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Author Topic: Sober for October - Those who are determined to make one cave in  (Read 15946 times)

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HannahGrace

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Re: Sober for October - Those who are determined to make one cave in
« Reply #15 on: October 03, 2014, 09:47:13 AM »
I haven't heard of this "Sober for October" - is there a fundraising component?  Is this the new "ice bucket challenge"? 

mime

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Re: Sober for October - Those who are determined to make one cave in
« Reply #16 on: October 03, 2014, 10:09:50 AM »
When I was trying to get my weight under control, I learned of the people labelled "diet saboteurs"-- those friends who appear to be hell-bent on dragging you back to where you were. (of course, their real motivations are not to bring you frustration, but it will feel that way). This friend of yours sounds like the same thing.

I think you're handling it well! I don't drink at all, and I've seen others get uncomfortable when they drink and I don't. It does strike me a bit odd; I've worried that they think I'm judging them. I find that it helps if I don't make a big deal out of it, like a smile and change of subject will send the message that the situation is OK. When offered a drink, I just ask for an iced tea and move on, without any explanation or backstory. It seems to put people at ease if I don't act like this is such an issue that anyone needs a whole dialog to justify their choices and accept others' choices.

I can see that you may want to make a big deal about this, though, to raise awareness for your charity. It may be a case of "know your audience", which you seem to understand already  :).

Your first weekend in Sober October is about to start. Best of luck (and a stong spine) to you as you earn that badge!


Elisabunny

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Re: Sober for October - Those who are determined to make one cave in
« Reply #17 on: October 03, 2014, 10:41:36 AM »

As an aside, I have a friend who does Sober October nearly every year and we only start to question him when it becomes Sober November. The man doesnít seem to understand that he doesnít have just two options: sober or black-out drunk. He can have a beer.  I think he needed to break his college drinking habits.

Actually, maybe he can't.  In another thread, another poster said that they find abstinence easier than moderation (in that case, it was in the context of dieting).  Perhaps your friend is coming to the same conclusion.
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ccnumber4

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Re: Sober for October - Those who are determined to make one cave in
« Reply #18 on: October 03, 2014, 12:36:47 PM »
Just go and order a soda or whatever and don't even mention that you are not drinking. It sounds like you are purposefully baiting this person and I question why you would do that.

I agree.  Also, I think you are using "Why would I want to do that" wrong here.  If these are people that you normally drink with, of course they will be puzzled and wonder why you aren't drinking now, when you've never had an issue before.  If you really feel you have to say something (and I don't think you do) just say "Sorry, I'm not drinking in October."

If I routinely went out to dinner with friends and we typically get dessert, and someone answered "Why would I want to do that?" when I asked if they wanted a dessert, I would think they were rude.  That's a phrase you use with aquaintances, I think, not with friends who are just puzzled why you are suddently not drinking/eating dessert/whatever. 

Basically, i think you are making an issue where there isn't one.  Just say no and move on. 

artk2002

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Re: Sober for October - Those who are determined to make one cave in
« Reply #19 on: October 03, 2014, 12:57:29 PM »

As an aside, I have a friend who does Sober October nearly every year and we only start to question him when it becomes Sober November. The man doesnít seem to understand that he doesnít have just two options: sober or black-out drunk. He can have a beer.  I think he needed to break his college drinking habits.

Actually, maybe he can't.  In another thread, another poster said that they find abstinence easier than moderation (in that case, it was in the context of dieting).  Perhaps your friend is coming to the same conclusion.

That's really at the core of a lot of alcohol treatment programs. There are, sadly, many people in this world who can't "just have one." It's a terrible disservice to them to try to convince them otherwise. If someone chooses not to drink and have a Sober October or October, November, December, et. al., it's our job to be supportive of that, not undermine them. That includes "questioning."
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z_squared82

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Re: Sober for October - Those who are determined to make one cave in
« Reply #20 on: October 03, 2014, 01:23:09 PM »

As an aside, I have a friend who does Sober October nearly every year and we only start to question him when it becomes Sober November. The man doesnít seem to understand that he doesnít have just two options: sober or black-out drunk. He can have a beer.  I think he needed to break his college drinking habits.

