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How Christian Wives Support Husbands While In Rehab

Jennifer Cousineau MSCP, LPCI, NCC

Medically reviewed by

Jennifer Cousineau, MSCP, LPCI, NCC

April 12, 2019

Supporting a husband through rehab may be difficult and trying on a marriage, but it can have a positive impact on a person’s recovery.

When a person is addicted to a drug, including alcohol, the symptoms of addiction can be devastating for a family. Rather than focusing on normal, day-to-day life, the person struggling with drug abuse is busy craving the next high.

This scenario also applies to the Christian family. If a husband is dealing with inappropriate drug use, everyone close to him suffers, especially his wife and/or children. The male, who is meant to be a strong role model and backbone of the family, has failed in a painful way. Thankfully, many of these men end up seeking treatment through the advice of friends, family, and their pastors.

However, it must be said that during the rehab process, the strength and love of a wife for her husband cannot be matched by anyone else. So, how does a wife go about providing support for her significant other through this difficult time?

Here are the steps that will be detailed in this article:

  • Be Aware Of The Illness
  • Do Away With Shame
  • Forgive
  • Communicate
  • Pray
  • Read The Bible

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Learn The Basics Of Addiction

The first step in being a wife who makes a positive and influential difference starts with a basic notion: Being educated about addiction. Although this in itself is not specific to any religious background, being knowledgeable about your husband’s situation just makes sense.

Learning what your husband is going through and the challenges he faces is important. As you do more research, you discover that many people around the world struggle with a drug problem. However unfortunate this fact is, it is comforting to know that you and your family are not alone in this journey.

Dissolving Shame And Condemnation

Your family has a foundation in Christianity, but a religious affiliation does not make a person immune to trials and temptations, including drug or alcohol abuse. Christians come against problems just like everyone else; the difference is how they are dealt with.

As a Christian wife, you are aware of the “spiritual warfare” that is faced by every person. The phrase spiritual warfare refers to the battles of sin and evil that are present in the world. Because of your knowledge of this, you understood that as your husband came forward about his addictive tendencies, he was dealing with a physical, mental, emotional, and even spiritual battle.

Since we all face various struggles and sins, your husband’s drug dependency is not something he or you should be ashamed about. The Bible says that “Everything exposed by the light becomes visible, for everything that is illuminated becomes light itself.” -Ephesians 5:13

This verse could be translated, “Rather than keep a problem secret and fueling the oppressive nature of negativity, it is better to bring an issue into the light for a process of healing and restoration to occur.” This process of being honest and open about the reality of the situation is freeing and ultimately is what will transform a person’s life.


Blame can only be completely eliminated through forgiveness. You may have been hard on yourself for ways you think that you drove your husband to drink or use a drug. You might have also thought about or openly expressed your complete distaste for your husband’s habit in a not-so-tactful way.

No matter the case, it is vital that you forgive yourself and your husband for any wrongs that are thought to have been or that was indeed committed. Since the basis of Christianity homes in on God’s sacrifice of his own son (Jesus Christ) for the sins of the world, forgiveness is an act that is central to implement in a Christian lifestyle.

Forgiving a person means choosing to give a person undeserving grace, just as God does for his people. The process of forgiveness does not mean that you are saying that the behavior of the person in question is appropriate; it just means that you refuse to allow negative thoughts about him or her to poison you any longer. You are releasing yourself and them from toxic chains of unforgiveness.

Trust may be built slowly in the future, but for now, forgiveness is key to your mental and emotional health; the same goes for your husband. It’s okay to let him know that you forgive him too. In fact, he and you both might be overwhelmingly surprised at what vibrancy such an act can bring to your lives.

Open, Healthy Communication

As you move forward with a positive attitude that does not involve placing the weight of shame and blame on your husband or yourself, it will allow you to communicate more effectively with your mate.

Although the trust has been broken in your relationship, you now have the ability to connect with your husband through a compassionate and understanding perspective. This is the only way to make strides in the right direction.

Give yourself permission to speak kindly to your husband, and do away with bitterness that you might have previously had.


The Bible says that “the prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.” – James 5:16 The same verse also notes that making requests, and even sins known to God can bring healing.

Prayer is simply talking to God. When Christians pray, they can be honest to God, just as they would a loving father. Articulating needs to God, whether concerns, struggles, anxieties, joys, celebrations, etc. is another staple of the Christian life.

Christian wives will lean on prayer as comfort and source for guidance, not just when their husbands are in rehab, but throughout their lives.

Biblical Principles

Christians believe that “the word of God is living and active” (Hebrews 4:12). This means that reading The Bible can give new insight and awareness to specific situations a Christian wife is dealing with.

Taking time to read the Bible is an essential way for a Christian wife to prepare herself mentally, emotionally, and spiritually for supporting herself, her family, and her husband, who is experiencing the journey of rehab and recovery.

Everyday Application

While reading, these principles might seem good and well. However, sometimes it is more difficult to live out everyday life and actually apply Christian convictions. After all, life doesn’t always go as planned.

The key is to do the best you can with God’s strength. If you make a to-do list of things you should be doing and depend on yourself to get them all done, chances are that you will end up in an unexpected place of failure.

Sometimes the easiest way to live a Christian lifestyle is to build a relationship with God through reading the Bible and praying, and then reflecting on your life through his eyes. How might God see your situation, and therefore, how should you? Don’t get overwhelmed by everything you should or should not be doing.

Getting Help From Above

As a Christian wife, you know that your husband should get the help that he deserves. You and your family deserve to be free from the turmoil that addiction causes. In order to achieve success and recover from such a serious illness, attending an inpatient rehab center that values your Christian beliefs is a smart and effective plan.

There are certainly options that will fit the needs of your family. Contact us at to speak with a professional about getting your husband treatment that can help lift the veil of darkness caused by addiction.

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