Millie’s Sober Spring hacks - Week three

Millie Gooch | April 2024 | 6 minutes

Millie Gooch brings another set of brilliant weekly mid-week instalments to help you explore the sober lifestyle to the max. This week, Millie’s giving you her best advice around how to have conversations with your loved ones about your decision to have a break from drinking.

Having conversations with your loved ones around drinking can be difficult. There’s the fear of coming across ‘preachy’, the worry of how they might react and the uncertainty of what to do if their reactions are less than savoury. Hopefully these tips might help!

1. Ask them for their support

Asking for support can empower and encourage your loved ones to be part of your journey. Not only does it make the conversation a two-way street where their participation is valued but it tells them exactly what you need from them to make this Sober Spring successful. It helps if you can express those needs clearly and be honest about what sort of support you actually need. Whether that’s emotional assistance or maybe even physically attending some events with you.

2. Educate them gently

Some people may not understand why someone would choose to take a break from alcohol. If needed, gently educate them about the reasons behind such decisions and the benefits you think it will bring you. The more honest you are about why you’re doing this the better. It might make you feel a bit vulnerable and exposed but the more you’re able to give them, the more they’ll be able to help and understand.

3. Prepare and thank

Not everyone will understand or support your decision right away so prepare yourself for a range of reactions and remember that it’s okay if they need time to adjust to the news. In my experience, when people see how much it’s benefitting you, they often come round in the end. If they aren’t best pleased, you can start by reassuring your loved ones that your decision is about you and not them, emphasising that your relationship is important and that you value their support and understanding during this challenge. If they champion you from the get-go then definitely acknowledge their willingness to listen and thank them for being the best. Expressing gratitude can strengthen your relationship and reinforce their role in your sober support system!

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