Last updated: 05/6/2019
Author: Addictions.com Medical Review
Reading Time: 2 minutes
Remove Any Triggers from Your Home
One of the processes your spouse will learn in addiction treatment is “self-monitoring to recognize cravings early and identify situations that might put one at risk for use,” according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse. During this process, your spouse will likely come to identify the objects, places, and people that trigger a response in them that could lead to relapse. It can be extremely helpful of you to learn these triggers by asking your spouse about them and removing any objects from your home that could activate their cravings.
You should also remove any paraphernalia or anything else associated with drug abuse from your home, all before your spouse comes back from treatment. You can discuss with them too if there are certain people they do not want at the house when they return.
Offer Your Help
Your significant other will likely be feeling overwhelmed after making this transition. By offering to help them, you will create an atmosphere of support, love, and calm that will be more conducive to their recovery and help them avoid relapse. Ask questions that offer assistance but do not demand to know what they need, such as:
- Would you like me to drive you anywhere?
- Can I take on some of your previous chores until you begin to feel stronger?
- Are there any meetings you would like me to attend with you?
It is also important to pay attention to where you can help pick up the slack just in your everyday lives. This will make your spouse less likely to feel overwhelmed.
Find Them an Aftercare Program
Aftercare programs provide support to family members and addicts as the individual leaves treatment and makes their transition into a new phase of their recovery (Executive Office of Health and Human Services). Many residential treatment programs will also help you find an aftercare option that fits your loved one’s needs. Some of the options for aftercare following inpatient treatment include:
- Sober living homes
- Halfway houses
- Outpatient care
- Peer support groups or 12-step programs
- Case management
- Individualized drug counseling
While not all of these will be right for your and your spouse’s situation, certain options could be. For example, you may want your loved one to come back home immediately after residential treatment, but if they could benefit more by living in a sober home, this is an option to consider.
Your spouse may also receive considerable help from attending an outpatient program or a support group regularly. It is important to discuss which options may be necessary for them as well.