I just had what I think is a pretty sound and viable realization.
For people who used to use, being around a person who is still using is almost like a sanctioned and supplanted way to use yourself. You talk to them, you interact with them – you FEEL drunk being in relationship with them (or high, etc.). A great friend and I once agreed that we were more experience junkies than sex/love/substance addicts. Sometimes addiction is about escape from the mundane, from the painful, from the scary. I have wondered why it is hard for me to pull away from people who have less resolve towards evicting substance use from their lives – but I am now thinking that my own predilection towards engaging personally and closely with folks may be its own addiction.
What keeps going through my head though is the phrase – talking to you makes me feel drunk.
I have never thought of this before.
I can relate. After many years sober, I found myself in Alanon meetings, where we look at exactly what you are referring to.