Achieving sobriety is the most important step you can take towards gaining a normal and fulfilled life. Getting sober after years of abusing alcohol is very difficult to do and takes extreme self-control and discipline. Once you become sober, the last thing you want to do is expose yourself to things that might make you lose your sobriety. If you have a significant other who still drinks, you will need to have a plan to be around them while they are drinking so that you will not be tempted to drink.
The most important aspect of maintaining sobriety with a significant other who drinks is to plan for every situation, and be honest with yourself regarding your ability to control your actions. Realize and understand that this is going to be difficult, and prepare yourself for the hard times you will have to endure.
Can You Do This?
It sounds harsh, but the first thing you have to do to remain sober is put your priorities in order. Your sobriety must come before everything else, even your significant other. If you do not think you can handle living with a person who still drinks and will expose you to alcohol, then you must be honest with yourself and avoid the situation. That does not mean you have to end the relationship. However, you might need to delay moving back with your significant other until you are stronger and can handle being around alcohol in the home.
Set Rules For the Household
Before you decide to spend time with your significant other when they might be drinking, you will need to have a conversation with him to establish rules regarding the use of alcohol. If alcohol is going to be kept in the house, will it be kept out of sight? Will your significant other be allowed to drink in front of you, or will they need to leave the room to have a drink? What will the rules be when friends come over?
In addition to setting rules, it’s also important to explain your need for sobriety and your goals to stay sober to your significant other. Make sure they understand how important this is to you, and how their support is critical in your effort to reach your goals.
Make a Plan Instead of Reacting
Even if your significant other agrees not to drink in front of you or expose you to alcohol, you still need to be prepared to handle that situation in case it does happen. Eventually, you may go out to dinner with friends or coworkers, and your significant other might not think it’s wrong to have one drink while out. Remember, even if your significant other completely wants to support you, he will never understand what it feels like to be an alcoholic or your daily struggle to remain sober. To your partner, it might not seem like a big deal to have one drink in front of you.
In the event a situation like this does happen, you will need to have a plan on how to handle it. If you react emotionally, you risk making a mistake that could cost your sobriety.
Keep Regular Meetings to Stay on Track
Going to regular AA meetings will help you keep your goals on track when you are dealing with new challenges like being around your significant other when he drinks. Meetings will keep you focused and give you a place to work out your feelings about your significant other’s drinking.
While it’s very difficult to be around anyone who is drinking if you are a sober alcoholic, it’s not impossible. The important thing is to make the decision to stay sober no matter what, and always do what is best for your sobriety.