How Best to Deal with an Alcoholic Spouse


It’s never easy living with an alcoholic spouse. Everything from worrying about their health to being frustrated about their condition can take a toll on them. It is important to know how to deal with them and offer them the right kind of support. This is where experts from Taylor Recovery come in to assist you in managing the situation better.

Consequences of Living with an Alcoholic Spouse

AUD(alcohol use disorder) is a disease where victims or patients cannot control their alcohol consumption even when the effects of the alcohol intake are negative. Sadly, impact AUD affects the patient and affects those around them. Spouses and family members are drained emotionally and physically. In severe cases, it can even lead to mental disorders. Common effects include:

  • Depression or anxiety symptoms
  • Trouble sleeping
  • Family, personal, and work negligence
  • Financial challenges
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder or trauma responses

Potential for abuse increases if you live around people with AUD. The disorder also contributes to escalating domestic violence.

Helping Alcoholic Partners

It is not always easy to support alcoholic spouses without external assistance. With professionals from rehab centers, it is easier to help alcoholic spouses cope. Below are some practical ways to support and assist your partners.

  1. Understand when to step back in case of crisis: While you are likely to naturally want to help when your spouse has a problem, doing this every time will never allow them to learn from it. Know when to stop and avoid coming to their rescue every time.
  2. Appreciate that they need external professional help: No matter how much you want to, you may not have the skills, tools, or experience to offer them the support they need. Seek professional assistance on their behalf.
  3. Avoid being an enabler: Avoid covering their ill behaviors with excuses and avoidance. Let them know when they have destructive behaviors that manifest in specific patterns.

Taking Care of Yourself

Your partner’s alcoholism can make you seem grounded. Most people ignore their well-being or household needs because of their alcoholic spouses. Make sure to balance your emotions and focus on your family and yourself even as you care and worry about the affected partner. Get the help and support you need if things become overwhelming. This may be difficult if you have lived with an alcoholic partner for years. Join a support group if you need.

How to Help – What you can Do

It is never easy dealing with an alcoholic partner, especially if the problem turns into unsafe habits. Most people end up anxious and depressed because of their partner’s alcoholism. Below are a few steps you should take:

  • Have honest communications
  • Learn more about alcoholism
  • Avoid judging them
  • Focus on current issues and not bring up the past
  • Manage your expectations

Taking about Alcoholism

It is possible to discuss with your spouse their alcoholism. Do this by:

  • Have your facts right. Research about alcoholism
  • Talk to them when you are sober
  • Discuss the contributing factors
  • Show them how their drinking habits impact the family
  • Avoid shouting and blaming
  • Talk to them when there is little to no distraction
  • Never offer ultimatums
  • Be present
  • Give specific examples

Helping Alcoholic Spouses to Stop Drinking

Note that the decision to quit is on them. However, you can help them choose by doing the following.”

  1. Intervening: Try to make them see how alcoholism is impacting their life. You may need professional guidance to do this right.
  2. Please seek professional advice: Encourage your partner to speak to a professional and start their treatment, albeit gradually.
  3. Help them choose a program: Walk with them through this journey and help them find the right rehab and programs.

Taylor recovery is a great partner to walk with. Call us today to help you support your spouse to recovery at any time.