Edwin Feliciano is the Behavioral Health Director at UCSB Student Health, so he understands that maintaining sobriety can be really difficult in high-risk situations. Although there are a number of sober activities that students can do while in school, he also knows that a lot of leisurely activities in college involve partying. It can be awkward for that newly sober person to explain why they’re not drinking if asked.
You might want to work with a psychiatrist like Edwin Feliciano to come up with a strategy on how to handle these situations, but here are five things you can say to quickly diffuse the problem so you can get back to having fun. And always remember, in the majority of cases, nobody will care what is in your cup, so don’t be afraid that you’ll constantly have to explain yourself.
I’m Driving: This is an easy one. Nobody will question you if you say you don’t want to drink because you are driving. It is against the law and it is unsafe. And being a designated driver is never a bad thing; you’re doing service for others and making sure everyone gets home safe.
I’m Getting a Cleanse: Anyone who has drank too much knows the ill effects it can have on the body. Saying you’re cutting back to regain your health is something anyone can attest to.
I’m Trying to Lose Weight: This is kind of in the same vein as the previous thing you can say. Beer, wine, and spirits all contain a lot of empty calories. Getting sober has a lot of benefits, and one of the first that you will see is weight loss. You may be literally taking in thousands less in calories, and you’ll bloat less, allowing you to drop the water weight.
I Can’t Handle the Hangovers Anymore: This is probably one of the reasons why you gave up alcohol in the first place. Hangovers worsen with age, and what took a few hours to recover from might take longer now. In addition to that, there are the many consequences of drinking that you carry into the next day. Nobody will blame you if you say that can’t deal with the hangovers from excessive drinking.
I’m Taking Antibiotics: If you don’t want to provide any information about yourself, just say you’re on antibiotics or medication that forbids you from drinking. Even it isn’t true, it’s an easy way to get out of a situation fast without giving in to the urge to drink, which will have far-reaching consequences.