Alcoholism can lead to severe emotional and health problems. Living with an alcohol addict is traumatic and when someone you love suffers from an addiction, it can tear you apart.
Alcohol addiction in marriage is much worse because of the emotional and psychological ties as the people you love have the power to hurt you more than anyone in your life.
When you know how to deal with your alcoholic spouse, life can become better. It can also lead to your spouse getting the help that is needed to recover.
Here are tips on helping your spouse overcome alcohol addiction:
1. Get informed.
In order to help your spouse cope with addiction, you firstly need to understand what addiction to alcohol is all about. You need to have the full knowledge so as to help your spouse deal with the problem.
You need to let them know that alcoholism is a disease and should not be underestimated and in order to fully understand it, it can be helpful to think of it in the same way you think of other diseases.
2. Open the lines of communication.
The person you are concerned about is never going to know you’re concerned unless you voice that. This may be an uncomfortable conversation for both yourself and the drinker, but it is a necessary one. Communication helps to bring attention to a loved one drinking and help them understand where your concern is coming from.
3. Don’t become angry
Instead of getting angry with your spouse, maintain a sense of peace and patience. Avoid targeting your spouse’s feelings. It may help to continually remind yourself that what you’re really angry at is the disease, not your spouse.
4. Don’t enable them.
Enabling means doing things for an addict which keep them in their negative habits. This could mean making excuses for them or bailing them out of bad situations. While it may be difficult to practice tough love, it will be beneficial for the addict in the end.
5. Don’t condemn them.
When dealing with an alcoholic spouse, try as much as possible to avoid condemnation. Rather than condemning their attitude, you should frame your feelings as concern for their health.
6. Suggest professional help
Depending on the level of your partner’s addiction to alcohol, you should suggest professional help medical treatment to enable them to overcome the condition.
Alcoholics tend to be very stubborn and would not want to believe that they have any problem that requires medical help, so you need to be very persuasive. You have to get enough information about alcohol addiction treatment before bringing up the subject.
7. Focus on yourself.
Don’t allow your partner’s condition to take over your life. Take care of yourself and take time to invest in your relationships with other people including your children, and extended families.