Person I love takes drugs

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    Dear all,
    Thank you for your time and advice! Im having trouble in my relationship… My boyfriend of 2 years, who is almost 40, is a pretty amazing guy, generous, etc. Throughout the relationship it has been a challenge for me to trust, understand, accept, lower expectations, love someone as they are, etc. However there is one thing I haven’t been able to accept and it has affected us recently. Every time we go out with friends he takes cocaine, that is about three weekends a month. He does not go overboard, does not get aggressive or anything and does not stay doing it all night. Its about a couple of bumps a night. However he’s been doing this for about 20 years. He’s an amazing guy, hard working, responsible, I know this is a social and recreational thing. Never on a Monday evening does cocaine come up etc. We live together since December last year, only about two months. The house is pretty cool and before these past weekends I felt so excited and in love. We’ve broken up before about three times because of this subject.

    Ive used myself “recretionally” for about 8 years, on and off. About two years ago after I ended up having surgery to drain an internal hemorrhage being pregnant I understood I needed to change my lifestyle and a whole new process of loving myself and spiritual evolution began right then right there (I never had the baby either). And my views regarding drug and drug use changed. I can’t seem to accept it and accept the person im sharing my intimacy and building something is on a different page.

    This past weekend and the one before we went out with some friends, and of course he started taking coke. Immediately and with a couple of beers on me, I felt a bit disturbed and disgusted. I tried to control my mood but ended up saying and behaving nasty towards him. Same thing this past friday, I said some terrible things. When I look and see him taking bumps I lose respect and admiration. Obviously I feel terrible with myself and I know it is something I need to focus on healing.

    I’ve tried talking to him with love, understanding, even angry sometimes, Ive tried talking to him about self-love, about being clean, rehab, etc, but because it is not an every weekend thing he does not view it as a bad thing or problem. I guess thats where the issue lies….a difference in view points about a strong subject in our lives. Im writing here because I do not know what to do, but I can’t stay expecting him to change. You don’t stop smoking, overeating, or drinking, if its just not in you. I know this because he has promised to change before and hasn’t. is it too crazy to feel this way? am I overreacting? How can I act with love? Am I judging too hard? I feel a bit inside me it is time to part ways, and that is OK too….

    Please I’d love any advice or if anyone is in a similar situation.
    Thank you!


    Carolina – RUN do not walk for the exit. I am not being harsh but health is paramount to anything else in the world. No amount of money or help will fix it if you loose your health. DRUGS is the number one killer of not just health but also relations and its a home wrecker. How can he be responsible? Taking drugs is not responsible I am not going to sugar coat it.

    You need to ask him to give it up or give you up (there are many organization that help with these kind of addictions). Walk away my friend you will look back and be grateful one day.

    Do not try and reason with him or your mind he may be a good guy but anything to do drugs , gambling or other addiction is a down right NO. I am not sure if you have kids or if he has kids but what kind of example will this set for them?



    Dear carolinavu9:

    It is your right to not live with a person who uses cocaine. It is your right to choose to not live with a man for any reason.

    Although it is not a legal right (in most places if not all) to use cocaine, it is his choice. He doesn’t see it as a problem in his life, other than in the relationship with you.

    Fighting with him (yet again), saying terrible things to him, as you have done, is wrong. And it is ineffective. So is talking to him… yet again about all that you already have.

    Reads to me that his drug use is a serious problem for you, that it distresses you a lot. Is it not better to move out than it is to suffer… and to cause him suffering?

    * Will be back to the computer in about seventeen hours. I hope you get replies from other members before then.




    Hi Carolinavu9,

    Just putting this out there in case it helps. I’ve gone through a similar thing and it turned out it was all about me. Could be same for you. So, you see him breaking society’s rules and it makes you really angry. Is there a part of you that wants to break the rules, possibly the rules your parents transmitted to you as a child, but is unable to? Could that be the part of you that is angry, watching him do what he wants in spite of what others might think, because you want to be able to do what you want and feel unable to?



    Dear Tricia, Thanks for your reply! I do think it has to do about me, and about me feeling better and getting out of that lifestyle. As I said I too took drugs for about 8 years and have been clean for 2. I feel this rebel phase is over and I have already lived this chapter of my life, and now doubting on sharing it with someone I love but hasn’t. I get angry because, as you said, maybe a part of me wants to be a part of that again but know its not something I am anymore either. I know all persons help to reflect things about ourselves and this might be my lesson here. But not because of that it means the relationship will work in the end.

    Anita – thanks for your reply too. I guess it is better! It is better to leave than to cause both of us stress and suffering since I’ve tried but I definitely have not been able to accept his drug use.

    Buddi – I know! This has been a major topic of conversation, I would not want my kids to be around this, and seeing his lack of will to give it up is not a good sign or guarantee that even with children he might change… Sometimes Im not sure if its a boundary / deal breaker for me or a lesson to become tolerant and learn acceptance of where people are in their lives and love unconditionally…


    This stood out to me:

    I tried to control my mood but ended up saying and behaving nasty towards him. Same thing this past friday, I said some terrible things. When I look and see him taking bumps I lose respect and admiration. Obviously I feel terrible with myself and I know it is something I need to focus on healing.

