Addiction destroys anything it touches, as anyone who has been married or involved with someone addicted knows from experience. Alcohol, illicit drugs such as heroin or cocaine, or prescription drugs like Xanax or OxyContin may be the drugs of choice in marriage.

People who are addicted pick drugs and alcohol before anything else, including their marriages, their partners, and their children.

Those close to the individual who suffers from addiction also feel the impact, such as friends and family. The change in behavioral patterns of the user that the family is not used to also leads to conflicts. Below are some tips for helping an addicted partner;


You do not want to lose yourself in caring for the addict as frustration can set in and you might lash out. It may result in resentment or even a mental breakdown if the addict’s stress is adding to yours. You must take care of your physical and mental health to support this person. You need to sleep well, eat healthy foods, socialize, exercise, anything that helps keep you in good shape.


It may not seem like it, but addiction is a disease – and it’s a family disease, at that. As well as affecting the individual using, addiction can have a domino effect on their families. To understand the condition, you are facing, it is imperative to learn as much about it as possible. You might also consult with an experienced and compassionate treatment specialist.


Instead of condemning their deed, suggest that they seek treatment by educating them about the dangers of their behaviors. Despite all your encouragement, do not be surprised if they refuse to listen to you. But insist that you need to get help immediately and insist that you should get it immediately.


The hallmark symptoms of addiction are cravings for, and attachments to, anything legal or illegal. Drug addictions are commonly caused by substances like alcohol, prescription pills, and illegal drugs. Relationships characterized by trust, respect, and open communication are hard to maintain when one is addicted. 

Addiction affects all areas of a person’s life, including their relationships. Someone dependent on a substance tries to acquire and use the drug as much as possible. In such a scenario, they may overlook responsibilities or neglect the needs of their significant others. Thus, their partner will feel betrayed, hurt and angry. 

Drug addiction can have many negative effects on relationships.


When a person becomes addicted to a drug, their personality can change, which can lead to aggression and violence. The problem of addiction can, unfortunately, create an abusive environment in the home-whether verbally, physically, or emotionally. Non-addicted spouses who experience abuse from their spouses should leave the place where they are living, as well as any kids they may have.


Substances that are addictive tend to consume the entire attention of an addicted spouse (perhaps not initially, but eventually, this is the case). Consequently, the spouse neglects their obligations at home and work, as well as the needs of their family. A spouse who is addicted may end up jobless and even in financial distress as a result.

Their addiction leads to an increased burden as they shoulder each other’s responsibilities and the spouse. A spouse not living with an addiction who experiences neglect can suffer health and wellbeing issues, as well as financial instability. Anger, resentment, and contempt can often result, and these effects can be difficult to reverse, even after the couple has received professional treatment to deal with the addiction itself.


Individuals who abuse drugs frequently become secretive about their abuse and tell blatant lies. For a relationship to be healthy, trust is vital. Some may lie about who they were with or what they did on certain days or may steal from family members so they can buy substances.

Consequences of Drug Addiction in Marriage and Family

In marriage or long-term relationship, having a partner who drinks too much or uses drugs is a very difficult situation. Some people say that it can be compared to throwing a stone into a quiet pond because it creates a ripple effect and has implications in the immediate circle.

In the case of a partner who uses drugs or drinks too much, the effect is felt by his or her children, relatives, friends, and co-workers. However, it is true that that, aside from the person who is addicted to drugs or alcohol, the highest price is often paid by the addict’s partner.

The habit of using drugs is an expensive one. The money used to pay for drugs dips into the funds that would otherwise go to feeding, housing and clothing the family, paying for kids’ education, and for other bills associated with raising a family.

The expenses related to the drug use go much beyond just buying the drugs. For example, things such as overdoses, drug-related illnesses, traffic accidents are bound to happen one day or the other directly related to drugs. Many hospital emergency room visits are as a result of drug abuse.

There is also a strong connection between the drug use and crime. One reason could be that the need for money to buy drugs makes people to resort to crime. But often, violent crime originates when people do things under the influence of drugs that they would never have done when they are sober.

It is unfortunate that a lot of times, that sort of crime occurs within the family itself. In the news we see many stories of drug-related spousal and child abuse.

