Intimacy and chemicals

I have been aware for a number of years how using recreational chemicals can impede the development of closeness in couples. The last 2 weeks in the office have really brought this home. When you are high and your special one is not,  he/she is likely to withdraw from you. You don’t  see the changes in yourself or the relationship because your perceptions are altered. It only takes a few drinks or tokes to change the energy between you both.  You  feel that you are “more yourself” or more relaxed and are likely to deny that this is a problem. It is  doesn’t meet the criteria for abuse/addiction but  it  does break the  feeling of safety and closeness. Sometimes your loved one  will join you in drinking or smoking so that he /she can be on the same wavelength . When the two of you are uninhibited you are  more likely to get into a conflict with ugly words. Non-sober fights tend to go nowhere . Today might be a good day to ask your partner if he/she is ever bothered by your recreational activities and then carefully listen to the answer.  Your partner might be unhappy about your using as it breaks the emotional connection  and they sense that you are “different”. Checking it out can give you some valuable feedback.

If you are concerned about your or your partners use of substances, please feel free to call the office at 404-320-6510 for a consultation.

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Dr. Mary Gresham