I just got a comment from Raw Vegan Power on my old post on Alcohol & Raw Food, which was, in turn, my reaction to a post from the now-defunct, but previously-fabulous Raw Foods Right Now blog. I’m including RVP’s blog post which included my post which included RFRN’s post , because I find some important issues in it.
RVPwrites: With the end of year festivities nearing very fast, I asked myself raw vegan alcohol or drinking alcohol on a raw vegan diet is ok? I’m preparing myself to join my family in parties in which I’m sure my sister, uncle, grandma and cousins will find strange that I won’t be drinking beer or any other alcohol drinks. And, to be very honest with you, I really find this type of alcohol pressure really annoying, but I think I have to face my fear of spending some time with them. After all they are my family, and I have to join them at least in this part of the year, as I don’t live in their city anymore. Well, anyway, that’s the reason that, being a brand new raw vegan foodist, I was very glad to find the following article by Heidi Ohlander, from www.rawfoodrightnow.com , as she explains so well this whole deal!
I’m glad to know now that some organic wine would be raw and ok to drink sometimes. But beer is out of question. Let’s say that raw vegan alcohol is allowed but with caution. Drinking the two glasses of water will be really great to dissolve all the alcohol and to prevent it to dry my body, inside and outside. By the way, alcohol is not good for the skin, it ages and dries the skin. I also loved the following video, from Raw Radiant Health, because she explains very well how to handle the social interaction with family and also in clubs and bars.
Great advice! I think now I’m prepared to face my family next Christmas and New Year’s Eve.
What concerns me here is the mention of pressure, or concern about what other people will think if one is not drinking alcohol.
There are all kinds of ways to refrain from drinking alcohol in front of people who are doing it and think you should, too.
If we are talking about friends, if your friends cannot respect that you do not want to drink alcohol, what kind of friends are they? I mean, at least, they could use you as the designated driver! Even so, you might explain that you have suddenly found that you are allergic to alcohol (alcoholics are, actually, allergic to sugar, which means they are allergic to alcohol, but, in a different way than we usually consider allergies – if they consume it, they want more, much as sugar addicts do). You could explain that you have a sensitivity to sugar. You could say that you are on antibiotics and cannot drink alcohol. True friends would understand any of these excuses — actually, true friends would understand if you said you just didn’t want to drink alcohol.
With family, I guess, things might be different. My family is funny in that way. A close relative went into rehab for alcohol abuse, and, since then, whenever he comes by my mom’s house, the only libations are iced tea, coffee, or soda.
When I am around, they just ask me if I would like some of the drink they are mixing. If I say no, thank you, they just go on about their business, and simply ask me what I would like to drink instead.
If your family thinks it is odd that you are not drinking, you might simply say that you are on medication and can’t drink (or course, you will have to think up what you have, but, hey! we get infections all the time – surely you can invent something!) There are so many excuses for not drinking (if you really don’t want to drink) that other people will accept, just as there are excuses that you can give for not eating this or that, which other people will accept.
Another way to deal with in-family holiday drinking is to offer to make a special drink (think pina colada, or not-eggnog, or anything else that might work) and then just forget to put the alcohol in your glass).
My parents told me, when I was in high school, that some people (boys) might try to get me to drink so they could *you know what*. That worked on my head (I wasn’t necessarily sure, at first, what *you know what* really was, but I knew it was something I shouldn’t or didn’t want to do) Those admonitions have served me well. I find ways to get around drinking if I don’t want to do it, and, fortunately, I have never been around people who found it weird that I wasn’t drinking (okay, I have a friend who has gotten testy if I’ve gone to a bar with her and only ordered a club soda, but she has always backed down if I’ve told her I’m on some medication or other).
Ultimately, it is up to each one of us to follow the path that we believe to be correct. If you don’t want to do something, whatever that is, you should refrain from doing it. What others do is not necessarily what you have to do. You do what you want to do.