Deciding if you should date someone who is recovering from addiction is similar to approaching any new romantic relationship, but with some specific challenges and factors to consider. Someone who has successfully completed outpatient addiction treatment might be a self-aware individual with life experience that will help them avoid the pitfalls of the past. Of course, it is also possible that the risk of relapse might keep you from developing the depth of trust and stability that you need in a romantic relationship, or your own past might play a role in your decision. Timing is also important. Addiction treatment centers usually recommend that those in recovery wait at least one year before starting a new romantic relationship. When an individual undergoes medically supervised detox or intensive outpatient treatment for addiction, they are starting a life-long journey of sobriety. During the recovery process, most people need to work through their past obstacles and learn new lifestyle habits. They also need time to recover from the physical effects of drug or alcohol abuse. Where is your potential date on this journey?
Here’s What To Expect While Dating A Recovering Addict (Hint: They Still Love You.)
It is difficult dating a junkie. You need more patience, tolerance and love than ever. But sometimes you feel so sorry for the other person it becomes difficult to walk away. Somewhere in between you want to help them, you want to try to make them better for you. There are certain times you have to get them legal and medical help too.
Recovering addicts can be humble and giving partners, but it’s important you know what you’re getting. Ask these questions before dating a.
When I was in my second year at college, I met this girl, Haley, at a party. She ticked a lot of the boxes for me — she was funny, easy-going, interested in hockey, and was able to spend time by herself comfortably. We got to know each other through mutual friends and despite the physical attraction not being instantaneous from either of us, we just seemed to gel personally, and before long we started seeing each other.
Things were good, and I remember saying to one of my roommates at the time that Haley was someone who I could develop feelings for. As a result, parties were a bit annoying for me with that many trashed people around acting stupid. Haley was also a different person once she settled in at a party — she would go from being laid back and chilled out, to this dancing wild woman. She was always the life of the party and just about every time, at some point in the middle of the party, she would pull me into a room, lock the door, and have wild sex with me.
In fact, one of my roommates pointed it out to me. He had a history of substance abuse of his own, so he knew what to look for. He pointed out that about 20 minutes after we arrived at a party, she would become a different person entirely, she was always incredibly hungover the next day despite not really being much of a drinker, and she was always broke despite having fairly well off parents who topped up her bank account frequently.
A Guide to Romantic Relationships in Recovery
If you are a recovering drug addict and single, you will probably eventually consider dating other addicts. At meetings, you come across a wide assortment of people, and some may seem pretty interesting or attractive. Before you jump in head first, you may want to consider whether dating another addict is a good idea. There are both good and bad points to consider.
Can you handle dating an addict? We’re not going to lie, recovering addicts do tend to carry more baggage with them than the average person.
Are you falling for a recovering addict? Are you curious to know more? Keep reading to learn the truth about addiction and what questions to ask before you start dating a recovering addict. Most of the time, the will to get better is not enough for a person to enter into a state of recovery. Addiction is lonely. Addicts may lose the support of family and friends.
How to Manage a Relationship With Someone Recovering From Addiction
You like that person a lot and you feel that you have a potential future together. It can be extra challenging if you are not familiar with anyone who struggled with the same issues before. How should you handle the situation? Is it worth pushing through with the relationship? Will you be able to make it work? These are just some questions that many people who date recovering alcoholics or addicts ask.
These provisos are in place to give addicts a fair shot at lasting recovery and to protect the people they might date from falling for someone who is.
Depending on your background and how much you understand about the disease of addiction, reactions will vary. How can the person you know now be the same person who abused drugs or alcohol? For others, it may be a little easier to accept, especially in cases where one has dealt either first or second hand with a substance use disorder.
Recovery is a long process. While everyone has their own unique timeline, it is most risky to get involved with a person in their first year of recovery. The first year should be dedicated to a lot of self-work and self-care, as well as learning how to create healthy routines. The more you are able to understand their addiction and triggers, the more you will be able to understand their emotional undercurrent. Rather, you should ask questions that show you want to gain a deeper understanding of them.
In many cases, people who have suffered from a substance abuse disorder hold their recovery and sobriety close to their hearts. If you are going to move forward with the relationship, then you have to be willing to accept the baggage that comes with it. They could have legal, family, health, or financial issues. Be honest with yourself.
Are you willing to accept the person for all their faults or not? If not, be kind and terminate the relationship before getting further involved.
10 Sad Truths About Dating A Drug Addict
For example, addicts can backslide and begin using his or her substance of choice once again, known as a relapse. All of that being said, you might meet someone incredible who has many of the traits you are looking for in a partner, but who might also be struggling with addiction or be in the midst of recovery. When someone is dating an addict a nd that partner is in the midst of alcohol or drug addiction, it is easy for the sober partner to get caught up in the whirlwind of the partner who is addicted.
The reason behind this thinking is that substance abuse can really warp how people see themselves and their life. Once in recovery, you are just founding out again who you are while also trying to form healthy relationships with people on a similar journey.
When you are in addiction recovery and begin to date someone it is important to share your addiction history at some point but when?
Focus on getting to know each other as people before rushing into a physically intimate relationship. It takes time for the brain and body to adjust to living a sober life. You can be a source of love, encouragement, and support, but the decision to remain in recovery belongs to your partner alone. If your attraction is based on a desire to rescue someone in need, you may be suffering from codependency.
