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What can I do to help my friend not to fall back when we go clubbing, to concerts or festivals?

Discussion in 'Helping an Addicted Friend' started by Friele, Nov 20, 2014.

  1. Friele

    Friele Member

    What are the things I can do , say and how do I act around my friend in these circumstances to help ?
    So many people say you should never get yourself in a setting where you can be tempted again, but being a young person( at heart and spirit at least) not going out dancing, or to a concert hamper life in a very negative way for most.
    So how do you help out and stay a positive force for your friend in those places?

    We are planning on going to Burning Man next year, and have already been in contact with a few other ex-addicts who have attended a few times and are told it is not a problem, what do you think? Are there any great festivals out there with a section for us non-drinkers and substance users to have fun and hang out?
  2. gmckee1985

    gmckee1985 Senior Contributor

    You're just going to have to stay on them. Have to remind them how far they have come and what they can possibly lose if they "fall off the wagon", so to speak. I think the best idea is just to avoid places where there are a lot of drugs and alcohol. Of course, you can't avoid it completely if you want to live a full life. But putting them into those type of situations repeatedly is irresponsible. You need to make sure they are strong enough mentally to overcome it.
  3. Friele

    Friele Member

    I was looking for some advise, and to hear from others about how they do it.
    To have a few strategies , the " don't go there" is not what I am asking about. We go to dance and hear music, not to drink or do drugs, and in many of those places the opportunity to do both are in various degrees.

    And to the point, I was asking if there are someone who have been or heard of places where the "sober" gather during concerts, festivals and dance places. That would be very helpful, there are a number of people who does not drink just because they don't like it or never started, so there must be more people out there , but where are they?
  4. Teresa

    Teresa Senior Contributor

    I have not ever been in this situation myself but my cousin has been and I think first of all the person has to already have the mind set that they are going to the club, concert or whatever the gathering is..for the purpose of having fun and socializing and that alcohol/drugs is not a part of or detrimental to the intent of going to such a gathering. So back to my cousin, he still went out to clubs with his girlfriend and friends but with the mindset that he wasn't going to drink because it would be a set back for him and also made himself the "designated driver" if the event one might be needed, he drank a lot of soda and chewed on the ice that was in the cup after drinking the soda. Going out and having fun has to be disassociated in your mind , with drinking and I think the capability to do that will vary with each individuale.
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2014
  5. pintbean

    pintbean Active Contributor

    I think that in this case you have to be very high energy with everyone staying active (i.e. dancing) in a situation like this. Maybe make sure to go out of your way to keep everyone hyped to be there without any outside influence. I like Terea's idea of having soft drinks and playing with the ice, because then you are distracted.

    I wish you the best in this situation!
  6. musicmonster

    musicmonster Senior Contributor

    Believe it or not, there are clean festivals out there, but you just really have to be keen on doing the research. Stay away from forest parties as much possible. And most of the time, it's really about the people you hang out with. Make sure that you and your friends are with the right crowd. But the safest way to party would just be inside your house or backyard with all your friends talking about anything under the sun. After all, that should be parties are about. It is hard to party and catch up anyway with super loud music and most especially when everyday is high or drunk. I hope this helps.
  7. Fern

    Fern Active Contributor

    Designated driver, as someone mentioned above is good. At some clubs local to me that have a cover charge, they have two types of wristbands, the drinkers and the designated driver. The person in a group of 3 or more who is designated driver gets free entrance fee and free soft drinks. A place like that and the DD band is very useful for someone in recovery.

    I don't know about burning man because I haven't been there but some festivals like Ren Faires and concerts, you have to show ID and get an over 21 band at the gate or you can't buy alcohol. None of the vendors are allowed to accept ID for fraud protection. They won't serve without the band and the cups for alcohol look different. Security will call you on it if you have that cup and no band. That is a great place for someone in recovery because a) there's lots of fun stuff to do and see without drinking and b) if they don't go the whole way back to the front gate for band, they can't drink. That gives them time to think and prevents impulse purchases.

