Healthy Relationships and Addiction
Recovery and Relationships are an Important Topic
The people in your life can have a significant impact on whether you are able to remain sober from alcohol, which is why recovery and relationships are so important. Having relationships with supportive people who understand that you are committed to a sober lifestyle can help you to stay on track.
On the other hand, recovering alcoholics and relationships can be a difficult topic, because some people may be unsupportive or even encourage you to drink. It is important to set boundaries around recovery and relationships so that you can stay healthy.
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Healthy Relationships Are Critical for Successful Recovery
Recovery and relationships can be a controversial issue, simply because relationships can either harm or help the recovery process. A study in Substance Abuse: Research and Treatment found that a caring relationship with a sibling or peer was an important part of staying abstinent. The study authors concluded that in order to promote successful outcomes in addiction recovery, it is important to seek out healthy relationships and to avoid negative relationships.
This means that during your recovery process, you should form relationships with people who understand your struggles with alcohol abuse and are willing to help you stay sober. On the other hand, if someone has a negative attitude toward your recovery journey, this relationship may be unhealthy and should not be a part of your recovery process.
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Recovery and Relationships May Require You to Cut Off Old Friendships
While it is never easy to say goodbye to a friendship, you may have to cut off friendships during your recovery process. Recovering alcoholics and relationships can be complicated, because you may have friends in your life who are still using alcohol. If this is the case, these friendships cannot survive as long as your friends continue to abuse alcohol.
As an expert writing for the Yale Journal of Biology and Medicine has explained, one of the key changes required to maintain sobriety is to avoid people, places, and things associated with substance abuse. This means that if you have friends who are still drinking, you should avoid spending time with them. Being around friends who are not sober can remind you of the times you were drinking, and it can trigger a relapse.
In some cases, you may have to have a difficult conversation with former friends and explain to them that you cannot be around them until they are able to stop drinking.
Recovery and Relationships with a Spouse or Significant Other
Another controversial topic in the area of recovery and relationships is whether it is acceptable to continue a romantic relationship with a partner who is still abusing alcohol. The reality is that if a spouse or significant other continues to drink, this can have a negative impact on your recovery journey. Being exposed to their alcohol use can put you at risk of relapsing, and you may even start to develop some resentment toward them if you feel they do not support your recovery.
The issues surrounding recovering alcoholics and relationships may require you to tell your partner that if they do not seek treatment for their own alcohol addiction, you will have to spend time apart. If your relationship is healthy, your partner should want to support you and avoid engaging in behavior that puts you at risk of relapse.
On the other hand, if your partner cannot commit to giving up drinking, the relationship may not survive. It might be helpful to engage in couples counseling sessions with your partner to help them understand the importance of seeking their own treatment to support your sobriety.
Managing Conflict Due to Recovery and Relationships
Another important consideration that applies to recovering alcoholics and relationships is the fact that alcoholism may have caused conflict and damage in your relationships, including your relationship with your spouse or significant other, as well as family relationships. For example, your spouse may have had to support the family and fulfill all childcare and household duties on their own if your alcohol abuse left you without a job or unable to contribute to the functioning of the family.
You may have also destroyed friendships or family relationships as a result of your behaviors while abusing alcohol. If this is the case, you may need to make amends with friends and loved ones. Your relationship with your spouse or significant other may require counseling to help you recover from the effects of alcohol abuse. After all, research shows that when a person in a relationship has a drinking problem, it harms relationship functioning.
Setting Boundaries Around Recovery and Relationships
Given the fact that relationships can play an important part in your recovery journey and your ability to stay sober, it is critical that you set boundaries related to recovery and relationships. Perhaps the most important boundary you can set is that you will not spend time around people who still drink alcohol in your presence or who encourage you to drink. You may feel guilty about cutting people out of your life, but you have a right to stand up for yourself and to distance yourself from people who threaten your sobriety and your well-being.
You are also allowed to set boundaries regarding what activities you will engage in. For example, you have a right to tell people that there are certain places where you will not spend time if they are a trigger for relapse. You also have a right to set boundaries around your rehab appointments. For instance, you may ask those people in your life respect that you will have appointments to attend, and you cannot miss them.
Recovery and Relationships: Selecting the Right Treatment Provider
If you are seeking treatment for alcoholism, it is important that you select a treatment provider that understands and addresses the issues surrounding recovering alcoholics and relationships. If you are looking for treatment on the West Coast, Resurgence is located in Orange County and offers a variety of treatment options, including detox, inpatient rehab, and outpatient services.
We believe in involving the family in the treatment process because addiction affects the entire family. This means that if you have a spouse or significant other in your life, we will include them in counseling so they can understand how to best support you. This can go a long way toward ensuring that your recovery and relationships can be successful. Ultimately, if you find that your relationships are unhealthy, we are prepared to support you through this challenge and assist you with developing the skills for healthy recovery and relationships.
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Paying for Treatment at Resurgence California
Once you have decided to make the decision to seek treatment for alcohol addiction, you may be concerned about covering the costs of treatment. At Resurgence, we take some of the stress out of the process by offering a free and confidential insurance verification program. Visit our website or give us a call, and we will be able to inform you of what services your insurance plan covers.
We accept most PPO insurance plans and are willing to accept private payment options as well. Once you begin treatment, we will do the work of submitting claims to your insurance company. Give us a call today; we are ready to help you get started on your recovery journey.