When you’re in recovery it can be very exciting when you are in a relationship with someone new AND SOBER. You can finally feel everything and it makes the relationship that much better. You can feel things much more intensely when sober and it would only make sense that it can also make a break-up in recovery that much harder. This topic used to be a sore subject for me due to going through a rough break-up myself about two years into my recovery. Now that time has passed and I have moved on with my life, I find it only fair to share my experience with others.
I was in a wonderful relationship for about a year and a half in the earlier part of my sobriety. Me and the guy I was with were very much in love and couldn’t have been happier. There was something I didn’t take into consideration that my first sponsor had told me about relationships, though. She taught me that to be in a solid relationship, you have to have common goals and a common purpose. Although we were very much in love – love isn’t all you need for a relationship and I am very much aware of that now. Love does not equal compatibility; love does not solve all of your relationship problems and love is not always worth sacrificing yourself.
I started to lose myself in the relationship and became very unhappy. It was very clear that both of us were unhappy for a while but we stayed together out of comfort (and the fact that we lived together). Once we finally made the decision to split, I was a mess. I didn’t want to go to work, eat or leave the house. I took the break-up like it was the end of the world, and the truth is – it wasn’t. Thankfully, I stayed connected with the sober women in my life throughout my entire sobriety and had people I could call to carry me when I couldn’t carry myself.
There were a lot of unhappy nights and days but I kept going to meetings and doing what I had to do because as bad as it was, nothing was worth relapsing and getting drunk or high. As more time went by, it got easier and I got back into the groove of things and found myself again; the self I lost in the relationship I had. I had lost the most important relationship of all – the one with ME. No matter how awful things get, one thing has always been true in my recovery and that is that in the end I am always okay.
I don’t mean to sound super negative but these are the harsh realities I found in my first relationship/break-up. Anyways, the point I am trying to get to is that you can get through a break-up in recovery just like you can get through any situation without drinking or using drugs. You have to keep going to meetings, stay close to your support system and work an honest program of recovery.
If you or someone you know if suffering from an addiction to alcohol or drugs, please call toll-free 1-844-422-6926 today and get help.