Find Local Sober Pride EventsAttending a local Alcoholics Anonymous (AA), Narcotics Anonymous (NA) or other recovery meeting can be a great resource to find out what sober events are happening near you. New York City and Denver are examples of cities that specifically plan events that are geared toward sober celebration. Checking with your friends who are also in sobriety and seeing what they have planned can be another way to have a support system during Pride. If you are further along in your sobriety, planning your own event to invite others to can help those who may be just starting their recovery journey.
Celebrate Pride With ConfidenceIf you choose to be around others who are drinking, maintaining your confidence and understanding your potential triggers is key. While some people are more at ease holding a non-alcoholic drink, others may find that they feel better with no beverage at all. Preparing for others to ask why you aren’t drinking can also be a good idea, and depending on your personal level of comfort, it is completely up to you how “out” you want to be about your sobriety. No answer for why you aren’t drinking is a wrong answer, and in most cases, those around you will respect your boundaries.
Bring a Sober FriendRedefining your relationship with Pride can also mean creating new and more meaningful experiences, especially if you have a sober friend with whom you can create new memories. Having someone you can trust and who is also in recovery can help hold you accountable for your choices and also help you understand the situations in which you feel vulnerable, such as feeling hungry, angry, lonely or tired. Prior to going out, let your friend know what support you need when you experience triggers so you can both feel more at ease in your surroundings.
Plan an Exit StrategyOne of the best tools to bring with you to Pride is your exit strategy in case the celebration becomes too overwhelming. A good exit strategy includes:
- A way to excuse yourself from the situation in a way that you feel comfortable employing.
- A space you can go to where you feel safe and supported, whether it be with friends, family, in the security of your own home or on the telephone with your sponsor.