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What does an addict feel when they hurt someone?


Just
Ronda
What does an addict feel when they hurt someone?
I would like to see some insight on this: when an addict is using, how do you feel about the pain you cause AT THE TIME YOU CAUSE IT? Not how you felt about it later, but AT THAT VERY MOMENT? I know you all say it was 'all about me, me, me' but what I mean is: were you even aware of it at the time? did you remember your day to day actions? from one day to the next? when you did something hurtful, did you even notice the pain in the other person's eyes? if you resorted to violence, were you aware of it at the time? how did you feel about it at? I hope I am making myself clear with these questions. An addict's personality changes to such a frightening extent and I would really like to see some deep and insightful answers to these questions, if it's not too much to ask?
     Replies...
forget
suzette
Re: What does an addict feel when they hurt someone?
It's exactly as if you were playing football.
....you got the ball, and you are going to score.  it's a blur to the goal line.  ........then the touchdown dance.   you are the greatest! .....go team!
........you turn around, and the other teams players are being carried out because you busted em up.
forget
suzette
Re: What does an addict feel when they hurt someone?
on speed things are in fast forward......in Japanese.
when you come down ......they're in English at the right speed.
you can't see over it, you are self absorbed, and thoughts
race, and you predict what people are saying before they can say it.
you're sending but not receiving.

...I want to say like a genius....but I don't mean we were smart...
....many a useless but elaborate mechanical device was born on speed.
....you have all these "brilliant" ideas....that are like an elaborate production...like the stones.
and the people in the background that you can't quite define because of the lights and pyrotechnics is everything else.

I stored everything......it translated itself later.  it took a whole year till I really knew what happened.  I had the memories......but until I un wound em...they never clicked.
understand?
guest
who
Re: What does an addict feel when they hurt someone?

Maybe I am an empathetic freak but drunk, drugged or delusional, I always saw and always will see the pain in other peoples eyes.
I believe that is why I am not as patient as most with codependent mates waiting for their addicts to suddenly become fine outstanding citizens. I don’t believe when someone stops using drugs that they are going to be good people. I know I never stopped being what I consider a good person. Sure I have my faults but I have always been a good person at my core. They say the divorce rate is roughly 50 percent, were they all drug users? Not even close. The majority have other problems that are causing these divorces. The rest had major problems before the drugs came along then they just blamed the major problems on the drugs.
Violent situations? I was always aware of the potential, the probability etc. etc..
Ice made me hyper-analyze everything, over think everything,
Indiana
shedevil
Re: What does an addict feel when they hurt someone?
Quote:
I don’t believe when someone stops using drugs that they are going to be good people.
Quote:
The majority have other problems that are causing these divorces. The rest had major problems before the drugs came along then they just blamed the major problems on the drugs.

Hey Guesswho~
And where was this post when I really needed it?! lol...
Or were you waiting for me to learn it on my own, just like it was meant to happen?
You're pretty kind-hearted for being so ornery...

With much love & respect..

Sfj Re: What does an addict feel when they hurt someone?
Here's what I said two days ago on this forum.
"Nobody returns.
The best you can hope for is that through treatment and recovery, they become a better person than they were before they started using. That is a more common outcome.

The issue of remorse, guilt, and shame is really huge and severe for many of us. We do everything we can to make amends, apologize, seek to pay any and all restitution, retribution and do everything possible to make up for past wrongs, crimes, sins, errors, and problems we caused.

We seek forgiveness and we repent - but it is never enough."

When you are in fire about to be burned to death, your only thought is how to escape. The center part of your brain is so highly stimulated that you don't start thinking about philosophy, ethics, morality, sociology, or the administration of relationship techniques and protocol.

