What should i do if my husband has been addicted for 15 years to meth?

by Roxanne
(Hollister, CA)

My husband is addicted to meth and marijuana for about 19 years. I'm angry and ready to walk away from my marriage. He lies and gets caught and denies it.

What should I do? He went to rehab once for 7 days and came back and starting using again.

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Something that has lasted 19 years will take a long ime to recover from.
by: Debbie Wicker

Dear Roxanne,

Seven days in rehab is not enough time to end a long-term addiction. But the fact that he was willing to go to rehab at all is a very good sign that if given the correct support, he may be willing to quit.

Addiction is a disease of the brain that once it has a hold on our brain, changes us in fundamental ways and convinces us we MUST use to feel "normal".

Your husband is likely really afraid of how awful the withdrawal process will be, which is why he continues to use and lies about everything.

It usually takes 2-3 months to completely withdraw from methamphetamine. That means that when your husband left rehab he was just in the beginning stages of withdrawal and likely VERY uncomfortable.

I would try taking him to a doctor and ask the doctor to medically assist him to minimize the withdrawal symptoms. I suspect that after 19 years of addiction he is feeling trapped in it and would like to find a way out without losing everything.

I would also recommend that you immediately begin attending Al-anon meetings in your area and working the 12 steps. His recovery is a very long -term process and and the 12 steps can explain to both of you what that process is.

You need to learn how to deal with his addiction without enabling it in any way. He needs to feel all of the negative effects of his addiction so that, hopefully, he will become willing to begin the recovery process.

Good Luck,


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