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Married to a Drug Addict

Marriage and Drug Addiction. Addiction Treatment for Couples. How to Help a Partner with Drug Addiction?

Being Married to a Drug Addict?

Alcohol or drug addiction affects the entire family. Substance-use disorders are a widespread and persistent health problem in the United States, with significant social and economic consequences. Long-term committed relationships, such as marriage, provide the primary form of social support for many individuals. Unfortunately, researchers have found that substance use is related to separation and remaining unmarried. [1] But what is it like to being married to a drug addict?

Being married to a drug addict is hard – and making your marriage work can be even harder. This unhealthy relationship dynamic takes a tremendous emotional, financial, and physical toll on the spouse as well as the addict. Not only that, but it often causes irreparable harm to the very relationship itself which is why marriages, where someone has a drug addiction, have higher rates of divorce.

10 Things to Do When You’re Married to an Addict

substance abuse problem is a chronic disease that requires lifestyle adjustments and long-term treatment, like diabetes or high blood pressure. Even relapse can be a normal part of the process—not a sign of failure, but a sign that the treatment needs to be adjusted. With good care, people who have substance use disorders can live healthy, productive lives.

Married to a Drug Addict
Are you married to a drug addict? Helping a spouse face their addiction challenges takes a team effort.
Ryan Zofay forming a circle and hugging friends.

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1. Educate Yourself on Addiction

A family that is conscious of its role in helping the loved one to recover is likely to offer both the physical shelter and the psychological safety one needs during the early stages of addiction recovery. Looking for help for family members of drug addicts? There are many services available to help people who are struggling with drugs or alcohol abuse and for their families to heal as well. If the person is interested in professional help, you can help them find a local substance abuse treatment service.

2. Detach with Love

Certain drugs can change the structure and inner workings of the brain. Repeated use affects a person’s self-control and interferes with the ability to resist the urge to take the drug. Not being able to stop taking a drug even though you know it’s harmful is the hallmark of drug addiction. Do you want to let go a drug addict, or you want to stay married to a drug addict? Deciding and figuring out how to let go of a drug addict you love may be painful, but it might also be the best possible thing you could do for both yourself and the addict to stop enabling them.

According to PsychCentral, detaching with love can be more supportive than enabling because it allows the person with substance use disorder to experience the consequences of their actions. This doesn’t mean you stop caring or that you cut off contact. In fact, detaching can sometimes be the best way to preserve the relationship. [2]

3. Avoid Blame

When you are married to a drug addict and you learn the facts about drug addiction, you’ll understand substance abuse is a disease. Blaming and judging your spouse for their actions doesn’t help. It only makes them turn away from you. Chances are good they want to quit using drugs or drinking, but they just don’t know how. Blame never solves anything.

4. Be Consistent with Boundaries

Substance use disorder may sometimes impact a person to the point of risking their job or housing. If you are married to a drug addict, it may feel impossible to refuse to help a loved one in this situation. Though challenging, sticking to your boundaries can be important in these tough circumstances. It’s also critical to try not to lie or make excuses for their behavior. Shielding them from the consequences of their actions could be harmful in the long run.

5. Don’t Isolate

Many find it helpful to join a self-help or support group for friends, families, and loved ones of individuals struggling with an addiction or in recovery. Get the therapy you need to work through your emotions and take care of yourself first.

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Even if you have failed previously and relapsed, or are in the middle of a difficult crisis, we stand ready to support you. Our trusted behavioral health specialists will not give up on you. When you feel ready or just want someone to speak to about therapy alternatives to change your life call us. Even if we cannot assist you, we will lead you to wherever you can get support. There is no obligation. Call our hotline today.

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6. Practice Self-Care

As a partner, you want to care for your significant other, and when they are suffering from a life-altering disease like addiction, this can suck all the energy you have. If you are facing challenges in your life, the last thing you’re probably thinking about is how to incorporate more joy into your life. But, think about what brings you joy and try to include as many of those things as possible into your day. By finding more joy in your everyday life, you will become gentler towards yourself and others.

7. Stage an Intervention

Just as addiction treatment is not a one-size-fits-all process, neither are interventions.  Instead, there are multiple types and can vary on the setting, the number of people involved, and their relationship with the addicted person. Ready to approach them to get help?  You must have the right strategy and the proper support. Contact We Level Up treatment center for the intervention services.

8. Prepare for Rocky Roads

Even after your spouse enters recovery, your life and your marriage will never return to what it was before. That happens no matter what serious disease a couple faces, whether it’s cancer, a heart attack or addiction to drugs. Accept that your marriage is on a new footing, and learn what this means as you both embark on your spouse’s program of recovery.

9. Know When It’s Time to Leave

While you may make your best effort to help them, at some point, you might also have to understand how to let go of an addict you love. How to let go of a drug addict and take a break? If you threaten to leave but then continue to stick around, the addict learns that they can continue to depend on you to help support their addiction.

