In my personal life, this distaste for drinking is fine. My husband doesn’t really like drinking either so we spend most of our time, conveniently enough, not drinking. We watch TV and don’t drink. We go to dinner and don’t drink. We live most of our lives just not drinking. It’s fantastic.
But when it comes to my social life, I can’t think of a single event I’ve been invited to in the last year that didn’t center on or at least involve alcohol.
What’s worse is that I can’t think of a single one of those times when I felt strongly convicted enough to say, “Hey, no thanks. I’m good.”
All too often I’m like:
“Ah yes, a glass of terrible free wine I don’t even want to drink? Thank you. Count me in.”
“Obnoxiously expensive cocktail that costs exactly as much as 7 whole frozen burritos that I love? Sounds reasonable. A ROUND ON ME.”
“Bad house vodka that makes me get loud and eat a basket of french fries? Sign. Me. Up.”
Don’t get me wrong. Alcohol can be absolutely delightful. In fact, I love it at a high quality and in low quantities these days — like one perfect glass of red wine with dinner at Kindred or the world’s best cocktail at Summit Room.
What I hate about alcohol though is my blind willingness to drink it when I don’t want to just because that’s what it seems everyone else is doing or (worse) because that’s what it seems I need to survive this social situation.
Sometimes I’ll be at an event, begrudgingly sipping on some drink I don’t even like or want while plotting out where I’ll get my basket of french fries when I’ll witness someone do exactly what I want to every single time in this situation: refuse the drink.
And just like that, it’s so simple and so clear that the supposed social pressure is all in my head, that I am very much capable of carrying on a fully sober conversation and that it is very ok if I don’t feel like drinking tonight.