Divorcing an Alcoholic: Grounds for Divorce, No-Fault States & Child Custody

Kitson GC, Sussman MB. Marital complaints, demographic characteristics, and symptoms of mental distress in divorce. Hall JH, Fals-Stewart W, Fincham FD. Risky sexual behavior among married alcoholic men. Haber JR, Jacob T. Marital interactions of male versus female alcoholics. Fu H, Goldman N. The association between health-related behaviours and the risk of divorce in the USA. Children experience devastating outcomes when both parents are facing AUD issues. Marilyn Spiller is a writer, sober coach, recovery advocate, and student of the world .

How many marriages end in divorce because of alcoholism

Although cheating shouldn’t be blamed on alcohol, research shows that problem drinking predicts higher rates of sex outside of the relationship. Drinking can lead to poorer decision-making in the moment, and can also lead to lowered relationship satisfaction through each of the factors above.

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To our knowledge, the present study was the first to investigate the effects of divorce on change in mental health in couples where at least one of the spouses had a risky consumption of alcohol prior to the divorce. We hypothesized that the mental health of high risk users would worsen after the divorce, whereas the mental health of the individuals divorcing high risk users could either improve or worsen after the divorce. The results showed that female high-risk users and men divorcing female high-risk users had a significantly higher increase in mental health problems post divorce, compared to female divorced low risk users and their spouses. A similar trend was seen for men with a risky consumption of alcohol. Although the effects were only significant in couples where the woman drank heavily, low statistical power makes us unable to conclude in regards to a true gender difference. The observed similar tendencies for men who drink heavily in fact suggest that there may be similar increased, and perhaps long-lasting effects in both genders.

Is alcoholism a reason for divorce?

Again, the short answer is yes. People that suffer from alcoholism become cloaked in the disease, and the person you fell in love with is gone. Alcoholism is progressive, and will get worse over time. As the addiction gets worse, the circumstances will change and you may need to leave the situation for your own happiness, safety, and the safety and happiness of your children. The decision is very personal and up to each individual.

Call us today to speak to one of our compassionate and expert team and take the first steps to a family life free from drug and alcohol abuse. Sometimes, alcohol abuse and relationship problems can form a ‘destructive cycle’ where unhealthy drinking leads to relationship problems, creating stress and emotional turmoil, which encourages further alcohol abuse. Couples therapy aims to intervene and turn the destructive cycle into a constructive one, where supportive relationships lead to increased abstinence and so on. If you or someone you love is struggling with substance abuse and addiction, and your marriage is suffering because of it, finding the right addiction recovery program can offer your marriage a chance at surviving. Leading St. Louis area rehab Harris House has been providing customized addiction treatment programs for more than 50 years. In some cases, the negative effects of alcohol abuse on marriages can be severe. Multiple studies2have found a relationship between alcohol abuse and violence within marriages.

Divorcing an Alcoholic

The spouse has given the person with alcohol use disorder numerous opportunities to change, but they continue to refuse treatment. If alcohol starts to make a person unreliable, this can also bleed into their work. They may frequently call in sick because of hangovers, show up late, or not at all. And if they are impaired on the job, they may even https://ecosoberhouse.com/ put coworkers in danger. If a partner loses their job or makes less money because of a drinking problem, this affects the family finances, which puts additional strain on the relationship. While intoxication can sometimes increase sexual desire in the moment, it can also decrease vaginal lubrication, and increase chances of erectile dysfunction.

  • Missing values for MH1 were reduced from 6.2% to 0.9% for the men and from 9.6% to 1.1% for the women.
  • Once you make the decision to file for divorce, the next decision you need to make is how much of an issue you want to make of your spouse’s alcoholism.
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  • Dr. Jessica Salvatore, lead author of the 2016 study, said genetic factors accounted for about 50 percent of the link between divorce and the disease.
  • The other extreme example is one where the alcohol abusing parent does not suffer in a debilitating capacity but is rather capable of earning income.
  • Although the effects were only significant in couples where the woman drank heavily, low statistical power makes us unable to conclude in regards to a true gender difference.

Also, take advantage of Legal aid or online Legal help from Legalzoom.com. Do not try to go through divorcing an alcoholic without at least contacting someone in the legal field and finding out what your best options are. Alcoholism can be a vicious circle in a marriage and it often leads to divorce. If we are living in that awful space of being married to someone who is abusing alcohol, we eventually find ourselves searching for resources about alcoholism and divorce.

What Happens When Both Spouses Abuse Alcohol?

Family involvement in treatment has been shown to be an important component in supporting recovery. This involves not just addressing the drinking and/or drug use, but also the problems within the relationship. Explains the AAMFT, “If the issues in the relationship are not treated, they can set the stage for continued conflict and, in turn, relapse to drinking or drug use.

  • Children experience worse outcomes when both parents are heavy drinkers than when one partner drinks heavily.
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  • The baseline mental health scores are particularly poor for the to-be-divorced high-risk users .
  • If a partner loses their job or makes less money because of a drinking problem, this affects the family finances, which puts additional strain on the relationship.

Additionally, serious dependence can lead to life-threatening withdrawal symptoms including convulsions, starting eight to twelve hours after the last drink. The delirium tremens (D.T.’s) begins three to four days later where the marriage after sobriety person becomes extremely agitated, shakes, hallucinates and loses touch with reality. When you are living with an alcoholic, it can lead to situations that are stressful and frustrating, weighing heavy on your relationship.

Divorcing an alcoholic who no longer abuses alcohol versus one who does

For example, if they used a significant portion of marriage funds to support their alcohol addiction. The same is true for their right to spousal support; if they have used an unfair amount of assets to purchase alcohol, their spousal support payments might be reduced. You should always speak to a child custody attorney for their advice and opinions. The courts will always look at the child’s best interests when making any child custody arrangements. When one partner is an alcoholic, the courts will always favor the non-alcoholic parent.

How many marriages end in divorce because of alcoholism

During National Recovery Month, we’re taking a moment to understand the impact that addiction can have on a relationship by looking at some surprising addiction and divorce statistics. This website’s content is solely for residents of California or residents of the United States or Canada who have a family law matter in California. We do not consult with nor represent any person who is located outside of North America.