I realize one of the keys to my successful sobriety has been to be around other people who don't drink. In particular I am talking about my husband- but it goes beyond just him. My husband is currently deployed and I have my kids with me. They continue to help me maintain my sobriety.
While thinking about my keys to success I started thinking about a trend that exists in my life. Since I divorced in 2001 I was fortunate to date some really amazing men. Some of them are still amazing, some are bullets that I definitely dodged (I know this thanks to successful Facebook stalking!). While I was dating I primarily sought out men who weren't interested in a long term relationship (I wasn't looking for one either) so it has been easy throughout the years to maintain a friendship. Not matter how long I go without talking to one of them we don't miss a beat when we pick up a conversation and talk about old times.
Interestingly enough- they have a habit of all contacting me around the same time. Like I have some beacon that puts out a Bat Signal shouting, "I am lonely, vulnerable, bored..." So lately this has been true. I have been receiving emails from some of the men in my past. I realize now that one thing we had in common at the time was a mutual love for drinking.
I don't think they are all alcoholics- they seem to have the ability to know when to stop- a sense I have never possessed. Either way- we spent a lot of time drinking. It's seems strange now to talk to some of them. I don't think I would have been able to stay sober so successfully if I had ended up with one of them. I think the party would have continued to roll right along.
Having a life partner who doesn't drink made this struggle less daunting. Being around someone who doesn't drink has been an integral part of my success. Especially in that first year where the habit of ordering/buying a drink was so strong. While I know there will times that I may be tested before he comes home 8 months from now- I can now (with a lot more conviction) volunteer to the the group D.D. if I decide to hang out with friends who drink.