The question has been posed to me as to whether or not a newly sober person can maintain their sobriety while living with an alcoholic who is drinking.
This is a tremendously difficult situation to be in. It is extremely painful and full of mental and emotional torture.
If you have become sober then you have achieved a difficult goal. In order to maintain it, you need support. You need the support of people who understand how difficult it is to stay sober. You need the support of people who boost your self-esteem.
You also need emotional support. You need family and friends that are on your side and can understand how you feel. It is important to be around people that boost your self-esteem. You need to feel worthy of the effort to stay sober.
An alcoholic partner who is drinking , is not able to be emotionally available for you. They cannot sympathize with your feelings. They cannot understand what it is like to maintain your sobriety. It is a daily struggle to be strong and find alternate ways to relieve anxiety and stress.
The alcohol is a way of escape from anxiety and stress. If you are no longer drinking then you need other ways to reduce stress and help with depression.
The alcoholic is still drowning themselves in alcohol as a way of escaping reality and responsibility. They are dumping their responsibilities on you. They are not only leaving you alone, in your time of need but they are adding on the stress of dealing with them.
It is not a good situation. If you are trapped in this type of homelife then you need extra support from other people.
It is bad for your mental health to be in this situation. It is easier said than done to tell you to get out. Financial entanglements are hard to unwind. Emotional tangles are even harder.
You want the person to be proud of you. You want them to hold you and comfort you. You need them to praise you and encourage you for each day you stay sober, as you become comfortable with your new behavioral patterns.
The sad truth is – they won’t do any of these things for you and are not going to in the near future.
It seems so cruel to say that. But misleading someone is not kind, especially if it will cause them to seek something, only to be disappointed and crushed.
Someone who is newly sober needs to find new things that they will enjoy to do. Activities outside of the house might help. Going out with friends after AA meetings is good.
Do not let the partner discourage you from attending meetings. You need to keep up with your healing.
It would be very easy to feel sorry for the alcoholic. You may also feel angry at them or sad that they don’t love you enough. All of these feelings are normal and you are allowed to feel what you feel. But don’t let the alcoholic’s bad addictive behaviors draw you in.
They may resent you or perceive that you think that you are better than them, now that you are sober.
Do not let them manipulate you by making you feel guilty for being sober.
They are choosing their own path of demise. Sadly, they are choosing it over you.
No matter what the partner tells you – You are important and your path to maintaining a happy, fulfilling, sober lifestyle is a good path. If you keep going forward there will be good things that await you.