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How to Stay Away From Drugs and Alcohol During Gatherings

You may be recently sober or have been sober for a while now. Unfortunately, it’s taken a lot for you to get to this point and refrain from using drugs and alcohol. Finally, you’re ready to attend more gatherings, but you may still be on the fence about it. 

There are things to consider to ensure you’re ready to go to get-togethers without regressing. But, of course, you can still attend parties if you’re ready, and thankfully, there are tips that can help.

Yes, it is possible to enjoy gatherings still and retain your sobriety simultaneously! 


1. Bring a Sober Buddy

If you have a sober friend who’d be willing to go with you, ask the hosts whether you can bring a plus one. With a friend who is also trying to stay sober, you can keep one another accountable. 

Having a friend who doesn’t have problems with alcohol or drugs can also go with you. But, you may need to find out if they’re alright with not drinking around you to eliminate temptation. 

The hosts don’t have to know that you’re a recovering alcoholic if you don’t want them to. But having your friend there to keep an eye on you can help you enjoy the event. 

2. Tell Your Sponsor Ahead of Time 

If you have a sponsor, letting them know you’re attending an event with drugs and alcohol would be wise. They can make a mental note of it and check in with you after the party. 

If you’ve recently left a recovery center, a sponsor may recommend you don’t attend certain events. That’s why communicating with them is vital to your sobriety. 

When they let you know their thoughts, be open to what they have to say. You may be defensive and feel ready to go to all gatherings. But based on where you’re at in your recovery, you may not be prepared.

3. Let Your Friends Know You’re Not Drinking 

If your friends are at the events, be candid with them and let them know you’re trying to remain sober. If it’s a small group of friends, they may forgo drinking to encourage you to make good decisions. 

You may also be planning to go out with friends in the future. By understanding where you’re at in your sober journey, they can respect your boundaries. 

If you have friends who ever pressure you to use drugs or alcohol, they’re not good friends. It’s in your best interest to surround yourself with people who will keep you accountable.

4. Don’t Attend Certain Get-Togethers

There may be particular get-togethers that are more triggering than others. For example, a person you used to party with may be at an event. If you have a hard time saying no to them, you shouldn’t put yourself in that situation.

Another reason not to attend certain events is if many people drink alcohol and don’t plan on stopping. When people around you get intoxicated, it’s easier for you to drink without anyone noticing. Being at a gathering like this can set you back on your progress if you’re not careful. 

So, use your best judgment when deciding which events to attend. If you feel you may be tempted and undo what you’ve worked hard to achieve, don’t go. 

5. Find Something Else to Snack On

Perhaps you don’t want to miss an event, and you’ve found that having something to snack on helps distract you.

If you don’t think a specific gathering will have your favorite non-alcoholic beverage or snack, bring it with you! There’s no shame in bringing along a dessert, snack, or soda. The hosts will be thankful you took the time to bring something to snack on. 

During the gathering, focus on the snacks you have. They’re an excellent distraction from the other things you may be missing out on, such as alcohol. 


As a recovering alcoholic or drug addict, staying away from temptation may not always be easy. You may always struggle with addiction, but that doesn’t mean you should give up easily. There are many forms of treatments that can help you along the way. For example, Hollywood Hills Recovery offers a variety of treatments for recovering alcoholics and drug addicts. 

There are ways to still get together with friends and enjoy social events. Make a plan of action ahead of time, and you should be able to enjoy future gatherings to the fullest.

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