Tips for Navigating Sobriety in Social Situations
Posted March 3, 2017 by Christian Smith
Navigating the early stages of sobriety can be difficult, especially when there are so many social expectations surrounding alcohol use. Social situations involving alcohol, such as weddings and work conferences, can be difficult to avoid as well. Recently, The Fix published eight helpful tips for maintaining newfound sobriety from alcohol, even in social situations where drinking may be present. Here is a brief look at some of those key tips.
Stay close to people who know your situation.
First, it helps to surround yourself with people who already know about your commitment to sobriety. These people are not going to pressure you to drink, and they will help you feel at ease in larger social situations. If you keep these people close, others are less likely to offer you drinks in the first place.
Bring along a sober friend.
If you still do not feel entirely comfortable being sober in social situations, consider asking a sober friend to tag along with you. A sober friend will be able to see things from your perspective, and will feel less like a fish out of water with that friend nearby.
Keep a non-alcoholic drink in your hand.
In our society, it’s simply a social norm to offer someone a drink when they do not have one. So, if you want to decrease your chances of being offered a drink even more, make sure that you always keep a non-alcoholic drink on hand—even if it’s just water or juice.
Have a response prepared.
Chances are that the situation is going to arise where you need to explain why you are not drinking. Remember, foremost, that you do not owe anyone an explanation. With this in mind, be sure to spend some time beforehand thinking about how you are going to respond when someone asks why you are not drinking. You might choose to be straight up, simply saying that you no longer drink. Or, you might explain that you are trying to live a healthier lifestyle by not drinking. How much you share or don’t share is entirely up to you.
Be prepared to leave if necessary.
You should never feel pressured to remain in a social situation if it is simply too much for you. So, it’s a good idea to prepare to leave these situations if necessary. Come up with an excuse or two that you may use of questioned. You could be honest and simply say that being around drinking is simply too much for you. Or, you could simply keep things vague and say that you are not feeling well.