As addicts, we don’t have the best track record for being able to avoid temptations; with this understanding, it becomes important to understand non-substance related temptations which can lead to a regression in progress or even a relapse back into active addiction. It seems as though one of the strongest temptations for individuals in early recovery is that of entering into a romantic relationship. The general recommendation to newly sober individuals is to avoid relationships in the first year of sobriety in order to be able to allocate the time needed to take care of ourselves which is a task that is difficult enough in early sobriety. For those who have been in recovery for an extended period of time, the reasons supporting the notion to avoid dating in the first year seems blatantly obvious; for anyone who has done this work already, they know that committing time to address ourselves is so consuming in and of itself that the prospect of dating seems rather ridiculous. Because we are humans, however, and prone to desire connection, we often don’t heed the advice given as it pertains to relationships and dating. This isn’t to say that dating in the first year is 100% of the time going to lead to relapse, but it is to say that to the extent we allow our focus to shift from personal responsibility and evolution is the extent to which we allow our disease to slip in through the back door.
There are also those who enter into sobriety while their partner chooses to stay in active addiction. Although we may love our partners, making the decision to continue a relationship while one partner is sober and the other is not can have disastrous results, and almost always does. Trying to navigate between the world of recovery and the world of active addiction, especially while in early sobriety is not something wise addicts in recovery would recommend. This is important to understand because trying to walk this line almost always leads back to relapse. The combined temptation of substances and romance can be too much for the newly sober addict to handle, and understandably so! Although it may require the decision to sever ties, we cannot afford to perpetuate the fantasy that we can approach recovery with a “one foot in/one foot out” perspective.
Tree House Recovery of Portland, Oregon uses cutting-edge techniques in individualized programs to help men achieve freedom from addiction. Taking a holistic, sustainable approach to the inner and outer effects of addiction ensures you or your loved one will emerge with the confidence and skills to manage your addiction independently. No one is beyond help- our Admissions Counselors are available 24/7 at (503) 850-2474