It’s common for some couples to drink out or in their homes to relax, celebrate, socialize, and for other reasons. Sometimes, one person prefers to drink while the other doesn’t or consumes more alcohol than the other. In many relationships, drinking is considered normal.
However, there comes a time when drinking becomes a problem in a family or between two intimate persons. It sometimes leads to separation or divorce. It can also be challenging for a drinking partner to realize their behavior is becoming problematic to their significant other until things get out of hand.
This article provides some of the ways alcohol affects relationships. These are signs to watch out for if you’ve been drinking a lot lately. If your alcoholic tendencies are causing some of the issues below, it would be best to stop drinking or reduce your intake.
If you’ve developed dependence, talk to your partner or someone you trust and are comfortable with. They’ll help you find an excellent alcohol addiction treatment center and support you throughout your recovery.
Below are some signs your drinking tendencies are becoming problematic in your relationship:
1. There Are Frequent Conflicts
Alcohol can influence your decision-making, mood, and ability to self-regulate. Therefore, you may make rash decisions, get angry, or become irritable, aggressive, and violent when under the influence. As a result, you might instigate a physical or verbal confrontation with your partner.
If you’ve recently had several conflicts with your significant other, alcohol could be the root cause. You might also realize that you and your loved one fight more after being drunk. Either way, these signs indicate that alcoholism is negatively affecting your relationship. So, it would help if you considered making a change.
Otherwise, drinking will create more family tension and make your partner anxious and afraid. Your children could also become embarrassed or frightened of you. Eventually, your partner could break up with you or ask for a divorce to protect themselves and the kids.
2. You’re Causing Financial Strain
Drinking can also cause financial strain in your relationship. This can happen if you spend too much money buying alcohol, paying fare or gas to drink, or treating a hangover. You might also be making irresponsible financial decisions when drunk.
Besides that, your drinking habits could cause you to miss work or perform poorly. This can make your employer fire you. If your partner is the only one working, one source of income could cause them to struggle to meet all financial needs in the relationship.
And because your income will be insufficient, you’ll face financial difficulties. As a result, you’ll use up all your savings, have several unpaid bills, sink deeper into debt, lose home ownership, or become evicted.
Everyone wants to be in a relationship that lasts. However, several issues can break a relationship, and money is a major factor. When one partner can’t handle finances well or misuses money on things like alcohol and drugs, this can cause fights. If the issue isn’t resolved, partners can divorce or break up.
So, if you notice that your drinking habits are causing financial strain in your relationship, consider cutting down alcohol intake or seeking treatment in case of addiction.
3. You’re Losing Your Partner’s Trust
Trust is essential for a healthy and longer-lasting relationship. Usually, alcoholism causes a person to be dishonest about their drinking problem if they fear being judged, isolated, or neglected. On the other hand, an alcoholic can be truthful about their drinking issue.
However, since drinking might alter their personality and reasoning, they may lie about where they spend time and who they’re with. Also, they may steal cash from their partners to meet their drinking needs.
An alcoholic partner may lie to avoid dealing with the harsh consequences of their actions. This can cause the other person to develop mistrust. They won’t believe anything their partner says, whether drunk or sober. Also, they’ll start feeling neglected or resentful toward their drinking partner.
If trust is lost in a relationship, mending it can be difficult or even impossible. So, if your significant other no longer trusts you because of alcoholism, consider making the necessary life changes.
4. Alcohol Becomes More Important Than Family
If drinking becomes a priority in your life, you’re likely to neglect your partner or kids if you have any. You may spend less time with your loved ones and more time drinking. Also, you might stop meeting their needs so you could have money to support your alcoholism.
If drinking becomes more important than your relationship, you must make changes. And as mentioned, if you fear telling your partner about it, talk to someone you trust and are comfortable with. This can be your relative, friend, therapist, or doctor. These individuals can help you get treatment.
5. Drinking Is Impacting Your Kids
If you and your partner have kids, your drinking habits might affect them negatively. Alcoholism may cause you not to provide for your children’s needs, like shelter, food, education, and healthcare. Also, it could make you aggressive and violent at home. As a result, your kids may feel unloved, neglected, and uncertain about their future.
