From Temptation to Triumph: A Sober Perspective on Watching Others Indulge in Wine


My husband and I went to City Winery for a 10,000 Maniacs show last night. After a comedy of errors in our dinner plans, we decided to eat at the venue. We did not want to be the first people at the show, so first, we enjoyed dinner in the adjoining restaurant. We got a cute little table right next to the big, roaring fireplace. We had fun ordering a bunch of little plates and sharing. Truffle fries and burrata. Lox flatbread and kale Caesar salad. I had an NA sangria to drink. It was a bunch of tart fruit juices. It looked like an aperol spritz, and it came in a pretty glass. My husband had an Athletic Brew beer. We ended with chocolate mousse and coffee.


Then we headed to the concert room. The seats and tables are really close together at this venue, making for an intimate concert experience. As the name implies, wine is obviously a big theme. The space is full of bottles and barrels as decor. The establishment gives away a signed bottle from the band. Right down the...

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The Truth About Pretending to Drink When You're Sober

One thing that prevented me from addressing my complicated relationship with alcohol for so long was the fear of social stigma. I was also afraid to fail, but I was more afraid of success. If I quit drinking, then what? Then, actually, what? 

I would no longer fit into my social circles. I risked rejection and losing friendships. I would feel ostracized and excluded. I would be left out, alone, misunderstood, and judged. I would not fit into my 20-year marriage anymore. 

My husband and I met at a bar. We were party people. It’s part of what attracted us to each other. It wasn’t fair to him that I was considering changing the game for us without warning. This wasn’t what he signed up for. I was so ashamed. 

I was scared that I would not fit into my neighborhood, my friend group, my happy hour work crew, or any other group or activity I have ever done or ever wanted to do because I would no longer be drinking. I would lose the nearly four decades of...

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What Nobody Tells You About Friendships in Sobriety

What happened to my friendships when I got sober?


Navigating friendships and finding people to support you in sobriety can be one of the most challenging parts of getting sober. 


How did my friendships change when I ditched the drink?


I lost people and it hurt.


I have long, complicated, painful, and layered stories of friendships that are now over. There are stories left unwritten. In truth, I still don’t have a full understanding of the endings or what could have been done differently. I am not sure if there’s anyone to blame. I’ve tried blaming myself and I’ve tried blaming them too. 


Endings are sometimes necessary, even when they break your heart. 


I’ve had changes in friendships with people that I love and I always will. I have disconnected with people who have a shared history with me and hold my deepest secrets. There are friends from childhood, who I have drifted from, and these...

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