New readers, welcome to Dear Wendy, a relationship advice blog. Read some of the most popular Dear Wendy posts here. If you don’t find the info you need in this column, please visit the Dear Wendy archives or the forums (you can even start your own thread), do a search in the search bar, or submit a question for advice at wendy(AT)dearwendy.com.
Since the wedding early last year, he has not upheld his part of the agreement, and I am very annoyed. We have tried to discuss it rationally, but I shut down in frustration during the conversations. This has all sort of exploded in the past two weeks, and it has lead to lots of bickering between the two of us. I’m frustrated for two reasons: 1) he’s not upholding his part of the agreement; and 2) whenever he gets the urge to smoke, he would like me to reiterate why we made the agreement, and I’m tired of having the conversation over and over again. (He does agree that one or two times a week is a good frequency, but he he just can’t seem to adhere to it).
We’re at a stalemate on this issue, and it’s created more cranky evenings in our home than I care for. Do I just need to suck it up and have the conversation a thousand more times? Should I tell him to deal with it on his own? (Just for the record, we live in a state where marijuana is illegal, and a positive drug test or citation would have very detrimental effects on his career). — Pot My Problem
I don’t understand — if smoking weed is a big deal to you, why did you marry someone who smokes every day? What were you expecting would change after your wedding that would motivate your husband to quit (or at least cut back)? Why was it ok for him to smoke as much as he wanted before you got married but not after? And if your big concern is the illegality of marijuana where you live, what difference does it make if he smokes once a week or every day? Illegal is illegal. Your argument about it being illegal doesn’t hold much water if your compromise is to “allow” him to smoke a couple times a week. You need a different argument and I suspect you have one, but what is it? Does HE know what it is? Because that would go a long way in giving him some incentive to change his habit.
Right now, there is no incentive for your husband to change his behavior. I mean, you say you have a “deal,” but what’s in it for him? Usually in a deal, the person asked to make a change is offered something in return. What have you offered him? What does he get out of not smoking pot so often? Are you offering anything in return but the promise to quit nagging him (about that issue, anyway?). And how does he know that if he cuts back to once or twice a week, per your “deal,” that you won’t turn around in a few months and demand he stop altogether? Maybe he’s afraid that, if he gives into you now, you’ll only expect more from him later.
Look, I’m sure you have plenty of good reasons for not wanting your husband to smoke pot, but it’s your responsibility to not only communicate those reasons to your husband, but to also get him to understand and appreciate them — or at the very least present him with a deal he really can’t refuse. Without a basic agreement on reasons or a major incentive to change, there really is no motivation for him to quit doing something he obviously enjoys except to make you happy and to stop you from complaining. Is your happiness worth more to him than his own personal enjoyment? I have no idea. Is your complaining annoying enough to motivate him to stop? Again, I don’t know. It may be bad enough for him to HIDE his habit better, but that’s not what you want, is it?
You want him to quit smoking — or to at least cut back to once or twice a week. But you have to be very clear about WHY that is so important to you. If your reasons aren’t persuasive enough, I guess you’ll just have to up the nagging and hope you drive him just crazy enough to break his habit but not so crazy that he smokes even more (either out of spite or just because he needs to escape his reality). Honestly, though, I think this is an issue that would have been better dealt with before you got married. Now that you’ve tied the knot, you’ve basically sent the message that any behavior pre-wedding is acceptable since you knew about it and married it anyway.
You can follow me on Facebook here and sign up for my weekly newsletter here.
If you have a relationship/dating question I can help answer, you can send me your letters at firstname.lastname@example.org.
kerrycontrary December 16, 2013, 9:06 am
Hm, I agree with Wendy that the LW needs to better articulate WHY she wants him to cut back. I also agree that it’s ridiculous to assume that someone is going to change the day after you get married. That’s like expecting a man who cheated on you 10 times before to be faithful all of a sudden just cause you are married. But if he’s smoking everyday and “can’t stop” then I’m going to go out on a limb here and say he’s psychologically addicted to weed. He’s using it as a drug to deal with every day life. Has he ever run out? And hes gotten super cranky and irritable? Yeh. Asking him to cut back is like asking an alcoholic to have only 1-2 drinks a week. He actually might need an outpatient recovery program or something. The one thing that is clear here is that weed is more important to your husband than you are at this point.
Wendy December 16, 2013, 9:35 am
I definitely wouldn’t go so far as to say weed is more important to him than his wife is or that he needs a recovery program. It’s a habit for him — one that his wife more or less accepted BEFORE they got married, so it’s probably hard for him to understand why she can’t accept it now (Especially since she seems willing to accept it in small doses).
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 9:45 am
So glad you said this Wendy. It bugs me when people frame it as you are choosing it over your partner or its more important than your partner. I think that’s ridiculous.
kerrycontrary December 16, 2013, 9:58 am
I don’t know, if I asked my spouse to not do something because it affected my life and his life, and he decided to do it anyways even though he said he would stop, it would piss me off and make me feel like he was choosing that thing over my happiness (and ultimately OUR happiness). I mean she’s coming home to high husband every day when she’s not smoking. That’s probably pretty freaking annoying. It’s like being the only sober person in a room full of tipsy/drunk people. Plus he probably isn’t super productive at home or holding that many intelligent conversations (I used to smoke so its not like I’m just making this up from DARE class). I can just see how this would really affect the LW and personally I would just be like “why can you just give it up!”, but like I said, I think he’s psychologically dependent on it.
LadyinPurpleNotRed December 16, 2013, 10:01 am
It depends. I know people who smoke that if you didn’t smell them, you wouldn’t know, so it’s no guarantee that he can’t do any of those things. At all.
CatsMeow December 16, 2013, 10:18 am
@Lady – right! It seems like regular smokers “handle” it better than I ever did. I’m pretty close to a daily weed smoker, and I can never tell when he has been smoking. (He smokes STRONG shit too!!!)
CatsMeow December 16, 2013, 10:48 am
To clarify in case anyone is confused: I am close to someone who is a daily smoker. I do not smoke myself.
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 10:49 am
Whatever you say pothead.
CatsMeow December 16, 2013, 10:58 am
Ha! Can’t say I never have, or never will again. 😉
muchachaenlaventana December 16, 2013, 10:04 am
In my experience someone who smokes habitually isn’t just a high waste of space. He probably acts more or less the exact same. The people I know who smoke habitually (every day or at least 3-5 times a week) is that it is honestly the same as drinking a glass of wine or having a beer after work. My boyfriend is more attentive/focused/motivated to do things after he smokes because he is relaxed and de-stressed. Honestly I can rarely tell if he has smoked or not, and its the same with my brother, my best friend etc. the list goes on. If he does act like a total stoner, gets nothing done, and ignores his wife yeah this is a problem but this is typically not the case with someone who smokes like a few hits of a bowl or a joint over the course of an evening. If someone is ripping bong hits after work every night and can’t get up without lighting up yeah, this is a problem but a few hits a night (not bong) which is my definition of habitual is a lot different.
honeybeenicki December 16, 2013, 10:13 am
I dunno, I remember the conversations being the most genius thing EVER at the time. Of course, I can barely remember what they were about but I know there were tons of fabulous ideas and intelligent problem solving skills in there. 😉 (this was a humorous comment just so no one gets confused).
MMcG December 16, 2013, 1:03 pm
but @kerry… she came home to a high bf and a high fiance every day too and that didn’t seem to slow down their courtship or marriage plans. I feel like this LW is coming from a very unrealistic place where she expected CHANGE once they were married… and not of the we have to split laundry and cooking now variety. If she didn’t like it, and was concerned about the legality (which Wendy commented on and I wholeheartedly agree with those comments) then she shouldn’t have gotten serious with a pot smoker in the first place.
Ross February 11, 2022, 10:32 am
While sometimes smoking weed can just be recreational, for others smoking can be addictive. I’ve worked with people that all day, whenever their is a small break. It just depends on how often the person smokes and how it affects their life. Nonetheless, these are things to discuss before getting married. It sounds like smoking weed was a problem before and that the LWs husband promised her he would change that for her.
Christy December 16, 2013, 9:11 am
Wendy’s advice is great, and something to really think about. But LW, if you’re looking for fuel for your fire (and not necessarily something that will save your marriage), think of this:
He’s choosing a substance over you. You’ve asked him to cut back, and he’s not. He’s choosing weed over you. And here’s the thing, sometimes it’s the right choice to choose a substance (weed, booze, animal products) over someone. I wouldn’t go vegetarian/vegan for someone, for instance.
It’s a tough issue, for sure. Wendy’s right – it’s something that needs to be resolved pre-commitment.
MMcG December 16, 2013, 1:06 pm
OR… he’s been the same person the whole time and now the LW is bringing it up as a dealbreaker since she got a ring on her finger, and it doesn’t make any sense.
I mean it could be anything… playing video games, racing cars, drinking, etc. etc…. he was doing it while you were falling in love and planning to marry him, and then all of a sudden he has to curtail doing what he has always done because now HE’S THE HUSBAND. No sense at all…
acastil5 December 16, 2013, 7:07 pm
I think this conversation of “choosing” one thing over a person highlights the actual issue for the letterwriter- control. Her reasons for disliking his habit don’t hold much water, IMO. She doesn’t mention his negligence around the house, towards her, or his job. Obviously, she knows people smoke weed all the time without repercussions. So, I don’t think she fears the consequences of his actions, so much that he isn’t doing exactly what she says. I think the husbands unwillingness to quit stems from his realizing exactly what this fight is about.
csp December 16, 2013, 9:19 am
LW, asking someone to change a daily habit is very hard to do. It isn’t addictive necessarily but like every daily habit, it is hard to break. Read the book, the power of habit. You need to decide if this is something you want to work through or cut your losses. My two ideas:
1.) is he self medicating? So I have a friend who is on ADHD medicine and weed helps the side effects. So rather than get new meds, he would just like to smoke weed. Is your husband doing this?
2.) I would say it is time to get busy. Get busy so he doesn’t have time to smoke weed. Start going out at night. Start walking/running. take dance lessons, go ice skating, start home improvement projects (paint a room in the evenings). If your evenings are filled, he won’t have time to smoke. It is hard to fight the urge to smoke if your are bored in front of the TV.
Wendy December 16, 2013, 12:58 pm
Brenda March 29, 2019, 12:35 pm
I love this suggestion. Thanks
Huggit August 28, 2019, 1:13 pm
As someone who is married to a “habitual smoker,” and had extensive conversations about it before getting married, your second suggestion to “keep him busy” is a total waste. I’ve been living in a torn up wreck of remodel for two months (in a place that I explained before we were married that I -never- wanted to live) because he’d rather smoke and “relax.” We have no furniture and he tells me I’m nagging him when I ask him to INSTALL A FLOOR.
Before we were married he would do all sorts of things with me, though occasionally begrudgingly. Now that we have a baby he won’t do anything at all unless I blow up at him.
I agree that her argument is a bit invalid, but I understand her angst. My husband and I made lots of agreements about his habit (like taking it outside) and now they’re all out the window.
Habitual pot smoking, from my experience, leads to an empty relationship devoid of intimacy and romance. Conversations are about nothing important, promises are discarded and video games or tv or munchies take precedent. Any time the conversation is brought up, the non-pot smoker just becomes “intolerant” and “needs to learn how to relax.”
I feel for LW. I thought my husband and I had a better handle on expectations before we were married, but I imagine she feels just as duped as I do. And the worst part? It’s like being trapped. I love him when he’s not blitzed and I know we COULD have a good marriage, but broken promises and lack of intimacy lead to a fragmented, lonely relationship, and only one side is sober enough to see it or care.
Fabelle December 16, 2013, 9:22 am
Eeeyah, I’m as confused as Wendy is regarding the “agreement” for what kinds of behavior is okay pre vs. post wedding? I mean, it sounds like you literally told him he shouldn’t smoke weed anymore after you two got married—& he resisted, resulting in a compromise that allowed him to only smoke it once or twice a week?
But that’s sort of a set-up for failure—because marriage, while it does take the relationship to another “level” for most couples, it doesn’t actually change each ~individual~, you know? So “after the wedding” is a poor marker for being an individual’s catalyst for change. It’s basically an arbitrary marker, is what I’m saying? So, the fact that you used “marriage” as the marker to get him to change—well, no wonder it’s not effective. Like Wendy said, come up with a more effective argument. What makes him tick? i.e. Do scientifically-based arguments work on him? Find research that says daily weed smoking is bad for him in some way, maybe? Or, like, are you planning for children soon? Find a study that says it lowers sperm count or whatever (These are just examples, but you get my drift, hopefully)
It’s up to him to make the change, though—does HE want to stop smoking weed? Maybe instead of once or twice a week (which is also pretty arbitrary; like Wendy said, it’s just as illegal once a week as it is every day) he should stop buying it altogether, & only smoke it, say, at parties where someone else is partaking? As someone who has partaken is the recreational drug scene at times in her life, I’d say it’s much more doable to reduce use when you make a rule like “no buying at all” rather than “I can buy, but only use twice a week”. If he has access, sticking to once or twice a week is pretty impossible.
GatorGirl December 16, 2013, 9:32 am
IDK, I disagree that marriage is an arbitrary marker. People use marriage as a marker for changes in behavior all the time (moving in together, sharing finances, having sex…). Plus, if it’s an agree upon arbitrary marker…then who cares if it’s arbitrary?
Addie Pray December 16, 2013, 9:41 am
This is your letter, isn’t it? Ever since you mentioned a letter by you to Wendy I’ve been on high alert. … But it’s gonna kill me not knowing so could you just say? Le sigh.
GatorGirl December 16, 2013, 9:42 am
Haha, I wouldn’t give it up even if it was 🙂
Addie Pray December 16, 2013, 9:57 am
is that code for it is? i knew it!
Fabelle December 16, 2013, 9:53 am
I get what you’re saying, but my point with that is it’s just arbitrary ~enough~ to inhibit PERSONAL change (like, moving in, sharing finances, etc. are all examples of couple-changes, not personal behavioral changes)?
katie December 16, 2013, 10:52 am
absolutely! no person changes after a wedding. a marriage does, sure, a relationship *can*, but people specifically do not.
kerrycontrary December 16, 2013, 9:54 am
I agree with this, but I think in this couple’s case he didn’t agree upon the arbitrary marker willingly. It seemed like he begrudgingly said he would cut back, but its not like its something he wanted to do himself to begin with. Like maybe a couple doesn’t start sharing finances until they are married, but it’s something they both WANT to do. If that makes sense.
bethany December 16, 2013, 9:22 am
The thing that I think Wendy is missing is that the husband agreed to cut back. He was on board with the plan (to the point where he wanted to be bugged about it if he slacked off). He wanted to cut back, too, and he’s not.
I really don’t know what I’d do about it, to be honest…
Miel December 16, 2013, 9:35 am
I guess he agreed to cut back, but that’s not enough for when he has the urge to smoke. If he has a psychological addiction to weed, he might very well have those moments of “I need to smoke” and suddenly, that seems a lot more logical than you know “not smoking”. So his wife says “but you said only twice a week and you’ve been smoking everyday this week already” and so he argues “but why should I reduce to two times a week in the first place ?” He tries to bargain every time, because it’s at the point where he want to smoke, and he already took the decision to smoke, and he just wants to keep his wife quiet so he tries to argue with her about “why would you want me to not smoke tonight?”
I guess the fact that “we agreed on this issue in the pass” is really not enough for him to push away his urge to smoke. He’s not going to stop unless there’s really something that makes him go “I feel like it but I won’t do it”.
theattack December 16, 2013, 11:52 am
But it should be enough. Giving his word, which should be gold, to his wife, who should be the most important person to be honest with, should be enough.
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 12:21 pm
But people are human. They break promises. It happens.
theattack December 16, 2013, 12:33 pm
But when they realize they’re not upholding their promise, they fix it. A promise means something. Breaking promises might happen, but it shouldn’t. It’s not okay to just brush it off. I really can’t be close to anyone who doesn’t take promises seriously. If you don’t intend on doing something, don’t promise it. Say that you’ll consider it instead, because people should be able to rely on you. Where is the moral character? Isn’t honesty important, especially in a new marriage?
MMcG December 16, 2013, 1:08 pm
Or they try to renegotiate when the promise they made isn’t working for them…
jlyfsh December 16, 2013, 1:12 pm
yeah i think this is key in most marriages. realizing when things aren’t working and being willing to readdress issues. and i mean obviously this isn’t working for either of them so they do need to talk about it again. but, i just don’t see what the outcome from this discussion will be, because both seem pretty strong in their opinions.
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 1:23 pm
This thread of advice is so good. Its like people never heard that being right doesn’t always win.
theattack December 16, 2013, 1:28 pm
I’ve heard of that, thanks. There just aren’t many options here.
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 1:33 pm
Right, there aren’t. Basically, there are 2 that could work: making a new, more reasonable agreement; or getting over it.
Telling LW her husband is an untrustworthy jerk isn’t one. Just because you get married or make a promise, doesn’t mean you aren’t human and might break a promise. If getting married means you can never change your mind or you will be called an untrustworthy asshole, I can’t imagine why anyone who is human would want to get married.
starpattern December 16, 2013, 1:49 pm
This is valid and understandable, but in order for this to work I think that LW’s husband has to actually say something like, “The agreement we made isn’t working for me. Let’s see if we can find a new solution.”
It sounds like for now, he’s just reneging whenever he feels like smoking and hoping she eventually gives up and stops trying.
iwannatalktosampson December 16, 2013, 5:04 pm
It’s weird how simple that solution is but I feel like it’s got so lost in this mess.
LW: It’s not working, obviously you have to renegotiate the whole contract. The first step to that is getting to the root of the issue. What do you really not like about his smoking. Is it the smell? The “image” of being married to someone that smokes a lot? The money?
Pretty much all of those problems can be solved. You can say you don’t care how often he smokes as long as he never spends more than X amount. Then he has freedom and you can be worry free about money. The smell is the easiest to deal with. If it’s the image of being married to someone who smokes – well maybe he can just promise not to do it around you (not agree to not be high around you, but just not like do it in front of you – go to the garage, get a vaporizer that you can’t smell, etc).
Obviously it’s not working, so think about what would really make you happy (you can’t just say only smoke 2 days a week – that’s not working) and then negotiate.
Shadowflash January 3, 2014, 1:03 pm
I am WAY late to this thread, but I have a thought that couldn’t wait:
From the lines at the end of the letter, it sounds like the thing that bothers her is the legalities (or lack thereof). Which is a totally reasonable thing to be bothered by: if he fails a drug test he could get arrested and/or fined, the cost of which comes out of their *mutual* resource pool, to say nothing of the career implications. It would have been fine while they were dating, but once she hitched her wagon to his it suddenly became a bigger deal since now it’s *her* money that gets used to bail him out of jail.
I do agree with Wendy–compromise by mutual misery is hardly “meeting in the middle”.
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 9:50 am
He probably agreed to it because he wants to make her happy. Idk, I’ve promised to quit smoking a million times, and I wish I could for my boyfriend who hates it more than the average person, but I just can’t. I’ve tried and failed. Its not as easy as making a promise and just sticking to it because you want to.
Addie Pray December 16, 2013, 9:53 am
Maybe we should help LW make a better argument against weed. LW, you could tell your husband: (1) it’s too expensive (is it? how much is weed?); (2) it’s making you stupid (does it? i mean, long term? i doubt it but maybe he would buy it; or go with it makes you stupid short term? ok, it makes me stupid short term), and (3) ….. Help, I dunno. Smoking pot just seems really …. I dunno, childish? It’s like high school called and wants your stack back. If it were legal (which come on already I don’t get why it’s not) then that would be one thing, but even then I’d think it lame if that’s all you did, every day, get stoned. But then again I have a glass of wine every night so to each his own.
fine, i have 3 glasses every night. so many nazis here!
Cleopatra_30 December 16, 2013, 10:00 am
The LW did mention that if he ever got a drug test, and it came out positive, it would be detrimental to his career. idk about you, but that is a pretty strong point to put out to him. He could lose his career and potentially ruin any future job prospects (a criminal record) :S
LadyinPurpleNotRed December 16, 2013, 10:02 am
Apparently it doesn’t bother her too much if she’s okay with him smoking once or twice a week
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 10:02 am
Ouch! Funny you mention wine every night though. I guess I don’t see the difference? Obviously if you are walking around stoned all day, you’ve got problems, but I don’t think a few hits at night is any different than a glass or two of wine.
muchachaenlaventana December 16, 2013, 10:07 am
it really is not! honestly I am probably more incapacitated after 3 glasses of wine than my sig other after 3 or more hits from a bowl.
Addie Pray December 16, 2013, 10:08 am
the difference i see is two fold – and the first point will prove my ignorance of pot: (1) having a glass of wine doesn’t make you drunk but having a few hits of pot will make you crazy and nutty and stoned for like 6 hours! (i may be projecting my own experience here); and (2) pot is illegal. That second part is enough to make me think people are idiots who do it anyway. You risk losing your job and getting in trouble with the law – that’s just stupid.
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 10:17 am
haha, I don’t think pot smokers have the same reaction as you have.
Ok, onto the illegal aspect. Yes, its illegal, BUT isn’t the punishment in most states basically equal to a traffic violation? I think so, could be wrong.
If you get drug tested at work and know you would be fired for smoking, then I agree, its pretty dumb to smoke pot.
theattack December 16, 2013, 11:56 am
It’s a major ordeal in my state. Getting caught with it here ruins lives all the time. I would probably still smoke if I didn’t have to risk my whole future for it. I don’t know about most states, but it is common knowledge that jails and prisons are full of people with stupid drug charges.
starpattern December 16, 2013, 12:38 pm
Yes – it’s not right but that’s the way it currently is. Why risk it?
MMcG December 16, 2013, 2:50 pm
Whereas in many other locations, they have made it the equivalent of a traffic fine depending on the amount you are caught with and the situation (not DUI obviously).
DC, Seattle, etc. etc. etc. have all taken steps to decriminalize small amounts. Get a ticket, pay a fine, done.
States That Have Decriminalized
The following states have passed laws decriminalizing marijuana. Typically, decriminalization means no prison time or criminal record for first-time possession of a small amount for personal consumption. The conduct is treated like a minor traffic violation.
Also, this fun map! (I love when I do more research for DW than my job, happy monday!!)