Actually, maybe he can't.  In another thread, another poster said that they find abstinence easier than moderation (in that case, it was in the context of dieting).  Perhaps your friend is coming to the same conclusion.

That's really at the core of a lot of alcohol treatment programs. There are, sadly, many people in this world who can't "just have one." It's a terrible disservice to them to try to convince them otherwise. If someone chooses not to drink and have a Sober October or October, November, December, et. al., it's our job to be supportive of that, not undermine them. That includes "questioning."

He is perfectly capable of having one beer. Iíve seen him do it since. He just went through a spell.

And when one month turns into three or six, I think itís perfectly reasonable for friends to question such a decision. Is it monetary? Then we need to adjust our social plans to include less expensive activities. Does he fear he is an alcoholic? Then we need to make our plans with him not bar centric. Is it dietary? Then we need to know what we can serve at gatherings to accommodate him and his newly discovered food restrictions. Is it in solidarity with an alcoholic relative? Then we need to know so we can stop asking about it.

Goosey

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Re: Sober for October - Those who are determined to make one cave in
« Reply #21 on: October 03, 2014, 01:27:26 PM »
^ You could not do anything and just decide he's an adult who can make his own choices regarding his social life and alcohol consumption.

If it's monetary, he'd stop coming so often. If he fears he's an alcoholic, being around others drinking without drinking is part of the process. And it's also not really your business. If it's dietary, again, he's an adult and he can handle it.

If he's saying "no, I don't want to drink" - stop asking! He shouldn't be pestered about it anyways. Maybe he just doesn't want to drink anymore.

TootsNYC

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Re: Sober for October - Those who are determined to make one cave in
« Reply #22 on: October 03, 2014, 01:49:05 PM »
I would not point out the not drinking thing. Instead just order a soda or iced tea at the bar or restaurant.  Or suggest a delicious coffee house (pumpkin latee anyone) or movie or something else fun not alcohol centered. Maybe a cupcakes place for the birthday friend.
Yes people should not pressure you to drink but they won't if you don't bring the subject up.

I'm w/ Alicia.

Just say, "Yes, sure, I'd love to come to the bar."

When it's time to order, just say, "Oh, I'll just have a Sprite."
Then if they say, "Have a beer!" you can say, "I'm not in the mood."

TootsNYC

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Re: Sober for October - Those who are determined to make one cave in
« Reply #23 on: October 03, 2014, 01:58:17 PM »
As an aside, I have a friend who does Sober October nearly every year and we only start to question him when it becomes Sober November. The man doesnít seem to understand that he doesnít have just two options: sober or black-out drunk. He can have a beer.  I think he needed to break his college drinking habits.

Wait--what?

Why are you guys questioning him at all? Why is it any of your business--I don't care how good of friends you all are--whether he drinks alcohol or not?

My vote: stop even paying attention to what -anybody- else ever orders.
Unless it's so yummy looking that you want one too, it's not really anybody's business what I eat or drink.


If he brings it up, say, "whatever." You ask him to join you at a bar, and he can either come or not--bars serve other stuff besides alcohol.
  If he says, "I can't go to the bar, I'm not drinking," then say, "OK, we'll miss you." Or maybe say, "They do serve Coke and Sprite."

(I'll grant you--if he makes a big deal of it all the time, that's a problem--but that's the problem, his boringness, his preachiness. Not his lack of alcohol.)

Be his friend. Back him up. Don't challenge his decisions. I'm appalled, to be honest. Just...it's his business what he puts in his body. Not yours. Not anybody else's.

You're an EHell member--your role should be to have his back, and to remind other people that they have -no- stake in what your friend eats or drinks, and that -they- should back off. Don't defend rude behavior.

