Things You Only Know If Your Boyfriend Does Loads Of Coke And You Don't
The Debrief: Weekends are a write-off, the sex can suffer, and everything else that happens when your boyfriend does cocaine regularly
It’s 2am and my boyfriend and I have been out drinking and having all the fun – but then I sense the tone is shifting, the bathroom trips becoming more frequent, the laughing pretty much disappearing and – oh great, everyone’s doing coke now.
This means that, when we get home, he’ll try to have sex with me while swallowing consistently with a strangely intense look in his eye that makes him look like a different person, and when that doesn’t work (which it doesn’t), we’ll go to sleep knowing that the next two days are going to be a total write-off.
My boyfriend is self-employed, so weekends mean nothing to him, and he does coke about twice a month. Nah, it doesn’t feel like a lot when you say it like that and no, he doesn’t do it so much that it’s a problem in itself – but you’d be surprised how much a slight penchant for cocaine can affect your nights out, your weekends, and your general relationship.
‘When I was a child I always dreamed of going out with a nice boy who snorted things transported from other countries potentially inside other people to get high,’ said nobody, ever.
He’ll run out of money a lot
A night out for someone who does coke is always over £100 before you’ve even factored in the drinks. My boyfriend – who we’ll call Tim for the purpose of not having to say ‘my boyfriend’ – isn’t an addict, but he gets ‘fucked up’ about once a fortnight on about a gram of coke.
We‘re not talking Scarface, we’re talking a guy in his late 20s who discovered cocaine at uni and struggles to not do it on a monthly basis. This means that he’s not consistently poor, but he’s quite often completely broke because he happens to be a very generous man (and doesn’t want to snort it alone), which means he can easly drop £200.
And then a cab, because nobody wants to take public transport/drive while high. And then drinks. And then a cab the next day from wherever he’s ended up crashing. I’ve sort of given up on him taking me away for the weekend, because it’s not really financially viable. Which obviously makes me feel really great about things.
It’s a sensitive subject
You can’t bring up someone’s drug use, or lambast them for it, when they’re sort of aware they’re doing it a bit too much. Especially after you’ve gone round on a Saturday to spend a full day with them after a long week at work, only to find them totally wrecked. Again.
‘I feel awful’ is Tim’s weekend mantra, followed by a huge pizza, followed by feeling even more awful because coke and alcohol ruins his stomach. And while sometimes being horribly hungover/on a comedown is fine on a weekend, during stressful periods in his life it becomes every weekend, and it’s all I can do not to shake him and start yelling, ‘THANKS FOR RUINING MY WEEKEND TOO, YOU IDIOT’.
There’s nothing like spending your day off sitting next to someone who’s groaning, sniffing and unable to sustain a conversation because they’re so depressed.
It’ll be worse when he’s stressed
Last year, he was incredibly stressed, and asked me to let him do his own thing for a week because he needed to focus on work. He needed some space, he said. He then proceeded to get completely fucked out of his head for an entire week while his work suffered and he made himself ill.
So, of course, when I exploded and told him he was a mess, what proceeded was one of the biggest, ugliest arguments we’ve ever had that left me smoking a pack of 20 cigarettes in my living room alone (I don’t smoke) and us not speaking for days (this has never happened before or since).
I’m still fairly sure he thinks my intervention was a bad idea, even a year later. I just really hope he doesn’t get ‘stressed’ again, because I refuse to stand by and watch someone I love ruin themselves from the inside out, and it will probably be the end point to our relationship.
Who wants to bring up kids with the guy who snorts coke till 6am when he can’t cope with life? Er, not me.
It’s really cringe
Shout out to anyone who’s heard a middle-class white guy say: ‘Me and Mark are probably going to go back to mine for some chang.’
Nights out can be really irritating
When we’re having a brilliant night, you can bet it’ll be ruined by that one sentence: ‘We’re going to pick up.’
Suddenly, the group splits into the people who are drunk and the people who have moved onto the Next Level, leaving behind everyone else. They’ll start acting shifty, and make trips to the bathroom between having intense talks only with others who are also going to the bathroom, and there’s a weird feeling of social hierarchy. It’s those who are ‘on it’ and those who ‘aren’t’.
