Working on the recovery process as an alcoholic and/or addict means not only discovering how to live without abusing substances but also understanding what having healthy relationships in recovery with friends, family, and others looks like.
Healthy Relationships in Recovery
Active addiction made life skewed. Healthy relationships were foreign, but now that you’re in recovery you have the opportunity to work on building them. Whether it’s a significant other, friend, or family member you want to reconnect with, it can be beneficial to have an accurate understanding of the meaning of a healthy relationship so you can make the most of the relationship. When you can make the most of it, you will have authenticity and have full awareness of the relationship. So, what are the signs of healthy relationships in recovery when you aren’t active in your addiction?
An outstanding sign for relationships in recovery is that you show you care about the other party by giving them your undivided attention. When they speak, you actually listen to what they say and offer commentary and/or suggestions. By doing this, you are involved in the moment with the other person and can engage in the encounter with them.
Actually having compassion for the other person is a sign of obtaining healthy relationships in recovery because without caring for one another, there could be a sense of artificial friendship and falsehood.
When you feel secure and comfortable in a relationship, it can act as proof that it’s a healthy one. Feeling safe is important to have in any type of relationship because it’s greatly involved with trust. When you tell people information, you want to feel safe in trusting that it can stay between you. With this kind of emotional security, there’s also physical security that is equally as important that constitutes for healthy relationships in recovery. Knowing you can be around the person without being in harm’s way and that if anything were to happen to you, the person would be there to protect you can provide you relief while showing that the person genuinely cares for you.
Because the saying goes, “Honesty is the best policy,” it can be understood why being honest is a sign of a healthy relationship. Without honesty in any relationship, the relationship may be more susceptible to having the opposite reaction affect it. When lies, dishonesty by omission, and denial become involved, a relationship can quickly disintegrate into an unhealthy one.
Forgiveness is monumental for mature and healthy relationships in recovery. When people are willing to look from all angles and see sides to a story, they show how they are willing to overlook flaws in others, see what they are willing to work on, and make the effort to love them where they are at.
Healthy relationships don’t push one another down nor carry one another on each other’s backs. They turn to one another and are running at the same pace and build on one another’s strengths because they want to see each other grow.
When you have a positive relationship working in your life, you can actively encourage and collaborate together. This is healthy while when you were active in addiction, odds are you weren’t in support of any friends, family, or significant other’s ideas unless it involved substances. Now that you’re in recovery, you may be more inclined to encourage positive choices that promote healthier behaviors.
Allowing time for resolving conflicts is a mature way of handling situations instead of running from the problem, which you as an alcoholic and/or addict may have become accustomed to when active in addiction. Relationships are hard work. When people have opposing personalities, more effort is required and this can put strain on all individuals involved, so taking the time means putting in effort and that shows maturity.
Addiction can involve multiple facets; you could become codependent, which is unhealthy when you are constantly together without any time apart. Too much time together is overwhelming and creates friction if you can’t go without one another. It’s okay to have space.
Communication is key. By expressing your needs and the other person expressing theirs, a stronger relationship can be built. Better understanding can be found and you’ll both be able to provide accordingly.
Relationships are no walk in the park. Trudging through the process can allow you the opportunity to see how healthy relationships in recovery looks when you put in the footwork.