As a spouse to someone with a drug or alcohol addiction, you know all too well that this disease affects more than the individual user. Addiction in a marriage puts you on an emotional roller coaster for a long time. While rehab is a step in the right direction, it’s not an automatic fix. There will be ups and downs to your loved one’s journey, and you’ll have to find ways to be positive during this time and learn how to support your spouse in recovery.
If you choose to stay with your spouse, you might be wondering how you can support them as they go through the recovery process. Below are some of the best ways to give support and keep your marriage intact.
Let them put their recovery first.
One of the hardest things to remember right now is that your spouse needs to put their recovery first. Do not feel jealous or left out when your spouse goes to their meetings, finds new hobbies and meets new friends. Let them work their program and share their feelings when they’re ready. If you try to be too involved, this could backfire.
Practice good self-care.
Addiction affects everyone in the home, which means you’ve probably had a long history of pain, worry, and disappointment. Now that your spouse is working on staying clean, you can focus on yourself a bit more. After all, you can’t rely on your significant other to be happy. Aside from eating healthy, getting enough rest and exercising, now is a good time to create boundaries, establish roles for you and your spouse and attend a support group.
Find activities that you both enjoy.
It’s likely that you and your significant other have grown apart through the addiction. Now it’s time to find common ground and work on rebuilding your relationship. Find healthy activities and hobbies that you can both enjoy together such as cooking, dancing or going to the movies. As you enjoy life experiences with your spouse, you can heal past wounds and work towards a closer and more loving relationship.
Be patient and understanding.
Your spouse’s recovery will have ups and downs, plus everyone recovers at their own rate. Be patient if your significant other isn’t becoming the person you had hoped they would right away. It’s possible that your expectations are too high, but it’s also possible that your loved one is adjusting to their new life. To help process your emotions, talk to a professional counselor.
Start the Healing Process Today
When your spouse puts in the work and you’re there to support them, the good days will eventually outweigh the bad days. Both of you need time to recover from this disease, so let things happen on their own. Pushing too much or holding unrealistic expectations can have a negative effect. Remember, family therapy, individual therapy and support groups are your greatest tools.
To learn more about the family resources available at Awakenings Treatment Center, contact our outpatient drug rehab in Agoura today.