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Drug Addiction Treatment for Couples

Discover how couples addiction treatment can help treat addiction and strengthen relationships and wellness.

What Is Couples Addiction Treatment?

Drug use has caused significant damage to both unmarried and married couples over the years, with only a fraction of affected couples knowing how to seek addiction treatment. Although, research has shown that couples reduce their drug use within the first four years of marriage, one study found that 21% of husbands and 16% of wives continued to abuse drugs.[1]

Couples addiction treatment entails the whole package of interventions to assist couples in ending their drug dependence and living better lives.

Understanding Couples’ Addiction Treatment

Couples addiction treatment involves several approaches and methods geared toward ensuring each party gets healing. In addition, couples addiction programs encourage both parties to derive support from each other. Just like killing two birds with one stone, this collaboration aims to foster the bond of friendship and achieve both individual and collective healing.

The Benefits of Couples Addiction Treatment

Often, couples addiction treatments happen just in time to save marriages and relationships from imminent collapse. Through couples addiction treatment, spouses with drug use disorders can repair seemingly helpless relationships and prevent their kids from experiencing the challenges of broken homes.

How Does Drug Addiction Affect Couples’ Relationships?

Several areas of the relationship are affected by substance abuse as the gulf between partners progressively widens. For example, a spouse who suffers from substance use disorder will typically focus their attention on satisfying their cravings for the drug, depriving their partner of love, care, and affection. 

Signs of Substance Abuse in Couples

Several signs accompany substance abuse in couples. Four of the most common signs are:

  • Financial Issues: Couples begin to spend heavily on drugs to satisfy their cravings. As a result, many couples go into debt to maintain a steady supply of medication.
  • Social Problems: Couples generally separate themselves from their previous social life and find it difficult to sustain healthy social interactions.
  • Behavioral Signs: Couples exhibit unusual behavior such as frequent irritation, anger, and isolation. In some cases, anger may result in domestic violence.
  • Other Warning Signs: Other warning signs include constant fights and arguments between couples or covering for each other by explaining absences and negligence. In addition, couples will look unkempt and shabby in appearance.

What Is Addressed and Taught in Couples Addiction Treatment?

Couples therapy for addiction identifies and improves issues in the relationship by addressing the problems and teaching helpful tools.

Addiction treatment for couples should address and focus on the following relationship challenges:

Trust Issues

A history of addiction-related errant behavior can damage the trust of one’s partner.


One partner is often left with a load of responsibility towards the other experiencing substance use disorder. This also involves covering for a partner who suffers from substance use disorders.

Intimate Partner Violence

Drug addiction can lead to violence. When a person with substance use disorder is in a relationship, their partner can become the object of this violence. 

Arguments About Substance Use

The couple may begin to confront each other about their substance use disorder. The person with substance use disorder will usually take a defensive stance, resulting in heated arguments. 

Helpful Tools to Be Accessed in the Couple’s Addiction Recovery

Some of the proven tools that are necessary for relationship building during addiction treatment for couples include the following:

  • Effective Communication: Effective communication techniques encourage couples to confide in each other. 
  • Handling Finances: This step helps couples work toward developing a plan that encourages financial responsibility. 
  • Cooperative Decision-Making and Consideration: Here, therapists will encourage both parties to regard and significantly consider the opinion of the other before making decisions.  
  • Managing and Expressing Emotions: Couples will fare better when they can build on emotional intelligence.  
  • Codependency and Enabling Behaviors: Couples addiction recovery must address the challenge of codependency and any behaviors that are counter-productive to the recovery process. Partners must give their quota to make addiction recovery and the relationship work.
  • Boundary Setting and Accountability: Another sign of a healthy and successful couple's addiction recovery is the respect for boundaries. Couples must develop an accountability system to help guide their actions.

How Does Couples Addiction Treatment Work?

Addiction treatment for couples requires several approaches to achieve complete and sustainable results. Below are the common and essential components of any couples addiction treatment program.

Individual Counseling

It is sometimes necessary to hear from each partner individually. An individual interaction will encourage couples to open up about their struggles. Couples may opt to speak alone or alongside their partners.

Group Counseling

Group counseling involves bringing multiple couples together to share their experiences and strengthen one another.  

Self-Help Support Groups

Self-help support groups include multiple couples with addiction challenges who voluntarily come together to strengthen and encourage one another. During each session, couples receive advice and opinions from other couples in handling their addiction battles. These groups are a popular and effective option, with an estimated 18% of people in the U.S. utilizing this strategy at some point in their lives.[2]

Behavioral Couples Therapy (BCT)

Behavioral couples therapy  (BCT) is a popular treatment method for couples struggling with addiction. Through observation of the couple's behavior, the therapists will spot faulty behavior and devise ways to help the couples outgrow them.

Medication-Assisted Treatment (MAT)

Evidence shows that medication-assisted treatment (MAT) is effective in treating substance use disorder, sustaining recovery, and preventing or reducing opioid drug overdose. MAT combines counseling and behavioral therapies with medication to help treat couples with substance use disorders.

The Food and Drug Association (FDA) approves all medications provided through this program. A popular medication used for couples addiction recovery is naloxone.[3]

Recovering Couples Anonymous (RCA)

Recovering couples anonymous (RCA) has been a helpful tool in addiction treatment for couples. This support group runs the famous 12-Step program to help couples rise above addiction.

Couples Sober Living

Typically, the longer couples have faced addiction challenges, the longer it will take to recover. This is the reason why couples' sober living is crucial. Sober living homes help couples recover from the era of substance use disorder by teaching and implementing healthier lifestyles and removing them from toxic environments. Sober living homes operate on rules that aim to achieve total intolerance of drug use.

One study found that Options Recovery Services (ORS), housing provided to people in outpatient programs who do not have a stable living environment, improved substance use disorder outcomes by 68%. In addition, Clean and Sober Transitional Living (CSTL), housing provided to people working to live a sober life, improved outcomes by 45%.[4]

Drug Addiction Treatment for Couples in California

While couples rehab centers recommend and administer the proper addiction treatment for couples, it is the job of couples to seek help and work toward healing.

Couples Addiction Treatment

Couples Addiction Treatment

Can Couples Go to a Drug Addiction Rehab Center Together?

Couples can attend addiction rehab centers together, even when only one has a substance use disorder. It is important for couples to learn how to spend time together without using drugs, and a great way to achieve this is through inpatient drug rehab for couples.

Does Insurance Cover Couples Addiction Treatment?

Insurance will only cover couples addiction treatment when it is required to address a mental illness. So, unless at least one partner meets diagnostic criteria for a mental health disorder, health insurance providers cannot cover couples rehab per the Affordable Care Act, Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act, and other federal laws.  

Find Drug Addiction Treatment for Couples at Genesis Recovery

Amid numerous couples addiction rehab centers, there is a challenge with finding a center that provides comprehensive services. Fortunately, with Genesis Recovery, your search is over. Genesis Recovery is a trusted facility offering extensive couples rehab California services.  

We provide a range of services such as detox for couples, outpatient care, and behavioral couples therapy. The center also runs inpatient drug rehab for couples who face severe addiction challenges and require twenty-four-seven support and careContact Genesis Recovery now to get help in overcoming addiction and saving your relationship. 


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