Oct 24, 2019 | By Tim Stoddart

5 Ways to Have The Best Sober Halloween


As one of the top drinking holidays of the year, navigating Halloween sober can be frightening in itself and leave a haze of trepidation into the Fall air. While active addiction didn’t just creep in on holidays, dressing up and heading out to a party gave us another excuse to indulge in our addictions. Dreading being exposed to a drunk girl in a risqué costume or a plastered friend in their “Where’s Waldo” T-shirt costume can create a sense of internal struggle of wanting to join in on the fun, but at the same time considering yourself lucky that you don’t have to.

Typically, not all Halloween days are major party days, but the week before has become customary for people to throw parties and costume contests – most of the time with alcohol involved. Can experiencing a Halloween sober create the same type of fun it once had in our drinking days? Planning our your night and putting a different kind of energy into the holiday can ultimately help you stay sober and prevent relapse.

If you’re struggling to come up with a plan this year, here are some new ideas and possibilities to enjoy the spooky night – sober.

Ditch the Parties

In early sobriety, the party scenes can sometimes be a little too triggering. Instead of exposing yourself to the risk of relapse, spend time with family. If there are little ones in your family, spend this time to bake spooky treats with them or take them trick-or-treating. When we get sober, repairing the damage we’ve done in the past is crucial to clearing our side of the street and maintaining long-term sobriety. Why not start the process now with the ones you love the most? Instead of looking at Halloween as a night of partying, instead, change your perspective to look at it through the eyes of the children in your family.

Have A Scary Movie Party – Or Go To A Movie

There’s nothing more festive on Halloween than a couple of scary movies. Pick out a couple of your favorites, grab some friends, and set up on the couch for the night. According to Time, scary movies can create an adrenaline rush which can create hormones to boost our well-being and decrease our anxiety levels.

If you’re not satisfied sitting on the couch watching a movie, take a trip to the movie theatre with a couple of sober friends. Sneak in your favorite candy and see the movie that you’ve been wanting to see. Oftentimes with families trick-or-treating and others out partying, the movie theatre is likely to be deserted.

Create Your Own Traditions

If you’re wanting to do something fun for the holiday but not the partying type, there’s a plethora of things you can do to create your own yearly tradition. This tine of year, there’s typically Halloween-themed 5k races where you can dress in costume, or pass out candy to those that come to your door. You can also find ways to donate your time. Often times, local community centers or churches have Halloween events or “Trunk or Treat” nights where locals dress up the trunk of their cars in school parking lot or business and kids go trunk to trunk picking up treats.

Party With Sober Friends

Oftentimes, many 12-step houses or sober groups throw Halloween dances, costume contests, and sober parties. The music, the food, and the social settings are all still the same – only without the booze. Oftentimes, partying with sober friends can help us maintain a deeper sense of appreciation for the relationships we have in our lives and the times we share together. We can dance to the music more fluidly, have deeper conversations, and wake up the next morning without a hangover! Whether throwing your own sober party or attending one, you can have an enjoyable night without the risk of relapse.

Find A Haunted House

No matter where you live, there’s sure to be haunted houses or events in your area. In Southern California, many flock to Knott’s Scary Farm for their yearly dose of scares. In Florida, there are those that go on a yearly expedition to Universal Studios for Halloween Horror Nights. Though, no matter where you live, there’s more than likely a haunted attraction in your area to get your blood flowing and have a year of fun-filled memories.

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