Couples Alcohol & Drug Rehab Centers in Florida

A substance use problem can easily tear apart a relationship, but what happens when the people in the relationship are both using drugs? What happens when drug use, by one partner or both, threatens the wellbeing of the couple’s children?

This page will discuss how drug rehab centers for couples offer specific, tailored treatment to address the corrupted dynamics that exist between partners in these situations and give them the tools they need to repair their relationship.

Substance Abuse in Relationships

Tragically, relationships where both members use drugs are quite common. The Psychiatric Clinics of North America journal notes that women who use drugs or alcohol are twice as likely as men to have a partner who also misuses substances.

According to the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy, signs of substance use affecting the functioning of a relationship include:

  • Getting drunk or high together as the only shared enjoyment.
  • Violence and abuse (fueled by the drug or alcohol use) from one partner to another or by both partners.
  • Needing drugs or alcohol to show affection.
  • Neglecting shared responsibilities, like taking care of the children or the house.

It is very likely that these problems occur in combination, pushing the relationship to the brink of termination and endangering the wellbeing of one partner or the couple’s children.

As with any form of substance misuse, professional help should be sought at the first sign of trouble, and individuals should not wait until the situation has escalated to the point where the drug or alcohol abuse can cause lasting and permanent damage.

Alcohol & Drug Rehab Centers for Couples

Some treatment centers are equipped to offer therapy to both members in the relationship, but whether the two partners will go through rehabilitation together depends on the medical evaluation and opinion of their doctor.

In a study entitled “I love you … and heroin: care and collusion among drug-using couples,” the Substance Abuse Treatment, Prevention and Policy journal notes that a strong relationship between the partners can be helpful as they go through rehab together, and the strength of the union can provide a sense of motivation and incentive to get and stay sober.

To capitalize on this, a number of treatment facilities offer couples the option of attending the same rehab program if the admitting doctor feels that the two partners are equally committed to recovery and that they can feed off their connection to one another.

The desire to get better is a huge component of a successful recovery, and investing in a romantic partner (and having that investment reciprocated) bodes extremely well for the relationship as a whole.

However, it may be the case that attending treatment together is not possible. A doctor may make this determination if either partner in the relationship has specific issues that have to be treated separately, issues that may not be readily treated if the couple is sharing space within the facility.

Should Couples Go to Rehab Together?

While attending rehab together as a couple may benefit some relationships, there are situations when it may be preferable for couples to attend drug rehab separately:

  • If there is a history or threat of violence and abuse from one partner to the other (or both partners to each other).
  • If one partner has psychological or medical issues that require more extensive care.
  • When codependency is a factor in the relationship, which may result in one partner focusing on the other rather than addressing their own recovery.

In cases where partners attend rehab separately, it is not always necessary for the partners to be completely isolated, especially if they demonstrate a commitment to making the relationship, and recovery, work. They might still get to see and communicate with each other by means of therapy sessions multiple times a week, and curated visits might also be arranged as part of the therapy.

But, if it is felt that recovery is better assured by keeping the partners sequestered, the two would be housed in different parts of the facility or even in different facilities.

Relapse in Relationships

Research published in the Journal of Substance Abuse Treatment suggests that even if only one person in the relationship is abusing drugs or alcohol, working with both partners has benefits, and better reduces the risk of relapse, than if only the substance using-partner received treatment.

The risk of relapse is taken into consideration in any form of treatment, and it is no different for couples receiving therapy for drug use. Even if only one partner is using drugs or alcohol and that partner completes rehab, the possibility of relapsing will always have to be taken into consideration.

In a relationship, the triggers might be based on powerful emotions or physical actions (like arguing or sex, even though fighting is an important dynamic in a relationship if done properly).

Similarly, bad habits in a relationship, such as codependency (where the relationship is emotionally unbalanced and abusive) or enabling (where the substance use is actively or passively encouraged under the belief that it is for the good of the union), will continue unchecked unless both members of the relationship receive treatment, even if the treatment is administered separately.

