In 2016, Americans buying booze for the big game spent $1.2 billion on beer, $594 million on wine, and $503 million on liquor. While this year may look different due to COVID-19, of 1,522 people across the country surveyed, a quarter plan to watch the game with people outside their household.
Regardless of whether there’s a party or just a couple roommates watching together, alcohol tends to play a big role in the festivities. It’s okay to feel worried about how you will stay sober, but there are methods for getting through the game without a drink.
Tips for Maintaining Your Recovery During the Big Game
A simple suggestion is to keep a non-alcoholic beverage you like on hand. It’s been incredibly helpful for me to always have a drink to hold at events. Before this weekend, try to stock up on a booze-free drink that you enjoy.
Another more practical tip is to focus on food. Think of snacks you don’t have every day, from that grocery store that’s a little too far away to shop at regularly. Keep those around during the big game so that you can shift the focus away from booze. A lot of watching the game is about ritual; you can make eating this special snack part of yours.
Of course, this is complicated if you have a co-occurring eating disorder. It’s always helpful to know that your support system has your back if you need them, whether about big game booze or food. Before the day of the game, reach out to one or a few supportive people in your life. Let them know you might be needing an extra boost that day. Maybe you talk to them before for encouragement, or call them during if you’re struggling.
You Won’t See Budweiser on Your Screen This Year
There are some signs that the ties between booze and the big game may be shifting, at least this year. Budweiser—the beer brand whose commercials are a staple during the game—is forgoing commercials for the first time in 37 years.
They’re donating the $5.6 million that would have been spent on big game advertising to COVID-19 vaccine awareness campaigns. Monica Rustgi, their Vice President of Marketing, said, “Some people might wonder why we’re not showing up…but we will just show up in a different way.”
This is an important message regarding the vaccine, but it also applies to recovery. Sobriety is about showing up in a different way—being present and connected rather than numb and disengaged. If you’re really into football and want to enjoy the game, it’s better to be present for it.
If you are struggling with a substance use or mental health disorder, there is hope. TruHealing Centers offers high-quality treatment for addiction and mental health disorders in facilities across the country. Our staff—many of whom are in recovery themselves—will help you build a great life in sobriety. Call an admissions specialist at 410-593-0005.