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Discussion related to living as a Catholic in the single state of life. As long as a topic is being discussed from the perspective of a single Catholic then it will be on-topic.

Tobias and Sarah's story is from the Book of Tobit, and his journey is guided by Saint Raphael.
Learn More: Tobias & Sarah as led by Saint Raphael

Dec 8th 2012 new

David, congratulations!!!! A close family member of mine has also struggled with this cross, and has been sober for 14 years.

For me, with my personal situation, this would be something to ponder but I can honestly say it wouldn't be a deal-breaker. I think some important conversation would need to be had, and alot of praying together. But I think that marriage, when centered on Christ as God intended, is intended to strengthen the faith of both spouses - what a great encouragement for any problem we may face!

God bless, David!

Dec 9th 2012 new

Good on you David for posting such a bold topic in the forum!


I haven’t had much experience dating someone in recovery. I've worked with persons undergoing some form of “recovery”, but this was in the mental health field. I am not sure what would be an appropriate time for someone to tell me that he is in recovery. I guess that sort of self-disclosure should take place if the relationship was transitioning to a more serious level and if both persons discerned that they wanted to play a major role in each other’s lives. After saying that, you still are unable to control how the person would react to your self-disclosure. I think some women may have a misconception of the term “recovery” and may negatively interpret it as the person still has some significant unresolved issues with alcohol. Personally, I would want to know how committed this person was to the recovery process and what role I would have to play in supporting this person. Is it just to attend meetings? I am a social worker and I would not want to be an emotional crutch for someone I am dating. I am not saying I would be unwilling to support this person emotionally, but I would hope that the person in recovery would be emotionally stable and self sufficient in other areas as well.

Hmmmmmm, I am not sure about the person still attending meetings scratchchin I think I would want to know the purpose of the meetings and the role the person played in the meetings. I don't think I would have any problem attending meetings once those burning questions were clarified. If I am serious about the person I would want to share in all areas of the person’s life that are important to him and I would hope to be supported in a similar way.

I definitely think the longer a person has been sober is better, however in addition to looking at the length of sobriety; I would also look at other contextual factors such as is the person employed? What sort of relationship does the person have with friends or family? Does the person have a depth of spirituality that complements mine?

As an aside, I think your story makes for one powerful testimony Praying

Dec 9th 2012 new

Sincere congratulations on ten years. AA saves so many lives.


As to your question, it would not phase me personally at all. I'm on the other side of the door. I attended my first Alateen meeting at age 11. I fell away from the program on and off up until two years ago. I remember hating it and thinking that I was exchanging one crutch for another, but I finally got over that. Pretty much anyone who knows me more than superficially knows that I attend meetings every Thursday night. Yes, I have scheduled my classes around it to be out in time to get there. Those meetings are vital to my mental health and I don't think there is anything to shy away from. If a person does not get why I need to be there, they will never have any true understanding of how I became who I am. They'll never understand Step 12 and that is one of my ministries. My dad was sober 25 years when he passed away. I credit AA to having the best father in the world for those years. I credit AA for the fact that my daughter never saw my dad take a drink, and never having any concept of what he was like when he was drinking.


I don't know what the time factor is for discussing it. It is simply who and what I am. We both know that (don't quote me - might be 2) 1 in 4 people know a person with a problem with addiction. We are EVERYWHERE. Be open, be yourself. Anyone who has a clue will hear it in your speech and not have to be told. I remember meeting one of my nearest and dearest friends. We were attending a formation class together several years ago. He used a slogan naturally during conversation. I smiled and said, "We speak the same language." To this day, when I am missing my dad most, I can close my eyes, listen to this gentleman speak, and have my dad back for a few minutes. God will let you know when timing is right. More importantly, if you're paying attention, God will show you the person you are meant to share your life with. It works if you work it. heart



Dec 11th 2012 new

(Quote) Daniele-678076 said: Good on you David for posting such a bold topic in the forum! I haven’t had mu...
(Quote) Daniele-678076 said:

Good on you David for posting such a bold topic in the forum!


