I am sharing this here, because I cannot seem to talk about it honestly with any of the people in my life without feeling like I am betraying a trust.
I was involved with a man that struggles with heroin addiction. I am not going to tell his story.
He lived with me in my house for 5 months. I needed a flatmate to help pay the rent, we learned of each other through a mutual friend. In the time that he lived with me, he gradually opened up to me regarding his addiction and more importantly what would I think be classified as psychotic delusions. In the early days he seemed to be able to differentiate between himself and the voices that he was hearing.
I fell in love. I let him stay in my house, despite the fact that he was not paying rent, in fact had no income whatsoever, I fed him and his dog, I found him work, a commission through a friend. (eventually I paid back the deposit for this work as he did not complete it, he left with the materials) I did not tell anybody about his psychosis, I believed him that he was going through a spiritual and cognitive process for which he needed time. I still do. The relationship was marked by extremes, he would profess his feelings for me and the calmness that it brought and then swing into extreme misogynistic musings on society and scream at the female voices that he heard. I felt that it was at times pointed to me, but he denied this.
We would develop a routine of comfort and affection for a couple of days, then we would have a disagreement, in my mind a trivial matter or a disagreement on how he talks about women or about finances, a sensitive matter but a realistic one that needs to be talked about. Post one of these he would leave and stay with his mother in the city for a couple of days to a week. This, as far as I could tell, is when he used. When he came back he would go through, what looked to me like typical withdrawal, in this time he would be reticient to verbally aggressive.
I had made it clear from the beginning that I would be moving from the house when my lease ended.
Two weeks before the end of the lease, we again ended up in an argument. I told him that the words he was using and the way he was talking to the “women’s voices” affect me, “even if you are not directing it at me, the spinn-offs hit me in the face”. He was affronted by this, it sounded like he thought I thought my reaction was more important than the trauma he was reliving, I use the word trauma- he would not. He started packing his stuff, he said that I was attacking him “the whole time”. I managed to calm him down and we ended up having a very in-depth, on the level and dare I say it ,caring, conversation about spirituality, male and female relationships, power relations and how they can be supportive or destructive. A couple of minutes after the conversation had drawn to a close, he accused me of spiritually attacking him. He went outside of the house and again started screaming at “whores, bitches, witches” I also left the house and hid with his dog behind the house. He again started packing his stuff and called for the dog, who was now seeking comfort with me. I was accused of stealing the dog, so I walked the dog to him and went to sit away, waiting for him to leave. To shorten a long story, he at some point turned on me and hit me in the face, on my back and tried to choke me. Even though he was, I believe, having a deeply disturbing psychotic breakdown he also seemed intermittently in control of himself.
I did not call the police, I have to thus far only told one person about what happened, and this only after he officially broke communication with me. He has moved back in with his mother, who sporadically kicks him out of the house, has had him committed and then invites him back in again. He has also spent a bit of time in prison since then.
I am writing this, because I am trying to understand why I allowed this to happen, issues of loneliness set aside, nor do I think I suffer from a type of savior complex (or maybe I do). I still find myself caring about him and feeling guilty for discussing it even here. I do not see any hope for him any more. He carries around more pain than any person I have met in my life, I worry about him and am at the same time terrified of him. We have broken communication and he does not know where I live or work now, I do not think I am in any real physical danger.
I really want to understand why he hit me. Has any one been through something like this?