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Why addiction can lead to divorce

Addiction can lead to divorce, even when the spouse who eventually asks for the divorce really wants to save the marriage. In some cases, it can get so bad that there's simply no other option.

For instance, one woman who was in Alcoholics Anonymous said that she got divorced twice. In both cases, her spouse was also addicted to alcohol. While she took steps to curb her own addiction, her spouses did not, and she was forced to walk away from the marriages.

One thing that she had to come to terms with was that she wasn't going to change her spouse's behavior. She said that she felt powerless. She knew better than to enable the behavior, and she'd stopped doing so, but that didn't mean she could stop it. That didn't mean she could change the situation just because she wanted to.

She also said that her spouse didn't want to change and wasn't honest with her. Addiction is a disease, but her spouse was trying to get better and they were in it together.

Finally, she said that staying in the marriage made her feel like the victim. She needed to put an end to that. It meant changing her own behavior and situation, and that meant calling off the marriage each time.

Clearly, every situation is different. Not everyone who is struggling with addiction gets divorced. However, this does help show why you may feel like whether or not you split up is out of your hands.

Alcoholism also doesn't discriminated based on wealth or social status. When there's no other option but divorce, especially when dealing with a large marital estate, be sure you know all of your legal rights regarding property division, child custody, and more.

Source: Verywell.com, "Sometimes Al-Anon Members Choose Divorce," accessed June 30, 2017

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