I have a wonderful boyfriend but I am very uneasy with his smoking of cannabis and the smell from it. He doesn’t do it excessively but it still continues to really bother me. Can you assist me with this?
Hazy and Confused,
Aloha Hazy and Confused
Thank you for raising a question that can be challenging to transverse. My first concern is your safety. Is his use affecting your relationship in a negative way?
For example, is he abusive in a physical or verbal way when he’s smoking? Or do you feel he becomes less present in your relationship or difficult to speak to? Is it affecting his productivity at work or other friendships?
If the response is “no” to the above questions, then it seems his use is more recreational and address with him that you don’t like the way he smells after smoking or the visual effect of squinty eyes.
I wonder if his use is triggering uncomfortable feelings of some unrelated experiences in your past history or from your youth? This experience is offering you a wonderful opportunity to explore and clear out, why you feel so much angst about his smoking.
By taking more ownership for your feelings, you’ll probably find his smoking will not bother you as much.
Communication between you two is important. Express to him that the smell bothers you and to come up with a solution that works for you both. For example, would he consider using a vapor when you are going to be around each other or take a shower and change his clothes before meeting up with you?
The use of cannabis is his choice. Maybe it relaxes him yet, if he’s using it to mask over emotional feelings, such as anxieties or painful past experiences it’s important to address and transform the root of the issue. That’s not to say he’ll stop completely even after clearing these issues out.
It’s important to understand and respect each other. Choose to be more accepting of his use. He shouldn’t feel he has to stop because you don’t like the way he smells.
There are actions that both of you can take to honor your connection and relationship and feel more accepting of each other.
Immediately address if at any point his smoking is negatively affecting the level of emotional intimacy or respect in the relationship. Seek out a professional relationship coach or counselor if you are not able to find a resolution between you two.
It sounds like overall, the relationship is positive and you care for one another, therefore sitting down should be a good thing to deepen your love for one another.
Tolerance is not always an a easy quality to develop, yet nonetheless it’s important, especially in a long-term relationship.
If you feel you need assistance with how to successfully approach your partner, feel free to check out my best-selling book, “In Love Forever: 7 Secrets to a Joyous, Juicy Relationship” on Amazon and read the chapter on communication skills: “What You Don’t Know Will Hurt You.”
I wish for you both much love and acceptance,
Cary Valentine, CRC, Author of the bestseller “In Love Forever- 7 Secrets to a Joyous, Juicy Relationship,”relationship expert and wedding officiant. Facebook.com/InLoveForeverCaryValentine and 346-6652.