Family and company parties are abundant this time of year. For those in recovery, it can be a difficult and tempting time. The following are tips on how to prevent relapse and survive a holiday party.
Tips To Survive A Holiday Party
First of all, give yourself permission to not go to the party. It’s okay to say no. If you do choose to go,
Make sure you are not H.A.L.T. (hungry, angry, lonely, tired). I make sure to always eat something before I go to a party or a potential high-risk situation.
Give yourself a curfew. You do not need to be at the party until 2am. Stay for a couple of hours and say hello to everyone then give yourself permission to leave. It helps to bring a buddy that doesn’t drink along with focusing on the conversation when meeting someone new.
Be of service. Help with setting up the party, serving the food or offering to clean up. This takes your focus off the alcohol and keeps your hands busy.
Bring your own non-alcoholic mixers. Make sure you have something special to drink besides water. Use a cup that looks like everyone else’s. This may help you feel like you’re part of the crowd and will avoid someone asking you if they can get you a drink. Remember to always get the drink yourself.
Make others aware. Let a couple of people in your sober support group know that you’re going into a high-risk situation and that you may need to talk to them that night if you get the urge to drink. They can help keep you accountable.
Drive yourself so that you can leave the party at any time you need to. Remember, you didn’t get sober to become everyone’s designated driver. If someone has made the decision to drink, they can also make the decision to spend a few extra dollars to take a taxi home.
Sarah F. Scott, CADC-CAS |Summit Estate Outpatient Counselor