And for a month all goes smoothly; she goes to meetings, sometimes three in a day. She seems well, better than well. She helps in the house; she cooks the best beef stew you’ve ever eaten; you and she laugh your asses off together. And then one day she drinks, and the anger comes and the screaming starts and doesn’t let up for two days. The third morning she disappears before anyone is up; her suitcase is gone, she is gone, and you have no idea where she is or how she got there. She does not answer her phone. Days go by. No word at all. Where is she? The house is quiet now, sane, and you would feel relief if you weren’t frantic with worry. You don’t know if she’s eating, where she is getting food. You don’t know where her money comes from.-Abigail Thomas
I illustrated three companion pieces to this short, powerful flash essay on loving someone with substance use disorder, by Abigail Thomas. Go look and read.