Sara has been sober for 60 days. She is happy to be clean, but sometimes still feels empty inside. She’s lonely without her party friends and feels judged by her spouse and other family members. She wants her husband to love her like he used to, before she hurt him, lied to him, and put their marriage in danger.
Carl knows he loves Sara, and more than anything he wants things to be like they were before. Carl wants to return to the times when he felt equally important in the marriage, and not like a second fiddle to her counselor, treatment program, recovery group, and all the meetings. He worries constantly about what will happen if Sara relapses.
Are you a committed couple that’s fighting for your marriage after one or both of you has had a substance abuse problem? We understand the difficult days ahead of you, and we know the mixed feelings that go into this very tough but defining period of your lives. We are here to help.
An Unexpected Situation
When you’re in the midst of substance abuse, deciding to seek treatment—and actually going through the treatment—may seem all-encompassing. But once you initially become clean, new questions may arise.
As a recovering alcoholic or user you may be asking yourself:
- Will my spouse ever really trust me again?
- Am I giving up on my social life in order to stay clean and sober?
- How much more therapy can I handle?
- Will we ever regain our intimacy?
- How much do my family and friends have to know about our situation?
- How can I ever make up for what I’ve put the family through?
As a supportive partner of someone recovering from substance abuse disorder, you may be asking yourself those same questions and more; why does the recovering party get all of the credit? Doesn’t anyone know how hard I have worked to keep this family together? The simple answer is no, they have no idea what has been going on, let alone what you have been feeling.
Thriveworks Charlotte counselors will work with you to identify tools and techniques that will help you heal and grow. We discuss processing resentments and re-opening the lines of true communication. This will allow you to help explain these feelings to your partner and the things they missed when they were absent from your life.
At Thriveworks Charlotte, we know firsthand what it takes to make a marriage work while recovering from substance use. We have faced all the same obstacles you are facing and we’ve learned to overcome them all. It is hard work. Don’t let anyone tell you it’s not. But it’s worth it. We can teach you about re-establishing intimacy, actually regaining the trust of your spouse, and help you with strategies to prevent relapses. Within this, you will find peace in yourself. As you begin to feel peaceful, those around you will be at peace as well.
What Will Couple’s Substance Abuse Counseling Be Like?
In traditional couple’s counseling, the couple comes to therapy together and discusses their current situation with the therapist. If they’re having disagreements over finances, the therapist will help them determine what their priorities are and how to discuss those effectively. If they’re having trouble communicating, they will be taught new techniques for effective communication. Much the same goes on during couple’s substance abuse counseling.
In couple’s substance abuse counseling, the couple will also be seen together. The therapist will ask each person to be open about what they’re feeling and experiencing. It’s likely that there are many painful feelings preventing intimacy, particularly feelings of hurt and distrust. But, with the help of talk therapy and a commitment to the relationship, those feelings can be faced and worked through.
Thriveworks Charlotte counselors know how difficult it is to ask for help—two of our counselors are a married couple whose relationship survived substance abuse. They know directly the impact that substance abuse can have on a relationship, and their goal is to help others address and overcome the pain of that impact.
The Importance of Couple’s Treatment
Studies indicate that when one or both partners in a relationship are in recovery, it’s important to seek couple’s therapy (American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy). Couple’s therapy actually increases the success rates of long term recovery, in part because the relationship becomes stronger and happier. If a relationship becomes toxic, it can create stress that drives the recovering partner back to abuse.
If you or your partner are in recovery, give us a call. A few sessions with a counselor may be just what each of you need to rebuild the bonds that have been tested by substance abuse.
Couple’s Substance Abuse Counselors in Charlotte
Kim and Matt Matone have been married for 23 years, in a relationship that has survived substance abuse. After many dark and hard days, they were able to successfully rebuild their relationship. Now, they are reaching out to others on the same path. Along with their team of counselors at Thriveworks Charlotte, they now work together to help other committed and supportive couples who wish to overcome these obstacles. They have the tools to help each of you get through the fear and anger that plague you.
We do not have a waiting list, so we can usually see you within 24 hours. It’s time to address the problems that are keeping your marriage from moving forward, and make it Thrive. We are here to help.
American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy. “Substance Abuse and Intimate Relationships.” Aamft.org