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Old 04-08-2016, 12:06 PM
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Vacations

Hi guys,
When did you guys feel ok to go on vacations and visit old drinking places? My husband wants to go to Vegas for his 30th birthday and I don't think it will be a problem but I obviously know the temptations of Vegas. We use to go there a lot and party. I would go with an obvious game plan to do other things...sightseeing, restaurants, shows etc. He would how ever be drinking a lot of the trip and we would go to a few bars on the night of his birthday. I've gone to bars a couple of times and a few parties during the holidays and not had a problem drinking my sprite.

Also what do you guys think of O'douls? Is it okay to drink that at a bar?

Thanks!
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Old 04-08-2016, 12:15 PM
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I think trying to live one's old drinking life, while sober, is a mistake.

Sobriety is a change. A big change. And it takes big changes in our life to ensure that recovery occurs. Going to Vegas, visiting bars, drinking fake beer...what's changed?
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Old 04-08-2016, 12:23 PM
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Originally Posted by doggonecarl View Post
I think trying to live one's old drinking life, while sober, is a mistake.

Sobriety is a change. A big change. And it takes big changes in our life to ensure that recovery occurs. Going to Vegas, visiting bars, drinking fake beer...what's changed?
yes it is. I guess I see your point in a way but I also don't think life should become miserable or that I should be homebound for the next 40 years. I'm 30 years old and I would have no social life if I never attended a party or went to a bar. I also am married to a man that doesn't have a problem with alcohol at all and I can't ask him to stop drinking because of my problem. I guess to me the change would be not drinking and still enjoying myself and having fun with my husband.
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Old 04-08-2016, 12:40 PM
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Usually from what I have seen people have a period where they avoid all situations that may involve drinking or people who do, then maybe with a measure of caution go back occasionally. That's what I did and it was very lonely and difficult however I had good company here at SR and got through it, also have a bf and well, tons of Netflix LOL.

But I don't mean going to bars, just going back to visit friends who are known to drink. Going to Vegas sounds like being in CandyLand, personally I couldn't do it. As far as O'Douls I'd say playing with fire. Hard to believe but most (not all) desire for alcohol will abate with enough abstinence and like anything you have to go at it pretty hard and dedicatedly at least in the beginning.
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Old 04-08-2016, 12:41 PM
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There's no need to be home bound for 40 years either... There's plenty out there, you will see it just takes an adjustment period.
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Old 04-08-2016, 12:51 PM
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Originally Posted by girlygirl23 View Post
I'm 30 years old and I would have no social life if I never attended a party or went to a bar.
That's a pretty common myth that alcoholics believe. The reality is that the majority of our population either drinks very little/moderately or not at all. AKA - most people spend their social life in a lot of different places than bars and drinking parties.

As Carl mentioned, sobriety is a big change for an alcoholic...but it's not like you are being quarantined to some odd place, you are now just going to start doing things that most other people do. It's entirely possible to see the world, travel, enjoy life to the fullest without drinking. People do it every single day all around the world.

Yes - if your husband is intent on going places where drinking is the ONLY planned activity, you might need to spend time elsewhere. Even in Las Vegas there are plenty of places to go and things to do without drinking.
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Old 04-08-2016, 01:07 PM
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Maybe 10 years ago +/- I thought the fake beer would be ok, I was cutting up firewood and had a six pack, the AV took over and I didn't really realize at the time, it said, hey Andrew this stuff tastes the same, cost the same so why not just buy what you like, I did which ended up being a two week binge, not a good thing for a single parent of two teenagers to have done and my daughter to this day holds it against me.

For me going to a bar with my significant other would be fine as she doesn't drink, simply doesn't like the taste however it's rare that we do. There is a pub that has amazing food not far from her house that we have been to a few times and I was fine, actually felt sorry for those drunk.

I was in Cuba at an all inclusive in March last year and it took everything in me to stay away from the booze, I would leave the resort almost daily and do something as the temptation was simply red lining what I could handle.