Sober Partners & Learning from Couples in Rehab

As much as relapse is always a risk for a newly sober person, the danger in a recovering relationship is that if one partner relapses, the other might follow suit, or that the other partner might be subject to physical or emotional abuse and any children in the home might be affected as well.

This is an important area where being connected to an aftercare program (like a 12-Step group) could save not only a partner’s sobriety, but the relationship itself. Learning from other couples who have gone through a similar experience is an invaluable step in overcoming the stumbles of recovery and adding to the new strength of the relationship.

Whether treatment is received together or apart, most rehab for couples will revolve around some basics. Some of the topics covered might include:

  • Effective communication: how to talk through problems without anger or resentment
  • Resolving conflict: how to stay calm and levelheaded when having a disagreement
  • Stress-management: how to turn negative stress into a channel for positive outcomes
  • Self-awareness: being aware and mindful of one’s own thoughts, feelings, and behavior, especially as they pertain to how one partner interacts with the other, which is key for catching bad habits and hurtful actions toward the partner before they are allowed to develop

Alcohol & Drug Rehab for Married Couples

If the couple receiving therapy is married, then there is a strong chance that both partners will have deep (and perhaps far-reaching) family ties that have also been affected by the drug use. For that reason, drug rehab for married couples may be a bit more extensive than rehab for couples who cohabitate or couples where there are no children or in-laws.

This may involve family therapy sessions where children and other members of the family are invited to participate or classes that focus on childcare, money management, and legal matters as they relate to a married couple.

An important component of any relationship is time spent apart, where both members are free to explore their own interests and hobbies, or simply enjoy solitude, without constantly ceding personal and emotional space to their partner.

For a couple going through recovery together, this component takes on a new dynamic; it is expected that both members will look out for one another, providing support and encouragement when sobriety gets difficult, and sharing intimacy and love to build one another up. Doing this, while respecting boundaries and allowing the other partner to flourish on their own might seem difficult to balance at first.

This is another area where counseling and therapy can help. Finding the sweet spot between spending time together and spending time apart is a tough act for any couple, let alone a partnership that has been corrupted by substance use, and let alone a union that is learning new ways of living and loving each other.

Drug rehab that focuses on couples, and having sober friends and other couples in recovery, will help the partners in a relationship understand how they can be there for each other and, importantly, how they can be there for themselves too. The alternative is a relationship where one partner completely defers to the other, creating a very unhealthy and unbalanced dynamic.

Integrative Behavioral Couples Therapy

In drug rehab for couples, a therapist might borrow a particular technique from general couples therapy and combine it with substance use treatment philosophies. The hybrid is known as Integrative Behavioral Couples Therapy, which seeks to improve how the relationship works for both partners by helping each partner understand better how their loved one’s emotions work.

Researchers writing in the Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology noted that problems as a result of drug use in the relationship arise from how partners react emotionally to the effects of the drug use and not just the use itself. Integrated Behavioral Couples Therapy examines the emotional context between the people in a relationship and helps them “make deliberate changes” in how they address and respond to problems.

Acceptance is at the foundation of drug therapy for couples: accepting that the drug use is a problem and accepting that the relationship needs to change. If these two truths are accepted, then eliminating drug use, reducing conflict, and improving communication within the relationship come much easier. Both partners are on the same page and the same team.

Rehab Treatment for Couples in Florida

There are several options for couples looking to attend rehab in Florida. Recovery First Treatment Center is a drug rehab near Miami that offers multiple levels of addiction treatment from medical detox to outpatient rehab. Highly experienced clinicians employ customized evidence-based treatment to support each patient’s lasting recovery.

At Recovery First, we encourage couples looking for rehab in Florida to attend separate addiction treatment centers. We have a network of addiction rehab centers in Florida, so each partner can attend a different rehab at the same time. This way, each partner can benefit from addiction treatment options that are right for them.

The Price of Not Getting Help
When contemplating the costs of addiction treatment for yourself, child, or loved one, consider the costs, or consequences, of “things as they are now.” What would happen if the substance abuse or addiction continued? Rehab doesn't have to be expensive. We accept a variety of insurances. Learn more below.