How To Know If Your Partner Has SUD

Finding out that your partner has Substance Use Disorder (SUD) can be crushing but it happens more often than you think.

Sometimes it can come as a surprise.

It could also be super obvious.

Nevertheless, it is a problem that has to be seriously dealt with and might require professional intervention.

If your partner is going through addiction, it is your responsibility to help them get over their addiction as much as you can.

Let us take a look at some signs which can point out that your partner has SUD.

They Isolate Themselves 

People who suffer from addiction tend to isolate themselves from everyone including their closest friends and family.

If your partner has an increasing tendency to stay alone for long periods of time it could be a sign of SUD.

However, you should see whether it is accompanied by other signs.

He or she could be struggling with another problem like depression or anxiety which makes them want to get away from people.

If it is SUD, they might be too afraid to ask for help.

Make sure you talk to them when their tendencies to isolate themselves start occurring frequently. Let them know that you are there for them and make them comfortable about being open.

Less Hygiene

SUD can disrupt your partner’s daily routine.

This can make them completely skip normal hygiene practices like taking a bath, brushing their teeth or taking care of their hair.

It is normal if it happens once in a while but if it starts to become a practice it can be a matter of concern. If this continues, it can take a toll on their health and lead to infections, poor oral health, bad odor and other body issues.

Physical Changes

SUD can lead to several physical changes.

If your partner starts looking thinner, more tired, sleeping a lot or their eyes are redder than usual it can be a sign of addiction. Their movements may become unsteady. Problems like severe headaches or bleeding nose may surface now and then.

These physical changes are among the more definite signs so make sure you are firm about confronting them. It is also a sign that they are deep into addiction and are abusing drugs on a regular basis.

As their partner you must step up and get them immediate help. If they accept that they’re taking drugs, convince them to join a reputed inpatient drug treatment program in your area.

You should also educate yourself on drug addiction to get a better idea of how to speak to them.

They Show Less Affection

Maintaining a relationship requires both partners to put in effort to communicate and show affection to each other.

If you notice that your partner is starting to lose interest or show less affection compared to before, it is a sign that he or she is going through something.

It can become more obvious if they prefer to hang out with another group and spend more time with them. 

The group could be using drugs and your partner might be tempted to join them all the time.

If it becomes a pattern don’t let it go thinking it is a phase. 

Confront them and have a proper conversation about their behavior.

They Skip Work Often

Skipping work once in a while isn’t alarming but if it happens frequently it could be a sign of SUD.

Pay careful attention to the excuses your partner makes.

Do they feel tired all the time? Or do they complain about feeling dizzy or nauseous?

Working at odd hours like in the middle of the night can also be a sign of SUD.

Don’t hesitate to confront the situation if this happens. Talk to them about therapy options without seeming forceful or aggressive.


Even if the signs are subtle don’t forget to call it to their attention.

It is always better to address it right away rather than wait. 

Before you know it they could be deep in their addiction and coming out will be even more difficult.