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What Are The Spousal Substance Abuse Issues

What Are The Spousal Substance Abuse Issues

Substance abuse can be a significant problem in any marriage, particularly when it comes to spousal substance abuse. It can lead to a range of harmful consequences, including emotional, financial, and physical abuse. In this article, we will explore the spousal substance abuse issue, its causes, signs, and treatment options.

What is Spousal Substance Abuse?

Spousal substance abuse occurs when one member of a marriage or partnership becomes addicted to drugs or alcohol. It affects both partners in the relationship, as well as any children or other family members living in the home.

Causes of Spousal Substance Abuse

There are several factors that can contribute to spousal substance abuse, including:

1. Stress: Marriage can be a stressful experience, and some individuals may turn to drugs or alcohol as a way to cope with the pressures of married life.

2. History of addiction: Individuals with a history of addiction may be more likely to develop a substance abuse problem in a marriage.

3. Mental health issues: Mental health disorders such as depression and anxiety can lead to substance abuse problems.

Signs of Spousal Substance Abuse

Some common signs of spousal substance abuse include:

1. Frequent mood swings: Spouses who abuse drugs or alcohol may experience frequent mood swings that can fluctuate between happy and angry, or even violent.

2. Neglecting responsibilities: Spousal substance abuse can lead to neglect of responsibilities such as work, parenting, or household chores.

3. Financial problems: Substance abuse can result in significant financial burdens, such as spending money on drugs or alcohol instead of bills or other financial obligations.

Treatment for Spousal Substance Abuse

The most effective treatment for spousal substance abuse will depend on the individual’s specific needs. Some common treatment options include:

1. Inpatient rehabilitation: Inpatient treatment allows individuals to receive specialized care in a structured environment.

2. Outpatient rehabilitation: Outpatient treatment is often less intensive and can provide support while allowing the individual to remain living at home.

3. Couples therapy: Couples therapy can help spouses work together to address substance abuse problems, improve communication, and rebuild their relationship.


Spousal substance abuse can have severe and far-reaching consequences for a marriage and family unit. It is essential to seek help if you or your spouse are experiencing a substance abuse problem. By seeking treatment and support, couples can work together to overcome addiction and build a healthy, sober relationship.

Child visitation law often gives a parent the benefit of the doubt when it comes to giving them parent visitation rights.

Even if one parent has emotional problems, a history of abuse, or a drug problem, it is possible that they will still be able to be allowed to take advantage of parent visitation.

This child visitation law has the ability to protect the rights of the non-custodial parent, even a drug or alcohol-addicted spouse, which may frustrate and worry the custodial parent. However, parent visitation rights are not guaranteed and there may be ways around letting one’s substance-abusing spouse have parent visitation rights with the children.

Standard child visitation law allows each parent to spend time with the child unless the behavior of one parent risks the safety of the child. While the parent visitation may not be cut off for a parent’s drug or alcohol use if it endangers the welfare of the child the courts will take it very seriously and possibly deny or limit visitation to supervised visits.

If a parent wants to try and terminate the other parent’s visitation for the non-custodial parent because of their substance abuse problem, there are legal steps they must take.

Child visitation law gives the non-custodial parent the legal right to be notified of the custodial parent’s request to end visitation. They also have a right to defend themselves in court to try to maintain parent visitation rights.

The custodial parent who is seeking to end the parent visitation rights of the non-custodial parent must prove that the other parent does have a substance abuse problem and that it is putting the child at risk.

The court may decide that the substance abuse problem is not grounds for terminating all parent visitation rights. They may, however, determine that restricted visits, supervised visits, or visits in a public place may be safest for the child.

Proving that the ex-spouse’s drug use endangers to a child may be difficult. According to child visitation law, parent visitation cannot be stopped due to drug use alone, it must be proven that the drug or alcohol abuse affects the child in a negative way.

If the spouse’s substance abuse problems cause the spouse to treat the children badly or if they use drugs in front of the child, the court is very likely to deny parent visitation. However, if the substance abuse was in the past, the non-custodial parent has the right to argue that past behavior should have no bearing on the future.

Child visitation law does take a parent’s substance abuse very seriously. However, one’s substance abuse alone is not necessarily enough to stop the parent visitation rights of the non-custodial parent, unless it can be proven that it is affecting the child in a negative way.