    That bit reminds me of my last relationship.  We started out wonderful.  Small things would annoy me and I internalized the conflict we were having and instead of being frustrated with him, I was frustrated with me, focusing on MY bad behavior.  I was always finding fault within me, which would drown out the real issue: this man’s behavior was not in line with my own values.  Hanging out with him felt like I was violating myself, therefore I began having internal distress, and began behaving poorly/not in line with my own values.

    So here is what I think I learned from that relationship.  I need to watch that I am respecting my own values.  So if I think drugs are not ok for me, I have to look at why? What are my underlying values?

    Personally it is usually because they are not ok for most people because they interfere with a persons life goals and planning for living a healthy, happy lifestyle.  (I could care less tho if someone smokes pot for medicinal reasons, or does perscribed opiates). Additionally I do not respect/tolerate someone subjecting me to illegal stuff that could jeopardize my freedom to not be in jail, impound my car, or the crowd that usually comes with being around drugs.  (I refuse to visit a family member because I worry of the dealers and such that knock her door)

    So, you will not have the same values I do.  You will have your own reasons why you generally feel drug use is to be avoided. Yet, imo, it starts with understanding ones values.

    So here is how it relates to my last relationship.  I realized at the point that I was “bending” my values to accomodate this man…  was the same point that I was becoming “grouchy” and speaking poorly.  My behavior was a direct result of me losing my own self respect for putting up with behavior not consistent with my values.

    So rather than shame myself for my grouchy and poor behavior, I wish I would have listened to it closer.  Had I listened to my behavior, I would have heard what it was telling me:  That I was not honoring my values by behaving like his behavior was “ok.”  I was growing to resent myself and the act of behaving like something was “ok,” when my heart knew it wasn’t, was causing a rift inside of me.

    I was subconciously allowing this rift grow within me as I was unable to confront him with my values and reality.  So having two existing and competing realities exist in me is what caused “my mood.” I was feeling the effects of lacking internal personal integrity.



    Dear carolinavu9:

    You are welcome. In your recent post you wrote that you are not sure if his occasional cocaine use should be a deal breaker for you or an opportunity for you to practice unconditional love for him.

    If you tried the second, tried it better this time, what kinds of thoughts will you adopt so to help you feel more accepting of the occasional drug use and what will you be saying to yourself next time he uses?

    * If you can think what is true to reality and these thoughts will bring you peace, then it may be possible for you to accept and make peace with his behavior as you expressed it here.




    Dear carolinavu9:

    Many of us confuse “judging” with living in integrity with our values.  You value a lifestyle that is not destructive (it is not only Self-destructive but it negatively affects people around the addict).  You don’t need to accept his drug use.

    First and foremost act in love for yourself.  How can you best take care of yourself?  It is being aligned with your values and loving yourself if you not want to be around someone who is living a life that negatively impacts your peace of mind especially when you are a recovering addict.




    Wow @Lyssan your words really opened my eyes. They changed my perspective on myself and the situation, thank you so much!
    And Mark as well, thank you!


    You are welcome carolinaavu9.  Let us know what happens.



    Hi CarolinaVu9,

    It looks like you received some great advice, so I will keep mine short as to not overwhelm you, but have you talked to him about joining “Narcotics Anonymous”. I have heard people who either their boyfriend, wives, etc are in the program and have had great success. You can go to the website (I don’t think I can post it on here) and find a face-face meeting. He can at least go to one meeting. Usually they have it at different days or nights/weekends. I am in an 12 step program myself and feel like a new person, and have a sponsor to help me work the 12 steps. If there are no meetings in your city, there are phone groups on the website, where you call a toll-free number, enter an access code, the meetings are an hour long, and again, are held at different times, days, weekends. Just a suggestion. x

    • This reply was modified 5 years, 8 months ago by Eliana.

    Hello, I am by no means an expert on this topic, so you are free to ignore my thoughts or feelings, but I figured that I would give my two cents on it anyway.

    If I am being honest, I have been surrounded by chronic drug users all my teenage life, and have even used them before. In my experience,  these were not bad people, people that were lazy, unmotivated, etc.. I really hate to use those terms because they never define what a person is. We define who we are by the story that we tell ourselves.

    The thread that I observed in my long history of being exposed to such people is that many of them just want to escape. Many of them were struggling with deep emotional pain, loneliness, and a remarkable amount of self hatred.  It makes sense: nobody likes to feel pain, boredom, sadness, etc.. so we try to avoid those feelings as much as possible.  If we grow up in a healthy environment, our parents and our friends are supposed to help us learn how to deal with these difficult emotions in healthy ways, but not all of us grow up in a healthy environment, so we instead look to things to help us cope with that which we cannot stand.

    The addiction comes from our brain reaching a threshold response in which we can no longer get the same dopamine response as we did previously. The only option at this point to continue getting a bigger response is to increase the dose and frequency, which leads to a hedonic treadmill effect, essentially our mood can remain more or less the same so long as the dose and frequency is at a minimum.

    Don’t ever hate addicts. They need all the help and compassion that we can muster, but at the same time it is important to recognize your own boundaries as well.  Drug addiction takes away a lot more than it gives, and can lead to worse outcomes in relationships, finances, and can even lead to abuse and neglect.  Do your very best to encourage that he seek help, but recognize also when it is time to give up.  As hard as it is to hear, the only person that will ever heal him is himself, and he has to decide for himself whether he is worthy enough to accept help.

    Pray for him and shower all the hope and compassion that you can muster.  You are in my thoughts.


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