GatorGirl December 16, 2013, 10:18 am
I’m with AP, one drink doesn’t make you drunk; but if you’re high, you’re high. There isn’t any middle ground so to speak. If I smoke I’m stoned for hourrrrrrrrrs, and like dumb stoner stoned. But I can have a drink and have zero impairment.
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 10:20 am
But that’s because you don’t smoke often. If you did, it very likely wouldn’t have that affect.
Just like wine. If you never drink alcohol, 1 or 2 drinks WILL make you drunk. If you drink regularly, one or two won’t affect you much at all.
I think there’s plenty of comments on here already that show many people won’t be “dumb stoner stoned for hourrrrrs.”
GatorGirl December 16, 2013, 10:31 am
No, back in college when I smoked daily it was the same. I’ve always been one of those stereotypical high people. I’m just dumb for hours and want ridiculous amounts of food. It was the same when I was smoking 3 or 4 days a week for a year plus. IMO, it’s just like how some people are happy drunks and some are angry drunks.
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 10:38 am
That’s a fair point then. But yea, it’s different for everyone.
Addie Pray December 16, 2013, 1:54 pm
Well, I am basing it off my OWN experience with pot. I don’t have close friends who use it regularly so I can’t really speak for regular users but I suspect regular users have a different reaction than I do/did. As far as this LW goes, I don’t know why she is so against pot but I could see a few reasons why she might be because I’m against it – I guess. I dunno, if I were dating someone I liked who smoked and the pot didn’t get in the way (e.g., he wasn’t stoned out of his mind all of the time, he didn’t act crazy or weird or stupid, and it did not interfere with our activities together, etc.), I would be more open minded about it and not associate it with dumb high school kids like I do now for the sole reason that dumb high school kids are the only people I know who do smoke pot regularly. But I could get that image out of my head quickly if I met a functioning professional who did it daily. But if not, we’d probably not continue dating like it was all fine and dandy for 5 years.
FWIW I still think it’s dangerous and risky and I’m not sure that risk is worth it. I also never drive above the speed limit so there you go.
I just really can’t imagine dating someone for 5 years who smoked every day and then tried to make them quit or cut back or whatever after we married. I mean, if it was a problem for me (like if it did interfere with our time together or whatnot), I don’t see how we could have stayed together for 5 years. And so if it was not problem for those 5 years, I’d have a hard time forcing him to change post wedding just because.
I think Wendy’s advice is TOTALLY spot on for someone who may have an image of what she wants and expects (which I guess is a husband who doesn’t smoke pot, whereas a boyfriend who smoked pot was an image she could deal with but not a “husband” because then it seems/feels bad or worse or less respectable?) – I dunno. Point is, Wendy’s advice was great for helping the LW understand WHY she’s so against it post wedding but could deal with it for 5 years pre-wedding.
If it’s an image thing, maybe try to just get over that image? Or build a new image of a perfect responsible and doting husband who also smokes up every night?
anonymous December 16, 2013, 5:57 pm
I’m going anon for this one for obvious reasons.
I’m a daily smoker, not just daily, but multiple times a day. I have been for 15 years. It doesn’t affect me in any way other than providing me patience I otherwise don’t have, gives me the ability to eat (I have issues maintaining my weight) dulls out my constant back pain caused by my scoliosis. I hold down a full time job, I’ve been with my company for 7+ years, and have even managed to climb the ladder to the head of my department. I have 2 children. I wake up every morning and get them ready to go to the babysitter’s house. I play with them more enthusiastically. I’m more patient with them, and I can give them “horsey rides” and run in the park and go down the slides with them. If I don’t smoke? I hurt. I can barely function because my back hurts. I don’t eat, living with a nagging nausea feeling.
Am I self medicating? Yes. Yes, I am. But it works better than any pain pill, or shock therapy, anti-nausea meds, or anti-anxiety meds have ever done.
But you know what? I can’t drink alcohol. One glass of wine? I’m asleep. So, to each their own.
OK just wanted to give input from a “daily smoker”
LW – I agree with Wendy. Your arguments for not smoking don’t hold water. You didn’t mention that he gets stupid, or doesn’t function, or falls asleep at the table in Red Lobster…. so if he is a highly functioning “stoner” than exactly what is your problem? Is it really the rare chance that he may get a random drug test at work? There’s easy ways around those, $30 and a head shop will take care of that problem. Bottom line from me: You fell in love with him as a smoker, why can’t you continue to love him as a smoker?
Also, if you can’t come up with a REAL reason why he should quit, then I suspect that you just want to find some little way to maintain control – and you think that because pot is illegal (stupid law, IMO) that you can use the “law” to do it. Once it’s legal (by the trend, not too far off) then what will your argument be?
muchachaenlaventana December 16, 2013, 10:26 am
I am solely drawing from personal experience here, but everyone I know who has smoked marijuana for years basically its like a few hits of bud will really not alter their outward behavior at all, rather just put them at ease internally. You sort of build up a tolerance to the effects of weed up to a certain point. If you never ever smoke, yeah of course a few hits will make you really stoned (just as if you rarely drink one glass of wine will mess you up). If you are ripping bong hits and acting a lazy stoned high school fool, yes that is a problem but that would be the equivalent of me drinking a bottle of wine every night (which I think we can all agree is a huge problem vs. having a glass or two or three over the course of 4-5 hours). As to point 2 I tend to agree but idk its more of a gray line for me because really your chances of getting busted for it are relatively low if you are careful and don’t get drug tested at work.
MMcG December 16, 2013, 1:12 pm
Reefer madness wasn’t real AP et al… excellent propaganda but not real.
I get you on the legal/illegal if that’s what concerns you… but to say that pot makes you “crazy” or that one hit makes you completely incapacitated isn’t an accurate reflection of reality for thousands and thousands of pot smokers.
Addie Pray December 16, 2013, 2:14 pm
I would assume (and did) as much.
MMcG December 16, 2013, 2:52 pm
But do I get a point for referencing you in my post… maybe!?! 🙂
Addie Pray December 16, 2013, 3:18 pm
Addie Pray December 16, 2013, 11:34 am
hey can someone pipe in with how much pot costs? i’m so curious. like, i don’t know if we’re talking $10 or $100 or what. and when you tell me how much you get, i need to know what that translates to in terms of the number of funny cigarettes you can make out of the pot. because like “5 ounces” means nothing to me. also i want to know what bad pot v. good pot will run you.
come on, potheads. let’s, you’ve already outed yourself so spill it.
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 11:36 am
psshhh, I’ve been talking hypothetically this whole time! I would GUESS a bottle of wine costs the same as 3 joints??? I guess that example sucks though, because wine prices vary. I’d say 3 joints -= $20 bottle of wine? Maybe someone who actually smokes pot can answer this.
Addie Pray December 16, 2013, 11:44 am
oh ok, so definitely more expensive than regular cigarettes. it’s been ages since i bought a pack of cigarettes but i think they were like $12 a pack here in chi.
rawkmys0cks December 16, 2013, 1:31 pm
Two weeks worth for two of us is about $100. That’s every single night. If we were to drink two glasses of wine each (so one bottle) at $14ish dollars (because that’s the price of wine we buy) every day for two weeks it would be almost double that. So…perspective?
Addie Pray December 16, 2013, 2:27 pm
Yup and thanks! I appreciate you putting it in wine perspective for me, haha.
Next question: how do you find dealers? And do you do the exchange in a dark alley? Regardless of where the exchange happens, is it like “hush hush, quick quick and act inconspicuous”? and are you ever worried an undercover cop is gonna bust you? and have you been using the same dealer for years or do they change? and do you use fake names?
ok, that was 6 questions.
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 2:35 pm
omg addie. you make it sound like crack or something.
Addie Pray December 16, 2013, 2:41 pm
well i don’t know where people buy illegal drugs! and it is an illegal drug. therefore, if i were purchasing an illegal drug, even if it was just pot, i’d want to do so conspicuously! and it’s not as if there’s like a flyer being passed around my office – so obviously it is purchased inconspicuously. so how/where?
i have this theory that even if i wanted to do drugs, i would have no idea how to make that happen.
so i get it, completely respectable, functioning professionals are smoking pot after work …. but, like, how, where, and ok, do you use fake names? I would.
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 2:43 pm
haha. I think most people probably just get it from friends.
rachel December 16, 2013, 2:43 pm
Most people I know buy it from friends. I know a few people who sell – either they grow, or they have a medical card and sell what they can buy. Or, if not a friend, a friend of a friend. No back alleys.
MMcG December 16, 2013, 2:55 pm
In some places there is actual delivery where you get to see and smell different kinds… like a wine or cigar tasting!! (and yes, once I had that experience in NYC and it was amazing… mostly though it’s through friends and the connections that professionals have tend to be much better quality as well as never involving dark alleys or corners… as an adult, I’VE HEARD that you tend to interact with folks who have the same to lose that you do).
Hypothetically of course.
Fabelle December 16, 2013, 3:01 pm
My friend (no really, my friend! Not me) used to have a friend where all she had to do was pull up in his driveway, & he would hand it to her out the window. I died when I heard that, it was like drive-thru weed. haha
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 3:06 pm
I knew someone in high school that would sell it while working the McD’s drive thru haha.
kare December 16, 2013, 10:32 pm
I smoke occasionally. I used to get it from one of my good guy friends, but we aren’t on speaking terms at the moment. Here it’s like $20 for a gram or so of dro. I don’t smoke that much, so it lasts me a month. My best friend smokes about that much a week. He gets his for free though.
Honestly, I would never drink again if smoking weed was decriminalized. I feel so much more in control if I smoke vs drink. Alcohol can make me really depressed, whereas weed just calms me down. It’s like nature’s valium. You also don’t blackout when you smoke weed (or at least I never have), have hangovers, etc. Obviously it’s not the same for everyone, but I’ve never had problems with it.
rawkmys0cks December 16, 2013, 4:18 pm
We originally found ours through friends. And then this dealer “sold” his business and clients to another dude, who we also like and DELIVERS TO OUR FRONT DOOR WHENEVER WE WANT! It’s amazing. We just text him and he comes over and we do the transaction inside the door to our apartment. We don’t really worry about getting caught, we’re in the privacy of our own home, ya know? We’ve been using this guy for almost 2 years. I’m pretty sure he uses a fake name, but we don’t.
GatorGirl December 16, 2013, 11:42 am
Haha. The range is insane. I don’t know that it can even be simply explained. It’s like wine…there are $4.99 bottles up to the sky.
Addie Pray December 16, 2013, 11:46 am
but based on what? quality? like, is $100 pot per se better than $5 pot?
or is it based on taste that varies? like i know a lot of $50 bottle of wines that i think are just ok but my $8 bottle i buy regularly tastes the BEST!
or is it based on region? like, is pot in chicago more expensive than pot in the ‘burbs like cigarettes are?
GatorGirl December 16, 2013, 11:54 am
Availability definitely plays into the cost, so does quality of the weed, quantity of it (like bulk discount), also who you’re buying it from.
I too prefer $8 bottles of wine, but shitty weed really is shitty.
rawkmys0cks December 16, 2013, 1:34 pm
I think the price of pot varies by region. In NY its usually like $50-$60 for what amounts to a week’s worth of pot for two people in my household (1/8th). That’s for what I would consider “good stuff” but there’s not really a way to shop around for it, at least with the way we buy it. Our dealer only has what he has, but the quality is pretty uniform across time.
iseeshiny December 16, 2013, 2:48 pm
That’s the price for an eighth in St. Louis, too. So I’m told.
MMcG December 16, 2013, 2:57 pm
Going rate in DC too for decent quality stuff… or so I hear.
camille905 December 16, 2013, 4:31 pm
Also the price in AR.
Addie Pray December 17, 2013, 6:33 am
This has all been fascinating you guys, so thanks! I really wanted to know and wasn’t asking to be a dick or anything.
katie December 16, 2013, 11:44 am
why dont you take a trip to denver after jan 1 and find out yourself?? haha
theattack December 16, 2013, 12:04 pm
Back in my early college days, I would buy an eighth of an ounce of weed for around $30-40. That would be good but not great weed. It would last me and my boyfriend about a week of smoking a couple times a day because we were worthless potheads. Good tasting, strong, but not mind-blowing and ridiculous. When I first started smoking in my tiny hometown as a teenager though, I could only get nasty dirtweed for $25-30 for a whole quarter of an ounce. It was nasty and not very strong. A quarter of an ounce is a lot for one person’s personal stash, but it was low quality so you had to smoke a lot of it. (Sidenote: That’s why it’s better to buy good mid-grade weed. If you’re caught with it, you probably have less on you because you need less to get high, and you’re not going to be in as much trouble). Really good stuff costs a pretty penny, and if you take one hit you’re stupid blasted for the whole night, I don’t care if you smoke every day or not. Unless you’re Snoop Dogg, you can’t smoke some of the higher end stuff and be a functioning person.
Oh, and I should add that the $30-40 for midgrade was usually a slightly discounted price from a close friend. Keep in mind that where I live the cost of living is also lower than where you live, so I’m betting that’s reflected in the price. I’ve also spent closer to $50 for similar stuff before from someone else during a dry period around here. There are market fluctuations just like anything else.
A La Mode December 16, 2013, 2:23 pm
In southeastern Arizona, you can legally purchase pretty strong and awesome marijuana (like, I have seen it send seasoned old hippies who have been smoking for half a century into unexpectedly deep happiness) for $100 a quarter ounce (“White Widow”). Or $9.15 for a single joint if you want to waste your money. That’s if you have a card, though. Runs between 200-400 illegally, depending on who you know in my town (and if you want to buy from stateside hippies, middlemen, or cartels).
Bad pot (ditch weed), you can illegally buy the same quantity of marijuana for $20.
BreezyAM December 16, 2013, 5:38 pm
The desire and impetus to change did not come from him. This is where the LW is missing things. You cannot control or change someone. He has to want to. Genuinely. Not just to “keep you”. Right now he’s comfortable with his weed use. I hate to say this, but if this was an issue you should not have married him, and should have moved on rather than coerce him. I’m not saying someone can’t share their needs and desires. I’m saying coercion doesn’t work. Just move on. I’m not saying move on now, I’m saying you should have then if it was REALLY that big of a deal. But now you’re here. And I suspect you’re really mad at yourself for being dumb enough to think he would change (hey I been there). So let it go. Stop making this YOUR issue. Let it be his. Let him get in trouble for it. Not your problem. Sure it has an effect on you and your marriage, but let him own this. You’re way too up in his business about his personal habit. He has no time to figure out on his own he needs to stop while you’re managing it for him. Read some al-anon stuff. You come off as really controlling here. Not in a mean way, just, this super is not your problem. Once you get off his ass about it, he can figure that out. Right now you’ve simply turned it into you being a big ol’ meanie. He has no time to notice he needs to stop.
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 9:41 am
I don’t see anything wrong with smoking weed, so my comments will be biased.
What’s the big deal to you LW? Putting aside your agreement and his false promises (which might not be easy), what’s the big deal? How does it affect YOU, if at all? I’m curious if you’ve asked yourself this question.
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 9:43 am
Also, I don’t think its addictive, but it is helpful to a lot of people. People’s minds can race, can’t sleep, can’t relax. If it doesn’t affect any part of your life (meaning, you are still productive, not missing work, etc.), I think its a good thing for people.
painted_lady December 16, 2013, 10:08 am
For me anything that can/would affect finances affects the partnership and therefore both people in it. Walter got into this really awful habit of getting pizza five times a week at a local joint, and getting a beer while he waited for the pizza. That gets really expensive, and when I’m paying the overwhelming majority of our bills, that shit gets terribly expensive and I got really tired of eating leftovers out of the microwave while he was coming home with a freshly baked pizza every night, and yet he didn’t have money for bills. I get to say he has to stop eating so much fucking pizza. If this is something that can cause the LW’s husband to lose his job and take a hit to his career as a result, she gets to say she’s uncomfortable. Even if just a couple times a week causes him to fail a drug test, I think it’s fair to say he ups his chances of getting busted if it’s daily both because of the number of times a police officer might catch him, and because of the amount he’s buying. And being married to a criminal might negatively affect her and her career, and it will cost money in court if he gets caught. It affects her because it does.
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 10:33 am
I can’t disagree on it affecting her if he fails a drug test, but she was ok with a couple times a week, so that’s obviously not a big concern to her.
As to it being so expensive it fucks up your finances, idk, you would have to smoke a LOT of expensive weed all the time I think. Way more than it sounds like he’s smoking.
katie December 16, 2013, 10:35 am
yea, i mean to me the finances part isnt something that the LW is allowed to just unilaterally decide- she can definitely decide its too much, and figure out a plan from there, but like with PL, i assume that walter still gets a pizza sometimes? right? because thats reasonable.
i mean really, all we need is shelter, a few articles of clothing, and food. anything past that is something that a partner could then “outlaw” because its too expensive. you gotta compromise on that stuff. if your partner loves x, but you think its too expensive, you cant just decide they cant have/do x anymore.
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 10:40 am
Good point katie. I mean, if all you eat is vegetarian food but your partner decides its too expensive for your budget…
And unless LW is supporting her husband financially, I can’t see how the Walter/pizza thing comes into play. I’d be pissed too if I were paying someone’s bills and they were buying pizza and weed with my money. haha.
painted_lady December 16, 2013, 11:28 am
Yeah, the comparison isn’t quite the same. But ultimately, the LW doesn’t need a reason that is “good enough” for us or for anyone. She’s stated she isn’t okay with it, and her now-husband agreed. If he hadn’t, she would have every right to have decided that was a deal breaker. Do I think she absolutely should not have married someone who was doing something she seems to view as a deal breaker? Hell no. But she gets to decide what she’s comfortable with, and he gets to decide what he’s okay with in compromise.
jlyfsh December 16, 2013, 9:54 am
Yeah the positive test thing is null and void as part of the argument if you’re ok with it once or twice a week. It’s kind of like not using a condom, all it takes is one time.
Second, I’d be more interested in what the conversation was like pre-wedding. What are your issues with weed besides the illegality? Is the issue how he’s acting when he’s smoking? Like do you feel that he is not putting in enough effort at home, in the marriage, etc? Because, that is a separate issue from the weed almost. And could happen if he was smoking or not. And should be tackled separate.
I feel like weed, alcohol, drugs, etc are big issues. So big that they should probably be more deal breakers than something you compromise on. For example I would not want to be married to someone who smoked (pot ore regular cigarettes to be honest). But, after I found out I would have been honest and told him (and would need to be honest with myself) that I couldn’t be with him for that reason. I feel like you both set yourself up with failure with that agreement.
Cleopatra_30 December 16, 2013, 9:57 am
I think it is ridiculously unrealistic to ask ANYONE to go cold turkey on any kind of substance, especially when it is not their own choice. When someone says i am going to quit XYZ because it is bad for my health, it is affecting my mental state etc., it is a personal goal they have set for themselves and something they want to actually change in their lives. From what the LW said, her husband is only doing this because she requested him to. Although that is no reason not to stop, it isn’t something he chose to do on his own. I think he needs to make his own effort into deciding whether he wants to quite or not and have some good valid reasons. Future family/kids, his job, his own mental state, health etc. If you do want him to quite help him and do it slowly and progressively. It seems like it is an addiction he has. It will take time to get over it. But he must want to quite as well for this agreement to work and be successful.
Nookie December 16, 2013, 9:59 am
I can only relate this one to myself, it seems everyone’s got a different perspective on this one. (Nice it’s not cut and dried – and there’s your pot pun for the day). I categorically couldn’t be with a habitual pot smoker, I knew more than a few back in my bad days and I couldn’t cope with the lack of motivation, the space out – they’re in a completely different headspace.
So I’m really sorry LW but if the pot bothers you, you should’ve made it clear from the get go.
But that being said, like AP says maybe think of some ways why it’s not good to smoke every day: the slowness, the $$$. And maybe start like a ‘pot jar’? Where you can both put money to spend on something together? If he really wants to stop, he might be able to with some positive benefits. But if he doesn’t… well, you’ve got a real problem.
Addie Pray December 16, 2013, 12:29 pm
New rule, every comment that refers to AP gets two thumbs up!
Addie Pray December 16, 2013, 12:29 pm
but whoops i can only like it once so you’ll have to like it yourself too.
Ross February 11, 2022, 10:44 am
Get the issue assessed. A counselor, independent of the relationship can properly asses. It’s clearly impacting the relationship. So that’s a good place to start. As someone that works in the field, Cannabis use depending on the dependence it can be a disorder. But overall this couple constantly arguing, so getting help on communication would be a good start.
katie December 16, 2013, 10:07 am
im BAAACCCKKK!!! haha
i dont know about this one. one on hand, i REALLY agree with wendy that this guy wasnt going to change after marriage. thats just…. not how people work. and believing differently is living in a dream world a little bit, i think. and, yes, i get that he agreed to it, and that does make him shitty.. but again, this is what he has shown you to be his character.
my advice would be either take it or leave it. this is your husband, and he has now proven that he cant or wont stop, and that pot is important in his life. this is the reality. i mean i also dont really care about pot, except its illegality, im from denver, whatever… so maybe for your own reflections/decisions, put something in pot’s place? like, what if it was that your husband was a big shopper? or…. that your husband continued to use/keep guns despite your not liking guns and not wanting them in the house? or something like that.
Annie December 16, 2013, 11:45 am
Not using substances seems (to me) to be a lower cost of doing business than being ok with your partner using substances. For instance, I only drink about once or twice a month now because my boyfriend doesn’t drink and he doesn’t really like to be around booze. I used to drink more regularly, but I’d rather he be comfortable than have a glass of wine every night.
But at the same time, if he were vegetarian, I wouldn’t give up meat for him, and I’d trust that wouldn’t be an issue for him. (But I wouldn’t expect him to ask me to stop eating meat. I would cut back, though, mostly because I don’t cook.)
TECH December 16, 2013, 10:07 am
Everyone is going to say the LW and her husband should have worked this out prior to getting married, which is true, but that doesn’t help her now.
Wendy is right, she needs to make a better argument to her husband. It could be the expense (weed ain’t cheap.) It could be his health (weed does have health consequences if you smoke as much as he does.) It could be his behavior after he smokes weed (he might act really out of it or dumb after he smokes.) It could be the smell on him or in the house. It could be that you don’t want to raise children with a father who smokes daily.
There are a lot of really great reasons for him to not smoke daily. But have you ever heard the expression “A man convinced against his will is of the same opinion still?” I think that’s what you’ll run into here, LW.
