View Full Version : coping with being af in social settings

March 11th, 2007, 11:29 PM
Well, don't mind if I muscle right in to my new home on the AB's section.
I have a question I'm sure tons of you bright souls have answers to.
when I go out to a nice dinner for example I can almost see a helicopter fly straight over to the top of my and then shine a 20million candle power spotlight directly down on me. Just me, for the whole drinking world to to notice in horror like I'm a circus freak. Ok, I know I'm being dramatic but you get my dilema.....what do I do? Tell them I'm on meds? I think that one will get old after a while. ??? much thanks in advance.

March 11th, 2007, 11:38 PM
Hi D, and my love to Mrs. D, I was the one who thought that everyone was looking due to past performances, but you know, it didn't happen. You can have a glass of anything in your hand at these occasions. and as soon as you ask for soda water or coke from the hostess, that sends your tone and no-one who is respectful will ask anything further. I mention respect in that sentence because it is only the disrespectful who will question.

My fear of declaring "I can't drink alcohol" was mostly in my mind, rather than others.

I also understand the overwhelming questions that occur after detox. Break it all down one situation at a time. I am so happy that you have found this site to share with us, along with your lovely wife.

I love to cook too, and look forward to some killer recipes.



March 12th, 2007, 03:36 AM
Hello D, Its wonderful to see you back and I wish you all you wish for yourself..

As to the social thing...Well I don't go out very much, but, occasionally at work, colleagues will say, " Come over to mine on Saturday night, I'm having a bit of a party" I now reply, " Thanks, but I don't drink anymore, I've given it up " When they ask why, I just tell them it was getting out of hand and I have decided to knock it on the head... You know, the number of people who will then say " God, wish I could that " or " Yea, I'm drinking far to much these days ". So, there are people out there who will envy you your achievement...

Determinator, after what you have been through, not drinking is something to be PROUD OF, wear it like an Olympic Gold Medal, and, when you are offered a drink, just look that person right in the eye and say " NO THANKS, I DON'T DRINK ".... Let that pride you feel in yourself show in your tone of voice...
The first time or two may not be easy, but you know what they say about practice... Actually you could start right now, stand in front of a mirror and say to yourself a couple of times, NO THANKS, I DON'T DRINK, and look yourself right in the eyes as you say it.. You can do it, you know you can....

Take care, Louise xxx

March 12th, 2007, 06:10 AM
Hello D, i went out for a pub lunch with 2 friends yesterday. They were drinking and i was on lime and soda. They asked me why i wasnt drinking and i said, "I've been drinking too much lately and i want to give my body a rest." He replied that he wished he could do that!" I actually felt quite proud of myself for being in control. It was very wierd not drinking and i had a good sniff of my friends wine(!) but i found myself more interested in their conversation because i felt good and alert. Their conversation wasn't that great actually because they both had hangovers! I really had a good nosh up and was able to take my son out to the park afterwards. 27 days ago I would have gone home and cracked open another bottle of wine and passed out eventually. I know what you mean about the spot-light on you but the more you do it, it will fade! As irishlady said, You wear that gold medal because you should be VERY PROUD of yourself!! Good luck. B

March 12th, 2007, 07:41 AM
H guys, yeas I so agree with the above. I've been AF for 2 weeks and you know what I've found... most people are actually JEALOUS!!!! I've been using the excuse of Lent, but saying pretty much the same as Bella, that I wanted to give my body a rest and that Lent seemed like a good time to do it.

Now I am saying to people that I feel so good (alert, happy positive, energised) that I might carry on, or at the very minimum seriously moderate (actually am VERy nervous about moderating , but will cross that bridge later...)

I have found that people are really interested - when they see that you still enjoy the night out / party / pub lunch without the booze, it makes them think...

also, to quote from another post I read, once your boozy mates have had thier 2nd drnk, they don't give a rats arse what you're drinking anyway.

Best of luck D, Kate x

March 12th, 2007, 08:14 AM
Very good job everyone!!!
I too have used what you have suggested including "alcohol just is not good to me" or "I'm concentrating on my health right now"

Bella... good job on 27, and the victory of spending time with your son at the park instead of drinking at home....Wow, that is an inspiration...

Keep up the good work everyone...

March 12th, 2007, 09:42 AM
http://smileys.smileycentral.com/cat/4/4_1_201.gif (http://www.smileycentral.com/?partner=ZSzeb001_ZSYYYYYYJGUS)YES!!!!!!!!

Hi De and Mrs.

I agree with all that has been said here.
The words "Respect" and "Pride" really stand out. Concentrate on them. Ignor the "friends"(?) who are jealous .
Work together as a team and press toward the goal of a wonderful life together. This will mean discussing ahead of time how to handle everything. "Three cords make a strong rope". God + De + Mrs. De.
:l Nancy

http://www.smileycentral.com/sig.jsp?pc=ZSzeb095&pp=ZSYYYYYYJGUS (http://smiley.smileycentral.com/download/index.jhtml?partner=ZSzeb095_ZSYYYYYYJGUS&utm_id=7923)

March 12th, 2007, 10:36 AM
I've heard others say they have developed an ulcer so they can't drink.

D~you'd be sooo suprised as how many people could care less if you are drinking or not. It's all in your mind. It's because our world has revolved around alcohol so much we assume everybody elses has too.

