Addiction to Drugs/Reforming a Chronic User
Hi there Jurriaan, thanks for making yourself available on this site. I'm hoping you'll be able to give me some insight for my situation.
First of all, I am not the drug user in question, I grew up in a conservative, protected environment that didn't lend itself to that kind of thing and from then till now (I'm 21) I've never used any controlled substances and didn't even drink until the legal age so I have little to no perspective on any real aspects of addiction.
My wife however (she's 28) has been a habitual marijuana user for over 5 years now along with regular smoking and before we got together/married occasional binge drinking. Now I do just want to stress that her overall consumption of such things has gone down significantly since we have been together/married so there has been some progress. She's down to probably an average of 5 cigarettes a day and a few beers maybe 4 nights a week. However her marijuana usage has I believe been much the same recently as it has been for a long time.
Now we've had frequent and frank discussions on all of what she refers to as her "naughty habits" and there's always been agreement on both sides that these are dangerous, expensive, unhealthy and one case, illegal things for her to be doing and they *should* stop. Before we got married, she expressed sincere desire to do just that and said it would be much easier with "someone by her side to help." As her husband, I've been doing my best to to patiently but firmly push her toward quitting or at least reducing her consumption. As I mentioned, the drinking and smoking are down but not gone.
However, we've been married for about 8 months now and the progress has plateaued out. So now it seems as though the will has gone from her to keep working toward being healthier and less dependent on her vices. Granted, things have been kind of hard, I moved her to a new city away from her friends (though they were all users too) and she rather hates the job she's working right now except perhaps for the fact that's where her dealer is.
But now push is kind of coming to shove. We signed a lease for a new apartment and its very specific about any illegal activity on the premises. Besides that she's been generally making noise about wanting to have a baby. Not in the next few years by a long shot, but maybe in 5, or 10, and she'd have to be clean for that, to do anything else would be just irresponsible. Not to mention the obvious several hundred dollars a month that get spent on those things.
This past weekend we tried for a purge: no marijuana at all, hoping it would help clear out her system and maybe make it stick. She's been a little bit of a terror to live with, clearly showing the stereotypical irritability and other symptoms of withdrawal. But she's been sliding backward, in less than 4 days the original resolve of "I have to quit if we're going to get this new, nicer apartment." has changed to "Well as long as I go for a walk and just do a little it'll be ok, besides if it's just a little it won't cost much."
So I guess I wanted to ask what advise you would have for me as a husband of user? I've read plenty of articles and even a book or two on how to support and help your addicted loved one, but they mostly seemed to revolve around passively NOT helping their addiction, rather than actively helping to end it.
Any ideas what I can do to help? I've been so patient and trying to hard to show her that we're moving up to a new way of live, a new apartment, a better commute, more dollars and everything else and that her addictions don't fit in there. I want her to quit so badly, not just for my comfort but for her health, our marriage our financial stability. How can I show her things will be better overall if she can cut these destructive habits out of her life?
I thought I had answered this question before, but apparently you did not receive the answer.
If you want to help your wife, it is question of learning to know why some people become addicted and others do not. It is best to read the following articles that explain why people are addicted. It can be treated nutritionally.
Drug Addiction is a Nutritional Disorder
Why Addiction to Marijuana
Why Alcoholics Drink
Alcoholism is a Treatable Disease
Most of this can treated by the adoption of the hypoglycemic diet (http://www.hypoglycemia.asn.au/2011/the-hypoglycemic-diet/
Jurriaan Plesman, Nutritional Psychotherapist.
Emeritus Editor of
The Hypoglycemic Health Association of Australia.
Author of "Getting off the Hook"
Freely available at Google Book Search
Also at Facebook for mor