Drug addicted husband

by Linda

(Melbourne, Victoria, Australia)

My husband is addicted to ICE but has taken all other illegal drugs also in the past. When I first met him he smoked marijuana but then in the last 10 years started using harder drugs.

He would have episodes of hard drug using for days in a row and would disappear and stay awake for this period of time. He also has periods where he seems clean (I think? as his behaviour seems normal).

Of late he has started again and when he does he hates everyone but normally I am always his punching bag (not literally) he would be very abusive verbally but has never hit me but I am scared that may change.

I did leave him several times but have come back because I feel sorry for him and because I know he is normally a very nice person but these drugs have changed him, plus we have 3 children who love him so much.

I don’t know what to do, I want to leave but again have this idea that maybe he will get help and I try to drill that into him over and over but he keeps denying he has a problem then turns it onto me somehow and how everything is my fault.

What should I do?

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by: Ned Wicker

Dear Linda,

Call it a substance use disorder or call it addiction, but it is a brain disease that robs people of the ability to make good choices, it robs them of their ability to establish and maintain healthy relationships and it robs them of their humanity.

It sounds like your husband is on a downward spiral and soon it will get in the way of everything. He won’t want to be a husband, a father or a person with any ambition. He’ll just want to get high.

Feeling sorry for him is not going to help him overcome his disease. Your leaving and coming back sends the wrong message. It tells him he can manipulate you. It tells him he can do anything and get away with it.

You also say he abuses you verbally and that you believe it could become physical abuse. That should tell you a lot. Do you really want to live in the same house with a person you feel will strike you someday? Is he going to harm the children?

Ask a simple question–is your husband good for your children? You will say he loves them. OK, how much does he love them, enough to stop using drugs? You have to determine how you want to live and what kind of future you want for your children.

I would explore treatment centers in Melbourne and at the same time call Alcoholics Anonymous to seek some help and support for yourself. You need to come up with a plan to help get your husband into treatment. His problem isn’t going to just vanish on its own, so you need to have some help from professional people.

If your husband refuses to get treatment, or stop his drug use and continues to display the same behavior characteristics, you will be left with an important decision to make–to leave permanently or be a victim. You have your children to think of.

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