    I think, overall, giving them time to think and preventing impulse driven decisions is the key. Perhaps at burning man, there could be an agreement to stay together and take a time out if the urge to drink hits. Since staying hydrated is a major concern in the desert, pushing them to drink more water and sports drinks might help. When your tummy is sloshy with too much other drinks to the point where you don't want to drink more, it's easier to pass on drinking ANYTHING even when it's calling to you.
  8. NikkiDesrosiers

    NikkiDesrosiers Senior Contributor

    Honestly, if these environments are a trigger for her addiction than you should be helping her to avoid this environments - find other things to do together other than attend these events in order to help her avoid wanting to feed her addiction.
  9. Jil Diamante

    Jil Diamante Member

    I think more than anything else, what you can give him/her is moral support and advice on how to move forward and the possibility of creating that positive change in his/her life by staying sane and responsible in every actions of his/her life. You can always still have fun without being stupid and reckless.
  10. hellonamesdana

    hellonamesdana Senior Contributor

    Although it's going to be tough, I think there are tons of ways where you can still have a good time at a club or a concert, something like that, without the drugs and alcohol. I swear, it's a possible thing to have fun sober in these places, because I've done it. I do it all of the time. I think that if you don't leave her alone, and you both vow not to drink or do any sort of drugs, you'll have a great time. Don't be directly near people who are going too over the top with the substances. It can happen.
  11. Mackmax

    Mackmax Active Contributor

    I think a good idea is to first get her to have fun in a non-alcoholic environment. Take her to the beach, or to a museum, where drinking isn't allowed. That way, she knows she can have plenty of fun without drinking, and doesn't feel the need to drink at the club. You should also avoid drinking at this club so that she doesn't feel left out or alone.
  12. hellonamesdana

    hellonamesdana Senior Contributor

    Yes, I think the biggest thing is that if they're not going to be drinking and you're the one taking them to this sort of event or whatever it is, you shouldn't drink either. It would really make someone uncomfortable and they wouldn't be having fun if you're drinking and they can't, or they could easily wander off and end up drinking as well!
  13. RoseK

    RoseK Active Contributor

    I think by having an open dialogue with your friend about their particular triggers can build trust when/if they attend these places with you. Make sure they know that they can vocalize when they feel the urges and have plans in place to deal with the triggers in a healthy way.
  14. cmleasure

    cmleasure Active Contributor

    I would start by hanging out with your friend in settings where drinking/drugs is not even a thing. Finding other hobbies outside of a drunk/drug setting. Then go with your friend to a concert and show them that they can have a good time at a show without getting messed up. The trick to taking your friend to burning man is weening them back into the scene without the alcohol and/or drugs before the event. Find other friends who are going to be sober, use them as support. It is very tempting and can take a really long time before any temptations are easily passed up.
  15. kylerlittle

    kylerlittle Community Champion

    I think it's important to protect them from the environment they would be exposed to. That means, if anything causes them to stumble or be tempted, get out of there immediately. A man who is suicidal shouldn't be exposed to a building in which he can jump off of (metaphorical). I think if any place you take them to, any friends you let them speak to or the environments surrounding him causes him to stumble, don't take them there. That's like taking a man wishing to die to his own death.
  16. zaerine

    zaerine Community Champion

    You really need to have a self control when going to those parties. That way you can serve as a model and could also convince others that it is possible to say No on those occasions or events. Keep in mind that you are there for the event and not for the substances.
  17. kylerlittle

    kylerlittle Community Champion

    Oh absolutely. I think I'm one of those with self control and I don't wanna brag or be proud of it, lest I actually lose it. I will say that it is possible to create self control even if you don't have it. It takes discipline in a lot of areas in your life though.
  18. kjonesm1

    kjonesm1 Community Champion

    I think that constantly hounding somebody can have the opposite effect. It sounds great in theory, but reminding an addict all night of how bad drugs and alcohol are is going to ruin the fun for both of you.

    That being said, there is absolutely nothing you can do. If a person wants to use, they will use. Try to have a good time with your friend and under no circumstance should you drink or use while your with them. Enjoy burning man!
  19. zaerine

    zaerine Community Champion

    Yes. One should set clear rules and limitations for himself to be able to also be a role model for others. It is really possible to be in control even on those places. Even there are lots of temptations around you.
  20. kylerlittle

    kylerlittle Community Champion

    I know I grew up in a really bad school that was full of temptations and just utter disgust. I think I was the only one considered a "nerd" because I wouldn't indulge or engage in what they would do. I was very happy, but not all people have self control as much as I do, I think one needs to be careful what environments he or she brings himself/herself to be in.