A recent study from North Carolina State University has highlighted how former problem boozers navigate drinking situations.
The findings show that former problem drinkers can find it tricky to navigate social situations where alcohol is involved, and makes clear it's important to support those who aren't drinking and not push non-drinkers to disclose their reasons for not having a drink, says lead author Lynsey Romo.
For the study, researchers interviewed 11 former problem drinkers, who had been sober for between one and 19 years. The work was part of a larger study on how all non-drinkers - not just recovering problem drinkers - navigate social events where alcohol is being served.
Romo said that they found that former problem drinkers still want to be social, of course, but that they had to find ways to determine whether to disclose their non-drinking status to others. He added that the study participants said they felt the need to weigh how much they should tell other people.
Essentially, they assessed the risk of being socially stigmatized if they were open about not drinking or about being in recovery. The study is published in the journal Health Communication.