Dating in Recovery: When Do We Start and Know When We’re Ready

In Recovery by Tree House Recovery

Let’s revisit the topic of dating in recovery. During the first few years of recovery, dating is often considered taboo. If you’re itching to date, it’s important to remember to approach the dating world from a place of self-awareness. Be honest about where you’re at in your recovery, your expectations, and the reasons you want to date. Relationships of all kinds, especially in early recovery, should be supportive and healing rather than stressful and complicated. Here are a few things to keep in mind about the reasons behind the dating taboo in early recovery.

Dating can be a distraction from your recovery. Especially in the early days of this journey, it’s imperative that your main focus is sobriety. While dating can be wonderful and healthy in later phases of recovery, it often serves as a distraction during a time when your recovery should be your main focus.

When you’re newly sober, it can be tempting to fill the void that used to be filled by drugs or alcohol. It’s not fair to you, your recovery, or your significant other. No one wants to be used as a replacement! It’s best to date later in recovery, when you can be sure you’re not reaching for a substitution for your substance of choice.

Dating in early recovery can increase your chances of relapse. Relationships are emotional and in early recovery, we’re learning new and healthy ways of coping with distress and disappointment. Love is complicated and you don’t want to add more complications to the already intense beginnings of sobriety.

It’s important to redefine healthy relationships. When we enter the sober journey, we’re often coming from a place of unhealthy relationships. Before jumping into dating, redefine love, healthy relationships, and communication for yourself so that you can put your best romantic foot forward. There’s plenty of time.


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