When I embarked on my journey towards sobriety, I never thought that I would lose friends in the process. I was more concerned about quitting alcohol and staying sober. However, there were more bumps to the journey than I had anticipated. I noticed very quickly that some of the people I called friends were not very supportive of my decision. At first, they were like “oh that’s great that’s really good, congrats, keep that up.” However, as days turned into months that changed. Some friends would be like are you sure you have quit?? Another mocked me and was like oh girl you are going to get so fat. You know drinking keeps you in shape. Or, are you quitting so that you can have a good girl image?
All these baffled me. I didn’t know that some people drank to stay skinny. As far as I was concerned, normal people that didn’t have alcohol problems drank socially to enjoy themselves. So yes, this goes to show you why I started losing friends.
In my opinion yes you do lose friends that you had no business being friends with from the very beginning. The right people will support you and celebrate you.
Alcohol has a way of getting you to do or say things you would never say or do if you are sober. The same goes for people you hang out with. I’ve seen men pick up girls and girls go home with men they would never have gone home with if they were sober. When you get sober you realize that you really don’t have much in common with your so-called friends. When you take time out to evaluate the friendship you are like what was I thinking being friends with them. Actually, you realize that they were drinking buddies that you confused for genuine friends. You might think that that’s not the case because you hang out frequently but, the truth is that alcoholics drink frequently. So, it’s no surprise that you saw each other frequently. You begin to realize that your whole friendship has been centred on alcohol and that you have nothing in common. You don’t share the same views on health, wealth, love, life, etc.
Below are some of the reasons why you begin to lose friends.
- Your definition of friend changes.
If you are a recovering alcoholic, chances are your so-called friends are alcoholics as well. When you get sober, you quickly start to realize how flawed your definition of friends was. Being sober has that effect on you. You start to see things differently. You desire to have people around you that think like you. People that are more compatible with your goals and dreams. Unfortunately, drinking buddies just don’t cut it.
- Your social life changes
As you embark on sobriety you will want to engage in activities that don’t involve drinking. Alcoholics are very goal-oriented people. They know exactly what they want and what takes priority over everything else and that is alcohol. Your drinking buddies will not be very willing to do none drinking activities with you.
- Misery loves company
There’s nothing more comforting for an alcoholic than drinking with a fellow alcoholic. When you quit alcohol, you are taking their comfort away. So, they begin to resent you and this can quickly turn into jealousy. This happens when they have been struggling with alcoholism and they see you succeeding where they have failed. So, they get the impression that you are better than them. Despite the fact that being sober isn’t a competition. Believe it or not, some people have a way of resenting other people’s progress. They say you know your true friends when you are down but, you also know your true friends when you are winning. They don’t say it is lonely at the top for nothing. That saying is true.
- Reality hits you harder
Being sober is like being woke. You suddenly come to the realization that your drunk friends are not as funny as you thought they were. Jokes that you found funny are now gross if not offensive. You begin to wonder, how on earth did I put up with this behaviour for so long. You soon realize you don’t like some people as much as you thought you did. All in all, losing friends isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Sometimes you have to leave some people behind. A wise person once said “If you don’t lose friends when you change your life then, you are probably doing something wrong”.