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Survived an Addiction? Here’s How to Have Fun Soberly

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Survived an Addiction

There’s this novel idea for people who want to recover from a substance abuse disorder (SUD). It’s called California sobriety, and it’s about cutting back from alcohol or marijuana instead of letting oneself indulge in them. The argument is you must eliminate harmful or addictive substances like opioids and replace them with alternatives that are theoretically less harmful—like cigarettes, alcohol, and weed. With this, one is less likely to relapse or, worse, die. Simply put, it’s doing everything in moderation and choosing substances that are theoretically less likely to put your health in danger.

But there is a lot of risk to choosing this option because it’s not scientifically backed. Why not opt for addiction treatment and recovery strategies that have stood the test of time and are medically proven to work for millions and millions of survivors? It will not be easy, especially for those with a background in social drinking and partying, but the goals are always worth it. 

People in recovery—especially those who have a background in partying—may have a hard time having fun without drugs or alcohol and going cold turkey. But it’s possible. Here are some helpful pointers for having fun in a social setting without doing drugs or getting drunk.

Choose your friends wisely

If you have been battling addiction for a while now, you must know how big a part your inner circle plays in what you let into your life. Research shows that choosing friends who don’t use drugs will help minimize the risk for substance use in general.

Of course, one is more likely to do drugs if there are people close to them influencing them to do so, but many forget this while they are in the throes of an intense rave. As long as they enjoy the highs a drug-induced party can bring, they are always susceptible to doing a line when someone invites them to do so or to accept a bong if someone passes it on to them.

If you are in recovery or are genetically predisposed to developing drug addiction or alcoholism, surround yourself with friends who are clean and sober. Dr. Henry Cloud, known for his book Boundaries, wisely said, “We cause much of our pain by the people we choose.” Do not underestimate how your close relationships can determine your future. Choose safe people—ones who know how to have a good time without touching harmful substances.

Organize wholesome gatherings and parties

Here’s something every person in recovery needs to know: The rave scene is overrated. It’s hot, people are sweaty and sticky, and not to mention, the world is still in the middle of a deadly pandemic. You don’t need to go to a club to have fun.

If you have people who you love and trust, you can still have so much fun with them through wholesome parties and gatherings. These don’t have to be lame just because there are no drugs or alcohol involved. Here are some ideas you can consider:

  • If any of your family members and friends have a competitive spirit, host a fun game night. Who says an intense round of Jenga can’t provide a (non-harmful) high? You can make it a regular thing, and you can change the theme every meeting. You can opt for table-top games for one meeting, then an escape room for the next. It’s such a fun and wholesome way to bring people together.
  • Another party that won’t require substances is a food party. If you have family members and friends who come from different cultures and contexts, you can organize lunch or dinner parties. Have everyone bring a signature dish from their country or hometown. It’s a wonderful way to get to know more about your loved ones, and nothing brings people together more than good food.
  • If exercise is a big part of your journey to recovery, you can organize a workout party. It doesn’t have to be intense or stressful, especially for guests who dislike working out. You can make it fun by choosing party-related workouts like a Zumba session or a BODYJAM home workout.

If your addiction was developed because of partying, don’t fret. It’s still possible to enjoy social settings without touching a drop of alcohol or drugs. Total sobriety may be hard, but you—your life, health, and future—are always worth the difficult changes you go through. Lean hard on the people who love you during this time, and remember you’re not alone.

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