Dating after recovery can be both exciting and intimidating. As you’ve progressed through your journey to sobriety, you’ve probably wondered how you will adjust to social situations as a newly sober individual — including dating. You may have also wondered how someone new in your life will react to knowing about your past addiction. The following tips can help you find ways to cope with your newfound sobriety while developing a new healthy relationship.
AVOID THE DANGERS OF DATING AFTER EARLY RECOVERY
Everyone wants someone to love, and when you’re fresh out of recovery, you may feel both lonely and vulnerable. While being in a relationship can ease loneliness, it’s important to be aware of the reasons you are starting to date in the first place — to find a partner that you can enjoy life with and who understands the importance of your sobriety.
Jumping into a relationship could pose a danger to a recovering addict. In fact, meeting someone new (and the romantic feelings that come with it) can mimic the same euphoric reactions that are experienced from a high. Be cautious of trading one addiction for another.
Here are some ways to overcome loneliness:
Seek out supportive friends and family members that you can talk to and spend time with.
Try calming exercises such as yoga or walking.
Spend time with your pet — pets can be a great support and comfort to those who are experiencing loneliness.
WHEN SHOULD YOU TELL YOUR NEW PARTNER ABOUT YOUR ADDICTION RECOVERY?
Upon completion of the recovery process, you’ll feel ready to meet new people and start dating again. It’s not uncommon for addicts to struggle with the right time to tell a new romantic partner about their past — and understandably so. Addiction comes with many untrue stigmas and you may be hesitant to disclose your recovery journey for fear of judgment. The decision is ultimately up to you and when you are ready, but hiding your past struggles with addiction may not be the best way to start off a relationship.
HOW TO AVOID TRIGGERS ON YOUR DATE
When choosing a place to go on a date, what inevitably comes to mind are locations that involve alcohol. From the traditional bar scene to a fancy restaurant, alcoholic beverages seem to be everywhere on the dating circuit. To avoid triggers and temptations, try something new like a trendy coffee shop, a local bookstore, or hiking.
Here are some other fun activities you and your date can participate in:
Attend a poetry reading.
Visit a live music venue.
Watch a local theatrical play.
Visit an art museum.
Shopping at a farmers market.
Go bike riding.
Plan a picnic.
Visit a zoo or animal sanctuary.
Dating after recovery may seem overwhelming, but it is possible to succeed at finding the right partner.
If you or a loved one are struggling with addiction or feel the onset of a relapse, The PAC Program can help. We provide young men between the ages of 18 and 30 a safe place for drug and alcohol addiction recovery in Arizona. Contact our Arizona drug rehab today to get more information about how we can get you on the road to recovery.