That's how meth addiction is. Like a fire. (in your brain)
Just
Ronda
Re: What does an addict feel when they hurt someone?
Okay, thanks so far, I understand what is being said but could anyone try to maybe answer some of the above questions more specifically? more detail? or in order, and then add to that if you like? Were you were aware of your day to day actions? When a new day came, did you even remember the day from before? Or, are these questions too impossible to answer because life was just so abnormal? I hope I am not being too difficult, but just want more in depth of what exactly was going on in your brain at the time down to the most minute detail? Understand? Or, like I said, maybe just not possible? Sorry, I just wouldn't know. I'm trying to think back when I partied, and when I was drunk what did I think and what was my awareness of things? But it's been too long, so if I had a few drinks would this help me understand>D I think that is just totally not the same? And back in younger days, I also did crank (don't know if quite the same as meth today), but so very occasionally like I've said (like just 2-3 times a year on New Year's or something) and I kinda remember what that was like, but that was just out having fun for a night (don't attack that please, couldn't think of good wording and you know what I mean), it never effected my or anyone else's life or hurt anyone so I just can't compare that either.
guest
who
Re: What does an addict feel when they hurt someone?
Quote:
Were you were aware of your day to day actions? When a new day came, did you even remember the day from before? Or, are these questions too impossible to answer because life was just so abnormal? I hope I am not being too difficult, but just want more in depth of what exactly was going on in your brain at the time down to the most minute detail? Understand? Or, like I said, maybe just not possible?

Yes you are aware of your day to day actions. Yes you remember the day before. Sleep deprivation might prevent your memory from being sharp but you know how that goes right? Otherwise your mind, is real sharp. At least mine was.

scorpio Re: What does an addict feel when they hurt someone?
A very very large part of why I used is so that I would not FEEL.
Of course it didn't work 100%,,,, 100% of the time.... when it didn't work and I did FEEL,,, I usually felt JUSTIFIED. I found a way in my convoluted diluted brain to make it more your fault than mine.

If I stole from you, you had it coming, because, you would have done the same to me, or you were selfish, or you wouldn't know anyhow, or you couldn't prove it was me, or it was somehow mine anyways.

If I said something mean,,, you shouldn't be so sensitive, or you deserved it, or you should know better than to approach me then or or or or...

If I was disloyal to you,,,, you deserved it, or you weren't loyal to me, or you were thinking of being disloyal to me, or it would teach you not to do or say......

I ALWAYS justified my bullshit... I found a way to justify even the worst of my behaviors,,, and most of the justifications didn't become reality to me until I began to work the steps.

Even now, as I am working the steps on my marriage, I have been in recovery 98% of my marriage, and am finding that I have justified some not so great behaviors in order to gain control of my using addict.

Sigh,,, still sick,,,, but trying to get better.
shakti Re: What does an addict feel when they hurt someone?
Long post.
No apologies.
Read what you want.

I can appreciate the questions and thanks for the answers.
JustRonda - I can appreciate your desire to know specifics concerning the questions you asked.
As a recovering codependent and former partner to 'maintainer' whose behavior moved from decent to acceptable to questionable to intolerable...well, i have spent a great deal of my time pondering the same questions you asked and so many more.
I am fortunate to have a most wonderful friend who used for six years (clean over four? years now) to walk me thru what? huh? and I don't understand?
.... Why? What? How? became my little codependent "got to get to the bottom of this" obsession.
I don't know if you are/have been relative, friend, partner of a meth user, but I will address my response as such.
There are so many questions... I am not sure that all the answers in the world could completely satisfy that thirst for a feeling of understanding the users vantage.

My friend who used for six years told me something like this.... those years were a blur. i dated men who used. i dated men who didn't use. you just don't feel anything. you have no emotions. you are numb.
She said to me {I have only known her clean - a wonderful and bright person she is!} She said to me... i pushed my mother out of my apartment and down the stairs! and then, i threw her luggage down the stairs! My mother! My mother, who had traveled across the country to see me! I pushed her out and down the stairs! You want to know why? Because she smoked a cigarette in my apartment. You just don't care.