I haven’t had much experience dating someone in recovery. I've worked with persons undergoing some form of “recovery”, but this was in the mental health field. I am not sure what would be an appropriate time for someone to tell me that he is in recovery. I guess that sort of self-disclosure should take place if the relationship was transitioning to a more serious level and if both persons discerned that they wanted to play a major role in each other’s lives. After saying that, you still are unable to control how the person would react to your self-disclosure. I think some women may have a misconception of the term “recovery” and may negatively interpret it as the person still has some significant unresolved issues with alcohol. Personally, I would want to know how committed this person was to the recovery process and what role I would have to play in supporting this person. Is it just to attend meetings? I am a social worker and I would not want to be an emotional crutch for someone I am dating. I am not saying I would be unwilling to support this person emotionally, but I would hope that the person in recovery would be emotionally stable and self sufficient in other areas as well.

Hmmmmmm, I am not sure about the person still attending meetings I think I would want to know the purpose of the meetings and the role the person played in the meetings. I don't think I would have any problem attending meetings once those burning questions were clarified. If I am serious about the person I would want to share in all areas of the person’s life that are important to him and I would hope to be supported in a similar way.

I definitely think the longer a person has been sober is better, however in addition to looking at the length of sobriety; I would also look at other contextual factors such as is the person employed? What sort of relationship does the person have with friends or family? Does the person have a depth of spirituality that complements mine?

As an aside, I think your story makes for one powerful testimony

--hide--

Hi Daniele,

If you and I were sitting across the table at a restaraunt and you asked me about attending meetings, I would tell you that I go for the maintenance of my recovery, and the fellowship. I'm not ashamed to say that the majority of my friends are in 12 step meetings, but that does not make 12 step meetings my life. I didn't get sober just so I could go to meetings in church basements. That being said, I have fished, biked, hiked, and built houses with me 12 step friends. Moving up through recovery is a powerful process that welds together friendship. I know others in certain meetings that have financed golf vacations down in georgia and florida. To look at them one would think that they're just a bunch of guys on vaca--you wouldn't even notice they were not drinking.

I would at least say something to that effect if we were sitting across from each other and pray that it wouldn't freak you out. biggrin wave

Dec 13th 2012 new
I agree with Lorraine. Some things are left alone. When you reach the stage in your relationship that you have achieved a certain level of comfort and trust, the you can discuss that it was part of your past.
Dec 13th 2012 new
David: You've received some great insights from all the ladies here. I would like to congratulate you as well on your 10th year and ask that God continues to watch over you especially in this area. Honesty is vital in any relationship. Although it is not advisable to bring this up on a 1st date, I think if the topic behind this arises at any point ( after the 1st date) I think it is good to state the facts but not the details of your experience. I would rather a guy focus on the positive aspects of his life. Honestly, I am not sure if I would be open to date a guy in recovery, although if it was 10 years I would not have an issue. I am also comfortable if the guy does not drink, that is a healthy habit and safe one too:) Just mu POV. May God guide you in your decisions on when and how to reveal this to a date.
Dec 17th 2012 new

(Quote) David-820720 said: Okay, here's a serious question that has been on my mind.I'm not ashamed to s...
(Quote) David-820720 said:

Okay, here's a serious question that has been on my mind.


I'm not ashamed to say that I have been in recovery thanks to the help of a certain 12-step program and the Grace of God. To be exact, I have been in sober for 10+ years. While I'm very proud of that fact, it has at times been a deal breaker for women. I'm not one who goes bragging to the world that I've been in recovery for this long, but I do want her to know as it is a big part of my life. I get don't mind when people ask why I don't drink--I simply say I'm allergic to it--but it can be nerve racking when she asks (especially in a season where others drink). So my question is more for women, but anybody can give their two cents.

When would be the right time for you for someone to tell you that they are in recovery? Would it put you off that the person still goes to meetings after so many years? What if he invited you to a meeting? I guess I could flip flop this question as ask guys if it were a woman who is in recovery?


One more thing: Is 10 years enough sobriety? Believe it or not, it isn't enough for some women.

