One of our very first dates was to his funeral. While intoxicated, your spouse may choose to drive with the children in the car or put their safety at risk in other ways. When someone abuses alcohol, nearly all facets of life and relationships are affected. When finances, children, or emotional health are jeopardized, a divorce filing may be necessary.

physical abuse

With kids, it’s best to keep answers short and honest. They will let you know if they need more information. Try to avoid inserting your opinions, especially involving your partner, and just focus on helping your kids process this complex situation. Be sure to let your kids know that they are loved and you are here for them if they need to talk. Remember, you are the parent and they should not be comforting or taking care of you.

What To Expect After Divorcing an Alcoholic

Those who suffer from ongoing alcohol abuse may sometimes be quite functional in life’s other aspects. We have written an article on the subject of California family law alcohol and drug testing and we encourage you to read it for more information. It would be easier if the spouse and parent who suffers the ongoing alcohol abuse simply admitted to the problem and sought help.

This can be accomplished by having a divorce attorney present the issue of alcoholism to a family court when filing the initial divorce papers. The only regret I have is waiting too long to leave him. I waited around for years thinking he would go and made the mistake of trying to get him to go. I have severed contact with him other than emailing. We have to look out for our own emotional state.

The experience and knowledge of your attorney will help in getting divorced from your alcoholic spouse without any hassle. According to US divorce statistics it has been found that divorced or separated men and women are three times more likely to be alcoholics or to have an alcohol problem as compared to married couples. In fact, alcohol is one of the many reasons behind divorce. The habit of drinking in one of the spouse has probably ended more marriages and broken up more families than you can even think of. At this point in the article, it might be obvious that when divorcing an alcoholic spouse, a divorce attorney is necessary.


A forensic psychologist often performs the custody evaluation. Some forensic psychologists also perform drug evaluations. A drug evaluation is different from a private child custody evaluation although a drug evaluation may be part of the custody evaluation. The date your attorney files and serves the divorce papers depends on each of the above issues. Many divorce attorneys do not speak with their clients about this issue.

Your partner’s heavy drinking may be distressing your kids and other individuals in your closest circle. In fact, many times a child of an alcoholic will mistakenly believe they are partly to blame for their parent’s lack of affection towards them. Going through a divorce is emotionally tough for anybody, but it may be the best decision for those married to an alcoholic. Those who have divorced their spouses say they feel better because they don’t have to deal with an addict any longer. Regardless of whether fault is specifically stated or not in the divorce petition, it is important to understand that alcoholism may be relevant to other issues, such as child custody and visitation. Alcohol Alcohol use disorder affects millions of people in the United States.

I personally think this woman did the right thing divorcing an alcoholic. But, I would never judge anyone for staying, either. The decision to stay or leave an addict is very personal and there are lots of factors that go into the decision. No one should judge someone for staying or leaving or how long they wait before leaving.

She came back to my house, and after a few days, she and my ex-husband seemed to be OK. I know there are more phone calls like that one ahead. Still, she continues to want to see her father because, after all, he’s her father and she loves him.

What to do when the alcohol abusing spouse refuses to assist in the family’s financial support

As substance abuse is often closely scrutinized by family courts during divorce proceedings, if your spouse is an alcoholic the court may order random alcohol testing – even if they are seeking treatment. Additionally, any Adverse actions taken by your spouse may be used against them in decisions related to custody arrangements. In terms of rights to property, most courts will try to split all assets equally between both parties. However, in some instances, the alcoholic spouse could be penalized. For example, if they used a significant portion of marriage funds to support their alcohol addiction. The same is true for their right to spousal support; if they have used an unfair amount of assets to purchase alcohol, their spousal support payments might be reduced.

An alcoholic who is reliant on another person, like their partner, can grow even more dependent on that person for support. Your wife needs a support system during this difficult time. Be present, communicative, and supportive throughout her recovery journey. Financially support your wife’s unhealthy drinking habits. Hold your wife accountable for her actions and inactions due to alcohol abuse.