Well, now, she cares. The way in which she describes the event is with comical animation - as if her own story is too preposterous to believe. (she and her family are well)

Funny thing is, I got tied up at the top of the stairs. I became very confrontational and demanding with my partner towards the end (tough love gone mad). I was very hurt, very angry and I let him know. I was very much involved 'in the moment' and not 'cool' enough to know to step back and assert myself in ways that might have been more beneficial to both of us. He tied me up at the top of the stairs, pushed my body so that my head hung over the top-stair -my face looking down the stairs- and he said, 'If you move or try to break free, i will push you down these stairs and you will end up at the bottom.'

With that, he left the house.
Turns out he took my debit card to the store. He brought home a grocery bag with milk, eggs and bread. He also got 100 bucks cash back and, I am only guessing, made a quick trip to see his dealer.

I don't have an answer to your questions. He became 'meaner' even though I backed off from my own aggressive behavior and offered a helping hand - again. Yet, I was/am still the enemy. I have to realize my own contribution to the problem... My confrontational behavior only fueled the fire.

But there is something curious there - in his behavior. The kick-boxing, martial artist and health-conscious man who used to cook breakfast for our daughter and take pride in walking her to school, tied me up (loose enough for me to get free) in order to buy drugs...And at the same time, he made sure to purchase food for breakfast for the following day.

Perhaps, it is all to easy to see that he was an addict feeding his addiction only. Perhaps, I am back to stage one of my own codependence in suggesting such in this post. But, right now, I feel that there was still some part of him that was grappling with a need for the drug and a desire to 'do good.'

En fin, the addict is no longer the person we have known. This person we are searching for still exists. We are no longer the self we have known. Our self still exists. We, all, must begin again. We must believe in the power of our love for others. We must believe in the power of our love for ourselves.

We might do well to question every thing. We need answers. We need answers. Answers will come with time. We must be patient. Search for your answers. Research. Read. Ask. Pray if you are inclined. Don't stop your quest. Seek and ye shall find.

Special thanks to those who used to use and took the time to answer JustRonda's questions... you helped me as well. Thanks JustRonda for asking...
forget
suzette
Re: What does an addict feel when they hurt someone?
Quote:
There are so many questions... I am not sure that all the answers in the world could completely satisfy that thirst for a feeling of understanding the users vantage.

ask em. ...you'll at least get some other angles.  also....that that statement, flowed beautifully.
...nice.
you're right too, but, we could  try if you have any questions...

...I like a challenge.

eyes
open83
Re: What does an addict feel when they hurt someone?
i was aware of what my day to day actions were, but NO i was not aware of the pain i was causing at the time...
Reason Re: What does an addict feel when they hurt someone?
when an addict is using, how do you feel about the pain you cause AT THE TIME YOU CAUSE IT? Not how you felt about it later, but AT THAT VERY MOMENT?

Obviously, in any non-sober state, it's much easier to miss things going on around you. But sometimes a drug can increase an aspect of awareness, like Ecstasy's effect of increased empathy.

That being said, many factors contribute to our mental state at any given time. Psychoactive substances have a greater impact, certainly, but the single most significant factor isn't a drug, or a mood, or situational circumstances: it's the individual.

You seem to almost be asking if drugs "make" us do certain things. To paraphrase GUESTWHO's spot-on remark: quitting a drug doesn't improve one's character, integrity, virtue or moral quality. I'm reminded of a joke: a patient who's about to have an operation on his hand asks the doctor, "Will I be able to play the piano good after the surgery?" Certainly, the doctor replies. "Great," smiles the patient, "I never could before."

Personally, I usually don't see the behavior of someone who is "high" as caused by the drug... I see the drug as an inhibition reducer, allowing behavior unfettered by social demands or fear of consequence. The "real you" shines forth, for better or worse.

Exceptions abound, but generally I believe it holds true. My own experience carries the most weight. Behavior I see attributed to drug use in others didn't arise in me when I was an addict. I wasn't more angry, violent, insensitive, dishonest, or arrogant... and believe me, I've done all the bad drugs very, very thoroughly.

