How Substance Abuse Can Affect DivorcePutnam Law Office
An addiction to drugs or alcohol can place great strain on the family. Even one parent who is addicted to a substance can displace their addictions struggles on other family members like their children or spouse. Built-up tensions from these different types of conflicts can lead to domestic violence or abuse. This can push many spouses to contemplate divorce. If you are considering divorce because of substance abuse in your spouse, try talking to an Oklahoma Divorce Lawyer to see what the next step is.
Substance Abuse and Divorce
Around 35 percent of married couples seek a divorce because of substance abuse problems. It is uncommon for marriage partners to agree that substance abuse was the cause of their divorce. Partners who abuse substances are not likely to admit that their substance use significantly contributed to the divorce.
Substance abuse can involve many factors that create stress in the person abusing substances. Common factors like these can stem from attempts to quit the substance or from no control over substance use. Excessive substance use can lead the person to commit regrettable actions like physical or sexual abuse. This can estrange the spouse and children.
Attempts to quit the substance can raise stress levels in one member that are then taken out on other members in the form of yelling, outbursts, social withdrawal, or physical violence. The effects of withdrawal coupled with strong cravings can make quitting certain substances extremely difficult and even deadly without formal treatment.
Disagreements about stopping the substance or seeking treatment can escalate into conflicts and arguments, which make up around 72% of reasons why married couples seek divorce.
Effects of Substance Abuse on the Family
People who are lost in their substance use can find themselves committing acts they never thought they were capable of. Their personalities can change for the worse. Common consequences of substance use involve sexual abuse, child maltreatment, and neglect. Children who undergo these types of abuse can grow up turning to criminal activities as coping mechanisms in certain cases
Part of this results from improper attachments the children develop with their substance-using parent. Under healthy circumstances, a child should form an attachment to both parents that is secure and slowly becomes individuated as they reach adolescence. Substance using parents who argue in front of their children, ignore their kids or abuse them are not fostering healthy attachment patterns in their children.
Unhealthy attachment patterns are often the start of mental disorders that can become worse in early adulthood. In this way, substance abuse has the potential to affect the entire family, but can also impact whether child support, child custody, or visitation rights are received.
Family Lawyer in Oklahoma
Battling substance use for the person using substances or for other family members affected by substance use can be challenging for anyone. Consider talking to an Oklahoma Family Lawyer if you are considering seeking a divorce. Call the Putnam Law Office today at (405)-849-4898 for a consultation. Mr. Putnam is an Oklahoma City, OK attorney who is dedicated to his clients.