Most people, at some point in their life, refrain
from alcohol. On occasions, refusal of alcohol is for perfectly
clear medical reasons (booze may clash with prescription drugs, or
an operation is impending, or the person is pregnant). At other
times, it is more clearly a case of self-imposed abstinence: this
can range from a few weeks 'clean-living' to a committed
campaign to kick the drink habit altogether.
Whatever the reason, a decision has been made, and must be respected. As a host, you may be confronted with a refusal of drink from your guest. Never question why this is happening; never cajole, or plead, or tease. You may be understandably disappointed that they're not joining in the party fun, but you must never let this show - meet their refusal with good grace, and offer a tempting range of alcohol-free drinks.
If you are the teetotaller (however temporary), you must also mind your manners. Follow these recommendations:
Golden Rules for Teetotallers
- Refuse a drink politely; give an explanation if you think that helps.
- Never act the martyr, miserably cradling your mineral water as the party takes off around you.
- Never proselytise your fellow guests about the benefits of an alcohol-free existence.
- If you are unable to cope with alcohol-induced anarchy - meandering conversations, meaningless arguments, general hilarity- don't go to the party.
If you can endure these antics without a censorious air, remember that you will be worth your weight in gold - the one sober guest at the end of the evening who is able to sort out the increasingly unruly guests, and even drive them safely home.