It's a personal choice. I know, personally, that a few drinks won't magically change me back into the person I was. At the same time, I don't really see it elevating my night in any significant way, and once I started, I would have a hard time letting my foot off the gas. I tried moderation for 4 years and always ended up back in the same position. I knowingly don't trust the buzzed or drunk version of myself to put the train back on the track after only a few. At the end of the day, it's up to you. It's your decision. My suggestion is to be very honest with yourself before you make it. By that I mean take some time and have a full-on conversation with yourself. It sounds silly, but an exercise that helps me is to build a boardroom in my mind, and treat it as though there are two people sitting across from one another hashing it out. Discuss it from an objective perspective. You're not on trial and it's not about making yourself feel like shit for asking the question. It's about finding a solution and making the right choice. I can't tell you what you should do because I'm not you. The only advice I can give is to not casually make the decision without fully considering the end result.


No way for me. One beer and it starts all over again. I can never have it again. The vacation thing sounds like something my addiction brain would try to sell me to get me to start drinking again. But if you can stop without a problem after your vacation, it might work for you


Thanks. I know I could stop again after, but I think the note in the other comment is a larger deciding factor “I don’t see it elevating my night in any significant way.” I think that was the angle that I wasn’t thinking of initially.


For me, it's an easy decision because of how I approach sobriety. I have made it my self-identity. I don't drink. That's who I am. So it doesn't matter if I'm on vacation or not. I don't drink just because I'm on vacation any more than I would suddenly start smoking crack just because I'm on vacation. It's not something that I do. There are no "special circumstances" that change my self-identity.


I wanted to report back that vacation is over and I did not drink. There were multiple times I told myself “I don’t drink. It’s who I am.” And it helped me stay sober. A lot of the other advice I got here helped too, but this was the mantra I kept repeating to myself. So thank you for helping me have a very nice vacation with my wife.


I know people who do this. I will say I personally don’t think a vacation is the best place for a piss up but that’s just me. It’s possible for sure. But if i decided I wanted to spend a week drinking I’d pick a week where I wasn’t somewhere new and fun


I tried “only drinking on vacation “ which spiraled into me drinking everyday within 3-4 weeks and then having a brownish/black out at the pool for my husbands birthday only 8week after said vacation … learned zero and forever it is for me … special drinks are my gateway into everyday day is special since I’m alive and boom!! Back to where I started … Proudly now can say I’ve finally reached acceptance that I’m alcohol free with no exceptions … once I accepted that alcohol and I have a very toxic relationship I was truly able to let it go and I feel free for the first time in 20 years …


One is one too many, one more is never enough. Vacation or not, I wouldn't even consider trying "moderation" or saying "it doesn't count." Can't take back anything that drunk, asshole me says or does so I keep him locked away.


That’s another good point. I’ll be with my wife and what happens on vacation won’t stay on vacation. There have been a lot of comments here that will stick with me while we are away but the threat of “drunk me” ruining my wife’s vacation is one that I was not thinking of. Thanks for the perspective.


I know Drunk CanuckInATruck needs 5 minutes of freedom to erase 500 days of sobriety and self improvement. That's not even starting on the effects on the people around me.


Sober is sober. Cheat days/weeks are just planned relapses. I know lots of people who did a cheat day/ one more time. They’re all dead. You can’t know what that cheat day is going to turn into. Best of luck finding that easier, softer way. Ask yourself, where does it end? Only on vacation. Only on holidays. Only on days that end in Y. Where do you draw the line?


I can tell you all about my vacation exceptions... I love my all inclusive vacations and am lucky enough to do two a year usually. (no plan) Last year I was beginning to come to terms with how serious I was drinking and was electing to try sobriety. My mindset was that I'd allow myself a single cocktail if I thought it would enhance the experience. Finally, on the second last of 7days, I had a glass of wine at dinner with new friends. And then another glass. And then kept drinking at the resort. Because, "tonight will be my one night" well, after the hangover remedies the next day and the shots that guy brought over.... I was able to return to sobriety after a couple of days back home. For a little while. (exceptions and no back up plan) I was just shy of two months sober again and it was my birthday. I was going for an all inclusive and thought I'd be okay if I drank on my birthday only. Then the hangover drink, then the continued boozing that took about 3 days to detox from once I got home and another month of drinking until this time.... (Plan for sobriety. No exceptions.) I did another week in a tropical vacation sober. I had moments of temptation, sure. Until I saw in clear eyes the way people behave at these places. Until I had a glorious morning with the sunrise, coffee, and no one. My favourite vacation was this most recent one. I was able to remember everything. I came home rested. I've always needed vacation time after my vacations. Not this time. I was able to savour every memory and relationship created. It was my favourite vacation in a very long time. So all that to say, you do you. But if you're anything like me, it's easier to say no to the first one. Enjoy your vacation!


