The Primary Hurdles that Women Face in Overcoming Addiction
Both women and men go through traumatic emotional and physical consequences of addiction to alcohol or drugs. However, some studies have revealed that women in particular face some barriers and hurdles in dealing with addiction, seeking treatment and getting effective treatment to help them in overcoming the addiction problem. Below are some of the unique problems that women face in rehabilitation.
The majority of the women who opt to go to rehabilitation are at a disadvantage from the start. Studies have shown that women who become addicted to drugs or alcohol tend to have lower socioeconomic status and lower education levels. They frequently look for treatment after referral from the judges or friends, family or co-workers. On the other hand, most men are referred to rehabilitation centers by employers, doctors or the legal system.
Many women also treat drug addiction as an issue related to stress and assume that it will go away without seeking treatment. Women usually have more responsibilities in their families in raising children and so might think that they cannot leave their family for a long time to seek treatment or may be in denial about how severe their dependence problem is. Women who are addicted to alcohol or drugs frequently have depression and anxiety that make them maintain off treatment or might have undergone some emotional, sexual or physical abuse which leads to feelings of shame and trauma.
There is still a lot of stigma that’s attached to women who abuse drugs or alcohol particularly women who have children or who are not pregnant. With no help to look after their children, work and family duties during recovery and rehabilitation, women are most times discouraged from searching for treatment. The social shame and potential disapproval from family, friends, co-workers, and employers are sufficient to keep many of them out of treatment completely, and the fear of losing the custody of their kids is another demotivator.
Other women might be intimidated by other obstacles from the treatment facilities themselves. For instance, a woman who experienced emotional, physical or sexual abuse from a man may be afraid of the idea of seeking treatment from centers where men work. Since women might have major responsibilities for childcare and might also be working or do not have insurance coverage, treatment facilities may not be possible due to financial reasons.
Fortunately, there are treatment centers which recognize that women’s needs are not the same as men’s demands and it might be advantageous to have a program that’s specially designed to overcome these obstacles and let them find treatment. Several facilities offer programs that focus on helping women to deal with addiction.