Thread for drinking self-moratoria

Usually, my wife and I do a “dry January.” But we are going away the second weekend of January so a fully dry January is out.

We will be doing a drinking moratorium probably from January 10 thru Valentine’s Day.

This thread is to discuss your own drinking moratoria. (Or others’)

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I will not be drinking anymore

I also will not be drinking any less


I drink, or don’t, and don’t care either way. I’m sure I’ve gone 6 months to a year without alcohol, not because I was ‘not drinking’ but because I simply didn’t care. There’s no ‘dry’ periods because that implies that somehow I’m trying not to drink.
I also don’t care if I do drink, so if circumstances arise, happy to have some drinky-poos.
Not bragging here, but I do think I’m different than many people in my complete lack of concern for the presence of alcohol in my life.

Similiar to OP, SO and I are going away overnight in January, so I may have a drink with them at that point. Otherwise, probably January will be alcohol free for me.

I’m similar to Glenn, but I wish you & your wife the best, @BG5150. May your moratoribus be fruitful (if without yeast).

I won’t be drinking for a few hours. Going to a hockey game in a suite, where the drink will flow and blood will spill.

I don’t drink much. Similar # and SL, I really don’t care either way. I buy a 12 pack of beer and tell other people - “it’s a year supply of beer for me”. I might drink one for two of them, then my 3 adult sons come by the house and drink the rest of them. A year later I’m back at the store buying another 12-pack, so I guess it is a year supply of beer for me.

Best Wishes to all on enjoying alcohol in a controlled manner and lifestyle.

I quit 3-1/2 years ago. Initially quit for a while to help a friend dealing with alcoholism. Looking back I drank too much too. I was always a beer or 2 a night and then 4 or 5 some nights kind of drinker. I drank like that from 19 till I was 39. I would not classify myself as an alcoholic because I had no problems quitting and have never had cravings since. My friend still falls off the wagon once or twice a year.

Anyway, daily drinking covers up all your feelings. The first year of my life without alcohol was rediscovering all the emotions I had been suppressing with alcohol for 20 years. I always thought I was just a logical guy who dealt in reason instead of feeling. What I have come to find out is that was a lie. Alcohol just made me numb. I have brought back all the emotions and anxiety from my childhood since quitting booze and it has been very good for me. I have become a very caring person, a much better father, husband, and boss, and I have a ton of empathy now. I also randomly spurt into tears of joy when I think about the best parts of my life. I never had any of this stuff going on prior to quitting drinking.

It’s really amazing what this “harmless” drug blocks out of your life. I guess many people drink as self medication against these very things. but how can life be full if you never feel anything because of the constant companion of alcohol?

If you really want to know how your life will be if you were sober quit for longer than a month. I would say at least 90-120 days is a decent amount of time for all the lasting effects to wear off and also do a lot of the things you used to while drinking without drinking. This includes, parties, concerts, ballgames, travel, family gatherings, etc, etc, etc.

Lot’s of good info out there by Googling “sober curious”

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We were going to do dry January last year. That stopped on January 6th.

We’re going dry again this year for 4-6 weeks, and then we’ll probably just have a bottle of wine for our anniversary, birthday, etc. dinners. Primarily for weight loss purposes.

I don’t tend to drink too frequently (once a week or so), but the last time I took an extended break (about 5 years ago) was while dropping 50 lbs. Here’s to doing that again.

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We don’t drink too much, just too often.

At least, more often that we used to.

We find a few weeks off from time to time is good for body and soul.

I love reading these stories of people choosing to take control over the alcohol in their lives and make real improvements in their lives. I can’t imagine it’s easy. And it’s not something to which I can really relate. I hope it stays that way for me. I read those threads but usually avoid posting since I feel I don’t have anything to contribute other than some encouragement.

Many years ago when I was in college, I worked with an older man who had been sober for 9 years. He had drank away a success career and retirement. His stories of being a raging alcoholic were enough to scare me away from drinking excessively.

To those on the journey, I wish them success.

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On another moratorium until… NYE.

On a moratorium until tonite around 6. We are meeting friends out for a drink.

This article popped up on my Firefox-new-tab-screen, so I’m posting it here.

text...but the link has pics of cute girls - one with a nose ring

“I Gave up Alcohol Five Years Ago and Here’s What I’ve Learned”

Considering Dry January? Here’s what one writer learned about herself after five years of sobriety.