He has to quit or cut back because he wants to quit or cut back. I used to be in a relationship with someone who smoked a lot, and while it wasn’t the sole reason for our breakup, I just realized I kept trying to change him. I made persuasive arguments for him to cut back, but he just didn’t agree with me, so he didn’t. And I started to realize that trying to change him into the man I wanted him to be was a recipe for disaster.
But you two are married. And you should try to fight for your marriage. There is a lot of literature about marijauna addiction. It is a thing. I think you should approach this as the addiction that it seems to be. Some may disagree with me, but professional help may be in order here.
Our society has developed pretty casual views about pot smoking. And while it’s not as bad as many other things, his addictive behavior does have a really detrimental affect on your relationship.
jlyfsh December 16, 2013, 10:18 am
But, I don’t think much will help her. She basically has two choices. Either deal with the fact that her husband smokes (Which in her letter what does let him deal with it on his own mean anyway? Assume he’ll try and quit because he wants to?) or she can keep fighting a battle that it seems she won’t win. Like you said he has to want to quit. And he doesn’t seem to want to. No matter how many times she fights with him, she can’t make him quit. If the person doesn’t think they have a problem you can’t make them think they do. And I mean she could threaten to leave if it gets bad enough, but if you’re going to do that you have to be serious about it. And actually leave when it comes down to it.
CatsMeow December 16, 2013, 10:15 am
My guess is that LW would actually prefer him to quit altogether, but in an effort to compromise, agreed on 1-2x/wk. I think Wendy and everyone else is right: You need to decide why this really bothers you and figure out a way to communicate it. I think that “This is what we agreed on” won’t work anymore because it seems as though he no longer agrees.
What is it about the smoking that bothers you? Do you not like how he acts when he is high? Is it the illegality that concerns you? Is it because you want kids and want him to be able to stop before you have a baby? If you lived somewhere it was legal, would you care if it was every day vs. 1-2 days?
For the record, I know people who smoke every day whose personal and professional lives have not been affected at all. This isn’t the case for everyone, but it can be done. I’ve heard that drug tests are pretty easy to pass now, too.
I agree that “after the wedding” is pretty arbitrary if you were together for 5+ years before that and didn’t seem to mind. I’m a stubborn asshole, so I feel like if my partner acted like he could have “more say” in my behavior post-wedding I’d probably rebel a bit. That’s probably just me (and maybe why I’m single? ha).
MMcG December 16, 2013, 1:53 pm
“so I feel like if my partner acted like he could have “more say” in my behavior post-wedding I’d probably rebel a bit.”
Not just you!!! It’s one thing to want or need things to change post wedding… for example if you never lived together and you have to figure out join expenses, but for behavior things like this I think you are asking for trouble by setting such a standard. NOW THAT WE ARE MARRIED THIS WILL CHANGE…
Addie Pray December 16, 2013, 10:16 am
Also, I just noticed this: “pot my problem”. Hee hee.
muchachaenlaventana December 16, 2013, 10:16 am
So I think you did try to figure this out pre-wedding, you obviously talked about it and I totally understand the hope that something such as habitual marijuana use will sort of phase out over time (and how compared to a more red flag behavior this wouldn’t necessarily be a reason to call off a wedding for some). Wendy has a great point, since you did let this slide for so long until you were married, and then still got married knowing he smoked and had agreed to just cut back (seemingly unwillingly), and I am assuming it has always bothered you, you are more or less between a rock and a hard place here. Because even though you talked about it going through with the wedding was still letting him know pot smoking is okay with you, and really how is 1-2 days any different than everyday? What you have been doing does thus far is not working so stop. The nagging is driving you crazy (as much as him) and every time he smokes again, I bet it just upsets you more because its starting to seem like a personal jab to you, vs just a habit. I know its hard to let it go, but do for like a week and see what happens. I think you have to remove the emotional part from the argument (I asked you to do this and you won’t, you don’t love me enough to give up this habit I hate, pot is more important to you than me) and re-frame it as more of a logistical/ lifestyle thing? I think that you should write out a list of the reasons you have a problem with him smoking every day and present it to your husband. Does it effect his behavior/motivation level/ attention to you/is it a coping mechanism he is relying way too heavily on/etc.? Do you drink wine or beer in the evening? Do you see pot as different just because it is illegal (valid but good to reiterate to him)? Why was it okay before the wedding but once the wedding happened off-limits? f you have always been bothered by it and sort of just let it slide, it really does make this more tricky. I am with someone who smokes on the reg, and I have sort of had to accept that he does it to unwind and if its not impeding his life, or effecting me, then why should I care? As I mentioned above I see it in the way a glass of wine or bourbon after work most days helps me relax. Since I don’t see weed smoking as that big of a deal I am sort of biased but I do think you need to take away the emotion and focus on the reasons this upsets you.
Also more important to me would be what happens if/when you have children? This is the one thing I won’t compromise on-and definitely something to be ironed out before that happens.
katie December 16, 2013, 10:26 am
so this reminded me of the “obsessed with football” conversations we have had, and how being obsessed with anything is kind of a turn off, and thats maybe a good way to frame this? like, i could never date anyone who was so obsessed with football- but really, so obsessed with anything. i couldnt date someone who smoked everyday, because that is just baseline annoying to me. smoke, sure, whatever, but when its an everyday, have to schedule around it, paying for it all the time, cant go a day without it kind of thing, that is a dealbreaker.
kerrycontrary December 16, 2013, 10:47 am
yes you framed it better than I did above. I just think being married to a pothead would be annoying.
Cassandra April 16, 2022, 2:55 am
Yes, being married to a pothead is indeed annoying. And I promise you all, they never change. Once you’re stuck with them you just have to endure their self-imposed stupidity. It’s also not worth discussing with them as they will always be high and in a lower-IQ state of mind, making forward progress impossible. And everything they agree to do is a lie, get procrastinated, excused away, etc. Potheads are kings and queens of avoidant behaviors.
jbk886 December 16, 2013, 10:37 am
What if you priced out how much he is spending on weed in a year? My cousin quit smoking cigarettes, and the amount of money she has saved over the past few years since quitting is incredible (we’re talking more than $20,000). Then, you can show him a few things that would be really fun to do but that are currently out of your price range (a fun trip, the car he’s always wanted, w/e). Show him how putting his money towards a special account that is specifically for that goal will make it possible much sooner. Then, open a separate account – PNC offers “reserve” as an option within it’s mobile wallet app – and put the amount he’s spending directly into that account for the goal. It is absolutely possible to be addicted to weed – psychologically, at least – so if this gets off to a rough start, he should look around for groups in the area that can provide support.
As for reasons why you might want him to quit, here are a few that may apply: cost, the fact that it means you don’t get to go out and do other things (again cost but also because he smells after he smokes), if you have kids and he smokes in the home you have to worry about 2nd hand highs, he acts stupid when he’s high and is therefore not as good of company. Again, I don’t know if any of these apply in your situation, but having grown up with an alcoholic parent, these are the things I noticed about how it affected my parents (minus #3).
sarolabelle December 16, 2013, 10:43 am
I said when I moved into our new house that it was going to remain clean at all times and not be messy. Yes, that lasted for a week.
MMcG December 16, 2013, 1:55 pm
rachel December 16, 2013, 10:43 am
LW, if you’re okay with smoking once or twice a week, but not every day, I wonder if a part of you is judging him for being “a pothead”, and you are kind of bothered more by the IDEA of being married to a pothead than by his actions while smoking. You don’t mention weed affecting your finances a bunch, or him being unproductive or anything because of it, so I’m wondering whether this is the real reason that you’re afraid to articulate. It’s tricky, because I know people who smoke every day, and you would never guess it by talking to them, and you wouldn’t guess it even if they had just smoked. But, clearly from the comments so far, a lot of people still have a negative view of people who smoke. So, I get that it could be a problem.
If I’m right and this is your reason, or, well I guess even if it’s not, I think you have to straight up tell him “It may not be logical, but this really bothers me” and maybe see if he would be interested in trying to figure out other ways to get what he gets from smoking. Honestly, I wish I still smoked. Since I quit smoking weed, I’ve had some problems with anxiety that I was probably unknowingly medicating. So maybe you can figure out a different way for him to de-stress. Take a 20 minute walk together each night, and avoid talking about anything work-related or otherwise stressful, something like that.
muchachaenlaventana December 16, 2013, 10:51 am
I agree with this so much.
iwannatalktosampson December 16, 2013, 11:28 am
Yeah the stigma is really annoying to me. Pothead is the same as alcoholic. Someone that likes to smoke is someone that likes to drink wine. But for some reason having a glass of wine everyday is just someone who likes wine but someone who smokes everyday is a pothead.
muchachaenlaventana December 16, 2013, 11:55 am
Yes the stigma surrounding it is absurd and contributes in large part to the reasons it is not legal throughout the country.
jbk886 December 16, 2013, 12:12 pm
The reason people are comparing his behavior to that of an alcoholic is because he is acting like one. There is a substantial difference between smoking occasionally with friends and being incapable of going a day without smoking over the course of an entire year. Using a substance every single day and getting irritable and argumentative when you aren’t able to use it at your normal time (which is what he is doing when he argues with her every single day) is a sign of dependence.
iwannatalktosampson December 16, 2013, 12:26 pm
So if you have a glass of wine everyday you’re an alcoholic?
jbk886 December 16, 2013, 12:56 pm
If you can’t NOT have a glass of wine every day, then yes, you are dependent.
From the CDC ( http://www.cdc.gov/alcohol/faqs.htm#drinkingProblem )
” Dependency on alcohol, also known as alcohol addiction and alcoholism, is a chronic disease. The signs and symptoms of alcohol dependence include—
A strong craving for alcohol.
Continued use despite repeated physical, psychological, or interpersonal problems.
The inability to limit drinking.”
(back to me): an everyday craving for alcohol is a strong one, no?
jbk886 December 16, 2013, 1:14 pm
…and just so that we’re clear, I’m not saying that you MUST be an alcoholic if you drink regularly. If you yourself drink a glass of wine every night, all you have to do to know whether you have a problem is to go a week without it. If it’s easy, then you know you don’t have a problem.
BreezyAM December 16, 2013, 6:59 pm
But there’s a HUGE difference between CHOOSING to go a week without, and being able to CHOOSE to do so, and simply not wanting to and being annoyed your partner is bugging you to do so. I wouldn’t be interested in altering a habit my spouse simply didn’t “like” unless he could come up with actual reasons. I’d be argumentative too. Not because I was incapable, but because I was annoyed he was trying to be controlling.
muchachaenlaventana December 16, 2013, 12:30 pm
I don’t really agree with this. I don’t think he is acting like an alcoholic. She never said he was “incapable” of going without smoking just that he hasn’t kept up to his end of the bargain which was smoking up to but not exceeding 2x a week. Maybe he smokes 3-4-5 times a week, maybe everyday, maybe only when he feels really stressed or whatever and it happens to be more than twice a week. It doesn’t seem from the letter he is annoyed at not being able to smoke at a certain time but instead the arguments that erupt and the nagging over it.
kare December 16, 2013, 10:47 pm
I have to say, I prefer the company of potheads to alcoholics. I have a friend that smokes about a brick every two weeks. For him, that’s $500 a month. He still lives at home, dropped out of college, and works unskilled jobs just to pay for weed and video games. I would never date someone like him, but he’s fun to be around when you want to chill.
Now my brother is an alcoholic. His behavior is unpredictable. Plus his tolerance is so high, you can rarely tell if he’s drunk. He has seriously injured himself while drunk, yells, etc. Sometimes. Sometimes he’s fun, makes jokes, etc. You never know which side of him you will encounter. I have not been anywhere alone with him in 5 years because I don’t feel safe around him.
I’ve never encountered anyone high who was violent or angry or otherwise made me feel for my safety.
MMcG December 16, 2013, 1:59 pm
YES! I agree with this so much, as well as the response by IWTTS (I just can’t give you a thumbs up bc the rating system won’t let me).
My sense is that this was a dealbreaker for the LW all along, but SHE compromised bc she didn’t want to lose the guy, assumed that “once we get married we will be like ____ ” (grown up, house, kids, no drugs bc only college stoners do drugs not REAL ADULTS) and now she is resentful. It would be entirely different if she was unaware of this and had no exposure, but that isn’t what happened here.
painted_lady December 16, 2013, 10:50 am
Ugh. TECH is right that it’s unhelpful to wonder why you married him at all…but it’s so hard not to say that in this case, at least for me. So I will say this: whatever is in the relationship right now, whoever he is and you are, you need to take a good hard look at whether you’re okay with everything being exactly the same. Look forward ten years and try and predict whether you can stay in this marriage if your husband “understands” the reasons you decided 1-2 times a week is okay and then gets amnesia when he wants to smoke. You should have done this before you got married, but since you didn’t: how will you feel about this conversation ten years from now?
I dated a serious pothead for awhile; he smoked at least once a day and would get really anxious and panicky if he wasn’t able to. And that is a dependency, no matter whether you believe the addiction is harmful or not. I didn’t think it was harmful, although it was annoying that he refused to acknowledge that’s what it was. I don’t have a problem with someone smoking an occasional bowl around me – yeah, the legality and the smell and all that do bother me, but the bottom line is, I don’t like being around stoned people on a regular basis. I just don’t, and for a lot of the same reasons I don’t like being around people who are really drunk very often. I don’t trust that I’m having a conversation with them and not the pot/alcohol. So it finally became clear with my ex that it would never change.
I would try one more time to explan to your husband why it bothers you and how much it does. Once. Preferably when he’s not desperate to get high. And then come up with a short sentence that re-states it clearly and briefly, and when he gets amnesia again, use it in a way that shuts down that particular conversation. “Whyyyyyy can’t I smoke every day?” “Because you love me enough that you want me to want to be around you.” And then don’t discuss it again. He obviously wants to logic you into letting him smoke whenever he wants, and it just stresses you both out, so quit having that fucking argument!
SasLinna December 16, 2013, 10:56 am
I can sort of empathize with this LW. Is this type of issue really all that rare in marriages? I think there are lots of marriages that have issues like this one. And I can see how it might have seemd llike making an agreement before getting married could be a solution. Not that I believe it’s working in this case, but it’s certainly rather easy to believe that a compromise is possible.
In terms of advice, I’d say try to let it go. If you don’t have an airtight reason for him to smoke less frequently, you’re probably not going to be successful. Plus, substance use is typically something that a person has to WANT to stop doing in order for any quitting efforts to work.
GatorGirl December 16, 2013, 11:01 am
I feel like everyone is glossing over the “We had extensive conversations about both of our expectations and wants relating to this subject before getting married”. It WAS dealt with before the wedding, and now he isn’t upholding his part of the agreement. You could substitute anything in- chores, sex, spending habits. IMO, it’s not so much about the weed but about not upholding a promise made to a partner.
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 11:05 am
I didn’t gloss over that. Did you see my comment about promising to quit cigarettes, and really meaning it and wanting to, but then not actually doing it. Just because you make a promise/compromise, doesn’t mean it makes it any easier to actually do it.
I think you need to disconnect his smoking with his false promise. I know that’s not easy because if you keep it connected, you automatically win the argument. But so what? So you win the argument. You are right. He promised and didn’t follow through. Where does that get you? Where does that get him? Nowhere but arguing. Its not like if you win the argument, he automatically never wants to smoke again.
GatorGirl December 16, 2013, 11:08 am
Haha, who says it’s me?
But you’re right, some people didn’t gloss over that part. But a lot did.
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 11:11 am
😉 Yea, a lot did.
Well, like I’ve said, I broke promises to quit and when I’m harassed about it, it makes me hate him. I get it. I broke the promise. I get it. You hate that I smoke. Well, you also started dating me as a smoker. You shouldn’t have only dated me expecting that a huge part of me is going to change. Idk. I feel for this LW’s husband. It sucks letting someone down, but it also sucks being harassed on a daily basis over something that has little to do with anyone but you. I’d reframe the argument and let the broken promise thing go. It won’t get you anywhere.
Fabelle December 16, 2013, 11:12 am
Yeah, LBH said it really well— I don’t think most are glossing over; it’s more like we’re providing reasons for why those conversations & agreements (no matter how on board the husband seemed at the time) were sort of doomed/unreasonable? ~Not~ that it’s an unreasonable request at all, just that you (collective 😉 ) need better tools for having this agreement actually work.
CattyGoLightly December 17, 2013, 9:45 pm
I just don’t get WHY he would promise something in stone though when he doesn’t even know if it’s possible. I had an ex who smoked cigarettes, and I said it wasn’t my favorite thing ever. He promised he would TRY to quit, and he did manage to decrease the amount he smoked from a pack a day to maybe 2 or 3 cigarettes a day. He also tried to avoid smoking around me, which helped a lot as well (he also wanted to quit smoking. It wasn’t just me wanting it). I mean, I also did not ask him to swear to me he would quit, and didn’t nag him about it. I just said it was something I wished he would cut back on, but understood it was something he had to choose for himself. Maybe LW needs to try that? Because what’s going on now isn’t working, so maybe it’s time to try something else. Stop arguing about it. Tell him that she wishes he would cut back, but that it is ultimately up to him. Give it a month or two and then see how it’s going. Because honestly, I can see why the LW is upset, but I could also see that maybe the husband is kind of feeling defensive/spiteful about it.
Also, cigarettes are incredibly addictive. I can see why that would be very hard to quit (when my brother quit he went through some really uncomfortable symptoms. It did not look easy). Weed, on the other hand, really isn’t so much. I don’t know the science behind it, but you don’t see people react to not smoking weed the way you see people react to not smoking cigarettes.
TECH December 16, 2013, 11:11 am
I see your point. But I think this is a classic case of “When people tell you who they are, listen to them.” As well as trying to change your partner into something he doesn’t want. I think when you get married, you have to be okay with who they are and what they do in the moment — not some promise made for the future. The best predictor of future behavior is past behavior. You have to make decisions based on a person’s present actions — not what they say they will do in the theoretical future.
katie December 16, 2013, 11:22 am
exactly. you dont marry promises, you marry people.
Addie Pray December 16, 2013, 11:25 am
and you marry people who make promises….. i think the issue is more that it seems to be an illusory promise. Wendy was wearing a lawyer hat with that good point!
katie December 16, 2013, 11:27 am
ok, define “illusory promise” in regular people words.
Addie Pray December 16, 2013, 11:31 am
this is not an illusory promise (which is a type of unenforceable contract), this just lacks consideration. …. i’m stupid and misspoke. why you people think i would think before i comment is beyond me.
but here’s a definition of illusory promise for you: http://legal-dictionary.thefreedictionary.com/Illusory+Promise
Addie Pray December 16, 2013, 11:28 am
Actually if we’re going to get technical it’s more of an issue of lack of consideration. I need to turn over my lawyer card, i have been acting so stupid lately!
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 11:30 am
If someone was annoying the crap out of me, I’d probably make a fake promise too. Like ‘if I say ok, will you shut up already?’
(how am I still in a relationship?)
iwannatalktosampson December 16, 2013, 11:50 am
I would too. The thought of being in a relationship where someone tries to tell me what to do gives me the skeeves. I’m an adult. I will do what I will do. And if it doesn’t hurt you (lets all agree that his smoking does not directly affect her) you should get no say in it.
(Disclosure to LBH – you should still quit smoking cigarettes.)
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 11:58 am
Honestly, with the cigarettes, I’m pretty much at the point where I’ll keep smoking just to spite you for thinking you can tell me what to do. Real mature. But, it is horribly annoying. You want to mention that I’m smoking more than usual, fine. I’d do the same if someone was drinking more than usual. Go ahead and point it out. Suggest thinking about it or quitting. Constant demands to live my life the way you want me to? shut up!
Christy December 16, 2013, 12:05 pm
omg, gf will do that – I’ll ask her to do something, and if I ask her right when she’s about to do it (but she feels like I’m nagging her) then she will wait another five minutes to basically punish me for asking her. It’s so frustrating, but I totally understand it.
muchachaenlaventana December 16, 2013, 1:44 pm
ugh this x100. I hate how some people in relationships think they can control what their partner does, like the simple act of being in a relationship takes away a person’s free will.
MMcG December 16, 2013, 2:06 pm
YES!! and it also takes away from the fact that as time passes, circumstances change, etc. etc. that sometimes the things we’ve committed to in the past can’t happen anymore. I mean I get wanting to hold someone to a promise (which I think was doomed and bs in the first place but I digress) but I also think it is unrealistic to think that things won’t change. That a grown adult won’t or isn’t entitled to change their minds.
I mean my husband and I can set up how we are going to get our kid to daycare, but 6 months in it might not be working for one or both of us. Or a promise about one person working while the other stays home… we don’t have the ability to ask “why are we doing this again? turns out I don’t like this… can we figure out something new” ?
I mean there are promises that married people make to each other FOREVA (i.e. fidelity = divorce) and then there are agreements that may or may not be subject to change as time passes and people grow and live with each other. Not everything can be written in blood and set in stone.
muchachaenlaventana December 16, 2013, 3:07 pm
yeah and if it is, the marriage is mostly likely going to be relatively short-lived or pretty unhappy, or both.
jlyfsh December 16, 2013, 11:11 am
Like lbh said below even if you do, where does that get you? You can’t MAKE anyone do anything. Whether it be clean more, have sex with you or quit smoking. So the only choice is to let the person know that you’re mad and that something needs to change and if it doesn’t you will have to make a change or accept it. That is really all you can do. You can’t make them want to make that change. The LW might be ‘right’ in this case that they made an agreement and he went back on it. But, at the same time it almost seems like he was forced in to making the decision. And I mean that’s on him as well as the LW. He should never have agreed to do that if he didn’t want to, but they both made the decisions they made and here they are. Honestly, it sound like they are not a good match in this case. So really I feel like the LW can accept it or let him know she’s gone if it doesn’t change. What else is there to do? You can’t force someone to try.
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 11:16 am
Or one of them is just going to have to accept things the way they are. I’m a total neatfreak and I would be so pissed when I’d clean to my standards only to have the house made messy by my boyfriend. I’d bother him to clean. We’d argue. And then I realized that just because I want things clean, doesn’t mean I’m right or that he must be just like me and clean all the time. If I want a clean house, its on me to clean it. I can complain all I want, but that will only give me a headache and an argument.
katie December 16, 2013, 11:12 am
well my question would be, why didnt he change before the wedding? i really dont get how the wedding was some magical event that changed his whole outlook and habit on this subject for him. and, if i was the LW, i would NEVER have married him until/unless he proved that he could do that. talk is cheap, unfortunately. and, i did say i think its shitty that he went back on what he said, and i do think its shitty, but that should have been dealt with before the wedding. if you dont want to marry a stoner, you dont marry a stoner.
