During IOP recovery in Dallas we tell patients that holidays can be difficult. For some people, celebrations are a justification for alcohol and drug use. However, holidays also give you a reason to connect with loved ones and reflect on all of the wonderful things in your life that motivate you in recovery.
Valentine’s Day is one of those holidays. It’s an occasion that’s all about spending quality time with the people you love and letting them know how much they mean to you. When the person you’re in a relationship with is in an IOP program or going through addiction therapy, you can still celebrate the holiday together. You just have to be mindful to celebrate in a way that supports sobriety.
If you need some date inspiration, here are a few romantic ideas for sober couples that are looking to have fun together on Valentine’s Day.
Make a Home-Cooked Romantic Dinner (or Have It Delivered)
Going out to eat for a special Valentine’s Day dinner may not be the best idea since others will probably be indulging in champagne or another celebratory beverage. There’s also a good chance the server will offer an alcoholic beverage as soon as you sit down. At home you have complete control over the environment and don’t have to worry about that temptation.
Another benefit is that your date will truly appreciate the effort that you put into the dinner. Going to a restaurant where someone else does the work is easy. A home-cooked meal really shows you care because you are taking the time to make something yourself that you put a lot of thought into. You could also turn it into a fun couples activity and cook dinner together.
If you aren’t that comfortable in the kitchen you can always order a meal from a restaurant and have it delivered to your door. Some restaurants even offer special deals through apps like Uber Eats and GrubHub. Really want to go all out? Hire a personal chef to either cook at your house or deliver a personally prepared dish just for you. Or if you want something more social you can take a Valentine’s Day cooking class that’s alcohol-free.
Have Fun Like Kids
Valentine’s Day is romantic, but that doesn’t mean you can’t have some fun. Let your inner kids dictate the date. Go to a putt-putt course, play games at an arcade, race around a go-kart track or do all three. This is a great idea because it gets you to think back to the time before addiction was a concern.
Get a Couples Massage
Relaxation is always a great gift, and when you can relax together it’s even better. A couple’s massage is an intimate way to spend time together while also practicing self care. There are also no distractions or temptations that could trigger a relapse.
Take a Dance Class Together
There is something naturally sensual and intimate about dancing together. Taking a dance class is a healthy Valentine’s Day date that provides exercise, helps you learn something new and puts you more in tune with your bodies. You may even end up finding that you’re great partners with more things to like about each other out on the dance floor.
Binge Watch a Romantic TV Show
These days dinner and a movie dates are often takeout delivery and streaming any kind of entertainment directly to your TV. That’s why binge watching something romantic is a popular way to celebrate Valentine’s Day. Just try to find options that downplay depictions of alcohol consumption or drug use. If you are into period piece dramas, Bridgerton Season 1 and Outlander are good options. There are also comedies like Jane the Virgin or The Mindy Project. Only have a few hours to snuggle on the couch? Documentaries like The Loving Story and My Love, Don’t Cross That River are perfect inspiration for the holiday.
Physically Active Day Date
Daytime activities tend to be a good date option because people are less likely to be in a party mindset. If you choose a physical daytime activity that keeps you busy it’s even better. Physical activity, particularly when it’s out in nature, improves the mood and is very uplifting. Why not:
- Play a game of tennis or take on another couple in a double’s match.
- Take a hike on a local trail.
- Rent a canoe or kayaks and paddle out on a nearby lake or river.
There are a lot of ways to celebrate Valentine’s Day with sobriety in mind. What’s most important is that you choose activities that avoid triggers and are equally enjoyable for you and your date.
Lighthouse Recovery’s Intensive Outpatient Program in Dallas gives you the freedom to see loved ones every day and live independently while receiving addiction therapy. Contact us today for a complimentary assessment that will determine if an IOP program is right for you.