Cheers to Tears

Navigating the Holidays Sober: Tips and Resources

Thanksgiving is a time of year when families and friends come together to celebrate and enjoy each other’s company. This year, however, there is an added reason for concern: Blackout Wednesday, also known as Drinksgiving, is rapidly approaching.

This night before Thanksgiving is a popular time for excessive drinking, which can lead to a number of risks, such as traffic accidents, drunk driving, alcohol-related accidents, binge drinking, and alcohol poisoning. In this article, we will provide tips on how to stay safe on Thanksgiving Eve and enjoy the festivities without jeopardizing your health or wellbeing.

History of Blackout Wednesday

Blackout Wednesday is a relatively new phenomenon that emerged in the early 2000s. It is believed to have started among college students who return home for Thanksgiving and reunite with old friends.

The night before Thanksgiving became a popular time to party and drink excessively, leading to a wave of hospital admissions and arrests. The name “Blackout Wednesday” stems from the fact that many people end up blackout drunk and have difficulty remembering what happened the night before.

Risks Associated with Excessive Drinking on Thanksgiving Eve

There are several risks associated with excessive drinking on Thanksgiving Eve, including:

Traffic Accidents – With more people on the road visiting friends and family during the holiday season, traffic accidents are a serious concern. Alcohol-impaired driving can lead to tragic consequences.

In 2016, there were over 800 deaths due to drunk driving during the Thanksgiving holiday weekend. Binge Drinking – Blackout Wednesday is closely associated with binge drinking, which is defined as consuming five or more drinks for men and four or more for women within two hours.

Binge drinking can lead to a wide range of short-term and long-term health consequences. Alcohol Poisoning – Drinking large quantities of alcohol in a short period can lead to alcohol poisoning.

Symptoms of alcohol poisoning include confusion, vomiting, seizures, and even coma. If left untreated, alcohol poisoning can lead to death.

Tips for Staying Safe on Thanksgiving Eve

To enjoy your Thanksgiving Eve without putting yourself or others in harm’s way, here are some tips that you can follow:

Make a Plan in Advance – Before heading out to a party, it is essential to plan ahead. Decide on a specific event, know how to get there and back, and make a drinking limit for the night.

Not Driving – If you plan on consuming alcohol, do not drive. This could mean taking public transport or using a ridesharing service like Uber or Lyft.

Plan your trip in advance if you intend to take public transportation. Bringing an Accountability Buddy – Peer support is an excellent way to stay on track with your drinking goals.

Bring a friend who can help you monitor your alcohol consumption throughout the night. Avoiding Packed Locations – Crowded events that encourage binge drinking are never safe environments.

Therefore, it is better to avoid such spaces and opt for a more low-key, safer gathering with those close to you. Pacing Oneself – Drinking too much, too fast is a surefire way to end up feeling terrible while putting yourself in danger of alcohol poisoning.

Hydrate throughout the night, eat before going out, and limit alcohol consumption to one drink per hour. Finding Alternative Stress Management Techniques – Instead of turning to drinking as a way of coping with stress, try alternative techniques like exercise, meditation or catching up with loved ones.


Thanksgiving Eve is a time for celebration, but it is also a time for responsibility. With Blackout Wednesday around the corner, it is essential to be mindful of your limits, plan ahead and take care of yourself during the festivities.

By following the tips outlined in this article, you can enjoy the night’s festivities without jeopardizing your health and wellbeing. Stay safe, and enjoy Thanksgiving!

3) Celebrating the Holidays Sober

The holiday season is often a time when alcohol flows freely. For people in recovery or those who choose to remain sober, this can present a challenge.

Celebrating the holidays sober is not only possible but can also be a rewarding and enjoyable experience. Here are some tips for staying sober during the holiday season.

Hosting a Sober Gathering

One way to celebrate the holidays sober is to host a sober gathering. This can be a great opportunity to socialize without the presence of alcohol.

Instead of serving alcohol, consider offering mocktails, a non-alcoholic version of popular cocktails. You can find plenty of mocktail recipes online, or you can come up with your own creative concoctions.

You might also consider hosting activities like board games, trivia, or karaoke to help keep people entertained.

Communicating Sobriety to Hosts

If you’re attending a gathering hosted by someone else, it’s important to communicate your sobriety needs in advance. This can help ensure that there are plenty of non-alcoholic drink options available and that your host understands and respects your sobriety.

