My husband and I have been together for almost 20 years. We have had a considerable amount of problems in our marriage due to emotional baggage from dysfunctional family issues and previous relationships. My husband knows that smoking pot is not acceptable to me and I don’t agree with it. He has told me that he stopped but really didn’t. When I’ve asked him about it he tells me he doesn’t. Recently, we have been addressing issues in our relationship but this is an issue we are at a cross roads about. He says he smokes at night to help him sleep but it’s more than that. He also told me he smokes so that he can be numb to his feelings. We have two kids together one who is severely special needs and one who is normal. I am caught because if I settle and agree to give him what he wants then how do I teach our oldest child that its not ok to use drugs and they are dangerous and hypocritically know that I am allowing him to use. I am also concerned because there are so many special needs specialists involved in our special needs child’s life and am concerned if he gets caught or something comes up where he is immediately tested we could lose our kids. Should I let him use so long as he does it after the kids go to sleep? Am I asking too much by wanting him to stop? Am I wrong for wanting a healthy drug free family? any advice? (age 36, from US)
You are certainly in a difficult position, but I think the most important thing is to honor your feelings about it all. It sounds like you and your husband have been through a great deal together and have weathered the storms, so it is certainly worth continuing to fight for the marriage. However, there may be a point in time in which your need to protect your children out weighs your desire to keep the marriage together. Your husband is responsible for his own behavior, just as you are responsible for yours. You are not “allowing” him to use and you are not condoning it either.
Not only am I concerned that he is addicted at this point, I am also concerned that he admitted that he does it to numb his feelings. Daily use is not recreational use. You deserve a partner and a co-parent. Your children deserve a father who is mentally and emotionally present. He can’t be either of these if he is using drugs on a daily basis. I also think your concerns about specialists being in your home and possibly witnessing something and reporting it are valid. That being said, I believe that it is time to amp up your confrontation of your husband’s behaviors and demand that he either get treatment, or leave the home until he can get his priorities straightened out. I also think you could both benefit from couple’s therapy, not just regarding this issue, but for everything that you have mentioned.
All the best,
Dr. Holly Counts
Husband Smokes Pot and I Am Not OK with It
Holly Counts, Psy.D.
Dr. Holly Counts is a licensed Clinical Psychologist. She utilizes a mind, body and spirit approach to healing. Dr. Counts received her Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Wright State University and her Masters and Doctoral degrees in Clinical Psychology from Nova Southeastern University. Dr. Counts has worked in a variety of settings and has specialized in trauma and abuse, relationship issues, health psychology, women’s issues, adolescence, GLBT, life transitions and grief counseling. She has specialty training in guided imagery, EMDR, EFT, hypnosis and using intuition to heal. Her current passion involves integrating holistic and alternative approaches to health and healing with psychology.
APA Reference Counts, H. (2018). Husband Smokes Pot and I Am Not OK with It. Psych Central.
Retrieved on November 20, 2019, from https://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2014/10/11/husband-smokes-pot-and-i-am-not-ok-with-it/
Last updated: 8 May 2018 (Originally: 11 Oct 2014) Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 8 May 2018 Published on Psych Central.com. All rights reserved.