A husband and wife sit on a sofa and face different directions in a display of disagreement, which can happen when living with an alcoholic spouse.

What Are the Effects of Living with an Alcoholic Spouse?

Living with somebody struggling with alcoholism can be immensely difficult. The emotional, psychological, and physical toll it takes on family members is enormous and frequently disregarded. 

Keep reading to explore the effects of living with an alcoholic spouse. At Buddy’s Ranch, we know the struggle and provide comprehensive assistance to families who require recovery.

The Effects of Living with an Alcoholic Spouse

Living with an alcoholic spouse brings about emotional upheaval that few other things can. Such constant worry over your partner’s well-being, unpredictable behavior, or financial insecurity may result in severe depression and anxiety disorders.

  • Anxiety: Nearly one out of every five adults in the United States suffers from some sort of anxiety disorder.
  • Depression: Research has found that spouses of alcoholics face high rates of depression.

Psychological Effects of Living with an Alcoholic Spouse

  • Repeated promises to quit drinking followed by relapses eat away at trust.
  • Feeling embarrassed or ashamed can lead to social isolation.
  • Unpredictable behavior creates an environment of fear and tension
  • Family members blame themselves for the alcoholic’s actions.
  • Constant criticism, manipulation, and neglect chip away at one’s sense of self-worth.

Physical Effects of Living with an Alcoholic Spouse

A person’s physical health suffers greatly when they live with their alcoholic spouses, too.

In attempting to deal with the havoc caused by alcoholism within their homes, individuals may forget about or neglect themselves entirely.

  • Sleep interruptions: Arguments, noise, or worry might give rise to disturbed sleep patterns among people who live with alcoholic spouses.
  • Poor nutrition: Alcoholics often drink instead of eating meals – so it comes as no surprise that nutrition suffers among family members, too.
  • Higher chances for drug abuse later in life: Kids whose parents were alcoholics have more potential to develop addiction problems themselves.

The Unseen Burden Of Financial Stress

Alcoholism not only consumes the person struggling with it but can also drain family finances.

Medical bills, legal fees, and lost income due to job loss or underperformance can push families into dire financial straits.

  • Medical costs: Families dealing with alcoholism have higher healthcare expenditures,  according to statistics.
  • Job loss: Failure by an alcoholic spouse to hold down a job can lead to a substantial reduction in household earnings.

Creating a budget, seeking professional advice from financial counselors, and tapping into community resources may be helpful ways to manage financial strain. However, it is essential to tackle the root cause, which is alcoholism itself.

Children And Other Innocent Victims Of Alcohol Abuse

Children growing up in homes where one or both parents abuse alcohol suffer greatly. Such trauma experienced during childhood often has emotional and psychological effects that can last well into adulthood.

  • Emotional neglect: When one parent focuses on drinking heavily, it leaves others in the family feeling ignored or unloved.
  • Behavioral issues: Children of alcoholics may be more likely to develop behavioral problems and substance abuse disorders themselves.
  • Academic performance: Bad concentration and absenteeism can affect academic performance.

Coping Mechanisms of those Living with an Alcoholic Spouse

Living with an alcoholic spouse often forces family members to develop unhealthy coping mechanisms such as denial, enabling, or adopting addictive behaviors themselves. These can include:

  • Denial: Ignoring the problem exists.
  • Enabling: Making excuses for the alcoholic’s behavior, thereby facilitating addiction.
  • Codependency: Sacrificing one’s own needs in favor of the alcoholics leads to codependent relationships.

Healthy alternative to these methods include:

  • Acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT): Assists family members in recognizing their emotions while committing to positive change.
  • Mindfulness and meditation: Emotional regulation and stress management techniques.

While living with an alcoholic partner, one needs to prioritize their physical and mental well-being. Seeking support groups, therapy sessions, and setting boundaries are all self-care practices that can help an individual cope with the challenges they face every day while staying with someone they love who is struggling with addiction.

Seeking Help: A Pathway to Recovery

Living with an alcoholic partner is tough, no doubt about it. However, recovery is within reach with the proper support and treatment tailored to individual needs. Buddy’s Ranch offers a safe space for those seeking help and healing.

Our alcohol addiction treatment programs are tailored depending on client needs, ranging between 30 and 180 days. 

We have separate men’s and women’s drug rehab centers for gender-specific care. In addition, we offer:

  • Acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT)
  • Family systems therapy (FST)
  • Rational emotive behavior therapy (REBT)
  • Art therapy
  • Mindfulness and meditation
  • Physical wellness programming
  • Medication-assisted treatment (MAT)
  • Motivational interviewing (MI)
  • Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT)
  • Dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT)
  • Psychoeducational meetings
  • Harm reduction and abstinence
  • 12-step groups

We ensure personalized care and attention by having six beds per house in our facilities, designed to provide a comfortable and intimate setting.

Take the First Step Towards Healing at Buddy’s Ranch

Having an alcoholic partner can be overwhelming, but you don’t have to face it alone. Buddy’s Ranch offers a supportive and nurturing environment for those struggling with addiction as well as their loved ones.

Ready for the next step? Get in touch with us today so we can help guide you on your journey towards recovery.

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