I Don’t Drink, Except When I Do

I Don't Drink, Except When I Do.

[dropcap]S[/dropcap]omething tells me I need to take better care of my nails. Or at least keep them looking moderately presentable. You never know when you might be pestering your worse half to take ‘look at me being fancy’ photos of you, holding ‘look at me being fancy’ drinks. I’m a disaster (I’m not). I’ve also decided that I subconsciously bite my lip way too much, not even in a sexy way, and so have created a permanent dent in my bottom lip. It makes me look like I’m pouting and I’m really not. Not much, anyway.

Enough of that. Just let me remember what I was actually going to write this post about, other than picking apart what is actually a pretty good photo of me…

Oh yes, alcohol.

So contrary to that photo, I don’t drink. That’s obviously a little lie as I’m very obviously drinking a fancy Bellini on the roof of Tom’s Kitchen, HMS Belfast. On the whole, however, I do not touch the demon.

I’d say I have a drink once every other month. A little more often in the last few months, but before that it was a solid six months of alco-abstinence. And a good 10 months before that. I don’t drink with meals. I don’t drink on nights out (lol if I even bother to go). I don’t drink at home watching Grey’s. My alcohol intake is reserved entirely for a glass of prosecco/cava/champagne at some sort of celebration, and the odd rogue cocktail that I then immediately regret. If it were my birthday and you offered me a glass of bubbly I’d probably say no, if I’m really honest. I like diet coke, water, and squash. That’s about it.

Alcohol is not my jam.

People are weird about that fact. Not super weird, and not now that most of my friends have graduated and are getting over the whole ‘drinking is cool’ thing, but sometimes people are weird. Weirdly though, this post isn’t going to be about how annoying it is when people stare at you like a dancing dog, eyes wide, when you say you don’t drink.

This post is going to be about how damn annoying it is when I do occasionally have a drink. When I feel a bit cheeky (lol) and have a gin & tonic, or a flute of something, or maybe a Sex On The Beach.

This is when the questions start.

If you’ve been here on the long term, and shout out to you, then you’ll remember that time I was ‘vegan’. I was straight up vegan for about six months, having been vegetarian before, on and off. I say vegan, as it was the easiest way to describe my eating habits, but what I was really wasn’t strict and plant based, at all. I ate what I wanted and 99.9% of the time, that was completely vegan. That .1% was the odd spaghetti bolognaise or chicken nugget. This is because it’s my body and my life and I can eat exactly what I want. No hate.

The questions I get from the occasional tipple are the same as those I got from those that saw me nibble on that nugget.

‘I thought you don’t drink?’ On the whole, I don’t. ‘Why are you drinking?’ Because I want to. ‘Do you not feel bad for drinking?’ Do you? ‘Will you regret drinking?’ Probably, to be honest. ‘So do you drink or not?’ On the whole, I don’t. ‘But you do?’ Yes, but only on a full moon when Mercury is in retrograde…

Why do y’all care so much about whether or not I’m doing something? Why is it so important to you? Why do I owe you an explanation?

I’m not a preachy non-drinker. I don’t proclaim it to the entire bar before I order a drink. I don’t mention it every three seconds. I don’t bring up the fact that I never get hangovers or spend the night with my head in the loo. I never talk about how my skin is amazing. I never talk about how much money I save, especially in Durham, by only drinking 50p pints of Diet Coke. I’m a super cheap date.

I never ever bring it up, unless I’m asked.

‘Hahaha how’s that student life? Do you ever make it to lectures? Lol alcohol poisoning! Lad lad lad.’ Ah yeah it’s fun but I don’t actually drink so not too bad, thanks.

Maybe I’m misleading people.

But what would you rather I said, as I ordered a diet coke in a Shoreditch bar on a Friday night?

‘Hi, I’m Imii, and I do drink but only once in a while so right now I’m going to order this coke, with ice, and enjoy it and have a good time and I’m not going to give a damn about what you’re drinking. I’m also going to have far more money left in my bank account at the end of the night.’

Maybe.

For now I’m just going to stick to ‘I don’t drink’ and wait for everyone just to get over it.

 

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  • Jessie Lewis says:

    Yes!! I love this. I drink occasionally, probably once a month, but I absolutely hate the feeling the next day and instantly regret it. I can’t really say I enjoy drinking that much and since university I would much rather spend my saturday night doing something productive or meaningful than getting wasted on a night out. xx

    Jessie | allthingsbeautiful-x

  • Lucy says:

    Love this post so much – drinking culture is such a big thing and I personally choose not to drink. Although like you, if I fancy having a drink at a party I will. And then yes the questions pop up like ‘I thought you didn’t drink’, its a bit annoying. Loved this post!

    Lucy | Forever September

  • I love this! I hardly ever drink, but when I do my face breaks out and then I realize why I never drink! People always ask questions when I defer from having one.

    Carrie | http://carrieelise.com/

  • Zohra says:

    Loved this post! People need to just chill and focus on themselves, nobodys perfect! Btw, totally with you on the nails, mine are always horrendous and I regret it when I’m taking blog pics ahah xx

    http://www.yourealreadyinvited.com

  • Harriet Pattison says:

    Such a good post! Just stumbled across your blog and love it. To be honest, I got out of the whole drinking thing after leaving uni, I’m just not that into it any more and you’re right, those ‘WTF’ stares are just the worst. Eugh.

