Should Couples That Abuse Drugs Or Alcohol Together Go Through Treatment Together?

Intimate couples tend to share everything with each other—and that can include addictions. It isn't unusual for both partners in a relationship to struggle with addiction together. If that's the situation that you and your romantic partner are in, you may both find that it's easier to kick your addiction when you kick it together. Here are some of the benefits of going through substance abuse treatment as a couple.

1.) You'll both quit using at the same time.

When only one member of a couple goes into rehab or starts addiction counseling, it can make it very hard for the recovering partner to avoid temptation. If your partner still has drugs on hand, the temptation to relapse can be very strong—and easy access to drugs makes it even more difficult to resist.

2.) You can both learn to avoid behavior that enables the other's drug addiction.

Many people think that couples who share an addiction aren't really concerned with each other's welfare—but studies indicate that the opposite is often true. Unfortunately, couples that are both addicted show their concern for each other by helping each other avoid painful withdrawal symptoms and procure their drugs of choice. Researchers have even found that women in happy relationships find it harder to leave substance abuse behind—probably out of fear that they would lose their otherwise-worthwhile relationship.

3.) You can learn new ways to interact and reinforce intimacy with your partner.

Your substance abuse and your relationship with your partner may be heavily intertwined for a number of reasons:

  • you or your partner may have emotional issues that prevent displays of affection unless intoxicated or high
  • one or both of you may not be living up to your domestic responsibilities in the relationship, neglecting your job, home, or children
  • you may have both lost track of the things that you used to enjoy doing together aside from drugs or drinking

Going through substance abuse counseling together can help you address issues related to the expression of intimacy between you and start developing new methods of interacting and enjoying your relationship without drugs or alcohol.

4.) You can maintain a united front after rehab with others.

One of the hardest things anyone faces after substance abuse treatment is that they often have to disassociate themselves from friends and relatives who are also substance abusers—while simultaneously trying to forge new relationships with people who aren't or rebuild relationships with those that they've alienated. If only one of you is distancing yourself from destructive relationships, it may be difficult for either of you to do so. Similarly, it may be difficult for you to find healthy friendships and relationships if your partner is still on a self-destructive path.

If you love your partner and you want to build a better relationship—without the specter of addiction hanging over your heads and controlling the path of your relationship—consider looking for a place that will treat you together.