Cassandra April 16, 2022, 3:23 am
Even if he “proves” for a time that he can quit and does, where’s the guarantee he won’t go back to it sometime later? That’s how my husband played it. People with addictive tendencies rarely stay away from their drugs of choice forever. These people are impulsive, they lack self-control and have strong urges that override their previous commitments. Scientifically proven, their brains are different than people who don’t have addiction issues. They are not going to give up a drug of choice unless something severe enough happens to them as a result of the addiction. Repeated convos about why they should quit have almost zero impact. Listen to the voice of experience.
Miss MJ December 16, 2013, 11:19 am
I think that’s because it sounds like the husband didn’t really agree with the LW; he just gave in to whatever she wanted to avoid the issue. He apparently does not really see any personal reason that he should stop smoking so much weed, other than that the LW doesn’t like it now, even though she was okay with it before they got married. Finances, illegality, being high every day – those weren’t problems or issues to him before he got married and they’re not his issues now, judging by his behavior. And, even with sex or finances or chores, if one person demands that someone do X and that person says “okay” to avoid a fight but doesn’t really see why they should do X, then you’d eventually end up with the same problem and have to renegotiate. So, I guess like LBH is saying, it doesn’t really matter what the LW’s husband agreed to do in the past, he doesn’t want to do it now and unless the LW has a better reason than “You agreed to do it,” I don’t see this issue going away because “You agreed to do it” doesn’t change the situation. He apparently changed his mind – or never really never agreed in the first place. The LW and her husband need to reach a real compromise here based on actual reasons and not the fact that the husband gave in to what the LW wanted earlier.
painted_lady December 16, 2013, 11:23 am
Well, yes. But the thing is, marriage isn’t a magic button. I mean, it is physically possible for someone to make a big change following a wedding. People do it. It happens. But I think expecting someone else to make a change like that – one that they’re not necessarily crazy about making but are making a sacrifice for their partner – and only enforcing it after the wedding is playing with fire. To me that’s sort of setting yourself up for failure and making a lifelong commitment to someone who may or may not have a quality that’s a deal breaker. I’ve told Walter I won’t marry him while he’s a bartender. I could say, “You need to no longer be a bartender by our first anniversary and marry him anyway,” and he could agree to that. If he doesn’t hold up his end of the bargain, it’s still shitty of him because he backed out of the agreement, but I’m still married to someone who isn’t who I want him to be. This is a serious conversation we continue to have in my relationship because he swears up and down he wants an adult job and still hasn’t gotten one. There are deadlines in place for all of that, that we’re both comfortable with, but since I know this is ultimately a deal breaker for me and it’s something I know about him before we’re married, I won’t marry him until then.
katie December 16, 2013, 11:26 am
“If he doesn’t hold up his end of the bargain, it’s still shitty of him because he backed out of the agreement, but I’m still married to someone who isn’t who I want him to be.”
this is the kicker right here, this is the whole issue, in my opinion.
kerrycontrary December 16, 2013, 11:30 am
See, to me, he can’t uphold that promise because he’s dependent upon the weed. So its like asking any other addict to “just stop”. And if you don’t believe in psychological addiction, we can all agree that its a hard habit to break. So I understand expecting someone to uphold a promise of like…after we’re married I’ll only go out twice a week with the guys and I’ll make sure we have a date night once a week, but I want to spend quality time with my friends right now. But when it comes to addiction? No, that’s not an easy promise to keep.
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 11:18 am
I wish “LW” would pipe in the specify what exactly bothers her about him smoking (without naming things that don’t affect her). Maybe that would help with suggestions?
painted_lady December 16, 2013, 11:31 am
She doesn’t like it. I don’t think it’s up to us to approve her reasons.
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 11:33 am
I think we all get that she doesn’t like it. That doesn’t solve her problem.
painted_lady December 16, 2013, 11:41 am
Right, but what I mean is, *why* she doesn’t like it isn’t the point and only muddles the problem, IMO. Any of the reasons I can think of don’t take away from the fact that she wants him to stop and it doesn’t offer any solutions, it would only be reasons for us to argue about why what she feels is wrong. Sorry if I sounded overly dismissive, but I don’t think she wrote in for a defense of pot use. I think she just wanted a better way to handle her husband’s behavior or manage her feelings of discomfort.
iwannatalktosampson December 16, 2013, 11:43 am
“she wanted a better way to handle her husband’s behavior” He’s a grown man. He can handle his own behavior. And if she doesn’t like it – and married him still – isn’t that her throwing up the white flag?
painted_lady December 16, 2013, 12:18 pm
“Manage her feelings around his behavior,” is what I should have said. I don’t mean like she’s bossing him around. I agree that you shouldn’t try to control other people, but I can’t help but be affected by stuff Walter does, and LW is the same, I’m sure. My ex’s pot smoking didn’t affect me directly, but he sure as shit was annoying when he was stoned. And he was stoned every day, and he didn’t want to cut down, so he was annoying and doing the thing that made him annoying wasn’t something he would compromise over. We shouldn’t have been together, and eventually it was one of the factors in our breakup. If you can’t manage your own feelings and the other person won’t stop doing the thing that makes you unable to cope, of course GTFO.
iwannatalktosampson December 16, 2013, 12:21 pm
But don’t you think he was annoying because he was just an annoying person? I know very few people (not in high school) who being high affects their behavior really at all, if anything it calms them down and makes them less annoying.
painted_lady December 16, 2013, 12:43 pm
Maybe, except I just don’t like being around people who are intoxicated for extended periods of time, and more often than I want (which I realize is a totally arbitrary amount, but when I hit my threshold level I am fucking DONE). I mean, yeah, he was annoying, but people who don’t annoy me sober can annoy me when they’re stoned or drunk. Maybe it’s me, but it’s a personal preference. And I don’t ask those people to quit smoking or drinking, I just avoid spending too much time in the presence of people who consume more than I enjoy or being in too many situations where that’s going to be happening.
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 11:53 am
But its possible answering those questions and thinking about her answers would help manage her feelings of discomfort. Like an eye opener or something.
Saying I don’t like X and not thinking about why I don’t like X, just deciding and never examining why is dumb imo. You learn nothing from it other than you are very stubborn.
painted_lady December 16, 2013, 12:10 pm
That makes sense. I guess where I was coming from is that trying to talk someone out of feeling some particular way gives me the creeps, but what you said makes sense. I feel like this might be something that could be solved in a couple of counseling sessions. I also get the impression it might not be a deal breaker for her, just a consistent annoyance in their marriage.
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 12:25 pm
Yes, exactly! Not a dealbreaker, just a consistent annoyance.
jlyfsh December 16, 2013, 11:34 am
And I think that’s why people are having a hard time responding. It’s fine to not like something, but then why marry it? Even if you did have a conversation. A conversation and a promise aren’t actual change, they’re just talk.
iwannatalktosampson December 16, 2013, 11:38 am
Uh yeah. I’m sorry you do need to have reasons if you’re going to alter my behavior. ffs. Talk about controlling. Flip the script on this and say a male LW wrote in and was like “I really want my wife to stop wearing such short skirts. I don’t have any reasons and I don’t have to!!” We’d all be like, um controlling much? Why do you care what she wears (why do you care how he destresses at the end of the day?) If she expresses herself through clothing and you don’t like it – why did you marry her?
GatorGirl December 16, 2013, 11:47 am
Well, in your example, if the wife had agreed to stop wearing short skirts post wedding and then didn’t…I would not think the guy was controlling to be upset about it. It doesn’t matter what the issue or reasons are, if a couple mutually agrees to do XYZ, and one person breaks the agreement, that’s not cool.
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 11:48 am
But people change their mind. If in a weird moment, I agreed to never wear a skirt again, but then decided I wanted to, I would absolutely think my husband was a controlling jerk.
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 11:49 am
I do think the skirt thing is different though, since there are ways smoking pot can affect your partner a little. Skirts don’t.
iwannatalktosampson December 16, 2013, 11:52 am
Oh God controlling guys could definitely find reasons why wearing short skirts affects them. People hit on you all the time and you’re giving guys the impression your single – only single girls wear skirts like that.
If you want to be controlling you will always find an argument to support it.
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 11:55 am
I need a shower. Gross!
jlyfsh December 16, 2013, 11:49 am
well yeah he can be upset about it, but what can he do? not much. be mad. talk to her ask her to change or accept it. like people have said the LW can’t force her husband to give up pot or to want to. if it’s bothering her this much then she needs to decide if it’s worth it to stay. because, it’s probably not going to change.
katie December 16, 2013, 11:52 am
ha, um, what about consent? you can at anytime decide you do or dont want to do something. that is the freedom we have, which i am very grateful for.
painted_lady December 16, 2013, 12:00 pm
Well, yeah, but then it’s your business to say, “Okay, you controlling fuckwad, I’m not marrying you.” And the husband could have said just that (not saying LW is necessarily controlling), because maybe he sees that condition as unrealistic. And you can decide whether your expectations are enough of a priority that you’re okay potentially spending your life alone, or you can decide you’re the problem and change your expectations. And people are perfectly at liberty to think you’re a douchenozzle and unreasonable…but generally speaking, you don’t date people that are those things.
iwannatalktosampson December 16, 2013, 12:09 pm
And she shouldn’t have married someone that liked to do something she didn’t approve of. That sword also cuts both ways. He shouldn’t have married someone that was such a nag about it. They shouldn’t have married. Since that has already happened she should let it go. (imo)
painted_lady December 16, 2013, 12:28 pm
Oh agreed. I spent the majority of the letter yelling in my head, “OH MY GOD WHY DID YOU MARRY HIM BEFORE YOU FIGURED OUT IF THIS WAS A REASONABLE REQUEST OF HIM?!?!?!” I think it was a really foolish decision if it was a deal breaker, so now the only thing to do is either change one – or both – of their expectations (maybe he smokes in the garage so she doesn’t have to smell it or I dunno what would be a reasonable compromise, or she figures out if she can get over it, or he sees how taxing it is for her…or if it’s a big enough deal, they split up. I don’t know what the right solution for her would be, but there’s really only a few options here, and nagging is so toxic for a relationship.
katie December 16, 2013, 11:35 am
well i think LBH meant details might help the situation so that the LW and the husband can talk it out better. i dont disagree, though, if she doesnt like it she doesnt like it…. but again, why did she marry him, then? if this is such an important issue for the LW, then these two are fundamentally mis-matched and the whole thing was doomed from the start…
kerrycontrary December 16, 2013, 11:46 am
Well int he LWs defense she did say it was a minor issue. They’ve just been fighting about this for the past 2 weeks so its not like its been plaguing their whole relationship/marriage. I think you can not like something about someone but still marry them and be happy. Everyone has their flaws or bad habits, its just whether you accept them or not. I just think the LW’s mistake here was marrying him with hope that he was going to change (he said he would but didn’t before the wedding date). You should marry someone for exactly who they are in that moment, flaws and all.
muchachaenlaventana December 16, 2013, 1:48 pm
yeah I think we have been sort of glossing over how she said it’s a minor thing, and it doesn’t seem to be overall effecting their happiness level. But the longer it goes on and he keeps “breaking the promise” and she keeps getting upset over that one thing, the bigger impact it will have on their relationship. It is good she is seeking advice now before it becomes a bigger issue.
CatsMeow December 16, 2013, 11:43 am
I don’t think LW needs to justify *to us* why she doesn’t like it. But I do think it would be helpful for her to explore her reasons for the dislike, other than “he broke the agreement.” And if she wants to reach a new agreement with her husband without it turning into an endless argument, she should probably articulate something other than, “I just don’t like it.”
MMcG December 16, 2013, 2:10 pm
But if she didn’t like it I don’t understand why it wasn’t quit or not… if you really don’t like something, I’m not sure having it happen around you twice a week is consistent or realistic.
muchachaenlaventana December 16, 2013, 11:36 am
yeah I think so too. I kind of want to say its more on par with what rachel mentioned earlier? this is the exact same reasons my brother’s fiance has any issue at all with his smoking. he has done it throughout their 8 years of dating but now they are getting married its like something is changing? I think its just the perception of marriage being this huge responsibility life-changing thing and smoking pot or being a pothead having this negative image and being seen as childish, trivial, losery (exemplified by a lot of people’s comments here on what “pot smokers” look/act/smell like). I think this does sort of alter the way advice would be given in this situation because she is okay with some level of smoking and was willing to compromise.
Iwannatalktosampson December 16, 2013, 11:21 am
I haven’t read all the comments but we can all agree this is GG right? Anyway I don’t get what the big deal is, but I live in Colorado. Two glasses of wine will make me a lot loopier than a bowl will anyday. You can control your high much better. If I was in a different career and it was more socially acceptable I would probably replace 80% of my drinking with smoking.
And yeah you can’ marry someone and expect them to change. It’s his way to destress, and I think he should be allowed that. What if he told you you couldn’t go to yoga or run (or insert other destressor here).
Honestly without having good solid reasons it does come off as very naggy and controlling, and honestly you’re probably ruining his high, haha.
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 11:23 am
WHOAAAA, is that ForeverYoung?
iwannatalktosampson December 16, 2013, 11:35 am
BAH. Make it go away.
Christy December 16, 2013, 8:25 pm
You know you can change your gravatar, right, so you could use the other email address with this sunset picture?
lemongrass December 16, 2013, 11:26 am
You need to decide if this is a deal breaker for you and if it is, break the deal. You should have figured that out before you got married but it’s too late now. You can’t force someone to quit smoking weed just like you can’t force someone to quit smoking cigarettes. You can only change your reaction to it and right now your reaction isn’t helping. So you can accept it as part of your husband’s flaws or walk away if you can’t live with it.
Annie December 16, 2013, 11:42 am
starpattern December 16, 2013, 11:44 am
So I’m sorry if this sounds harsh, but it’s how I feel about substance use:
Living in a state where it’s illegal – where a positive drug test would have detrimental effects on his career – is reason enough to be mad about it once you’re married (whether or not you share a bank account… that kind of shit has a big effect on your spouse). I mean, seriously. Putting aside whatever annoying stoner habits he might have, the smell, the cost – taking the risk with your career over something as minor as enjoying being stoned is so fucking childish and selfish I can’t even wrap my head around it.
Anyway. Sure, dealing with this before you were married would have been the way to go, but that ship has sailed, so you have to find a way to deal with it now. If I were in your shoes, I would probably give up the arguing because it’s just wasted energy right now, and then unilaterally lay down the law on a couple things: no weed in or on my/our property (house, car(s), etc.) and a solid contingency plan for if he ever did get that positive drug test. I would make him sit down with me and figure out how much savings we’d need to get us by if he got suddenly fired or even arrested and needed bailing out and/or a lawyer, what jobs he’d still be qualified for, what he would do to contribute to the household and how our lifestyle would change if I was stuck being the sole earner, etc.
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 11:47 am
Clearly the drug test/job thing doesn’t matter to the LW though, since she was ok with him smoking twice a week.
starpattern December 16, 2013, 11:55 am
You’re right, but personally I think that was a naive and silly compromise. It doesn’t sound like either of them have really thought this through. She would also benefit from sitting down to lay out a contingency plan.
However, if she is truly not worried about the career or money thing, any argument against any amount is pretty much toast.
MIss MJ December 16, 2013, 11:55 am
I agree that the job risk thing obviously wasn’t a deal breaker before marriage or after, since she was okay with a couple of times a week. That said, having a discussion about an actual contingency plan is a good idea. It’s one thing to think “I’ll never get caught” and another to think about what you would do if you did and you lost your job, had to deal with court costs, etc. and you should have a plan for at least paying for it, just in case. I’d also discuss what will happen after the LW and her husband have kids. I don’t mind weed at all, but drugs in the house with kids would be a huge no for me if I lived where it was illegal.
starpattern December 16, 2013, 11:58 am
Yes, that’s also a great point about kids – where I live, I believe getting caught with drugs or having a positive drug test can result in a CPS investigation if you have children.
Lyra December 16, 2013, 11:51 am
I find that a lot of LW’s start their letter with “we have a very happy and healthy relationship…but…” (I include myself in that — I was looking back on forum posts I wrote about my ex the other day: “I love him so much and we’re sooooo happy…but this one thing…”)
Here’s the thing though, you’re NOT happy. It may seem like a happy and healthy relationship, but this is the elephant in the room and and until you two come to terms with this issue, your relationship is not the most healthy. It would be the same if you were talking finances or alcohol or disagreeing on whether or not to have kids.
The thing is that he’s not going to change unless he wants to. Getting married wasn’t automatically going to change his pot smoking habits. You will obviously want to address this, as you should. Maybe he doesn’t realize how much this affects you. Obviously you aren’t comfortable with his habit so be open and honest with him. It sounds to me like you want to cut his habit entirely.
I also encourage you to look at yourself and be honest with yourself: are you happy in this relationship? I think sometimes we get comfortable and almost try to convince ourselves we’re happy when in reality we aren’t. Not saying that this is the case with you necessarily, but it definitely is worthwhile to think long and hard about your own happiness.
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 11:54 am
Don’t you think every single relationship has some issues? That doesn’t mean you can’t be in a happy, healthy relationship. None are going to be perfect.
katie December 16, 2013, 11:57 am
i think it just depends on how big of an issue this is. if its a huge issue, yea, its not good at all. for instance, i also really dislike video games, but i have learned to just get over it when jake plays them because its rare he plays them, he never chooses video games over other fun, real life, multi-people activities, i get that they are objectively fun to people, ect. that *could* be a big issue, but it isnt because we both dont have to deal with it in that way.
also, there is the happy/unhappy balance. is this bringing more unhappiness then happiness? then it is a huge issue, in my opinion. no relationship will be perfect, but the good should always outweigh the bad.
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 11:59 am
All good points.
Miss MJ December 16, 2013, 12:06 pm
Yeah, every relationship has issues. I honestly, don’t see this issue as the deal breaker some people think it is, but I do think it’s a good time for the LW and her husband to have a talk about about how they will deal with issues going forward. It’s useless for him to agree to avoid a confrontation or whatever and then not hold up his end of the bargain because he didn’t want to do it anyway and it’s useless for her to think that just because she insisted on something and he agreed that issue is done and over forever. If I were the LW, I’d use this issue to take a look at how the LW and her husband deal with issues that come up overall because “We’re very happy” and “He went back on our agreement” may mean that this isn’t necessarily an isolated incident. Maybe part of the conversation the LW and her husband have could be “If you didn’t want to cut back, why did you agree to do it because that’s not cool and we need to avoid that in the future.” and not just “You agreed to do it, so do it.”
katie December 16, 2013, 12:29 pm
yea, that part of it would bother me more then anything probably. not that he was still doing it, but the principle of saying one thing and doing another. not cool.
Lyra December 16, 2013, 12:50 pm
Yes, every relationship has issues, but it seems like this is a pretty big, glaring issue for the LW. I read it as if this may be a deal breaker for her. I wonder if she is trying to convince herself that she’s happier than she is. I mention it because I did that exact same thing a couple years ago. I would say “Oh we’re so happy!” when in reality there were a lot of things I wanted him to change.
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 12:55 pm
She called it a minor issue. I think you are projecting. Literally every couple has some issues, that doesn’t mean they are all tricking themselves into faking happiness when they should really be splitting up.
Diablo December 16, 2013, 11:58 am
Like many addictive substances, pot has a culture and a sense of identity around it. The guy may see himself as a pot smoker, the way a cigarette smoker does. If pot is OK some of the time, then why are some times OK and others not? If once a week is Ok, then twice a week is Ok, then three times is even better. In fact, let’s smoke right now!
The LW has not made clear what the deal is in the letter. Illegality is not her argument, or she would not consent to “some days.” It sounds like her permitting ANY smoking is just a compromise without a logical line to it. When is it a problem and why? It seems to be “all the time because i just don’t like it.” For example, I know when i should not smoke: when i will be working, when we are travelling, when we will be seeing family or other “straight” people in the next two hours, etc. The lines make sense: don’t mess up your life and relationships, don’t offend people, don’t take serious risks (like carrying on a plane). But she just doesn’t want him to smoke at all. So why would you marry him if this is who he is? why would you make the compromise that frustrates him and you equally? Why would you think he would be a different person just because he done married you?
The letter sounds like you are just angry because you couldn’t change your husband, LW. But he did not misrepresent himself to you, you just chose to believe you could remake him. I don’t even think you should make this an ultimatum, to see if you can force him to change. i think you just need to decide if this is a dealbreaker for you and then act accordingly. But if you are going to stay with him, please don’t nag him every day about this. You may want to see this as “he is making pot more important than me.” But he may well see it as “she is making quitting smoking more important than me.” That knife cuts both ways. Not accepting someone for who they are: the deadly relationship killer.
TECH December 16, 2013, 12:01 pm
I love everything about this, especially “That knife cuts both ways. Not accepting someone for who they are: the deadly relationship killer.” And “But he did not misrepresent himself to you, you just chose to believe you could remake him.”
camille905 December 16, 2013, 4:56 pm
iwannatalktosampson December 16, 2013, 12:04 pm
GREAT comment. It’s like you could smell the weed discussion 😉
Diablo December 16, 2013, 12:40 pm
MMcG December 16, 2013, 2:17 pm
My diablo IWTTS… MINE!
Such wise words. Love the clear lines that have been drawn and all the points made 😉
CatsMeow December 16, 2013, 12:08 pm
Diablo proves once again that he is a genius.
muchachaenlaventana December 16, 2013, 12:14 pm
yeah this is pretty spot-on, what I was trying to articulate but you did.
rawkmys0cks December 16, 2013, 12:16 pm
This is great advice and along the lines of what I was trying to say below! Very well put!
Christy December 16, 2013, 12:01 pm
Let’s assume this is GG, or someone who has similar feelings on marriage as GG. What that means is: divorce really isn’t an option here. So here’s my advice: If LWguy wants to cut back on his smoking, and he’s really trying here (and it sounds like he does want this), then you should work on having more compassion for him as he’s trying to cut back. As LBH mentioned with her smoking cigarettes, it’s really hard to cut back. And it’s hard to cut back smoking pot, too, even if it’s not physically addictive in the same way tobacco is. So I think you, LW, need to accept that he does WANT to cut back, but it’s hard to cut back.
