Military wives carry such a heavy load — and it’s even heavier when addiction is in the mix. When your husband is struggling with drugs and alcohol, it can feel like you are alone even within your military community. No matter how dark it may seem, though, there is hope on the horizon and support for military wives with addicted loved ones.
As a military wife, you probably already know how powerful it can be to share your experience with people who are going through the same thing as you. There’s nothing quite like the support of other people who’ve been there — and made it through. That’s why military wives with an addicted loved one can benefit from involvement in support groups like Al-Anon.
What is Al-Anon?
Al-Anon is a free support group for people whose lives have been affected by a loved one’s drinking or drug use. Like Alcoholics Anonymous, Al-Anon protects the anonymity of its members, meaning what you say in each meeting stays in the meeting. It also uses the 12 Steps as a program of recovery, but nothing in Al-Anon is mandatory.
Most meetings last about an hour and include readings, discussion, and time for fellowship. You can review Al-Anon meetings near you HERE and if at first you aren’t impressed, try another one. Every Al-Anon meeting is different, and you’re certain to find one that’s right for you.
You might be wondering, is my husband an alcoholic? Does my husband need rehab? Is his drinking or drug use really bad enough for me to go to Al-Anon? The answer is, any amount of substance abuse is “enough” if it is affecting your life in a negative way. There is no cut-off for membership and if you are feeling the impact of your husband’s drinking, you deserve to get support. Even if your husband is not willing to admit his problem and get help, you can get help for yourself and for your family.
How Families Heal from Alcoholism
Addiction is a family disease, in that it harms everyone in the family and not just the individual drinking or using. You already know how it makes you feel. If you have children, you might not be aware of how deeply your husband’s drinking or using is hurting them. The road to healing your family starts with yourself.
Al-Anon is a great place to start your journey. You’ll learn strategies for coping with life in an addicted home, and what you can do to find your own serenity. You also may want to pursue counseling or therapy. Finally, if your loved one is ready to enter residential addiction treatment, you’ll find that reputable treatment centers often offer family programming to help the family heal alongside their loved one.
Getting Help for Alcoholism in Families
In Al-Anon, you learn that there’s only so much you can really do to help someone with a substance abuse problem — if you didn’t know that already. Threats, tears, pleas, and interventions only go so far. If you’re willing, though, to open up the conversation with your loved one, give our team a call. We’ll listen to your situation and give you strategies that could help your loved one get closer to the road of recovery.