I fully understand we are all different, some could handle it no problem, others would slip. We are headed to Mexico in a couple of weeks however we chose an all inclusive resort that does not serve alcohol, our safety net.

All the best
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Old 04-08-2016, 01:45 PM
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Originally Posted by ScottFromWI View Post
That's a pretty common myth that alcoholics believe. The reality is that the majority of our population either drinks very little/moderately or not at all. AKA - most people spend their social life in a lot of different places than bars and drinking parties.

As Carl mentioned, sobriety is a big change for an alcoholic...but it's not like you are being quarantined to some odd place, you are now just going to start doing things that most other people do. It's entirely possible to see the world, travel, enjoy life to the fullest without drinking. People do it every single day all around the world.

Scott , what's a common myth? That's my whole point I would like to live like the majority of our population and go to a bar for a friends birthday party or attend a Christmas party. I would not be drinking only
Yes - if your husband is intent on going places where drinking is the ONLY planned activity, you might need to spend time elsewhere. Even in Las Vegas there are plenty of places to go and things to do without drinking.
Scott ,what a common myth?that's my whole point. I don't want to let my alcoholism stop me from living my life and enjoying it to the fullest.I would like to live like the majority of our population and go to a bar for a friends birthday party or attend a Christmas party. Although there would be drinking going on by some I would not drink. I guess i'm confused?? As alcoholics should we stay away from all drinking places or temptation? I personally drank most places that i now go to sober....restaurants, pools, movie theaters, friends houses, concerts, sporting events, comedy shows,brunches, etc.
I think he is saying that I must stay away from places that people drink at and I think that's almost in possible in this day and age. Even in a bar or nightclub there are people not drinking and still having fun. I enjoy dancing and would hate to never do that again. I've never been dancing in a place that doesn't have alcohol . I guess i'm trying to understand the do's and don't and i don't want to be na´ve and disrupt my sobriety. I also don't want to be bored as hell and stay in the house and never travel to fun places that i used to drink at. Although if that's what I've got to do then ill do it and make the best of my new life.

I want to do everything with in reason that most people do. I want to live my life, travel and enjoy myself.
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Old 04-08-2016, 02:09 PM
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yes it is. I guess I see your point in a way but I also don't think life should become miserable or that I should be homebound for the next 40 years
You're kind of painting a picture where your only choices are Vegas or sitting at home...and that's just not true.

I found I had to recalibrate my sense of fun - my fun had come from a bottle for so long, I'd forgotten that you can have fun without alcohol.

This is actually a golden opportunity.

There's many places you could go on vacation where there'd be a ton of things to do and enjoy and you'd never have to see a bottle of booze or a cocktail or be around drinkers, or drink O'Douls to fit in.

Obviously you want to prove a point here..the point being nothing has to change in your life but you not drinking.

It wasn't possible for me, but I genuinely wish you well with that....but what if you go and you're miserable because everyone's drinking but you? How will you handle that?

D
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Old 04-08-2016, 02:14 PM
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I have no problem going to a bar and ordering a soft drink. That said, I find that I don't go to bars much at all anymore. Too much other fun stuff to do. As for "near beer", I never saw the point as I drank beer to get drunk, period.
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Old 04-08-2016, 02:15 PM
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Originally Posted by girlygirl23 View Post
Scott ,what a common myth?that's my whole point.

I want to do everything with in reason that most people do. I want to live my life, travel and enjoy myself.
The myth is that you need to drink alcohol to have fun or to be around people who are drinking to have fun.

Another common myth is that "everyone drinks".

You can not only do everything you want to do without alcohol, you can actually do MORE things sober than you could while you were drinking.
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Old 04-08-2016, 02:15 PM
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Originally Posted by girlygirl23 View Post
...I also am married to a man that doesn't have a problem with alcohol at all and I can't ask him to stop drinking because of my problem.
Actually you can, at least not around you, and if it's important to him and he really doesn't have a problem of his own, he'll be happy to oblige to keep you safe and secure.

I think a lot depends on how big a problem you had, and how long you have been sober.