To save us all some time, I’ll give you the long story short of how I got here. The majority of my drinking years were unremarkable. From age 14 (let’s be honest) to 24, I was absolutely fine 95% of the time. Nothing but mild hangovers and, with the help of dozens of Facebook albums, happy memories. The 5% would be my own silly overindulgence, and a couple of question-marked blackouts. Not bad numbers, really.

Around the age of 24, I suddenly lost my grip on it and the overindulgence and black-outs became more frequent, as did my experimentation with drugs. There was no single life-changing and catastrophic incident, you might be disappointed to read; just a handful of big nights that spelled the beginning of something that would never have a happy ending.

I have borderline personality disorder, where symptoms include excessive behaviours and chronic periods of emptiness and, while I’m not suggesting this diagnosis is entirely responsible for my behaviour, it did make me consider the potential paths that lay ahead of me.

They largely looked like mayhem (the bad kind), destruction and death (arguably the worst kind). While I struggled to stabilise my mental health, I decided the risk just wasn’t worth it. So I called it quits after one last messy New Year’s Eve. On Friday 1 January 2021, I celebrated five years of sobriety, and reflected on what I learned in that time…

Drinking is one of my triggers

I’ve come to realise that alcohol exacerbates the dark and empty feelings I can be susceptible to. It numbs me out, and then I get bored, and then I get sad. As my mental health declined, those three stages of emotion became routine, where the end result was some form of self-harm.

In my younger years, alcohol went in and fun did indeed come out. I was full of energy and brilliant, stupid ideas. But as I got older, a few drinks would fill my head with white noise. In an attempt to feel something again, my solutions would include more drinks, infinite drinks, punching walls and banging my wrists until they turned purple.

Because I went to group therapy for my BPD before I gave up drinking, I never really hashed out the deeper reasons why I did this. So to momentarily sit across from myself and pretend to be my own therapist, let’s say that drinking made the symptoms of my borderline personality disorder flare up, like cold weather does to bad knees. And I have the attention span and tolerance for boredom of a fuzzball pup.

Some doors close, but others open

I miss the madness, I won’t lie. I miss the stories that come from day-to-night drinking, like that St Patrick’s Day where we spent the whole day in O’Neill’s by Leicester Square and sang Irish folk songs in the smoking area with the actual Maverick Sabre.

And then I kissed someone who will forever be known as Not Matt Damon, because I was convinced he looked like Matt Damon and my friends knew full well that he didn’t. Not even a little. And because I couldn’t remember his actual name.

These might not be epic, life-changing experiences but they’re nights out and stories that me and my friends will reminisce about and giggle at forever. I believe one of the best things in life is sharing experiences with other people, and I wouldn’t change that Paddy’s Day for anything.

Sadly, stories like that don’t really happen once you get sober. I mean, they absolutely can, but the probability significantly decreases, and nobody wants forced fun.

On the other hand, I’ve transformed into a more active person, a morning person, and now have new stories I could never have dreamed of. I became a British Champion in savate kickboxing in 2019, and have represented Team GB at European and World Championships. As a previously unsporty person, writing that out and reading it over will never not feel bananas.

Could I have done this while still being a drinker? Sure, probably. But did I get into kickboxing as something to do instead of drinking, and fell in love with the sport, and got quite good at it, and had the time and energy and saved pennies to train and fight around the world? Yes. So goodbye Matt Damon, hello Ally The Destroyer.

Nobody cares, really

I mean obviously people care. My friends and family have been very supportive, and I don’t mind the regular congratulations that I feel thoroughly undeserving of. I’m more talking about the people who haven’t signed up to adore me: acquaintances, former colleagues, Facebook friends. Once you tell people you don’t drink, they only want to know why.

They want you to tell them it all came crashing down after one last decadent night, where you danced naked in a fountain with the Duke of Hastings from Bridgerton . They want the ludicrous, juicy, gory, sexy details.

Once they’ve satisfied their curiosity (and remained entirely unsatisfied by your answer), you’re not that interesting to them anymore. And actually, unless you have something really insightful to share from it, like sobriety has given you a sixth sense or a third eye, they’ve already stopped listening to you forever. So don’t do it for other people. Do it for yourself.

Just because you can, doesn’t mean you should

I’m not actually talking about boozing here, although it’s also true. I’m talking about late ones. Pre-pandemic, of course. When I first started going out sober, I worried about getting tired before everyone else and having to duck out early. I’d drink energy drinks or even coffee at 1am if it were available, and dance furiously into the night. ‘I. Am. Fun… Sober. Isn’t. Boring.”

After a couple of years, I stopped the furious caffeine intake because obviously that was madness and I’d get home and lie in bed with the shakes of my vodka-red-bull university years. I soon let go of the “peaking too soon” fear.

