Crouse Health Online: Wellness is just a click away.
Share Share
  |  Connect with Us: 
large
med
small
Text Size
 

Health News



Heavy Drinking Can Dry Up a Marriage If One Spouse Abstains

Heavy Drinking Can Dry Up a Marriage If One Spouse Abstains

11/29/13

FRIDAY, Nov. 29, 2013 (HealthDay News) -- Heavy drinking by one partner in a marriage increases the risk of divorce, but that's not the case if both spouses are heavy drinkers, a new study finds.

Researchers followed nearly 650 couples for the first nine years of their marriage and found that the divorce rate was nearly 50 percent for couples where only one partner drank heavily. Heavy drinking was defined as having six or more drinks at one time or drinking to intoxication.

The divorce rate for couples where neither were heavy drinkers and for couples where both were heavy drinkers was 30 percent, according to the study, published in the December issue of Psychology of Addictive Behaviors.

"Our results indicate that it is the difference between the couple's drinking habits, rather than the drinking itself, that leads to marital dissatisfaction, separation and divorce," lead author Kenneth Leonard, director of the University at Buffalo Research Institute on Addictions, said in a university news release.

"This research provides solid evidence to bolster the commonplace notion that heavy drinking by one partner can lead to divorce. Although some people might think that's a likely outcome, there was surprisingly little data to back up that claim until now," he added.

The researchers were surprised that the divorce rate for two heavy drinkers was no higher than for two nondrinkers.

"Heavy drinking spouses may be more tolerant of negative experiences related to alcohol due to their own drinking habits," Leonard said.

But this does not mean that heavy drinking by both partners does not damage other areas of family life. "While two heavy drinkers may not divorce, they may create a particularly bad climate for their children," he noted.

Leonard concluded: "Ultimately, we hope our findings will be helpful to marriage therapists and mental health practitioners who can explore whether a difference in drinking habits is causing conflicts between couples seeking help."

More information

The U.S. National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism outlines the health effects of alcohol.

Copyright © 2013 HealthDay. All rights reserved.

Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.

OF INTEREST:
 

Latest News

Crouse Hospital Appoints Chief Information Officer
more >

MedEx Bedside Prescription Delivery Service

Free service offers convenience, patient education at discharge.
more >

CrouseSports Express After-Hours Ortho Care

Immediate care of orthopedic injuries in kids and adults.
more >

Weight Loss Surgery

Is it right for you? Attend a free information seminar held twice monthly.
more >

Quality at Crouse

See how Crouse Hospital strives to provide the best in patient care.
more >

Cheer Up That Special Someone

Say get well or welcome a new arrival with a gift purchased right at Crouse.

more >

Make an Online Donation Now

Your donation of any amount helps support Crouse services & programs in a meaningful way.
more >

Shop Online Now

Say get well, thinking of you or welcome new baby with a unique gift from the Crouse Gift Shop.

more >