I’ve been in and out of 12-step recovery programs (like Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous) for almost 20 years.
I’ve had many periods of sobriety, from a paltry four months to a lengthy seven years (and everything in between).
There’s an old joke in recovery circles that goes: how do you know when a date between two sober alcoholics has gone well?
Punch line: They move in together before it's over.
The old “I’ve wrestled with my demons and won” line? How about a simple, “I’m a pretty hot colossal f**k up”?
It’s always a little awkward when a potential date wants to “meet you for a drink.” Telling them you’re sober feels like confessing to some horrible chronic STD.
Rosalyn Dischiavo, a sexologist and licensed addiction counselor, has a cheerier outlook: “There is another, more optimistic truth about love in early sobriety: it shows that you are healing. Date like it's 1955, whether it's with someone new, or with your current partner or spouse. Belisa Vranich—a clinical psychologist specializing in sex and relationships—all agree that there is no reason why addicts and alcoholics shouldn’t be dating other addicts and alcoholics.
Three focuses of therapy will be reviewed in this paper. Alcoholism is viewed as a disease and family members also have the disease of "codependence" (Cermak, 1986).
During the past two decades, I’ve dated both men in recovery and men who weren’t alcoholics (called “normies” by us in the program).
I’m currently single again, a sober divorcée in the strange world of online dating. How do you allude to your past (and present) situations without lying or scaring off a potential match?
In the disease approach, the family members are treated with therapy separate from the alcoholic.
This therapy encourages the alcoholic, the spouse and the family to reach outside the family for help.
For him, romance and recovery can be a highly successful combination—if done right.