Many drug and alcohol addiction groups recommend that people wait a year before dating after sobriety. One of the main reasons cited for this is the risk that the joy associated with dating or beginning a relationship can feel like a “high,” acting as a replacement for a previous drink or drug of choice. Another risk is that the day-to-day tasks of being in a relationship, as well as the process of getting to know someone new, can serve as a distraction from what needs to be accomplished during the beginning months of recovery. Focus may shift to a new partner, instead of on recovery.
Fears About Re-Entering the Dating World
After the first year of sobriety is in the bank, it can be nerve-wracking to consider dating again. A person might feel they are out of practice when it comes to asking someone on a date or planning a fun outing with a new partner. They may also fear the risk of judgment from potential dates when dating after sobriety. Being open about your sobriety status fairly early on typically helps determine if the person you are dating is fine with your recovery status.
Guidelines for Dating After Sobriety Include:
- Choosing dates who are either sober or not showing signs of an addiction or alcoholism
- Taking any new relationship slowly, allowing affection and plans for the future to grow over time
- Being creative in activity choices for a date. Bars and restaurants that focus on alcoholic beverage sales should be avoided
- Maintaining a solid circle of sober friends with whom you can check in
The first year of achieving sobriety from alcohol or drugs is hard work. Afterwards, you may face what can be an intimidating idea: dating after sobriety. It can be hard to know where to begin, who you want to try dating, and what sort of dates won’t put your sobriety at risk. Alta Loma treats alcohol and drug addiction in our primary, outpatient, and extended care facilities. We go beyond just teaching our guests to navigate and embrace sobriety. We foster life skills designed to make going back into the dating world easier, and include outings during residential treatment that can serve as practice runs for when a guest is fully back into sober living on their own. Call our Austin, Texas, based facility at (866) 457-3843 today for help getting sober, maintaining sobriety, and integrating back into the healthy, happy life that you deserve. Dating after sobriety can be in your future!