If you are one of the nearly 30 million people whose marriage is being impacted by drug or alcohol addiction, chances are you have thought about cutting your losses and starting over. But in cases where the addiction started following a medical procedure and pain management got out of control, perhaps you feel guilty about leaving a spouse who was a victim of medical difficulties. Nonetheless, the addiction is taking its toll. What should you do? When is enough enough? Such complex questions may be best addressed with the help of a local divorce attorney.
When is it Time to Leave the Marriage?
Divorce is never an easy thing to contemplate. Nonetheless, relationship experts advise considering a divorce when addiction becomes a central issue in the relationship. Consider the following questions:
- Is married life impacted in a substantial way by the addiction?
- Have self-destructive behaviors had serious or long-term effects on you and your family?
- Does your spouse refuse to engage in counseling for the issue?
- Does your spouse participate in counseling begrudgingly, with little or no positive outcomes?
- Does your spouse lie to you?
- Does money seem to disappear without explanation?
- Does your spouse claim to be drug free, yet fail drug tests?
- Do other irresponsible behaviors accompany drug use, such as cheating, violent actions, or inability to hold a job?
- Have you been making excuses for your spouse’s addiction and the behaviors that result from it?
- Are you becoming isolated from friends and family as you attempt to shield yourself and your spouse from judgment?
Take Care of Yourself and Your Family
If you answered yes to any of these questions, you are in a precarious relationship, and you need help. Non-profit groups such as ALANON, Families Anonymous, and Nar-Anon may be able to assist you with emotional supports and with looking at matters realistically. Beyond that, there are practical matters you should consider addressing:
- Make sure your finances are secure;
- Determine which professional services are available for you, your family, and your spouse;
- Document any problems associated with the addiction;
- Make sure your children are emotionally supported;
- Hire an attorney who listens to your needs and responds to issues.
Habitual drug or alcohol use is grounds for divorce in Mississippi. These grounds may impact your divorce settlement in certain ways:
- Custody and visitation must be determined based on the best interests of the children. If exposure your spouse’s addiction issues is deemed to be detrimental to the children, sole custody may be awarded to you, and visitation may be supervised or limited;
- If addiction has impacted the finances in your marriage, the judge may consider awarding a larger share of the marital assets to you;
- If the addiction has led to violent behavior, a restraining order may be issued against your spouse.
Hiring the Best Attorney
Anyone facing a divorce requires sound legal advice. When addiction is one of the issues you are facing, the empathetic, yet aggressive legal team at the office of Derek L. Hall, PC, The Heavy Hitter will make sure you get the best settlement possible. Contact us in Jackson today for a free, confidential consultation.