Not knowing if your spouse is using drugs or not can cause so much anxiety.  Maybe they’ve got a history of drug use or maybe you’re seeing some sketchy behaviors.  Have you caught him in a lie? Is he slurring his speech? Have you found paraphernalia?

Drug use is more common than we all want to admit. From pain pills to benzos to alcohol to pot-brownies – there’s plenty of it going around.

But not in your house, right?

Or is it?

The Maddening Feeling of Not Knowing For Sure

Wondering if your spouse is using drugs or not can have you thinking and doing things you thought you’d never do. Once I was with a recovering addict and this person had been prescribed pain pills after a surgery. I thought, “Oh no. She’s gonna get addicted.” So, I did what any codependent partner would do: I counted her pills regularly without her knowing. 

I’m not proud of it, but I wanted to know if we were headed for addiction trouble.

Good news is that I worried for nothing, but that’s not the case for many spouses.

How Can I Tell If My Husband Is On Drugs?

This is the million-dollar question.

Well, you may not always be able to tell, but there are certain signs to be on the lookout for. Now, when I say watch for them, I don’t mean go all hyper-vigilant and watch his every move.  Don’t go snooping through all his things and trailing him through the city. 

What I’m saying is don’t go and get all addicted to his behavior.

Now, what you can do, while taking good care of yourself, is be on guard for the following signs of drug use:

Physically

  • Has he dropped quite a bit of weight fast?
  • Is he sleepy a lot or nodding off more than usual?
  • Does he look like hell?
  • Does he skip meals now?
  • Is he stumbling around?
  • Slurring his words?
  • Are his eyes bloodshot? Are his pupils tiny, tiny or really enlarged?
  • Does he have burns on his fingers? Lips?

Mood-wise

  • Is he progressively becoming irritable and aggressive?
  • Is he paranoid?
  • Overly anxious?
  • Does he head to the bathroom in a so-so or grumpy mood and come out all “Oh, what a wonderful world it is” mood? Then, a bit later he’s passed out on the couch?

Behavior-wise

These are more long-term changes to be on the lookout for:

  • Has he given up doing things he used to like doing? Hanging with the guys? Fishing? Playing with the kiddos?
  • Is he all secretive? Always has his phone within reach and gives you a horrible look if you even glance at it when it beeps or rings?
  • Gets lost headed to the store, coming in hours later?
  • Makes secretive phone calls?
  • Starts hanging out with that sketchy guy from work?
  • Have you caught him in lies?
  • Does he freak out and get all angry when you approach him about your suspicions?
  • Does he miss more and more work?
  • Does he genuinely act like he’s falling apart?
  • Is money missing?
  • Is he selling stuff?
  • Are the medications disappearing faster than they should be?
  • Is he going out all hours of the night when he used to be in bed at 10pm?

What’s The Verdict?

After looking at these signs, what do you think?  You think he’s using? 

It’s alright not to know for sure. Don’t make yourself crazy. 

If you’re concerned and some signs are there, it’s time to start learning how to approach him.

Don’t run to him in a tyrant screaming, “OMG, I can’t believe you’re on drugs!”

That’s not going to get you far. 

Confronting someone using drugs takes delicacy and strategy. You’ve got to prepare and plan.

For more information on how to do that, tune in for my next blog post.