How Spousal Addiction Affects Marriages and Leads to Divorce
There are many ways that addiction can affect a marriage.
Drug, alcohol, pornography or gambling addiction can sabotage trust. Trust is the foundation of any good relationship. Addiction, in general, could lead to making poor choices, risky behaviors, diminished communication, lack of attention to personal and business affairs, and sometimes even extra-marital affairs. Once trust is damaged, it is often harder to get it back. Damages done by drug-related, alcohol-related or deviant behaviors that usually override the addicted spouse’s family obligations.
The addicted person becomes more self-serving in order to feed his or her addiction by any means necessary, therefore maintaining balance and reciprocation in the marriage is not present or often much skewed. The non-addicted spouse is left to pick up the pieces of his or her partner’s bad behaviors and bad choices and will feel neglected and abandoned over time. The burden of taking the entire family often falls on the non-addicted spouse’s shoulder, bearing the weight of their addicted spouse’s self-serving behavior.
Drug or alcohol addiction also can affect the addicted spouse’s mood and can and often makes the addict violent toward others and lash out at their family. The drug or alcohol induced spouse can exhibit aggression, usually when intoxication levels and frequency increase. There is a strong link between drug and alcohol addiction and domestic violence. When children are present in the home, the risk of harm to them is very prevalent. Also, many times there can be an underlying mental illness or condition that may be at the root of the addicted spouse’s addiction.
“The first step that an at-risk family with addiction problems should take is to seek professional help,” said Gerald A. Maggio from The Maggio Law Firm, a family law practice based in Irvine, CA. “All marriages that have addiction problems cannot realistically be saved; therefore, protecting families from emotional and physical harm is a priority and becomes a societal concern.”
Rehabilitation centers provide support such as therapy and support groups for the whole family dealing with addiction, even when marriages end; it is suggested to seek or continue rehab, especially when children are involved. This can help both parties can cope better and the whole family can heal and move forward, even after a divorce.
For more information or to schedule a consultation with Orange County divorce lawyer Gerald Maggio, contact The Maggio Law Firm by calling (949) 553-0304 or visiting https://www.maggiolawfirm.com/.
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