Certainly, severe sleep deprivation has some inescapable effects. Patience is shorter, mental capacity diminished, attention span reduced. But whatever my quality of character before the drug, so it remained during addiction.

But I'm just basically fleshing out GUESTWHO's succinct earlier post. Go back and read what she said again. I will, too... gotta learn to be a little more pithy. :)

And you know, it might not be a bad idea to make a little experiment, like you mentioned. Go out, get a little drunk, see how it affects what goes through your mind as you function socially. Alcohol is a different animal from meth and other hard stuff, but the general principle remains the same.
Bent
But
Not
Broken
Re: What does an addict feel when they hurt someone?
when an addict is using, how do you feel about the pain you cause AT THE TIME YOU CAUSE IT?
Ronda~
To the best of my introspection, questions I have asked of some people I was around when using meth, and reading all my journal entries, English essays, and working during those six months, I felt energetic, I got a whole lot of remodeling completed during "human" hours, and I read and remember the content of many great books I normally would not have had the time for. 99% of my meth-high was normal me except I didn't work through some personal issues I should have.....and NOW the pain sets in working through them...pain for me, which is fine. I fit the definition of "Functional" user though.

No one knew I was smoking meth to the best of all above starts to first sentence except my meth addict and his brother. Fun was funnier. Laughter was more from my core. My writings were much more fine-tuned and evocative. Making an A in this particular class in college and getting several essays and interviews published kinda blew me away. My professor (now sponsor) cut no slack whatsoever--so yeah--that A and published works made me soar. The inhibited creative side of me said, "hey, try oil painting now, or poetry, or horseback riding (major fear of horses here)".

None of my patients suffered lack of care, my two classes for CEU's were a breeze, and thankfully, I do remember all I learned and did.

Did I cause someone pain? Two folks got a severe blasting from me that, under *non-meth* me would have never occurred. At the moment my mouth let loose, no, I didn't give a flying flip if I did hurt every feeling they had and then some. One used meth--a female, and you want to know how hard it was for me to NOT cold-@#%$ her and leave her lay in the dusty road with no phone/car/means of getting anywhere? Instead, I broke 2 fingers and dislocated my thumb on a phone pole I had her pinned against.

How ironic I am hanging on with a thread today because she was my new patient yesterday. Now she looked and acted 150% like the NGeo show and she didn't know me from Adam's house cat. Evidently, she got ripped off big time from some deals she should have made, or she did the meth herself which makes more sense, and her supplier came and collected. She paid with a broken hip and leg that now has pins, screws, and plates galore. (Seeing the mention of Walmart in one of the other posts broke me out in a cold, cold sweat when I read it cos that dirt road is behind the Walmart--yes, I am shaking as I write, not with anger at her but anger at what it has done to her.) I did the initial intake for her care and then called one of my male rehab nurses and asked him to get over there and get busy and I'd pay him overtime & I don't have to see her again. If I were farther along than 21 days clean, I could manage her case fine...but not now.

Marc, the lawyer I was starting to date, said something the last night we went out about a case he had with a "speed-freak." That was the only last 2 words he got out. I know I hurt him deeply, blindsided him totally, then just said, "see ya, I'm walking home." Clear-headed, I did lots of cut-through's in the woods from the college campus to my house and smoked a few bowls along the way--especially when "speed-freak" would run over me again. Now that he knows I was an active meth addict, he understands hearing those stereotyping words made me turn bytch-o-matic on him. He has accepted my apologies and listened intently and read to become informed. At this point, not because I hurt him and we've re-connected on more sane terms, I doubt we will ever be more than friends.

I have to stay away from the female patient and Marc cos they are both associated with me smoking my bowl.

QUOTING RondA.
Not how you felt about it later, but AT THAT VERY MOMENT? I know you all say it was 'all about me, me, me' but what I mean is: were you even aware of it at the time?

