Each person in recovery has a personal journey that includes their timetable to heal, receive support, regain confidence, and grow as a person. As you recover and decide to start dating, you may question whether you are ready to be dating someone in recovery.
Communicating a few things about your journey to sobriety may help ease some of your concerns and ensure your relationship gets off to a positive start. Below are some aspects of recovery to share with someone that you consider dating.
The Sanctuary Recovery Foundation was founded by people like you—people who needed help starting over. Contact us to learn how we can help you gain the confidence and skills to have successful relationships.
You Didn’t Choose Addiction
Someone you choose to date while you are in recovery can benefit from learning more about the science of addiction. Contrary to science, many people believe addiction is a moral failing or character flaw. However, no alcoholic takes their first drink intending to become an alcoholic. With a proper understanding of addiction as a disease, similar in many ways to other chronic diseases, your relationship can begin with mutual respect and appreciation for everyone’s struggles in life.
What Being in Recovery Means to You
Someone you date would benefit from knowing that you have not and will not arrive at a destination known as sobriety. Instead, it is a journey you are on for the long term. Although you will be in recovery for the rest of your life, you have made significant gains in rebuilding your life. The choices you make every day must be choices that keep you on the path to sobriety. It would be best if you were straightforward about where you are in recovery and how much commitment to a relationship you can afford.
You Have Triggers
Hopefully, you have reached the point in your recovery where you know and are comfortable discussing your triggers. Everyone in recovery has triggers, such as specific places, people, or circumstances. You and someone you date need to agree on effectively managing your triggers to avoid a relapse.
You Have to Live with the Consequences of Your Addiction
Sobriety, recovery, and a dating relationship do not erase the consequences of your addiction. Discussing the problems you have created for yourself can help ensure that your new relationship builds on a foundation of openness and honesty. You may need to give details about the physical, financial, vocational, family, and social issues that will require your attention. It is also crucial that there is an understanding that you are not expecting someone you date to fix you and your problems.
Resources to Help Understand Dating Someone in Recovery
A significant part of recovery is education. You undoubtedly know more about addiction now than you did before getting sober. Arming yourself with knowledge has been a powerful tool to help you understand yourself, your substance abuse, and the journey before you. Education can also help someone you decide to date understand you better. Below are several links to help give them insight into addiction and recovery.
Science Says: Addiction Is a Chronic Disease, Not a Moral Failing (Michigan Medicine, University of Michigan)
Sanctuary Recovery Foundation
You will be surrounded by other residents at The Sanctuary Recovery Foundation who want to live fulfilling and meaningful lives. Contact us to discover the benefits of living with others who will hold you accountable to pursue healthy relationships and remain sober.