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How Drug and Alcohol Addiction Affects Relationships

Addiction is still a prevalent issue among young adults. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, marijuana, and hallucinogen use among young adults increased in 2021 to 43% and 8%. Many discussions surround addiction and relationships and how the former affects the latter. The extent to which drug and alcohol addiction affects relationships could be really damaging. Whether romantic, friendship, or family, substance abuse can strain relationships. Relationships on their own are already complex to maintain. With addiction in the mix, many elements that make up a successful relationship, such as assertive communication, trust, understanding, and honesty, are taken away.

Because relationships are unable to compete with the euphoric effects of substance use, the individual invests less time in the relationship and focuses on obtaining and using the substance. This is how addiction crumbles many relationships. In this blog, you will learn the signs of addiction in relationships, the effects, and how to address them.

Cedar Oaks Wellness Center is a Cincinnati drug and alcohol rehab center that can help. Contact us today to learn more about our inpatient drug rehab in Ohio.

Signs of Addiction in Relationships

Substance abuse can significantly impact relationships, and knowing the signs of addiction in a partner can save the relationship and help the individual improve. Below are some common signs to be aware of;

Secrecy and lying

Someone with substance use disorder may conceal information about their whereabouts, activities, who they were with, etc. They may lie about their behaviors related to drug or alcohol use.

Neglecting responsibilities

An individual with SUD may begin to neglect their work, home, and school responsibilities. They miss appointments and forget essential tasks.

Poor hygiene

An individual dealing with addiction may look haggard and care less about their outlook and public image. They neglect their hygiene and may refuse to heed a piece of advice to improve their hygiene.

Mood and behavioral changes

Typically, substance use disorder can change the dynamics of a person’s brain functions, affecting their mood and behavior. They become irritable and depressed and may ultimately become violent.

Financial problems

Individuals with addiction always run into financial difficulties. They start borrowing from friends and family members and engage in illegal activities to raise money to fund their drug use when they are out of options.

Physical symptoms

Affected individuals may experience physical symptoms, such as weight loss, headaches, tremors, and poor coordination.


This is another common sign your partner or loved one is struggling with addiction. They tend to stay alone and separated from their friends and family. They spend more time with those who share their substance abuse problem.

How Drug and Alcohol Addiction Affects Relationships

Drug and alcohol addiction affects relationships in unimaginable ways. The romantic aspect and otherwise are gravely affected, and the relationship could be on the verge of collapsing. Below are some ways drug and alcohol abuse affects relationships;

Trust issues

Drug and alcohol abuse can force individuals to lie about things and hide them from their loved ones, creating trust issues in the relationship.

Emotional withdrawal

Besides creating trust issues, addiction can cause emotional distance in relationships. Individuals will become less distant and more engaged with their loved ones. Emotional withdrawal is one of the banes of relationship failures.

Financial issues

Addiction is expensive and can leave both parties financially handicapped. This can put a lot of stress on the relationship.


Individuals that engage in substance abuse may care less about their partner and neglect responsibilities and commitments. They become less romantic and care less about the consequences of their actions. The other partner may feel frustrated and abandoned and would likely consider opting out of the relationship.

Communication breakdown

This is one of the significant effects of addiction. Substance abuse can cause individuals to be less open about their feelings and behaviors. Sometimes, they become defensive when confronted about their actions and behaviors, resulting in communication issues in the relationship.

Physical and domestic abuse

Addiction can bring out the worst in a person. In relationships, individuals with SUD can become aggressive and transfer their anger to their loved ones, leading to physical and emotional abuse.

A lack of communication, trust issues, physical and emotional abuse, and emotional withdrawal could plunge relationships into a catastrophic hole. If you or your partner have any of the abovementioned issues, seek medical help immediately. No relationship is worth losing over addiction. Save your relationship today!

Addiction Treatment Options in Relationships

Maintaining a healthy relationship during addiction is almost impossible. Fortunately, drug abuse in relationships can be treated. Individual therapy, couples counseling, and support group meetings can help end substance use. These treatment options encourage productive and clear communication between partners and help them develop skills to maintain a desirable relationship.

Cedar Oaks Wellness Center Offers Drug Abuse Treatment in Ohio

Substance abuse can be destructive and completely ruin a relationship. Suppose you or your partner displays an onset of some of the signs mentioned above. In that case, it is a wake-up call to seek help and support to minimize substance abuse’s impact on your relationship. If you’re in Ohio and looking for a treatment facility for your addiction, Cedar Oaks Wellness Center is here to help you.

Cedar Oaks Wellness Center is a premier facility in Ohio that offers various drug abuse treatment programs. Our programs follow a holistic approach to help alleviate the symptoms of drug abuse and heal relationships affected by drug addiction.

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