I discovered that, without caffeine, I hit a tiredness wall at about 11pm. But once I push through it, I’m unstoppable. If I wanted to, I could stay up until 8am, or something. That discovery was really liberating, until of course, you realise you’re 31 and a morning person now, and you’re ruined the next day. So just because you can, that doesn’t mean you should.

A friend recently asked me how I push through it, how I stay sociable and have fun when everyone else is “getting on it.” My answer is simple, really: Practice. Fake it til you make it. Sobriety has brought me courage and self-confidence, and now I have no qualms about going up and chatting to strangers. I love meeting new people (and lots of dancing helps too).

The idea of walking into a room full of people I don’t know would have been terrifying years ago, but just last January I turned up to a (pre-pandemic) house party where I only knew the host. I had a great time, made new friends and left at a respectable 1am.

I’m in control, no matter what

I’ve changed a lot in five years. Giving up drinking has calmed me down, given me more self-confidence, made me a morning person and put me largely back in control of my mental health. Sobriety, and the boxing that came along with it, also taught me to let go of things that I can’t control. In retrospect, it probably prepared me quite well for 2020.

Even though I obviously haven’t been able to box, I’ve turned my energy to other new interests, more writing and volunteer work, and have been lucky to get through 2020 with only a couple of BPD episodes… and still teetotal.

I also count myself lucky to have never had a wobble; I’ve never been tempted to crack open a bottle or pinch a cigarette. For me, the negatives outweigh the positives, and even if I’m feeling really stressed, I know a wine or smoke will only help temporarily; the cause of my stress will still be waiting on the other side. It’s done me better in the long run to figure out how to work through my problems.

I’m not preachy about it. Have a glass, have a bottle, if you like. Sometimes I wish dates would have one, rather than politely sticking to water, just to relax a little bit. But I would encourage everyone to have a go at a Dry January or Stoptober, just to see what you learn about yourself too.

Ooh…article also mentions “Stoptober”. I had never heard of that before.

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I just saw a commercial for Dry February!

Long weekend starting tomorrow, then no booze for 5 weeks until Valentine’s Day.

I’m gonna miss Scrabble Tuesdays with wine and charcuterie.

Last drink was Sunday night, some wine.

Now nothing until Valentine’s Day.

Death in the family. Would be nice to commiserate over some vino. Alas.


A 12-pack of the best nonalcoholic beer for Dry January

Advances in brewing technology have made the NA options tastier than ever.

By Michael Agnew Special to the Star Tribune

January 12, 2022 — 8:22pm

For some, Dry January has been a welcome reprieve. For others, the thought of going another two weeks without the sensory pleasures of a favorite brew may be enough to break them.

In years past, these folks would have been hard-pressed to find a satisfying nonalcoholic alternative; the options consisted largely of pale lagers. Boiling was the primary means of removing the alcohol, and the high heat did such damage to the flavor profile that most of them were completely unpalatable.

Technology has since advanced. New processes like special yeast strains, reverse osmosis, membrane filtration and vacuum distillation have created a new breed of NA beer that retains much more of their original character. And the styles have also expanded to include stouts, IPAs, wheat ales and several others.

But they are still dealcoholized beers, and alcohol is not a flavor-neutral component. While much better, the new processes still alter the profile. If you approach them expecting normal beer, you will be disappointed. But that’s not to say they aren’t good. They are. If you adjust your mind-set and approach them as an entirely different beverage, these new brews offer a delicious alternative to alcoholic beer.


As in the alcoholic craft beer scene, IPA is the most popular of the nonalcoholic beer styles. There are dozens of excellent examples to choose from.

One of the best NA brewers overall is Wellbeing Brewing Co. of St. Louis.

Their full lineup offers a bevy of tasty quaffs, and their IPAs are no exception.

You can smell the citrus and resin hops as soon as you open a can of Wellbeing’s Intentional IPA. The flavor follows the aroma with a burst of pine resin and tangerine citrus with hints of tropical fruit in the background. An assertive bitterness carries through from the start to the long-lingering finish. Low, grainy malt provides some softening sweetness and a fuller body than most nonalcoholic beers, making this a brew that should satisfy most beer drinkers.

Going Places IPA gives the impression of a hopped-up German pilsner with citrusy American hops. Both the flavor and aroma are bright and lemony. Faint notes of pineapple and spice just peek through, and the light body enhances the overall moderate bitterness.