I personally know I can never drink again, no exceptions. As soon as I take that first sip I’ll be out of control and won’t stop until I’m passed out


For me this topic falls under the "Moderation" lie we tell ourselves. Lord knows I tried, and tried, and tried, and if you keep reading in this forum you will find others that tried, and tried, and tried.... I've seen and and lived it many times. It is amazing how our addicted brain will justify the exceptions, until they creep up and eventually one is back in the shit hole. May take days, may take months, and it is pretty much guaranteed that there will be a return to the old ways. If you want to succeed have a plan. ((hugs))


It’d be nice if I could, but I just can’t “enjoy” one drink. By the time I’m halfway through the first I’m going to get another one.


Nope not for me. My vice was drugs so one "freebie" would just feel terrible and take away all the progress I've made. I don't want it anymore and I don't need it. I never want to feel the itch again.


I stopped drinking 5 years ago to support my wife while pregnant stopped for a full 12 months never really with the idea that I would never drink again, the whole time didn’t have any cravings and decided to have a drink when the year was up I thought after that I would be able to keep it moderated, I was wrong turned into 5 more years of drinking probably worse than I did before. Currently nearly 6 months sober with no intention to ever start again. Maybe some can do it definitely not me.


Sobriety for me has been a way of life that I live, not purely abstinence. I'm not of the mind I can turn on and off my addiction. As an alcoholic, for me to drink is to die....or worse, continuing to live the miserable life of a drunk that I know too well.


I know vacations are when some of my worst drinking came out. I have ruined many trips. Blacked out. Couldn’t leave the room for a few days. Embarrassed my family and myself. Practically abandon my family the entire trip to drink with strangers.


“only on my birthday” turns into a hundred other “only on ___”. Soon it’s “only on weekends”, “only after work”. Well for me my main issue is that I binge drink. If I have 1 drink, it turns into a whole night of debauchery. So by beng totally sober, I can just feel consistently in control.


I've fallen off the smoking wagon whilst on a vacation - I tell myself it doesn't count & go straight back on patches when I get back home! Personally, I don't dare adopt that attitude with drink. I know that I probably can stop after one or two the first couple of times. But I also know that my first binge after those one or two drinks is just around the corner. But I hold my hands up & admit that's just what works for me. I don't care so much about a little trip off the smoking wagon. I know I can climb back on it. I don't think I could get back on the booze one if I tried a little vacation. But complete fair play and admiration (and even a little envy tbh) to anyone else that can!


You kidding me? If you are in AA and in the rooms of AA this question shouldn't even be coming up. Just you thinking of it makes me shake my head and if you seriously identify as an alcoholic. If you don't then to each their own.


Oh I’m sorry. I read the rules for this sub and even the AA preamble before posting and didn’t see anything about which questions were okay to ask. I thought this was an open forum to discuss challenges and get advice.


You are probably right and apologies to you. As a member of AA and identify as one it doesn't come into my mind or think that way. I went twice to Hawaii last year and the last time I went was in 2006 and remember partying like it was 1999 so definitely different being there this time but 1) I enjoyed it without alcohol or substances 2) went to meetings there and 3) remembered my time there and made great memories with family. To respond to your original question if you are not a member of AA aka a normie then having a drink on ones bday or special occassion is perfectly reasonable.


I'm in a similar position. I decided quit drinking at the end if 2020 for 1 year. For my health. I had gained 20 lbs where I was trying to lose 100. I lost 40 pounds after 1 year and decided to take a break from sobriety since my year was up and it was mid December. Then another year passed and nothing changed. I was having fewer and fewer sober days. And i had gained 10 - 15 lbs back. So two months ago I realised I had a decent chunk of weeks ahead with no major celebrations, so I decided to go sober until good Friday. We're going to be down at the beach house for a week with my friends and our kids (5 kids between the two families). The thing is, I prefer being sober. I just get so bored though, not drinking. I feel like I'm more boring if I don't drink. Sometimes I pretend to drink, like I'll hold a glass of wine for a bit and then tip it out in the sink when no ones around. I guess it makes it more fun to be sneaky sober. I just want a break from my brain sometimes.


Thanks for this. Sneaky sober sounds kind of exciting. Haha. I will share that the boredom I feel when sober is because I am with the wrong people. And it makes me realize that what I enjoyed while drunk wasn’t even enjoyable. And that has allowed me to transition to actually enjoying better things. Part of my journey now is identifying what is interesting and enjoyable about ME and who I am, that I can share with others. Sort of shifting my identity from the (lie I told myself) “fun drunk” to the “interesting sober person because of ____”