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Old 05-11-2015, 06:24 PM   #1 (permalink)
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counting sober days?


Hi,
Last week my AH allowed me to come to his doctor's appointment, which was a big milestone, and he promised his doctor and himself that he's staying sober for a month, attending SMART meetings, and doing the exercises that program recommends. (Then he wants to try moderation, which I can't even think about right now.) So far he has almost a week sober.

Is it helpful to a recovering person to draw attention to their days of sobriety? Is that why other programs emphasize one day at a time but also recognize the days, weeks, months, and years that someone has stayed sober?

I'm trying to figure out the best ways to support my husband. He makes a point of telling me that he's not drinking, and in the back of my head I'm thinking maybe we should start a star chart, like we used with our kids. I'm being facetious, but I guess what he's saying is he does want acknowledgement, right? From my side, I fear becoming his babysitter or referee, or in any way responsible for his drinking/not drinking. God knows, however, that I'd rather be counting days of sobriety than empty vodka bottles.

What have you all have found are effective ways of reinforcing your partners' sobriety?
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Old 05-11-2015, 06:45 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Well, maybe my husband is an anomaly, but he hates it when I draw any attention to his drinking or lack thereof. And, like you, I don't want to be his sitter. So every now and then I try to say a quick "proud of you". If he's in a mood to talk he will, and if not he just says "thank you".

My H is still dealing with a lot of guilt, shame and self hatred about his drinking though.

H said the whole one day at a time thing for him was to break it into doable chunks. He can't imagine being sober for a lifetime, but he can do it for 24 hours. And then another 24. And another. Every day is a decision to stay sober. He doesn't count days tho because of that darn guilt and shame. I wish he'd move past it.
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Old 05-16-2015, 01:20 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sauerkraut View Post

Is it helpful to a recovering person to draw attention to their days of sobriety? Is that why other programs emphasize one day at a time but also recognize the days, weeks, months, and years that someone has stayed sober?

What have you all have found are effective ways of reinforcing your partners' sobriety?
My husband didn't really keep track of days.. he was inpatient for close to 90 days so that was obvious.. LOL.. and the first year we celebrated a half year I think. from then on we have been doing something special for the yearly date.. it was 3 years last month. But it hasn't been so much about his days exactly.. its more about the recommitment we both have to creating a healthy life both mentally and physically, along with an ongoing commitment to each other and our family. We were separated for a while, so its oddly like an anniversary for us.

My husband doesn't keep track of days because he feels it holds a person in the past, and can keep people stuck in recovery instead of being recovered and moving beyond.

I think initially it can be helpful for some people. and I also think when you are sharing with others it can be helpful to include length of time so people know its do-able. 100 days can seem overwhelming when you just start out, so hearing people say I made it 200 days can be inspiring.

I cant imagine 90 days without chocolate.. and I don't say that as a joke... seems impossible to me.

I guess in the end, its all a very personal decision.
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Old 01-19-2016, 11:52 AM   #4 (permalink)
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When my alcoholic first got sober, I kept track, and would congratulate him and even ask that my family congratulate him too - I was just so proud of him!

But then he relapsed, and I imagined his humiliation if someone would have congratulated him on an 'anniversary' that was no longer applicable. He is already really hard on himself and I can only imagine that would make it so much worse. Additionally, my sister and her boyfriend went to rehab for narcotics, and when they had 6 months sober I sent a gift letting them know how proud I was. However, I found out later that the boyfriend had relapsed (and was getting clean again) and he felt guilty accepting my gift.

Now I don't make a big deal out of it - like the woman above, I just say "I'm proud of you" every once in awhile. And I probably won't say anything again to my sister's boyfriend....while I hope the best for him, its not my business, and I'd never want to make him feel bad again.
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Old 08-12-2017, 08:14 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by sauerkraut View Post
Hi,
Is it helpful to a recovering person to draw attention to their days of sobriety? Is that why other programs emphasize one day at a time but also recognize the days, weeks, months, and years that someone has stayed sober?
I give my wife a medallion every year on her sobriety date (21 years), but other than that, we generally don't make a big deal out of it. She basically doesn't talk about it -- to her, being a recovering alkie is like being allergic to shellfish or something; she just can't have it, realizes that, and behaves accordingly.

(Can I say "medallion" here in the secular section? I usually hang out in the Adult Children section, and go to meetings and stuff, but am also an atheist with secular cred going back several generations!)

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