When drug addiction affects a couple, it can be pretty challenging, whether they are married, live together, or are in a relationship. Addiction can affect your physical and mental health as well as your personal relationships. Getting addiction treatment at a couple’s rehab center can help to rebuild a relationship while on the path to achieving and maintaining sobriety.
People suffering from addiction can show obsessive drug-seeking behavior and find it hard to quit their drug use regardless of the adverse effects.
When both individuals in a couple are dealing with substance addiction, it can be harder to escape the cycle of abuse since the harmful behaviors can encourage the other person’s habits. People in couples also unknowingly reinforce each other’s addictions by continuously rescuing them and helping them, enabling them to continue with their harmful behavior.
Addiction and Codependency
In certain situations, the above-mentioned enabling behavior can be an indication of codependency in the relationship. Codependency is when an individual feels the need to care for someone else to feel valued and loved. Thus, they depend on the other person, and this becomes their identity. Codependence may include caretaking and rescuing mannerisms that could lead both partners to become more dependent on each other. This behavior can affect anyone, but most people with codependent behaviors have a background of unmet emotional needs and substance abuse in their childhood.
Codependents can victimize themselves, making them unable to escape manipulative and caretaking cycles. Thus, they can also be attracted to people with the same feelings and behaviors.
Codependency in couples dealing with addiction can be increased since these individuals cannot express their needs or establish boundaries properly, so each person is always sacrificing their needs to satisfy the other. This harmful behavior promotes addiction in the relationship because both parties become dependent on each other’s attention and caretaking and the substance they abuse.
Can A Couple Go for Drug Addiction Treatment Together?
Couples who want to stop abusing drugs can both get the necessary help from drug addiction treatment, especially if they embark on it together. However, not all rehab facilities provide addiction treatment for couples. For those that do, there are specific requirements you need to meet first, including not being violent towards the other party. Both individuals have to want sobriety and be committed to the relationship for the treatment to work. This is because if only one partner recognizes the problem or wants treatment, then the rehabilitation might not work for both of you.
Keep in mind that you cannot force an individual to acknowledge the issue, but you can encourage them and keep talking about it. You also cannot force someone to go for treatment if they are unwilling to do it.
How Does a Couple’s Rehab Work?
Drug addiction treatment for couples is aimed to address addiction and substance abuse for committed couples or married couples staying together. The mode of therapy used relies on whether one or both parties in the relationship are struggling with addiction. If both people in the relationship have a substance abuse disorder, they will start the treatment with detox supervised by medical professionals.
Depending on the facility and the couple’s specific steps, both parties will probably have to go through detox individually. The detox program will make sure both individuals are comfortable and safe during the withdrawal period. They will also help you minimize the withdrawal symptoms and prepare you for the next step of addiction treatment. After detox, the couple will either stay in separate rooms or share a room. The duration of treatment offered by inpatient rehab facilities goes up to 30 days for temporary stays and 60 days or longer for an extended stay. Couples’ addiction treatment can lead to longer periods of abstinence, healthier relationships, and a better chance of engaging and completing the treatment.
There are various other treatment methods available for couples suffering from addiction, including:
- Recovering Couples Anonymous (RCA), which follows the 12-step recovery process and gives couples a platform to rebuild their relationships and talk about shared experiences with other couples in recovery
- Behavioral Couples Therapy (BCT)
- Support groups such as Narcotics Anonymous (NA) or Alcoholics Anonymous (AA)
- Group counseling
- Individual counseling
Behavioral Couples Therapy (BCT)
This treatment aims to minimize substance abuse by rewiring the couple’s codependent interactions to help both parties maintain healthy long-term patterns. This approach is beneficial for enhancing the couple’s relationship and altering destructive behaviors and habits that result in substance abuse. BCT has been proven to be highly effective for couples compared to group counseling or individual counseling.
This method is almost the same as BCT, but it also recognizes that addiction affects all family members and relationships. Even if only one person in the relationship is struggling with addiction or substance abuse, family therapy can help each family member heal, recover, and make the necessary positive modifications.
Aftercare Support and Continued Recovery
After the treatment, the couple needs to maintain continued recovery support for sobriety and prevent relapse. Therapy in rehab centers helps couples recovering from addiction by showing them how to support each other and live a fulfilling, balanced life of sobriety. Recovery from addiction is a continuous journey that goes on even after addiction treatment. Both parties in the relationship will need to keep working on ways to maintain their sobriety permanently. This is why it helps to have an aftercare support plan designed with your loved ones, support members, and healthcare providers in mind.
It is beneficial to ensure you can access the right tools and support to stay sober and avoid relapse. Such tools may include counseling, 12-step groups, and educational programs, all promoting relapse prevention.