If your partner is struggling with alcohol abuse, this can cause stress and frustrations to your relationship. It’s not easy dealing with this situation especially if you’re not ready to give up your marriage and you still want to keep your family together. You might be feeling helpless or perhaps you’re confused about what to do? Can your marriage survive this challenge?
There are different methods of coping if you’re married to someone who’s struggling with alcohol abuse. Keep in mind that even if you want to help your partner, you have to also prioritize yourself and your family. Here are some suggestions that could help you cope during this difficult situation.
Don’t blame yourself
When your partner is struggling with alcohol abuse, you might start asking yourself if this was your fault. Were you too hard on your partner? Are you doing something wrong? Did you drive your partner to drink? What can you do for your partner to stop drinking?
It’s not unusual to start blaming yourself but keep in mind that your partner’s decision to drink is beyond your control. It is not your fault why your partner is struggling with alcoholism so don’t start feeling guilty or apologetic for your partner’s condition.
Don’t make excuses for your partner
Did your partner miss a family celebration because of being drunk the night before? Or maybe your spouse used the money meant to pay the bills to buy alcohol? It is common for alcoholics to start neglecting their responsibilities. When this happens, it is not your responsibility to cover up for your partner to make them look good in front of other people or your loved ones.
If you’re in the habit of making excuses, this will not help the situation, rather, it could even lead to your partner thinking that it’s okay to keep doing these negative things again and again.
Find a support group
Talking to people who are in the same boat as yours can do wonders for your mental and emotional health. It is difficult to go through this experience alone without having an outlet to express what you’re feeling. Joining a support group specifically for those with family members dealing with addiction is a good way to find like-minded people.
The great thing about these support groups is that you don’t have to fear being judged because there will be people with similar experiences who you can draw advice and strength from. If there is no local support group in your area, you can also check online support groups that hold virtual meetings online.
Learn how to detach with love
Detaching with love does not mean that you’re going to totally forget about your addicted loved one and stop caring about them. Detaching with love involves putting yourself first and taking a step back while recognizing that your partner will continue to hurt you if you don’t.
When you detach with love, you could still speak to your partner and treat them with love and respect, however, you stop yourself from being financially and emotionally available to them at all times, which could enable their addiction.
For married couples, this could be difficult especially if you’re still living in the same house and your children are being affected. Depending on your situation, you will have to decide if physical detachment is necessary to protect yourself and your family.
Encourage your partner to get help
How many times have you told your partner to stop drinking? Probably many, many times already. This is perhaps one of the topmost reasons why you argue. If not, alcohol’s influence has probably made your partner more aggressive and unable to rationally reason with you regarding different aspects of your relationship.
If you want your partner to get help, try to start the conversation without anger or accusation. When you start shouting at your partner and demanding that they go to rehab, this will only make them defensive. Instead, try to speak to your partner when you are both calm. If you feel that you are not able to do this alone, you can stage an intervention with significant people in your life. It is also recommended to consult with an intervention specialist to make sure that you’re doing it the right way.
If you or a loved one is struggling with alcohol abuse, help is available.
Contact Lighthouse Treatment Center today.