People who say, "You can have a beer!" "You should eat dessert!" strike me as people who are not secure in their own decisions and standards. They are not confident in their own choices, and so they assume that if anybody else makes a different choice, they've been personally challenged.
   How wrapped up are -they- in their booze, if they can't be friends with someone who doesn't drink?


Quote
And when one month turns into three or six, I think itís perfectly reasonable for friends to question such a decision. . . .

I disagree. Does his decision hurt him? Is he hurting someone else, or letting them down? I don't think so. So butt out.

Quote
Then we need to know so we can stop asking about it.

How 'bout the group just stops asking anyway, period--now. I'm not sure why anybody would ever need to -start- asking about it.
« Last Edit: October 03, 2014, 02:01:42 PM by TootsNYC »

Twik

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Re: Sober for October - Those who are determined to make one cave in
« Reply #24 on: October 03, 2014, 03:27:09 PM »
Just go and order a soda or whatever and don't even mention that you are not drinking. It sounds like you are purposefully baiting this person and I question why you would do that.

I really don't know why it sounds like that to you. If you've never encountered someone who will insist that you indulge in whatever vice they want to indulge in, they are much better turned down at the start, then at the scene where they are practically force-feeding you the indulgence in question.

I think Hollanda handled it very well. If someone takes "No, I don't want to go out drinking," as baiting, that is their problem, not hers, as they are clearly not rational.
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darkprincess

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Re: Sober for October - Those who are determined to make one cave in
« Reply #25 on: October 03, 2014, 05:07:17 PM »
Hollanda, I think you did fine based on the update about his history of being pushy. Good job.

I have lots of different social circles, some drink in moderation, some drink heavily, some are religiously against alcohol.
Oddly enough I have similar social circles in relation to coffee.

I have learned through trial and error that when I want to a beverage alcohol/coffee/water...I order it no matter what group I am with. If I don't want an alcoholic beverage or espresso drink I just don't get one, no matter the social circle. I no longer warn people in advance, tell the anti-alcohol person I am having wine with dinner, or the heavy drinker that I am don't feel like drinking that night. Oddly enough the heavy drinkers make more comments if I have wine instead of hard liquor than if I drink sprite. The people who are religiously against alcohol and coffee are equally upset if I have a cup of coffee, an expensive Starbuck concoction, wine, or row of shots  ::) If someone objects and makes mention of whatever I am drinking I simply point out that it is none of their business. If they say anything in response I let them know that maybe they aren't in the mood to hang out with me tonight. Third comment I pay my bill immediately and leave and let them know I will see them when they feel better about hanging out. Currently there is only one person who still seems to care what I am drinking and instead of saying anything she makes a big show of moving her chair away from the beverage, acting like it is a poisonous snake that is going to attack her, but she stopped making comments after I walked out of the restaurant in the middle of our meal.

MrTango

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Re: Sober for October - Those who are determined to make one cave in
« Reply #26 on: October 04, 2014, 02:44:56 PM »
I don't see any benefit of advertising that you're not drinking or that you won't be drinking.

If someone invites you go to out with them and you decide to take them up on the offer, I'd recommend not saying anything about whether you will be drinking.  When you get where you're going, order a Coke or whatever you want to drink (again, no need to say that you aren't drinking alcohol, just order what you're going to have).

That way, you aren't even bringing up the topic of not drinking.

Mental Magpie

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Re: Sober for October - Those who are determined to make one cave in
« Reply #27 on: October 04, 2014, 03:12:03 PM »
I don't see any benefit of advertising that you're not drinking or that you won't be drinking.

If someone invites you go to out with them and you decide to take them up on the offer, I'd recommend not saying anything about whether you will be drinking.  When you get where you're going, order a Coke or whatever you want to drink (again, no need to say that you aren't drinking alcohol, just order what you're going to have).

That way, you aren't even bringing up the topic of not drinking.

Except she will be saying what she's having as she's ordering, which will then tip off the person that she isn't having alcohol.  She suspects he would have caused a scene in person, so forewarned him to avoid that. 