As drinking or drug use progressively increases, it naturally takes away more and more time away from the couple. It creates an emotional distance between the couple which is hard to get over. Many couples in such situation report higher frequency of arguments and fights that can sometimes turn to be violent.

This can turn into a vicious cycle because after a serious fight the partner with the drinking or drug problems could resort to using more of these addictive substances to pacify their stress.

Couples in which a partner is addicted to alcohol or drugs have a hard time coming out of this downward spiral. Fortunately, there is hope. There are proven ways to help these relationships and, in the process, help the substance abuser recover and rehabilitate. It is important to seek help if you or your partner is facing a problem with alcohol or other drugs.

Issues to Consider Before Marrying An Addict

It is well known that substance abuse or addiction doesn’t mix well with marriage and other long-term committed relationships.

If you are considering getting married to a drug user, it is important to first consider the consequences and potential issues that may come along as time goes on. Only you can make a decision about whether or not to marry that person you love but before you decide here are some things to understand.

Family perspective

In general, it can be said that for drug addicts, the only true passion is their addiction. The more they get into the substance abuse, the more time and money they invest into maintaining the habit. It turns into a cycle of trying to find the drugs, consuming them, and looking for money to get the next dose. Care for family, love for children and spouse and participation in family activities all move to a distant second place over drugs.

Providing for the family also becomes a problem when the addiction is the priority. It is very difficult to get and keep a decent job. Either there will be a lot of job turn over or the person may completely give up looking for a job after experiencing a few lost job opportunities due to the addiction related issues.

Christian perspective

Drug addiction is a particularly devastating addiction that steals from a person of their life, their self-worth, their family and job, their dignity, and their intimacy with Christ.

Many Bible verses can be interpreted to suggest that addiction is a sin. In the Book of Corinthians Apostle Paul warns that temptations can overpower us, but we are given the resources to overcome those temptations.

No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it. 1 CORINTHIANS 10:13

Though the use of drugs is not common in the Biblical times, there are several references about the abuse of alcoholic substances such as wine which in today’s terms can be equated to alcohol and drug abuse.

“Wine is a mocker and beer a brawler; whoever is led astray by them is not wise.” PROVERBS 20:1

 “Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery. Instead, be filled with the Spirit.” EPHESIANS 5:18

 “Likewise, teach the older women to be reverent in the way they live, not to be slanderers or addicted to much wine, but to teach what is good.” TITUS 2:3

Even though addiction to alcohol and drug is serious and many times difficult to get out of, God provides a way out. Rehab and addiction treatment can help individuals overcome the disease, and many people believe spirituality is a key component of recovery.



When an individual is struggling with addiction, there is a huge tendency that everything which revolves around the individual such as love, family, relationship, finance and the likes, are likely to suffer because the individual would pay more attention to the addiction rather than the above mentioned features.

The sad part is, the individual does not notice at first that he is addicted, until after a while when he notices that he cannot do without that particular addiction. Addiction has the capacity to adversely affect the personality of an individual, and make them different from the person whom they used to be before the addiction came into the picture.

These set of people become more secretive; always keeping to themselves, and avoiding the company of family and friends for the fear of rejection. They start hiding things from people who they once regarded as confidants.

First off, among couples, addiction is a threat which can tear both parties apart. When addiction is in the picture, there is a likely chance that trust would gradually disappear. This occurs because the addicted partner would have to tell lots of lies in order to cover up their addiction. For the unaffected party, it would be uninteresting to hear, because they are in form of excuses, which can tire them out.

The addicted partner begins to give excuses for anxiety, depression, fits of anger and the likes. Trust is an essential ingredient in a relationship, and the moment it is impaired, it can destroy the relationship. Trust is very difficult to heal, because it causes jealousy and fear. Also, proper communication is not possible without honesty, and both parties could feel isolated and alone, which then increases their emotions of sadness and hate.

Furthermore, being in a relationship with someone who has an addiction, could be likened to be in an unstable emotional vehicle, as the other unaffected party would have to make measures to adjust to every of the moods and changes of the addicted individual. At times, violence which could lead to fights, can be experienced in the relationship, and if it occurs more than usual, there is a high tendency that the relationship would be strained.

It is essential that couples who are either in a relationship or married, ensure that they do away with all forms of addiction, by ensuring that they seek prompt treatment from rehab centres.



