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Medically Reviewed

How to Save Your Marriage When a Spouse is in Rehab

- 8 sections

Medically Verified: 2/1/24

Medical Reviewer

Chief Editor


All of the information on this page has been reviewed and verified by a certified addiction professional.

Drug and alcohol addiction affects all the aspects of who you are: your body, your mind, your relationships, and your ability to work toward goals in the future. It is a complex condition with many deep-reaching roots in your emotions, experiences, and physical health.

Addiction can strain even your most loving and important relationships. The strain addiction puts on your marriage may be one of the things driving you to seek treatment. Comprehensive addiction treatment can give you the treatment, skills, and support you need to heal from addiction and move forward into a healthier future.

So, can going to rehab save your marriage? This article will explore how addiction can put distance between you and your spouse and how seeking treatment may help you heal your marriage. Reach out to the Carolina Center for Recovery team for more information about starting treatment or to find support at any stage of recovery.

How Does Addiction Affect Your Marriage?

Using drugs and alcohol repeatedly can lead to dependence and addiction. Once you have developed a dependence on drugs and alcohol, it can be nearly impossible to stop using them on your own. Most people require comprehensive treatment and ongoing support to leave an addiction behind.

Addiction is a multifaceted issue–it’s more than just a physical disease. Its impact can be felt by not only the person living with it but the people in their lives as well.

Drug and alcohol addiction can quickly become the center of a person’s life. They may do whatever it takes–including lying and stealing–to get more drugs or alcohol. People with addiction may stop caring about their hobbies, responsibilities, and relationships. They may break promises, act in uncaring ways, or become deceitful to their life partners.

Some of the other ways addiction affects marriage include:

  • Causing a breakdown of communication between spouses
  • Experiencing life-altering financial or legal consequences
  • New or worsening domestic abuse

Addiction rarely resolves on its own. People with addiction must seek treatment as soon as possible to avoid worsening consequences to their health, safety, and relationships.

Can Going to Rehab Save My Marriage?

If you live with addiction, your marriage may be in jeopardy unless you seek the treatment you need to recover. If your spouse is addicted to drugs or alcohol, you can support their journey by helping your spouse start a rehab program and encouraging them throughout recovery.

Here are some of the most significant things that may improve if an addicted spouse goes to rehab.


Comprehensive addiction treatment doesn’t just treat the physical aspects of addiction–it provides treatment for the whole person, including emotional support and mental health therapies. Individual, group, and family therapy are crucial aspects of rehab. With the help of a professional therapist, people in recovery learn how to communicate more effectively and get to the emotional root of issues that can disrupt relationships. If your spouse goes to rehab, they may offer couples or marriage counseling to improve communication between the two of you.


An addicted person’s spouse often spends a lot of time and energy worrying about their partner, covering up for their behaviors, and carrying the weight of the relationship in many ways. When the addicted person finally seeks treatment, their spouse can finally relax and breathe easily for the first time in a long time. The addicted person may also experience relief at knowing they are taking steps toward a healthier future.  As time goes on, the addicted person’s values, personality, and behaviors begin to return to the way they were before. This sense of relief can feel refreshing and energizing–and very motivating to keep going.


Tension can build as an addicted partner blows through savings accounts to fund their substance abuse. Going to rehab can mean learning new ways to stay sober for life and allows addicted people to break the cycle of reckless spending–and save their marriages.


Living with addiction often means keeping secrets, lying, stealing, and other deceitful behaviors that put tremendous strain on a marriage. It’s almost impossible to have a healthy marriage when one partner is addicted. The focus of a person’s life shifts from their marriage to the addiction–and they stop caring about hurting their partner. Rehab can help people put addiction behind them and restore trust in their marriage.

Do I Need Addiction Treatment?

It can sometimes be challenging to determine if you or a loved one needs treatment to overcome drug and alcohol addiction. Recognizing the signs of addiction can help you get the treatment you need.

Here are some questions you can ask yourself to determine if you or someone you love need to go to rehab.

  • Do you want to stop drinking or using drugs but can’t do it on your own?
  • Do you need to use more of the substance to get the same effects?
  • Have you experienced legal, financial, or health-related consequences because of your substance use?
  • If you stop using the substance, do you experience withdrawal symptoms?
  • Do you keep using drugs and alcohol even though you’ve experienced negative consequences?
  • Have you neglected your relationships, hobbies, or responsibilities because of substance use?

If you answered yes to some of these questions, you may require help to stop using drugs or alcohol. Don’t wait for a problem to get worse–seek treatment as soon as you can.

Find Help Now

You don’t have to carry the weight of drug and alcohol addiction alone. Find the support and treatment you or your spouse needs to save your marriage. Help is just a phone call away. Contact the team at the Carolina Center for Recovery today to explore your treatment options.