6 Tips to Help Those in Recovery Avoid Alcohol During the Holidays
The holidays are a time for family and friends to gather and share laughs, memories – and perhaps a drink or two. But for people recovering from an addiction, all that alcohol often present at special events can be worrisome.
Holiday parties are when many alcoholics fall off the wagon. There just seems to be alcohol everywhere, sometimes even at the office. It can be very difficult, especially for people who have only recently stopped drinking.
Holidays can be a gateway to your past life.
Alcohol may feel like it helps to deal with memories of a troubled childhood with a dysfunctional family but it really doesn’t.
Every day for an alcoholic is a challenge, but over the holidays it can be overwhelming. People don’t realize when they offer drinks to people over the holidays how difficult it is for some people to say no. Real alcoholics know they can never have just one.
For those who want to stay sober during the holidays, here are a few tips from Alcoholics:
1. Find something to do that doesn’t involve alcohol
Skip any drinking occasions you are nervous about. If you are really concerned about an event, just ask yourself if you really need to go. But you don’t have to just sit home.
Take your family out and look at the holiday lights or find another activity that gets you in the holiday mood without alcohol.
2. Leave early
If you know you will be tempted to drink at a party, plan in advance to tell people when you arrive that you only stopped by briefly and have somewhere else you need to be.
3. Go with a sober friend
There is safety in numbers, and you can help each other should you be tempted to drink.
4. Carry around a soft drink
If you already have a drink in your hand, people are less likely to ask you if you want a drink.
5. Avoid known risks
If you know your brother is a heavy drinker, for example, stay away from him. If you know the same party last year was full of excessive drinking, just stay home.
6. Create new traditions
It can be a downer if you have to skip all the holiday fun. So come up with some of your own. Buy a new board game, go look at the holiday decorations or host your own small non-alcoholic party with sober friends.
It has been many years since I was an alcoholic, but the rewards of life now are much better than any drink I ever took.
Once you’re sober, you can allow yourself to begin to dream about life again, the way you did when you were a kid. That doesn’t mean those dreams are going to be easy to achieve, but at least you can look at them and say, ‘I’ve got a shot.
Want to have a happier, healthier marriage?
If you feel disconnected or frustrated about the state of your marriage but want to avoid separation and/or divorce, the marriage.com course meant for married couples is an excellent resource to help you overcome the most challenging aspects of being married.