Addiction is a disease that can affect your relationship life. A lot of crashed marriages and broken homes exist as a result of the effect of addiction on one or both of the partners. It is always a difficult situation to discover your spouse is going through a crisis and there is little or nothing you can do about it.

Addiction can make a partner that is so loving and affectionate to become so emotionally withdrawn and start exhibiting negative characters such as becoming abusive and obnoxious.

It becomes a worse situation for married couples who have kids that they cater for. They would be unable to explain their ordeal to the kids and there is a high tendency they get affected by the predicament faced by their parents particularly in school.

A child’s development and growth is usually linked to the connection they have with his or her parents. An excellent connection gives the child a sense of security and safety. However, a state where one of the parents is an addict, this can hamper the child’s progress to maturity.

It is important to note that addiction can easily destroy a marriage as any other marriage defects would such as issues of infidelity, abuse, trust issues and so on. Whereas marriage requires a partner to be selfless and always looking out for the good of the partner, addiction is entirely a selfish deed. Addicts think of themselves alone. As a result of this, marriage and addiction are two opposite experiences and cannot work together.

Unfortunately, addiction is always difficult to eliminate and if a partner refuses to do anything about it, the situation becomes aggravated. A lot of times, addicts in a marriage do not even consider their spouse and see the need to get help because of the self-satisfaction effect they get from addiction. They are blinded to how hurt their partners are and how their marriages are gradually declining.

Addiction often creates an unhealthy atmosphere in marriages. Addicts are always of the view that their predicament only affects them but that is not the case. It affects their partners as much as it does to them.

Addicts abandon their relationship, goals, interest and other responsibilities that comes with marriage and this makes their spouse feel less important than their addiction. Seeing a partner direct his or her attention on how to satisfy an addiction and contribute nothing to the marriage will discourage you and will gradually lose interest in the relationship.

Survival Stories of Marriage and Addiction

marriage addiction survival

If you are in a marriage that is struggling because one or both spouses are addicts, do not give up. Here are some encouraging stories from people who came out on top of addiction in marriage.

“I discovered my husband’s pornography problem after three years of marriage. I was devastated. We were a Christian household and we had a newborn baby. I told him I was considering leaving him and fortunately, he loved me enough and took our marriage seriously enough to change. He started going to counseling and learning how to manage his addiction, as well as educating himself on what his addiction was doing to me. Now, two years later, our marriage is stronger than ever and free of pornography!” -Mary Cassise, Connecticut

“I had been an alcoholic since I was 18. Both of my parents were alcoholics and I was simply doing what I had seen them do. To be honest, I thought it was kind of normal. When I married my husband, he knew that I drank a lot, but he didn’t know everything about my alcoholism. For the first time, I could see that my drinking was hurting someone I cared about. I tried to quit on my own for a couple years and failed every time. I almost lost my husband, who was tired of how dysfunctional I was. So I went through rehabilitation and got the counseling I needed to succeed at sobriety. I am so thankful for the support system I found in rehab and in support groups. They saved my life and saved my marriage.” -Heather Graham, Arizona

“I got hooked on gambling when my business first started making real money and I had some to play with. I’ve always been a card player, but never had any real money to put down. Once I did, it became compulsive, and even when I got married, I would gamble with money that should have gone into savings or to treating my wife, but I was selfish with it instead. It got so bad that I was losing money hand over fist, but I still couldn’t stop, even when bills were piling up. When my wife separated from me, that was my reality check. I loved my wife too much to lose her to my gambling habit.” Robert Diaz, Washington

Marriage Counseling for Addiction

marriage addiction treatmentFew things can damage a marriage the way addiction can. Addiction destroys respect, honesty, expectations, commitment and love in a marriage. No one goes into a marriage expecting to have to deal with addiction unless they do not fully understand addiction. Those who understand how difficult it really is would advise to postpone the wedding until the addiction problem is sorted out. The best remedy for addiction within marriage is not to get married in the first place, and instead attend relationship counseling. But whether or not you have already taken the vows, addiction warrants counseling and treatment. To save your marriage, begin to investigate your mental health care options right away.
The first priority is to help the addict, or addicts in the case of both spouses being addicted, get rid of their addiction. After all, it is the toxin that is poisoning the marriage.

