If your spouse has an addiction, then both of you have a problem. No matter what they are hooked on, they are channeling a lot of time and energy into feeding that addiction. That is time and energy that is not being directed to you or invested in your marriage.
Under those extremely difficult circumstances, marital relationships can wither. So can your patience and understanding. The more neglected you feel, the more you lean toward getting a divorce.
When someone has an addiction, they are truly trapped in its grip. It dominates their life. They may always be planning the next drug score, the next drinking binge or the next gambling trip to the casino. Important things like being with you and the kids, their job and their friendships can, unfortunately, get squeezed to the margins.
Its impact on your relationship
The damage that someone’s addiction can inflict on their marriage and partner surfaces in numerous ways;
- You are being abused
- Trust erodes
- Your spouse manipulates you
- The two of you rarely communicate anymore
- Your spouse feels ashamed and guilty
Addiction comes in many forms
Any addiction can consume a person’s entire being. As the website for one recovery center explains, “While research about the underlying drivers of addiction is still ongoing, researchers do understand that addiction can be physical, mental, and psychological.”
The addictions that we often think of first are gambling, alcohol and drugs, but there are many more. Someone can have an uncontrollable, destructive passion for eating, physical intimacy, smoking, buying expensive items or exercising.
Only you can make the decision about walking away
Sometimes, with help from counselors who specialize in treating this problem, addicts do recover. Both partners can then rationally assess their long-term prospects as a married couple. However, divorce is certainly an avenue you may want to consider.