And I think if reminding him is what you need to do to help him, then it’s what you should do. I mean, I have gf remind me to take my medicine EVERY NIGHT. She had me sign up for a text-message reminder service, and she still has to remind me. And I’m sure it’s annoying to her (how can I not remember to take my medicine?!) but she still does it because it’s important that I take my pills. (Just like it’s important to you and to your husband that he cut down on his smoking.)
Do you dislike having to remind him because it makes you feel like a nag? Why does reminding him bother you?
I think he would be going back on his word if he weren’t trying to cut back, but he is trying, and I think he just needs some help with it. And who better to help him than his wife, who asked him to do it in the first place?
TECH December 16, 2013, 12:06 pm
The only problem is that I don’t think the LW’s husband has completely committed to cutting back. In your example, you are committed to taking your medicine, and you are grateful to your gf for reminding you. I don’t think the husband will be grateful every day is the LW says, “Honey, don’t forget, you shouldn’t be smoking today.”
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 12:07 pm
One thing that didn’t bother me is when he would say ‘can you wait an hour and see if you still want one?’ For some reason, I’d take that way better than the usual nag.
Fabelle December 16, 2013, 12:10 pm
Yeah, I like your comment @Christy, but I agree with TECH that it ~doesn’t~ actually sound like he wants to be reminded? In the letter, it says he agrees that once or twice a week is a good frequency, but like, *I* agree that I should go to the gym more than twice a week? That doesn’t mean I’d like being reminded.
Christy December 16, 2013, 12:12 pm
LW says it right in the letter: “whenever he gets the urge to smoke, he would like me to reiterate why we made the agreement”
So he’s asking to be reminded, and LW doesn’t feel like constantly reminding him. I’m just taking it from the letter.
Fabelle December 16, 2013, 12:20 pm
Ahh okay, I think we’re just reading that line differently? To me, it doesn’t read like he wants to be reminded, per se—it’s more like he wants her to re-state why they even made the agreement in the first place (because he sees it as unreasonable, especially in the moment when he has the urge to smoke)
Husband (it’s so hard to not say GGuy 😉 ) – ::begins packing a bowl::
LW – You just smoked yesterday, didn’t you?
Husband – Yeah, so?
LW – I thought we agreed you wouldn’t smoke except for once or twice a week.
Husband – Right, I know, but like… why, again?
Miss MJ December 16, 2013, 12:21 pm
This is how I read it, too.
CatsMeow December 16, 2013, 12:22 pm
Sounds to me like he just wants to hear a real reason besides “This was our agreement!” or “I just don’t like it.” People talk pre-wedding about what their marriage is going to be like, but those agreements can and do change because people change and circumstances change. LW, try not to take it personally. The fact that he changed his mind about his smoking frequency does NOT mean that he loves you less or values weed more than he values your marriage.
katie December 16, 2013, 12:11 pm
yikes, i mean, if divorce isnt an option, why did you marry someone who did something you have a serious problem with? thats terrifying to me.
rawkmys0cks December 16, 2013, 12:07 pm
My fiance and I are daily pot smokers. Have been almost our entire relationship. So I want to offer my perspective.
If some of his pot smoking habits are affecting you, figure out what they are and make compromises over those issues instead of pot smoking as a whole. Clearly, the way you have been approaching it just isn’t working and your goal is probably for you to feel more comfortable, and to stop fighting over it.
So, for example, if spending money on smoking weed is a problem to you, figure out a budget for weed that you can both be comfortable with (this may have the added bonus of him cutting back, if he’s only allowed to buy a certain amount per week). My fiance and I have done this because we know we’re going to buy it, so we figure out how much we’re comfortable spending on it so that we don’t go overboard.
Another example would be if he is shirking household duties; we have a rule in place that all of our chores around the house have to be done before we smoke at all. For me, this is great because I turn into a bit of a couch potato. My fiance can still do the dishes (which is his job exclusively) while he’s high, so he can smoke beforehand to make the task more pleasant. But since I know that I can’t be productive while smoking, I have to do everything before I smoke. He takes care of thinky tasks before he smokes.
If it is affecting your quality time together, you should put in place a rule that he can’t smoke before date nights. Sometimes I really dislike being high in public, so I’ll say that we shouldn’t smoke before we go to dinner on such and such night because I want non-high quality time.
I think these tactics will have the effect of you being more comfortable and having his behavior impact you less, and he’ll feel like you are compromising, and allowing him to enjoy something he CLEARLY enjoys doing.
That’s my two cents! P.S. I’m a little surprised about some of the assumptions that people are making here about pot smokers. I guess I run in very liberal circles, so I thought the social stigma was almost non-existent, but I guess I live in a little bit of a bubble. There are absolutely varying degrees of highness, along with varying degrees of drunk/tipsyness. It’s not like if you take one hit then you’re out of commission for hours on end and can’t think straight. I’ll be high for an hour and a half, two hours tops, and can control the experience with the amount I smoke. One hit is very pleasant and I can go about my business without anyone noticing, I can even be productive, making phone calls, writing emails. That’s just one daily pot smoker’s experience, but I hope it helps give some perspective!
kerrycontrary December 16, 2013, 12:30 pm
I think this advice is really great and one of the only comments that gets the point of the LW wanting to find a way to deal/communicate about this disagreement with her husband. I think the LW’s main problem is that he “broke his promise” but she’ll have to move on from that and find a way to react to the situation differently.
Diablo December 16, 2013, 12:38 pm
See if you agree with this as a regular smoker. Cutting back daily intake is a lot easier to deal with than cutting out many specific days. When we have been too poor (or unable to hook up – ahhhh!), we have cut back drastically, but still smoke a little bit each day. Now that money isn’t an issue, we simply cut back when we want to. This summer, we were more active, and out with friends more, so we smoked less, not “to break this horrible affliction,” but so it wouldn’t interfere with our good times. Maybe her better goal would be decompression rather than abstention. But honestly, is money the issue? Because I tend to think he would just stop if he couldn’t afford it. This ain’t heroin folks. If you can’t have your toke, you just go “Awwww, mannnnn, what a bummer!” and get on with life.
rawkmys0cks December 16, 2013, 12:51 pm
I agree with that. It is super easy to just cut back, but not smoking at all kiiiiiind of sucks when you really want to. Whenever we don’t have enough money we also tend to stretch the weed further naturally…we smoke less, but still have our nice relaxing high evenings in bed (which are wonderful and sometimes the highlight of our day!)
I also agree that when we’re more social we smoke less because I feel like there’s a weird unspoken etiquette surrounding pot usage. Like, we won’t smoke if we’re going out unless we’re going out JUST us two, maybe to see a scary movie or something. Even so, we kind of learned that when we’re going out to dinner it’s a bad idea, because we’re weird around the waitress and its awkward, haha. Not only that, sometimes it stunts our conversation and it’s less energetic.
I feel like a lot of this discord may just be due to not having aligned ideas on when its appropriate or not to smoke. Everyone who smokes pot has to come to these conclusions, and maybe since the LW doesn’t smoke she doesn’t understand this. And since she’s his wife she has input on when it is or isn’t appropriate too!
CattyGoLightly December 17, 2013, 10:04 pm
Yes!! I think asking to not smoke during quality time helps tremendously! I agree about the public thing! You aren’t as sharp, aren’t as into conversation, etc.
So it’s like how your friends don’t always enjoy being around you as much when you (general you! Not YOU YOU) smoke because you aren’t as sharp… the LW probably doesn’t enjoy having that be her husband every single night. If she smoked too then whatever, but being the only sober one every night would get old.
SasLinna December 16, 2013, 4:23 pm
I liked this comment. My bf smokes pot almost daily, and I don’t smoke at all. I don’t even really notice when he’s high to be honest. Usually he smokes in the evenings, sometimes when I’m already sleeping. It’s not a big issue. My impression is that he smokes to reduce anxiety, and that that’s overall benefit in well-being.
rawkmys0cks December 16, 2013, 6:47 pm
Thanks! For me its about decompression and relaxation, maybe a bit of anxiety reduction (but that’s more of a “spot treatment” type thing, I’m not anxious all the time). I think if you incorporate it into your lifestyle in a smart and analytic way it can be very beneficial and unobtrusive. That is what I was really getting at with my comment.
Bittergaymark December 16, 2013, 12:11 pm
Oh please. If you don ‘t want to be married to somebody who smokes weed — don’t fucking marry somebody that smokes weed.
This letter is ONLY interesting to me as the peanut gallery is filled to the brim with judgemental harpy comments. A bunch of hypocrites judging away while blithly explaining away their own substance abuse — i.e. their own burgeoning alcoholism. “It’s just a glass of wine…” Oh really. Okay. Then you know what — sometimes it’s just a hit or two of weed… Probably to take the edge off an increasingly annoying and shrewish wife.
Moreover– all this crap about him choosing weed over her is bullshit. She is “choosing” to be a mother out of an absurd 1980s just say no ad campaign over just being his wife…
muchachaenlaventana December 16, 2013, 12:18 pm
yeah whenever someone is SO against weed, not saying this LW in particular but I always flash back to the ridiculous Reagan era “just say no” campaigns where weed was portrayed as worse than heroin. If people would do research into the history of the criminilization of marijuana it would probably open up their eyes to just how tied everything in our country/history is to race, and socio-economic standing.
rawkmys0cks December 16, 2013, 12:27 pm
Yes!!! Especially to the race/socio-economic stuff. This ties in to another point that I wanted to make…because honestly, if you are a white middle/upper middle class man, and you aren’t doing things like taking pot on a plane, getting drug tested at work, or walking around with it in public, then you aren’t going to get arrested for pot. You just aren’t.
In NYC and across the country the majority of pot related arrests are against black and latino people. I think in 2011 over 80% of pot arrests in NYC were black or latino men. This is horrible and part of the reason why our drug laws need to change.
MMcG December 16, 2013, 2:24 pm
not to mention that the even the AMA (or whatever they were called in the 1900s) went against the criminalization of pot back in the day, and let’s add agriculture to the vested interests that have been putting forth a lie… I mean we still can’t even grow hemp in this country ffs. Weed would already be legal and in pill form if there was a way for big pharma to make some $$ off it, which they can’t really, because it’s a weed that grows quite simply. But let’s keep that heroin, I mean painkillers, flowing!!!
MMcG December 16, 2013, 2:21 pm
Points for the just say no reference alone… Go Nancy, go Nancy 😉
TECH December 16, 2013, 12:17 pm
I just wanted to address all the comments people have made about how the LW’s husband is a grown man who should make his own decisions, and the LW is being controlling.
When you’re in a committed relationship with someone, and their behavior affects you adversely, you have a right to ask them to change their behavior. Is it naive to expect the other person to change? Maybe, depending on the person’s track record. But that doesn’t mean the LW isn’t allowed to pipe up when something bothers her.
People say the husband’s pot smoking has no impact on the LW. But I say — how can it not? A daily pot habit is expensive. There are also health concerns to worry about. And some people just act lazy and stupid when they smoke. But the bottom line is that is doesn’t matter what the LW’s reasons are. She is allowed to tell her husband when his behavior bothers her. And it’s also his preogrative to behave as he wishes, knowing full well it will upset her.
Bittergaymark December 16, 2013, 12:24 pm
Sorry, I don’t see how this IS affecting her adversely — other than transforming her into a whiney shrew…
GatorGirl December 16, 2013, 12:43 pm
Well, there is the cost, the smell, the partner being inebriated, the second hand smoke, having an illegal substance in the home…There are countless ways how this can affect the partner.
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 12:48 pm
Would the LW feel better if he only smoked outside and you both agreed on an amount he could spend each month? I feel like there are a ton of easily made compromises here that might make both people feel happy.
Bittergaymark December 16, 2013, 12:59 pm
The COST is a red herring as I bet if this couple’s finances were openly examined she would be found to have had some frivolous expenses of her own that would be equal if not exceed his weed budget. Starbucks, manicures, hairstyles, shoes… The money issue is most likely VERY trumped up.
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 1:00 pm
Sure, I totally agree. I just think that maybe this would be a reasonable compromise they might actually follow through on.
GatorGirl December 16, 2013, 1:29 pm
Mark, I love how you assume every woman excessively spends on such stereotypical female things such a shoes, hair cuts, and manicures. It’s pretty f-ing ridiculous the narrow box you paint ALL women in.
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 1:36 pm
haha. Putting aside what the specifics are, its true. So I deem a video game a waste of our $. Well, he can deem my special coffee a waste of money.
muchachaenlaventana December 16, 2013, 1:51 pm
Bittergaymark December 16, 2013, 2:04 pm
GG, you are so right. How wrong of me to think that a good many women have manicures when in every god damn strip mall there is a place called HOT NAILS or whatever… It has been fairly well documented that the average female’s grooming and wardrobe budgets typically do exceed that of the average male.
GatorGirl December 16, 2013, 2:11 pm
Very sound logic. Definitely.
Bittergaymark December 16, 2013, 2:51 pm
Fine. Prove me wrong. Add up ALL your personal expenses and purchases and then add up his. I bet even WITH the pot they are about equal or that he even spends a bit less…
HAHAHAHA December 17, 2013, 1:37 pm
I actually find this hilarious, since my gay male friends all spend thousands of dollars a year on grooming supplies/personal care (hair products, tanning, gym memberships, clothes), while I spent around $500 this year on everything including hair cuts, clothing upgrades (including shoes), and grooming supplies. I’ve never had a manicure and never intend to, but my gay male friends in LA frequently go to get mani-pedis for “girls nights,” which is really funny. And don’t get me started on their alcohol/weed budgets (I neither smoke nor drink alcohol or caffeine in any amount). So…yeah, no, bad argument coming from a gay guy, since gay males are the epitome of “spending too much on ridiculous products.”
muchachaenlaventana December 16, 2013, 1:12 pm
Yeah I agree. At this point they are in a bit of a stale-mate but I do think its one of the situations where the less its brought up the better it will be, so maybe sit down and have a final talk about ways to mitigate the fall out, compromise on it, and then put it to bed for awhile.
MissyC December 16, 2013, 12:52 pm
I don’t know, I gotta agree with BGM on this one. If the cost, smell, second hand smoke, … were issues I think LW would have brought those up maybe? I don’t know, maybe she was upset when she wrote the letter and could only think of the “agreement” as the reasoning why he shouldn’t be smoking.
Not to say that there aren’t ways that a person’s behavior can have some sort of effect on a partner, but just to say I think BGM has a valid point. It seems like her main argument is, “Well, you said you would stop smoking so much. It’s illegal, and you could totally lose your job if they find out, but … I’m fine if you smoke a couple times a week. Every day is a bit much though…”
rawkmys0cks December 16, 2013, 12:54 pm
Burning incense also goes a looooong way to hiding the smell. You can’t even smell it when we’re burning incense. Our roommate agrees!
There are a lot of ways you can mitigate these issues. It just takes some problem solving and creative thinking. Clearly the husband still wants to smoke regardless (and will at least twice a week, because their agreement in twice a week), so the LW and he should come up with ways he can still smoke, while making her more comfortable in the home.
Miss MJ December 16, 2013, 1:00 pm
A vaporizer might help, too. And, if the inebriation is a problem, what if the husband only smoked when the LW was enjoying a glass of wine or beer or something similar?
rawkmys0cks December 16, 2013, 1:01 pm
CattyGoLightly December 17, 2013, 10:09 pm
Ohhh that is a good idea! I would like this but the thumbs buttons are broken ;__;
jlyfsh December 16, 2013, 12:25 pm
I think your comment is the problem here though, specifically your last few sentences. I mean isn’t that what so many letters are whether they be about pot or something else. You can tell your partner what bothers you and what your preferences are, but you can’t make them change.
So can the LW pipe up, can she let him know she’s bothered by it. Of course, communication is always important. But, you can’t force that communication in to visible change. And I feel like that’s what the LW wants to know how to change their cycle of him smoking more than agreed, her nagging or him asking why they made the arrangement to begin with, etc. And there isn’t any way to force that change.
TECH December 16, 2013, 12:36 pm
I agree with you. You can’t force someone to change. All I’m saying is that the LW is allowed to be bothered about her husband’s pot smoking. Her distaste for it, and her talking to him about it, is completely okay. We’re allowed to tell our partners when we’re upset about something.
Although the LW did not go into detail about the problems pot smoking has brought about, I don’t have a hard time believing that it has. Just like any mind altering substances — it can have negative affects on people.
For the record, I am not advocating that the LW try to make her husband change. I’m just saying she’s not a controlling shrew for feeling the way she feels.
kerrycontrary December 16, 2013, 12:28 pm
WTS! I wish this whole thing hadn’t turned into a discussion of whether pot smoking is bad or not or how it affects other people, and everyone had been able to focus on how the LW and her husband can work out some form of communication over this.
iwannatalktosampson December 16, 2013, 12:30 pm
It sounds like they do communicate about it. And then communicate about it, and communicate about it, and follow that up with communication. Nightly. She just wants to force him to change. He knows she wants him to cut back to 1-2 days a week. He’s not doing that. What else is there to talk about? Her to come up with solutions for a brand new ninja way to jedi mind trick him into stopping?
TECH December 16, 2013, 12:38 pm
No, you’re right. At a certain point, what’s the expression “beating a dead horse” or whatever? She’s made her points. I guess she doesn’t have to keep making them. It’s either she comes to terms with his pot smoking, or he decides on his own to cut back. She can’t make him.
MissyC December 16, 2013, 12:54 pm
I wonder if maybe she was hoping for some new conversation topics? Because it seems like the main thing she keeps brining up is that they had a deal he would cut back, and he’s not keeping up his end of the bargain. So instead of bringing up the same thing, maybe what she really wants is some new ideas of how she can convince him to follow through?
Or “a brand new ninja way to jedi mind trick him into stopping.” Yeah. That’s probably it.
muchachaenlaventana December 16, 2013, 12:37 pm
typical tangent-wise no? I think in between these discussions on whether pot is “good or bad” there has been some really good advice offered, but this is such a subjective thing that people’s individual views on marijuana will effect how they respond regardless.
Diablo December 16, 2013, 12:44 pm
Love the word choice: “pipe up.”
theattack December 16, 2013, 12:28 pm
I really think most people here are discounting the fact that AGREED to cut back. To me it doesn’t matter what the LW’s reasons are for wanting him to cut back. There are plenty (reduced instances he could get caught, less money spent, hates the smell, the culture surrounding it, more time with him completely sober, etc). The point to me is that he said he would do it, and he didn’t. No, it’s not a great idea to marry someone who does something you hate, but that ship has sailed, and he was a part of that too. He married someone who wasn’t happy with everything he did, but he did it anyway with the promise of change. I don’t care if it’s hard to stop. He said he would, and it’s super shitty not to follow through with that. I don’t think I could trust his word anymore.
Btw, this is coming from someone who stopped cold turkey for a relationship. I smoked almost every day, sometimes multiple times a day, for about four years. When I started dating my husband, I quit cold turkey. It was very hard in the beginning, and sometimes it’s still hard now because I genuinely enjoyed it. But I knew that was his Price of Admission, and he was worth more to me than weed. It can be done if you care enough. I don’t want to say that the LW’s husband doesn’t care enough, but at the minimum he’s dragging his feet showing that he does.
LW, my advice to you is to have a come to jesus talk with your husband. Lay it out for him that you are realizing it might not have been smart to get married without having this issue resolved yet because it is incredibly important to you. Tell him that your Price of Admission is reduced smoking. (If the legality is the main problem for you, you could even add in that you would reconsider if it’s ever legalized.) Remind him that he gave you his word, and that he is your husband and you should be able to trust that word 100% through and through. He is supposed to be someone you can look to for a reflection of all things that are true, and he’s not holding that up. To me, this isn’t about the weed. It’s about honoring his promise to you. If he didn’t mean it, he shouldn’t have said it. If he wants to change his mind now, he needs to admit it and say it outright to your face rather than being wishy-washy. He needs to take a side one way or the other and stick to it, because if he’s not going to follow through with his word, you need a fair chance to adjust your expectations instead of wasting your life away hoping he’ll be true to his word one day. And if he doesn’t follow through, you know that you need to quietly decide to yourself if you would end your marriage over this.
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 12:35 pm
Do you want to be right (LW is “right” because he backed out on a promise), or do you want a happy marriage?
muchachaenlaventana December 16, 2013, 12:35 pm
but the attack you just said that was his price of admission. he told you you had to stop or else he was out, he was worth it to you so you stopped. if he had said that and you had been like um what abotu 2x a week and he’d agreed it would be different. this LW compromised to 2x a week, which yes her husband agreed to but this situation is to me a lot different than if she had stuck to her original “to not buy or smoke weed ever again.” If this was SO important to her, then she should have said this pre-wedding. Her husband straight up told her he wasn’t willing to do this and I can see how the arbitrary aspect of “only 2x a week” after awhile would kind of seem silly and is easier to go back on. Yes her husband should hold up his end of the “bargain” but he’s not so she can really either let it go, keep nagging and letting this eat away at her, or decide it is a deal breaker.
theattack December 16, 2013, 12:40 pm
What’s the difference in not at all and 2x a week? That doesn’t matter at all. The point is that he said he would do something, and he’s refusing to do it now. And they DID agree to this before the wedding!
katie December 16, 2013, 12:45 pm
i think that was the big problem. that makes the wedding a bad and negative thing, first off, a certain point in which he has to change something that in all honesty he didnt want to change. i do not understand why anyone would frame this as a “you can do it until x day, and then stop”. in your relationship, he said, “you cant do this ever, period”. that makes sense. that leaves no room for discussion, no wiggling, no keeping up the thing as you dread the day that is coming where you have to stop, its the line in the sand that is clear cut, spelled out, no interpretation needed. that makes sense, and it turns the issue from a power struggle to a price of admission. the LW doesnt have a price of admission, she has an opinion that she constantly has to remind him of, nag him about, and try to control him with.
maybe thats what you should do, LW, is figure out what your hard line in the sand is, and then tell him what that is and see how it plays out.