March 12th, 2007, 10:46 AM
Hi Determinator. Good to hear from you, you sound good. You know this is so simple but I just don't tell people anything. I f they ask if I want a drink I just say no thanks, I''m all set.
Not to be cold but you don't owe anyone an explanation, it's none of there business.And as others have said you really do find that people don't notice or care ,or they really do envy you. Good Luck! Aquamarine

March 12th, 2007, 11:08 AM
Yup Mr D....I'm with the Sea Breez....because OUR worlds revolve around the old vino tinto, we often can't see that others just may not....perhaps......give it QUITE the same importance.

And echoing a lot of the previous also, I reckon it's true...when you say you are cutting down/ stopping drinking...many people DO automatically say that they wish they could too, or 'good on you' or words to that effect....

I tell people now that I don't drink....if they probe further and ask why, i tell them I want to be healthy...I eat better, and no one comments if I push wholemeal bread into my pie hole instead of crappy white, why would they?......people who are fixated with the idea of you not drinking are either those that a) get fed up with it VERY quickly after a couple of jokey comments....or b) have a problem themselves, and so THEY are fixated on the idea of someone not drinking as they can't understand how it could be possible...

I don't mind either of the a or b option folk....I'm just glad to be option c
As Oirish so rightly says...wear it like a medal my friend!!!!

Love to you and your dear wife, and a very healthy social life my boy!!! xxx

March 12th, 2007, 05:10 PM
Gracias Amigos and Amigas, such good wise help for my new life. I shall pin on the medal now.

March 12th, 2007, 06:08 PM
Hi D,
All the advise, as usual, is all great and I couldnt agree more.
Tell others what ever makes you feel most comfortable at the time your asked.
It's up to you what and when you tell anyone.
It's strange how we all feel pressured to have a drink, or explain why, in social situations.
Kate is so right, in the beginning it's hard to say you dont drink for fear of looking like a
wowser or falling off the wagon and looking weak but as has been said by everyone, I have found nothing but support from those I have told (and I'm proud to say it also) including my dear friend who is as big an alcoholic as I was.He is proud of me and very supportive of me. He respects my choice to be sober as I do his to drink....it's all up to each of us to choose a path thats right for us.
Good luck D.
We're all here for you :h
Victoria xxooxx

March 12th, 2007, 11:42 PM
I just knew I could tap into "the force" here and get the right stuff I needed! tonight DX recommended we go for a celebration dinner at a fancy restaurant and while I was aprehensive (this place advertises the finest wine-bar in town) we did go. I could smell the wine in the air. I could feel my pulse raising a bit and a little sweating, but it was just the two of us at the table and after I confidently ordered my celtzer water I started to calm down. I tried a glass of no-alcohol wine and it was..uh....er....wierd to say the least but didn't want to make me drink either. I was being very mindful of all my feelings and reactions to things. I actually started to get very happy and even silly joking and having a wonderful AF "fancy dinner" with my lovely wife. what a great night! Next challenge will be at the same table with drinkers...but I'm in no rush to challenge myself. thanks again all, you have great tools to offer.

March 13th, 2007, 12:08 AM
I've said it before somewhere ... by the time your friends are on their second drink, they actually don't give a tinker's cuss OR a rat's arse about whether you're drinking or not.

It's all in OUR heads.

March 13th, 2007, 06:30 AM
Well done D. Its not easy but the more you do it the easier it will become. B

March 13th, 2007, 06:46 AM
Hey D and DX, raising a large glass of sparkling water to you both and your celebration dinner! I am speechless with admiration for you.

I find that it's the first drink of the evening that is the "hurdle", if you want to think of it as that. After that, no-one even notices.

PS: D, what n/a wine did you drinkK Recommend it? I tried something here in the UK called "Eisberg" which I might possibly buy again in the future if my kettle needs de-scaling.

March 14th, 2007, 06:02 PM
again thanks much y'all, yes I'm proud of my "baby step".
this brand was called FREI and it was the white Zin version (the only one they had) so
it was expectedly sweet. ironically I liked it better than the regular alcohol-containing white zins I've tried in the past...how very weird. maybe it's the campral? no idea but I'm not complaining. it was like an interesting fruit juice more than anything. speaking of which I've dusted off the juicer and made some neat concoctions....yummy and healthy.

March 15th, 2007, 09:06 AM
That just reminded me Determinator.. Haven't juiced anything for ages.. Celery, carrots and apples was one of my favourites....Hmmmm may do some later....

Hey, why don't you put a few juices on the recipe page???

March 17th, 2007, 08:18 PM

i saw a guy go to a function and he was the only one not drinking. i was jealous for sure!
he looked great, thinner and healthy looking.

I think problems with alcohol are actually pretty common. culturally speaking, it is easier in some countries than others to abstain.

March 17th, 2007, 10:41 PM
true, the US culture seems to give alcohol this weirdly elevated status...oh well.

Victoria, what a sweetheart, thank you.
and regarding juicing....problem is I'm completely schizo with the juicer...I just start cramming fruit and veggies in the thing until something acceptable ends up in the glass. But you have me thinkin' Irish. thanks all again....all most appreciated.

March 20th, 2007, 11:37 AM
Hey D

Good to see you back and doing so well.

Be thankful you don't live in Scotland - the drinking culture here is .....relentless is probably the right word.

I too found it a bit weird the first time - but like others have said, the usual comment I get now is "Cool" or "Well done" when I say I have stopped drinking.

One of my friends has actually said he is going to join me AF next time we are out together!

Take care