There is nothing like getting an award to make you pay attention to the group that is giving it. This was my experience when I was told I was receiving the Emerald Spirits Award from Sober St. Patrick’s Day.
Sober St Patrick’s Day? I had vaguely heard of the group, but now I needed to learn more. What I found surprised and excited me so much that I need to share it with you.
No, It’s Not About Abstinence
Sober St. Patrick’s Day is an international movement with celebrations around the world on March 17, including the one in New York City where I will be given an award for my work in focusing national attention on Children of Alcoholics. Its goal is to return this holiday back to its roots as a family day and move it away from an annual bar crawl or “It’s great to get drunk” day. Its goal is not no drinking; its goal is no drunking. The hope is to make this a happy family day instead of the day so many of us dreaded as children, due to the violence in our families this day represented.
It’s Important to Women
For adults, especially for women, being part of a drunken St. Patrick’s Day presents new concerns:
- Getting drunk makes women more vulnerable to rape. More than one in every six freshmen women is raped during her first year at college while too drunk or drugged to fend off her attacker.
- Most women are raped by someone they know
The effects of rape are devastating, resulting in:
- Depression as women often blame themselves
- Alcohol an drug abuse to try to keep the shame away
Don’t Let Your Toxic Girly Thoughts Rule You on St. Patrick’s Day
Yes, the perpetrators are responsible for their crime, but being drunk makes women vulnerable to this type of malicious creep. One reason why women get drunk on days like St. Patrick’s Day is because they have internalized societal messages—which I have named toxic girly thoughts—that tell them to be desirable they need to engage in all sorts of harmful behaviors. Getting drunk on St. Patrick’s Day is one of those behaviors.
Want to be safe on St. Patrick’s Day and other days as well? Enjoy being Irish, even if it’s only for the day but…. Don’t get drunk!
And if you’re in NYC, come to the Sober St. Patrick’s Day celebration with me at the New York Irish Center. http://www.soberstpatricksday.org/THE-AWARD.html
Remember, you’ll find more ideas for getting rid of your negative self-talk in my two latest books, The Girly Thoughts 10-Day Detox Plan: The Resilient Woman’s Guide to Saying NO to Negative Self-Talk and YES to Personal Power and The Resilient Woman: Mastering The 7 Steps to Personal Power.
Patricia A. O'Gorman, Ph.D., is a psychologist in private practice. She is noted for her work on women, trauma, and substance abuse and for her warm, inspiring, and amusing presentations that make complex issues accessible and even fun. She has served as a consultant to organizations across the country in preventative and clinical strategic planning. Dr. O'Gorman is a cofounder of the National Association for Children of Alcoholics, and she has held positions ranging from director of a rape crisis center to clinical director of a child welfare agency, and director of the division of prevention for the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA). She is a veteran of numerous television appearances, including Good Morning America, Today, and AM Sunday and is the author of eight books including: The Girly Thoughts 10 Day Detox Plan (2014), The Resilient Woman: Mastering the 7 Steps to Personal Power (2013), and Healing Trauma Through Self-Parenting (2012) 12 Steps to Self-Parenting.