When you are at the beginning of recovery, it is best to stay away from social situations where people are drinking. When attending social events, whether they are work-related or personal, you likely will be offered a drink or asked why you are not partaking. There are several practical reasons you can use to explain why you are not drinking without having to tell others you are in recovery.
“I’m the Designated Driver”
In recovery, it is a bonus to be able to welcome the prospect of being the designated driver when going out. Not only does it lessen the temptation to drink, but it is also a logical reason to pass on the offer of a drink at social functions. Being the designated driver is the easiest way to delve into the conversation without having to go into details about why you are not drinking. You decided to do something honorable and responsible for your friends so that they do not have to deal with the moral burden of being intoxicated while driving.
“I Just Do Not Drink”
You do not have to have alcoholism to not want to drink. Some people do not like how alcoholism makes them feel in the moment or the day after. They want to feel a sense of control. Others may have witnessed alcoholism through their friends or family members and do not want to deal with the challenges their loved ones are experiencing. Whatever the reason is, not wanting to drink is nothing to be ashamed of. Be strong if you are feeling pressure to drink when everyone else is.
“I Do Not Like Who I Am When I Drink”
Think back to the times when you used to drink and how many people you hurt as a result. You probably thought you were out of control, irritable, or depleted of energy. Keep this list in your head if someone approaches you to get a drink with them. Remember that telling someone you do not like yourself when you drink does not “out” you as an alcoholic. No matter how you choose to respond to this question, you should not have to justify why you choose not to drink. Alcohol is not a necessary substance your body needs to survive.
Drinking can feel like a lot of pressure at a social engagement. If someone approaches you to have a drink with them, and you decide to decline, that does not immediately out you as someone in recovery. There are several reasons why a person chooses not to drink. It is important to stick with your reasoning. At Alta Loma, we understand the link between alcoholism and peer pressure. Located in Georgetown, Texas, we can provide you with 12-step programs, individualized therapy, life and coping skills education, therapeutic recreational activities, and a long-term continuum of care. Please give us a call at (866) 457-3843 to learn more.