Further Reading

Should I live with a marijuana addict who is otherwise a good man?

Dear Stanton,

I am writing because my boyfriend is a daily pot smoker. We have been together for almost five years and for five years, it has been the one aspect of our relationship that I would consider a huge problem. He has been smoking pot since high school so he has quite an extensive history. Strangely enough, my boyfriend is a recovering alcoholic, went through rehab and AA and has not had a drink in over ten years. He does not smoke cigarettes or do any other drug but needs his daily joint.

I, on the other hand, do not drink, smoke or do anything and never have. The legality of marijuana is not this issue for me as there are legal substances which cause plenty of problems. It is what it does to your body and mind and overall health. Not to mention the addiction (although they may say pot is not addictive physically, only mentally, it is as addictive as can be that’s why people can’t quit). I used to try to get him to quit which got me nowhere. He just can’t. He recently moved in with me. I decided that I would simply have to accept him the way he is. His pot is really his problem not mine. I certainly never made good on my threats to leave because I love him and wanted to be with him. I realized I either had to accept it but not approve of it or leave. When he moved in, I told him that he had to keep it to one designated room. I am not thrilled with this but I guess I am too tired to argue about something he isn’t planning on quitting. He did manage to completely quit marijuana on his own last year (his descision) and kept it up for six months straight. Then he fell back into it. He doesn’t like that he does it but he just finds it so hard to stop.

For some people, this is a simple problem. They would say, “if you don’t like that he smokes it, leave him” or “if he won’t quit for you, then he is not worth having.” It is not as simple as that. He is a good man who is kind and cares about people, does many things for others and treats me wonderfully. We have fun together and it isn’t like he sits on the couch all day and does nothing. He makes a good living and is productive. I think I am doing the right thing by taking the “accept it” approach but I do feel unsure sometimes. Do you have any thoughts on this?

Sincerely,

Abby


Dear Abby,

Thank God he’s not leaving you because you won’t smoke pot! No, I’m sorry for being flippant. I guess I just think the answer to the question, “Should I accept and stay with a man who fits this description?” – “He is a good man who is kind and cares about people, does many things for others and treats me wonderfully. We have fun together and it isn’t like he sits on the couch all day and does nothing. He makes a good living and is productive.” – is “yes.” Actually, he does seem to be susceptible to substance addictions, and I’m guessing marijuana works better for his life than alcohol. Would you like him better if he took antidepressants?

Stanton

 

Published October 31, 2005