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A "trigger" is something that prompts one to think about, crave, and ultimately relapse on drugs/alcohol. Triggers vary depending on the alcoholic/addict and his/her history and patterns of use. For example, some alcoholics cannot go to bars after they get sober (at least for a long time), because it makes them think about the "romantic" aspects of their use. Others are fine in bars, because they always drank alone in their apartments.
Other common triggers for use are sex (or unhealthy emotional entanglements), other addictions to things like shopping, food, and work, or being in touch with former using friends. While each addict has much in common, each addict has differing patterns of use. It is suggested that you make a list of your past use "triggers" and be sure to avoid them at all costs. If you need to be in a particular situation (and as the Big Book of AA says, "if you have a legitimate reason for being there") then check with sober friends and/or a sponsor to get suggestions for coping.
It is also recommended that those of you in your first year of sobriety read the book Living Sober: Some Methods AA Members Have Used for Not Drinking, as it has a lot of details and suggestions regarding common trigger situations and alternative coping skills (other than alcohol/drug abuse)
|Sheri Ann Richerson|