If you’re new to sobriety, being a dating alcoholic can feel like a nearly impossible task. On the one hand, anyone who just got sober is typically advised to stay single as long as possible to get used to their new lifestyle. To add to that, they’re often told to avoid other people who are newly sober as well—or in some cases, to avoid dating alcoholics altogether, no matter how long they’ve been sober. On the other hand, there are plenty of unique problems to dating so-called “normies” as well, one of them being that they could increase your chance of relapse. Though it goes without saying, being a dating alcoholic is a tricky situation.
Although this presents its own unique issues, modern dating is fraught with a whole host of its own issues as well. While many couples may have met through friends or in random situations in the past, more and more people these days seem to be meeting online or through dating apps. To be successful in that arena, you’ll need to finely tune your own profile, carefully look at a bunch of other people’s profiles and ultimately hope they are who they say they are in their description. And generally speaking, normies aren’t dating alcoholics all that often. Fortunately, there’s a new solution that can make being a dating alcoholic a whole lot easier.
Anyone who is a newly dating alcoholic navigating the dating landscape ought to try a dating service specifically for alcoholics. Aside from dating in very early sobriety (as in a couple weeks or months, for example), in some cases having alcoholics dating alcoholics makes a lot of sense. “Two ex-addicts that are 100% romantically compatible will provide an amazing support system for each other,” says Stefan Simonovic of First Beat Media, a company dedicated to offering online services for dating alcoholics. “They will thrive and grow and enjoy life together, guided by the same goals and dreams.”
While there have been plenty of negative stories reported within sober communities about “13th Stepping,” it’s important to put that fear into context. In general, that refers to a power imbalance between a more experienced sober person trying to date a newly sober person who doesn’t have their bearings yet. Though the rules on sober dating are sure to vary from person to person, general reports suggest that waiting for about a year before getting into a serious relationship of any kind is a good idea for recovering alcoholics. For anyone who doesn’t take their time with this process, the results can be dire. “It can be a recipe for disaster,” Simonovic says, “especially if the partners don’t share the same core values and beliefs. Unfortunately, it can also increase the risk of recidivism.”
Once two people are stable and responsible enough to date, and when they can both commit to a sober life together, using a service for dating alcoholics makes a lot more sense. Like any other dating app, the service has users fill out their own profile with pictures, interests and hobbies before having them match with others in the area. “Our dating service offers numerous perks, such as the possibility to send flirts and private messages,” Simonovic says. “You can also apply various filters to find potential dates based on distance, age, gender and much more.” With the same ease of any normie-oriented dating app, users can log on, have conversations with fellow dating alcoholics and see which ones they’d like to meet up with. After seeing if there’s chemistry in person, they can begin a romantic connection with the security of knowing that they’re both on the same page when it comes to sobriety and maintaining a healthy lifestyle.
No matter what kind of dater a person is, online services for dating alcoholics make a lot of sense. Alcoholics aside, it’s an unavoidable fact that alcohol (and sometimes even drugs) play a significant role in modern dating. According to studies, new couples who are out on a date can consume as many as six drinks between the two of them to feel comfortable with one another. Beyond that, the study also found that increased alcohol use decreased the possibility of intimacy for men towards women, while it increased it for women towards men. Needless to say, that kind of dynamic is a terrible one for anyone looking for a serious connection, let alone recovering alcoholic.
While being a dating alcoholic may have caused all kinds of anxiety before, this new dating service takes all the stress out of the situation. All you have to do is log on, fill out your information and get ready to meet your newest date. Whether you’re looking for something casual or something serious, you can have the peace of mind that you’ll never have to awkwardly disclose that you’re not drinking to a date who is ever again. And if the conversation does come up through this service, you’ll know it’s with somebody who understands.