--hide--


Congratulations on 10 years. I have 7 years. All through the worst of my drinking years (I was a solitary drinker - at home alone), I never lost the faith or stopped praying and attending Mass. I taught RCIA and adult ed classes in my parish. But I never felt like I was getting any closer to God. Working the 12 Steps helped move my faith from my my head to my heart. It caused a deep interior conversion. It also gave me empathy, (a larger mneasure of) tolerance, and a supernatural outlook.


The 12-steps are steeped in the Catholic tradition. Although neither of the 2 co-founders of AA was Catholic, they were strongly influnced by Catholic spirituality early on. In particular, Sr. Ignatia at St Thomas Hospital in Akron and a jesuit priest in NYC strongly influenced the spirituality of AA. It claims to be a spiritual program of revovery. it doesn't prescribe a faith or require members to believe in pany particular religion. it encourages members to use their own religion and to be quick to see what religion has to offer. So it can be used by people of other faiths. Bill Wilson, one of the co-founders, often went to Eucharistic adoration or prayed by tabernacles although he never converted to catholicism. Sr Ignatia always brought him to the tabernacle in the hospital chapel whenever he had some difficulty and he continued the practice.


David - To answer your question, it's best to disclose this fairly soon in a relationship. I'd say the sooner the better. You don't need to lead off with it, but get it said fairly early on. You don't want her to think you're hiding something.


Dec 17th 2012 new

(Quote) David-820720 said: Okay, here's a serious question that has been on my mind.I'm not ashamed to s...
(Quote) David-820720 said:

Okay, here's a serious question that has been on my mind.


I'm not ashamed to say that I have been in recovery thanks to the help of a certain 12-step program and the Grace of God. To be exact, I have been in sober for 10+ years. While I'm very proud of that fact, it has at times been a deal breaker for women. I'm not one who goes bragging to the world that I've been in recovery for this long, but I do want her to know as it is a big part of my life. I get don't mind when people ask why I don't drink--I simply say I'm allergic to it--but it can be nerve racking when she asks (especially in a season where others drink). So my question is more for women, but anybody can give their two cents.

When would be the right time for you for someone to tell you that they are in recovery? Would it put you off that the person still goes to meetings after so many years? What if he invited you to a meeting? I guess I could flip flop this question as ask guys if it were a woman who is in recovery?


One more thing: Is 10 years enough sobriety? Believe it or not, it isn't enough for some women.

--hide--
Sadly, a "you must have a drink" mentality has set in. Those who abstain from alcoholic beverages are often looked at as unsociable, or it is assumed that the person must have had a problem with alcohol in the past.

Definitely NOT SO.

There are some people (a minority from a subjective view) who simply don't like the taste of alcoholic beverages. Others have had a problem with it in the past. Another group can't tolerate alcohol because it interacts with medications they are taking. Whatever the situation is, it's difficult to explain to others. It's frustrating trying to explain these things to people; some are even shunned.

For a short time, I answered "non-drinker" in my profile. One woman who seemed interesting in many respects wrote back after I contacted her and said she "enjoys a glass of wine on her patio". The message was clear -- if I don't join her and do what she does, I'm off her list. So much for that. Perhaps she assumed I had past problems with drinking which isn't the case.

An alternative is to order a non-alcoholic beverage. People really can't tell what is (or what isn't) in there. If questioned, I simply tell people that alcohol reacts badly with blood pressure medication and I have to refrain. The reality is we shouldn't have to offer any explanation at all -- it's our choice. Choosing not to drink isn't something weird or anti-social. Yet it is not perceived that way.

For people who have struggled with addictions, it's dangerous to have even one drink. At a local homeless shelter, there are several people who have counted the days of sobriety. It's especially difficult for them because they're at the low end of the economic scale and could easily fall back on alcohol to ease their miseries. It's a tough climb to get where they are now, having been even lower at their worst. They remember those worse days, which is a factor in their continuing recovery.

Those of us who choose not to drink can enjoy our natural highs in life, have a good time at social events, with the added advantage of not suffering the next day, and better yet, being able to remember if we had a good time or not.

You have a good track record with your 10+ years. Yet, you still take things a day at a time, as it should be for all of us no matter what our circumstances are. I think most women will look at the overall picture with respect to a person's past problems (drinking or otherwise) as long as there is solid evidence the problem is solved. Possibly, if you are rejected because of it, there's a good chance that person hasn't been exposed to anyone who has had a problem and realize how difficult it has been to get rid of it.

