How drugs affect relationships

A relationship can be very difficult when your partner is on drugs. Drug addiction is far more common than many people think whether it be to illegal drugs like cannabis are cocaine, or prescription medication use that has become out of control. Drug addiction is a disease and living with someone under its shadow is hard.

A drug addict may become obsessed with their addiction and any relationships are bound to take a back seat. Spending others in pursuit, taking and recovering from the side effects, drug addicts are not easy to live with. There may be trust issues to as an addict will go to any lengths to fund their habit, which often may include borrowing money or even stealing from their partner. Someone who is taking drugs may behave erratically and he may never know what sort of mood they are going to be in. Walking on egg shells and tiptoeing around their partner is common for someone who is in a relationship with the drug user.

If the couple have children, then it is very difficult to avoid them being vulnerable to the effects of their parents drug use. The addict me think that their habit affects no one else but them, but this is not true. Drug addiction has a massive impact on family life but someone who is in the grips of addiction may be blinded to the truth. They may know has an effect on their family but are powerless to stop taking drugs. Children from homes where drug addiction is present are far more likely to suffer from neglect and abuse. There are also more likely to suffer from low self-esteem and behavioural issues as they become desperate for the attention they are not getting at home. Children of addicts may be genetically predisposed to becoming addict themselves. They may even grow up thinking that drugs are part of normal, everyday life and can easily fall into the same trap as their parents.

Sometimes the other partner in the relationship, the nondrug user, may suffer from co-dependency issues. Co-dependency is when they make the relationship more important than themselves and will do all the running and put all the effort in to trying to fix the relationship and their partner. They may receive personal gratification from being seen as the strong and organised one in the relationship. Looking after someone else can also help fulfil certain emotional needs that co-dependent person may have. They may feel that being in a relationship with someone who is addicted to drugs better than being in no relationship at all and may effectively be flogging a dead horse rather than be single.

Trying to help a partner with a drug problem can be a real issue. Any attempt to confront them of the drug use can be met with hostility, in difference or excuses. A drug addict has many defences that their use and may refuse to see that there is a problem. If you are in a relationship with someone who refuses to give up drugs then you must consider whether or not it’s a healthy or safe situation to be in. Visit family addiction support groups and seek assistance.

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Calls and contact requests are answered by admissions at

UK Addiction Treatment Group.

We look forward to helping you take your first step.

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