I met my late boyfriend in July 2006. I was travelling in Canada. He was a good person with a big heart, kind and funny and I think the only issue was he liked to have a drink, which was not an issue at that time.
He lost his job, due to redundancy, in November 2012 and this made him drink more and more. I think he was struggling with depression too, although he did not like to talk about his problems, he would just keep saying “he had a lot on his plate” when I asked him. I never really knew how much he was drinking as he hid it very well. In February 2013 he went into hospital with Hepatitis (alcohol related), he was in hospital for two months with this and when he came out he had changed and was a different person, his personality did a U turn and he was not the same man, he was standoffish, rude and selfish and started pushing people who loved or cared about him away. I think the doctors had told him he was dying, but I don’t know. When I first moved to Canada he introduced me to his friend as “My sweetie from England” which made me realise how much I loved him. But the last year his personality changed, one minute he was the kind, caring man that I had fallen in love with and the next he was rude and selfish. I told him I loved him and, for some reason this made him angry and he just could not handle that and told me to get out of his life and pushed me away. He refused to speak with me or have anything to do with me. I kept trying to speak with him and I did not understand what I had done wrong and I was completely devastated and destroyed by this. The last time I saw him was a few months prior to him dying and he was so disturbed and had pushed everybody away. He died of liver failure on the 12 March 2014. I found out he had died and I was completely heartbroken. He was found unconscious and yellow. He went to hospital, but never regained consciousness. His funeral took place a few days later and his memorial site is in his home town in Canada, which is hard for me, as it is harder to visit him. I also never got to say goodbye, which hurt a lot and he never told me he was dying, which made losing him so much harder and I blamed myself for pushing him over the edge. I asked his friend if Brian had ever cared about me and his friend said that yes Brian had loved having me in his life, he just did not know how to show it.
Losing someone is hard anytime, but losing someone to alcoholism is harder, as it has a stigma that we are not supposed to talk about. It is nearly two years since he died and I talk about him all the time, but the hardest part is knowing I will never see him again. I loved him more than anyone and always will. It’s silly but I cope by talking to his photograph and telling myself that he did not mean to hurt me, that it was just the nature of his illness. I love and miss him every day always.
Image credit: Flickr user Anathea Utley (Creative Commons)