Dear Mouthy Housewives,
My friend joined AA a few months ago and since then it’s been Ten Steps This and Anonymity That. I support her decision to stop drinking, but she told me that she cannot come to my birthday party if there is going to be any alcohol served. I wasn’t going to have an extensive bar, but I was planning on serving wine ( along with other non-alcoholic options). Do I really have to choose between my friend and booze?
Ah. The newly sober. And the friend of the newly sober. How do you support your friend’s important step while still enjoying a well-deserved birthday glug?
You have several options.
#1 Don’t serve alcohol, but alert your non-abstaining friends in advance so that they can bring their own flasks. Then excuse yourselves, one at a time, run to the bathroom and party hearty. It’ll be like high school all over again.
#2. Don’t serve alcohol, and surprise everyone with the wheat grass juice option. It’ll be like college all over again. Especially if you attended Berkley.
#3. Tell your friend that although you support her path to sobriety, you will serve wine at your birthday party. Hopefully she can join you, but if her sobriety is at a stage where she feels unsafe being in an alcohol-friendly environment, then she will need to make a decision that is best for her.
The trick is that if she chooses option #3, you don’t get to pout about it, or tell your other friends that she’s missing your party on purpose. Instead, you should make plans to get together with her at another time to celebrate your birthday. And her milestone, as well.