Goodbye To My Drunken Alter Ego

For the most part I don’t drink much at all; I may even go for weeks without. Then on a night out I’ll go with the purpose of getting drunk (and I’ll even feel disappointed If I don’t manage to get myself into that state.) On my first night out I was nervous as I didn’t know what to expect. It’s also not helped by the fact that for a long time my identity was ‘the shy girl‘ and even though people change as they grow up it can be difficult to shed the notion. Different people have different reasons for drinking, but for me it feels like it helps me to come out of my shell and makes me more fun to be around. I’ve now started to consider whether this is really an ideal mindset to have. It’s more important to be confident in yourself and you shouldn’t feel the need to be in a drunken haze for people to like you.

There can also be a lot of peer-pressure when it comes to drinking, praying on those initial insecurities (see ‘Managing peer pressure to drink.’) This can be an individual thing like telling yourself you need to fit in, or it can occur more directly in the form of a playful gibe, ‘don’t be a bore, have another drink.‘ I also think that because alcohol is so socially acceptable it can be less obvious when this sort of thing is happening. Excessive alcohol consumption can be dangerous and so it should be within our rights to choose what we put into our own bodies. Sometimes it feels like having a social life has become eponymous to going to a pub/bar and drinking, when there are in fact so many other things to enjoy. For example, I like evenings where we play board games or cards. There are so many different types of social interaction that can be enjoyed with others, but are not fully explored just by being in the pub.

I was thinking about all of this after attending a Friday night drinking game as a spectator. I thought it was pretty silly as it encouraged the mixing of drinks and was also team based (potentially adding more pressure as you wouldn’t want to let your mates down.) I also have a low tolerance so I would never join in such games myself, but of this I’m glad because my nights out are cheaper and I’m less likely to drink in copious amounts (apparently a girl collapsed and was hospitalized during a previous year, which isn’t an experience on my life’s to-do list.) Anyway, I made the decision that I wasn’t going to allow myself to get drunk and set a limit on how many I could have. This was a night where I could have done with the courage because it was a large group of people, many of whom I’d never met before, and my boyfriend was going to be too busy managing the event to stay by my side for very long (see ‘The Social Preferences Of An Introvert‘). Oh and they were all going to be stone drunk of course. Somehow, just by being myself, I managed to strike up some enjoyable conversations with a few random people. It seems that I’m not entirely reliant on Dutch courage after all. Some people were sick after the event and it was great not to be one of them for a change. šŸ˜›

I haven’t written this as a rebuke to all who enjoy alcohol or the resulting existence of drinking games and I’m certainly not one to judge after some of the hang overs I’ve woken up to. Such life choices we’re all free to make and I don’t seek to convince people one way or the other. It’s more of a personal thing that I feel like I should stop wasting money for the sole purpose of getting drunk. I think it’s also important to realize that you can have just as much fun without the aid of alcohol and that my company is just fine without the drunken alter ego. I like to collect mead and am also partial to a bit of Baileys; these are drinks that I have at home in moderation as a treat – Other than this I don’t think I’d miss drinking much at all. There’s no problem with enjoying your favourite drinks, but many of us buy stuff that we don’t even like just to get drunk on it. As far as my social life is concerned, I’m going to try cutting it out for a little while or will at least consider my intentions before buying an alcoholic drink. There’s also a certain joy to waking up in the morning bright and full of energy.

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About wallcat

I have a strong passion for computing. In particular programming for which I am able to use a variety of languages including C++, Visual C#, Blitz Basic, Actionscript 2.0, Python and Lua. I also enjoy web-design and have some knowledge of HTML/CSS, PHP/SQL and Javascript. As well as programming I have a strong background in art and enjoy drawing in my spare time. When Iā€™m not sat at my computer I like to keep fit by going to the gym or using my exercise ball.

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