Halloween is just around the corner, and with it one of the ‘great’ American pastimes. We live in a culture that glorifies alcohol, and that can make staying sober difficult. If you’re worried about the upcoming festivities and their potential negative effects on your sobriety, don’t worry, you’re not alone.
Staying sober over holidays like Halloween can be harder than maintaining your sobriety on a daily basis, because it seems like everyone else is drinking. However, you don’t have to stress.
If all you’re doing is sitting around thinking about alcohol or drugs, that will of course make staying sober on Halloween difficult. But you can also take the time to plan your evening so that won’t happen, and you can enjoy a safe, fun and sober Halloween.
1) Plan to Stay Active
If you’re bored, lonely, or even too tired, it makes giving in to the temptation of alcohol easier. Willpower is an exhaustible resource, and you should take the steps to ensure that you’re happy, comfortable, and read to resist if alcohol comes along. That means planning your evening, thinking of fun things to do, and keeping yourself busy with things that you love to do.
What can you do on Halloween? Dancing, trick or treating in an adult friendly area, themed roller skating, haunted houses, horror themed board games, or even just spend time with friends and family.
If you check for events in your area, you might be able to plan a full evening for yourself and friends, without ever having to sit around while everyone else is drinking. Activity also releases endorphins in your brain, so you’ll automatically feel better and will be less likely to give in to your addiction, so try to plan in dancing or roller skating.
2) Attend a Sober Halloween Party
Many associations hold sober events, which you can attend for Halloween. While the events in question will vary depending on the organization, you can check with your sobriety group to see if they are holding an event.
In addition, if you aren’t currently a member of a sobriety group, you can likely still attend an event as a guest. Having fun with other sober people can be a great way to remind yourself that fun doesn’t have to involve alcohol.
3) Go Out with Sober Friends
If you have friends who are sober, try spending time with them. It’s important that take precautions to avoid friends who will tempt you to drink, even if they simply don’t understand your motivations for being sober. Your sobriety is important to you and any friends you spend time with on a holiday should be aware of that.
Many people don’t drink, and they will likely have plenty of fun filled ideas for your Halloween. Just, try not to spend your Halloween alone. You could end up feeling sorry for yourself, which will make you more likely to give in.
4) Ask Someone to be Your “Sober Buddy”
Staying sober can be hard. If you know that you’ll be around people who will be drinking, or you’re tempted at all, it’s important to have someone you can call to talk to. You can ask someone from your sobriety group, a friend, or a family member to help.
However, it can be difficult to admit to wanting a drink to a friend or family member, so you’ll be much more likely to call and talk to someone who knows what you’re going through. And, if your sobriety buddy is also trying to stay sober over Halloween, you can motivate each other.
However, you should remember that there is no shame in asking for help, and your family members will respect that you are asking for help instead of losing your sobriety.
5) Plan to Have Fun
There are plenty of fun things to do on Halloween that have nothing to do with alcohol. If you can remind yourself that you’re going to have fun following through on your plans, spending time with your friends, and even dressing up, you’ll be a lot less likely to think about how much alcohol you could be drinking.
6) Make Your Own Costume
Halloween is all about costumes and it’s more than acceptable for adults to dress up and go just about anywhere. Art therapy is an accepted way to combat the temptation of alcohol and other addictions, and creating your own costume will give you something to think about before and during Halloween. Plus, you’ll be able to have fun showing off your costume to your friends.
7) Be Prepared for Temptation
No holiday is easy for a recovering addict and you shouldn’t expect it to be. You might find someone trying to offer you a drink, you might accidentally walk by one of your old watering holes, and you might meet people who make you want to drink. The trick is to plan to try to avoid these situations, aim to have fun, and have a backup plan in the form of someone to talk to in case things go wrong.
Halloween can be a lot of fun, even if you aren’t into haunted houses and costumes. There are plenty of events in most cities and sober people around the world that you can spend time and have fun with. Enjoy your sober Halloween!