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how to have fun on the fourth of july without drinking

Besides New Year’s, St. Patrick’s Day, and the Super Bowl, I would hazard a guess that July 4th is one of the drunkest occasions in American culture. Fourth of July celebrations are synonymous with summertime, barbeques, picnics, and beer. With all of the festivities and libations flowing, how do you stay sober? Just because you lead a sober life doesn’t mean that you can’t enjoy the food, fun, and camaraderie.

Here are some ideas and tips to keeping your sobriety intact while managing to have an awesome time:

  • Attend sober barbeques/parties
  • Attend festivities with sober supports, such as sober friends and/or your sponsor for accountability and support
  • Remember that you don’t have to attend every party that you’ve been invited to
  • Attend a 12 Step meeting that morning or during the day or that evening
  • Check your motives, make sure you are in a spiritually fit place, get input from people whom you trust, such as your sponsor
  • Do something different, start your own Fourth of July tradition: go bowling, to the movies, deep-sea fishing, the amusement park, museums, art shows
  • Throw a Fourth of July party at your place and make it known to your guests that it’s a BYON-AB Party (Bring Your Own Non-Alcoholic Beverage)
  • Do volunteer work: help out at your local pet shelter, homeless shelter, nursing home, or hospital

How I am going to stay sober on the Fourth of July

The Fourth of July the year will be my first one in sobriety. I get to start out my day like any other: I am going to work. But, I get to leave early and that’s when the party planning begins! I’m helping a fellow recovering alcoholic throw an outrageous Fourth of July bash at his house. We have lots of mutual friends, many of whom are in recovery and many who are not alcoholics or addicts. They respect our sobriety and choose to come party with us.

We decided to make it a theme party, haven’t quite decided yet but, I’m thinking favorite TV sitcom character. I mean, what better way to celebrate the Fourth of July and Americana than by paying homage to famous (or obscure) television personalities?!

Another way in which we are celebrating July Fourth and the freedom our country affords us is by requesting our guests to bring their favorite ethnic dish or family recipe. That way, we get to have all different types of delicious foods, the work-load of cooking and food preparation is shared amongst many rather than amongst only a few, and we get to celebrate the many cultures that make up our friends and the country, as a whole.

How will you stay sober on the Fourth of July?

Whatever you decide to do to stay sober on the Fourth of July this year, remember that you and your sobriety come first. Choose the best party or activity for yourself that is in line with who you are now, now that you are living a clean and sober life. That doesn’t mean that you can’t have fun. Remember to check your motives when deciding what party you will attend or what activities in which you will participate. Discuss your plan with your sponsor. Be safe. Be smart. And, for goodness sake…Have Fun! You deserve it.

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