One of the biggest factors in successful addiction recovery is having a devoted support system. It is very difficult to have a spouse with addiction issues, but your assistance can make a huge difference. These tips can make it easier for you to deal with a spouse who is finally in recovery.
Recovery is a long process that is filled with a lot of uncertainty. Your spouse may relapse or suffer from personality changes while going through the process of getting clean. Recovery may not happen as quickly as you hope, but focus on praising your spouse for the progress that they have made instead of trying to rush the process along.
Do Not Take it Personally
Sadly, data from the National Institute on Drug Abuse shows that relapse rates for people with addictions are roughly the same as relapse rates for those with other chronic health problems. Though treatment has been shown to decrease relapse rates, it still happens sometimes. If your spouse falls back into old addiction patterns, do not take it personally. It is important to slightly separate your relationship from the recovery process and realize that a relapse or addiction does not mean that you are a bad partner.
Many spouses struggle to be supportive without engaging in enabling behavior. You can try to avoid enabling your spouse by establishing firm boundaries in your relationship. Do not make excuses for any behavior that may harm you or your spouse’s physical or mental health. Many spouses accidentally fall into a parenting role in their relationship with an addict, so they feel compelled to be the only responsible one in the relationship. It may be helpful to take a step back and allow your spouse to deal with the consequences of their behavior on their own.
Encourage Them to Seek Help
Sadly, many people’s attempts to avoid substance abuse are hampered because they do not get treatment. According to studies from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, only 11.2 percent of people who need treatment actually seek out help from an addiction recovery service. Your spouse values your opinion, even if their judgement is impaired by addiction. You can point out the benefits of seeking treatment at a drug rehab or detox facility to help them realize how important it is to get assistance during the recovery process.
The foundations of any strong relationship rely on open and clear communication, and this is particularly important during the recovery process. Try to discuss issues in a calm and honest manner while your spouse is not high or drunk. Though it is important to express your concern and reveal how their behavior is damaging, avoid excessive judgement or negativity. Speaking together with an addiction counselor or family addiction therapist can help to keep the conversation open without making your spouse feel attacked.
Learn About Addiction Recovery
You can have a more realistic and optimistic outlook if you take the time to learn about how addiction treatment works. Once you know about all of the processes involved in recovery, you can support your spouse by encouraging them to attend therapy sessions and meet with health care providers. Understanding your spouse’s unique journey will help you to work with your spouse on the road to recovery.
If you or your loved one is suffering from addiction, do not despair. Drug rehab and Dual Diagnosis treatment centers provide the tools necessary to live a healthier, sober life. Seek help today and learn more about how we can help you overcome addiction.