Summertime Events and Sobriety
Summer is a time for celebration and fun; however, it can also be a time of temptation for people in addiction recovery. Alcohol seems to be present at every party, and with the legalization of marijuana in several states, many people will be smoking weed. So, how can you stay sober this summer?
Choose Who and Where You Spend Your Time
If you have the option, you can choose to hang out with family and friends who are also sober. Many support groups, such as Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) and Narcotics Anonymous (NA), hold events for major holidays where sober people can get together and celebrate. If alcohol and marijuana aren’t present, you won’t be as tempted to drink or use.
However, sober events are not always an option. If you’re celebrating with friends and family who aren’t sober, it’s essential to communicate your needs and be an advocate for yourself. Ask if the event can be substance-free or if a loved one can help hold you accountable. Supportive friends and family will have no problem helping you meet your needs.
As you are considering which summer parties to attend, look for ones with numerous activities, not just those centered around eating and drinking. If there are other things to do at a party, such as volleyball, swimming or s’mores, you’ll have plenty of things to do to keep you engaged.
Host a Summer Event
Another option to avoid temptation is to host your own event. When you choose to host your party, you can make it alcohol and marijuana-free. You can also remind guests not to bring substances with them. If attendees do not wish to enjoy a sober gathering, they can politely decline your invitation. Hosting your own event will also keep you busy, which will help keep your mind off drugs and alcohol.
Have a Plan
If you think you’ll be somewhere where alcohol and marijuana are present, create a plan in advance. What will you do if you are offered a drink, feel tempted to drink or even use? Maybe you’ll plan to stay away from areas where drinks are served and choose to enjoy delicious food instead. You might even recruit someone you can talk to or bring a sober friend along. No matter what you choose as your plan, know what it is before heading to any events. Then, if temptation arises, you’ll be prepared.
Part of creating a plan is also having an exit strategy. It is essential to know that you can excuse yourself from any event if you feel the temptation to drink or use is too much. Consider letting another sober friend or family member know your plan and that you may need to leave early. If you feel the need to leave, you can call this person, and they will pick you up. Arrange to have a buddy you can talk to about your cravings or establish set times for this person to call you periodically to check on you and help hold you accountable. If at any time you feel your sobriety is at risk, it is time to leave.
Bring a Friend or Family Member
If you will be at an event where you know alcohol or marijuana will be offered, ask a friend or family member to accompany you. This person should be another sober friend or someone who can commit to staying sober with you for the night. In addition, they can provide you with moral support if the temptation to drink or use arises. Sometimes, having someone at your side to tell another person, “No, we’re just going to stick with water,” can help keep you accountable and lessen any uncomfortable feelings you may have about declining a drink. Inviting a friend or family member will also assure you aren’t the only person at a party who isn’t drinking or using.
Have Confidence in Yourself
Remind yourself how far you have come on your sobriety journey this summer. Have confidence that you can navigate this season, have fun and stay sober, too. With the right plan, you will enjoy a safe and sober celebration.
There are many ways to enjoy summertime events and maintain your sobriety. You may want to consider choosing who and where you spend time, hosting your own event, having a plan or bringing another person. If you are struggling to maintain your sobriety, Cliffside Malibu is here to help. Our caring, compassionate staff will take care of your every need so that our doctors and therapists can help you safely and comfortably overcome your addiction. Cliffside Malibu provides clinical excellence at every level to ensure the greatest chance of success for your recovery. For more information on our services, call us today at (855) 403-5641.