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How to Support Your Alcohol-Free Friends and Family

it’s for health, seasonal or personal reasons, chances are you know someone who
doesn’t drink. Maybe they did in the past, but recently decided to quit. Maybe
they never even started in the first place. Maybe they rarely, if ever, take a
sip. No matter where they are in the process, they’ve decided to live an
alcohol-free lifestyle.

drinking in an otherwise “alcohol-friendly” society can feel extremely
isolating—even daunting at times. For your friends or family members who have
decided to quit drinking, going alcohol-free can sometimes feel like there’s no
one around to cheer you on. However, choosing an alcohol-free lifestyle is
never something to be ashamed of; in fact, it’s something worth supporting,
even celebrating. Whether you’ve made the choice to go alcohol-free or not, you
can still take important steps to support those in your life who choose not to
drink. Today we discuss simple ways for how to support your alcohol-free friends
and family.

try to understand their reasonings behind the decision. If someone abuses
alcohol and it hurts their relationships, work or health, then choosing to go
alcohol-free is definitely a decision worth celebrating. However, other
decisions can sometimes be harder to understand. Perhaps your friend or family
member never seemed to have any issues with alcohol. Maybe they’ve never even
drank before—they just decided they didn’t want to. Although this might not
make sense, seem fun or even seem like a decision you would make, it’s
important to try and understand their reasonings behind the choice. Only when
you truly empathize with your loved one and see their perspective can you fully
support their choices.

give them options. For people who choose to live alcohol-free, going out and
about with friends or family for events and get-togethers can sometimes feel
like a chore—mostly because there are few, if any, drink options that don’t
include alcohol. Oftentimes, the choice falls between two drinks: plain water
or sugary soda. If you want to support your loved one in their journey towards
a healthier lifestyle, give them some other options. For example, if you host a
party at your home, include choices like juice, lemonade or non-alcoholic
alternatives to wine or beer. When you go out to events with your loved one,
help them find something they can drink that isn’t boring or hyped in sugar.
Getting involved in simple ways like this can truly help your loved one feel
appreciated and encouraged in their efforts to go alcohol-free.

give it a try for yourself. If you’ve ever considered living an alcohol-free
lifestyle, then now is the perfect time to try it out. Join your loved one on
their journey and see how long you can go without drinking alcohol. You might
just find that the benefits of living alcohol-free outweigh those with alcohol.
Not only this, but trying the non-alcoholic life will give you even greater
insight into your friend or family’s experiences, and help build your understanding
for their decision. Try living the alcohol-free lifestyle to show your support
and encouragement for the loved one in your life.

When it
comes to living an alcohol-free lifestyle, it can sometimes feel like a very
lonely road. If you have friends or family members who made the jump to
non-alcoholic, show them your support by getting involved. Understand their
reasonings, give them options and, if possible, give it a try for yourself, to
really learn more about their experiences living alcohol-free.