When someone asks if you want a drink
Updated: Mar 13, 2022
I keep hearing from people all over to keep writing. Keep sharing my story. And at times, it feels as if the only person I am writing for is me. The only person listening is my subconscious. The only person reading this is me. And that is okay, because it helps anyway. I go back and read my old entries and they keep me grounded. But every now and again, I hear from someone across the country or the world, and it lights a fire in me. It ignites something and keeps me going, even when I feel like the days are long and I haven't been my best self. A little message will pop up or an email, and I realize that there are others going through the same stuff as me.
The early days of sobriety are tough. That could be the hardest part. The loneliest part. So if you are in that stage. I see you. I hear you. I feel every bit of it with you. Your stories help me as much as mine may be helping you. So please send me messages and emails. I want to hear from you.
One comment I saw on one of the pages I follow on instagram today - that I never had a hugely hard time with, but I know many struggle with in the beginning. What do you say to people what they ask if you want to drink? Or when someone says "Why aren't you drinking tonight?" "Can I get you a glass?"
It can feel incredibly isolating and awkward, and you often feel like everyone is staring at you and wondering this. Usually, nine times out of ten, people could care less and are usually only focused on themselves and THEIR next drink. If you have a seltzer in hand or some sort of glass of water or soda, chances are people won't say anything. If they do - it is likely because your NOT drinking is making them uncomfortable, so again - that is on them, and NOT YOU! The role of you suddenly not drinking in someone else's life is throwing them off. Perhaps you were a regular in the drinking scene in a group of friends, and your BFF is suddenly all up in your business wondering why you aren't drinking on a Saturday night. She zeroes in on you and gives you a hard time because she isn't aware of what is going on with you. This has a lot to do with her discomfort in you suddenly stopping and shining a light on her behavior. You are disrupting the flow and regularity of the evening. That's okay. It is to be expected. But it doesn't make it any easier on you.
As long as you have a few ideas up your sleeve, you can do it. The confidence will come. A simple, "I am not drinking tonight," works fine. "I need a night off." Here are some other lines depending on the scene and how well you know these people. You can use these ideas for as long as you need to in order to build up your confidence socially. You will get there.
"I am doing a dry ___ (month, week, etc)"
"I am doing a cleanse."
"I have a busy day tomorrow / early morning."
"I have a headache."
Others once you feel ready to share a bit more:
"I'm retired from drinking."
"I drank enough in my 20's to last me a lifetime."
"I stopped drinking."
I have heard a good friend who doesn't drink tell people "If I drink I will be on this table dancing naked in an hour, and no one wants to see that." So, eventually you can start to tell people - "I am sober." That comes in time and when you are ready to share that piece of your life with others. Or you never have to share it at all. That is up to you.
If you want - reach out to me on instagram or send me an email. I am always around to hear how you are doing.