Being pressured by your significant other to abuse drugs or alcohol can be an emotionally trying experience. Part of you might know that you are opening the door to addiction and other health problems, but you might fear that refusing will cause your relationship to end.
Below, we’ll take a look at some of the reasons an addict will pressure their partner to start abusing drugs, as well as the potential risks of using to please.
The Pressure To Use
There are a number of different reasons why an addicted boyfriend/girlfriend will pressure their partner to join them in their substance use. The addict probably knows that what they are doing to themselves is destructive, and that a well-balanced partner is unlikely to tolerate such behavior. By recruiting the other person into a life of drug use, the addict may believe that they can protect their relationship.
For the addict, drug or alcohol use is the dominant force in their life, and more often than not, they want their partner to join them in their obsession. It’s easy to fall into the delusional belief that joining your partner in their substance use will bring you closer together, but it’s important to know that for an addict, the number one priority is always going to be satisfying their addiction. Your health and happiness will almost always take a back seat.
The pressure to use drugs by a relationship partner is unique in that there is an element of sexual leverage. If one refuses to join in on the substance abuse, the addicted partner may withhold their love and affection. They may exercise this leverage with statements like “If you want to be with me, you need to use _____, too” or “do you think you’re too good to try_____ with me?” At first, the pressure to use drugs may not be too heavy. The addict might claim that they just want their partner to experience the drug once or twice to understand its appeal. However, it is very likely that the end goal is to have their partner become a fellow addict.
5 Warning Signs Of An Influential Partner
The Dangers Of Dating An Addict
There are many dangers associated with dating someone with a substance abuse problem, not the least of which is becoming an addict yourself. At first, you may be steadfast in your refusal to use, but over time, the pressure and curiosity can become overwhelming. It may not happen overnight, but once you begin using drugs or alcohol in an attempt to please your partner, addiction is never far behind.
An addicted partner can even begin using emotional or physical abuse to pressure someone to try drugs. The use of stimulant drugs like methamphetamine and cocaine can result in manic episodes, which can increase the odds of someone becoming violent. In short, joining a relationship partner in their substance abuse can open the door to a host of potential dangers.
Seeking Help If You’re Dating An Influential Partner
If you have started abusing drugs or alcohol to please your partner, there may be underlying psychological issues you need to address. Speak with an expert to see if you are in a codependent relationship.
Ask yourself this question:
Are you using drugs because you want to, or are you afraid of what will happen to your relationship if you refuse?
It’s very important to understand your motivation for using drugs in order to approach recovery in an effective way. If you make the decision to stop abusing drugs and alcohol, you must confront the possibility that your relationship needs to end.
If you decide to get clean, but your partner refuses, you may feel like you are losing two sources of emotional comfort. However, you should never sacrifice your health and emotional well-being just to make your partner happy.
Learn how to identify a sex addiction in a spouse or partner here.