And I know. I’ve done coke. I’ve been at parties and been high and, to be frank, you prefer spending time with people who are on your level, just like when you’re totally shitfaced on vodka and prefer not to spend your evening with the girl who had one white wine spritzer.
Which explains it, but doesn’t make it any more fun when it happens to you and you’re the one trying to make conversation with someone who doesn’t seem to be able to smile with their eyes.
You’ll get weird FOMO
It’s either go home alone feeling frustrated and like your night has been ruined (this will be magnified if you’ve drunk loads of wine) or suck it up. Through your nose.
This can be problematic, and it’s something I’ve decided to stop doing because I don’t actually like doing cocaine and my comedowns aren’t worth the 20 minutes of feeling good followed by four hours of trying to feel as good as you did in that first 20 minutes.
And Tim is a bit of a mess on it, whereas I’m quite lucid, so my night is invariably not as fun as his. And you know what? When I do it just because he’s doing it, it makes me feel weak. Although, when I leave the night halfway through because everyone’s doing coke, that makes me feel really weak too. And sad. It’s lose-lose.
Weekend sex is sparse
If he’s on coke, he doesn’t come for ages and the sex is really shit so I don’t come at all. It’s basically jack hammering away, or joke-porny-rough, and he always tries to do anal. Excellent.
If he’s on a comedown, he can’t have sex because he’s too sad and full of pizza. The more I write this, the more I’m wondering what the point of me going round after he’s had a big one is.
It brings out a maternal instinct
When he’s lying there, asleep on the couch, cuddled up in a throw because he’s been out ‘on the chang’ (I’m dying of cringe) and he opens his eyes and moans and reaches out for me so I can hug him better, it totally gets me right between the ribs.
I bring him orange juice and try and talk him out of getting a takeaway, and he likes being held for hours, and sort of snuggles into my neck, then I feel happy. And like I have a purpose – to help him when he’s down, just like when I get overwhelmed at work and he sits me down and talks me through everything logically so I feel better.
Then I remember that this is all down to the fact he went out and got high, and I want to strangle him again.
You’ll get paranoid
You’ll think weird things when he’s out until 7am and you’re sitting at home watching Netflix eating mashed potato, and you’ll hate yourself for thinking them. Like, ‘Why does he need to do it, is it because he hates me?’ and ‘Is he banging some other girl right now because he’s so high he doesn’t know where he is?’
That last one is a big one for me. People get mad-horny on cocaine, and there’s something intimate about sharing lines with a group of people in a room, especially if one of them’s really hot and coming onto you. The thought of it makes me go cold, and whenever I bring it up with him he gets really, really upset – he’d never cheat on me, he says. ‘And it makes me really sad that you don't trust me.’
To be fair, whenever he’s drunk and high he tends to run around nightclubs with a scarf around his head quacking, but it doesn’t stop me going cold sometimes – especially when the drug party happens at his flat.
You’ll organise rival nights out
Otherwise known as the Coke Night Competition, I went through a period of time where I organised nights out when he was having coke-y nights out so I wouldn’t be sitting at home eating mashed potato thinking, ‘Is he banging someother girl right now?’
My nights out don’t necessarily have to involve drugs, but they do have to involve so much alcohol that I don’t have the headspace to feel weird about him doing drugs. You’ll be able to sense when they’re about to have a big night, without them saying, ‘I’m going to do some cocaine this Friday’, because they’ll subtly give off signs using words like ‘big night’ and ‘big one’ and ‘we’ll see how I feel on Saturday before we organise to do anything’.
They’ll also send you lots of texts saying they love you very much and call you when they wake up the next day because they know you feel weird about it, and they want you to feel OK (mainly, though, it’s because they feel guilty).
You’ll have an ultimatum
In my mind, I’ve got an ultimatum that I never consciously decided upon, it’s just always been there. If the cocaine use doesn’t finish before he’s 30 (absolute max) then there’s going to be a bit of a problem.
Especially considering I’ve really started going off huge nights out, and am starting to try and figure out how to live life without needing to get fucked off my tits. In the past, it’s been useful and acceptable, but Tim needs to sort out his coping mechanisms if he’s going to develop and be in a relationship with actual adult responsibilities.
Like I said before, who wants to be married to a guy who needs to go and do coke regularly when things get tough?
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