Charlotte's Dry January® story: Dry January® made me realise you don't need to drink to have a good time

Charlotte | January 2024 | 6 minutes

This was my first Dry January®. At times last year, I found myself drinking too much and, when I went out, was not fully aware of what I was doing, and was not a good example to my children.

I wanted to prove that you don’t always have to have a drink to have a good time.

I would just keep drinking and not really realise when I had had enough. On occasions, I fell over and had to be helped out of a bar. I wouldn’t always remember this which started to worry me. I do enjoy having a drink but sometimes I can overdo it, thinking that I need more to get to the way I want to feel or because I don’t feel drunk enough.

I’ve wanted to do Dry January® for the last couple of years as my drinking has increased since lockdown and I thought this year I’m actually going to do it. I wanted to prove to myself and my family and friends that you don’t always have to have a drink or be drinking to have a good time. I haven’t had one drink since New Year’s Eve. Initially, it felt a bit boring on the weekend not drinking and was quite a challenge when going to a pub or restaurant and choosing not to drink when others around me were. But by the third week, I felt so much more positive.

I enjoyed getting up the next day not feeling tired and just felt ready to get on with the day.

I felt good on Sundays when I would normally feel tired and sometimes not very motivated. I’d been to a bar and around friends to celebrate a birthday and had enjoyed it without a drink. I enjoyed getting up the next day not feeling tired and just felt ready to get on with the day. It is hard sometimes, because other people seem to think and say that you’re going to be boring or less sociable if you’re not drinking alcohol, but actually I felt great when I was out and probably spoke more to people than normal.

I wouldn’t like to give up drinking permanently but I think doing Dry January® has made me realise that when I do drink I don’t need to keep drinking to excess and that actually you don’t always have to drink at all to have a nice time. Hopefully, it will show my children especially that I can be a good example and be in control of my drinking more. This year, I’ve definitely been more in control of my drinking and I am looking forward to doing Dry January® again next year!

Related content