Why Your Partner Keeps Lying To You

Why Your Partner Keeps Lying To You

Does your loved one lie to you? Do they promise to stop using drugs, alcohol, porn, or whatever else their substance of choice may be? Then before you know it, you catch them using again, and again, and again? 

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I know exactly how heart-wrenching that is because my ex-husband used to do the same thing.

My ex-husband lied to me all the time.

Let me ask you a question: Have you yelled, screamed, pleaded, begged, bargained, counseled, and done everything else you could possibly think of to get your loved one sober?

There’s no judgment here. I did the same thing. For years I tried everything I could possibly think of to help him. 

You may feel exhausted and resentful that you stay up late into the night worrying about them.

I was exhausted from all the lies.

You may be trying to figure out how you can help them, and meanwhile your partner is passed out on the couch from using.

Or maybe they haven’t come home yet, even though they said they’d be home hours ago. It’s exhausting.

Then tomorrow, when they finally wake up, they’ll probably act like nothing happened, or say that it wasn’t a big deal.

They may even blame you or tell you that you’re blowing things out of proportion.

Now you’re left feeling like your heart was just ripped out. Or even worse, you may believe what they’re saying. 

Before we continue, I want you to know a few things: This is not your fault.

You’re not blowing things out of proportion.

And you’re not alone. 

Now, you may decide to try to talk to them. This is when you may choose to yell, bargain, or just simply try to explain all the pain they’re causing. 

You want them to know just how awful they were last night. And how much they hurt you, and the family.

You’ll remind them how they promised to stop using, but yet again, they’ve broken their promise. 

So why does your partner keep lying to you? 

Because they know the drill. They know that if they just nod their head and act like they’re listening… eventually, you’ll stop talking. And then they can get on with their day and go back to drinking or using. 

This is your routine, and they’ve learned it. You react by crying, sulking, begging, yelling, or whatever. Your partner listens, says sorry, tells you how much they love you, and makes you feel special. Then drinks again. 

Let me share a loving truth with you: they’re just promising to stop so you’ll get off their back. 

I know that may be hard to hear. It was for me too. 

Do you want them to stop?

Of course you do. We all do. So, how do you get your loved one to stop lying to you?

Don’t ask them to promise they’ll stop. 

Here’s the truth: They know they’ve got a problem. And they know it needs to stop.

They might not act like it, but they know what’s really going on. That this addiction is killing them and your relationship. You don’t need to remind them.

And if we look at the past as a testament to the future, reminding them does no good. 

So here’s my advice: Base your decisions on what your partner does, not what they say.

For example: do they tell you that their family is more important than their addiction? If so, does that line up with their choices? Do they choose their family (and you) over the drugs, alcohol, porn, or whatever else it may be? Trust their actions, not their words. 

Do they tell you they love you. And that you’re so good they don’t deserve you? But then a week later, they neglect you by going to the bar, drinking on a special occasion, or leaving you to attend an event alone? 

Pay attention to their actions, not their words.

You may be wondering when you can trust their words again. And that’s a great question. 

You can start to trust them after twelve months of sobriety.

Don’t feel guilty if they’ve stopped drinking for three months and you still don’t trust them. They truth is that they’ve done a lot of damage and it’s their job to rebuild trust with you, one choice (and action) at a time.

You’re a smart woman. Don’t let this disease fool you. You know the truth. And instead of listening to their words, watch their actions.

You know this isn’t your fault. And that you did nothing to cause this. And when they guilt you for not trusting them, they’ve earned that lack of trust by letting you down time and time again.

You can let go of that guilt, sister.

There’s not guilt there to be had. Simply let it go, and know that, in the depths of your heart and mind, you know the truth.

Questions from our community:

Does alcohol change your personality?

It certainly can. Many people know that alcohol can make you more “relaxed”. The truth is that alcohol is a brain-altering substance that connects to your dopamine receptors, so yes, it does change the way you act. The specific ways it changes depends on the person, their circumstance, and whether or not they suffer from addiction.

How can you tell if someone has been drinking?

In this community, we believe in your intuition. Here’s the loving truth: You know when your husband (or partner) has been drinking. You know exactly when. You can feel it in your bones, sense it, smell it. You know, sister.

What is considered a heavy drinker?

The reality of it is that 1 in 3 adults drink excessively. Women who consume eight or more drinks per week is considered excessive. For men, excess drinking is defined as 15 or more drinks per week. Please remember: If someone suffers from alcoholism or addiction, 1 drink is excessive.

How does alcohol affect a marriage?

Alcohol (and addiction) impacts every aspect of a marriage. From foundational elements like trust, commitment, and communication, through the life of a marriage including children, sex life, and the health of the entire relationship. Addiction penetrates a marriage. Knowing how to handle the disease is essential.

Ready to learn more about trust?

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Michelle Anderson

Michelle Anderson

Michelle Anderson has over 10 years of personal experience with loving someone who suffers from addiction. She was married to a good man who suffered from addiction to alcohol, illegal drugs, and pornography. She's used her experience to create powerful resources for women in the same circumstance. Using her own personal experience, combined with years of research and studying, she presents ideas, tips, and tools on how to handle this disease, and take care of yourself, and your family.

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