’Twas the Night Before Christmas

Happy couple
’Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the house,
He had everyone stirring, acting like a louse.
Stockings were hung, by the chimney though he didn’t care,
He hoped his dealer soon would be there;
All were awake, no one nestled in bed,
While screaming continued, ringing in my head

I cried hysterically for what feels like hours. He just kept screaming at me and at this point I can’t even remember why he was mad or how the fight started. He threw the Christmas present he bought me at my head. A ring. That blew any sense of the normality I wanted. I was excited to open presents at my parents’ house in the morning. Instead, this is how I get the ring I’d wanted.

Oh no. My parents’ house in the morning. How am I going to hide it again? I will be exhausted from no sleep due to the constant fighting. And my eyes. No doubt they will be puffy from crying.

I’ll have to put on an act. Again. I’ll pretend this fight didn’t happen. I’ll act surprised when I open that ring tomorrow. My holiday is already ruined, I don’t need to ruin it for my parents. Or worse, once more give them a reason not to like him. I hate being so deceitful but I really want them to like him. Because I love him. And he’s not always like this. Why does he get so stressed out like this during the holidays?

What I didn’t know then was that he was high.

Writing this now, years later, I still feel sad that our life was like that. But I am also tremendously grateful when I think about our life now. Our 4th, drama-free Christmas together completely due to the fact he is sober.

The holidays are undoubtedly an extremely tough time for addicts, their families, and loved ones. Addicts have a tendency to either screw up holiday gatherings or just not attend. Either way, it is painful for the family and loved ones.

If this story sounds a little too familiar to you, don’t be naive like me. Your loved one is probably abusing drugs or alcohol. Don’t brush it aside for the “sake of everyone being together.” Please seek help for yourself or loved one. I promise help is out there and it is possible to make holidays happy again. Narconon New Life Retreat in Louisiana saved the life of my fiancé and has given our families and us a lifetime full of enjoyable, relaxing holidays.

Merry Christmas to all, and to all a goodnight!


Tara Smith

Tara’s involvement in substance abuse treatment followed her involvement helping a loved one through an addiction. She works in the substance abuse field at Narconon New Life Retreat while following in her mother’s footsteps by pursuing a Bachelors in Social Work.