Navigating Social Drinking in the Summertime


Summer holidays are progressing steadily, the season of great expectations is coming to a close. Family and friends are trying to squeeze as much get togethers in the last few weeks as they can, the BBQ is ready, and the fridge is well supplied with food and drinks. The warm weather, the family gathering, the sporting events are all an opportunity to celebrate with food and drinks.

For the average drinkers, the people who can limit their drinking to a maximum of 10 to 14 drinks per week, this time of the year may not pose a problem. But for those individuals who are either a recovered alcoholic or are trying to moderate their drinking, summertime can be a real source of temptation and a serious challenge. For them, this is the appropriate time to reconnect with a therapist or attend a support group. Often people think they can manage to control their drinking alone or stay sober, and put themselves in risky situations. Family and friends can be supportive, but can also be a source of stress and disagreement. People drink when in a happy mood, but are also triggered by negative feelings, including anger, boredom, shyness and tension.

Here are some suggestions on how to keep the summer sober and safe:

  • Be honest about your drinking problem and get the support from family or friends
  • Spend time with friends in activities that do not involve drinking
  • Set a time limit in attending a gathering involving drinking
  • If you own a boat, don’t drink if you are planning to drive, the law and the penalties are the same as if you were driving a car and had been drinking
  • Bring your favorite non-alcoholic drinks when invited to a party
  • Be prepared that some people will push you into drinking
  • Be prepared to say no with an answer like: “I am the designated driver “
    or “I’m on medication today”



So give yourself a checkup, and practice self-care. Reach out for support, resources, or call a therapist who knows how to deal with addiction. Capital Choice Counselling Group has specialists in addictions and they are just a phone call away. To schedule an appointment or to learn more about ways to stick to your goal of abstinence or moderation contact Capital Choice Counselling Group at 613-425-4257.

Written By: Clara Panarella
Associate Counsellor with Capital Choice Counselling