Top Signs Your Partner Has a Substance Abuse Problem


There are signs your partner has a substance abuse problem that you might be missing. Nobody wants to have to admit that their loved one has a problem with drugs, but sometimes it happens. By not acknowledging the issue, you might be doing more to the problem than if you were, to be honest with yourself.

So, what should you be looking for? Should you come out and just ask your partner what’s going on? There are so many different questions that those with partners who abuse substances have, and so many worries.

How Substance Abuse Affects Whole Families

One thing that you should consider is how substance abuse affects an entire family. On one level, you’re likely already feeling the effects of your partner’s substance abuse. On another level, though, things can get really bad, and depending on what your partner is using, you might find that things get scary, too.

Substance abuse doesn’t just affect the user. Finances can suffer because the person in the family who is using is likely taking money from the bank account. At first, this might not be too much of a problem, but as substance abuse becomes a problem, more and more money is spent to stay high, and that’s more and more money that comes out of the pockets of a family.

The absences and lying are often an issue with substance abuse, too. Most of the time, when we’re in a healthy relationship with someone, we spend time. We might not know every move our partners make, but we have a pretty good idea of where he goes each day. When you’re in a relationship with someone that has a substance abuse problem, you’re likely to want to know where he disappears to each day and not get the answers you deserve.

Your partner might also lie to you about almost anything. This is tough because a strong relationship relies on honesty. Without that, your relationship can really suffer.

You might find that when your partner abuses substances, you spend a lot of time arguing with the rest of your family about her habits. You’re trying to defend her because you love her, but your family sees something entirely different. This causes problems for you because you’re tired of hearing it, but you also want to have a good, happy relationship.

There’s also depression. Depression with you, because of your mate’s drug problem. You can’t fix it, your relationship is falling apart, and you simply don’t know what to do. Many of us become depressed because we find our partner is struggling with an addiction. It’s normal because if it weren’t for the addiction, we would still be happy in love.

Top Signs that Your Partner has a Substance Abuse Problem

So, what are the signs that your partner has a substance abuse problem? How can you know that she’s not just being shady because she’s trying to save up to buy you that really beautiful, expensive car you wanted? Is there any way to be able to identify certain behaviors without looking like you’re paranoid? What do you do when you do discover that your partner is using substances?

  1. Your loved one seems to be “different,” or “messed up,” fairly often. When we abuse substances, our personality changes. You’re going to notice these changes in your partner pretty quickly. You likely know him the best, so you’ll see signs that others don’t. When he’s high, his pupils might be dilated, his eyes might be glossy, his voice might change, he might be fidgety or extra tired, and you may notice that his attitude changes.
  2. Your partner might disappear for long stretches of time. You know when your partner is missing for hours and hours? Maybe you’re working during the day so you don’t know, but what about the weekends or on your days off? Is your mate still going places for a long time and coming back seeming different? Does she do anything she can to avoid telling you where she’s been?
  3. You might find that your partner is lying. Often, when we see a substance abuse problem in our partners, we think that they are cheating on us. What your partner is doing probably doesn’t have anything to do with having an intimate relationship with anyone else right now, but it might have a lot to do with developing an emotional affair with her DOC (Drug of Choice). Cheating comes with lying, and chances are, your partner is doing a lot of lying right now in order to hide her substance abuse problem.
  4. You might be missing money. In your account, that is. Your partner might be taking money from your joint bank accounts and telling you that it is going to groceries or other things that you need. The thing is, when you look, you never quite find all the products that the expense seems to justify. You might also find that your mate is missing money. Or, he’s suddenly asking you to borrow money for things like gas, because he just doesn’t have any extra. He might not give you a reason, or he might make up lame excuses that leave you scratching your head.
  5. He might not be working or may have problems with work. We often take our mate’s word when it comes to work and what happens there. It’s not like we can just ask her boss, after all. The thing is, that when she starts struggling at work, you might feel like you’re getting the full story from him for a while until it starts to look like he’s being picked on. Getting sent home, getting suspended, and even fired. The thing is, most bosses don’t go out of their way to make employees miserable. However, if your partner isn’t meeting her job expectations, it’s possible that there is something going on. Calling in, not getting shifts or being told to go home, suspension, write-ups, and eventually being fired is often a sign of substance abuse.
  6. Sharp personality changes. When a person has a substance abuse problem, they are likely pretty close to being addicted. When a person has an addiction, the idea that they might not get high for a while can be pretty unnerving. This is when his personality is going to shift. Suddenly, he’s not feeling well. Then he’s getting crabby, and it might just be that “you don’t understand,” what’s going on with him. In truth, your partner is probably experiencing withdrawal symptoms.
  7. New friends. This one can become a real problem, especially if your partner is bringing these people you

    don’t know into your house. Since you’re in a relationship with your partner, many people feel that things are equal. This means respect. Yes, you want to respect your partner’s friends, but you also want your space respected. Chances are, your partner’s new friends aren’t going to be so caring. Especially if they know that your partner has to hide her behaviors from you. If you find that your mate has a substance abuse problem, though, you will also likely find that she has a slew of new friends to go with it, and she’s going to expect you to accept all of them.

  8. Loss of interest in responsibilities. You know those little people that you have running around your house? One of the biggest signs that your partner has a substance abuse problem is the lack of desire to make sure that those little people are cared for. Oh, sure, they play the part, but there is something distant and distracted about your partner these days, and that means that he’s not focused on what matters.
  9. Picking fights and finding flaws with you. A person with a substance abuse problem is likely to pick fights with you, and it’s not because they are really there, it’s because a fight is an excuse to get mad and leave, and when you’re fighting and leave, you’re unlikely to ask your partner when he returns because you’re angry. Not only that, but when people know that they have a substance abuse problem, they also know what they are doing to you, and want to give you more of a reason to hate them. They don’t like themselves right now, either.
  10. Changes in appearance. Sometimes, when your partner has a substance abuse problem, they will begin to change. You might notice weight gain or loss, shadows under the eyes, changes in how your partner dresses, does makeup and hair, and even in how well she takes care of herself. It might seem like nothing, but to you, it’s a sign of something more.

What to Do When You See It

When you notice signs that your partner has a substance abuse problem, you’re probably thinking that you need to do something. Sometimes, you can simply talk to your significant other and let them know how much you care and know what’s happening. Sometimes, your partner will simply decide that it’s time to get help.

Other times, it takes time. If you can ride it out and are willing, then you need to have a plan for when the time comes to seek treatment. Give us a call at Elite Rehab Placement. Our caring counselors know what it’s like to have to deal with a loved one’s addiction and will help you to find the right addiction treatment option for when your partner is ready to get help.

We’ll help you navigate insurance coverage and financing, and we’ll even be ready to talk to your partner and help you help your loved one see that it’s time to get help.

You love your partner, but you also know that sometimes, bad things happen to good people. Now, it’s time to take control of your life and help your significant other start taking control of theirs. Addiction has no place in a healthy relationship, and yours is no different. There is help, we’re here to ensure you find it.