10. Seek Professional Help for Marriage and Drug Addiction

Make this your opportunity to reclaim your life. Call today to speak with one of our treatment specialists. Our specialists understand interventions. Many of them know what you are going through personally and can answer any of your questions. We Level Up rehab center’s free hotline is open 24/7 for no-hassle calls about interventions and more.

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How to Help a Partner with Drug Addiction

There are many reasons to support a loved one who is willing to go to rehab, but there are also valid points why you’re at the point of thinking about how to let go of a drug addict. At We Level Up, we offer family therapy to help couples and families work together to overcome their struggles. We understand that the impacts of substance abuse never stop with the addict. Family therapy creates a safe space to talk honestly and for each member of the family to gain what they need to repair the unit as a whole. [3]

Nar-Anon Meetings

Family members that are supportive and knowledgeable in the recovery world (especially with help from Al-Anon or Nar-Anon) will be extremely beneficial. For instance, offering practical help like taking you or a loved one to addiction treatment, therapy, or meetings. They can also encourage you to attend a 12-step program and even attend meetings with you. This type of help is essential in making you or a recovering loved one have a sense of importance and usefulness.

Addiction Treatment for Couples

If you or a loved one is struggling with substance use disorder, it can be easier to have this conversation with a doctor than with a family member. Not all drug rehab centers require long stays in residential treatment centers. For someone in the early stages of a substance use problem, a conversation with a doctor or another professional may be enough to get them the help they need. Doctors can help the person think about their addiction, understand the risk for misusing drugs, and come up with a plan for change.

Married to a Drug Addict
Effective therapeutic interventions involve both partners as well as your children if you’re married to a drug addict.

Family Program

We Level Up treatment center is committed to supporting families of a loved one that is undergoing drug rehab treatment. We Level Up caring staff and attentive specialists work hard to reconnect the broken relationships between families and their recovering loved ones. They set out to find mutual areas to help mend the client and family dynamics and underlying relationships.

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Can a Marriage Survive Drug Addiction?

Yes. If you or a loved one is dealing with an addiction to drugs, especially if you have experienced multiple relapses in the past, then look no further. With an incredible success rate for long-term recovery, We Level Up treatment centers offer one of the most comprehensive addiction recovery programs available in the U.S., bringing hope to families every day.

Despite the seemingly tamed and glamorized idea of drug use, it must be remembered that it can still lead to abuse, addiction, legal offenses, serious health problems, and even death.

The We Level Up treatment center can help with inpatient therapy programs exclusively. Because each client is different and requires unique, comprehensive care according to their situation, our staff of well-trained physicians and nurses first begin the client relationship with a detailed one-on-one assessment.

Detox Program

Withdrawal from drugs is an important first step to overcoming addiction. However, withdrawal isn’t an effective treatment by itself. You’ll need further treatment and support to help you in the long term.  [4]

Often, prescription or illicit drugs can lead to severe withdrawal symptoms. However, proper care and medical supervision will greatly reduce the chances of developing these symptoms and ensure a safe medical detox process.

Married to a Drug Addict
It may be hard to tell whether a person is high or experiencing morphine and alcohol overdose. If you aren’t sure, treat it as an overdose—you could save a life.

Once fully admitted and evaluated, the 2nd stage of detox gets underway:  stabilization.  Based on the data provided during the admissions process, patient feedback, and the symptoms observed;  our experienced team of medical addiction professionals will provide care to keep the patient stable and as comfortable as possible. [5]

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) is a widely used treatment for alcohol abuse and addiction to help individuals identify negative thought patterns, emotions, and problematic behaviors and learn how to make healthy lifestyle changes that decrease the urges to abuse substances; paying particular attention to symptoms of psychosis, depression, and other co-existing mental health-related problems or dual diagnosis that are exacerbated by stress.

Counseling Services

Individual, group and family counseling services are offered in the majority of mental health and substance abuse treatment programs to “get to the root of the problems”, improve communications and relationships, and motivate the abuser toward positive changes. . The structured guidance of a counselor helps the patient stay on track and in the right perspectives as they strive to achieve their potentials and goals of recovery.

How to stay married to a drug addict? Our FREE 24-hour Hotline can help you with the resources for addiction treatment. Get a free consultation now for the best-fitting treatment programs along with free rehab insurance verification. Call We Level Up today and speak with one of our addiction specialists to check your rehab insurance coverage and benefits.

Start a New Life

Begin with a free call to an addiction & behavioral health treatment advisor. Learn more about our dual-diagnosis programs. The We Level Up treatment center network delivers recovery programs that vary by each treatment facility. Call to learn more.

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[1] Marriage and Relationship Closeness as Predictors of Cocaine and Heroin Use – National Center for Biotechnology Information
[2] Lovingly Detaching from Someone with Substance Use Disorder –
[3] What It’s Like Being Married To An Alcoholic – Level Up Lake Worth
[4] Alcohol Misuse –
[5] Stabilization Treatment Program – We Level Up New Jersey

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