One of the biggest misconceptions about substance abuse is the idea that it can only affect one person in the family. The truth is, when your spouse is suffering from addiction, everything in the family can fall apart. Marital issues may arise, and complications to the overall health of each of the member of the family are also at risk.
Contempt is attacking your partner’s sense of self by conveying disgust. It can be expressed both verbally and non-verbally. — Angela Bisignano, PhD
Why Substance Abuse Is Damaging
Substance abuse hurts the people close to them because it dominates the abuser’s thoughts and actions. In some instances, it becomes a source of their behavioral malfunction that affects their skills in communication and empathy. Sometimes, your spouse’s addiction can turn a happy home into a miserable place where you and your children experience emotional and psychological suffering that strongly causes parental alienation due to disrespect, unwarranted fear, and manipulation. There are also instances that your partner will no longer value the importance of your marriage and will see it as a triggering point for his harmful actions. Substance abuse wastes a lot of time, money and attention that will eventually lead to separation and violent measures.
Why It Is Dangerous
When a person is experiencing an addiction, they become aggressively irrational when it comes to decision-making. They no longer function normally and often see things as something that encourages their mental and emotional incapability. It deteriorates an individual’s personality and tends to turn him into something unmanageable. His mind and body will no longer work properly and soon become toxic. Substance abuse changes his life perception and lowers down his potential in becoming a better person.
While there are no perfect relationships, it is important to distinguish between needing to smooth out some problems and being in an essentially unhealthy situation. — LESLIE BECKER-PHELPS, PHD
How Substance Abuse Affects Your Partner
When your spouse is under any influence of drugs, his healthy ideas are limited to the things that he only wants to believe in. He will no longer see you as something that encourages his growth, but rather a person that tries to bring him down. It will cause a lot of complication to your marriage because substance abuse will support his negative thoughts, doubts, and fear. In most cases, it directly pushes your significant other to commit crimes as well as verbal, psychological, physical, and emotional violence. The addiction will limit his capabilities to act normal and will tend to develop a lasting impact on you and your children’s lives. Your partner’s way of thinking will no longer support his health and will eventually tear down your family as well.
What Can You Do?
Any type of addiction is dangerous to the family. As a member of the unit, you have to take into consideration as to where you should put your priorities first. When your spouse’s substance abuse is already putting your family at risk, you have to take actions and save everything that you can from the damaging situation. You have to motivate yourself to work on the positive things that can make your significant other realize your family’s worth.
Both partners must understand the importance of the process, the need for help, and the willingness to invest in the future of the relationship. — Deidre A. Prewitt, MSMFC, LPC
Dealing with a person who suffers from addiction to any form of drugs is exhausting, terrifying, and damaging. You need to be physically brave and mentally strong to be able to fight for your family’s overall development.