Guy I just started dating is in rehab...words of wisdom please
I just recently (like within the last month) started dating a guy...who started rehab a few days ago. Not sure what I think or feel or where things are at - haven't heard from him since he left. I view it as a good thing he was honest with me, but if we even continue to see each other, i dont know how i feel. I dont know if it makes a difference, as addiction is addiction, but he's there for alcohol. Sobriety is such a fragile thing; i think there would be a lot of responsibility invovled, especially for such a new relationship. Ugh. Anyone care to share some experiences or words of wisdom?
Good for him, for starters! I would personally let him have time to deal with this......Its not a good time to start a relationship. If its meant to be, it will, in time but not now. He needs to focus on himself now.
Had he been sober for a good long time, I might say eh, give him a chance maybe if you really really want to. But you've known him for a month? I would at best stay at the very casual friend level until I saw how it went (well actually I'd run like hell, but if I somehow felt I had to support him, it would be at the very casual friend level).
You stick around with a person who is going through this when:
a) its family
b) its a very close friend
c) you are engaged or married
If you are just dating, then I would say no. You can be nice and supportive but don't stick your neck out too much. If you get too emotionally involved before you know the outcome, you could end up getting hurt. Furthermore, he is facing a lot of issues now (I imagine) and that is going to make it difficult for him to be thinking clearly in a relationship.
For his recovery to work best, he shouldn't date for a year.
Besides, you REALLY don't want to be dating anyone in early recovery. (I mean this as speaking to someone who has just started dating this guy. My advice would be different if this was an established,long term relationship) Assuming he stays sober, his idea of who he is and what he wants out of life and a relationship may change.
Let this one go, and don't feel bad about it.
Last edited by Judysmom; Dec. 15, 2012 at 10:10 PM.
Run...and this is coming from someone who is completely in-love with someone who has been sober for two years. It was very hard at the beginning and it can take a toll on the relationship. In my case, it was very worth it and I would not change a thing, but it is like they have to discover who they truly are once they are sober. While they are learning about themselves, it can be too much trying to learn about someone else at the same time. Really, they should be sober about a year before entering a relationship. If you think he's worth it, support him and let him grow as a person. You will know if it's right.
hmm, I am thinking the person who comes out of rehab might not be the same one who went in... The guy must be pretty bad off to enter rehab....probably not his true self. I would really not invest myself into this much more. (and yes, I do think in the first few weeks of rehab, they don't get to contact anybody, much less new GF/BF) I tend to agree with those who said you might as well consider yourself single!
I agree with Alagirl on this one, in that the person who comes out of rehab will not be the person who entered rehab. You need to move on, and let him focus on recovery. It is a very common idea that the person leaving rehab should concentrate on their continuing recovery for the next year, and he simply won't have time for anything but work and recovery for a long time. And sadly, rehab doesn't always stick.
First let me say that it is a good thing that he started the process of recovery. Rehab is a great first step and I wish him all the luck in the world.
Second, let me say that my experience dating a drug addict in the mid-80's was very unpleasant and not something I would ever want to repeat. I was not very educated on addiction at the time I thought that since he willingly entered rehab that the hard part was over.
For the next year and a half he was in and out of rehab. He was moody, reactive and sneaky. He was a nice guy, but his addiction was so overwhelming that it clouded every aspect of his life and made him behave in not-so nice ways.
OP, if you just started dating this guy, cut your loses now. If he actually works the program like he is supposed to, he won't have the time or energy for a new relationship. He is going to have shaky emotions that are all over the map from one minute to the next. He needs to be able to do that without worrying how it will impact you or the relationship.
He deserves to have a recovery that is totally focused on him and what he needs and you deserve to have a boyfriend that can at least consider what you want and need.
Wish him the best, but end the relationship.
MP, as others have said, rehab is tricky. The hard part is yet to come when the rehab is over. I hope he can make it, but honestly many alcoholics go through a revolving door of sobriety.
My father was an alcoholic who spent the last 16 years of his life sober. My ex-husband went to rehab several times, but as far as I know it didn't take. Like TBRH, I learned from Al-Anon that I could not live with an active alcoholic in my life. I was too good at codependency. I wish my ex well, but I am grateful that he did the one thing I asked him to do -- no more contact with me, ever.