Staying Sober During The Fourth of July is Not Impossible
Published 10:51 am Monday, June 26, 2023
Written by Micheal Leach (Certified Clinical Medical Assistant)
The Fourth of July is an incredibly festive time. Millions of American families come together to celebrate
freedom. Across the state are parades, concerts, BBQs, family gatherings, and fireworks. It’s the
ultimate family weekend.
July 4 th is also America’s top beer-drinking holiday. An estimated one billion dollars is spent nationally.
Unfortunately, excessive drinking has its pitfalls. In Georgia, 15% of adults over 18 binge drink at least
once per month.
July Fourth celebrations can be challenging for someone in recovery from alcoholism or drug addiction
or anyone choosing sobriety. Fortunately, there are practical ways to help you stay sober and enjoy the
“It is typically the environments where binge drinking or recreational drug use is encouraged that can
easily lead a person to relapse,” said Marcel Gemme of Addicted.org.
Consider some of the following tips to stay sober during the Fourth of July and enjoy the holiday with
friends and family:
Know and identify relapse triggers. This could be people, environments, particular situations, or
environments. Knowing these triggers makes it much easier to avoid or manage them. Having a healthy
outlet to manage negative emotions or feelings attached to these triggers is also critical.
Bring sober friends to July Fourth celebrations or attend sober festivities. Bringing non-alcoholic drinks
or mocktails to July 4th parties is also a good idea. This can help avoid those pesky relatives who always
insist you have a drink in your hand.
Avoid environments that promote binge drinking and drinking games. While this seems like common
sense, getting caught up in the moment is easy.
Practice saying no; it’s ok to turn down party invitations. An exit plan is also essential if things become
too much to manage. Set yourself up in a way where if you have to leave, you can do it easily.
Independence Day is about celebrating freedom. Countless people have freed themselves from the
chains of addiction. Take this holiday as an opportunity to create new memories and traditions. Spend
quality time with family and friends.
Being sober does not mean you stop having fun. It’s a second chance at life and new opportunities,
something to celebrate this Independence Day.
Michael Leach has spent most of his career as a healthcare professional specializing in Substance Use
Disorder and addiction recovery. He is a Certified Clinical Medical Assistant and contributor to the
healthcare website Recovery Begins.