St. Patrick’s Day is one of the biggest drinking days of the year. This Irish-Catholic holiday is filled with green beer a-plenty. The problem is that the days are getting longer. It’s so much nicer out. The weather is less frigid, and you are ready to get out of the house. And if you have a good amount of recovery time under your belt, maybe this holiday is not a big deal to you. But if you’re new to recovery, maybe you only have a year or less in recovery, this holiday could be quite a trigger. I’m going to give you a few tips on how you can stay sober on St. Patrick’s Day.
Try doing something that is Irish, like anything. Maybe you take a dance class, or maybe you try some Irish cuisine, which probably involves meat and potatoes. Just tell people you are carb loading!
Always have an out. One key to being sober is to really identify situations in which you will become triggered. There’s no shame in going to an Irish festival with your friends and just saying, “Hey, you know what, guys, I need to bail. This isn’t good for me.” And there really is no shame in admitting that. So always have an out. I know that there will be mutual help support groups on St. Patty’s Day, so have a mutual help or 12-step schedule with you, and perhaps that’s where you go after your St. Patty’s Day festival. You go to a support group. Always, always have an out. You can make this holiday whatever you want to make it. Maybe you have your own party. Maybe you invite friends over and you guys binge-watch Netflix. You will feel so much better the next day when all of your friends are hungover and you’re passing out the water and the aspirin. You will be more focused and clear-headed than they will be.
Make sure that you have an exit plan for whatever party and/or festival you decide to go to. And really make it your own. This day doesn’t have to be what it used to be. It doesn’t have to be a drunken debauchery that you’re used to. You could have it be a sober party, and it could be just as much fun. And actually, for the Church Hill Irish Festival, the McShin Foundation will be there with a sober tent.
I hope that you found this blog helpful. Let me know how you will be spending St. Patty’s day by commenting below! If you’re still struggling with sobriety and need more support, you can always contact me here for counseling in Richmond, VA and online worldwide.