Whether you’ve been with your significant other for a few weeks or a few years, addiction can find a way to sneak into your lives. Perhaps it started off with a little bit of drinking or drugs here and there – you both may have thought to yourself that as long as you do it every now and then, it should be fine. Over time, though, your use becomes a little more frequent, and you both begin using substances a little more than you originally planned to because you weren’t achieving the “high” you once experienced. This turns into dependency, which can eventually become an addiction for either one or both of you. Before you even know it, addiction has control over you in a way that you can’t explain nor keep up with.
Addiction does happen in many relationships; sometimes it occurs with one partner, other times both experience it. No matter the situation, it does affect the relationship in major ways. It changes the dynamic between both partners, which can change everything if the right steps aren’t taken. A 2016 study published in Frontier Psychology emphasized that romantic love in and of itself is an addiction with symptoms of euphoria, tolerance, emotional and physical dependence, and more. Both love and addiction have similarities, both of which can affect one another. The American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy (AAMFT) notes the following ways addiction can damage intimate relationships:
- Increased fights and arguments about drinking, drugs, money problems, staying out late, not taking care of responsibilities, etc.
- Having to “cover” for a partner using, such as calling a partner in sick to work, can put additional strain on the relationship
- If using substances are the only activity that both partners enjoying doing together this could become a problem because the relationship is only thriving on substance use
- Domestic violence by either partner when using substances
- Discovering that one or both partners must be drunk or high in order to show affection to one another or to talk about problems in the relationship
By not seeking treatment, partners can spiral out of control together, leaving a recipe for disaster. If your significant other struggles with addiction, urge them to seek treatment. Speak with a professional from a reputable treatment center and host an intervention if you need to motivate them to seek help. Your partner’s happiness and health, and your relationship depends on this.
Avalon Malibu is a world-renowned, California state-licensed mental health and substance abuse recovery center. If you are ready to seek treatment to develop the tools you need to overcome life’s obstacles and be on the road towards happiness, health, and well-being, call us today at 888-958-7511 for a consultation. It’s never too late, and there are people here ready to help you.