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Sometimes it can be hard to notice if your husband is drinking too much. Even if you spend a significant amount of time with your alcoholic partner, the warning signs can go unnoticed. Your spouse may hide the signs of alcohol addiction, covering the frequency and volume in which they are drinking.
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Although it can be difficult to admit, your husband may feel ashamed of his heavy drinking. This can lead to secretive behavior.
It is essential to familiarise yourself with the common signs and symptoms of alcohol addiction if you suspect your husband has an alcohol problem. By doing this, you can gauge whether your husband is showing one or more of the signs of alcohol addiction.
Signs and symptoms of alcohol use disorder include:
The best way to help an alcoholic partner is to communicate the issue and understand the problem. Communicating with your husband is different from just talking to him as usual.
Communication is an ongoing process. It is possible to communicate in both verbal and non-verbal ways. When you sit down to speak with your husband, try to emphasize what makes you feel uncomfortable to be around him when he is drunk.
When you communicate with your husband, there are some things you should avoid. Otherwise, you may aggravate the issue.
Things to avoid:
High-functioning alcoholics are often able to maintain a career, practice healthy relationships with family members and friends, and remain financially stable while having a drinking problem. Despite appearing fine, functioning alcoholics often need a drink to get through the day and are good at hiding this from family members and loved ones.
If you are living with a high-functioning alcoholic or think you may be, communication is essential to help them.
Do not try to have a conversation when they are drunk. Instead, speak to them when they are trying to quit or cut down on alcohol. This will make them more receptive to your ideas, and it may make them realize that they need to change their behaviors. Make sure you remain non-judgmental and empathetic.
Make sure your husband is aware that you are genuinely concerned without placing any blame on him. Let him know that you want to tackle the problem together and support him throughout his recovery.
Try not to talk down to your husband or appear angry or upset. Try not to collude or enable him by lying to anyone for him or drinking with him.
There are many challenges you may face when living with an alcoholic husband. While these risks varying depending on the situation and the people involved, they include:
Here are some ways to help an alcoholic husband stop his alcohol abuse problems:
Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) is an international organization for those struggling with alcoholism. The organization consists of peer groups who meet to support one another through addiction and substance use recovery.
Members often meet in these support groups to discuss ideas and concerns linked to their alcohol and drug addiction. They support one another through triumphs and relapses.
Typically, more seasoned group members of AA ‘sponsor’ newer members. This helps guide newer members through the process and the steps to recover from alcohol addiction and substance use.
Committing to attempting recovery and seeking treatment for alcohol abuse takes courage. Yet, those struggling with alcoholism may not immediately be on board with admitting they have a problem or discussing treatment options. If your husband is not ready to seek treatment yet, you may consider an intervention.
An intervention is a process that usually involves a physician, drug and alcohol counselor, or an intervention specialist, meeting with loved ones. During an intervention, let your spouse know how his alcohol addiction affects you and ask him to look for professional help.
You should provide specific examples of his substance abuse ahead of time and offer a potential treatment plan. You should also give consequences for him if he refuses to accept help.
You must prepare to carry out the consequences if he does not agree to treatment.
There are many different treatment program options for alcoholism, including:
Behavioral treatments aim to change drinking behavior through counseling. Health experts lead them, and studies support that they are beneficial.
Family therapy is one of these services that can be beneficial for both you and your partner.
There are currently three medications currently approved in the United States to help people quit or reduce their heavy drinking and prevent relapse. They are prescribed by a health professional and may be used alone or in combination with other treatments.
Professional detox may help manage the withdrawal symptoms that can occur when someone experiencing alcoholism quits drinking suddenly. This can happen in an inpatient setting when the patient lives in a medical treatment center. Alternatively, it may be in an outpatient treatment program when the patient can detox while living at home.
Healthcare insurance is one of the most common ways to pay for alcoholism treatment. The amount of money insurance covers depends on the insurance company and what the health provider accepts.
Types of healthcare insurance that may cover addiction treatment include:
Another way to save money on addiction treatment is to look for a free or low-income facility. You can also seek programs that offer financing options. Financing can be an excellent choice because free rehabilitation centers often have long waiting lists and limited funding.
If you have any other questions about alcohol addiction treatment for your husband, reach out to an addiction specialist for more information. Call us to speak with an expert and help your husband begin the road to recovery.
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You don’t have to overcome your addiction alone. Professional guidance and support is available. Begin a life of recovery by reaching out to a specialist today.
Sharma, Nitasha et al., Living with an alcoholic partner: Problems faced and coping strategies used by wives of alcoholic clients., Industrial psychiatry journal vol. 25,1 (2016): 65-71, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5248422/
Intimate partner violence and alcohol, World Health Organization (WHO), 2006, https://www.who.int/violence_injury_prevention/violence/world_report/factsheets/fs_intimate.pdf
Alcohol and Drug Addiction Happens in the Best of Families, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), September 2012, https://store.samhsa.gov/product/Alcohol-and-Drug-Addiction-Happens-in-the-Best-of-Families/SMA12-4159
Krentzman, Amy R et al., How Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) and Narcotics Anonymous (NA) Work: Cross-Disciplinary Perspectives., Alcoholism treatment quarterly vol. 29,1 (2010): 75-84, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3140338/
Treatment for Alcohol Problems: Finding and Getting Help, National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, 2014, https://www.niaaa.nih.gov/publications/brochures-and-fact-sheets/treatment-alcohol-problems-finding-and-getting-help