I go to Vegas often on business trips and it does not bother me, five years in. I wouldn't go on a Vegas drinking birthday party weekend with anyone, not because I'm afraid I would drink but because it would not be fun - in fact it would annoy me. However I'd be fine going on a Vegas birthday party weekend where the focus wasn't on getting drunk.

6 months in, I would not have gone at all because it would have been too stressful for me, whether or not I would have stayed sober.
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Old 04-08-2016, 02:28 PM
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This is off topic but I should add...

I forgot to say that I have a fully stocked bar in my home. My husband drinks occasionally ( about once every 2 to 3 months) and we entertain at our home monthly. I host a book club at my home every month and regularly buy and serve my friends my old favorite wine. All of my friends drink but are not big drinkers. I've never touched the bar since i chose to stop drinking. Even on my worst days i don't think about going near it. I also buy alcohol as gifts for people.

I guess I've always thought that i have to learn to function without alcohol and that it's always going to be an option. I just have to make the right chose and not pick up the next drink. Maybe this is na´ve and maybe i'm setting my self up for failure but so far it's worked.

I guess i think of it like a man cheating. A lot of people deal with cheating by telling people they can't go to certain places. Really if you want to cheat you can do from your computer, phone, etc. you don't have to go to bar or club to find someone. If i want to drink i can walk in the other room and get drink or go to the store.

I don't know i'm just trying to make my life the best life possible without alcohol.
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Old 04-08-2016, 02:30 PM
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When I got sober following a three-year relapse, I didn't believe that I could never again enjoy life because I was intent on achieving sobriety, but because I felt so broken when I finally put down the drink. I was probably in a much different place than you are in that I was older than you, had lived a generally exciting, meaningful and sober life for the twenty five years I was sober (and for parts of some of the years before that), before I picked up the drink again in 2011. I didn't feel as though I was missing something by not doing things where alcohol was prominent. I wasn't at all interested in how exciting my life could or could not be. I was only interested in getting sober, and those who know me know that I did everything I could to get there.

There were flashes and streaks of excitement during my first year or two post-relapse, such as the prospect of coordinating a major research study in my field that had, at that point, produced breakthrough findings. I did not get the job. I was sober for about eight months at the time, eminently qualified, but I'm certain that the outward expression of my enthusiasm was not would it might have been under different circumstances. I was also still more than a little foggy, and was unable to express myself as well as I usually do. I took the rejection hard, and it affected me for more time than I would have liked, in part because it was an opportunity to catapult myself back to a level that was close to my professional standing when I destroyed all that with my drinking. A few months later, I was offered a similar position at another university hospital, but the commute would have been brutal. I wasn't fully aware of this until I completed the roundtrip to and from the interview.

Though I was, in both cases, extremely discouraged, I also needed to face facts. There was no shortcut for me to get back to where I was, personally and professionally, before I once again destroyed all that was good in my life. For better or worse, I was a much different person than I'd ever been when I put down the drink the second time, and I needed to build a life that supported my sobriety.

There's a big gap between having fun during sobriety, whether it's doing things in new or familiar places where drinking is taking place, and being a hermit. Framing life in such a bipolar fashion doesn't do justice to what we can actually do in real life. If we have a desire to have fun, to live an exciting life that stimulates us, then that's what we need to do. Living an exciting life and staying sober are not mutually exclusive. The very opposite has been true for me.

I can't or won't tell you what to do. Again, I'm older than you, and I no longer seek the kinds of thrills or excitement that someone thirty years old might be interested in. I was sober when I was thirty, and I was all over the map with activity in virtually every part of my life, and I'm happy for that. That doesn't mean I'm no longer active, or that I no longer experience excitement. The party is far from over, but it's certainly changed locations. I'm interested in newer, different things in my life than I was when I was thirty years old, and I think that's a good thing.
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Old 04-08-2016, 02:32 PM
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Originally Posted by Dee74 View Post
You're kind of painting a picture where your only choices are Vegas or sitting at home...and that's just not true.

