There are many social obligations that involve alcohol. For example, maybe you are going on a first date. Or, maybe you have to go to a holiday party for work. Maybe you must attend a high school reunion, or you are simply out to dinner with new friends. It can be difficult to say no to alcohol or drugs without embarrassment. However, it is possible to enjoy these activities as well as keep your sobriety. In order to disclose your addiction to someone, it is important to be prepared with well-practiced responses and a prearranged escape plan for different scenarios.
If You Are Still Using
Worrying about how to say no to alcohol or wondering how to tell someone you are an addict is an essential first step toward recovering from your addiction and staying sober. By acknowledging your problem of addiction, you have already overcome denial. Many people consider this as the biggest hurdle to getting sober. After you have acknowledged your problem to your own self, you can then tell other people and disclose your addiction to others. Start a conversation with a trusted friend, family member, or colleague when you are sober, or at least calm. Avoid choosing someone who also abuses alcohol or drugs. Say something along the lines of, “I abuse alcohol and/or drugs, and I have not been able to quit by myself. I think I need help because I am an addict.” If the person you are speaking with does not believe you or will not help, seek other options, and call The Ranch PA. We are a trusted treatment center and can help you decide whether or not you need treatment.
After Sobriety: Keeping It Simple for First Impressions
Telling someone that you are an alcoholic or drug addict can feel overwhelming, especially if you do not know the person you are talking to that well. You do not have to share the details of your addiction with them if you do not feel comfortable. Additionally, you definitely should not accept a drink or take drugs just to avoid embarrassment, as this will be detrimental to any progress you have made in quitting your addiction. Instead, practice telling the truth in a low-profile, low-stress way. Try practicing short and straightforward responses, such as “Thanks for the offer, but I just do not feel good after I drink, even in small amounts.” You can also try, “No, thanks. I’m working on improving my health right now, and I just cannot drink or use drugs.” You do not need to explain yourself in any additional way. Good friends will understand that your health comes first, and should not pressure you to drink or use drugs in any situation.
How To Disclose Your Addiction When the Time is Right
As time passes, and you get to know your new friends better, you may become comfortable enough to talk about your past. Be honest and stay calm. Choose a time when you can speak privately and without interruption. Although you do not have to share every last detail of your past, you could say something similar to: “I do not drink or do drugs because I am recovering from addiction,” or “In the past, I spent time in rehab for addiction.” You may be surprised to discover that your new friend also has experience with addiction — whether his or her own struggles or that of a loved one. Millions of Americans and their family members deal with substance abuse problems every day. Be honest and clear — and don’t be afraid to ask for help if you think you are in danger of relapse. A real friend will help you stay sober. Call The Ranch PA at 717.969.9126. We can help you overcome your addiction and give you the tools you need to disclose your addiction to others. You are not alone. (Photo via)