Addiction Psychiatrist Offers Coping Tips Against Drinking During Holidays

December 21, 2021 14:05:16

The holidays, family gatherings and holiday celebrations are often filled with fun, good food and alcohol on occasion. Individuals with alcohol addiction may be vulnerable during this time, especially if they’re being invited to places with booze. Ideally, not having alcohol around would be best, but that isn’t always possible. Addiction psychiatrist Dr. Lauren Grawert gives a few tips on how to handle situations like this.

Grawert states that it’s good to have a preplanned response ready when you, as a recovering alcohol addict, are offered an alcoholic drink. She highlights that it should be something you’re comfortable saying. Here are a couple of examples that can be tweaked and used:

  • Let me start with a glass of orange juice. This statement buys you time and also allows you to drink your favorite nonalcoholic drink.
  • I’d like to pass for now, I’m not feeling up to it. This may keep people from offering you any more drinks.
  • While I like beer, I would really love a cup of tea. It doesn’t have to be tea, but this statement allows you to state an alternative to alcohol while making it look like you aren’t declining alcohol.
  • I’m on medications, and I can’t drink alcohol. Keep in mind that this may shift the narrative to why you need medication and that situation, so if you aren’t actually on medication, you may need a good cover-up story. Alternatively, you can go with another option.

In addition, you can also have an accountability partner who knows about your situation. This person will not be drinking, just like you, and will help you get out of any offers to drink alcohol. It should be noted, however, that this is potentially risky, especially if your partner isn’t reliable.

Additionally, it is important to keep in mind that making a change may be overwhelming, especially when trying to recover from addiction. Grawert advises that those trying to change should take it one day at a time, and if you find that overwhelming, try taking it one hour at a time.

She adds that you shouldn’t give up if you relapse, explaining that you can still continue with your journey and succeed in recovering from addiction. The addiction psychiatrist recommends that those seeking resources on addiction recovery visit the website for the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.

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