If you’re like many men and women, you’ve had your share of drunken nights with friends or with a date and woke up the next morning not only with a hangover, but with much regret about things said or done the night before. Yes, Americans sure can find every reason to party, but for a growing number of people, drinking is off limits. They’ve decided to put down the booze and live life on sober terms- and that includes dating.
Dating is no small task, for sure. It can provoke more anxiety than we like to admit. So, heading into the dating world sober, changes the name of the dating game in a big way. You wonder how it will look. Should I scratch meeting someone at a bar? Do I tell my date that I’m not a drinker? Is there anyone else sober that’s available? Yes, questions do arise, but rest assured that you can date without drinking and you can find that special someone who values sobriety as well.
Here are 5 ways to date without drinking:
Dating can be tough on the nerves for sure. In fact, anxiety is one reason many people over-drink on dates. Although you may be nervous, keep in mind that there are ways you can learn to relax yourself and build up your confidence. Taking a few deep breaths before the date can ease your nerves, as can consciously focusing on your breath some during the date. This keeps you more centered and more rational. After all, much of the anxiety that pops up while dating is due to irrational thoughts. Mentally remind yourself to breathe in confidence and to also breathe out all the tension.
Know where to find potential sober dates
Perhaps you’re at a loss because other than the bar scene, you don’t really know where to find another sober date. Of course, you can ask your friends if they know of any individuals in the sober realm. Although the best way to meet others comfortably is through a 100% sober dating website. Yes, there are sober-only dating sites at your fingertips that you can sift through, seeking those who value sobriety. This way, both of you know right up front that sobriety is a shared value.
Enjoy your date in an alcohol-free venue
It’s just a matter of time before you’re faced with someone wanting to meet you, or the guy or gal you’re crushing on gives you the vibe that it’s time for a date. Where do you meet up? The bar scene is out the door, since you don’t want to be tempted to have a drink to calm the nerves. Good news is that there are plenty of alcohol-free venues to choose from for dating. From coffee shops to booze-free festivals to ice cream parlors and more. The most popular alcohol-free dating option is a coffee shop; you usually can’t go wrong there on a first date.
Be up front about your sobriety, but be coy
It’s fine to let your date know that you are not a drinker up front. This will eliminate some of your anxiety, so you’ll be able to let go of wondering what the response will be like. If you’re meet up on a 100% sober dating site, you might not even have to have that conversation. Keep in mind that you don’t have to go into details about why you don’t drink. Be coy. You can say something like, “Alcohol and I just don’t get along” and let it be. After all, it’s your first date and you don’t have to go into details about your past drinking patterns. Should you continue seeing this person, you can share a bit more about the topic, but in the beginning, keep it short and simple.
Though you may miss how easy it was to flirt when you were tipsy, good news is that you can still flirt like a boss- it just takes some practice! You can work on subtle flirting techniques that will surely show your date that you’re interested. For example, smiling big and keeping eye contact is a subtle, yet effective way to flirt. Leaning in close and touching his or her leg or arm consistently are great flirting tactics that will get attention as well. Have fun, practice flirting, and you can get better!
Sober dating is not as difficult as you may think. If you’ve been putting it off, get on out there and give it a try. Though drinking is popular, there is a sub-culture of ‘sober’ out there ready and willing to go against the grain and have an amazing time doing so. Now, it’s your time!