The marriage vows, “for better or for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health,” took on a much heavier meaning when your husband was struggling with addiction. In fact, his substance abuse may have almost ended your marriage for good. It was only after aggressive addiction treatment and family therapy that the two of you managed to reach the light at the end of the tunnel.
But even in recovery, you can tell your husband struggles. There are many days where he sports a relaxed smile and his laughter comes naturally. But there are still days where his tense mood and rigid demeanor tell you he’s struggling with cravings. Oftentimes, those days are triggered by boredom or a lack of activities to keep him busy.
During a time when social distancing is the new normal, boredom and isolation can be even harder to avoid. Luckily, there are plenty of ways you can help your husband stay busy and avoid relapse.
5 Ways to Keep Your Husband from Relapsing
You can’t imagine your marriage or family surviving another round of alcohol or drug abuse. While your husband is largely responsible for his relapse prevention, you can play a key supportive role to help him stay on the recovery path.
Here are some ideas on how to prevent boredom from leading your husband to relapse:
1. Get Him Outside. Being stuck in the house for too long can make anyone stir crazy. When the weather permits, get you and your husband outside together. You can go on walks, hike your local national park, enjoy a long, relaxing bike ride or even play disc golf together, if you haven’t tried it already. All these activities offer fresh air, sunlight and a chance for you and your husband to strengthen your relationship even more.
2. Adopt or Foster a Dog. Did you know that petting a dog can release endorphins to help you feel relaxed? There’s also evidence to suggest that interacting with a dog can lower blood pressure and improve cardiovascular health. Plus, having a rambunctious pooch around keeps you busy! If you and your husband are pet lovers, adopt or foster a rescue dog. Your husband can spend his days training and playing with his new furry companion instead of thinking about substance abuse.
3. Meditate Together. Meditation is another way your loved one can relax and refocus his mind on something other than alcohol or drug cravings. Evidence also suggests meditation can give your husband’s immune system a much-needed boost in fighting against illnesses like the coronavirus (COVID-19). Encourage your husband to meditate daily and motivate yourself to participate with him. Your husband will feel supported by you and you’ll also reap the benefits of meditation practice.
4. Encourage Him to Start a Hands-On Project. Does your husband enjoy building things like furniture or model airplanes? Or maybe he’s more of a technology wizard that’s really good at coding. Whatever your husband enjoys, encourage him to start a new project that will keep him busy for days and weeks on end. Give him a room of the house to repaint and renovate as he chooses or suggest that he build that website or portfolio he’s been talking about.
5. Participate in Virtual Recovery Meetings Daily. Even with social distancing, your husband shouldn’t stop participating in recovery meetings. While he may not be able to attend them in person, there are virtual recovery meetings from sources like In The Rooms, LifeRing, and We Connect Recovery that he can join on a regular basis. These virtual meetings can help him maintain some semblance of his normal recovery schedule and offer him the additional support he needs to stay sober.
Get Your Husband Addiction Support at The Raleigh House
If you fear that your husband is going to relapse no matter what you do or if he already has, don’t give up hope. Your marriage can overcome this and there’s no doubt that he can pick himself up and get sober again. You both just need some additional support from a credible addiction treatment center like The Raleigh House.
At The Raleigh House, we have over 10 years of experience helping families like yours tackle addiction head-on and find lasting peace and healing. Our gold standard continuum of care includes detox, residential treatment, outpatient treatment and sober living – all steps needed to help your husband break free from addiction and learn how to maintain lasting sobriety.
If you’re ready to learn more and get your husband the help he needs, our admissions team is available to take your call. Fill out our form or contact us today.