I have respect for those who have successfully kicked their addictions. They've experienced something we haven't and have had to climb mountains. I wonder if most of us, faced with the similar circumstances, could accomplish what you and others have. Addictions are so easy to fall into because physical dependency. They've fought battles and demons and won.

Of course, people directly or indirectly created their own problems which is another matter, but past a certain point their addictions take over. I think this is the area that people fear about others -- that they won't be able to deal with many of life's other problems that can arise unexpectedly.

Not all of us can say we've had to climb mountains that high.

Dec 17th 2012 new

wave Well, if ten years isn't enough for a woman, you need to just move right along cause she isn't the right one for you.

scratchchin I'd really rather have you tell me right from the start. That way I know so I won't do something stupid like offer you a drink with dinner.

Part of taking care of someone from the very start is knowing important things about that person, and I'd say that is relatively important.

So, just mention it casually in conversation. It really should NOT be a show stopper.

Dec 18th 2012 new

(Quote) Ray-566531 said: Sadly, a "you must have a drink" mentality has set in. Those who abstain from alcoholic b...
(Quote) Ray-566531 said:

Sadly, a "you must have a drink" mentality has set in. Those who abstain from alcoholic beverages are often looked at as unsociable, or it is assumed that the person must have had a problem with alcohol in the past.

Definitely NOT SO.

There are some people (a minority from a subjective view) who simply don't like the taste of alcoholic beverages. Others have had a problem with it in the past. Another group can't tolerate alcohol because it interacts with medications they are taking. Whatever the situation is, it's difficult to explain to others. It's frustrating trying to explain these things to people; some are even shunned.

For a short time, I answered "non-drinker" in my profile. One woman who seemed interesting in many respects wrote back after I contacted her and said she "enjoys a glass of wine on her patio". The message was clear -- if I don't join her and do what she does, I'm off her list. So much for that. Perhaps she assumed I had past problems with drinking which isn't the case.

An alternative is to order a non-alcoholic beverage. People really can't tell what is (or what isn't) in there. If questioned, I simply tell people that alcohol reacts badly with blood pressure medication and I have to refrain. The reality is we shouldn't have to offer any explanation at all -- it's our choice. Choosing not to drink isn't something weird or anti-social. Yet it is not perceived that way.

For people who have struggled with addictions, it's dangerous to have even one drink. At a local homeless shelter, there are several people who have counted the days of sobriety. It's especially difficult for them because they're at the low end of the economic scale and could easily fall back on alcohol to ease their miseries. It's a tough climb to get where they are now, having been even lower at their worst. They remember those worse days, which is a factor in their continuing recovery.

Those of us who choose not to drink can enjoy our natural highs in life, have a good time at social events, with the added advantage of not suffering the next day, and better yet, being able to remember if we had a good time or not.

You have a good track record with your 10+ years. Yet, you still take things a day at a time, as it should be for all of us no matter what our circumstances are. I think most women will look at the overall picture with respect to a person's past problems (drinking or otherwise) as long as there is solid evidence the problem is solved. Possibly, if you are rejected because of it, there's a good chance that person hasn't been exposed to anyone who has had a problem and realize how difficult it has been to get rid of it.

I have respect for those who have successfully kicked their addictions. They've experienced something we haven't and have had to climb mountains. I wonder if most of us, faced with the similar circumstances, could accomplish what you and others have. Addictions are so easy to fall into because physical dependency. They've fought battles and demons and won.

Of course, people directly or indirectly created their own problems which is another matter, but past a certain point their addictions take over. I think this is the area that people fear about others -- that they won't be able to deal with many of life's other problems that can arise unexpectedly.

Not all of us can say we've had to climb mountains that high.

--hide--


I find no one notices that I'm not drinking alcohol. Once my company had a big shindig in Las Vegas. They had an evening reception and the whole point of it was to drink. I had the bartender fill a big rockglass with club soda and put a couple olives in it. Everyone thoght I was drinking. But usually I just stick to some sort of soda.

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