I found I had to recalibrate my sense of fun - my fun had come from a bottle for so long, I'd forgotten that you can have fun without alcohol.

This is actually a golden opportunity.

There's many places you could go on vacation where there'd be a ton of things to do and enjoy and you'd never have to see a bottle of booze or a cocktail or be around drinkers, or drink O'Douls to fit in.


Obviously you want to prove a point here..the point being nothing has to change in your life but you not drinking.

It wasn't possible for me, but I genuinely wish you well with that....but what if you go and you're miserable because everyone's drinking but you? How will you handle that?

D
Very true Dee! I guess i just assume that any vacation would have people drinking. I went to Mexico last month and people were drinking every where. Although sin city will be much more then most places. Thanks for your post!
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Old 04-08-2016, 02:41 PM
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Originally Posted by JeffreyAK View Post
Actually you can, at least not around you, and if it's important to him and he really doesn't have a problem of his own, he'll be happy to oblige to keep you safe and secure.

I think a lot depends on how big a problem you had, and how long you have been sober.

I go to Vegas often on business trips and it does not bother me, five years in. I wouldn't go on a Vegas drinking birthday party weekend with anyone, not because I'm afraid I would drink but because it would not be fun - in fact it would annoy me. However I'd be fine going on a Vegas birthday party weekend where the focus wasn't on getting drunk.

6 months in, I would not have gone at all because it would have been too stressful for me, whether or not I would have stayed sober.
I see your point Jeffery. I'm sure my husband would stop drinking if i asked or if he thought i couldn't be around it but as of right now it's not a problem. I will keep it in mind though. Now i'm curious to how many people significant others stop drinking when they did. Thanks!!
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Old 04-09-2016, 04:48 PM
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My husband stopped drinking around me. Occasionally he'll go out with the guys and have one or two, but he never gets drunk. It feels great to know he's so supportive. Getting sober is a HUGE life change-and one that feels so uncomfortable, and I still have to stomp my feet mentally about it from time to time. And he's my partner-he's going through this WITH me-that's just the nature of marriage, in my opinion.

We're going to Mexico in May and he won't drink while we're there. He could, but he won't. We haven't talked about it at all-I just know he wouldn't do anything to make me uncomfortable.

I really try to avoid situations where people are drinking. It's just annoying, it makes me miss drinking when I normally don't even think about it. Our lifestyle/friendships/everything has changed, and I think it was just a necessary part of change and moving on.
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Old 04-09-2016, 05:40 PM
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Nobody can predict how you will react as an individual. We are all different. For me the first drinking event that I attended was a church fundraiser and it included unlimited alcohol. I was less than a month sober. But my wife doesn't drink and as I learned from looking around the room without a drink in my hand perhaps half the people there were not drinking at all either. It was easier than I thought. On the other hand for me at least going to Vegas with a drinking spouse is simply a higher risk situation. Personally I would not want to do this yet. YMMV. Good Luck.
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Old 04-09-2016, 06:21 PM
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The whole point of sobriety is to lead a full, rich, and happy life without alcohol. For most of us being in drinking situations is uncomfortable at best and will lead us back to drinking at the worst.

What you are proposing is to change nothing in your life other than you not drinking.

If you can pull this off more power to you. Unfortunately I have never met an alcoholic here or in AA that could
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Old 04-09-2016, 11:36 PM
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I agree with jeffrey's line of thinking. I went to a bar tonight- for a function (charity auction/drag show thing). That's really the only way I go to bars, if a primary activity is involved, usually music.

Like Jeffrey, I have to watch out not for temptation, but for annoyance. For someone who drank himself to the point of needing sobriety, I sure do have a short fuse with drunks. Also, just being at a bar without something I enjoy going on would be an absolute bore for me. Remove my old reason for being there and there's just nothing but gaudy atmosphere and alot of straining to converse over the noise. Screw that.
I know Vegas has stuff to do, but damn that place is harsh to even look at for me without a buzz. If you've been there sober before, no prob. You do seem to have your stuff together. -if youve only seen it with beer tinted glasses, you may be disappointed.
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