information we got, the rest was pretty vague. Life expectancy and life quality can’t be found on google. Only his doctor can really answer that question with any degree of certainty.
What now? I guess we wait and try not to freak out, well at least not too much. I’m trying to be hopeful and I’m successful most of the time but something changed and life at home isn’t the same. He’s changed. Angry. On edge. No Patience. I can’t reach him. The tension is unbearable. Everything I do makes him angry and he denies it or seems to think I deserve it. We should be growing closer, but it feels like I’m already losing him. Maybe he just needs time to process all of this. Well at least I hope that’s all it is.
Since all this chaos began I’ve thought about using drugs a few times. Not my usual drug of choice but still something that should be avoided. The worst thoughts are the ones where I think I could handle it and that it would be a relief to just have fun and get away from all this. It’s only a quick thought, nothing serious yet, but enough to have me think about how I’m going to avoid going down that dark path again. I’m even more cautious since the last time I relapsed was due in part to my 6 year relationship ending. I don’t know what I’d do if things didn’t work out with my husband, for whatever reason.
The fighting is just terrible and when I feel like I can’t take it anymore the first thing I do is get some distance by going into the bedroom. Then I’ll usually write. Thoughts need to slow down to be written down. They can only go as fast as I’m able to type which helps me calm down. It helps me organize my thoughts and process how I’m feeling. When we get in an argument I rather go in the bedroom and text him. It just makes it easier to express myself and say everything I need to without being cut off.
I know a big part of wanting to retreat into drugs has to do with the criticism and feeling like I’m not good enough. I’m a perfectionist in many aspects of my life. I’ve never taken criticism well and having to deal with it all the time for useless reasons is tough. Thinking I’m not being good enough has a significant negative effect on me. It’s one of my major weaknesses.
I know he’s going through a lot and I feel bad when I’m not more patient with him. I shouldn’t take it so personally when he’s criticizing me. However, it’s hard not to take something personally when your being criticized or when someone always getting mad at you. That’s pretty personal if you ask me. I’m not perfect, even though I’d like to think I am sometimes.
I’ve avoided going back to drugs thanks to a combination of two things. First is getting some distance by keeping busy with something I love and the second is remembering what drug use leads to. My secret answer to both those things is blogging. Writing calms me down and keeps me busy.
Whether I’m writing about addiction, reading an old post or reading another recovering addicts blog, it helps remind me what drug use leads to. Blogging is a great solution for many recovering addicts. I believe that’s why so many of us do it and why when things get bad at home I’m often hiding in the bedroom on my computer. We’ve built such a strong and caring online recovery community. I’m truly honored to be part of it.
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I’m a Recovering Addict, Child of an Addict, Freelance Writer and Psychology Major. I’ve recently become a mom to a wonderful baby boy and got engaged to his father, who is also a recovering addict and a great supporter of my dreams. I’ve always dreamed of having a career helping people and making a positive change in the world. I hope I can help people understand addiction and inspire compassion within them for those suffering from addiction. I believe that by letting people in on my journey of self-discovery along with sharing what my addiction and recovery mean to me I can give hope that recovery is possible as well as inspire change in those who are still struggling. I want to let people know they aren’t alone in this fight. I write all about this on my blog A Recovering Addicts Experience. To inquire about my freelance work or if you need someone to talk to I can be reached at email@example.com