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Online Support Offers Aid To Spouses Of Addicts

Support is one of the most important things to an addict overcoming an addiction, but what some people don’t realize is how much the family of an addict requires help as well. In fact, new research supports the theory that online support for the partners of addicts may help keep families together, assist the spouse and family to cope better, and in relation, help the addict to ease back into their family life more naturally with less worry of resentment from their partner. Medical News Today explains: “Researchers at the University at Buffalo Research Institute on Addictions (RIA) found that women with alcoholic partners who face barriers to seeking help may benefit from an Internet-based, interactive support program.”

These support programs offer online counseling, interesting articles on overcoming obstacles, and how to better support your spouse or partner during their rehabilitation process. It can also help in family situations to better focus energy on things that can be changes rather than trying to force change into situations that need to be resolved on their own.

Statistics Speak The Truth

With roughly 7.7 million American women facing alcoholism in a spouse or partner, this new method of coping couldn’t have come soon enough. Living with an alcoholic partner can lead to high levels of stress, anxiety, and psychological trauma over a long period of time. It can be a challenge for some to get out of bed in the morning and face their partner, life, and family, working regularly to improve things that cannot be changed by any one thing in their day to day life. Science Daily provides: “RIA researchers developed a self-paced, Internet-administered coping skills training program to determine if it could be an effective way to help reduce distress in this frequently underserved population.”

The RIA research team found a way to implement an online training program for families undergoing this kind of psychological distress through marriage or partnership with an alcoholic. It offers constructive courses and training in how to handle certain situations, how to find stability at home, and how to deal with the problems that surface. The program was offered to 100 participants who lived with alcoholic spouses, and watched as animated narratives of dramatizations, instructions, and coping methods were offered. There were also live coaches who were certified as counselors ready to chat to those who required it. The University at Buffalo reports: “The program is not yet available to the public. RIA researchers are seeking additional funding to evaluate it on a larger scale, and are determining the best delivery method — through social service agencies, treatment programs or health care providers, or as a standalone for women to access themselves.”

Currently, this RIA program is not available to the public, but as more funding because available it may become a future tool which can be used in the support of families coping with alcoholism in their homes. While this program has yet to be released to all Americans, there are many support websites available for spouses and families of alcoholics and addicts, offering similar coaching and counseling from professionals who want to help families better cope with the everyday stress that accompanies this lifestyle.

Getting Help

Alcoholism is not a disease that can be cured, but is an ongoing disorder that requires constant attention from the affected. For some families, even the period after an alcoholic has successful quit can be filled with anxiety and the worry that old habits will return. Spouses who find themselves undergoing constant stress and strain due to these worries should seek counseling from a doctor or professional counselor outside of online programs and websites as well.

Every person is different, which means that some families may require more help than others to stabilize and find normalcy in their lives even before a family member has undergone the rehabilitation process. The best time to seek help is upon first noticing that there is a problem. This is where motivational exercises such as an intervention may begin, or how a spouse may get the support needed to confront her partner and talk about alcoholism and what it is doing to the family. It is important to know that you are not alone.

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