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3 Ways to Enjoy a Sober Thanksgiving

Victory Bay Recovery Center

Thanksgiving Day is filled with many traditions. The kids come home from college, the house smells of wonderful home-cooked meals, and the family gets together to celebrate. Quite often, Thanksgiving also involves alcohol and, sometimes, drugs. But what if you want to have a sober Thanksgiving?

For some in recovery, that can be a real challenge. Alcohol is plentiful and nearby. Festive family and friends encourage you to take a little sip. For many, having a sober Thanksgiving, free of substance abuse, is a real challenge.

Take the time to think through how to keep yourself on the right path. Through planning and good communication, a sober Thanksgiving is within your grasp and Victory Bay Recovery Center can help.

3 Ways to Have a Sober Thanksgiving

It’s perfectly normal to feel apprehension about attending the yearly family gathering. Sometimes the variables are not always in your control, and it can trip up your recovery.

Here are three ways of dealing with the pressure to secure a sober Thanksgiving:

Prepare what you will say ahead of time

You know that someone is likely to press you to have a drink or even use drugs. Rehearse ahead of time what you will say to alleviate the awkwardness.

Bring non-alcoholic beverages

This way, you’re not putting the pressure on the host, and you also have a go-to when it’s time for a refill. Pull it from your cooler.

Strategically plan your arrival — and departure

Don’t go too early. But also, don’t stay too late.

The work to ensure a sober Thanksgiving will be worth it on your road to recovery.

Other Things to Do on Thanksgiving

You might have to go off on your own to stay with your goals for sobriety. Planning your event puts you back in control of your destiny.

Here are some ideas:

Get out of town

Take a vacation, either by yourself or with your spouse or children. This can help separate you from the influences that challenge your recovery.


Help at a homeless shelter or a church. There’s no better way to change your focus than to help others less fortunate than you.

Plan your gathering

Nothing says that Thanksgiving has to be about intoxicating substances. Have the party at your house, with your immediate family, and make it alcohol-free.

Sobriety is a hard-earned challenge. Getting through the holidays with a sober Thanksgiving is something that you can achieve.

Putting Sobriety First Always

People in recovery want to have a sober Thanksgiving. But they also want sobriety the entire year. Part of what you learn in therapy and aftercare is about the lifestyle changes you may need to make for that to happen.

For example, you may have to adjust your base of friends. Those who you enjoyed spending time with may represent bad influences. Perhaps they’re insensitive to your choice of sobriety. Or, maybe they remind you of places and events that trigger the “old” way of thinking.

You also should plan for making different choices to keep you healthy. You may want to take up a hobby, such as enjoying the outdoors, painting, or learning to play music. Get some exercise. Eat right.

Whatever it is, these lifestyle choices can help you have a sober Thanksgiving, free of substance abuse.

Help for Addiction at Victory Bay Recovery Center

The holidays are pressure-packed. If you are in recovery, the pressure to drink alcoholic beverages or use drugs may be among your stressors. If you feel challenged to maintain a sober Thanksgiving, use the coping tools you’ve learned — ones that are also taught at Victory Bay Recovery Center.

Based in New Jersey, Victory Bay Recovery Center is an outpatient drug treatment center that provides help for substance abuse and co-occurring disorders. Our clinical staff provides caring, confidential, safe, and private addiction treatment care.

We are guided by evidence-based care every step of the way. We also treat the whole patient, not just the disorder of substance abuse, by providing support for family issues and sober living. A whole new world is out there for you.

Contact Victory Bay Recovery Center at 855.239.5099 to speak to a counselor and set up an initial consultation.

Recovery with Victory Bay

At Victory Bay we’re here to help you achieve a new life with a new start in recovery. To learn more about the variety of treatment programs we offer, including mental health, eating disorders, and substance use, contact us today by calling 855.239.5099.