Survive the Holidays in Style! | The Fix
facebook twitter RSS
HOT TOPICS: Alcoholism  Addiction  AA  Cocaine  Heroin

Survive the Holidays in Style!


Be a sober role model for Santa Photo via

By Kristen McGuiness


| Share

(page 2)

Yoon, a 43-year old part-time publicist and mother of two who’s now five years sober, knew from the get-go that she had to stay away from risky environments during the holiday season. “Whether it was family or old friends, I knew that there was going to be this assumption at these gatherings that I still drank,” she says. “There were so many people who didn’t know I was sober, and so I knew if I went, I was going to want a drink and feel like I had to say no at every turn.”

Back then, she used to have her husband play interference for her. “Though he really didn’t understand what alcoholism was, he knew that I couldn’t drink and so he would help me out,” she recalls. “He would tell people I was the designated driver and work to take the attention off of me. After a while, I could take care of it on my own. But at first I needed his help.”

For those who struggle with drinking friends, angry relatives, and the general malaise that can come with Christmas cheer, McCarty reminds us all that ultimately, the holidays are about being grateful and summoning up whatever gratitude is possible is almost always a mood-improver. “December 25th is just another day on the calendar,” she says. “And if you want to celebrate it just by writing thank you notes to God, to your family, or to the people who helped you get sober, you can. When we’re really grateful, even for the small things, we want to give it away. We want to find ways of being of service so we can start staying busy, instead of staying busy thinking.”

Helping out other people is actually what gets Jason out of his holiday funk. “When I’m doing service, I’m not in my head—I’m just thinking about cleaning some glasses,” he says. “Then it’s not about the gifts I can’t afford or what my mom just said, but about helping someone else. And that, to me, is really celebrating holidays.”

Kristen McGuiness is a freelance writer and regular contributor to The Fix who wrote previously about old timers in AA and sober travel, among many other topics. She is the author of 51/50: The Magical Adventures of a Single Life

Rehabilitation Directories

Most Popular
Sober Living
Normies React to the 12 Steps

"I think admitting to having a problem in general is the right first step, but to admit powerlessness is unhealthy. .. I think admitting powerlessness is more harmful because it doesn't help. Admitting that you want and need help is more useful after admittance."

The Rehab Review
Cliffside Malibu

The “beach-house-relaxed” Cliffside Malibu claims to provide an oasis for recovering addicts and alcoholics. And that’s just what you'll get—if you’ve got the cash.

Morningside Recovery

For a “rehab near the beach” experience that isn’t quite as costly as similar SoCal competitors, head to this Newport Beach treatment facility.

AToN Center

Whether you’re interested in the 12 Steps, SMART Recovery, or holistic treatments, this luxurious, appealing and commendable 4.5 star (our system doesn't yet show the 1/2 star) San Diego rehab has a program for you. 


This exclusive Northern California rehab is all about client choice—as well as golf outings, Buddhist field trips and keeping up with the office.

Capo By The Sea

Capo By The Sea offers an executive rehab program complete with medical detox and a focus on dual-diagnosis issues, as well as an outpatient option in an environment that exudes the kind of beach house optimism one would expect from an Orange County recovery outfit.

Journey Malibu

Want many of the luxury amenities A-listers have come to expect—including an enormous backyard with a pool and patio, an herb garden, a volleyball net and a spectacular vista of the Santa Monica mountains—with a recovery program to match?

The Ultimate Guide to Rehab

What you need to know when choosing an addiction treatment center.

the fix tv