Society seems obsessed with the consumption of alcohol, at least in London. It’s a big part of people’s lives. It always has been after all London is known for its pubs.
But, what if you don’t want to drink alcohol at all?
I made a decision not to drink alcohol in my late teens but it’s been harder than you’d think.
I was introduced to alcohol and its effects on people at a young age. My Father, a caring and loving man, was an alcoholic and had been drinking since his early teens. He came from long line of addicts and I know it’s in my genetics. The fear of being the drunk version of my dad is enough to make me want to forgo drinking.
My peers began drinking quite young and I myself had my first proper drink on new years at the age of sixteen. I’ve drunk a few times since then but never to an inebriated state.
The thought of losing control because of alcohol is terrifying as someone with severe anxiety and control issues. I’ve found it curious how people will laugh about losing large amounts of time because to me that was a nightmare. The fact that this behaviour is kind of normalised in society is (to me) very dangerous.
To someone who has watched the extremely negative consequences of alcohol addiction it is just not something to laugh about.
Alcohol can change the best people into the worst and I’ve experienced that first hand. It’s definitely nothing to laugh at.
Avoiding alcohol is harder than you’d think.
London culture is heavily influenced by alcohol. It’s how people socialise, celebrate and bid farewell. The English have been known for their love of drink as well as our Irish and Scottish counterparts.
Telling people, you don’t drink isn’t straight forward, they always ask why and how and about a billion other questions. It’s as if you’re some mystical creature especially when you’re in your early twenties like me. Prime binge drinking age.
I’ll hopefully be heading to university in September and that will open a whole new can of worms when it comes to alcohol.
There’s a part of me that fears I’ll be losing out on the real University experience by not drinking or well going out in general. The thing is I’m mature for my age I’ve tried these things and have decided I don’t like them and that’s okay, at least consciously.
Subconsciously I’m still an eleven year old scared that I won’t make any friends at my new school.
So, how do you at least try to stay sober?
Be skint – Again London has its particularities in that the alcohol costs an arm and a leg so not having money to have more than one drink is pretty useful.
Don’t give into peer-pressure- I’m not a big believer in peer pressure, believe you make your own choices of your own free will but I definitely feel the feeling of otherness that comes with not drinking. However, remember you are an adult, you get to make your decisions and in the end, that’s all that matters. Plus, if people are really that upset about you not drinking they themselves are toxic. Tell them goodbye and get some new friends.
I hope you found this insightful. Please comment below your experiences with alcohol or lack of and make sure to follow so you never miss a post.
Thank you for reading,