- Strategies and activities to banish the Wine Witch at five o'clock,
- New shopping routes to buy NA beverages rather than the liquor store or the booze aisle,
- New sleep patterns
- Strange "healthy" feelings from a newly hydrated body
- No morning scramble to delete embarrassing social media posts from the night before
- No faking knowledge about the new episode of Game of Thrones because you can't remember watching it...
But it's mostly good. In fact, as time goes on, it's the small things that start to make you feel bloody marvelous, and you start to believe that YES, this SOBER SHIT IS AWESOME!!
Until........PEOPLE....start to FUCK.IT.UP.
Yes, "people", all kinds of people in your life, that you thought you knew will start to behave in all kinds of bewildering ways, and if you're not careful, will have you second guessing all the hard work you have put into this new awesome lifestyle.
So to help you.....here is a brief guide, with ACTION NOTES....to help you navigate your way through the sea of false friends and assholes, and identify the your NEW LOVING SUPPORTIVE TRIBE......
These are people that you know slightly, that previously you used to ignore. This is because when you used to offer them wine in the afternoon (to legitimize your own drinking) they used to say things like
"Wine? Gosh, what are we celebrating?" or
"Wine? No thanks, just tea for me"
They also used to do strange things like not finishing a glass of wine. Leaving a half-finished bottle of wine on the table. Spend their weekends doing "non-drinking activities" like hiking, or outdoor sports, or anything tended that compromise your drinking time...so you didn't take part, even when invited.
In short, these people CONFUSED THE CRAP out of you.
These people, over time will become part of your new tribe. At first they will be wary of you (because they are used to being ignored), but eventually, you'll be invited to all kinds of social events that will be fun. They won't make you feel uncomfortable because you're not drinking - because they rarely drink themselves!
These are your true friends that you abandoned because of their annoying habit of Calling You On Your Bullshit.
Yes, the friends that used to say "I'm getting a bit worried about you, you texted me last night, were you drunk again?"
You ditched them, because they were FUNBUSTERS (or so you told yourself) and gradually they disappeared from your life, because you were rude, obnoxious, and self absorbed.
Start eating humble pie. Phone, text and email and APOLOGIZE for being a jerk. These people will be supportive and loving if you let them.
They will meet you for tea or coffee. They will check in and see how you are doing - they will be the CHEERLEADERS in your life, as you start to flourish and achieve things....without booze.
These people are basically annoying but harmless. They drink copious amounts, and say stuff to you like "Oh shit, are you still on the wagon?". But basically they don't care if you drink or don't drink. Because they are too drunk to give a shit.
Basically do nothing. Just observe. That used to be you. Not pretty is it?
EVIL FREAKING ASSHOLES (EFAs)
These people are stealthy. They come disguised as friends. At first they will feign concern "Oh poor you, do you really have to give up FOR GOOD?".
They will try to test you
"Oh go on, just one won't hurt"
Then they will openly try to sabotage you......"Oh, you won't last....remember when you tried to give up chocolate, that only lasted a week, just have a drink for God's sake, don't be so fucking uptight, have some fun...."
These people have some power, IF YOU LET THEM....because they are often family members or people you regarded as friends. So it's hurtful.
There are many reasons why they behave this way:
- You shine a light on their own dysfunctional drinking
- You have stopped playing the "role" that they expect you to play
- They suffer from JEALOUSY, and dragging you back down makes them feel better
- THEY ARE JUST TOXIC ASSHOLES.
DO NOT try to explain yourself. Do not try to "save" or "help" them. DO NOT play their games. Minimize CONTACT if they are family members, or better still ELIMINATE EFA's from your life COMPLETELY......
Very soon, you'll establish a new tribe. A new circle of positive people who love being sober and will help you love this life too. In fact, you've just started - welcome to Sober CyberWorld....