While breakups are almost never easy, the pain experienced during and after divorce or the collapse of a long-term relationship can be as overwhelming and all-consuming as grief.  Society often tells us to brush ourselves off and move forward after heartbreak, but emotionally and psychologically, the loss of a relationship can feel almost like the death of a loved one.  Your whole life may be uprooted as you are forced to let go of the future you had imagined with that person, as well as deal with the financial and logistical aspects of cutting ties. Many people turn to alcohol during this difficult time to cope with their emotions and numb themselves, but drowning your sorrows in this way will only slow down the healing process and further complicate an already stressful situation.

A recent study found that divorced people are more likely to drink in excess than married couples.  This may be due to a variety of reasons including depression, boredom, more time spent dating and socializing in bars, and the lack of constant accountability to another person.  While drinking and depression are often linked, the relationship between the two is dangerous and unhealthy. Alcohol increases depressive symptoms over time, and finding temporary relief through intoxication prevents you from working through your emotions in a productive way.  After a breakup, when you may already be more likely to behave recklessly, alcohol can cause you to do and say things you will regret, and leave you wishing you had made choices that preserved your dignity.

If there are children involved when you experience separation or divorce, alcohol use can have serious consequences when it comes to custody battles and the emotional wellbeing of your kids.  Not only will developing a drinking problem keep you from being present and involved with your children, but it will also increase the chances that your children will turn to alcohol themselves in times of hardship.  Alcohol abuse may also be used in court to determine if you are a fit parent during custody hearings. When it comes to your children, numbing your pain in a way that puts you at risk for addiction as well as many other life-altering consequences, just isn’t worth it.

If you have been using alcohol to cope with the painful loss of a relationship, there are better and healthier ways to begin to heal. At Arbor Behavioral Healthcare, you will meet knowledgeable, compassionate professionals that understand addiction in all its forms.  The Arbor uses an integrative and holistic approach to treat addiction and mental health issues. No treatment is one-size-fits-all, and at The Arbor you will have a team of experts prepared to create your customized treatment plan. We offer care for your mind, body, and spirit, so that you can heal from the inside out and look forward to a lifetime of sobriety and wellness.  If you are ready to take the first step in your recovery, please call us at 844-413-2690.