No icy lager, no sundowners: could you handle a sober holiday? Travel

Sources of holiday stress include unresolved family relationships and interactions, financial stresses, relationship stresses – or lack of relationship and holiday loneliness. By the next Christmas, it was easier, and by the next, I had zero desire to drink — although I know not everyone’s experience will look like mine. But for me, I couldn’t imagine wanting to tarnish the holidays with another drunken episode — or a hangover. At some point between the birth of my youngest child and his second birthday, my wine drinking ramped up. I seemed to have it all together — I was “high functioning,” you could say — but eventually I couldn’t even fool myself. The “edge” I continued to take off every evening got bigger and bigger until wine wouldn’t even touch it.

Given all the holiday parties you might be expected to attend. SGS babe Stephanie Chivers also runs a low-cost online coaching programme that teaches you how to stop drinking and start living. An activity-led holiday – whether it’s walking or swimming or climbing or skiing or diving or yoga – makes it easier to avoid the fridge or the bar.

Sober Holidays Tip: Coping With the Holiday Season Alone

This might mean opting for an old holiday movie, hot coco and popcorn on the couch. For those who feel ready to brave the office holiday party, be prepared with coping mechanisms if you encounter triggers and have an exit strategy if things get too intense. From Halloween to New Year’s, it often feels as if all anyone wants to do is celebrate the season with a cocktail… or four. But since you’re not drinking, the holiday season can instead feel lonely and isolating if all you’re seeing is friends and family toasting with a big mug of eggnog . Whether you’re planning a gathering with a support group or old friends, this holiday season is a great time to host a festive sober gathering.

  • Not every happy moment has to be celebrated with a glass of bubbly.
  • As warmer days turn cold, don’t become stressed as you turn the calendar another month closer to the holiday season.
  • Staying sober and safeguarding your recovery must always come first.
  • UAB’s “Attitude of Gratitude” dinner features speakers, community, and a sense of camaraderie.
  • It is no one’s business but yours why you requested club soda.
  • In order to keep your sobriety during the holidays, you should try to find healthy ways to indulge yourself.

If you’respending this holiday season alonedue to the pandemic this is a chance to do that deeply uncomfortable practice of getting together online. We offer group calls multiple times a week throughTempest Membershipwhere you can meet and talk about the current challenges you’re facing with other members. Plus, I’ll be hosting a series of Holiday Q&As on the big drinking days throughout the year.

Start Your Recovery Today

Most people with addiction expect their upside-down world to immediately turn right side up. If you’ve been misusing alcohol or drugs for a while, your brain may need several months or even longer to set itself right. Give yourself time to build a happy new life. Unless you’re going on a specific sober trip (it’s a thing! See my last sober holidays tip!), it’s likely that you’ll be the only non-drinker in the group. This can be tough, especially in the beginning when you are yet to feel 100% confident in your sobriety. I´d like to suggest that if you think you might not be able to stay true to yourself and your choice of leading an alcohol-free life, then perhaps don´t go.

  • It’s also a good idea to provide yourself with distractions.
  • You’ll serve your family well and have more fun yourself.
  • Gradually, my old friendships that relied on drinking as a foundation have faded away, and new healthier ones have replaced them.
  • If you are in AA or NA, you begin to obsess about your drug of choice.

Alcohol addiction is a chronic disease, and individuals in recovery are constantly faced with challenges and potential triggers. At a time rife with challenges related to the COVID-19 pandemic, the holidays can add an extra layer of feeling isolated or lonely. If you’re going to a party, it’s a good idea to practice sober holiday planning.

Make sure there is someone else present who knows you have stopped drinking

As an adult, however, so many holidays revolve around the use of alcohol. You may feel less left out and less tempted if you have a fun, tasty drink in hand. If you’re going to a restaurant, this may mean looking at the menu ahead of time. If the event is at a friend’s house, you can bring your own drink. Mocktails are a fun way to spice up your beverage for the night. There aremany recipes out there, and some are even fancy holiday-themed concoctions.

  • If you were anything like me then traditionally, travelling and holidaying would go hand-in-hand with booze – and quite a lot of it too.
  • Leave knowing you were able to enjoy yourself and celebrate the holidays with friends – all while staying sober.
  • Visit Al-Anon’s holiday link for details on the Al-Anon phone bridge.
  • As a result, it can be easy to feel alienatedwhen you stop drinking.
  • Holidays are a time of joy – and everyone is happy.
  • You will stay safe, and can keep loved ones safe.

It’s easy to drive through a light display or visit a live Nativity scene. Several churches also offer support programs for people overcoming addiction. Being able to pair your religious practices with your sobriety can often help you feel more secure in the process. Keep in mind that there’s no need to be ashamed of your past or the journey you’re on now. Is a force of healing and hope for individuals, families and communities affected by addiction to alcohol and other drugs. Through charitable support and a commitment to innovation, the Foundation is able to continually enhance care, research, programs and services, and help more people. Of all triggers, the most significant can be emotional triggers.

And your Therapeutic Alliance or Addiction Treatment

It’s about choosing something better for yourself. Gradually, my old friendships that relied on drinking as a foundation have faded away, and new healthier ones have replaced them. Maybe it’s easier to go to the holiday dinner, rather than make waves by turning down the invite. In this case, put things into place to make the situation as easy as possible. One newly recovering alcoholic wrote AA slogans on index cards and kept them in her purse.

A little consideration goes a long way to making your event, and the holidays in general, more inclusive and enjoyable for everyone. If you’re not close to a person, or if you’re unaware they have a substance use disorder, this might not be an option. But don’t worry, there are other measures you can take to make your gathering more sober-friendly .