Published On: March 4, 20211001 words5 min read

You have finally ditched the drink and now you feel like partying – sober. This may seem easy. Partying when sober. Just go to the party and drink your alcohol-free (AF) drinks and start dancing, right? Wrong!
It takes time and guts to do go partying when sober – if you are used to partying full of alcohol, believe you me.  What the heck do you do when everyone keeps offering you a drink?

Be Ready to Answer Those Awkward Questions

Be ready. Practice at home first, in front of the mirror if need be! Just be confident in your skin and be ready.  For the concerned questions, the raised eyebrows, the awkward glances, the sidelong looks. The” Are you OK, I mean, you don’t have a drink?” looks.
Some party animals will simply ignore you as you down another soda and hide behind the potted palm tree.
I must admit that I avoided going partying when I got sober. I still do. But even at family braais I had to duck and dive to avoid That Question: “Is something wrong with you? Why are you not drinking?”
The last time I saw my dad before he died, I had been sober for a year. I never did tell him or my mom about my journey to sobriety. They were drinkers. Alcoholics. So, I knew it would have been hard work explaining why I had quit. My poor dad kept asking me if I wanted a beer. When I avoided the subject, he would make confused remarks as he tried to work out my “dilemma.”

Are You Still Not Drinking?

Do your friends always ask, “Are you still not drinking?” One of the Tribe Sober members says that a few of her friends do.  “I’ve got to the stage in my life at 48 going on 49 that I don’t need to impress or explain but I am honest with others as I am with myself. My reasons are that I have PTSD and anxiety and that I am on meds for that. I tell people I did a Sober Spring and felt so good – much calmer and I have peace within …sleeping better, anxiety lower…just so many benefits. I wish I could “bottle” sobriety and sell it!!”

It’s hard to have fun sober! Especially when you only recently tried Sober Spring or Dry January and you still feel a little raw and exposed. It’s hard to dodge the questions too. But when you are a seasoned non-drinker, it becomes easier and you can turn it into a game.
How do you throw a funny retort at the host of a work party who asks,” Red or white?” or the jock behind the bar at the wedding who asks,” You going to bed early tonight honey?” Or your new boss who hands you a gin and tonic and says, “Cheers?” Do you pretend to sip it then hide it in the potted palm?
Doran Lamb puts it so well: “… we all know that are some really lovely f**king people who just will not relax until everyone has a glass of wine in their hands. You don’t have to justify your sobriety but it’s good to have something prepared to get them off your back.”
Have these one-liners at the ready and fire them off like a canon into an advancing army! You should be OK and people should then leave you alone! Enjoy.

20 One Liners you can Use at a Party When Asked Why You Don’t Want a Drink:

  1. I had a bad dream last night that my last drink killed me.
  2. I wish I could but I have a mental condition.
  3. What? Drink that stuff? You gotta be kidding me!
  4. I think I am coming down with something and I am worried it could be Covid.
  5. I feel a bit sick now and may throw up.
  6. I wish I could but I am an early bird you know: up at sparrows for Tai Chi every morn!
  7. O no, I can’t drink because I am a health consultant.
  8. I battle to sleep at night and the drink makes it worse.
  9. I get this terrible rash when I drink, like chicken pox, all over me!
  10. Oh, I’m not staying long thanks, I am off to see a friend who is getting divorced.
  11. I like my breasts and would prefer not to give them cancer.
  12. Why would I want to drink a highly addictive, carcinogenic, depressive, anxiety inducing, neurotoxic poison?
  13. I find having a fully functioning immune system pays dividends in global pandemics.

Tribe Sober Direct One-Liners:

  1. I don’t feel like it.
  2. I don’t drink thank you.
  3. I don’t want a drink, I want 9!
  4. Life is so damn good without it.
  5. I’ll have a lime and soda please. I don’t like the effect alcohol has on me.
  6. I gave up during lockdown. I don’t need it to have fun / to cope anymore.
  7. My life’s so good that I don’t need to numb it.
  8. Because I am learning to love myself.
  9. I feel so much better not drinking thanks.
  10. Why do you drink?

Partying when sober can be tiring. But not when you turn it into a game. See how many different reactions you can get when drinkers ask you that pointed question: “Why are you not drinking?” Or “What would you like to drink?”
Choose any one liner. They all work. Who knows, you may start a good conversation with someone who also wants to quit. You may become the magnet at the party for people who have booze issues yet don’t yet know how to tackle them. If single, you may meet the sober man of your dreams. Stand out, stand strong and above all, have a sober party!

For more tools to add to your toolbox, check out the many challenges you can do with Tribe Sober, the recovery coaching and the inspirational reading.

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  1. Grant Nupen March 6, 2021 at 11:55 am

    Love the new website and brand change. Well done. G.

  2. Jo Dee March 6, 2021 at 8:14 pm

    Love the new look Tribe Sober and of course, am very grateful to the smaller World Without Wine group that got me going on the sober journey. All the best team. I have a feeling with the name change this will snowball into a very big sober tribe!

    • Janet G March 15, 2021 at 11:43 am

      thanks Jo! – its been a lot of work but the new membership features have gone down well so its worth it – we are just working on installing a better chat forum now so watch this space!

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