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Has anyone kept the friends?

Discussion in 'Sobriety Tips and Inspiration' started by JoanMcWench, Feb 19, 2015.

  1. OhioTom76

    OhioTom76 Senior Contributor

    I pretty much burned bridges with everyone in my life who was also a drug addict or a drunk. There are a few I keep in touch with but only rarely, but I don't hang around with any of them on a regular basis any more.

    A few years ago I rekindled a friendship with a former friend who also drinks a lot and does drugs a lot, and it was a disaster. He was constantly criticizing me, talking down to me, and harping about how much of a drunk I was - never mind the fact that he drinks like a fish himself, is currently on his 4th DUI, and is a total mess. He's a cheapskate because he's unemployed and can't hold a job, so he always shows up empty handed to parties and just assumes he's going to get drunk on everyone else's dime. He also steals from everyone around him. Then he tries to cover it all up by gossiping to everyone else about me or another mutual friend of ours, trying to place all the blame on us when stuff is missing that he stole from others. He's using us as scapegoats for what a mess he is and how miserable he is within himself. I decided I'd had enough of it, so I cut him off. Now he has no one else to blame but himself.

    The other issue is a lot of these people quite frankly don't want to see you get better and make a better life for yourself. They often get jealous and spiteful when they see you turning things around for yourself while they are stuck in a rut - so they will either directly or passive-aggresively keep trying to bring you down. Those people are not your friends.
  2. TommyVercetti

    TommyVercetti Community Champion

    I have-most of them anyways. We stay in touch because we all got out at just about the same time and most of us had complications together. We treat each other as a support group of sorts, since we all learned from our mistakes. Those few who are missing have passed away because of complications as as well, and when we get together we try to remember them fondly.
  3. 6up

    6up Community Champion

    It is sometimes impossible to keep the friends, while you are with them you can not avoid using the same drugs they are using. Avoiding them does not mean that you completely don't take some time with them, you can be with the same friends while traveling or going to church. Do not meet them at the drug dealer's place or when they are out to buy drugs. Since we live in the same community you may never completely avoid them, but let them know that you were busy somewhere that is why you were unable to attend to them. If they can not understand your recent situation then you can try and completely avoid them.
  4. TripleD123

    TripleD123 Community Champion

    If your friends are unwilling to change their habits around you then they really aren't your friends. Plain and simple. Any addict has to cut out all of the people they associated with or else it will not work.

    My mother who was a meth addict for years still has friends that they used to "party" with. Even though she states she is clean and sober I will never be able to trust her because she still associates with these people. It really takes a toll on our relationship.
  5. missbishi

    missbishi Community Champion

    I hardly kept any of the friends. It wasn't so much that I was trying to avoid temptation, I just realized that, without drugs, we had precious little in common.
  6. pandabear1991

    pandabear1991 Active Contributor

    When it came to smoking cigarettes, I did have to stay away from these friends until I was sober enough that I could refrain from smoking socially. My Hubby and I both smoked at one point, even though my addiction only lasted 6 months. But now I can be around people, including friends who smoke cigarettes and not think at all about lighting one up. While I was trying to quit however, no. I had to stay away from family who smoked as well.

    I personally feel this may differ individually based on self-will and the drug itself.
  7. Charli

    Charli Community Champion

    I think this is a very important factor in this decision. If all you have in common is abusing substances then it probably is better off to just cut them off, but I find that sometimes friends are just recreational users who are even considerate since they share a bond with you, and those are worth keeping around in my opinion.
  8. shmangie

    shmangie Member

    As one may want to keep their friends who are also addicted and/or trying to get clean, I would not recommend staying in contact with those friends. It might seem like you can handle it and that you've got it under control, but it's true when people say that eventually you'll give in. Staying sober means new friends, new goals, new you!
  9. kana_marie

    kana_marie Community Champion

    I didn't keep any of my friends but the decision was mutual. It happened one of two ways... Either they cleaned up before I did and moved on with their own life and I guess we just really didn't have anything in common at that point ,or I cleaned up before they did and moved on with my life and realized we didn't have anything in common anymore. I guess we just all understood that without the drugs and alcohol we had no use for each other... Nothing left to offer each other.
  10. xTinx

    xTinx Community Champion

    My uncle was the only known hardline drug addict in the family. Cellphones weren't a fad then so the moment he was sent to rehab, he ceased communicating with his friends. He neither had their number or a pager through which he could drop messages for them. This lack of communication with his friends fast tracked my uncle's recovery. It's a good thing though that his experience set an example for his other user friends. They were able to recover on their own and after my uncle got out rehab, the reunion was as rewarding as ever because everyone was no longer dependent on drugs although they have regular drinking bouts.
  11. imperivm1

    imperivm1 Community Champion

    I personally think that it is possible but definitely not advisable. Keeping the ones who were possibly the primary cause for your downfall close to you, is simply daring the devil. You'd want to eradicate them from your life completely in order to avoid the possibility of a relapse, no matter how small it might be. It's the right thing to do.
  12. nm1180

    nm1180 Member

    Actually, I have not kept them. Unfortunately most of my friends are drinkers, and or addicts. I hang out with only a couple people now who are sober. My brother drinks beer, but I dont care if he drinks around me, I have no urge.
  13. adfnio

    adfnio Community Champion

    I had to get healthy and I totally separated myself from those individuals. If you are not supporting me then you are part of the problem. Drinking around me or enticing me to have a beer is not a real friend when they know I am trying to stay clean and sober.
  14. dyanmarie25

    dyanmarie25 Community Champion

    I was not really an addict, but I had friends who were chain-smokers and party-goers. Though we are so different from one another, we were able to understand and respect one another's choices and preferences. If you truly value your friendship, you won't do anything to harm that person.
  15. karmaskeeper

    karmaskeeper Community Champion

    I am still surrounded by the same people. I am still married to a husband that drinks. Staying sober is for me more of a mental detachment. physically I'm strong enough not to be pressed or influenced by others. Mentally I am in charge I know I have a great life, and will not put that at risk for the sake of a so called good time. I'm having a blast being sober besides I like being sober, and laughing at all the dumb ass drunks.
  16. FuZyOn

    FuZyOn Community Champion

    It depends on their personality and attitude. I kept every person that was positive and supported me through the hard times and I removed the bad ones from my life. It's good to keep friends around, they help a lot.
  17. Winterybella

    Winterybella Community Champion

    I don't see it likely or if likely easy to keep the same friends and make the necessary steps to recovery. All of the people I know who use, like to hang together and do their thing together. It's almost like they feed off of each other.
  18. crc3thebest

    crc3thebest Community Champion

    Well it is imperative to understand why are they your friends in the first place. Most times, you will come to understanding that you guys were friends because of the benefit of using. Hope this helps, God Bless!
  19. kassie1234

    kassie1234 Community Champion

    For me, it wasn't.

    I think really the only way to be able to kept the friends that were part of the addiction with you, is if they're all on the recovery journey too. That they truly want and express a desire to get clean and sober up.

    If that's not the case (which it wasn't for me) then from personal experience you really have to sever ties. As harsh and final as that may sound, sometimes you just have to look out for numero uno - and there's no shame in cutting people off for the sake of your own health, well being and recovery.
  20. Kessen

    Kessen Member

    I don't think it is possible. There is just no way that being around your addiction can lead to a successful recovery. It is important to have a support network when recovering, but leaving yourself open to any triggers is bad.