Is It Your Fault He’s Drinking or Using Drugs?

Is It Your Fault He’s Drinking or Using Drugs?

Your alcoholic husband drinks.  A lot.

Or, he might be using drugs.

But why?

Why does he want to get drunk or high?

Why can you have a drink or two and stop…and he can’t?

He’s a good man.  Your alcoholic husband may be charming and know how to make people feel special.  He could be funny and smart or extra loving…before his addiction takes over.

So what makes him ruin his life and hurt the ones he loves?  Why is getting high or drunk so important to him?  Was he born with this disease?  Is it because he had a bad childhood?  Is he clinically depressed?  Or is it your worst fear…

Is it your fault he’s drinking or using drugs?

Do you worry that it’s your fault he is drinking or using drugs?

Here’s the truth:

The psychological difference between you and your loved one who has a drug or alcoholic problem is this…

If you drink or use drugs  – you have the ability to stop without a struggle.  Your brain is not sending you signals that it needs more.

Your loved one who is addicted to alcohol or drugs is internally wired differently.

When he drinks or takes drugs his brain reacts abnormally and gives him a strong signal and desire to have more.

He started drinking or using drugs for the same reasons most people start.  He was in a social setting and wanted the “positive effects” of alcohol or drugs (feeling less stressed, releasing tension, having more fun, etc.)


When he drank or used drugs something triggered in his brain that doesn’t for non-alcoholics or substance abusers.  Scientists are still trying to figure out what exactly causes this disease in over 10% of our population but some researchers have said it’s an abnormal metabolism, heredity, prenatal influences, etc.*

I’m not going to go into detail about each one of these findings because this blog is about helping you.  The loved one of an alcoholic or substance abuser.

So how can this information help you?  There’s a popular saying in the recovery world..

You didn’t cause it.  You can’t cure it.  And you can’t control it.

Next time this disease wants to blame you and you start to think it was something you said or did that caused him to drink, you can remember this post and think “Nope.  Their brains are wired differently.  He would have this problem if he was married to Cinderella.”

In other words, you no longer need to accept any blame or responsibility for the disease of alcoholism or addiction.  And perhaps next time they act up – this will help you have some empathy.  They are sick with a disease they didn’t choose to have.  You are not a door mat, but you are a wonderfully kind woman and an appropriate amount of compassion can be a good thing.

And I saved the best news for last…

The way an alcoholic or substance abuser stops craving their drug or drink of choice?

They stop drinking or using drugs.  Once they stop for an extended period of time, they will no longer have such heavy cravings.

It’s that simple and that difficult.

We are here for you.

*Under the Influence, Dr. James Milam Ph.D.

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