6 Signs Alcohol Is Hurting Your Relationship

6 Signs Alcohol Is Hurting Your Relationship

While 12-step programs and inpatient rehabilitation are standard options, thanks to years of research, everyone can find a solution to help them reach sobriety. Since many people with substance use disorder believe they’re healthy, an intervention can help. By communicating openly with patience and compassion, friends and family members can convey the importance of sobriety to their loved ones. They may lie to their partner or family about where they are, who they spend their time with and what they did during the day. As the addiction progresses, they may devise more elaborate excuses to hide their drinking problems.

  • However, when the intake is increased to over 30 g per day in men and 20 g in women, there is not only an increased risk of fibrosis but also an increased risk of progression to cirrhosis.
  • Alcohol can negatively impact a relationship to the point of breakup or divorce.
  • People struggling with alcohol oftentimes find themselves spending money on alcohol instead of bills or other necessities.
  • Unfortunately, when people drink more, they find that their sex drive drops dramatically.
  • This exposure has the propensity to cause problematic relationships with substances in the future, with children of individuals who abuse alcohol being four times more likely to abuse substances themselves.

Alcohol codependency occurs when a person becomes reliant on someone and their alcohol misuse hinges on their partner’s behaviors. A partner of someone addicted to alcohol may believe they’re helping the other person by enabling the addiction to continue. In reality, they’re doing it for themselves while encouraging an unhealthy dynamic. For most people, being addicted to alcohol (or any substance) means prioritizing it over the more important parts of life—even if you don’t mean to.

Treatment Options for Alcohol Abuse & Addiction

While drinking can lead to significant relationship challenges, it often doesn’t happen overnight. For this reason, it can be difficult to understand if and when your drinking has become unhealthy, especially if alcohol has played a role in your relationship for a long time. This uncertainty is sometimes described as a phenomenon known as “gray area drinking“. Infidelity is another factor that contributes to the quality of intimacy in a relationship. Not only does infidelity break the bond of trust between partners, but it can also be a contributing factor to divorce.

  • Specifically, these results indicate that the presence of highly satisfied relationships in college may help to move one further along the continuum of change regarding unhealthy behaviors such as drinking alcohol excessively.
  • You may feel like alcohol has ruined your relationship or is the cause of your divorce.
  • But for many people, it can also be a source of conflict in their relationships.

If you feel the need to be dishonest about your drinking, you may want to ask yourself why. Strong relationships are built on honesty and trust — secrecy is a red flag. While every person’s response to alcohol is different, your reaction may make your partner how does alcohol affect relationships uncomfortable. You might act inappropriately in public or appear irritable due to alcohol withdrawal. If you feel like alcohol has been affecting your relationships, consider reaching out for help so that you can be your best self for the people around you.

You Prioritize Alcohol Over Your Loved Ones

It can often be helpful for family members to learn more about alcohol use disorders and explore ways to improve their responses during interactions with someone who has a drinking problem. This may mean setting ground rules and joining a support group such as Al-Anon, designed specifically to meet the needs of families of people with alcohol use issues. One in six adults binge drinks about four times per month, consuming about seven drinks per binge.

how does alcohol affect relationships

First, hazardous drinkers may not place as much value in the health or wellbeing of their intimate relationships as nonhazardous drinkers (Epstein, McCrady, Miller, & Steinberg, 1994). This self-medication may divert attention away from the problems experienced in a dysfunctional relationship and lower the motivation to actively work toward improving it. Lastly, it may be that the presence of a dysfunctional relationship increases the desire to engage in heavier alcohol use in order to blunt or distract from unpleasant experiences (Swendsen et al., 2000). We often think about how drinking can affect our romantic relationships, but may not consider how it affects our friends and family.

Ways to Limit Alcohols Effects on Your Relationships

When your partner struggles with an alcohol use disorder (AUD), it impacts the entire family unit as well as the day-to-day functioning of the household. For example, if you abandon important roles and responsibilities as a result of alcohol misuse, family members are left to pick up the slack and take on extra household, childcare, and financial responsibilities as a result. The impact of alcohol on relationships is widespread and can affect every single relationship a person is a part of. From intimacy problems and lack of emotional availability to the financial burden and negative effects on children, alcohol use disorder can affect partners, their children and other family members.

how does alcohol affect relationships

So, the alcohol builds up quite quickly,” explains addiction psychiatrist Akhil Anand, MD. Contact our team today to learn more about all the different levels of care and how to get your best relationships back on track. Someone with substance use issues often becomes secretive and takes more care to protect their privacy. They may become less talkative or more suspicious when people ask them questions. They may be wary others are trying to get information out of them, and may spend more time alone, choosing not to divulge where they’ve been or what they have been doing.

Engage in More Activities That Don’t Involve Alcohol

The majority of people are acutely aware of the long-term and very damaging effects alcoholism has on the body, but not many know that just as much damage can be done to relationships as well. The fact that alcoholism has a simultaneous destructive effect on physical and mental health and (committed and intimate) relationships is what makes it so different from other chronic health conditions. Healthy relationships often involve healthy sex lives, and in the most stable relationships, people are usually on the same page about how often they want to be having sex. Unfortunately, when people drink more, they find that their sex drive drops dramatically.