Diablo December 16, 2013, 1:05 pm
The difference is between an absolute and a slippery slope with no logical ground to it. Do you think that the LW would then be justified to seek annulment the first time he smoked 3 times in one week, even though she was fine with 2x per week up to then? If 2x is OK, why not 3? What if he only smoked 3x in a week one time, but then went back to never more than 2X after that? The flipside of the question is that if she agrees to compromise on 2x per week, is she then allowed to police the 2x? Is she allowed to say, “Hmm… it’s only Thursday, and this is your second smoke, so now, you KNOW the weekend is out right? until Sunday at midnight”? What is smoking 2x per week? Is it smoking one bowl per time, on two different occasions? Is it smoking a whole bunch for one whole evening? Does one toke inhaled and exhaled count? If he’s out with friends and they light a second joint, does he then have to politely excuse himself? What is “reduced smoking”? In his mind, maybe he already met the terms, because he now smokes a lot less than he used to.
theattack December 16, 2013, 1:11 pm
This doesn’t make sense to me. If he’s smoking every day, clearly that’s not two times a week, and he knows that. It doesn’t matter if the logic of twice a week instead of zero times makes sense to us or not. It matters that he said he would reduce to twice a week, and he hasn’t. If there’s any question about what that means, they had plenty of time to discuss that when he said he would do it. Either way, I don’t think clarification is what he needs because he’s openly admitting that he’s breaking the rule and that he just thinks the rule is stupid. It doesn’t sound like he accidentally smoked more than he said he would and they’re arguing about what the agreement was. He’s arguing that the agreement was dumb, which he should have argued before he agreed to it. If they need clarification about the rules though, they should discuss that. It’s not a hard arrangement to make.
Diablo December 16, 2013, 1:17 pm
Nowhere in the letter does it say he smokes everyday, just that he has not adhered strictly enough to her 2x per week rule.
muchachaenlaventana December 16, 2013, 1:17 pm
@diablo I keep wanting to respond to the same things as you, but then get there and you have put it much better than I ever could 🙂
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 12:38 pm
Also, I’m going to guess they’ve had the talk you are suggesting no less than 1,000 times already. Its not working.
theattack December 16, 2013, 12:42 pm
I’m sure they’ve had the talk that’s “Hey, aren’t you supposed to stop smoking?” I’m saying they should have a talk where she basically lays it out that he’s been an untrustworthy, shitty husband, and that he needs to let her know if he even plans on stopping being shitty, and that she should say she needs to know because she needs to figure out what she’s going to do (ie: leave or not). I’m not sure if they’ve had that talk.
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 12:45 pm
Assuming who the LW is, I think there is no dealbreaker here. She’s not going to leave or threaten to leave if he doesn’t quit. I just assume she has repeatedly said BUT YOU PROMISED and clearly that is getting her nowhere. Is she right? Yes. Does she win the argument simply bc he backed out on a promise? Yes. Does that fix anything? I don’t think so.
theattack December 16, 2013, 12:50 pm
Maybe not. So my advice is shitty. Whatever. There’s not a magical answer. I think she just needs to hear him say “No, I’m never going to stop smoking weed every day” so she can stop wondering if he ever will and move the fuck on. I think he just needs to admit it and stop living a lie, and it sounds like to me he’s still saying he’ll cut back in theory but then isn’t doing it and is complaining about the promise he made. He’s not actually admitting that he’s backed out, and if he admits it, at least they can stop talking about it if nothing else.
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 12:57 pm
That’s a good point. I didn’t mean to attack your advice or anything.
starpattern December 16, 2013, 1:10 pm
Yeah – I really do think he needs to just come out and admit that he has no intention of doing what he told her he would. He probably doesn’t WANT to say that because it would make him sound like a liar, but that’s the reality… and I agree that having that laid out plainly and directly will help LW stop clinging to the promise he made and put her focus on finding a way she can cope with it.
theattack December 16, 2013, 1:12 pm
Exactly! Thanks! Also, if I were the LW, I would want him to have to look me in the eye and tell me he was breaking his promise to me because he should feel shitty about that. But overall it would help her move on to whatever the next step is.
muchachaenlaventana December 16, 2013, 2:43 pm
Why would you want your significant other to “feel shitty” like that, just to prove a point? Maybe he is really struggling with this and feels guilty every single time she brings it up or he smokes, maybe it is harder for him to quit than just “okay we are married I’m done”. It seems like he is open to cutting back and has been trying, and regardless of his reasons for stalling on this he did not misrepresent himself in ANY way going into this. He told her he wasn’t going to give up smoking and agreed to cut back, which he is now struggling with (although for all we know is his mind he HAS cut back, maybe smokes less daily etc.)
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 5:02 pm
Very weird that anyone would want to make their loved one feel shitty or like they are being punished by a parent. Especially their spouse.
theattack December 16, 2013, 5:06 pm
You don’t ever want Peter to know that you’re mad at him because he fucked up? I don’t buy it. In fact, I know you’ve said similar things in the past. I wouldn’t want my husband to feel like a terrible person for it, but I would want him to feel bad about breaking a huge and important promise to me. If he didn’t at least feel bad about it – didn’t even care that he broke my trust and hurt me – I probably couldn’t forgive him. That’s very normal.
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 5:08 pm
I don’t ever want to act like Peter’s parent and I don’t ever want him to feel like I’m acting like his parent. I also wouldn’t even want to treat Lil like that, the whole “feel like shit so I feel like you know what you did wrong and how wrong it was.”
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 5:13 pm
I know how it feels to be in LW’s husband’s place and I know how much it sucks and doesn’t feel like I have a partner, but more like a parent. The way the LW is going about this will very, very likely not fix anything and just have resentment grow. I know that from experience. So I guess that’s why I’m on his “side.” But really more the side of let the false promise go and find a way for this to work with a compromise, not a reminder of him failing.
iwannatalktosampson December 16, 2013, 2:04 pm
What like admit he is lying and not planning on quitting and then go sit in time out? He probably doesn’t want to admit that because maybe in his head he IS trying to cut back, and therefore not failing. Or he’s not cutting back but at least he feels guilty about it which to him might be a step in the right direction. Or maybe since he gets yelled at every time he does it he considers it a wash… like alright I do it too much but you yell at me so we’re even. Who knows what he’s thinking. But to swat him on the nose and force him to say he lied – is ridiculous. He might not feel like he lied.
starpattern December 16, 2013, 3:12 pm
No, not like that at all. But – and maybe this is where I am having a huge disconnect with everyone else – I think he needs to admit the reality, regardless of what he is trying to do in his head. Admitting the reality of the situation, in my opinion, is not about making him feel bad and go in time out or admit that he is a failure as a husband or whatever else. It’s about having the way things ARE laid out in front of you so you can deal with them. Like, if she’s saying, you said you would smoke less but you aren’t – can we talk about this? And he’s just coming back like “But I’m tryyyyyiiinnnng, get off my back” – there’s no room for her to maneuver. No opportunity to examine whether there is an alternative solution. She just has to live with it or else be labeled unsympathetic because he is “trying.” If he said instead, “You’re right, 2x a week is not working for me. Is there a way I can go about smoking more frequently that will make you more comfortable?” that might lead to a more productive discussion.
jlyfsh December 16, 2013, 3:16 pm
Or they’ve had the second conversation, where he asks if she would be ok if he smoked more and she shuts down because it wasn’t what they agreed on? I mean that’s a possibility as well.
It seems from reading their stances on the issue that they are just TOO far apart in their beliefs. There will probably never be a middle ground that works because what they both want is just light years away from each other.
starpattern December 16, 2013, 3:22 pm
Yeah, I agree that’s a possibility. We’d need LW to clarify what specific communication they’ve had to be sure. My objective in responding here is to explain why I think it’s not unfair to expect your partner to admit it (that phrase sounds accusatory but I can’t think of a better one) when they can’t hold themselves to a promise they made.
Fabelle December 16, 2013, 3:25 pm
Yeah, I agree that it’d be helpful to know what kind of communication they’ve had already. What does the bickering involve? What does “shutting down in frustration” mean? What has LW’s argument been, & what has her husband’s argument been? Like, are they stuck in “you shouldn’t be doing that, we agreed only once or twice a week” or are other things being discussed?
jlyfsh December 16, 2013, 3:40 pm
yeah i think it’s not unreasonable, but at the same time i think we need to remember that them admitting that doesn’t change the outcome of this. he’s admitted to her he’s having issues adhering to this and they’ve been fighting about it. so, i mean it’s obvious things aren’t ok in regards to the agreement. sometimes we have to put away what we want (in this case the husband admitting that he can’t hold up his end of the agreement) in order to move forward. it sucks. but, i think that’s reality. although honestly i wouldn’t put up with this, but i wouldn’t have tried to change my partner this much either.
starpattern December 16, 2013, 4:15 pm
True, jlyfsh, you absolutely can’t make anyone behave the way you want, and sometimes it’s best for your sanity just to let it go. Still, it would drive me nuts!
theattack December 16, 2013, 3:19 pm
Thank you, starpattern! This is exactly what I was meaning.
Except I’ll admit, I would want that moment to be mad at my husband for not doing it, and I would want him to be very aware of it. Admitting you have a problem with your first solution to your problem is the first step in finding a solution to the first solution of your problem. haha
starpattern December 16, 2013, 3:29 pm
Hahah that last sentence made my head spin! In any case I hear you, TA, and right or wrong, I operate pretty much the same way.
muchachaenlaventana December 16, 2013, 3:31 pm
yeah I think this is really valid, he needs to be open about his reality not meeting up with her expectations and addressing how they can compromise on this or work it out going forward.
starpattern December 16, 2013, 3:36 pm
iwannatalktosampson December 16, 2013, 12:46 pm
Yeah she can definitely do that, but probably shouldn’t do that until she actually plans to follow through. Empty threats are gross.
theattack December 16, 2013, 12:50 pm
It’s not an empty threat to say that you need to think about what you’re going to do. It’s an empty threat to say with certainty that you’re leaving if he doesn’t do X and then don’t do it.
iwannatalktosampson December 16, 2013, 1:06 pm
Oh yeah I thought that’s what you meant though.
Diablo December 16, 2013, 1:14 pm
He’s been an “untrustworthy, shitty husband” because he interprets “cutting back” differently than she does?
theattack December 16, 2013, 1:23 pm
He’s been an untrustworthy, shitty husband because he’s breaking a promise. I already responded about the interpretation bit. That’s definitely a narrow assumption.
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 1:25 pm
I get that it sucks when someone breaks a promise, but to say he’s a shitty husband because he changed his mind on something is pretty extreme.
theattack December 16, 2013, 1:34 pm
Ehh, I would say it’s shitty. So would my husband. Maybe we operate on a different level than most, but we never say that we will do something for sure unless we plan on 100% doing it for sure. And this LW’s husband hasn’t said that he changed his mind. He even currently agrees that twice a week would be a good amount. He’s just not following through.
But to each their own. I could never be with someone who took promises that lightly. To me, if you promise me something, I should be able to risk my life on the bet that you will follow through on it, because that’s how serious someone’s word should be to their spouse. I get that it doesn’t always happen like that, but it’s shitty, especially when it’s something as easy as weed.
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 1:39 pm
In my mind, never, ever backing out on a promise means you are perfect when it comes to that aspect. I guess I just don’t expect anyone to be perfect when it comes to anything.
I also wouldn’t bet my life on something someone else said they would do when reality tells me its not an easy thing to do.
You are coming across as saying ‘my husband and I are perfect when it comes to promises. I’m also perfect when it comes to quitting something.’ So I guess that’s why I’m disagreeing with you on this letter. I don’t want or expect anyone, especially my partner, to be perfect. I expect them to have flaws and I expect us to work through it together.
theattack December 16, 2013, 1:45 pm
I’m definitely not saying I’m perfect or that we’re perfect. We all use ourselves as examples, so please don’t accuse me of that. I’m saying that it can be done because I know first hand. That’s not showing off, it’s saying that anyone can do it. But if you can’t keep a promise, don’t promise it. If you expect something to be hard, say that you’ll try instead of that you’ll do it for sure. That responsibility is on the person making empty promises, not the person who’s trusting and relying on them. It’s okay to slip up. It’s not okay to outright lie about your intentions. This is really pissing me off, so I just need to walk away from this conversation clearly.
BreezyAM December 16, 2013, 7:36 pm
I don’t think this means a lie. I said before our wedding I wanted to quit smoking cigarettes. My husband is a rabid anti-smoker. Why did he start dating me? He didn’t! We were just fucking! He’ll put up with cigarettes for sex! But then we fell in love and shit got real. And I loved him and I (thought I) reeeeallly wanted to quit. I knew it was gross and something that I needed to stop. I knew it was expensive and stupid and a pain in the ass. But as our wedding date loomed closer, I began picking fights and thinking I didn’t want to get married.
Finally I realized I didn’t want to quit smoking.
So I told him. We agreed it would be outside. I was luckily never a heavy smoker. Occasionally I would smoke inside and feel like an asshole when I got called on it. I quit on my own when I got pregnant.
But here’s the thing… I really, truly wanted to (want to) quit. I did. I made that promise with sincerity. I wasn’t lying. I just… couldn’t do it. I don’t think that makes me shitty. I’ve also promised I’d come home at X time and ran late and promised I would do X housework and got sidetracked. I had the absolutely best of intentions. To me a lie is a conscious choice. I’m not convinced this was and I think LW should consider this may not be a conscious choice. Yes, he should own that this must hurt her and he can’t quit. But she will find that compassion is a much more productive way to respond to marital issues than indignation.
Diablo December 16, 2013, 1:47 pm
Would you be taking such a high-handed moral stance if he agreed to cut back on potato chips but failed? “You ate those chips, so you are a shitty, untrustworthy person.” Losing weight is hard, but wouldn’t you be supportive? Or would you be “you gained a pound, so we are through.” Weed is an addiction and stopping a long-term habit is hard, not easy. You are wrong on this point. It can be done, it ain’t heroin, but it is hard.
Long-term marriage requires a shit ton of flexibility, re-adjustment, renegotiation, and letting little stuff go. Rigidity only works if you are truly prepared to walk, in which case, maybe don’t get married. You are young, idealistic, and married less than a year. Ask yourself again in 10 years. Then again in twenty.
theattack December 16, 2013, 1:52 pm
You know what? I’m not going to respond to remarks like that. I’m not taking a high-handed moral stance. Some people actually do try to follow through with what they say they’ll do. This couple has been married a year or so too so I would hope they also still value honesty. Either way, I’m not responding to you anymore if you want to personally attack me about it. It’s an opinion. Clearly we disagree. The LW needs to hear different voices though, and no, mine is not objectively wrong just because you disagree with it.
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 1:55 pm
I don’t think its a matter of honesty. If he promised to not smoke, and then lied and snuck around, I’d have a different opinion here. I think we just have to give him some slack. I’m sure when he promised to quit, he intended to, but that’s not how life works out all the time.
Diablo December 16, 2013, 2:02 pm
Calm yourself down. I’m not attacking you. I’m debating your points. Try not to take things so personally. You are objectively wrong on the point that it is easy to quit weed or any addiction. We disagree on the rest. But I think your attitude does reveal rigidity. I’ll take your refusal to respond as acquiescence to the rightness of my position. (Assuming I’m actually inflexible enough to believe I’m right about much of anything, as opposed to just having a discussion.)
Diablo December 16, 2013, 2:04 pm
Oh, and we actually “still value honesty,” too, and have been in the position of having to be honest about real errors, faults, and sins that will crop up in 25 years of being together. Sheesh!
theattack December 16, 2013, 2:13 pm
No, actually you implied that I’m too young and inexperienced to know anything about this, and I shouldn’t have gotten married if I want to function this way. That is a personal attack. I never said anything about being rigid and inflexible. I just think there’s a difference in reassessing the situation and coming up with different goals after realizing one of them didn’t work, and completely giving up because the agreement isn’t logical. It’s fine to reassess and make new rules together. It’s not fine to unilaterally say that you’re changing the rules because you think they suck now that you’re struggling. Admit that and make new rules if you need to. Don’t leave the other person hanging and pretend you’re going to do it but then never do it and just complain.
jbk886 December 16, 2013, 2:32 pm
I agree with TheAttack that the husband bears some responsibility to attend to his commitment to his spouse. Marriage is supposed to be based on trust and respect, and while everybody disappoints their spouse on those fronts some of the time, he shouldn’t be doing that multiple times a week. The LW wrote in asking for advice about how to better approach this problem, and beating each other over the head about whose substance of choice is okay and when does not help her.
Diablo December 16, 2013, 2:49 pm
Responding to your last: saying that your stance is high-handed is not a personal attack, but it is an attack on your argument. There is a difference. I’m not implying you are young: you are. I’m not implying you are too young to know ANYthing about this. I am, however, saying outright that you are too young to know EVERYthing about this. (I certainly don’t.) And I am implying without knowing for sure that the principle of “honesty” in your marriage has not YET been tested in the ways that it has in mine. And I am in no way saying that you should not have gotten married, but i am saying that rigidity is the enemy of happiness, and should be regarded with suspicion. I’m sorry that you feel you have been injured, but you need to ask yourself why you are being defensive here. As you said, we are just disagreeing. Have you ever known me to attack you before? Have you ever known me to take things to an inappropriately personal level? Then why are you mad?
You wanna know what’s a dangerous addiction? Dear Wendy. I was at home for lunch just now. All my weed was there, but i didn’t need to have any. But when i got back here, i just couldn’t WAIT to reply to your comment. It bothers me that you are angry with me. I should be working here. Addie, are you reading this? Because you should be billing. All of you, get busy, before someone notices!
iseeshiny December 16, 2013, 2:58 pm
I’d like to pipe in with some support for you, TA – I also think it’s really shitty to make promises and not keep them, especially when they try to minimize whether or not it’s a big deal that they’re not keeping promises. It comes down to integrity. If you can’t trust a promise your spouse has given you on something small, can you trust them when it’s something big? Maybe, but it sure makes it a lot harder. That’ll be true whether you’re married for six months or sixty years.
theattack December 16, 2013, 3:02 pm
Right. Neither of us know everything about it, so if you’re just bringing up the fact that I don’t, you’re just trying to discredit me when you don’t either. The reason I’m being defensive is because I’m stressed at work and sick of bullshit, and your digs at me were easy to stand up to when my boss isn’t. haha
People clearly function different ways. I’m flexible in my own life, but I also expect someone to give their 100% before they back out of something they said they would do. That’s a big deal to me, and it’s a big deal to my husband too. We both made it known to each other that keeping our word is of utmost importance to each of us. We’ve functioned that way together for ten years, and it’s worked so far. We don’t promise something we don’t 100% mean, and we don’t give up on it until we’ve given our 100% best effort. It might not work every single time in our lives, but I think it’s the best thing to try for. It’s not inflexible to expect that, IMO. The LW very well might have to re-evaluate this, but that’s what my original advice was for. She needs to find out for certain from him if he wants to change the goal (ie: if he’s given his 100%, and it’s not working out), if he’s giving up on trying entirely, or if he wants to keep trying on this one. She shouldn’t just throw her hands up and forget about it because twice a week isn’t as clear cut as zero times.
And yes, I still think it’s shitty if he’s wanting to give up on this goal if he hasn’t given his true 100% first.
theattack December 16, 2013, 3:03 pm
Thank you, iseeshiny! I was beginning to wonder how in the world anyone could get married without believing they could trust what their spouse said.
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 3:07 pm
ta, couldn’t you also say you can’t imagine someone getting married without realizing their spouse might fuck up sometimes and fail on keeping promises?
theattack December 16, 2013, 3:08 pm
No, I wouldn’t. Because that’s not what I’m saying at all.
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 3:12 pm
Wait, what? I don’t think I’m understanding this correctly. You don’t think partners should realize that their partner might fuck up sometimes and back out on promises they couldn’t end up keeping?
iseeshiny December 16, 2013, 3:21 pm
There’s a big difference between making a mistake, taking it seriously, and taking steps to make it better and make sure it’s not going to happen again, and “Eh, whatever, no one’s perfect.” It sounds to me like the husband is going route 2 on this one, and I think it’s really shitty of him.
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 3:25 pm
but it sounds like he IS trying to fix it. He agreed 2x a week is good. He promised to try and cut back to that amount. He claims to still be trying. Its proving harder than he thought and/or he’s realizing he shouldn’t have promised this.
His mistake was promising this. I didn’t mean his mistake was still smoking.
These comments are all really surprising to me and make me kinda sad. People fuck up all the time. Isn’t it your spouse who should try to lift you up and be understanding and want to work with you, not just tear you down for failing?
GatorGirl December 16, 2013, 3:49 pm
Sure, work with the partner and be understanding, but how long does that go on? Months, weeks? There comes a point where understanding is enabling, and just letting the other person not uphold their part of the bargain.
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 3:54 pm
I think for this to work out well, its not a matter of “understanding” and hoping for what you want for a certain period of time. I think its acknowledging that he made a promise he shouldn’t have and sit down and come to a whole new agreement…one that will end is a compromise you both have a better chance of keeping. From my experience, essentially demanding that someone stop doing anything all together will just not work out well. Coming to a new, realistic compromise will make both people a little happier and then no more arguing. And if that eventually results in zero weed smoking, great surprise, but I’d go into it not expecting that. I think there were some great suggestions on new agreements this couple can come to so hopefully they help.
ApresMoi December 16, 2013, 4:34 pm
I think you are reading this the wrong way. Making mistakes and messing up are not the issue. The issue is coming to an agreement and then blatantly disregarding your word, while giving your spouse the impression that you’re still on board with said agreement.
To use you as an example: If you promised Peter that you would cut back on your smoking to 1 pack per week, yet you continued to smoke 3 (I’m just using random numbers here) without giving any indication that you are TRYING , or really even intending to cut back at all because it is just too hard for you, then you shouldn’t have made that promise.
And then, even if you did promise something that you now realize you can’t keep, then the compassionate thing to do for your partner, who has faith in your word, is to tell him- “hey, one pack a week is not working for me for x,y,z reasons. I would like to start cutting down on my own to 2.5 packs, and then 2…” And if you see that is too hard to do on your own, then ask for support, and of course re-asses as necessary.
The point really is to commit to keeping your word, if you gave it, to best of your abilities. Compromises are not always easy, and people don’t just get a free pass because things are challenging. Think of all the things people commit to doing: being monogamous, cutting down spending, raising kids, etc. These are all things that you implicitly or openly agree to do, even if its difficult, and even if your are imperfect, it is something you still try really hard to be good at, so you give your best effort. Likewise, if you agreed to compromise on something that you KNOW its important to your partner, then you should be held accountable for your word.
The LW’s husband doesn’t seem to be trying if after one year he is still smoking every day.
theattack December 16, 2013, 4:36 pm
Yes, ApresMoi! You are so much more articulate than I am.
