If you drink regularly, have you considered how your drinking may impact your relationships and family members? Many of us tend to glaze over the situation until the problem becomes too difficult to control. When you develop an alcohol addiction, the consequences on your relationships can be damaging. As we answer the question, “is alcohol impacting relationships?” we’re going to specifically examine the effect alcohol can have on relationships with different family members as well as what signs to look for that there may be a problem. We’ll also share some information on how alcohol rehab in Arizona can help if you’re dealing with a substance use disorder.
How Alcohol Impacts Relationships
Alcohol can impact a variety of relationships in different ways. From marriages to friendships to relationships with our children, the impact can be detrimental when we are involved in heavy drinking that leads to substance use disorders.
Alcohol and Romantic Relationships
Studies show that alcohol use is common in marriages. One survey by the University at Buffalo indicates that 25% of couples have a husband who drinks regularly while the wife does not.1 The same survey found that only 5% of couples have a wife who drinks regularly when the husband does not. This study defines regular alcohol use as drinking once per month.
There is often less marital satisfaction in marriages where heavy drinking occurs and there is a substance use disorder. If you binge drink or are a heavy drinker, you may have less time for your partner, resulting in an unhappy marriage. Trust issues may also arise due to heavy drinking.
Alcohol can also impact the intimacy factor in a relationship. One study found that half of the men surveyed with alcohol dependence also had sexual dysfunction,2 compared to only 1/5 of those in a control group.
Alcohol and Domestic Violence
It’s also important to look at the impact alcohol can have on domestic violence when answering the question, “is alcohol impacting relationships?” According to the World Health Organization, alcohol use increases the risk of intimate partner violence.3 It can impact your reasoning skills and reduce your self-control.
In the United States alone, 55% of victims of intimate partner violence believed that their partner was drinking before their assault. Aggressive behavior and domestic violence by men toward women dominate versus violence by women toward men.
Alcohol and Children
The impact alcohol use can have on children is one that cannot be overlooked. Research by the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry shows that 1 in every 5 adults lived with a relative who abused drugs or alcohol during their adolescence.
Alcohol use can lead adults to neglect or abuse their children. Children may also notice behavioral changes in their family members who are under the influence and believe they are to blame. This can lead to feelings of guilt, frustration, and anger.
Not only can alcohol use impact children if a parent is neglecting or abusing them as a result, but studies show that children with a strong family history of alcohol use disorder are at higher risk for developing substance use issues later in life. 4
Alcohol and Friendships
Alcohol can also impact your friendships. You may begin to ignore friends who don’t support your addiction or those who start to show concern for your addiction. If you begin to surround yourself with those who drink heavily, chances are you will continue to follow in their paths. Finding friends who support treatment programs instead can lead you to a path of sobriety rather than continuous drinking.
Is Alcohol Impacting Relationships? 5 Signs to Look For
Now that we know how alcohol can impact relationships, it’s important to know what signs to look for that there may be a problem.
1. Your Partner Says You’re a Different Person When You Drink
Often when people drink heavily, they act differently than when they don’t. Their behaviors can become uncharacteristic and unrecognizable. This may lead you to have more arguments with your partner.
2. Alcohol is the Focus of Your Activities
If more of your relationships center around alcohol, it may impact your relationships. This is especially true if your partner does not drink.
3. You Begin Lying About Your Alcohol Use
When your partner suspects you are lying about your alcohol use, it can lead to trust issues within your relationship. If your partner feels as though they can’t trust you, your relationship will suffer.
4. You Begin Binge Drinking
If you engage in binge drinking, it can impair your decisions and cause problems in your relationships. According to the Centers for Disease Control, binge drinking is defined as having more than five drinks in one sitting for men and more than four drinks in one sitting for women. 5
5. Drinking is Causing Financial Difficulties
Many couples disagree about finances. When your drinking is impacting your finances, it can impact your relationship by causing more conflicts.
Get Help at an Alcohol Rehab in Arizona
If alcohol is impacting your relationships, it’s time to get help from Silver Sands Recovery. As an alcohol rehab in Arizona, we can help you if you have a substance abuse disorder with alcohol. We offer a variety of treatment programs to help you get on the path to sobriety. Call us or reach out to us online to learn more about how our customized programs can begin helping you today.
About the author:
Lisa Waknin is the Founder and Director of Silver Sands Recovery, located in Prescott, Arizona. Lisa started Silver Sands Recovery after immersing herself in the addiction treatment world for several years to figure out what could be done differently to help her daughter and others like her to overcome addiction and stay sober. She believes in a hands-on treatment approach, which includes taking someone out of their environment, providing a 90-day program in a structured environment. During treatment, clients not only recover physically but also learn to live their life again. Lisa is a sought-after expert speaker for recovery support groups, charities, schools, communities, and companies wanting to educate themselves on the explosion of opiate and heroin abuse in our country and the best way to understand, treat, and beat it.