Why you lose friends when you quit alcohol

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”.

–  Anonymous.

WHY MOST PEOPLE DON’T SUPPORT YOUR DREAMS

If you have ever wanted to embark on something big, be it a new business, or a new career or an extreme weight loss program or even a hobby that will improve your life. You must have been very shocked when you told someone or everybody you told shot it down. It’s very confusing when you are on the receiving end of this kind of treatment. You will think, for once I have a brilliant idea, why can’t they just support me? You wonder why this happens. Unfortunately, this lack of support and criticism may be from your parents, partners, friends, haters, teachers, “mentors “, siblings are extremely notorious for this. Some will come up with a thousand ways why your idea is destined to fail. Some will laugh at you and dismiss you. The very toxic ones will humiliate you and embarrass you for even thinking you can do better.

These are the reasons they don’t support you. 

  • They mean well. This is true for parents who don’t support their children’s choice of careers. For example, they may believe that it’s better to be an accountant than to be a you- tuber. That’s because they are more comfortable with something tried and tested other than something new and unknown.
  • They are jealous and insecure. When you want to do better some people just can stand it. They feel as though their position is under threat and that they will no longer be relevant. Most of the time, people that criticize you, know your value even when you don’t. They forget that their jealousy doesn’t block your destiny. For example, in the bible, there is the story of David and his older brother Eliab. When Eliab heard that David was enquiring about Goliath and that he was having a good rapport with the soldiers he started to mock him and asked him who was taking care of the sheep and that he wasn’t a soldier and that he had no business being at the camp. Later, David became king of Israel and king over Eliabs.
  • They don’t understand your goal. This happens when you tell your friends about a business idea and they aren’t conversant with the industry. It’s like asking a cobbler to support and give you ideas on how to run a jewellery shop. You are better off discussing your plans with people that are already successful in the industry that you are interested in; they are better suited to giving you the support you need.
  • They have a scarcity mentality. When you have a grand idea that requires a lot of money it’s likely to scare people and most of them will advise you against investing that kind of money into a business or even on yourself. For example, they will not understand why you spend a lot of money on a luxury car when you could have donated the money to charity or invested it. They don’t believe in abundance; they don’t see how you could have that car, make worthwhile investments and donate to charity. They believe to have one you must pass on the other. 
  • You are looking for support from haters. These are downright toxic people who are committed to finding fault with everything you do. Nothing you ever do will be good enough for them. They are mainly strangers or people whose opinion doesn’t count but they have an opinion anyway. Ironically, their hate and criticism can work into challenging you to not only go far but to go further than they said you could.

The thing about dreams and ambitions is that they are given to us by a superpower. Be it God or the universe. Every person has a dream unique to the individual. Rarely will two people have the same passion or ambition, and even when they do, the expression of that dream differs from person to person. Dreams are given to you for a reason and a purpose. It’s up to you and only you to believe in them. Nobody else has the duty of believing in them. If everybody else had the duty of believing in them, it would have been given to them too. Most people don’t know or understand your dreams, because ambitions whisper, they don’t roar. They keep you awake at night until you turn them into reality. 

When people undermine your dreams, predict your doom or criticize you remember they are telling you their story, NOT YOURS–Cynthia Occelli.

AFTER ALL I’VE DONE FOR YOU: THE GUILT TRIP

If you have ever tried to cut ties with someone or the friendship or relationship just went cold, you must have heard things like, “after all, I’ve done for you” or “ you never know when I might be useful” or “my door is always open” after they have committed their atrocities. This is what a guilt trip looks like. Its manipulation and creates resentment. It is a form of psychological abuse.

Examples of guilt trips

  • Someone does something offensive and then gets offended that you are offended. Or acts a fool and pretends like they never did anything wrong and that you are at fault. They forgive you for getting angry at their nasty behaviour.
  • They try and make it look like they did you a favour when in reality there wasn’t much in it for you, and they proceed to act as though they never got anything out of it. A perfect example is when a mother tries to manipulate a child into doing something and they go like “I gave birth to you” for goodness sake the child was born without their permission they didn’t even sign up for it.
  • They make you feel like something is your fault when it isn’t. So that you can “fix” it by doing as they are demanding. Unfortunately, these demands usually come across as requests and that is why they are so convincing.

Characteristics of guilt trippers

  1. They have a desire to be needed. That’s why they say things like, you never know when you will need me. These are people that are happy when you fail. They sit and eagerly await your downfall so that you can go back crying to them for help.
  2. They are insecure and feel unworthy They need to preach their worth. They want to be considered worthy even when they aren’t. That’s why they use phrases like, you never know when I might be useful to you.
  3. They are selfish. These are people who are only friends with you because of what they think they can get from you. They have no idea what true friendship is. They don’t mind sugar-coating the truth if it will get them what they want.
  4. They have a sense of entitlement They forget that friendship with anyone is a privilege and not a right. They believe that their friends owe them something or that they can make demands on them.
  5. They lack accountability. If they do something, and it doesn’t go according to plan, they will pin it on you. They will never accept the role they played that brought about the conflict and the only way to make it right according to them is to give in to their demands as usual.
  6. They aren’t genuine. They eagerly wait for you to be in trouble or need help so that they can use your situation to their advantage. What you see isn’t what you get and they are dishonest as well. 

How to deal with them

1. Don’t give in to their demands.

When dealing with guilt trippers you have to put a stop to it because they won’t. They are morally bankrupt, so don’t expect them to stop. When you give in to their demands the first time they will keep demanding, it’s a never-ending cycle. 

2. Consider their deeds paid in full.

 If they give you anything consider it a gift and appreciate it. If they expect something in return then that is business, that isn’t help and they shouldn’t trick you into thinking that they helped you because they didn’t. They did so for their own selfish needs. Instead of trapping you into something you had no idea about, they should have stated what they wanted in return from the beginning. 

3. Don’t make it your problem.

Don’t get mad and don’t get your feelings hurt. They are who they are. Nothing you do will be enough for them. If you get hurt then you are making it your problem. You are allowing them to project their insecurities on you.

4. Feel free to cut them off.

You don’t need them. Your sanity isn’t negotiable. Anything or anyone that threatens your sanity isn’t needed. If you managed to get out of a situation or friendship that was draining you, remember God will not allow you to crawl back to the hell hole, he dragged you from. If you ever need someone, he will send someone better your way.

 No one meant to be in your life will ever require you to betray yourself to keep them. – Anonymous  

  • For any further enquiries or if there is anything you would like me to address feel free to email me at knightlady039@gmail.com or leave a  comment.