Be honest and direct about your needs and communicate any potential triggers that may cause you to want to drink. You might also consider bringing your own non-alcoholic beverage options so that you’re sure to have something you enjoy.

Sticking to Safe Spaces

Sticking to safe spaces can be helpful when celebrating the holidays sober. Safe spaces can be places where you feel comfortable and accepted while staying away from situations that might trigger drinking.

You may also want to have an exit strategy in place in case you begin to feel uncomfortable or triggered.

Prioritizing Recovery

During the holiday season, it can be easy to neglect your recovery. Be sure to prioritize self-care to help you stay sober.

This can include attending meetings, therapy sessions, or other recovery-related activities that you find helpful. Consider talking to your sponsor or a trusted friend to help keep you accountable.

This can be an excellent opportunity to focus on your recovery while experiencing the joys of the holiday season.

4) Getting Help For Problem Drinking

If you or someone you love struggles with problem drinking, getting help is essential. Fortunately, there are now more ways than ever to receive alcohol treatment, including online options and smartphone apps.

Here’s what you need to know about both.

New Ways of Getting Help

One of the biggest advantages of technology is its ability to provide access to help where it might not be available otherwise. Online alcohol treatment programs are a relatively new development and offer many benefits for people looking for treatment.

Many programs offer expert medical care, coaching meetings, anti-craving medications, and ongoing support. Treatment can be conducted through videoconferencing, phone calls, emails, and texts, providing a more convenient and flexible option compared to traditional in-person programs.

Features of Online Alcohol Treatment Programs

Online alcohol treatment programs often offer a range of features designed to help people overcome their addiction to alcohol. These may include counseling sessions with licensed professionals, medication-assisted treatment, and self-help tools like online support groups.

Additionally, access to care is often available 24/7 and can be more affordable than traditional treatment options. Programs may be tailored to fit the individual’s needs and can also be more private and confidential than in-person treatment.

Benefits of Using a Smartphone App for Alcohol Treatment

Smartphone apps can be particularly helpful for people looking to overcome problem drinking. They can provide personalized support, track progress, and offer resources like mindfulness exercises and meditation.

Some apps even offer features to help distract from cravings or provide emergency assistance in the event of relapse. Accessing treatment through a phone app can be more accessible, and the convenience and privacy make it an appealing option for people who may feel stigmatized by seeking traditional in-person treatment.


Getting help for problem drinking is essential, and there are now more options than ever before to receive treatment, including online alcohol treatment programs and smartphone apps. Celebrating the holidays sober is not only possible but can be a rewarding and enjoyable experience.

Hosting a sober gathering, communicating sobriety to hosts, sticking to safe spaces, and prioritizing recovery can all help to ensure a successful and enjoyable sober holiday season. In conclusion, celebrating the holidays sober is possible with the right mindset and support.

Hosting a sober gathering, communicating your sobriety needs, sticking to safe spaces, and prioritizing your recovery are all essential in ensuring a successful and enjoyable holiday season. Meanwhile, online alcohol treatment programs and smartphone apps offer accessible, convenient, and affordable options for anyone looking to overcome problem drinking.

With these resources and support, anyone can have a happy and sober holiday season. FAQs:

Q: Is it possible to have fun without drinking during the holidays?

A: Absolutely! There are plenty of fun activities and events you can participate in that don’t involve alcohol, such as holiday markets, ice skating, or cookie swaps. Q: How can I help support a loved one who is sober during the holidays?

A: Be respectful of their sobriety needs, offer non-alcoholic drink options, and avoid drinking in front of them. Also, consider planning alcohol-free activities and offer your support in any way you can.

Q: How effective are online alcohol treatment programs? A: Online alcohol treatment programs can be highly effective, offering many of the same services as traditional in-person treatment programs, with the added benefits of convenience and accessibility.

Q: How can I deal with alcohol cravings during the holidays? A: Distract yourself with activities like exercising, meditating, or doing a craft project.

You can also reach out to a supportive friend or attend a support group meeting. Q: Can I attend an alcohol-filled event if I’m sober?

A: It’s up to you, but it’s important to be aware of your triggers and have an exit strategy in case you become uncomfortable or triggered. You may also want to consider attending an alternative event that is more conducive to your sobriety needs.

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