Your friends have been trying to set you up with someone for a while. You finally decide to give in to their advice about starting up a dating profile. It doesn’t take long for you to match up with someone and you hit it off right away through messaging.
That’s when they hit you with what is a deal breaker for some. They’re a recovering addict. While this raises some concerns with you, this person has given the most interesting conversations that you’ve had in months.
You would hate to give them up. Instead of cutting off contact with this person you’re coming to like, try out these tips for dating a recovering addict.
1. Listen Carefully to Them
When you first start seeing someone who is a recovering addict you need to listen to everything that they have to say about it. It’s a good chance to learn about what they are going through and discover ways that you can potentially help them.
There is also a red flag that you need to be watching out for. If they say that they used to be an addict but they are completely sober now, you may want to stop seeing them.
Recovery is a process that goes on for years and years so somebody who tells you they are magically cured isn’t being honest with you. Honesty is the foundation of any longlasting relationship. If they can’t be upfront about their recovery process than what else could they be willing to hide from you?
2. Research Addiction
On top of listening to your partner about their experiences with addiction, it’s important to also do your own research. You’ll find out more information on how you can help them through the process. This also shows that you care and you’re invested in making the relationship work.
There are plenty of resources available to you for this purpose. You can head to your local library and pick up books, or visit a few Government websites. You can even scroll through online forums and read other people’s addiction stories.
3. Don’t Date Them If They Are in the Beginning Stages
When you find someone interesting you’ll be tempted to start up a relationship right away. This is especially true if you’re a hopeless romantic. If they are in the beginning stages of their addiction recovery you’ll want to hold off for a little bit though.
Going through recovery is a stressful time for anyone. You don’t want to pile on the extra stress that comes from starting up a new relationship. This doesn’t mean that you have to cut them off though.
Keep in touch with them via messaging apps. Once the stress from starting recovery calms down you can meet up for little outings like heading to a bookstore or cafe. Take things slowly.
4. Accepting Their Past
If things get really serious between you and your newfound love interest they will eventually spill the beans about things that they’ve done in the past. These things may not be very pretty so it’s best to prepare yourself now.
Depending on what they’ve done you then have to decide if you would still be comfortable with seeing them. Just keep in mind that these bad things were all done while they were under the influence.
These actions may not necessarily define them now. Still, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t keep your guard up a little bit depending on what kind of person they were.
5. Unfinished Business
Most people who are recovering from addiction have a little bit of unfinished business to take care of. This is usually from bad decisions that they made financially when they weren’t exactly sober.
On top of possible debt, they may have also landed themselves a few criminal charges and put a little bit of strain on their relationship with their family.
If you’re really serious about being in a relationship with this person you’ll have to be prepared to help them conquer these lasting issues and by proxy making them your problems to some degree. This could be in the form of helping them with their debt or going with them to patch things up with family. Just make sure you don’t do so much that you forget to take care of you.
6. Their Recovery Comes First and Foremost
There could be a time when your significant other has to cancel a date due to going to a recovery meeting. It’s important that you understand the situation and don’t get mad over dropped dinner plans.
Their recovery process comes first and foremost so you’ll need to work around their schedule to make plans. It’s no different than them working around your work schedule.
7. Learn Their Triggers
A recovering addict is going to have a few triggers. It’s important that as you date them you figure out what these triggers are so you can help them avoid them. This isn’t’ always as simple as not ordering an alcoholic beverage in front of them.
You may have to avoid an entire neighborhood because they used to get drugs from it. You could even have to help them push away family and friends that are bad influences.
Tips to Keep in Mind When Dating a Recovering Addict
Dating a recovering addict isn’t easy but depending on the person, it could be completely worth it. Instead of ruling someone out because of their problems use these tips for dating a recovering addict to develop a fulfilling relationship for you both.
Is someone you love in the need of an addiction recovery center? Contact us to tell us about their situation and get them the help they need today. We’re here for you!