I have been married to my wife for over a year, and we have been together for three. We have nothing shared and no kids yet. I am 30 years old and have been smoking marijuana on and off since I was 18. I have quit for various lengths of times (four years being the longest) and for various reasons.
Currently, I am partaking and fully enjoying it as it helps me unwind after a long stressful day. My job (IT Support) is very stressful and I have to deal with douchebag customers every day. I will not make this an excuse to why I smoke. I will admit: I just flat out enjoy getting high at night and having a good night’s rest.
The issue is that my wife has differing values and is completely against any illegal drug. She is very ignorant on the subject and does not know the difference between cannabis and meth. In her mind, all illegal drugs are the same and will ruin your life. Her stance is it’s illegal, end of story. (For the record, I live in CA where medical marijuana is legal, I possess a doctor’s recommendation, and I legally purchase from a dispensary). There is no reasoning with her, there is no room to present educated facts, and no room to debate anything since marijuana is “illegal.” Trust me, I have tried and tried to educate her with no success. She is so ignorant to how bad our legal system is. To give you a perspective on her views: Her cousin is completely addicted to Vicodin. He pops these pills like they’re candy, and it’s clear that he needs help. To my wife, it’s fine because a doctor is prescribing and it’s legal. Talking to her on this subject on an intellectual level is like trying to talk sense to a monkey.
I love my wife, but I am reaching a breaking point. I don’t want to leave my wife, but what bothers me the most is her ignorance and her unwillingness to educate herself. I have challenged her to research her claims and I will listen to her findings. Of course, she doesn’t do it. The other thing that is really bothering me is her imposing her “righteous values” on me and telling me I can’t do this or that. To give you another idea how bad her view is: She grew up having the idea that pot smokers are rapists/serial killers (she still holds this belief). We had a huge debate/fight over her views early on in our relationship. I should have taken this as a red flag and ended the relationship right there and then. At the time I was not smoking, so I let it go.
Fast forward to a couple months after marriage when I decided to start smoking cannabis again. Eventually, she found out and I pretty much told her my whole history with it. She basically gave me an ultimatum that, if I continue smoking, the relationship will end. So by knee-jerk reaction, I said, “OK, I will quit.” Of course, that did not happen. I continued to smoke and she continued to find out. Over time, I am starting to just not care what she thinks anymore and I have started telling her that I will quit when I am ready and to let me be.
I have offered compromises such as cutting back on my smoking and not smoking around her. I have made good on these promises, but it is not good enough for her. I tend to smoke everyday, 1-2 times at night after work. I have cut down to not smoking on the weekends just for her. Still she keeps nagging me to stop, nagging me that I am a drug addict, nagging me that I care more about marijuana than I do about her.
I will admit that it’s my fault for not telling her my history with marijuana when we got married. We are here now and there is nothing I can do to change that. Sometimes, I wish she would just divorce me already. I am becoming unhappier by the day, and it’s only a matter of time before I initiate the divorce myself.
Should I keep trying to reason with her and make things work? Should I just do us both a favor and initiate the divorce? — Daily Pot Smoker
Look, I agree with your views on marijuana. I think used responsibly, and especially legally, it’s harmless. Far more harmless than alcohol, which is widely accepted and even celebrated in our culture. I’m a big proponent of legalization across the United States, not just for medical marijuana, which has, anecdotally and scientifically, been found to effectively treat a variety of health issues, including seizures in young children, but also for recreational use, too. In the states where it has been legalized, the benefits have already been obvious. The truth is, legalizing marijuana on a national level could go a long way in saving our economy.
But that has nothing to do with you or your marriage. You were wrong to keep your views and your history with pot-smoking a secret from your now-wife. You had the benefit of knowing where she stood — knowing that her views differed from your own — and you kept her from having the same benefit of knowledge. And you know very well that that bit of knowledge may — probably — would have deterred her from marrying you, which is why you kept quiet. That was super shady, and now you’re paying the price. Unfortunately, so is your wife. And that isn’t fair.
You were wrong. And now you have a choice to make: the pot or your marriage. And given that you seem to have so little respect for your wife, and your core values seem to differ, I think the choice is already pretty obvious. But know that YOU shoulder all the blame here. It’s not your wife’s job to be “open-minded” or to educate herself on a lifestyle you neglected to share with her that you embrace. You can quote all the statistics and studies you want, but it doesn’t make your omission before your marriage any less wrong. It doesn’t make you any less to blame for basically tricking someone into marrying you.
Even if you were to give up marijuana now, the trust between you two has been so damaged and the lack of respect and regard made so obvious, that it would take an enormous amount of work to get your marriage on track. You don’t say how old your wife is, but, if you’re 30, I’ll assume she’s around that age as well — still young enough to move on from you, find someone else whose values more closely align with hers, and to have the kind of mutually-respectful partnership she deserves. (And for the record, that can be done at any age, of course, but it tends to be easier the younger you are, especially if you hope to have kids). And you can find the same, too, if that’s what you want. Just please be more decent in your breakup than you’ve been thus far. Let your wife know she’s done nothing wrong, that the blame is yours entirely, and that you only kept this lifestyle a secret from her because you were afraid of losing her if she knew the truth. Tell her that you realize now that you did both of you a disservice, you are deeply sorry, she deserves better, and that, if anything positive can come from this, it’s that you both will make a bigger priority moving forward of truly knowing someone and making sure your values align before making a commitment like marriage.
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