However, the addiction itself has many complex underlying causes that require careful cognitive behavioral evaluation in order to discover and eliminate. The services of an addiction treatment facility, or rehabilitation center, come highly recommended for this purpose. They have the highest success rate of any form of addiction treatment. This process will safely and efficiently eliminate the need for the addiction to exist.

A good quality rehabilitation center will be able to offer counseling to the addict’s spouse, or be able to refer the spouse to an appropriate counselor. At some point, counseling for the married couple together should take place. A certain level of individual counseling and a certain level of relationship counseling are both important to helping both people through the damage that relationships do. The non-addicted spouse needs professional help understanding why the addicted spouse has been so hurtful and neglectful. The addicted spouse needs professional help understanding how to rebuild their marriage. Recovering a marriage from the pain of addiction is not something that is easy to do without professional help. Those who intend to take it seriously should not delay in reaching out for professional help.

Recover From Addiction Before Getting Married

addiction recovery before matrimonyWhen we think about weddings, joyous images of white dresses, cakes and doves come to mind. Weddings are a time of celebration and union, and they are universally thought of as a positive thing. But what if one or both of the people taking vows is struggling with addiction. This changes the picture perfect idea we have in our minds to something darker and more troubled. To many of us, signs of addiction in a romantic partner would be an automatic indication of the necessity of postponing plans of matrimony, if not severing them completely. But to others, the signs of addiction are either not taken seriously or are swept under the rug completely, and addiction enters the marriage.

When addiction and marriage exist within a relationship, it quickly goes from something that was left unaddressed to something that plays a major part in the marriage, and not for the better. Typically, the non-addicted spouse did not address the problem because they were not aware of a healthy way to handle it or they did not realize the extent of the problem. It is very important in a serious relationship to know when and how to address problems and conflicts, as well as to know the signs of addiction so one can assess addictive tendencies in their fiance prior to marriage. It is also possible for both partners to be addicts, either to the other’s knowledge or not. This can be even unhealthier, as neither partner will want to be held accountable for their addictive behavior.

When it comes to addiction and tying the knot, there is only one healthy option: tackle the problem before saying the vows. A brand new marriage is challenging enough without bringing a major mental health or behavioral problem into it. Addiction can only hurt a new marriage, never help it. When someone is addicted to a behavior or a substance, they place it at the highest level of priority. The addiction gets more energy, attention and thought than any other aspect of their life, including their new spouse. This will inevitably become hurtful and damaging to the relationship, and will create a wedge between the newlyweds. If you or someone you know is engaged to be married and struggling with addiction, it is wise to bring the addiction under control and end it prior to getting married, for the health of the relationship. Whether you require alcohol abuse counseling, sex addiction treatment or drug rehabilitation, there is a treatment program available to help you.

Addiction is Harmful to Marriage

addiction harms marriageThere is no doubt about it; addiction destroys marriages. This has been observed in countless examples of marriages in crisis due to one or both of the spouses being addicts. The married couples who choose to address the problem early on and receive counseling and treatment are the ones that survive. The married couples who try to ignore the problem, sweep it under the rug or simply cannot agree on how to handle it are the ones who suffer and often fall apart. No marriage has to end over addiction. Those who identify it, seek help and allow their marriage to heal can have marital success.

The first step in eradicating addiction from your marriage is identifying it. You will start to recognize the signs of addiction in your partner if you are watching for them carefully. Addicts tend to change in their physical appearance for the worse. Often their weight becomes mismanaged, their muscle mass deteriorates and in the case of some addictions, their skin suffers. Addicts become moody and emotional if they cannot access their addiction. They will show signs of wanting to retreat from social events, hobbies they used to enjoy and the company of their close relationships in order to have more time with their addiction. Their work or school performance often will suffer, and they will generally seem to care less about things they used to care deeply about. When both spouses are addicted, holding each other accountable is more difficult, but still possible.

The best thing to do for both spouses is to seek the help of a professional rehabilitation service or addiction treatment counselor. Whether this is through inpatient rehab or another type of addiction service, do not underestimate the importance of counseling. If the married couple has been living together with the addiction for any amount of time, chances are the marriage is already somewhat damaged and needs the help of a mental health specialist. Marriages that have been tainted by addiction can be saved. It is simply up to you not to hesitate in reaching out for help!