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Can Addicts And Relationships Coexist?

The number one focus of an addict should be getting sober. Anything that threatens their ability to get clean should be avoided. Relationships can provide a unique challenge. While addicts can have relationships, they need to be careful.

Avoiding enablers

An enabler is someone who condones an addict continuing to use, even if it’s not explicitly. They’ll ignore dangerous behaviors or try to shrug them off. When one is dating an addict, they need to be understanding, but they also need to be willing to put their foot down. If you’re dating an enabler, you might have trouble maintaining proper direction in your life. Speak with any potential partner about how important it is that they not enable you.

Dating for the right reasons

Relationships should not be a bandage that covers up existing problems. When an addict looks for love, it can, unfortunately, be as a means to only feel better about themselves. If you are feeling lonely, a relationship might help for a bit. However, you shouldn’t see it as the fix for all your problems. Doing so will only cause strife. A relationship should be started only if you’re willing to accept all the effort that goes into it.

Make sure the other person understands

Addiction is a disease that many people aren’t willing to call a disease. For a relationship to last for an addict, the other person must have a proper level of sympathy or empathy. This doesn’t mean they should condone your addiction, but they should be able to listen to you and support you through your struggle. It can help if they are also going through recovery, but you need to be careful about not creating a co-dependent relationship.

Proper communication

The qualities of a good relationship are universal. Whether or not you’re an addict, you still need to use proper communication with your partner. If something is bothering you, let them know. Should you be feeling depressed, anxious, or tempted to use, don’t keep it a secret. It can be a source of shame to admit you need help as an addict, but not speaking up when you need to could danger not only your relationship but also your health.

Relationships are very much possible for people struggling with addiction. With proper treatment, they can be made even better. If you are wanting to overcome your addiction, give us a call today at 800-737-0933

Listen to Podcasts
Season 3, Episode 31: 29 Years of Recovery w/ Andy V.