When it comes to relationships, the realities and rules of abstinence after addiction become all the starker.Whether as a client or a companion, a guide to sober dating is very important in understanding how matters of the heart change.The person in recovery can vicariously enjoy all the good and bad that comes with that territory, without a single drink having to be consumed.
It is not an easy lesson for anyone to learn, let alone someone in recovery, but the way to a healthy relationship is to take it “very, very slow,” in the words of a sexoligist and licensed addiction counselor.
Whether repairing the bridge to a spouse or romantic partner, or forging ahead with a new person, a sober person has to give the relationship a chance to develop.
This may mean putting off intimacy for a (long) period of time until the partner has made a clear commitment to the relationship, and both parties are on the same wavelength; this may mean a lot of dates and meetings where there is minimal physical contact.
It could mean that the dates aren’t very “romantic” to begin with.
It can mean missing out on parties, it can mean being forced to cope with life’s struggles and challenges stone cold sober, and it can also mean being alone.
quotes a 26-year old former heroin addict as saying that “getting sober is pretty lonely.”The apparent cure for the loneliness is often sought in likeminded people.
One person confessed to that even after four years of Narcotics Anonymous, she couldn’t help but go back to the same strain of “train wreck relationships” that characterized her years as an addict.
After the inevitable relapses, she recommitted herself to her treatment program.
The idea of fellow program members combining their sensitivities andweaknesses is fraught with danger. For anyone going through treatment, relapse is always a possibility.