    X

    Harriet | A Fashion & Lifestyle Blog

  • Kathryn O'Connor says:

    This post was so accurate. I rarely drink. Like when I go out with friends, I drink. When I’m on holiday, I drink. But I’ve never found satisfaction in sitting at home having a glass of wine. I never really got that and I don’t think I ever will! x

    Kathryn | Chapters of Kat

  • Sam says:

    I am EXACTLY the same as you. I drink verrrrry occasionally and usually order a diet coke. But like you, I never bring it up because people do seem to have an issue with it. It’s very weird that society doesn’t seem to accept non-drinkers! xxx

    Sam // What I Know Now

  • I won’t lie I LOVE drinking! I have for years since college and when I was in uni for a few weeks on my access course I got drunk most nights! It’s each to their own and if you’re happy that’s all that matters! Xx

    OliviaCheryl.com

  • Jennifer says:

    YES! I love this post! I’m also pretty much a non-drinker, but just sometimes I enjoy a glass of wine or a couple of cocktails. I really don’t understand why people like to catergorise others as “drinkers/ non-drinkers” – why does it matter?!
    Jennifer x
    Ginevrella | Lifestyle Blog

  • Paige says:

    haha, PREACH. your perspective is great & I’ve been dealing with the same thing for a while–I find that people are generally more relaxed now that we’ve left student life behind, but at the same time since I really don’t drink except for maaaybe one glass of cider on a night out (if I decide to splurge) I’m always asked “Why aren’t you drinking?” “Do you look down on people who do?” “Have you ever been drunk? NO?! C’mon you have to experience everything!!!”… and all the questions you outlined as well.

    Ultimately, it’s a choice that literally only pertains to my life. I’m not hurting anyone by not drinking a lot, and I’m certainly not hurting myself, so it gets pretty annoying that people can get in such a tizzy about trivial things that only make a difference to myself. I say keep going and doing your thing and enjoying it!! 🙂

  • Sam Ball says:

    This was brilliant, Imii!

    You definitely shouldn’t have to explain yourself, and it’s sad that many people have made you want to ‘clear it up’, but quite frankly no one should question your choices. That’s ridiculous.

    I don’t drink all too often and that’s something that’s bothering me about attending uni next month because I’m telling myself I have to go out more. But hey, when you get to the end of a fun night and you’ve still got plenty of money left in your purse and no hangover the next morning, who’s the real winner?

    Sam xo
    Alright Sunshine | Fashion Lifestyle Travel

  • Marie says:

    FINALLY someone who gets it! Haha I get so many weird looks when I tell people I don’t drink, just feel like I’m getting labelled as ‘the boring one’ or people just think it’s a ‘phase’ and that I will when they convince me!
    lovemariexo.blogspot.co.uk
    xxx

  • “Come on, are you even drunk yet. Here i bought you some shots. We need you drunk before we hit the town so its a cheap night.” For who? You don’t buy my drinks. Ugh! I go out a couple times a month but i like not having a hangover because i have my baby to look after the next day. I’m not going to stupidly drink because the rest of the bar are. Even yesterday when i went on a nature walk i got frowned at necause i prdered a coke, not a beer. What. Haha! Love this post!

  • Aisling says:

    I’m like this too! I’ve definitely had periods where I’ve drank more, but I’ve never been a huge fan and I am an even bigger lightweight. Also I find, as a person with anxiety, it seems counterproductive to pay for medication to keep me up and then to drink something that will bring me down. But yeah, it’s not that I DON’T drink, it’s that mainly I don’t want to. Sometimes I want a glass of wine. Or a girly drink with an umbrella. Very occasionally I just want to get drunk and dance. But as for my day-to-day life? No thanks!

    Aisling | anthologie.

  • Aimee Julia says:

    Ah I can so totally relate to this. I so rarely drink that I always just say, when asked, “I don’t drink.” But then whenever I decide, “oh go on, tonight I’ll have a malibu and coke” or whatever, the questions start. Why can’t people just leave others alone to live life as they want?! I don’t drink most of the time, and sometimes I decide to indulge in a tipple, and that’s okay. It’s also okay if I don’t. Whatevs, right? x http://www.aimeeraindropwrites.co.uk x

  • Martha Jane says:

    I’m totally the same, and this is painfully relatable. It’s damned if you do, damned if you don’t! x

    Martha Jane | http://www.marthajaneedwards.com

  • Katie Louise says:

    I’m not a fan of drinking. I don’t mind the odd one or two every now and then, but I hate the ‘drunk’ feeling, and it just makes me feel tired more than anything. There is such a weird stigma with not drinking. Suddenly you’re a boring person, you have no fun and whatever else they can think of.

  • i rarely drink now and i still feel uncomfortable when i turn it down, which is silly – it’s like when i feel my family judge me for not eating meat… it’s MY body! I can choose what i put into it and i need to accept that. Thank-you for this, more people need to talk about it xxxx

    Bumble and Be

  • Amber Davey says:

    Aw girl I’m sorry people have been sucky and judgemental to you – I hate it! I also hate the totally drunk irresponsible student stereotype, like yeh some are like that, but so are lots of non-students? Maybe even more so! Like it’s one of the first things some people will ask me – not how is your course going, do you love it? Or have you made some good friends? Not gonna lie, I do drink quite often, I love trying new drinks haha.

    I’m also sorry people judged you for being ‘almost’ vegan. I’m vegan, although I’m sure no one is completely 100% vegan unless they literally live in the mountains, with no car or even a bike, make their own clothes etc (which actually would be a dream but modern life ya know). Even plastic bags use animal fat to make them ‘slippy’ (ew). I feel like I constantly have to defend my decision to live vegan, people get so defensive immediately and I’m like well if you are so defensive maybe that’s about how you feel…. I do love sharing vegan recipes and accidentally vegan products though!

    Soz for the essay haha, just found your blog and really love it here <3

    Amber Love Blog

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