Maybe your husband or loved one is exhibiting questionable behavior related to alcohol, and it doesn't feel right. Know that you are not alone. 12.7% of American adults have an alcohol use disorder, colloquially known as alcoholism. We’re going to talk about signs you’re in a relationship with an addict, as well as strategies to cope and heal.
Where is the line of becoming a problem?
Alcoholism is not about how often he drinks, it’s about what happens when he drinks. If he can control it and enjoy it at the same time, that is the norm. If he cannot control it and enjoy it at the same time, that is the disease.
Common Signs You are with an Addict
Addiction is a progressive disease, and symptoms may increase with time. If you partner shows one or more of these signs, chances are you are with someone who has the disease of addiction.
- Cannot leave an alcoholic beverage glass empty
- Drinks until he blacks out or passes out
- Does not stick to intended drink limits
- Hiding liquor
- Being dishonest
- Neglecting responsibilities and hobbies
- Denies his behavior is problematic
- Drinking in the morning
- Withdrawal symptoms
- Shaking- especially the hands, trouble sleeping, irritability, sweating, nausea, anxiety, depression
Ultimately, the best sign may be your gut feeling. Additionally, substance use disorders nearly always have co-occurring issues, such as depression, anxiety, stress, co-dependence, trauma, behavioral issues, and other addictions.
What You Can Do
If you feel your husband may be an alcoholic, you are not alone, and there are many resources available to help you navigate this experience. Also, know that once an authentic active recovery stage is reached, individuals are motivated to constantly work on themselves, to help those around them, to cultivate a strong spiritual connection, and are committed to growth. This typically comes after an initial turning point, once support meetings are attended regularly. For earlier stages, we will cover resources including counseling, residential treatment, music therapy, interventions, support groups.
Every person goes through challenging seasons, and therapy is a beneficial solution to help navigate difficult times, and process stress in a healthy way. There is no shame in seeing a professional counselor or therapist. Mainstream society is recently adopting the concept that mental and emotional health are equally important as physical health.
It is important to find a professional who specializes in addiction rather than a generic doctor, therapist, or counselor. They may specialize in couples or family counseling, but confirm addiction is part of their specialty before booking an appointment.
Seeking treatment may seem overwhelming, though the consequences of an untreated substance use disorder are not worth the risk of postponing treatment. With the progression of addiction, consequences include depreciation of physical health including organ damage, self-isolation and loss of relationships and wellness, and the intensification of co-occurring issues such as depression and anxiety, which too often leads to the unimaginable. When it comes to seeking treatment to heal addiction, the sooner the better.
When an individual has lived with a substance use disorder for years, their habits and mindset are often set in negative, dysfunctional patterns, and residential treatment is the most effective way to rewire to a positive, upward path. When an individual is growing in a serene and supportive environment, surrounded by professionals who understand what they are going through, and offer multiple techniques to move forward in the healing process, they are given the physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual tools they need to sustain an enjoyable life of sobriety.
Soberman’s Estate takes pride in teaching men how to live a better life for the rest of their life. Complimentary confidential consultations are available with our Admissions Director, who can be reached at 480-595-2222. You can also email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
“One of my jobs as a music therapist is to use music to restore and enhance the ability of one person to connect with another. We know from research and brain scans that the human brain changes drastically after years of addiction. We become more adapted to protect, survive, and resist the love of others,” said Steve Inganamort, a Music Therapist at Soberman’s Estate.
“The musical experience is one of the most complex, powerful experiences known to mankind. It is the only experience that activates the entire brain. It is the key to strengthening the processes that involve connection, love, understanding, and empathy. As addiction has the potential to harm our neural biology involved in connecting and relating, music has the potential to restore it. When we use music intentionally, our defenses tend to subside, and we experience gratification with openness. This is due to various reasons. The nitric oxide dilating our blood vessels, the serotonin waves that come with our favorite song, and the potential alpha brain waves all play a role in this openness.”
Mr. Inganamort recommends a book called the Tao of Music: Sound Psychology by John M. Ortiz. He says, “This book provides guidance on using playlists, practices, and experiences to nurture this restoration and openness. While a book may not be a substitute for the richness of a music therapy session, it may be helpful and illuminating for recovering addicts. It describes the ‘iso principle,’ a technique of arranging music to alter mood, living in the “hear and now,” and supporting healthy companionship with mutual listening.”
Music therapy is just one of many alternative therapeutic modalities offered at Soberman’s Estate, a luxury drug and alcohol rehab for men in Arizona.
Intervention is a step loved ones can take to help the individual with addiction “wake up.” This process includes hiring a professional to coordinate an environment and scripting for a conversation which accentuates the urgency of the individual changing their path, how to change the path, and if all goes well, will conclude with the individual going into a detoxification center or rehabilitation center.
Read more about interventions here.
There are many communal support groups for individuals with substance use disorders and their loved ones. The most available being AA (Alcoholics Anonymous). There are anonymous meetings for each substance one could be addicted to, such as pills, marijuana, narcotics, and more. These (AA, PA, MA, NA, etc.) build community and sobriety with a foundation of the 12-step program.
There are also many non-12 step alternatives, such as Refuge Recovery, SMART Recovery, Celebrate Recovery, etc. Some groups cater to specific populations, while some are more general, and each has their own method to recovery, though they are similar to each other.
Soberman’s Estate helps men recover from all substance use disorders, other addictions, and co-occurring issues, though specializes in programming for those addicted to alcohol and/or opioids. Soberman’s Estate supports both 12-step and non-12-step methods.
If you yourself do not have the disease of addiction, but suffer from the choices of a loved one with the disease, Al-Anon is a fitting group to reach out to. Al-Anon is by and for people worried about someone with a drinking problem. Al-Anon meetings are offered frequently in all areas.