It’s sometimes difficult for children to acknowledge their parent’s unreasonable actions or responses toward them because of alcoholism. Instead, they blame themselves. As a result, they develop feelings of shame, guilt, or unworthiness. They also experience difficulties in their studies and find it hard to socialize with other kids.
Alcoholism can also have an impact on children into adulthood. For instance, kids who grow up with an alcoholic parent are also likely to drink. They may develop mental health problems like depression, find it hard to create interpersonal relationships or have a lower socioeconomic status.
Your kids may be unable to tell you how your drinking tendencies affect them. However, signs like isolation, low self-esteem, or poor performance in school can indicate your behavior is impacting them negatively. So, it’ll be vital for you to make the necessary changes.
6. It’s Causing Infidelity
Alcoholism could cause you to be unfaithful to your partner. In most cases, people struggling with substance abuse use drinking as an excuse for their cheating. Besides that, since alcohol lowers a person’s inhibitions, they’re more likely to be unfaithful to their partners.
Cheating can be emotional or sexual. Below are signs you’re being unfaithful to your partner:
- You’re spending money and time with another person
- You’re kissing, touching, or having sex with someone else
- You’re looking for fulfillment from someone else
- You aren’t being honest with your partner about someone else you’re regularly spending time with
Infidelity causes the other partner to feel insignificant, unworthy, angry, and resentful. Also, they’ll be constantly worried about contracting a sexually transmitted disease. These can cause them to leave relationships with a cheating partner. So, if your drinking habits are causing you to be unfaithful, it’s time to reevaluate your behavior.
7. It’s Affecting Your Sex Life
Sex is essential in a healthy relationship. It helps partners bond, increases intimacy, acts as a stress reliever, ensures procreation, and gives lovers a strong self-image. Taking alcohol for a long time can negatively affect a person’s sex life. It may cause erection problems, premature ejaculations, lower libido, reduced virginal lubrication, or infertility.
One partner may crave intimacy or children, but the other can’t satisfy these needs because their drinking habits have negatively affected their sex life. In this case, one may feel unloved or no longer desirable to their significant other. Therefore, they may want to experience these feelings elsewhere.
Hence, they may either leave their current relationships or become unfaithful. So, if your sex life seems to have changed negatively, drinking may be the problem.
8. You Aren’t Happy Unless You’re Drunk
Alcohol may make you feel relaxed, less anxious, and happier about your relationship. This is because it’s thought to increase serotonin and dopamine production in the body. Even so, this is only a temporary effect that wears off after some time.
As a result, some hours after drinking, you may feel anxious, depressed, angry, agitated, and experience other negative emotions. This might cause you to take more alcohol to feel happier again.
If you’re constantly drinking to feel good about your relationship, you may be masking a serious problem. Thus, finding ways to identify and solve the underlying issue might be helpful. You and your partner can consider therapy in this case.
9. You Keep Drinking Despite Experiencing Negative Effects
Drinking can cause you to lose your job or lead to several charges for driving under the influence. It may also negatively affect relationships with friends and relatives. Your partner may be there for you through all these.
However, if you can’t quit alcohol despite experiencing these negative effects, it may be challenging for them to keep supporting you. Therefore, evaluate the impacts alcohol has had in your life and consider a change if it has caused several negative effects.
Many couples drink to relieve stress, have fun, interact with others, relax, or celebrate. Casual and social drinking isn’t problematic in most cases. However, alcoholism may start negatively affecting a relationship in several ways. Sadly, some people don’t realize their drinking tendencies are problematic until their significant other leaves them or asks for a divorce.
If you’re the partner engaging in alcoholism, your drinking habits may become a problem in your relationship if there are frequent conflicts or financial strain. Drinking may also be an issue if you’re losing your partner’s trust, it has become more important than them, or it’s impacting your kids negatively.
Moreover, alcohol may be a problem if it’s causing infidelity and affecting your sex life, or you aren’t happy unless you’re drunk and keep drinking despite experiencing negative effects. If you notice any of these issues, consider a change before your relationship reaches the point of no return. Cut down on alcohol consumption or seek treatment in case of addiction.