This condition is characterized by an excessive emotional, physical, and psychological reliance on another person to boost your own self-esteem. Codependent relationships are not healthy for either partner. People in recovery often have a number of challenging issues in their past. To be a supportive partner, you need to have a solid understanding of substance abuse and recovery.
Visit sites such as DrugAbuse. You can also find a wealth of information resources at your local public library. Additionally, attending a support group for the friends and family of those in recovery may be beneficial. These groups let you learn more about addiction and recovery while providing a sympathetic ear when you face challenges in your relationship. People in recovery typically have a lot of meetings and appointments to attend. Time spent with addiction counselors and support groups is an investment in a better future for both of you.
Self-Care for People Who Love Addicts
Falling for someone might seem fantastic, but when the truth of drug abuse sets in it can become a nightmare. You find yourself wondering, are relationships supposed to suck this bad? Why is this person like this? Will they ever change? This is where you learn how to leave a drug addict.
The warning signs of drug addiction can be difficult to identify. Being in a close relationship with someone who may be suffering from substance.
Like most facets of an addiction, relationships play a cause-and-effect role, and understanding these dynamics is instrumental to controlling the addiction and saving the relationship. The question of how substance abuse can impact families is not a new one. In , the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration reviewed pre-existing literature and found that addiction has different effects on different relationship structures.
Extended family members might be put through stressful experiences of shame and humiliation if their connection to the addict and his or her behavior becomes known. When dealing with a partner, the consequences of a substance abuse problem generally fall into psychological and resultant behavior and economic categories. Money, for example, can be diverted away from savings and joint interests, and toward fueling a habit.
Psychologically and behaviorally , a partner could be on the receiving end of mood swings, reduced sexual interest and functioning, lack of engagement from their loved one, and other forms of emotional neglect. A substance abuse problem is insidious. The same is true when addiction issues arise in relationships. A drug or drinking problem changes the way a user thinks and perceives the world around him, making him redirect all his attention, energy and focus into satisfying the need for more.
How he interacts with his spouse or partner becomes a piece of that machinery. For instance, the PsychCentral blog explains that for addicts who combine drugs with sex, the sexual behavior impacts the drug use, and the drug use impacts the sexual behavior.
Signs You’re Dating a Drug Addict
The National Institutes of Health NIH report that 10 percent of Americans will struggle with a drug use disorder at some point in their lifetime. This number reflects how pervasive the disease of addiction is throughout the United States. While you may not be addicted to drugs, you may know someone who is, such a friend, family member, or significant other.
When you are dating someone who is addicted to drugs, you can experience a constant rollercoaster of emotions. The ride never seems to stop, and you likely suffer from anger, frustration, sadness, and stress as a result.
A lot can change due to drug and alcohol addiction, and successful rehabilitation entails rebuilding a person’s life. When it comes to relationships, the realities.
Here are some tips to get you started on the road to a healthy relationship with a recovering addict. Take time to really understand the full spectrum of where the person is in their recovery. During the beginning phase of recovery, he or she is still adjusting mentally, physically, and emotionally to their new life without drugs or alcohol. Are they in contact with a sponsor? Finally, understand that this person may have done things that led to serious consequences before getting sober.
They may have financial debt or have a DUI and are therefore unable to drive. Consider all these issues before beginning a serious relationship. You can also go to support groups for families and friends of recovering addicts. By attending these meetings, you can get advice and support from people in similar circumstances and find out even more about addiction recovery.
Be supportive and never make your new partner feel guilty about spending time attending meetings or keeping other recovery-related appointments. Be considerate of your partner when planning dates. Instead of taking your date to a party, music festival, or a bar, plan an outdoor activity or see a movie. Ask your partner about his or her triggers.
Dating an Addict in Recovery: How to Make Your Relationship Stronger
Broadly is partnering with the Global Drug Survey, the biggest drugs survey in the world, to find out more about women’s drug consumption, including how you buy drugs, use them, and what you would change about your own habits and the legal system. The Global Drug Survey takes about 15 minutes to complete. Want to have your say? Check out the survey site. For several years, she was in a relationship with a man who smoked weed and did coke almost daily.
The person in recovery may be healthy and self aware now, but used to be dependent on substances in the past, can be a hard idea to grasp.
Dating in itself is already stressful. The problems that typically plague standard relationships, from forgetting an anniversary to cheating, create an almost impenetrable barrier in the relationship. Add in a drug-ridden past or present into the mix, and the relationship is not only stressful, but also very unpredictable.
I’ve had three serious relationships in my life, and two of them were with drug addicts. Dating became a daily juggling act between love and drugs, between happiness and utter devastation. I was constantly in a state of limbo about the success of my partner and the future of our relationship. This is my personal experience dating a drug addict.
Although it won’t be the same for everyone, maybe some of you can relate. If you’re romantically involved with a current or former drug addict, just know it’s not all bad. Dating a drug addict, as with dating anyone, comes with pros and cons. Drug addicts, even if they have been clean for months or years, are difficult to trust. For part of their lives, addicts have been consumed with obtaining drugs and finding money to pay for them. Even if they swear they’re clean, trusting them completely is going to take time.
It’s hard to believe they could save money when the thought of buying drugs is always lurking in the back of their minds.