Now That I'm Sober, Can I Date Someone Who Drinks? | HuffPost Life
Having been an online sobriety coach for over two years now (and Clearly this drinking thing wasn't as big of a problem as you thought it was. . Don't worry, you can still go out with friends or coworkers for a round This doesn't happen right away, and you can't set a date or time as to when it'll happen. Five years sober and I'm still navigating these situations. The life I had before I quit drinking was a lot like Groundhog Day; I was always waiting for it to begin and always It looks like we're experiencing playback issues. .. People that don't want to date you because you don't drink aren't your people. Many come into recovery having been isolated to the point that romantic Still others wait a year, and then turn to dating apps like Tinder and.
Sure, drinking can be fun, but have you been drinking alcohol since the day you were born? Have you had fun before ever having a sip of alcohol in your life? That right there proves you can have fun sober.
You just need to try.
Guide to Sober Dating
Well, there were lots of options considering you have a LOT of spare time when you stop drinking. That added up to getting nine to fourteen hours of my life back. And with that time came a lot of thinking about not drinking…which was stressful, which made me want to drink more, which made my anxiety spike.
I knew I had to fill that time with something and figured out through trial and error that doing productive things was the way to go — things I felt some sense of accomplishment from, made me feel rewarded, allowed me to relax, or made me feel good. Not things that simply kept me busy. We all have tough days.
The point is that you felt that alcohol was no longer serving you, it was a problem, so you made a change and cut it out of your life. The boost in confidence I got was fleeting and false but it was a confidence I didn't have without alcohol. I would constantly wonder how I got myself in situations that compromised my self-worth. Oddly enough, I could usually laugh it off and blame the booze or call a friend with looser morals than myself and use them as my moral compass to feel okay with my behavior.
That all eventually stopped working and I was just left hating myself for my bad decisions and inability to address my drinking problem and make a change. I had my last semi-normal relationship in before my addiction took a turn and alcohol became the most important relationship in my life. Everything else was secondary. Friends were getting married and starting families and I was just looking for the next alcohol-induced adventure. I went on some dates with some seemingly decent guys whom I had met on eHarmony.
But it was just too exhausting to try and pretend to live up to my online profile. I was a fraud and it didn't take a good guy long to figure that out. I feel really fortunate that I wasn't in a relationship at the time I hit bottom and took up residency at a day treatment facility for alcohol addiction. Some people advised me not to get into any relationship during my first year of sobriety.
I thought that was ridiculous but wanted to stay sober so I followed their direction. A little after a year of being sober, I went on Tinder and made up for lost time. I was going on coffee date after coffee date with guys that old drunk dating Allison would have been attracted to. Unless the topic has been broached, avoiding alcohol can be misinterpreted as a sign of only mild interest, with no intention of raising the stakes.
Communication in the nascent stage of dating is never easy, especially when both parties bring their own insecurities and doubts to the table.
The Salon writer ruminates on how, when he and a potential date were not clicking, he longed for the feeling of having alcohol in his system, the freedom and the energy it provided to get through moments of awkward silence.
Even for all the trouble their drinking caused, they never had problems meeting other people. For a drinker, alcohol makes people feel more interesting, says the Salon writer. Take that out of the equation, and dating when sober can seem confusing, frustrating, and even boring by comparison. Top of Page Couples in Therapy Vice Magazine conducted interviews with two couples on how difficult sober dating and relationships can be.
In both couples, one person is a recovering drinker, and their respective partner drinks a lot. The sober partner in one of the couples admits that falling in love with a woman who actively drank was a threat to his sobriety; seeing how much fun she had when she was drunk, using her intoxication as a cover for his own desire to indulge, kissing her and smelling the alcohol on her breath, all pushed his abstinence to the brink.
Alcohol is, officially and scientifically speaking, a social lubricantbut sometimes, merely being in the presence of someone who is drunk — or drinks in general — can be a lubricant all on its own.
When the dynamics of gender psychology are exacerbated by substance abuse and the rehabilitation thereof, the perspectives can become even starker.
Sober people, for example, are still working through their past issues with alcohol; being around a drinker and being involved with a drinker can make for an uncomfortable relationship. Eventually, it may come down to accepting harsh realities.
As most people in recovery will say, becoming sober entails living in a world that is not sober, and a dating scene that is inherently linked to alcohol consumption to make things happen. Jezebel writes of the importance of communication. When the limits around alcohol are established, the people in the relationship have a better chance of being more comfortable in their new roles. A couple with this dynamic will have to spend some time determining where the boundaries are; the partner in recovery will be made to feel self-conscious if the drinking partner feels constrained and embarrassed by not being able to have a glass of wine with dinner, especially in the company of friends.
This may entail that the couple do things differently; some events might even be attended by the drinking partner alone, if there is danger that the environment may be too triggering for a relapse. Top of Page The Realities of Sober Dating For all this, it is not impossible for a drinker and a sober person to date; like any relationship, however, it requires work, patience, communication, and understanding.
Ironically, the sober partner may have an advantage. Psychology Today explains that people who have been through addiction therapy have, by nature, spent a lot of time learning how they can improve themselves. Through counseling, they have understood how to identify and process their emotions. A person who has been through recovery has made a deep commitment to living out values of honesty and integrity, and basing life decisions on achieving healthy goals and honoring values, not on short-term pleasure.
Sober people know how to take care of their mind, body, and soul. Some do it through prayer, meditation, or yoga; others through exercise, hobbies, or community involvement. Recovery lasts for a lifetime, so sober people are in a constant state of improving and bettering themselves. While this is very useful in controlling the impulse to drink, it can also make a very firm foundation for a relationship with moderate drinkers. But even moderate drinkers bring their own perceptions and ideas about addiction to the table.