Social events and telling new people

I think I may have spoken too soon yesterday…

Last week I was invited to a Christmas meal with some friends from sixth form and their partners. It’s tomorrow night, and my husband can’t make it because he’s at drill (firefighter training), so I was going to go alone. Last year, one of the other girls was on her own, so I kind of assumed she would be this time, too. But I realised that’s not the case, and I will be the only odd one….

So. I only see these friends once a year, if that, and I don’t really know their partners – never met one of them – plus I’ll be on my own, and I’ll need to explain my not drinking! The restaurant is in walking distance from my house, and so I will need to give a reason.

I’ve sort of been thinking of not going, to be honest. Not really sure. I mean, I really like these friends, its just that I don’t know the partners that well, plus I won’t have Mr W with me for moral support. I feel like a bit of a fraud for saying what I said yesterday about social gatherings.

Being upfront about sobriety is easier or more difficult depending on the situation, then. And also on whether or not I want to reveal my reasons for it. I do prefer to be honest about it, and have trouble telling half a story sometimes, or trying to avoid giving a reason. But I see now that there are always going to be new people to tell that I don’t drink, so it might be worth my while practising some different responses to the ‘why not?’ question.

For tomorrow night, the question is to go or not to go? How vulnerable do I want to be? How brave? Or am I just not in the right frame of mind to ‘defend’ my choice – as that’s what it sometimes feels like people ask me to do…

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3 thoughts on “Social events and telling new people”

  1. I don’t know what I would do. But first: you do not have to explain not drinking. It is your choice. Practising how to wave off questions might be elegant but saying ‘No thank you, I don’t drink alcohol (anymore).’ as if it is the most normal thing to do is very strong. Don’t apologise; no need. Don’t carry shame; no need. ‘Just’ inform and leave it at that. Speak from where you are happy that you quit. That is very strong. 🙂

    I have cancelled events lately because I did not feel like going or because I felt that being confronted with not drinking by any of the visitors would make me feel bad and challenge my sobriety. Yeah, that’s it actually: I have done what I could and I have put my sobriety first. (Un?)fortunately I have a strong feeling in my that says that in my life I only get one shot at this. So I live by that and again, put sobriety first.
    I have not read your post from yesterday but I found that it is way easier to speak with people when I am sober. Also: have you noticed how most couples don’t speak with eachother during evenings out? If you go it might be wise to make sure you get a good seat either in the middle if you don’t want to feel lonely or the x-th wheel on the wagon or to the side if you don’t want to mingle. Being worried up front is of little use, and who knows: there might even be people there that do not drink either and support your choice.

    Enjoy your evening in, or out. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. The nice thing about it being close to home is you can make an easy escape if needed.
    I woukd just order tea/soda etc and not mention it.
    If asked i usually go with i quit drinking and ferl great without wine.
    People just seem to move on from there. Sometimes it opens a door to talking about yoga, which i love.
    If you decide you woukd rather not go, stay home! Do ehat makes YOU happy.

    Liked by 1 person

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