***Ronda, I was fortunate. I only "saw" things a few times and that came from lack of sleep--same applies to "hearing" things. Now the incident at college where my mexican food and tea were dumped with meth as I turned away for just a second? Two days I don't remember anything but seriously WANTING, WISHING, to puke. I was on some bad (laced, rigged, dirty, whatever you wanna call it) meth for sure and it kept me awake the longest I have gone without sleep at all-
six days and nights straight. An answer in advance here; I don't remember sitting here at my computer doing college homework and business work, then without warning, falling asleep in my chair and dropping cigs and burning my housecoat to the point the smoke alarm went off (my meth addict friend stayed here with me--I was sweating my arse off and the AC was going and I had a housecoat on--he told Mom I had strep throat cos I do not sleep at all with strep throat, I puke lots, and I run a fever and do "silly" things (dropping that cig.. NOT silly, scares me sh*tless now! And I need to get it out of the house ASAP cos soon Mom will think I'll wear it as cold as it's vacillating here--and go buy the identical replacement. During my recovery I don't need to hear how I should quit smoking--and if that housecoat were seen--Mom would throw a fit and I'd probably have to leave or blow my stack. I bite my tongue a good bit when I am on edge now cos I sure do treasure my Mom. It's gonna hurt to tell her the truth.)

QUOTING RondA.
did you remember your day to day actions? from one day to the next?

I've yet to forget what went on during those six months with or without looking at my journals. As I said above, thankfully, I only "lost" two days of being awake, and of remembering. My friend said the most I did wrong aside from the housecoat was shivering/sweating bullets and talking off the wall, in a low voice that didn't wake her, in my sleep. Yes Ronda, this does scare me, that I was a Functional addict, but thanks for some great questions.

QUOTING RondA.
when you did something hurtful, did you even notice the pain in the other person's eyes?

Hers? Yes but it went by so fast I got over it even faster. This is one story I don't want to share any time soon. When I did her intake, I told her I once knew someone like her and had been quite ill-tempered with them. I was glad I didn't hurt her any more than with words and I'd like to see her again someday and apologize. This woman is big-boned and she is one tough woman--I'm tiny and have this *problem* called a huge heart and hate to kill a spider. She looked up at me and said, "honey, ain't no way you have mean in you--bet she never gave it a thought." If I find out she is clear-headed during treatment from her male rehab nurse, I may send her a letter asking her to please forgive me. Marc I knew I hurt instantaneously and I didn't have to look in his eyes to know.

QUOTING RondA.
if you resorted to violence, were you aware of it at the time? how did you feel about it at? I hope I am making myself clear with these questions.

I didn't feel a darn thing when I hit that pole and broke my fingers--it never did hurt. I was so aware I could have done great harm to her I chose to take the pole instead, which felt a lot better. That I can have this temper scares me greatly--which my therapist and I are working on.

QUOTING RondA.
An addict's personality changes to such a frightening extint and I would really like to see some deep and insightful answers to these questions, if it's not too much to ask?

Ronda, I could have just as easily been PMS-ing as far as the female is concerned and been no different...temper runs in my family and when clean, I handle it by going swimming or hiking or ride my bike....or I journal. Celebrate Recovery, my journal, my sponsor, my therapist, and resuming physical activity (when I finally get some sleep and feel safe enough to do it) will be my coping skills.

Essentially, I have not changed before, during, and now, after meth. Too many things would be falling apart if I had changed.

As for my earlier saying my inhibitions lowered and I tried oil painting, poetry, etc......I don't think that's the case at all now. There was just more energy in me to get done all kinds of things that needed doing thus allowing me to follow some creative outlets I'd always wanted to pursue.

*As for me*, I'll say or do exactly the same thing sober as I will if I were to drink or smoke meth. I've never bought that your inhibitions allow your true self to show when under any mind-altering substance. (FWIW, that also holds true for those I personally know.)

