Sober Atheist

I am in the minority

People are puzzled by the fact that I don’t drink to get drunk. Sometimes, my peers see this decision as a faux pas. I’m a single 23-year-old male living in a college town; people seem to assume that I want to get hammered from time to time, and they sometimes take offense when I don’t want to get drunk with them. I don’t have religious convictions telling me not to drink too much. I don’t have a wife nagging at me to stay sober. I’m not a father trying to be a good role model. None of the stereotypical reasons for staying sober apply to me. What in the world could possibly motivate me to limit my drinking?

The answer is simple: I want to stay in control of my mind.

Sure, I could cite hundreds of scientific articles that detail the hazardous short- and long-term effects of drunkenness, but I probably wouldn’t be telling you anything you haven’t already heard (and most of you would probably tune out at the sight of scientific jargon anyway). It’s really just a matter of self-control. I’ve been drunk a few times before, and I won’t lie… I did have fun. But I don’t remember any of the fun. What I do remember is cleaning my vomit out of the bathtub, being hung over at work, and apologizing to my friends for the bizarre text messages they received from me. It doesn’t matter how much fun I had the night before if I don’t remember it; none of my three drunk experiences were worth the prices I paid the following mornings.

Bro, Jesus may not be real, but id rather belevee in that than.be drunk again. This fuxking sucks. … But I’m an atheist, so in not going stop getting dunk for Jesus.I’m going to stop getting drunk because it’s not what I want to anymore.
text message I drunkenly sent to a close friend, 10/25/2012 3:22 am

I’ve been sober for six months now, and I haven’t cheated myself out of any fun by limiting myself to two beers per sitting. I don’t regret being able to safely drive myself home from my birthday party last month. I’m not upset by the fact that I can remember all the fun I’ve had with my friends. And I proudly refuse to let alcohol impair my decision-making. It’s not because I think drunkenness is wrong or immoral for everyone. It’s not because some invisible magician in the sky told me not to get drunk. It’s because I made a rational decision based on an understanding of my actions and their consequences.

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