I went sober for a month at university and it wasn’t actually that bad

Let’s stop shaming Stoptober

If you’ve watched any film about life at a typical university, you'll have seen students partying whilst being inebriated on a scale from 'tipsy' to 'gazeboed'.

After all, what's a good party without Mr Brightside and a bottle of your favourite tipple? What would happen if you were forced to use something other than liquid confidence to introduce yourself to strangers? What if you, dare I say it- you didn't drink?!

Well for the past month I have tried this novel experience out at university. No, this wasn’t due to finding inner peace at a yoga retreat or being converted by vegan posters, the effects of alcohol just simply stopped appealing to me.

Farewell long necked friends

Farewell long necked friends

Uni can seem like a daunting place for those that stop drinking for a short period of time, or simply just don’t find alcohol appealing at all. Walking into parties with people chanting ‘down it’ like they’ve been possessed by evil spirits (probably vodka) is not always the most comfortable environment for anybody, let alone those that choose not to drink.

What’s more, drinking games are a no-go. Playing Ring of Fire with a group of strangers suddenly becomes a daunting, harrowing experience. Landing on the last king knowing you might effectively destroy any blossoming friendships by explaining you don’t drink alcohol is undoubtedly stressful.

No more getting #wgw

No more getting #wgw

So, why judge people that don’t drink at all, or at least very rarely? Alcohol, like any food or drink or you consume, is a choice. It shouldn’t be used as a platform to judge how 'cool' people are. In fact, the people that tend to make sure their very drunk friend is still functioning are often the most interesting.

This is in no way supposed to slander anyone who drinks at university. However, it’s time to end the stigma around people that don’t drink, or drink very rarely. It’s not prudish and it’s not to seem superior; it’s just a choice.

No more drunken snapchats for this one

No more drunken snapchats for this one

So, if anyone chooses to go sober for October – go for it. Whether you’re doing it for charity or simply to wake up in time for your 9am without a hangover, it’s time to end the stigma around sobriety.

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University of Bristol