A happy, healthy, peaceful 2020 to all! The New Year arrives with new hopes, never more true than when you love an addict. Maybe this year they’ll see the light, kick the habit, become normal and allow you to feel normal again too. Although I’ve got the smallest glimmer of hope for Ryan (there’s always got to be some hope…right?), I’m not holding my breath that this will actually be the year.

On a very positive note he’s no longer physically homeless, having moved on to a canal boat at the end of last year. His homelessness has been one of the most stressful things for both of us, and it’s caused me many sleepless nights. But now he’s got a roof I don’t feel as frantic when I wake up thinking about him at 3 am. I’ve always told him that if he tries to improve his situation, I’ll support him so the weekend he moved in I took him a sleeping bag, blankets, towels, cups, plates etc. I delivered quite a bit of food over Christmas but I made it clear I’m not stepping back into his life, just helping him to get settled in. I really hope that he makes a success of boat life but now isn’t the time to go back to giving, giving, giving. He’s got to do this through his own efforts. So on that note I held back from phoning him until this week, when I found him surprisingly upbeat. He seems to be sorting various things out for himself which is good.

But I remain ultra-cautious. I know he’s still using as I asked him outright and he said yes. I challenged that by suggesting the drug taking will keep causing mayhem in his life, even now he’s got a place to call his own. But he still doesn’t accept my argument. As far as he’s concerned there is no connection between doing drugs and living in chaos. In fact, the drugs are one of the few things that make his life worth living and anyway, everyone does them.

So there’s the problem. And that’s why I’m not holding my breath for 2020. An addict has to want to get clean. Ryan has to want it more than anything else in the world but he hasn’t got to that point yet. He still has to reach his rock bottom and that’s what I’ll be thinking about in my next blog. Until then, fingers crossed that 2020 could be the year that your addict makes the changes.