The Strain of Addiction: Marriage and the Road to Recovery

All marriages face trials and tribulations. Many spouses confront the challenge of being married to a loved one with a substance abuse problem. This can put a tremendous strain on even the strongest of relationships and should be addressed immediately before it spirals out of control.

A Display of Compassion

Helping a partner with a substance abuse problem is not easy or straightforward. It requires patience, love, and understanding. According to Psychology Today, there are many things that a partner can do to help their loved one begin a transition toward healing, including remaining compassionate. A loving family member can be a great motivator as a person embarks upon the journey to sobriety.  


Healing Together

The road to recovery is a long one, but healing together as a couple is a way to fortify the relationship and strengthen the motivation for staying clean. Couples that actively work to communicate and remain close will have a better chance of being each other’s support structure. As the spouse of someone in addiction recovery, it’s important to educate yourself on the recovery process so you can understand more about your partner’s journey.

However, it’s just as important to make sure you don’t sacrifice your own wellness and sense of self while encouraging your loved one to take care of theirs. It’s important to maintain a sense of self and not be completely consumed by the other person’s recovery. Let them carry their own weight as you support, cheer, and help balance them out.


When Trying Ceases to Be

There comes a time in this difficult journey when couples might face the possibility of separation. This might be done as a way to encourage the person to change, or as a last resort when the marriage cannot be salvaged. While it should not be used as a threat or ultimatum, leaving a partner will sometimes push them toward the rock bottom they need to commit to changing their destructive behavior.


Picking up the Pieces

Addiction can tear lives into pieces, and putting them back together can take some time. One of these difficult aspects includes getting finances back in order. Many times, addiction can send people into debt and into financial strain. According to Forbes, addiction can often lead to financial ruin and make achieving a healthy financial life next to impossible. When in the throes of addiction, people don’t always make smart choices in how they spend their money, and this can take a toll on a marriage. It’s important to rebuild by making a financial plan for the future. The Balance suggests that a successful financial plan includes strategies for budgeting, getting rid of debt, and creating an emergency fund. While it might seem like an uphill battle, beginning with a plan and committing to it will slowly turn things around and get your financial situation back on the right track. 


The road to recovery is hard and often painful, but it is not impossible. Couples have untangled themselves from the vines of addiction and have come out even stronger on the other side. It’s worth it to fight for recovery when your relationship with the person you love is on the line. 


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