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Wedding Anxiety

Old 05-09-2015, 01:34 PM
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Wedding Anxiety

Hi guys,
I marked nine months sober this past Monday and am feeling pretty good about where I'm at in my sobriety and the progress I'm making. However, I have a situation today that is causing me a fair amount of booze-related anxiety. Tonight one of my good friends is getting married and I'm starting to feel a little unsettled about dealing with the amount of drinking that will be going on at the wedding. It's going to be a very young wedding with many friends from high school that I've known for a long time and know me as a hard partier. Even now, before the wedding, me and my friends are hanging out in the grooms hotel room and there's a lot of drinking going on. I guess I just feel like I'm not fully participating in the festivities and that might not drinking is going to be conspicuous. And as silly as it might seem, I'm getting pretty nervous about getting on the dance floor tonight. I can't remember the last time that I danced sober. I actually kind of don't even enjoy it that much but booze helped me get into it. Any words of advice that people who have been through similar situations in early sobriety could give would be deeply deeply appreciated! Thanks everybody and have a great rest of the weekend!
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Old 05-09-2015, 02:02 PM
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I would steer clear of the obvious drinking situations. It is perfectly acceptable to attend the ceremony and the dinner and skip the drinking that ensues later. Or hang out with the people that are not drinking....there will be plenty of them. Most won't even notice one way or the other if you are drinking or not. Only alcoholics obsess about those kinds of things.
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Old 05-09-2015, 02:17 PM
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I dunno about you Matt but I don;t remember my brothers wedding cos I was that drunk...I definitely wasn't 'fully participating ' that night.

I think I'm way more a part of things sober.

Have a good night - catch up with old friends - let yourself go on the dance floor

think about the likely scenarios you might face..

* why aren't you drinking?
* wanna drink?
* dealing with cravings
* toasting (I toast with a full glass of whatever soft drink I'm drinking)
* an escape plan if things get rough

you may never face them (no one ever seems to care if I'm drinking or not) but it's good to be prepared

Scott makes excellent suggestions too

D
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Old 05-09-2015, 02:33 PM
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All the above posts is exellent advice
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Old 05-09-2015, 03:01 PM
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I would definitely give some thought to an escape plan, either permanent or temporary. I was in a wedding at 11 months sober and it was very difficult. I tried to beg out of it, but it was my sister's wedding. Everyone who was close to me knew that I wasn't drinking but there were a lot of old friends there who didn't know. I told them outright.

If you're struggling, just excuse yourself instead of drinking. In the end, nobody will really notice.
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Old 05-09-2015, 03:04 PM
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Matt - every time we make it through one of these times without caving we grow stronger. I think you're going to do just fine - and I'm so glad you wanted to discuss it here. You're planning in advance to be challenged, and it's better than thinking you have it made. Imagine how good you're going to feel tomorrow, having enjoyed the festivities with a clear head - not numb and foggy.
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Old 05-09-2015, 03:46 PM
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Matt, I don't have any advice to offer as all the weddings other than one I got hammered. And the one I was sober at, as soon as the dancing started, I just got an uber and got out of there. Was about 2 hours from New York City. As bad as that night was, it still wasn't as bad as the weddings I've been at where I woke up the next day with little recollection of the end of it.

I have a bachelor party next weekend (my brothers) then a weekend off for Memorial Day and then back to back weekends with weddings out of town that I'm absolutely dreading going to.

Let me know how your night goes. I know it's possible to stay sober. Weddings are definitely a lot harder since the expectation is certainly to drink and the two I'm going to coming up will be a challenge.
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Old 05-09-2015, 04:28 PM
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Matt, why not focus on catching up with old friends. You can take a break and step outside if you're tempted to drink. Will you be able to leave if you want to? I hope you enjoy yourself and that this is a chance for you to have fun without alcohol.
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Old 05-09-2015, 04:55 PM
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I found having soda water with a slice of lime- anything in a glass that people wouldn't comment on- was my saving grace. As long as I was holding it and drinking with the rest I had as good a time as the people drinking. I just knew I was going to feel excellent and regret less the next day and they most likely were not!
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Old 05-09-2015, 04:57 PM
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As my sobriety grew stronger-13 years now- I drank whatever the hell I wanted and answered all comments/questions with a smile.
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Old 05-09-2015, 05:09 PM
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I hope you are doing great at the wedding tonight. I know you can do it! Sit back and watch as other people drink too much and start looking foolish, then smile to yourself cause you weren't one of them.
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Old 05-10-2015, 07:25 AM
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Matt, how did the wedding go?

