The internet has no shortage of 20 question surveys designed to help people diagnose their alcoholism, or the alcoholism of the people they love. In our experience, those surveys are a waste of time. If you want to know if your loved one is suffering from alcoholism, there are only two questions you need to ask.
- Does your spouse think or talk about alcohol when he or she is not drinking – either anticipation of the next drinking session or regret from the last one?
- Is alcohol causing problems in your life and relationship?
If you answered, “yes,” to those two questions, your situation is far likelier to deteriorate than it is to ever improve, until your spouse stops drinking. Alcoholism is a progressive disease. It can only get worse. Once alcohol has become a problem, there is no moderating.
The destructive grip of alcoholism reaches far beyond the alcoholic. The disease poisons the lives of the loved ones of heavy drinkers, and makes their recovery a necessity. Whether the drinker finds sobriety or not – whether the relationship survives or not – recovery is essential to the mental and emotional healing of anyone who loves an alcoholic.
Abstinence isn’t a cure. Neither is ending the relationship. Why can’t you run away from the painful aftermath of alcoholism?
Sobriety doesn’t fix anything.
The pain inflicted in an alcoholic relationship doesn’t diminish over time, and healing doesn’t come without effort. Sheri and Matt Salis have lived with the trauma of his active alcoholism, and faced the unexpected reality of continued turmoil once he found permanent sobriety. Together, they have found healing for themselves and their marriage. Now, they are sharing the painful lessons because no one can survive the process alone.
In their Spouse’s Guide to Alcoholism Recovery, Sheri and Matt address all the hurtful issues:
- Learn to blame the disease, not the drinker.
- Elusiveness of forgiveness.
- Brain chemistry of alcoholism.
- Learning to trust again.
- Different paces of recovery for drinkers vs. loved ones.
- Rebuilding intimacy.
- Necessity of connection for recovery.
We offer our guide to alcoholism recovery here for free. Who should read our story? Don’t let the title fool you. While most alcoholic marriages feature a husband who abuses alcohol and a wife who suffers, our experiences offer empathy and a roadmap for anyone who loves an alcoholic. Even if the relationship has not survived – regardless of sexual orientation – even if you are a parent, adult child, sibling or friend – alcoholism doesn’t discriminate in the completeness of its destruction. If your life has been impacted by loving an alcoholic, we urge you to read our free guide.
We’ve been telling our story and helping people for years now, because this is the kind of information we wish we’d been able to find when we needed to recover. If you let us email you our guide, we promise to protect your information. We’ll never sell or share your name or email address. Alcoholism recovery is all about trust, and we want to earn yours.