Sober and curious: find your alcohol-free tribe

Kristin | October 2023 | 7 minutes

When Kristin gave up alcohol with her partner Callum in June of last year, she did not realise how powerful this decision would be. A year on, Kristin has created her own sober community.

I gave up drinking alcohol in June 2022, along with my partner Callum. The day after we decided, we poured out all the bottles in our house (which was a lot!), removed all alcohol related items (it’s surprising what you collect!) and cancelled all our nights out for the next month. It may sound extreme; however, it was what we felt like we needed to do. I’m not going to lie, we did very little socially for the first month of our sobriety!

Fast forward a few months and I felt like I needed to connect with like-minded people to keep me on track.

Friends and family were supportive, however I didn’t want them to get sick of me talking about not drinking alcohol, so I started to research some groups and events. The first three organisations I came across were Club Soda, Sober Girl Society and Dryy – all of which I signed up for. They are all great groups, based in England with various meet ups and events, but not a lot happening in Scotland where I am. So, on the 31 December 2022, I created my Facebook Group called “Sober AND Curious Community, SCOTLAND” and invited my only sober friend! Since then, we have grown to a collection of almost 500 people with a great sense of community.

My background is in the events industry, which I left during COVID to start my own business (an online sweet shop and corporate gifting company – random I know!), so it felt natural to start organising events for the group I had created and I knew that the first would have to be focused around the amazing alcohol free drinks producers that we have here in Scotland! The event took place at the Radisson Blu Hotel in Edinburgh on the 5th February and we had a sell out at 25 guests, along with 4 amazing companies who told us a bit about their story and let us try their drinks; Sonja from Jump Ship Brewing, Kerr from Spirit of Virtue, Kirstie from Sea Buckthorn Scotland and Norma from Edinburgh Kombucha. Our guests even got a little goody bag with another 3 x alcohol- free drinks to enjoy at home.

The first event was so successful, that I decided the second event would also be a tasting, however with a slightly different format.

I wanted people attending to be able to chat to each other, hear each other’s stories and create new friendships whilst also trying the drinks – so this is exactly what I did.

The event took place on the 25 March at Yotel Edinburgh, and I was lucky enough to be supported by a lot of companies (Days, Brulo, Talonmore, Feragaia, Wild Eve – all Scottish Companies, along with Bemuse, Real Drinks Co, Nirvana Brewery, The Wise Bartender and The Alcohol Free Drinks Company).

Future events include Axe Throwing, Chocolate Making, Sushi Class, Wreath Making along with smaller social get togethers for coffee (and cake!) and walks. I’m hoping also to follow the lead from Alcohol Change UK’s CEO, Richard, and do an alcohol-free pub crawl in my hometown to check out what alcohol free drinks are on offer!

I would love for anyone to join the Facebook group and also on Instagram @soberandcurious.