Any tips you can give me as I approach weddings on back-to-back weekends?
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Old 05-10-2015, 10:56 AM
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Come back and tell us about it, no matter if you stuck to sobriety or not. We're here to learn, grow and help one another. Lessons often don't come cheap.
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Old 05-10-2015, 11:34 AM
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There is nothing in my life that is 1/2 as important as my sobriety.

I don't gratuitously immerse myself in situations with a lot of drinking.

I don't stay home if I have a good reason to be there, but I am extremely careful with my sobriety.

I regard it as a gift from God that I try hard to protect.

Sometimes, it means that I don't participate in certain activities (e.g. bachelor parties, even though I was quite a patron of the performing arts when I drank).

I look forward to seeing how your evening went.

All good, I hope.
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Old 05-10-2015, 01:22 PM
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Hi everybody,
I'm happy to report that last night went very well. With your words of encouragement and caution I felt well-prepared for the various situations I was worried about. Like a couple of you said, hardly anyone seemed to care about my non-drinking status. One friend busted my chops earlier in the day for turning down a beer. It was funny, nothing hurtful. Later on he asked me if I wasn't drinking at all and when I told him that I hadn't had a drink in 9 months, he apologized for pressuring me (I told him that I didn't feel any pressure and that no apology was necessary) and told me re was considering giving drinking up himself. I got complimented a few times on my slimmed-down beer-free appearance, got to catch up and share laughs with a lot of old friends, and even made my way onto the dance floor. All in all it was a great night, one that I will be able to cherish for a long time.

One thing I did notice being sober is that not nearly as any people get as sloppily drink as I had always assumed during my drinking. I figured everybody drank to lose control of themselves when in fact most people remarkably drink responsibly. After seeing some of the obnoxious, boorish behavior of the few people who did get bombed, I am so happy I can now be fully present and enjoy celebratory occasions like yesterday. Thanks to everybody who helped me out yesterday, it really want a lot!
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Old 05-10-2015, 01:40 PM
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*****ooo!
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Old 05-10-2015, 02:27 PM
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Great to hear Matt. Nice job.
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Old 05-10-2015, 03:10 PM
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That's good news Matt.
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Old 05-10-2015, 03:45 PM
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Good for you, Matt. It is funny how your perspective changes.
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Old 05-11-2015, 04:02 AM
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Thanks for sharing Matt. The first wedding I have coming up will have nobody there that I've seen this year and feel like I will just use the white lie of "I haven't drank in 9 months" if I get a lot of peer pressure or that good natured ribbing people will give when you turn down a free drink.

I wish I had the weight loss to go along with it, but I don't. Nonetheless, most of the people at the first wedding I have are people that I haven't seen in a very long time, so I can talk about how well I'm doing in my graduate studies and how much I love my job. I still have positive things to share.

Dancing still freaks me out as I don't think I've danced sober ever, but yeah, nobody is going to make fun of me. And similarly, being the sober one, people definitely will NOT be making fun of me or saying how annoying I was the next day.

Again, thanks for sharing. This post has really helped me out since the anxiety I have over back-to-back weddings is really eating at me. I'm currently just on Day 19, but my one slip up was mid-week, so I have now 12-consecutive sober weekends, and overall 81 sober days in the last 82 days.

I know that I need to go to these weddings with the mindset that they will be fun and that they won't involve alcohol and NOT that they'll be miserable because I won't be drinking, or they will only be fun if I drink.
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