Addiction is a disease that impacts every part of a person’s life. When you have a spouse who is struggling with addiction, you know more than anyone else how much addiction can change a person. It is natural to feel a variety of emotions regarding your spouse’s behavior during active addiction. Facing the emotions that you feel is important for both you and your spouse to heal. Doing so will help you to set boundaries and protect yourself while supporting your partner’s path to recovery from addiction and mental health challenges that they are facing. Support from New Creation Recovery can help you to face the emotions you feel and heal as a family.
Addiction Impacts the Whole Family
Adult partnership and family remain the primary attachment for most individuals. Therefore, as a spouse, you experience and are impacted by your spouse more than others are. Your experience with a spouse struggling with addiction is unique. However, common issues felt by family members and loved ones due to addiction include:
- Economic hardship
- Emotional abuse
- Physical abuse
- Legal problems
- Emotional distress
- Loneliness in the relationships
- Lack of attachment
Your spouse’s behaviors that prioritize drug or alcohol use and their emotional dysregulation are at the root of the challenges that you feel with a spouse struggling with addiction.
Prioritizing Drugs or Alcohol
When your spouse prioritizes drugs or alcohol due to addiction, it greatly impacts your relationships. This occurs in a variety of ways, including using finances to support their drug or alcohol habit, which has a negative impact on your partnership. As a result, you may find yourself in economic hardship that you did not have prior to addiction.
In addition, prioritizing drugs or alcohol means deprioritizing other aspects of life. As a partner in the relationships, you will be impacted by these changes. For example, you may notice your partner is less interested in activities you used to enjoy together. This impacts your life directly and your partnership.
Addiction looks different for each person. However, emotional dysregulation is often found in those struggling with substance abuse. When your spouse is struggling with addiction, you will notice many changes in their behavior and emotions. They are more likely to lash out in anger and cause harm due to their emotional dysregulation.
How your partner treats you, emotionally and physically, is important. In a relationship, you need to feel safe. However, when your partner is struggling with addiction and emotional dysregulation, their interactions with you will vary and often be more negative than prior to addiction.
Facing the Emotions
Due to the entire family being impacted by addiction, treatment at New Creation Recovery often involves family therapy. In family therapy, facing the emotions you feel related to your partner’s addiction is important. This is because you are equally as important in the relationships, and therefore, your emotions are valuable in healing the relationship after addiction.
However, facing the emotions related to your spouse’s addiction is not easy. As someone who loves them, you will naturally want to help them. While this is kind and helpful, it can also inhibit you from facing your own feelings. In addition, you are likely to feel a variety of emotions surrounding your spouse’s addiction. These include anger, guilt, distrust, and more. As these emotions are often intertwined, the path to facing the emotions is not easy.
How Facing the Emotions Helps in Recovery
While it is not an easy thing to do, facing the emotions surrounding your spouse’s addiction helps you heal and allows you to support your spouse in an authentic and honest way. Therefore, treatment at New Creation Recovery encourages both you and your spouse to face every piece of addiction. This includes the patterns surrounding addiction and the hurt that has been done as a result of addiction.
When you face the emotions surrounding the challenges your spouse is struggling with, you allow yourself to protect yourself. For example, accepting that you feel anger regarding how your spouse has treated you helps you to know what treatment you are not okay with. This helps you to set boundaries. While boundaries can be challenging to set, they are beneficial for both you and your spouse. They help your partnership by protecting your needs. However, they also help your spouse to take responsibility for their actions, which is an important part of healing from addiction.
Supporting Your Spouse by Facing the Emotions
As a partner to your spouse, you do not want to leave them to struggle with addiction alone. However, for both you and your spouse to heal, each of you needs to take steps towards a new and better life. By facing the emotions that you feel, you support your spouse by being honest. You show your spouse that you are willing to acknowledge your feelings. This can help them to be honest about their experience and emotions, which in turn helps your partnership and their recovery from addiction.
Through family therapy at New Creation Recovery, you have an opportunity to express how their challenges with addiction and mental health have impacted you. Our facility solutions include staff counseling, which allows our experts to guide you to a place with honest communication. Your spouse can understand your experience and receive support in learning to share their own. In addition, treatment at New Creation Recovery helps you build relationships towards a healthy and supportive bond that helps your loved one remain sober long-term.
When your spouse is struggling with addiction, it is challenging to balance both supporting them and caring for your needs in healing. At New Creation Recovery, we understand that being the spouse of an individual struggling with addiction comes with inherent challenges and that you want to support your loved one. We aim to provide treatment that helps your spouse heal from addiction while helping their entire family, including you, to heal from the hurts that addiction has caused. If your spouse is in need of care and support, we can help. Call us today at (877) 868-5730 to learn more about our treatment options for addiction, mental health challenges, and a combination of both.