Tea Drinker

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Re: Sober for October - Those who are determined to make one cave in
« Reply #28 on: October 04, 2014, 04:47:23 PM »
I don't see any benefit of advertising that you're not drinking or that you won't be drinking.

If someone invites you go to out with them and you decide to take them up on the offer, I'd recommend not saying anything about whether you will be drinking.  When you get where you're going, order a Coke or whatever you want to drink (again, no need to say that you aren't drinking alcohol, just order what you're going to have).

That way, you aren't even bringing up the topic of not drinking.

I think it was an appropriate answer in this case, where the invitation was specifically "have a drink with me" rather than "hang out at the Pig and Thistle."

Given the rest of the conversation as given--where OP's friend asked "what's the point?" and pressured her to agree to drink when she said that she'd be happy to see him, but wasn't drinking--it was probably better to have that conversation over the phone than in person. The people for whom it wouldn't be a big deal if I'm not drinking that night, won't mind me telling them that either ahead of time or at the bar.

If they need someone who will drink with them, best they know ahead of time that she's not it so they can call someone else.
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Onyx_TKD

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Re: Sober for October - Those who are determined to make one cave in
« Reply #29 on: October 04, 2014, 05:41:17 PM »
We all have them.  The "friends" who, when you're on a diet, offer you a cream cake, or when you're trying to quit smoking, offer you a cigarette.  This time, it's Sober for October and they are trying to make me drink.

So called friend on phone last night:
 
SCF: My birthday is tomorrow...fancy a drink with me?
Me: Yeah, I can come out with you for an hour or so, but no boozing for me.
SCF: What's the point in coming out then?
Me: To wish you happy birthday?!
SCF: Yeah but I will feel weird drinking on my own.  Please have a drink with me.
Me: Uh...why would I want to do that?
SCF: One won't hurt and nobody has to know you cheated!
Me: Look, man, I will know. And that's enough.
SCF: Oh please?
Me: I can come out with you, but I am not drinking.  DS needs me, I have to go now.

I'm going to be the voice of dissent here. While the friend shouldn't have pushed on the drinking issue, I think you started the problem by trying to change the terms of the invitation. The invitation wasn't a general "let's get together for my birthday" or even "come hang out with me at [Location]." It was specifically an invitation to go out for "a drink." You clearly understood that he meant alcohol, since you felt the need to clarify you wouldn't be "boozing." There's nothing wrong or unfriendly about having specific plans and expecting invitees to either accept the plans as-is or decline.

If you didn't want to drink, the appropriate answer to that invitation is "no." Instead, you tried to accept the invitation and change the terms--you'd come along and hang out while he drank. But you've said yourself that you find it uncomfortable to be the only one drinking, so why would he to want to do that? You could have declined the original invitation and offered an alternative, e.g., "Sorry, I'm not up for drinking tomorrow. I'd be available for dinner or coffee, if you want. Otherwise, have fun without me!" Then, I would agree that he would absolutely be rude to push you to drink instead. However, you left him in the unpleasant position of either explicitly uninviting you (incredibly rude under most circumstances), changing the activity to suit you, being the only one drinking (uncomfortable), or (rudely) trying to convince you to go along with the original invitation. Unfortunately, he chose the only unambiguously rude option, but you didn't help matters by putting him in that position in the first place.

As an analogy, what if you invited someone to go out to dinner, and they said "Sure! I'll come, but I'm fasting so I'll just hang out while you eat"? Or, you invited someone to go to the Cake Festival to try the sampling menu, and they said "Yeah, I want to go! But I'm dieting, so I'll just get a salad." Or, you invited someone to go see [Horror Film], and they said "Yeah, but I get nightmares from scary films, so I'll bring earplugs and read a book?" Would you be ok with that or would you feel like they'd twisted your invitation into something completely different? There's nothing wrong with fasting, dieting, or not wanting to watch scary movies, but the simple fact is that they're incompatible with certain invitations, and it's the individual's responsibility to accept or decline accordingly.