My husband is in detox for alcohol for the first time. He gets to come home tomorrow and start intensive outpatient rehab. I haven’t been able to sleep the whole time he has been there. Our fights were terrible before he went in. I am afraid he will be angry when he gets out. We have lots of very active children and that makes it hard to keep a peaceful environment at home, but he does have his own private area in our finished basement. Inpatient rehab was not an option because we depend on his income. He works from home and makes his own work hours. Any advice on how to adjust when he gets home?
Hey @AD1983 I wonder if you have friends / family around that can bolster you, your husband and your family with support during his return home? I can imagine he might need some space to recoup and you as well! I find things feel tougher without sleep so I also wonder how we might get you more rest.
In my experience, recovery takes way longer than I expected so I guess just trying to keep perspective: addiction is a real brain habit that’s hard to break, and healing from it takes time. So taking care of each of you during this process is really important and helpful.
Also, we have our next Group Course cycle starting up this Monday at 7pm EST which would not only be a huge support for you, but also provide you practical skills to navigate this situation. A main topic we cover is communication and it sounds like that will be really helpful for you because the way we communicate with someone in addiction or recovery can have quite a big impact. I hope you’ll consider joining, you can sign up HERE. And I’m always happy to answer more questions on it.
Here is my story of my son going into rehab
My adolescent son was pretty abusive verbally prior to rehab and in rehab. He wasn’t allowed visitors until Monday night which was 3 days. He was allowed to call but I kept refusing his calls because I didn’t want to face the abuse. The fact I did not should have told me that I was in much more emotional pain than I let myself on to. That was my norm.
I got there with his stepfather and as soon as that locked door opened he rushed out and hugged both of us. He told us he was happy we put him in there. He loved us.
I could have fainted right there. I’m not sure how I managed to stay upright. Many years later things are far from perfect in our relationship but he never drugged again.
It is hard to be open to good after so much bd.
So how is it going?
Are you 'back to ‘sub’ normal" lol or is husband working on himself? No matter what it takes time for everyone to get to a new normal. Be gentle with yourself and stay connected with someone who just listens. It seems to take what it takes to get there. You can only do you. I can only do me.
This is just my opinion so take what you like and leave the rest.
Everything will be secondary for him to recovery. If you can look for your own recovery from the effects on you of his substance abuse, you may find a lot of the marital problems will go away. he didn’t get sick overnight and recovery is a process, like getting diabetes under control rather than a cure like antibiotics are for an infection. You can still go to counselling individually. Find someone who works with families in recovery.
Sometimes there is a follow-up but the person has either forgotten it or the staff forgot it. Ask him if he would mind you double-checking and if it is OK then call the place he rehabbed and ask what to do now. That’s advice but these things happen with any inpatient discharge. There is no blame. It is just information.
What are you doing for you? He knows how to get better. So how do you get better?
The first day home was pretty terrible but things have gotten better. It has only been a week. His mood swings are better. They put him on fast acting anti anxiety meds and sleeping pills and he won’t tell me what meds they are or how much he is taking. I can definitely tell when he has taken his anti anxiety meds. He acts a little buzzed. We are planning on getting marital counseling in the new year. I do not know if it is too early in his recovery to try to fix our marital problems or if we should just keep focusing on him staying sober. He has been doing outpatient rehab 3 days a week. After a month there is no plan for what he will do next to help him in his recovery.
I feel like my circumstance is complicated because I am financially dependent on my husband. He always wanted me to stay home with the children, so I have been out of the work force for 14 years. He is self employed and hasn’t been working as reliably as I think he should. His behavior sometimes makes me wonder if he may have a mental health issue like bipolar disorder, that he was using alcohol to cope with. Anyway, to take care of myself, I meet with my pastor weekly for counseling. I have been doing little things like taking showers when I feel stressed. My faith is what has been getting me through this all, but it still has been affecting my health negatively.
Thanks for sharing Nora. I remember when my husband came home from rehab. On the one hand it was amazing because he had come so far in a month, and on the other hand I wanted the addiction recovery to be done with. But it takes so much longer for the healing to take place than I realized. The best metaphor I can think of is like bambi on ice, just trying every day to make it through. In my experience it really does take an immense amount of effort in those early days and months! There’s not much energy left over to focus on anything but they’re healing when they’re in that stage.