Kora Double Hop IPA from Atmos Brewing Co. in Idaho has a super-citrus aroma that is all lemon and lime, which carries over to dominate the flavor, supported by moderate malt sweetness. Light-bodied and highly carbonated, this comes off a bit like the flavored drinks from San Pellegrino — soda, but not so sweet and with a bit of tart and bitter. In that, it’s really tasty.

If you are a fan of the juicy New England-style IPAs, look no further than Juicy IPA from Untitled Art out of Waunakee, Wis. This one is pretty darn beer-like. The body is appropriately light for the style. What malt there is has a slightly wheaty character. The star of the show is hops. Juicy IPA explodes with the flavors and aromas of grapefruit, grapefruit peel, pineapple and passion fruit. This will be a surefire pleaser for folks who love the hazy IPAs but want a break from the booze.

Juicy Mavs Hazy IPA from Surreal Brewing Co. is another good option. Hops dominate in both the flavor and aroma of this California brew with strong tangerine supported by underlying tropical fruits. The low bitterness of the style can sometimes make them seem thin. Juicy Mavs has a sturdy enough bitterness to give it some structure without overwhelming the flavor. While you can’t taste any malt, it is apparent in the medium-full body. It’s quite delicious.

On the lighter side

Moving to lighter, less hoppy beers, the brewers at Wellbeing come through again with a duo of delicious wheat beers. Heavenly Body Golden Wheat is a light and lemony refresher. Hops are the star, but with less intensity than an IPA. Hoppy notes of lemon peel, zest and juice rest comfortably on a soft bed of bready, wheaty malt with low sweetness. It finishes dry and clean.

Victory Wheat is fuller-bodied than Heavenly Body. The hop flavor and bitterness remain low, allowing the wheat malt to really come through. Medium sweetness is well complemented by notes of bitter orange. I was more than happy to drink an entire 16-ounce can.

Bauhaus Brew Labs was one of the first local breweries to make a nonalcoholic beer. The Minneapolis brewery’s Nah Helles stays fairly true to the Munich Helles style. Bready malt and light sweetness lead into moderate bitterness and a dry, crisp finish. The lemon peel, melon and spice of European hops complete the picture. Bauhaus has expanded the Nah line to include Amber Ale and Pink Guava Sour.

On the dark side

Fans of darker beers need not despair. There are a bevy of black brews to satisfy your craving for roast.

Grüvi Stout from Grüvi in Denver is modeled on a dry, Irish-style stout. While sweeter than a typical dry stout, it does retain the strong dark-roast coffee and slightly burnt roasted barley flavors. Moderate roasted malt bitterness helps to counter the sweetness. Interesting nutty notes add some complexity.

The Bravus Oatmeal Stout from California’s Bravus Brewing Co. is unexpectedly rich for an NA beer. While the malty sweetness could use a touch more roast bitterness to balance it, the dark chocolate and coffee notes combine with a bready/oat background to create a beer that is reasonably close to an alcoholic oatmeal stout.

17 Mile Porter from Surreal Brewing is a velvety blanket of roast, toast and caramel. The bitter roasted malt character is strong enough to elevate it above a brown ale, but not enough to put it into stout range. The medium-roast coffee flavor is softened by underlying toasted bread and caramel sweetness. This is definitely one of the better nonalcoholic black beers.

Pastry stouts sweetened with lactose and vanilla are popular now. If you’re a fan, Surreal’s Pastry Porter is the beer for you. Made with vanilla and cocoa, it’s like a smooth and creamy milkshake. But it manages to stay a bit less sweet than some of the alcoholic pastry beers. Vanilla is the dominant note, with milk chocolate coming in a close second. A soft touch of roasted malt provides some countering bitterness. A light impression of nuts and caramel complete the picture.

Michael Agnew is a certified cicerone (beer-world version of sommelier) and owner of A Perfect Pint. He conducts private and corporate beer tasting events in the Twin Cities, and can be reached at .

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A lot of the comments were surprised they didn’t mention Athletic Brewing. Also a lot liked Heineken 0.0. I don’t care for regular Heineken but the 0.0 is excellent. I’ve tried 3 different Athletic Brewing beers but only really liked Upside Dawn so far.

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Wife is still dry, 4 months now. She was never a raging alcoholic but I’m particularly impressed, because she isn’t generally the kind of person to stick to anything, let alone something so challenging. I think drugs, therapy, and friends are really helping her.

She said it was weird doing meetings, because everyone has stories of their lives completely falling into ruin. And deep down she wants to say “yeah I’m doing this so I don’t end up like you?”