Other People’s Feelings
AFFIRMATION: “My alcohol-free life is mine and mine alone. I am choosing the best path for myself.”
Relationships can be complicated. Relationships when we cut the booze can be even more complicated; our choice to remove alcohol from our lives can elicit a variety of responses from those we know and love. While we hope that the overwhelming response to our alcohol-free life is one of support, it’s possible that we’ll encounter resistance, people who don’t think we’re doing it the “right way,” and other challenging responses. In each scenario, we must remind ourselves that others’ reactions to our alcohol-free life have far more to do with them than it does with us. If this feels especially difficult for you, consider adopting a positive affirmation about your choice to remove alcohol, like “my alcohol-free life is mine and mine alone. I am choosing the best path for myself.”
When People Are Not Supportive
You know the feeling if you’ve ever encountered a friend who says “oh come on, not even one?” Or perhaps they’ve even been actively negative about your choice to not drink. There is overwhelming evidence that abstaining from alcohol is better for our physical and emotional health, but it still brings up strong emotions for people when we break the norm in our drinking culture. There are many reasons someone might react negatively about your new alcohol-free life, and every single one of them have to deal with their life and relationship with alcohol, not yours.
When People Say It’s the Wrong Way
Addiction and recovery have definitely stepped into the 21st century in recent years, but there are still some lingering opinions out there that there is only one right way to recover. The truth is, whatever type of recovery (or whatever term you identify with) that works for you is the right way. Modern recovery modalities have yielded a vibrant community of alcohol-free people on a multitude of different paths, and what works for someone else may not be the right fit for you. Remain confident in your path, and invite the other person to support you as you figure out what tools and frameworks work best for your personal AF life.