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 4:51 pm
The mistake I reference is making the promise to begin with, not that he is still smoking (that’s not a mistake, that’s just an action he’s taking). I think (and I’m projecting) that he hasn’t officially reneged on his promise because he really still wants to and wants to make her happy, but keeps failing.
Of course I agree he was wrong to break a promise, but at this point, its over and done with, LW realizes its not working and presumably doesn’t want to keep fighting, so be the bigger person LW, tell him you realize he shouldn’t have made a promise he can’t keep and take it from there with new compromises.
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 1:42 pm
Maybe you guys just make few promises? Like, I’m sure I’ve “promised” to stop at the store on the way home and then was all eh, I’m tired.
I’ve also promised to quit smoking eventually. Idk. Maybe I am a horrible, shitty, untrustworthy person. I don’t think so though.
theattack December 16, 2013, 1:49 pm
Yes, that’s what I’m saying. Only make promises on the things you really intend to do. Don’t make promises on things you’re not sure about. I don’t ever say with certainty that I’m doing X after work, because I know I could be tired or not feel like it. I say that I might do something, or that I’ll try to do something, MUCH more than I would ever say that I would do something for sure. Because that’s honest. Not saying you should do it differently than you are if it works for you, but this couple might not be on the same page about what promises mean to them.
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 1:58 pm
I think that’s why we are butting heads here. I guess if I only made promises I was 99.99% sure I could keep, then I would agree with you. I just think most people intend well, but shit happens.
But regardless, I think he wasn’t being sneaky, or even lying when he made the promise. I’d assume he meant to keep it, but maybe made the promise not realizing it’d be a hard one to keep.
Addie Pray December 16, 2013, 2:00 pm
i promised myself i would restart a diet this morning. i broke my promise. i’m breaking up with msyelf stat. if it had been one time, fine. but this is a promise i break every fucking monday.
MMcG December 16, 2013, 2:31 pm
I must be a shitty untrustworthy person too then, because I’ve made promises to people that it turned out I couldn’t keep. I mean WOW JUDGY WOW.
And how do we know he isn’t trying to be honest with her, and saying that he doesn’t want to cut back as much as originally promised, which is why it keeps coming back to why. Maybe LW just isn’t getting the message and the clear actions that are right in front of her!?!
theattack December 16, 2013, 2:34 pm
Holy fuck I did not call any of you shitty or untrustworthy, and I’m not judging you about it because this letter isn’t about you. Jesus Christ.
That might be true, and if it is, that’s all the more reason to ask him point-blank if he ever plans on following through, like I suggested.
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 2:36 pm
Well you sorta did say someone who breaks a promise is untrustworthy and shitty, so I’m not surprised people think you think that about anyone who breaks a promise.
theattack December 16, 2013, 2:46 pm
Well you certainly don’t get an award for doing it.
Either way, it’s up to the person whose trust is violated to judge, IMO. I’m not judging MMcG because she’s never made me a promise and broken it. I would definitely judge someone who did that to me, and I’m judging LW’s husband because she asked for advice about it. Like I said earlier, if what you’re doing is working, don’t worry about it.
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 2:48 pm
I agree he shouldn’t get an award or praise for breaking a promise, but I also don’t think he deserves to be called a shitty, untrustworthy husband who needs to look her in the eye and admit he sucks so, so much. He made a mistake.
MMcG December 16, 2013, 3:12 pm
I appreciate that ta, but it’s hard to read something along the lines of anyone who breaks promises is… without feeling judged.
Fundamentally, without knowing any additional information, I am not ready to call out this husband for being shitty. He could be an amazing husband, who has fulfilled everything else this LW has ever wanted (hence is happy and this is a minor thing according to her) and is just having probs in this area… probably because he shouldn’t have made promises he couldn’t/wouldn’t keep… but at the same time I believe the LW was a little delusional in some of her thinking as well.
it’s like the LW’s marriage has devolved into a child-parent thing where she just wants to yell “because I said so and you said you would [reluctantly] go along with it” and that is a slow boat to nowhere. I have also already been in experiences in my own marriage where if I held as sharp of a line as you I would be miserable and probably on the way to divorce. Good people make bad decisions all the time, and I think if this is someone you love and have pledged to spend you life with, then you need to find some room for generosity and the benefit of the doubt that people make mistakes.
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 3:13 pm
oh I love that mmcg!
theattack December 16, 2013, 3:29 pm
Well that’s fine, MMcG. We disagree on it. I’m sure you would judge some of the things I do in my life. I think it’s terrible to break promises, and I stand by that.
I agree with you that he’s not a shitty person through and through for it. I just think that, in this part of his marriage, he’s being a shitty husband. If he made a habit of not following through with his word, I would say he was a shitty husband completely. I think he’s being a shitty husband now, but not that he necessarily is a shitty husband in general. Does that make sense? (So many curse words in this paragraph)
The benefit of the doubt is definitely good, as is generosity. I just think they should establish that this is a goal that he’s not reaching, and yes, she should forgive him for that, but that doesn’t make it anymore okay. She should make it known how disappointed and heartbroken she is over it, and he should learn to be more careful in what he promises her. I do hope they can grow from it and move on.
MMcG December 16, 2013, 4:44 pm
@lbh… you and I should go out for a smoke together sometime, we would obviously get along so well 😉
@ta… I get what you are saying, I’m just not understanding what happens next. If you don’t believe in divorce, should you just ruminate in disappointment and heartbreak forever? When you and your SO can’t come to an understanding or compromise… at what point do you call it a day and get to acceptance (after going through denial, anger, bargaining, depression of course) when you aren’t prepared to end the marriage.
theattack December 16, 2013, 4:50 pm
You don’t just call it a day and forget about it. You establish if you’ve done all you can and if it’s time to give up on that specific goal, and then you set a new, more attainable goal together. You also take it very seriously that your end of the bargain fell through and don’t let it happen again if you can keep from it at all. I never suggested that she wallow in it forever. I’m saying she has a right to be very angry because he broke her trust. It doesn’t end there.
GatorGirl December 16, 2013, 2:36 pm
Um, the point is to own up to a promise you can’t keep. By not owning up to it, and just saying you’ll keep the promise with no intention to even try to actually follow through with the promise…that makes a person a shitty person. If you can’t uphold a promise, own up to it and tell the person you made the promise too.
Good grief lay off people.
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 2:39 pm
Would you prefer he just say he never should’ve promised that and him toke every night going forward, or would you prefer that he continue trying to live up to the promise? Because if all “you” want is him to admit he failed at keeping the promise, which it sorta sounds like, then just tell him to say that and call it a day.
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 2:44 pm
So if this turns out to be what the LW wants, then I think it goes back to just wanting to prove you are right and he is wrong and you are better and he is shitty…rather than just realize he probably meant well, failed and now needs some understanding or support from his spouse. I’m looking forward to an update to see if anything has changed/improved!
GatorGirl December 16, 2013, 2:51 pm
In a lot of situations there is no clear right and wrong.
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 2:46 pm
Also (and sorry for the 800 comments haha) maybe it will help you feel better if you realize he didn’t promise this with the idea of being like “hahahaha fuck my wife, she’s actually believing this, i’ve successfully tricked her!”
starpattern December 16, 2013, 3:01 pm
No, I don’t think that’s what anyone’s trying to say. Obviously the agreement was made after a lot of discussion, and LW’s husband knew she was serious about it and it is important to her. If he can’t or won’t hold to it, he needs to admit it is not working for him, and open the discussion again to try to find some compromise that makes both of them comfortable. I think not being able to live up to a promise you made to your spouse (that you know is important to them) is understandable – nobody can keep the status quo forever – but it should still be treated with some gravity, right?
MMcG December 16, 2013, 3:15 pm
and I guess I am reading between the lines here that the husband has tried to restart the conversation and has just been shut down by the LW with “but we had an agreement!” … which is why I think Wendy’s advice is so good, for the LW to really look into why and expand the next conversation beyond that line of reasoning.
starpattern December 16, 2013, 4:19 pm
Yeah, I was kind of reading between the lines the other way (LW trying to bring up the fact that he’s smoking more than they agreed and him just being like “WHY are you still talking about this?”). Maybe LW will show up and clarify which way those conversations are going.
jlyfsh December 16, 2013, 12:45 pm
Honestly I think she has the answer to your advice and she doesn’t like it. He’s probably not going to change. And she can’t make him. It sucks. But, that’s reality. You can either accept it or move on. Staying and continuing to argue will not make him change. Unfortunately that sometimes happens in relationships. We think we can compromise on things and end up finding that compromise on some things doesn’t work. Especially when the compromise is between two ideas that are so far apart.
Honestly, I think this was a way bigger issue in the relationship than either one of them realized pre-marriage. And that sucks too, but you can’t make the other person put in effort.
A La Mode December 16, 2013, 12:38 pm
HmC December 16, 2013, 12:51 pm
I’m in the camp that sees occasional weed smoking as no big deal in and of itself, as long as you’re not doing it to escape big problems and it isn’t negatively impacting other areas of your life. I do think the war on drugs is ridiculous at best and wildly hypocritical considering what a bunch of teetotalers we are. But I also think that a marriage between one person who wants to smoke daily and one who NEVER wants him to smoke is unrealistic. To “compromise” at a couple days a week seems more like a lose lose situation than a compromise, to me. Anyway as far as constructive advice for the LW, I say listen to Wendy. But for people who are looking for a partner, if you’re on the far side of the spectrum with drug/alcohol use, so either never or frequent, I say look for someone whose habits naturally are close to yours.
Addie Pray December 16, 2013, 12:57 pm
Also does pot come in flavors? Like hazelnut pot? French vanilla pot? I’d be all over sour cream and onion pot.
Addie Pray December 16, 2013, 12:59 pm
oh oh oh cheddar and sour cream pot!
katie December 16, 2013, 1:01 pm
pot can be made into any baked good. that is flavor enough for me! haha
katie December 16, 2013, 1:24 pm
oh god, AP, i got it- if the drug part of weed is able to be heated, someone needs to make potato chips (hello, sour cream and onion and/or cheddar and sour cream!) that are FRIED IN POT FAT.
million dollar idea right there.
muchachaenlaventana December 16, 2013, 1:28 pm
once its officially legalized I can see some major potato chip conglomerates jumping onto this bandwagon.
katie December 16, 2013, 1:30 pm
shit, i need to get on patenting the fried pot-oil. ill rule the world with my piles of money…
CatsMeow December 16, 2013, 3:31 pm
I think it’s already a thing: http://cannabiskitchen.org/64/cooking/quick-marijuana-oil/
mandalee December 16, 2013, 1:52 pm
Yes, it can come in flavors. I’ve seen strawberry and blueberry but never anything delicious like onion. The flavor is added during the growth stages.
/goes back to my former pothead corner lol
A La Mode December 16, 2013, 1:59 pm
Eh, they come in “flavors” but it’s really just a way to describe the flavor of the strain much like how wine critics wax poetic about how wines have “aromas” and whatnot.
It’s pretty much impossible to make pot edibles without a very discernible marijuana-y flavor to it. You can make chocolates and cakes that hide the flavor very well, but there’s an aftertaste. You can infuse THC into fats, juices, etc but all to various effects – but it only gives you a body high (painkiller effect), not a head high or stoned effect (well, I get sinus pressure from them, so I guess thats something), so it may not be worth a recreational user’s while. Hopefully better technology and cooking techniques will emerge with marijuana use becoming more mainstream and commercialized… Right now, a lot of the edibles being sold in dispensaries are utter shit.
rachel December 16, 2013, 2:03 pm
The high from edibles is definitely different than smoking, but I wouldn’t say there is no “head high or stoned effect”. Everyone reacts differently I guess.
A La Mode December 16, 2013, 2:09 pm
I forget that I’m speaking as someone who considers CBN and CBD levels when choosing what I buy, and I’ve had a green card for years. Less frequent/lighter users will most likely have a head high from edibles.
Diablo December 16, 2013, 3:34 pm
Pot does come in flavours. Blueberry, pineapple, sweet tea, snowflake, skunk, etc. Really, most of them are pretty much the same, with varying degrees of funkaliciousness. However, its role is really as more of a flavour enhancer. PJ O’Rourke says that pot is a condiment, because its natural function is to make all foods taste delicious. He also mentions that for this reason it should not be used by men whose age or waist size exceeds 36, so obviously he doesn’t know everything.
mandalee December 16, 2013, 1:59 pm
Okay, I’m not going to touch on the is “smoking weed a bad thing” because that’s not really the issue here. Your husband is engaging in a behavior that you don’t agree with it, you maybe foolishly thought things would change after the wedding, they haven’t, he brought his agreement and now you are in a tunnel of fighting and resentment. Okay. I think the communication issue you are having is much more important than what the issue you are arguing about is. It could be anything really, but a stalemate is a stalemate.
I think Wendy had great insight in figuring out why this is bothering you and what agreeing to 1-2 per week is really going to accomplish. What specifically about what is going on is the issue:, is he slacking with the household chores or stuff like that when he’s smoking? Does he act different? Is it costing too much money? You need to clarify your feelings and then have a conversation.
As a personal example, I wrote into Wendy last year when my husband’s college friends used us for a free place to stay and that resulted in a lot of drinking/smoking/excess spending that really pissed me off. When I generally whined “I hate your friends” “you’re spending too much money”, nothing changed. When I thought about what I was really upset about, which was the wasteful spending taking away from our goals of buying a house and the prioritizing drinking/partying with his disrespectful friends, I was able to communicate it much more better and we were finally able to get somewhere and solve the problems. In my case, the money spending and the disrespectful friends and the immaturity they brought out in him were the problem, the drinking/excess smoking were the symptom. So that’s what you need to find. What’s really the problem? Why is this an issue now? Was it before? Has something changed? What is smoking weed have to do with the bigger picture pretty much,
MMcG December 16, 2013, 2:37 pm
Great comment about getting to the root of the issue, which I think will serve the LW well. One can’t stand on teetotalling pole and then say twice a week is ok… totally inconsistent thinking/reasoning which is why, along with other issues, I think this agreement was doomed to fail in the first place.
MMcG December 16, 2013, 2:39 pm
We are going to hit 300 DWers!! Nothing like a good pot letter, or weddings/ILs, to get the party started this week 🙂
bcamber December 16, 2013, 3:27 pm
I agree with Wendy – what is he getting in return for quitting and/or reducing his usage? Is there some annoying habit of yours that you’ve agreed to curb in exchange? Because it’s clearly not that much of a dealbreaker for you because he’s been doing it for years. If it was truly your “price of admission” then maybe you should have notified him of that when you started dating.
You know what I find a bit shitty – not telling some one that this is a dealbreaker, and then making it into one years later. Like what, did you think one he was in love with you and attached to you he’d then be willing to change?
Regarding him being a “shitty husband” – I think it’s wrong to characterize someone based on one (even continuing) action. People can do shitty things without being a shitty person in general.
I don’t see pot as any different than alcohol, so I don’t really see what the big deal is here – I’m going to assume it doesn’t really affect your relationship other than you don’t like it, because if it did, you would have mentioned it. If I were you LW I would just drop it.
And the money issue – I assume the LW buys things of her own that she likes? So until she starts limiting her expenditures to solely practical household items, then I don’t see where she has a leg to stand on with that argument. And I dunno about everyone else, but in my relationship as long as the household expenses are paid and money is put into savings, we are free to spend the rest of our money on whatever we want.
AliceInDairyland December 16, 2013, 3:39 pm
Woah. So many things. First, I would totally be interested in pot if it weren’t illegal, AND if I had these mystery “friends” or “friends of friends” who could help me. I’m with AP, I’m a well-behaved white girl who has zero exposure. But I always thought that it would be nice to try and integrate into dealing with my anxiety. Anyways.
If I were the LW, I would have a conversation that goes like this, (some random time, not when he is about to smoke)
“LWguy, I want to re-talk about the pot smoking thing. What is your long term goal on this? Do you want to stop smoking? Do you want to cut back? Are you perfectly happy doing what you are doing now? Have you weighed the risks and the benefits? ……. *LWguy talks, lets assume he wants to cut back but can’t*
Okay, LWguy, lets figure out a way to make that possible as a team. Can we budget it out where you only spend $X.YQ a month and therefore are limited that way? Would you want me to keep it somewhere and “dole it out” at a reasonable rate so that you stick to your goals? How about we schedule it, like we schedule other things? Lets use these tools together to come up with something. And then, if there is ever a point that we both agree you should stop completely (say when we have little ones running about) we will have the practice under our belts to phase it out effectively. But this is only if you truly want to do this, and I don’t want you to just agree to agree.”
I think that sounds good. Listen to ME LW!!
rachel December 16, 2013, 3:50 pm
Yeah, I think this imaginary conversation is a good way to approach it.
starpattern December 16, 2013, 4:21 pm
LW should totally listen to you. Great comment.
AliceInDairyland December 16, 2013, 6:29 pm
Aww thanks guys. That was in the middle of my brain-fried-due-to-oncology-final thought processes so I’m pretty glad it’s coherent. 🙂
katie December 16, 2013, 4:23 pm
so what has bugged me the whole time about this is how the wedding was used as the day when the pot smoking stopped. is this significant? did you think if you drew a hard line in the sand he would leave you? do you have some image of “married people” that doesnt include pot? what changed for you, psychologically, when you married? what switch was it that made you think he would also change? did you think that after marriage, you would move up a ladder, so to speak, above pot?
i just feel like this must be significant. why be together for 5 freaking years and pick the wedding as the time when something that you apparently hate and always have stops? maybe some delving into those motivations will help as well.
also, i feel bad that the husband in all likelihood dreaded his wedding…
theattack December 16, 2013, 4:28 pm
Dreaded his wedding? Really? I think that’s unlikely…
rachel December 16, 2013, 4:36 pm
Ha, I doubt he dreaded his wedding. Even he thinks 2x a week is a reasonable amount. It sounds like he’s having a harder time cutting back than he thought he would, so at the time he probably thought it wouldn’t be a big deal to cut down.
I agree about the arbitrary line though. When I started grad school, I decided I was going to stop smoking, because, I dunno, it was time to be more serious or whatever. And that didn’t hold, because I had friends who smoked, and there weren’t consequences. It wasn’t until now, after I’ve actually dealt with consequences, that I don’t have trouble abstaining. So, it sounds like for the LW, the wedding as a line makes sense, but maybe it’s just not as motivating to him as he thought it would be.
katie December 16, 2013, 4:41 pm
i dunno, if my wedding day was the day when i had to stop/cut down on doing something i liked for no other reason then my girlfriend of 5 years didnt like it, i would absolutely partially dread my wedding.
theattack December 16, 2013, 4:44 pm
I think if the overwhelming joy of committing to forever with your life partner doesn’t excite you more than you’re sad about the smoking, you’re marrying the wrong person.
katie December 16, 2013, 4:51 pm
exactly my point! if this is his “thing”, if smoking is such a part of him, i think he did marry the wrong person!!
theattack December 16, 2013, 4:53 pm
That might be the case. Or maybe he married the right person and is just dragging his feet kicking a habit. I don’t think it’s quite so all or nothing.
katie December 16, 2013, 5:07 pm
oh no, i dont either- but if it was me, i would totally have had some sort of dread of the wedding day coming up and sadness on the day. like i wonder if he was high as shit for the last few weekends before just because he knew he had to cut down afterwards? thats horrible! lol
also, that is just not my idea of a wedding/marriage at ALL. i dont want anything to change after it. to me, you put all the work into the front end in deciding if you want to get married, and then afterwards its maintaining. the whole “after the wedding x is changing” is not my view of marriage and its scary to me, haha
Fabelle December 16, 2013, 4:47 pm
I agree that “post-wedding/marriage” is an arbitrary timeline (as per my first comment this morning), but I doubt that it was SUCH a rigid line, like “immediately after the wedding, your weed habit must be reduced”. It was probably more like a, “alright, when we’re married, I/you won’t smoke so much” kind of thing?
I mean, there are probably some “married people don’t do this” thoughts at play here like you’re saying, & I think those would be interesting to explore, but I also doubt he was saying vows like, “& oh man, now I’ll have to quit toking.”
lets_be_honest December 16, 2013, 4:58 pm
Your second paragraph is all that is wrong with marriage, imo. Well, not all, but whatever. Aren’t you supposed to still be exactly who you are, but just married? Not redefine who you are simply because you committed yourself to someone? Shouldn’t you NOT want your brand new spouse to change a part of him immediately upon marriage?
iwannatalktosampson December 16, 2013, 4:48 pm
This entire thread makes me want to light up.
camille905 December 16, 2013, 5:12 pm
rawkmys0cks December 16, 2013, 6:41 pm
I can’t wait to get my chores done so I can toke up tonight 😛 see? Great motivation to clean my apartment! Whatwhat!
AKchic_ December 16, 2013, 4:52 pm
My question is “CAN he go days at a time without marijuana?” If not, then he’s an addict and probably needs professional help.
How can you get him to cut back or stop? Give him an ultimatum and then follow through. Leave. Next time, don’t marry an addict.
SasLinna December 16, 2013, 4:59 pm
I feel that many of the comments are a little extreme. I don’t see any indication in the letter that this whole thing is in deal breaker territory. It’s just an annoyance to the LW, and probably a persistent lifestyle difference between LW and her husband. Not something that cannot be worked out though.
I also think that it would be better for the LW to accept her partner’s habit rather than trying to get him to change. I know he promised, but it won’t get you anywhere to insist on the promise. Work around the specific problems that you have when he’s high (if there are any), talk to him about making sure he’s never caught, and then leave it be.
I’ll add that in my experience lots of marriages have issues like this one. There is no perfect husband or wife. There is always something annoying about everyone, whatever it may be. The good couples are the ones that can agree to be different and live it with, those who stay flexible and who put their happiness above anything else, those who accept each other including their flaws.
mrmidtwenties December 16, 2013, 6:49 pm
Well shit, I just skimmed this and now I want a toke.
landygirl December 16, 2013, 7:09 pm
I’m with you.
Astronomer December 16, 2013, 7:16 pm
It sounds like this is a control and codependency thing more than a weed thing. What I mean is, the idea that you can’t bend him to your will is the problem, and you can’t remove yourself from the situation at all. You made him promise to cut down as a condition of marriage and he didn’t. You lost that battle. It’s over. If you need to control his actions so badly, I’m sure you’ll figure out better tactics for the next thing you don’t like.
