Can Substance Abuse & Addiction Lead to Infidelity?

Man and woman dealing with Infidelity

Commonly known as “alcoholism,” instances of “alcohol use disorder” increased by an alarming 49% in the first decade of the 2000s, according to a study published in JAMA Psychiatry in August 2017. According to that same study, 1 in 8 Americans meet the diagnostic criteria for alcohol addiction. With these high numbers, it is not surprising that alcohol addiction and infidelity are becoming a problem more families are trying to handle.

Substance Abuse and Addiction

There are several factors that contribute to alcohol and substance abuse and addiction, including genetic predisposition, mental health issues, and environmental factors. When a person drinks, especially if they drink to excess, physiologically the brain produces an excess of dopamine, which results in that euphoric top-of-the-world feeling. If not controlled, alcohol addiction can result in:

  • Poor decision making
  • Reckless choices
  • Risky sexual behavior
  • Lowered inhibitions
  • False sense of confidence

Alcohol Addiction and Infidelity

Infidelity that occurs as a result of alcohol addiction, while sometimes a symptom of a troubled relationship, most times has nothing to do with the abuser’s partner at all. It is a manifestation of their own struggles with anxiety and depression.

Being with another person in an intimate relationship provides comfort and validity in that moment that they feel is lacking. The physical relationship gives them a false sense of self-worth that they are desperately trying to find. Many times, the person with an alcohol addiction already dislikes themselves intensely, so they give up on themselves and begin to believe that bad behavior is the only thing they know.

Treatment for Substance Abuse and Addiction

At Summit Malibu, we embrace the family dynamics of a substance abuse and addiction issue, utilizing the Brief Strategic Family Therapy (BSFT) method of counseling. Using BSFT, we address the needs of not only the addict, but the entire family, by teaching the following:

  • Conflict resolution skills
  • Reframing personal interactions
  • Holistic mind and body treatment for all

If alcohol addiction and infidelity have disrupted your life, we understand that it is challenging to recover and rebuild trust. Let Summit Malibu guide you through this troubled time and lead you to happier days. Contact us today for more information about our strategic family therapy and substance abuse programs.