One of the hardest things when you stop drinking is the constant questions of why you are not doing something that is classed as a habitual thing to do. The questions almost make you feel as if you’re the anomaly, doing something that has never been done before.
At first, I felt the need to explain myself and respond with a long-winded story as to why I no longer feel the need to drink a questionable substance to gain a short high. It took some time to feel comfortable responding with a completely to the point and truthful answer. You will get there too but, in the meantime, here are 6 ways to respond to the over-asked question of ‘Why have you stopped drinking?’
1. “I just want to be healthier”
I had a lot of fun drinking in the past but now I’m being kinder to my body. In a world where everyone wants to become a better and healthier version of themselves, it’s fair to say cutting out alcohol is a way toward becoming a healthier you and therefore a good answer when asked for your reasoning.
2. “I’m trying something new”
Although, people may not fully resonate with someone who is trying something they, themselves would never consider attempting, they admire it. While I am all about owning your decision and not being afraid to voice it, you do not need to tell people that this is a forever thing. You could, instead, state that you’re cutting out alcohol for ‘x’ amount of time. This will prevent more questions being asked as they think it’s only temporary, but before you know it, it has become the norm and they no longer think twice about your alcohol-free journey.
3. ” I want to be more present in the moment”
Now this one may spark a conversation, but this is definitely one of my main reasons for deleting drink from my life. We seem to drink alcohol during the moments in life that you would usually want to treasure, like celebrating with friends and family, commemorating a big achievement or seeing in a new year. These are all things you want to fully remember and embrace, yet we take a drug that will change the person we are in that moment and mask it completely so that we cannot remember those treasurable memories.
4. “I can”t do the hangovers anymore”
Here is one that everyone understands and whenever I respond with this one, I see a sea of nods all in agreeance.
This one also relates back to the last point of ‘being in the moment’ and really enjoying life to its fullest. For me, I would literally have to write the next day off after going on a night out. This meant not only did I have a blurry recollection of events of the previous night, but I also spent the whole day feeling very sorry for myself and most of the time full of regret. Now, who wants that?
5. “I’m so done waking up every morning thinking – Oh crap!”
As humans we have a natural desire to have control over our lives, it makes us feel in order, stable and safe. However, when we consume this annoyingly addictive substance, we completely lose this self-control. It’s an actual fact that alcohol blurs the signal sent to the brain to warn us that we are making a mistake. Therefore, its completely reasonable to say that you want to be in control of yourself and prevent yourself from something that you regret and sometimes don’t even remember doing.
6. “I just don’t drink anymore”
I left this one until last as although this may not help you at first, this is the one you will eventually be able to say and it’s the most perfect response. Why? Because you don’t have to give a reason or explain to anyone why you’re doing something that makes you happy or makes you a better you. Likewise, when you answer with this you rarely get questioned again; it doesn’t provoke a conversation because it’s a statement with a full stop… or exclamation mark if you say it with conviction.
I have used all of the above responses and many more, but now I use number 6 and number 6 alone. I am extremely proud of the decision I have made and therefore I do not need to explain it to anyone or feel nervous or on edge when asked this, actually very simple question.
The answer will now always be ‘I just don’t drink anymore’.
Welcome to the sober gang! We’re all about bettering ourselves and living in the moment, you’re going to love it here.
Written by Jade Bellis
Jade is a scientist by trade but a writer and teacher at heart. She is always pushing the boundaries of normal life to shape her next adventure. You can find her at @Jadelaurenbellis on Instagram.