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Come Together to Fight Addiction

What to Know About Dating an Alcoholic

a couple on a date laughs together and discusses what it means to be dating an alcoholic

Sometimes, knowing how to support a loved one in recovery is hard. Whether married or dating an alcoholic in recovery or someone who needs alcohol addiction treatment, it’s essential to know the signs of addiction and how to support someone through treatment and recovery. Learning how to spot addiction and provide nonjudgemental support can help you, and your loved one thrive.

If you’re dating an alcoholic in recovery or are looking for treatment options for a loved one, our team can help. A Better State provides holistic, outpatient treatment in New Hampshire. With a range of evidence-based and alternative treatment options, our accessible programs are here to help you thrive. Call us now at 781.412.1488 or visit us online to learn more about our alcohol addiction treatment options.

What Is Alcohol Addiction?

The best way to understand someone’s experience with addiction is by learning more about alcohol addiction. Like other addictions, alcohol dependency happens when the brain and body rely on alcohol for chemical processing. This occurs when alcohol replaces naturally produced chemicals. Like other substances, prolonged drinking can cause the brain to stop making necessary chemicals. Because alcohol is easy to get and a significant part of American social life, it’s challenging to know when social drinking turns into an addiction. Drinking alcohol can become a way to self-soothe difficult emotions, stress, and memories.

While alcohol may cause temporary relief, it depression the nervous system, increasing the risk of depression and worsening mental health. When people develop an alcohol addiction, their brain and body experience withdrawal symptoms after alcohol leaves the bloodstream. Withdrawal is the first sign of addiction and is often ignored. If someone you love is struggling with alcohol, craving alcohol, or frequently drinking alone, it may be time to seek professional help.

Am I Dating an Alcoholic?

It’s hard to know when frequent drinking becomes an addiction. When alcohol enters the bloodstream immediately slows down the body’s functions. Over time, this can have lasting effects beyond drunkenness and hangovers. Warning signs you’re dating an alcoholic include:

  • Mood swings
  • Craving alcohol
  • Aggressive behavior
  • Thinking about alcohol
  • Secretive drinking
  • Irrational behavior
  • Drug-seeking behavior
  • Sweating, shaking, confusion without alcohol
  • Chronic dehydration

Drinking alone, drinking during the day, and focusing on social obligations around drinking are often early signs of alcohol addiction. If your loved one struggles with mental health, they are at a greater risk for developing alcohol addiction.

Dating an Alcoholic in Recovery

Beginning treatment is only the first step in recovery. Addiction treatment and recovery are not linear. This means treatment can take many paths, and recovery is always a work in progress. If you’re dating someone in recovery, it’s important to set healthy boundaries, know their addiction triggers, and understand their relapse prevention plan. Educating yourself about the connections between trauma, stress, mental health, and alcohol use can help you understand your loved one’s past and present. Remaining nonjudgmental, communicative, and honest is also essential. Never enable a loved one who relapses.

Learn More about Alcohol Addiction Treatment In New Hampshire

Dating is never easy. Whether your loved one is in recovery or needs help, providing nonjudgemental support while caring for yourself is vital. It’s impossible to support someone else when your needs aren’t met. If you’re ready to learn more about how to help someone you love in alcohol addiction treatment or recovery, our team is here to help.

Our family therapy program can help you understand alcoholism, mental health, and the effects of trauma. Working with a therapist can improve communication and decrease the risk of relapse. No matter what your loved one is struggling with, we can help. Contact us now at 781.412.1488 to learn more about our holistic outpatient treatment programs.