In the meantime, think about what you do when he smokes. Do you glare at him? Argue? Hang out and be mad he’s not paying attention to you in the way you would like? How about removing yourself instead? Make some friends you can go out with in the evenings. Take a class, join a book club, volunteer, get a hobby, whatever. Just go somewhere and do something else. If you’re not constantly there with him all the time, he can smoke in peace and you can enjoy doing whatever you’d rather be doing instead. Just because you’re married doesn’t mean you have to spend all your time together doing the same thing. You can still have a life of your own, and he deserves one, too.
katie December 16, 2013, 7:32 pm
This is great advice. Why doesn’t the LW just work out something where she goes out and does whatever while he smokes? Everyone wins!
As Sampson would say, get a hobby.
iwannatalktosampson December 16, 2013, 10:28 pm
booya. Get a fucking hobby. I’ve had 3 glasses of one (which is 1 more than I’m allowed to have on school (fine work) nights) and for some reason it’s REALLY funny to me that she’s probably like “fine! I’ll get a fucking hobby” and he’s like giggling on the couch like “Yeah I’m going to hit my hobby all night long (and then you hear the bubbles of a bong)”
It’s not funny. But like, I’m laughing picturing it.
iwannatalktosampson December 16, 2013, 10:29 pm
I’ve had 3 glasses of one is 3 glasses of wine, FYI. Maybe we should all cut back on our hobbies.
Lindsay December 16, 2013, 7:28 pm
The thing about coming to compromises before a wedding is that you need to actually live out the compromise BEFORE the wedding. You can’t just say that after that date, you’ll do “whatever.” It’s essentially the same as saying, “After the New Year, I’m going to work out every day!” Not gonna happen.
It sounds like the LW was trying to avoid the thing where you marry someone assuming they’ll change by actually coming to an agreement, but that’s still assuming someone will change. If you haven’t seen it with your own eyes and know that they in fact can and want to, then it means nothing.
So, good luck, but it’s tough to break someone of a habit they don’t want to break, especially when their incentive (an impending wedding) is gone.
Ammie December 16, 2013, 9:18 pm
LW, leaving aside everyone’s feelings about pot (because really, this isn’t about pot, it’s about a fundamental lifestyle incompatibility), you knew who he was when you married him. You knew who he was when you had a five-year relationship with him before marrying him. Suck it up. You had a chance to walk away from him when you realized he was a committed pothead, and you didn’t. Instead, you made the decision to love him and build a relationship with him. So now you’re married to a guy who cannot and will not limit his usage, and it was your choice, and there’s not much to be done about it now. (Unless this is something you’d leave him over, but it doesn’t sound like it.) Love him and accept him for who he is, just like you did before the two of you married. Yeah, he broke his promise, but it wasn’t one you should’ve ever believed he would keep. You can’t change people, they have to want to change themselves. And he clearly didn’t want to change, but felt pressured into agreeing. It’s no surprise at all that he couldn’t do what you wanted.
CattyGoLightly December 16, 2013, 9:21 pm
Ouch… people are kind of harshing the DW mellow on this thread!!
Firstly, I can maybe see why she drew the line at “getting married.” It’s the day you’re supposedly choosing to commit to someone and their idiosyncrasies for the rest of your life, which is an awfully long time. Shit gets real. Maybe before, she was thinking “Why does it matter so much? I don’t even know if I’ll be with him forever.” Should she have brought it up in the beginning/sooner? Yes, but possibly it was something her younger self was OK with, but she’s gotten over it the older she gets. Maybe he smokes more than he used to. At the very least, they should have tried it out before they got married, but maybe she thought having a discussion about it would be enough. She gave him her honest opinion, and he said agreed to do something about it. Sadly, it’s too late now to go back to “should have” so I’m just going to drop that here. She should have done it differently, but she didn’t. People make mistakes.
Secondly, she’s also probably mad because he’s also STILL AGREEING with her that 1-2 times a week is fine, when his actions clearly say something else. This is probably why she’s frustrated. If he said “No, actually, I still want to smoke every day” then they could move on from it and she could figure out what she wants to do. Honestly, I think he’s doing her a disservice by still kind of agreeing with her in words, while disagreeing with her in actions. That’s confusing! I can see why she’s frustrated! He won’t just tell her the truth of what he wants.
Thirdly, she does need to clarify why it bothers her, but as someone who has been in LTRs with heavy smokers, I will say it can be annoying. Even though some of them smoked a lot, I could still tell a difference between sober vs. stoned (and I promise it wasn’t “She thinks she can tell because she KNOWS they smoked. I didn’t have to see to know. Not 100% of course; I’m not a wizard.) Sometimes though you do just want to go out to dinner and have a decent conversation, and have them be quick and witty and not forget things you say. It does affect different people in different ways though, so maybe her husband is completely himself while smoking, maybe not. If he’s not, she needs to say what about it is bothering her. Does he forget what she says? Does she have to repeat herself? Can they not keep the conversation on track? Is he not as fun for her to be around when he’s stoned for the previous reasons?
She probably sees it as “We are on completely opposite sides of this issue, and I am trying to compromise and meet him in the middle somewhere and he’s not trying at all.”
I’m not against smoking at all, so please don’t take this as “CattyGoLightly hates smoking and smokers and is a shrew!!!!” I mean… let’s just say I live in CA and medical cards are not that hard to get. I just think people are being a little hard on the LW.
Sorry that was kind of long… I just felt like the LW was kind of getting ripped a new one, and wanted to give her a little support.
Lucy December 16, 2013, 9:24 pm
I haven’t read all the comments because there’s almost 400 of them, and, no way. But I skimmed a few of them, and they seemed disproportionately hard on the LW and apologists for the husband. IMO this is on both of them. She was naive to think a daily pot smoker would magically cut back to an infrequent smoker just because she married him. He’s just a garden variety liar who has made the same promise over and over but made no effort to actually keep it. Her description of his behavior makes him sound like an addict, and if he is, the idea that he’ll cut back because she bugs him to is pretty laughable. But he could just be a conflict avoidant guy without much personal integrity.
Either way, LW, you need to now do what you should have done before you got married. Assume that he is never going to change his smoking habits, and then decide for yourself if you can accept him exactly as he is right now, including raising kids or whatever your future goals are.
If you can, then shut the hell up already. Let him take any consequences of his smoking, career, legal or otherwise. Don’t cover for him or enable him, ever. But otherwise, STFU about it. If you can’t, then tell him so. And then, when nothing changes (because it won’t), then follow through. Otherwise you’ll spend the next decade or so nagging him, and THEN end up divorced. Might as well get it over with now and still have those years to put to better use.
Skyblossom December 16, 2013, 9:35 pm
This sounds like his smoking weed was a deal breaker for you and not smoking weed was a deal breaker for him so the two of you agreed to a compromise because you didn’t want to break up. Now the two of you are stuck with you wanting him to not smoke weed and he smokes weed everyday. Neither of you is happy because this is still a deal breaker for both of you. If you wrote this letter before the wedding I’d say postpone and see what you can do to make both of you happy but it’s too late for that now.
You’re at the point where you can see he’s not going to smoke less so you have to decide whether you can live with it or do you need some space to think about it or do you call it quits. Some people might think that it is extreme to quit but if you have no children now is the time to get out if you truly can’t stand the thought of living with it for decades. It is much, much easier to quit before children than after children.
At this point in time I’d research the effects of paternal marijuana use on sperm quality and the risk of birth defects if you want to have children. Are there increased risks? Are you willing to take those risks? Also, look into the effect of smoke (any smoke particles in the air) on the asthma rate in children, I think there’s a strong link.
Someone suggested you leave home every day when he smokes but I find the idea of you having to leave your own home every single day to avoid your partner’s habit that you find obnoxious as too much to ask. No one should have to leave their home every day to avoid an uncomfortable situation.
The bottom line is that you have to decide whether this is a deal breaker for you. I don’t think this is a control issue. I think the two of you want different lifestyles and neither of you want’s to give up on you’re preferred lifestyle. This is one where there really isn’t much room for compromise. He either smokes pot or he doesn’t. You either live with it or you don’t.
CattyGoLightly December 16, 2013, 9:56 pm
I don’t see it as her being a controlling wench either! They just want different things, and unfortunately did not iron it out before getting married.
But yes. I agree. Decide if it’s a deal breaker, if not, let it go. If it is, tell him so. If nothing changes, leave. Those seem to be the two options here. Neither of them sound fun, but they don’t sound as bad as having to live a life you don’t want for the rest of your life.
kare December 16, 2013, 11:17 pm
Why does the LW’s husband smoke weed? To me, that makes a difference. Is it just a habit and he likes it? If so, then the ability to cut back would annoy me. (Similar to any other habit – constantly surfing through tv channels, leaving shoes strewn about the living room, etc). If the weed is legitimately a way to reduce anxiety, helps him sleep, etc, then I understand. Yes that can be viewed as a dependency. However, a partner’s health and well-being is more important to me than winning an argument. Of course, he could stop smoking weed and switch to a legal alternative. He would also then deal with the potentially harmful side affects. For example, I took Prozac seven days each month for PMDD. It helped a little bit, but the half life was so long that it had repercussions. A week after taking the medicine, I’d have a drink or two with a friend and be completely incapacitated. I can understand why someone doesn’t want to deal with that.
I will smoke pot, but I’m afraid of anti-anxiety medication. My brother quickly developed a dependency on Xanax and Clonazepam that almost destroyed his life. He NEVER came close to having any issues when he was habitually smoking weed. I wish he would go back to smoking weed, but his previous job drug tested frequently and now he’s on probation. Obviously, he is an extreme case, but I know so many people with pill addictions that it frightens me. People don’t blackout or overdose or become suicidal when smoking pot.
Skylar December 17, 2013, 12:06 am
Dude- weed is awesome. All it does is expand your mind. Maybe if you blazed a j with your hubby you would appreciate it more. 😉
Weed is not addictive, and if it doesn’t interfere with his everyday life, you asking him to quit by this point isn’t going to work. Do you drink alcohol? That’s about 1000x worse than smoking pot.
My advice here is to try and share this activity with him more often to see why he likes it so much. If you decide you really hate it then thats fine- but you can’t make him stop doing stuff just because *you* don’t want him to.
snoopy128 December 17, 2013, 1:36 am
At this point there is only one way I could see to handle this. You need to have another talk. You need to figure out your hard line. What is it you want? Why do you want it? What does he want? What does him not doing what you want mean for you? If he doesn’t agree to what you want, where do you go from there?
You made this mess by trying to change him, setting a deadline which means you can’t use it as a deal breaker (i.e. after the wedding), etc etc etc.
If it were me, I’d sit down and have “the talk” all over again. Something along the lines of “So look, clearly our pot deal isn’t working. I’m not happy, nothing has changed, I’m sure my nagging isn’t making you happy, so where do we go from here? How do we make each other happy”
But in order to get to this place, LW, you have to steer clear of the emotions- the emotions behind the broken promise. The emotions behind the pot smoking. It needs to be a factual conversation about your needs and wants and his needs and wants and you are going to have to compromise. Whether that compromise is he smokes when he isn’t around you, and you don’t have to deal with the negative side effects you don’t like (i.e. second hand smoke, hanging with a stoned person, etc. etc). But going down this route ALSO means you need to not be angry or resentful when he chooses to smoke pot AND if you are feeling like “he’s choosing pot over you” that you realize it’s an issue of a) you wanting to spend more quality time with him, and b) you resenting when he smokes. Does that make sense? Like if you think him smoking pot is taking away from your together time, you need to realize that you need more together time, not that he needs to smoke less.
I’ve been down this road with an ex. There’s a reason he’s an ex. Actually now he works at a medicinal grow op. So clearly we had differing views about ‘reasonable’ pot use and neither of us was willing to compromise (amongst many other shitty things in our relationship). I can understand some of the feeling you might be having about his pot smoking (or not, everybody is different).
But at the end of the day, you signed up for the guy you married on your wedding day. Clearly nagging him isn’t working. Clearly the deal isn’t working. So find out what about it isn’t working for him. I agree with some of the others that he probably sees the 2x a week logic as a rather slippery slope.
So, TL:DR: have a new talk. Check your emotions at the door. Constantly re-evaluate whether your emotions towards him smoking pot are because he is smoking pot, or is it something else missing in the relationship that you can substitute as him smoking pot (my example of not enough time together being seen as him choosing pot over you).
Addie Pray December 17, 2013, 6:42 am
To Diablo: i was billing! I didn’t get to read all the back-and-forth above until now. And it makes me feel like I need some weed to handle all that commotion!
Diablo December 17, 2013, 6:01 pm
Good, cuz i got next to SFA done yesterday, thanks to weed. And i wasn’t even smoking any.
Christy December 17, 2013, 8:04 am
GatorGirl/LW, (in case you’re overwhelmed by comments and seaching for your name, because I know I do that) gf and I were talking about this. Does GGuy/LWguy want to cut back on his smoking? Like, does he actually want to? Because it sounds like he does, and he’d like to cut back to 2ish times a week. Here’s what I realized, and gf agreed: If he’s trying to cut back and can’t, and if that’s an issue for him, then you should more-strongly advocate for him quitting entirely. Because it’s really hard to have a soft boundary. If he knows that he’s DONE smoking though, that can be a lot easier to stick with.
Do you think he’d agree to that? Because if he wants to cut back and he can’t do it, then it would be a lot easier for him to cut it out entirely. (You could talk about reintroducing weed, like, if he wants to smoke in social situations or on Saturdays or something AFTER he’s figured out if he can quit entirely. I wouldn’t really advocate this, but I think it’s a possibility.)
You also said this, and I want to address it: “Sure, work with the partner and be understanding, but how long does that go on? Months, weeks? There comes a point where understanding is enabling, and just letting the other person not uphold their part of the bargain.”
I agree with you here. Here’s what I think you and GGuy should do. I think you and he talk about this issue again, and if you both agree with the idea that if he can’t cut back, he needs to quit entirely, then set a deadline on it and agree to it. I say give him until the end of football season. (But he should be agreeing to this too.)
Good luck with this! I think you got a lot of flak in the comments about not liking GGuy smoking every day, and I don’t think that’s fair. From what I’m hearing you say, he wants to cut back too. And wanting to cut back and not being able to cut back (on anything) is scary and a Problem. (I want to cut back on random junk-food binging and I struggle with it, and I think of it as a Problem. So it’s not a weed hangup I have.) Please update us, even if it’s just an anonymous update to Wendy.
kerrycontrary December 17, 2013, 9:03 am
I agree with Christy and I was thinking about this last night. I think maybe just drop it for now since its causing bickering (and that’s stressful enough with the holidays, and if it is you GatorGirl then you also have that stupid car situation to deal with). Set a longer deadline and pick it up at a later date. I think this is a tough situation and I really feel for you.
Skyblossom December 17, 2013, 10:02 am
Your situation isn’t going to get any easier. You’re already arguing a lot and life will only get more difficult and more stressful. Owning a home is more stressful than renting. Children are much more stressful than being child free. Work is often more stressful than graduate school. If he can’t handle the stress in his current life how is he going to handle increased stress? If you have children will you never get a break because he’ll be stoned and unable to watch children? Can you live like that? Do you dread it?
One of my cousins was married to a guy who turned out to be an alcoholic. She knew he drank when they got married but she didn’t realize at that point that he was an alcoholic. They had big dreams together. She was going to get an MA degree and he was going to run for public office. They met while working in a US senator’s office and he had the contacts and encouragement to run for local office. After eight years she had her MA and was working full time and he not only had never run for office, his only job was being a chapter advisor for his college fraternity. He oversaw something like 8 chapters and visited them and drank with them. His drinking took his dreams and left nothing but drinking. Two years of marriage counseling couldn’t fix alcoholism and they ended up divorced. She wasted more than a decade of her life on this guy and her prime childbearing years. She wants a baby and has just now gotten engaged and she is 39. I’m hoping she gets to have a baby but who knows at this point.
You have to decide how big a problem this is. Is he an addict? Does he have to have it daily? Is it affecting his ability to complete school? Will it prevent him from getting the type of job that he wants? Ask yourself if this is a life altering problem, one that affects your ability to reach life goals with him. If it isn’t you can work with him. If it is then the best thing you can do for yourself and your future happiness and goals is to leave.
tzvifl December 17, 2013, 10:56 pm
I have been reading most of this discussion (it’s very long) and its interesting. But I have a question for those who insist that the LW is wrong to have an issue with her husband’s post-smoking. Let’s change the situation from pot not to alcohol but to cigarette smoking. What it I had a partner who smoked and I hated it – because of the smell both in the house and on my partner, because of the second hand smoke, because of the likely effects down the road on his health, because of the expense. And what it I told him or her this was a major concern, possibly a dealbreaker for me. And they agreed to gave it up or at least cut down heavily in order to marry me. And then they didn’t.
Would most people here really say that it was my fault for not just accepting the smoking was not going to change, and anyway, I should just get over it, because what’s wrong with it if he or she wants to smoke? I doubt it very much . Yet every one of those problems with cigarette smoking also applies to pot smoking (The pot smokers on this forum who insist that pot smoking does nothing but wonderful things for regular smokers will probably come back denying any such reality, but they need to look at the evidence – see for instance – not what postsmokers tell each other so they do not have to confront the possible costs of their psychological dependence.)
I think the same applies here. If my partner promised to stop or largely stop smoking – cigarettes or pot – after I made it clear that it was a semi-dealbreaker, and then went back on this, and reminding them of the deal did not help, I would seek counselling. If that did not help, I would MOA. A rare case, I think, where Wendy got it wrong.
Breezy AM December 28, 2013, 9:33 pm
I’m just really glad my husband owned that if he didn’t want to be married to a smoker, he should not have married one, no matter how bad I wanted to quit. I’m glad he let me own my own problem (to be fair he had his own demons to work on) because nothing would make me want to light up more than him up my ass about it and reminding me what a failure I was to him for continuing to smoke. I’m glad I didn’t dread my wedding day, and was able to tell him before hand that while I wanted to quit ~eventually~ I could not promise a specific date (being held to that would make me totally averse to quitting).
If I had not been given that space to find it myself, I don’t think I would have nearly 7 years of being smoke free today. I’ve had a handful of hauls over the years from smokers while drinking, and every time I think “grooooossss how did I do this for years?!” I love being a non-smoker. I love being a non-smoker because it was my choice and I owned it. I mean I’m glad my husband is happy about it but frankly I didn’t do it for him. I did it for myself, so I could live a clean and healthy life. Everything smells better when you’re done smoking.
And yeah, I do think the same about it, whether cigarettes or not. I’m a person of good faith so I assume it was naiveity but really, hard habits are near impossible to quit, especially when brought about by the will of another. Yeah sure he agreed. He would never ever have bothered to change unless she had brought it up. Doesn’t matter if it’s smoking weed, cigarettes, or biting his nails. It needs to be his problem. She can’t blame him for her fault in marrying a man who smokes weed when that’s an issue for her.
SasLinna December 29, 2013, 4:13 am
This was interesting for me to read, since my partner smokes cigarettes. Obviously I’m hoping that he’ll quit eventually since I’m worried about his health. From time to time I feel the need to mention it, but I should probably cut that out entirely. I think you’re spot on about the importance of people making the decision to quit themselves. My partner has said before that he will quit if/when we have children. I’m not taking that as a guarantee though.
BeenHere January 16, 2021, 2:53 am
Maybe it was optimism, wanting to give the guy a good ol chance. Maybe the wife came from a family home with issues similar to this, and she was accustomed to setting her own feelings aside, giving infinite chances, and all of this other enabling behavior. Who knows what the motivations were. In my experience, my spouse stopped smoking when we started dating. Continued on with video game & porn addictions that I didn’t realize even existed until we were close to the wedding. Then, when weed became legal years after marriage, started smoking again. Every waking moment of the day (when he isn’t at work) he’s stoned. He can’t remember anything. He lacks consistency. He has no interest in caring for our children. There is no intimacy, because sex can’t compete with weed or porn. No doubt… no doubt… weed makes him happy. It’s one of the few things he loves in life. And, for someone with an obvious addictive personality, it’s one of the less destructive things he could be obsessed with. I can’t say it’s the weed that’s done it specifically, but certainly the addictions altogether have necrotized our relationship. When we were in our early 20s, I was inexperienced and believed his parents when they said he was just being young & would grow out of everything, but in retrospect they were saving face for him because of course they wanted their son to have a long-term partner to “watch out for him”, knowing he had problems. I hope “Problem With Pot” left her husband (I don’t know how long ago this was written). He will never change. You can bargain and explain and reason for decades, but that is just him trying to stall because… rejection & abandonment hurt. Hard choices & moves are hard. No matter what the dependency is, once the alcohol/weed/pills are taken away, the person will replace it with something else. They can’t help it, their brains are wired for that. Sometimes it’s something like obsessively exercising or obsessively building model ships. Sometimes it’s another vice. Because addiction creates so many chemical rewards in the brain, some people aren’t as motivated to make sacrifices for love (love also creates chemical rewards, which is why some people become love addicts). Addiction fulfillment + actual scientifically observed chemical responses to weed creates this super easy, unchallenging, consistent way to have those wonderful feelings without all of the work you have to put into relationships. The only real reason to have a trusted relationship at all, I suppose, is to have someone to talk to while you’re stoned, or someone who can take care of the practical aspects of life while you’re checked out. Otherwise, why fight and stress and make sacrifices for a relationship that does… what, exactly, that you can’t get easier from weed & the internet? This all sounds harsh, but I’ve had years to think through & process all of this, and I can see the logic. It doesn’t fit with what I want in life, but it makes me understand why a pot smoker might rather lose a spouse than give up the habit. Weed becomes such an identity, too, that rejection of it feels like rejection of the person. We all find happiness in different ways, and we all deserve happiness (within reason!) , so if anyone is unhappy in a relationship at the get-go, feeling an addiction is being put before them, and they have no ties aside from the marriage or mortgage, don’t stress over it for too long… just leave. The significant other will find a companion who can share pleasure in the same things. The person leaving will have a chance to start over… but probably should go to counseling to figure out why they chose an addict in the first place, or the pot addicted husband might be unfortunately replaced with a gambling-addicted boyfriend, or a sex addict, or a pill addict, etc.
Jill March 13, 2021, 9:31 pm
My husband is a pothead and uses it in high doses daily. As medication. It’s too much. Not sure what to do about it