I don’t drink. A statement which is greeted by surprise and questions. When you don’t drink people think it’s weird. But why?
According to a study done in 2017, a quarter of 16-24 year olds in the UK don’t drink so it’s not exactly rare. But it’s always assumed that you drink, it’s never a question that you might not but when you mention you don’t, that’s when you have to provide answers.
People always have opinions about you not drinking. They will ask why, they will call you boring, they will tell you to order something stronger when you ask for an orange juice.
I don’t comment on your drinking habits so please don’t comment on mine.
I am perfectly happy with the fact I don’t drink but I often find myself being very self-conscious when ordering in bars or discussing alcohol. I want to ask the bartender if they can make a non-alcoholic version of the mojito on their menu.
I want to order a simple lemonade but I know the second I do, the questions and comments will roll in.
Personally, I don’t drink out of choice. I’ve been there, done that, bought several t-shirts but it’s just no longer something I want to do.
There’s no big reason why I don’t, I just stopped. I don’t like the taste of alcohol, I don’t like getting past the point of tipsy, I don’t like being out of control and I don’t like hangovers.
I do like driving, I do like remembering the night, I do like sipping a drink I actually like the taste of and I do like knowing exactly where I am or what I’m doing.
That’s my personal reason but people don’t drink for so many other reasons and you don’t know their reasons.
How would you feel if you told someone to order a stronger drink only to find out they are a recovering alcoholic?
People don’t drink for religious reasons, health reasons, overcoming addiction, pregnancy… the list is endless.
If you drink, that’s fine, enjoy it but don’t judge someone who doesn’t. You don’t know the reasons behind it, they have no need to explain themselves to you and it doesn’t effect you in any way whatsoever.
The drinking culture is so huge that people forget that it’s not to everyone’s taste and doesn’t fit in everyone’s lives. You don’t necessarily need alcohol to socialise. You don’t necessarily need alcohol to have a good time.
So, if you come across someone who doesn’t drink, please just respect that. Don’t comment, don’t question, just leave it be.
If drinking is not for you, just don’t do it. Don’t feel any pressure at all. You do you.
IF YOU FEEL PRESSURED INTO DRINKING ALOCHOL WHEN YOU DON’T WANT TO THEN YOU CAN SEEK ADVICE AT DRINKAWARE.CO.UK