Ronda, that's as bare honest as I can be. Don't know if I have helped or not, but I do thank you for asking such therapeutic (for me at least) questions.

May you find your answers without getting a wee bit drunk.
candi
cayne
365
Re: What does an addict feel when they hurt someone?
this is how i felt... early on, no one knew i used. i knew nothing of the dangers of meth, so at the time i felt i hurt no one. as i used more, i stole from my job to pay for it. i felt guilty yes, i knew it was wrong, hurtful to the co., but the thought of being w/o meth tidal waved any other thought or feeling. I'd lie to borrow $. i was aware & remembered my day to day actions, but just dealt with the guilt by using more. later, i became a very angry girl. if i caused any pain, W/O INTENDING to, no i didn't notice. when i WANTED to hurt people, I did & was GLAD. i was aware of my actions, though some foggy, but justified every last one if told i was mean. i didn't think so, just giving them what they deserved. THEY shouldn't call me or worse, try to HELP ME! the weird part is near my "bottom" I could never hurt people ENOUGH. I did my best to be the worst & yet it wasn't enough! i lost the GLAD feeling from before. so i say no i didn't see the pain cuz no human could've been at the receiving end of my anger & not been hurt.
corty
shell
Re: What does an addict feel when they hurt someone?
Quote:
The best you can hope for is that through treatment and recovery, they become a better person than they were before they started using. That is a more common outcome.

Was this a typo?
Did you mean that the best you could hope for was they become better then who they were WHILE using?

Please clarify

Jamie
J1979
Re: What does an addict feel when they hurt someone?
My using upset others because they worried about me and it stressed them to see me hurting myself. I didn't steal or rely on friends or family to support my habit, I worked so in the department I don't have any guilt as I supported my own habit. I tried to hide my addiction from my loved ones, I now realize that they knew the whole time. They probably walked on eggshells around me which is stressful. I didn't steal from people or use others, instead I was often used by other addicts because I was a generous person even while using because I didn't like using alone so I would share my stuff 50/50 with whoever I was using with. I feel I was still a basically good person while using, I just wasn't around alot and that hurt my family especially when there were family events I that I was expected to attend. So no I didn't intentionally hurt my loved ones. If I did hurt them at the time I was upset about it but I just used more drugs to make the shame and guilt go away. Looking back I now feel bad for causing any stress or pain to my loved ones.
Jamie
Sfj Re: What does an addict feel when they hurt someone?
Corty,
I meant it the way I wrote it.  That was not a typo.
Many recovering addicts become better people after recovery than they were before addiction.

Remember, just before the person took the first drug, what kind of condition they were in.
They were getting ready to become a drug addict.
That means, they had not dealt with the problems that lead to drug addiction.

After recovery, therapy, treatment, working ALL TWELVE STEPS WITH A SPONSOR and continuous embracing the tools of recovery, including the tenth step, then YES:

The recovering, or recovered addict can be a much better person than they ever were at any time previous in their life.
corty
shell
Re: What does an addict feel when they hurt someone?
I guess we are all entitled to our opinions...
There's a lost innocence and you can never get that back no matter how many steps you take.
Do you think everyone was in a bad state before they started using drugs...
How about someone who does it out of peer pressure?
That doesn't make them a bad person, just weak.

Depression doesn't make you a bad person either in my opinion but drugs do, you do things and hurt people to obtain and maintain your high.... No one can ever go back or turn out better.

You may try to be a better person then WHILE you were using but you will never achieve what you lost.

But that's my opinion.
Sfj Re: What does an addict feel when they hurt someone?
Yeah,  That's what I said in the first place.
"Nobody returns."
And that goes for non-addicts the same as addicts and everybody else.
We can't go back to what we were before, so the best we can hope for is to become something better than we were, either before or during.

And I am convinced that everyone can improve and can be a better person if they really want to and use the proper tools.

See also:

What does an addict feel the moment they cause pain to others?

Does meth take away feelings or compassion?


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