Holiday Parties or Gatherings During Sobriety

The holidays are directly upon us, and while this is a time of festivity and cheer for many people, it can also be a struggle for those in addiction recovery. The holidays are often a time where people are used to imbibing with substances, but for those who are practicing sobriety or looking to steer clear of triggers as part of addiction recovery, it’s important to manage these settings diligently.

At Moonlight Mountain Recovery, we’re happy to provide both inpatient and outpatient addiction recovery services, and we often assist patients in the latter setting during these times of the year. What are some of the risks that are typically heightened during the holidays for some people in substance abuse addiction recovery, and how can you manage your triggers and have a great time this holiday season without risking your recovery? Here are some important areas to keep in mind.

Common Addiction Risks or Triggers Around the Holidays

Unfortunately, there are a few ways in which the holidays can serve as a difficult time for those in addiction recovery. These include:

  • Greater presence of alcohol or substances: As we already touched on above, the most notable element of the holidays is the greater presence of alcohol or other substances. This can be difficult for those who are in early recovery, as it may be a temptation that they’re not yet ready to face.
  • Social pressures: The holidays often bring with them social pressures to drink or party, regardless of what your current level of sobriety may be. This can be especially difficult for those in early recovery.
  • Unfamiliar environments: Going to new places and experiencing unfamiliar surroundings can bring about anxiety for those in addiction recovery. This can be a major source of struggle during the holidays, as many people find themselves visiting multiple homes or events with different settings than what they’re used to.
  • Prior abuse environments: On the flip side, many patients in addiction recovery may find themselves returning to homes and environments that were once linked with substance abuse or other forms of abuse. This can be incredibly triggering, and it’s important to be mindful of this potential issue when planning your holiday schedule.
  • Reminders of family or significant others: Finally, for those in addiction recovery, reminders of family members or significant others who have passed away can be a major source of triggers. It’s important to keep these emotions in mind and surround yourself with supportive individuals if you’re feeling uneasy this holiday season.

Hosting a Sober Party

In many cases, one of the best possible approaches to managing your triggers and having a great time during the holidays is to host your own sober gathering. This allows you to stay in charge of your own environment, and can often be a source of joy for those looking to celebrate without compromising their sobriety.

Some tips for hosting a successful sober party are:

  • Have plenty of non-alcoholic drinks on hand: This can be a great way to provide another focus point and make sure that the environment is one that’s not centered around alcohol or other substances.
  • Make sure there are plenty of activities: Providing activities such as board games, arts & crafts, music, or movies can help keep everyone engaged and avoid any potential awkwardness that may come with being in a room without alcohol.
  • Invite supportive people: As we mentioned previously, having close friends and family members who are understanding of your sobriety journey can be a major resource during the holidays. Make sure you invite those people to your gathering so you can have a positive environment.

Attending a Non-Sober Party

Now, it’s completely acceptable for someone in addiction recovery to attend gatherings where alcohol or other substances are present. However, it’s important to stay mindful of your triggers and keep the following tips in mind:

  • Keep your distance from alcohol or drugs: If you know that you’re not comfortable being around these substances, make sure to stay away. It may also be a good idea to bring along some non-alcoholic drinks or snacks to help avoid any potential temptation.
  • Be vocal about your recovery: If it’s comfortable for you, let the people in attendance know that you’re recovering from addiction and respectful of everyone else’s choices. This can be a great way to set boundaries and ensure that your rights are respected.
  • Bring a support system: If possible, try to bring a friend or family member along who will understand your journey and support you in any situation. Having someone there can make it much easier to stay on track and focus on having a good time without compromising your sobriety.
  • Have an “escape” plan: For whatever reason, you may not feel comfortable staying in a certain environment. It’s important to have a plan in order and know how you’ll remove yourself if necessary.

Importance of Saying No

No matter which settings you find yourself in this holiday season, it’s important to remember that you don’t need to compromise your sobriety journey or your health for the sake of fitting in. If someone offers you a drink or other substances, remember that it’s completely acceptable to say no and stand by your beliefs!

The holidays can be a challenging time for those in addiction recovery, but it’s important to remember that there are plenty of ways to stay on track and enjoy yourself! Be mindful of potential triggers, have a support system, and don’t be afraid to say no if necessary. With the right resources and attitude, you’ll be able to make the most out of this holiday season while taking care of your sobriety.

And for assistance with any addiction recovery process or need, contact our team at Moonlight Mountain Recovery today.

Related Articles:

Symptoms of an Overdose on Drugs

Understanding the Symptoms of an Overdose on Drugs

There are a few major negative events that can take place with someone who is addicted to various drugs and substances, and one of [...]

Read More
Alcohol Rehab

How to Qualify for Inpatient Drug or Alcohol Rehab

There are a few different settings and formats in which addiction recovery programs operate, and one of the most intensive and often effective is [...]

Read More
Babies Be Born Addicted to Drugs

Can Babies Be Born Addicted to Drugs? A Breakdown

There are several questions that often come up with regard to drug addiction and genetics, some involving the possibility of addiction passing down through [...]

Read More
Brain Damage Risks From Drug Overdose

Brain Damage Risks From Drug Overdose

There are several notable risks present during any kind of opioid or other drug overdose, and one of the most significant here is the [...]

Read More
Common Signs of Meth Addiction to Know

Common Signs of Meth Addiction to Know

Different forms of substance abuse give off somewhat differing signs in the person who is abusing them, and methamphetamine is a good example. While [...]

Read More
Drug Addiction Really a Disease

Is Drug Addiction Really a Disease?

There are a few common phrases you may have heard with regard to the world of addiction and recovery, and some of these involve [...]

Read More
Cocaine Addiction

Knowing the Signs of Cocaine Addiction

For those who struggle with it, cocaine addiction is a serious issue that can impact people across numerous walks of life. The help of [...]

Read More

How Long Does it Take to Become Addicted to Alcohol?

There are many questions that often arise about alcohol addiction, and some of these surround the time it takes to truly set in. When [...]

Read More

What is Inpatient Addiction Rehab?

There are several vital resources available to those looking to overcome addiction, and various addiction treatment and rehab programs are some of the most [...]

Read More

What to Do For Alcohol Poisoning Emergencies

There are a few forms of emergency that can arise due to overconsumption of various drugs or substances, and sadly one of the most [...]

Read More