It can even turn into a situation with a cycle of abuse, particularly if the spouse abusing alcohol is prone to violence when drinking or experiences blackouts. A person with alcoholism may not be entirely unfit for parenting, but if you believe protective boundaries must be in place, a divorce attorney can provide counsel about achieving that goal. This sets a stage for distrusting your ex-spouse around your children for extended periods.

Professional addiction treatment options are available, and your wife may need more help than you alone can give her. Reach out to support groups and seek professional help. Remember, your wife’s alcohol or drug addiction is not your fault. If her alcohol problems are beginning to take a toll on your well-being you may need to take a step back. Because alcoholics tend to lie about their drinking habits and may even try to hide their consumption, this kind of secrecy is toxic for relationships. Even if abuse doesn’t come into play, alcoholics tend to ignore the needs of their loved ones.

Build a Post-Divorce Financial Plan

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Separating from an alcoholic spouse can also impact child custody arrangements. Divorcing an alcoholic husband isn’t the first choice of married couples. As a part of being husband and wife, it’s still our duty to extend the help that we can offer to fix the marriage. Alcoholic spouse puts you in a very hard situation especially when you already have children. The effects of having an alcoholic husband aren’t things that should be ignored as they can escalate into a more serious problem.

  • Living with an alcoholic spouse can be frustrating, difficult, and even frightening.
  • But honestly, it was comforting, and there was an instant understanding that I wouldn’t tell a soul in my community I saw her there.
  • I knew my fiance’s mother had been twice divorced, but there was no class in college about the impact of our childhoods on our adulthoods.
  • It takes many, many years, and lots of support, professional help, and faith to heal.

However, past attempts at rehabilitation, medical records, witnesses to the alcohol abuse, admissions of the alcohol abuse, and similar evidence can also corroborate both the past and ongoing alcohol abuse. Some of these pursuits may run into privacy objections. People who become violent in the influence of alcohol and this will put you and your kids at greater risk. This is also the most common reason why divorcing an alcoholic is the best option for some. Putting alcohol as your priority will make a person financially and emotionally unavailable for this spouse and children. If you think that you have done everything to save your marriage and the only option is to file for divorce, then you should be physically, mentally, financially, and emotionally ready for it.

It is a fact that what are sober living house ruless cannot treat their own drinking problem no matter how much will power they have. But there is always hope for recovery if support is there. Normally, I wouldn’t cover a legal topic in this much depth.

Divorcing an alcoholic who is also the family’s financial support

Alcoholism is a very common problem today especially among married couples. An alarming rise to alcoholism gave way to an increase in divorce application for the same cause. The alcoholic parent may only be allowed to visit their children if someone else is present. Additionally, if your spouse is an alcoholic and has been convicted of crimes relating to their addiction, they may not be entitled to certain privileges in the eyes of the court. While cirrhosis scars from excessive drinking are irreversible, quitting alcohol and leading a healthier lifestyle can help your liver heal from alcohol-related liver disease. For example,OhioandOklahomaallow habitual drunkenness as alegal groundfor divorce.Arkansasalso allows drunkenness for one year or more as a legal ground for divorce.

I will survive and my son is smart and knows how he is communication-wise. When it gets to the point you know there is a problem and the marriage breaks down, LEAVE, take your children and keep them safe. The drinker will make you feel inferior and will lie, do anything to harm your thinking. Get help from a counselor and have your children go as well. I dropped all of our common friends, left everything that reminded me of him, even our dog 🙁 best wishes. When I got divorced from an alcoholic 10 years ago, I’ll never forget the feeling of freedom I had.

In fact, it’s a common dilemma today where families, marriages, and children are affected because of alcoholism. But the good thing here is that there are ways in which one spouse can present this as evidence so it can be considered as a ground to divorcing an alcoholic spouse. If you are married to an alcoholic, then you are very much aware of the serious problems that alcohol abuse has with your marriage and family. The length of a person’s sobriety is also relevant. A long duration of sobriety makes it more likely that a parent will continue to remain sober and be able to care for their children.

Expungement may make it difficult to obtain the records from the Court. These are usually electronic receipts, credit card statements, and activity statements, including those on PayPal, as one example. Everything we write here applies to functional addicts, dysfunctional addicts and the junkies.