Hacks for a sober life
May 13, 2014 12:30 PM Subscribe
After doing something at the weekend that I'm totally ashamed of I think I need to not drink again. I'm not sure how to manage that. I'd like advice from people who have been in the same situation. Apologies for length.
posted by anonymous to Health & Fitness (50 answers total) 9 users marked this as a favorite
I started drinking quite young (early teens) as most people do where I grew up. As a shy person it helped me relax and especially talk to possible romantic partners and I liked being drunk. As a young adult though (early 20s) I was drinking a lot - half a bottle of vodka a day at one time. My liver wasnt good and I did a lot of things I wasn't proud of especially when it came to sex. Over the years I have had some drunken indiscretions when I was in a LTR - nothing went too far but that was usually down to luck like being interrupted - and I decided to make changes. I'm very flirty when drunk and was afraid of ending up properly cheating on my partner. I don't drink often now and when I do I never mix drinks and when I get to a certain point I switch to water. I'm now in a different relationship with someone I love hugely and I thought I was "safe" because I never even feel flirty with anyone now because I'm so into them.
Except this weekend I went on an away trip with some friends. I stupidly hadn't eaten all day because I was really busy and by the time I got there I started drinking to catch up with the others. I had wine, then there were shots, cocktails with dinner... Basically I drank in a way I don't anymore and I was totally drunk quite early on. And I spent the evening talking to some man in a bar then went back to his and had some sexual contact - just kissing and touching but obviously it's irrelevant how much happened, the fact is that anything happened. I was totally not into it and don't know why I went back with him, the only way I can describe it was like an out of body experience, like I was watching someone else do these things. I'm also lucky there was a point where I just walked out because I clearly put myself in a dangerous situation.
I'm completely ashamed about this and horrified at myself. My partner knows everything and we've had a rough few days but we are working things out and will hopefully be able to get past it, based on the fact that I was so out of it. However they have asked that I not drink again (at least for now and not when I'm out with friends to help rebuild trust) and I also want this, as I'm terrified of ever ending up like that again.
My problem is that my social life and culture is very oriented around alcohol. If someone isn't drinking for obvious reasons like pregancy or something it doesn't go unremarked-upon. I have a dinner to attend this week with people I hang out with a lot, and there will be a lot of wine and they will be dumbstruck and possibly disappointed that I'm not joining in. So I'm asking:
-how do you explain you're not drinking without saying "I can't trust myself"? I was thinking it might be easier at first to blame medication?
-how do I handle myself round people who are drinking or drunk like at parties. I can't help thinking how boring everyone is going to seem when I'm not laughing drunkenly at their jokes, and ill seem boring to them
-what exactly do people do when they don't drink? Meeting my friends usually involves a bottle of wine in the house / meeting at a bar / cocktails after work / beers at BBQs etc. I don't know how else to socialise it seems
-how do I stick to my goal when people invariably invite me to have "just the one" - I don't know anyone at all who doesn't drink and Im not sure how I'll manage being the odd one out.
TL;DR I messed up on a drunken night. I will do anything to keep this relationship and I can't believe I nearly destroyed it. They were devastated and I am happy to embrace sobriety for my sake as well as for them and us. But how do I go about it living somewhere where alcohol is the foundation for most activities?