Sober Super Bowl Sunday

Dr. Norris Von Curl, II, MD

Dr. Norris Von Curl, II, MD

It’s finally here. The national celebration we wait for with more expectation than most major holidays combined. It’s the biggest day in football. Obviously though, it’s more than the game and the parties and the long-last-minute lines in the grocery store. There are a few things synonymous with Super Bowl Sunday that have simply become part of the culture: commercials, being with friends, half-time shows, buffalo wings … oh and booze. So yes. For recovering addicts, this day can present a few challenges. But it is definitely doable. Sobriety does not mean losing out on life, but it does mean that it is wise to take a page from the Boy Scouts and Be Prepared. So here are some tips to make sure you can both enjoy the game and keep yourself strong in your sobriety. The good news is, this year you are actually going to remember who won!

  1. Choose your setting wisely.

Sports and alcohol are intimately connected. The messages you get both overtly and subconsciously are nearly constant. So let’s start off by saying, if you are brand new to sobriety, you have the right to simply avoid the parties this year. Many times this is the best choice, especially when you are building a new life and breaking old habits that could lead to a return to substance abuse. That said, you can also host an alcohol-free get-together at your own house where others recovering from alcohol and other substances can come and feel safe. Remember, even many football stadiums have alcohol-free sections. This is part of what is referred to a creating new fun or starting new traditions.

*Regarding commercials – If you have free reign, or if you are hosting a sober party, change the channel when the beer commercials come on. If you are not at a sober party, just get up and go to the kitchen for guacamole. Whatever you need to do, be aware of the stimuli surrounding the marketing of football and ready to protect yourself.

  1. Keep your guard up.

It is a temptation for a recovering addict to want to feel “normal” and just jump right back into regular life. This is a mistake for a person addicted to alcohol, especially early in recovery. Your addiction is chronic, and it is life-threatening, and it is anything but normal—it requires total abstinence and day-by-day attention to your commitment to choose life. You can have fun but keep your guard up. This day is an important one to have people around you who support you—throughout the day, keep in mind your commitment to sobriety and what it means to you, your family, and your friends. Even better, meet with your support before the game. Together you can discuss your concerns and offer advice on how to handle matters. Plus, you can be ready to reconnect if needed throughout the day.

  1. Watch the game.

This year you get to remember not just who won, but the entire game. Get involved. Keep your mind connected. Root for your team. If you don’t care for football, then choose another way to enjoy yourself: help out with the food, watch the kids, create a trivia game for everyone to take part in during lulls in the action. Whatever it is, this is one of the best aspects of sobriety, you now are engaged in life! Connect with the people you care about; laugh at the commercials; have some fun.

We can help

If you or someone you know needs help with an addiction, please call us today. At First Steps we offer caring support rooted in real-life addiction recovery treatments. Quitting an addiction to alcohol without the assistance of a medical detox can pose serious health risks. For alcohol detox programs that are safe, effective, and proven to work, call us today and take the first step towards freedom: 1-844-489-0836.

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