Committing to a life of sobriety prioritizes your friends and family over your addiction. In other words, putting your loved ones above your substance abuse is the ultimate act of love. To reward yourself (or your significant other) for making these sacrifices, consider some of the healthy Valentine’s Day gift and activity ideas detailed in the article below…
RETHINKING TRADITIONS FOR A VALENTINE’S DAY GIFT
Commemorating anniversaries is romantic. This often involves revisiting the location where you first met that special someone or recreating the meal that you enjoyed on your first date. Traditions are part of our shared history… but so is addiction.
As you embark on a life of healthy decisions, it’s often necessary to reframe your perspectives. This may include altering past behavior or scrapping it altogether. For instance, if you spent last Valentine’s Day on a double date with your hard-drinking friends, that may not be the best memory to replicate. If certain acquaintances can’t respect your newfound path towards sobriety, then you need to keep them at a healthy distance or else you run the risk of exposing yourself to their peer pressure.
It’s not easy to turn your back on friends or family, especially when you need support in your quest for a better life. If you ever feel alone or lost, be sure to lean on others with similar goals and obstacles. You could never replace your loved ones (nor would you want to), but you can always add new friends to the mix.
EXPRESS YOUR LOVE
Is your special someone a blunt, straightforward, no-nonsense type of person? Well then, why not buy him or her a gift that acknowledges exactly what’s going on? If addiction is the elephant in the room, call it out with a gift that shows how much you respect your partner’s choice to overcome addiction. This could be in the form of a heartfelt “One Day at a Time” pendant or an amusing mug that references your not-so-great life choices from days gone by. You could also celebrate your lover’s journey into their new lifestyle with a book that helps them maneuver the pitfalls and triumphs of sobriety in all of its glory.
Other gift ideas include memoirs from entertainers who have also endured the pain of addiction, guides toward meditation and yoga to help you focus on your inner peace, and coffee, coffee, coffee! Whatever you choose to present to your Valentine, it should celebrate the vibrant personality that they are reclaiming now that the haze of addiction is dissipating from their lives.
GIVE THE GIFT OF ADVENTURE
When recovering addicts reflect upon their greatest regrets, they often express remorse at all of the time they lost. They may have missed (or don’t fully remember) special events like birthdays, holidays, and other momentous gatherings with loved ones. While you can never fully recover the time you lost while in the throes of substance abuse, you can create visceral new memories by exploring the world with clear eyes and an open heart.
Specialty groups cater to the needs of recovering addicts by offering vacation packages that promote substance-free activities like skiing, surfing, and safaris of all kinds. Get out and get healthy!
MAKE YOUR HOBBY YOUR HABIT
But any serious addict can tell you that recovery is more than just a vacation from your demons. Maintaining a healthy lifestyle requires longevity, focus, and consistency. To succeed, you need to replace your addiction with more positive uses of your time. Recent studies prove that individuals who commit themselves to exercise or a similar discipline are more likely to avoid the curse of relapse.
Hobbies invite participation. If your betrothed develops a passion for cycling, join him or her on a romantic bike ride in the hills. Not only will it bring you closer together, it will foster and reinforce healthy habits that could help push the lure of addiction further from reality.
SUPPORT IS SEXY
Communication is the cornerstone of great relationships. If one partner is struggling with addiction issues, it’s imperative for the other member to listen. But it’s not enough to simply lend an ear; become an active part of the conversation. There are many ways to show your support, from helping your spouse find a sponsor to establishing life goals together to attending meetings with one another. Nothing says, “I’m here for you” like actually being there for them, in sickness, health, and everything in between.
Recovery isn’t easy. While your loved-one is tackling the greatest challenge of his/her life, the rest of society is succumbing to the worst substance abuse epidemic in generations. Celebrate your strength together this Valentine’s Day, and know that you’re not alone in your commitment to a better life.