Are you making BIG plans for St. Patrick’s Day? Consider making this St. Patrick’s Day a sober one—for your sake.
Pub Crawl, Anyone?
St. Patrick’s Day used to be a day for families to celebrate the best in Irish culture. This included everything from proudly marching in a local parade to the “wearing of the green” to buttons that proclaimed “Kiss Me, I’m Irish.”. It was a day of fun, laugher, even silliness, where toddlers could be seen perched on their fathers’ shoulders to watch a marching band, and teens and their parents wore clothes that weren’t the height of fashion but were worn because they were green.
Today, you’ll still find the parades and the wearing of the green, but added to this mix is the pub crawl, complete with maps posted on social media sites of which bars to hit in which order; the goal is to go from bar to bar getting as drunk as possible. Men and women can be seen trouping along in a group drunk, laughing, throwing up, stumbling, kissing strangers, being groped, being culled out of their group to head off with a stranger, and having a grand old time.
ARE they having a grand old time?
Ask yourself if this how you want to spend your St. Patrick’s Day.
Don’t Let Your Girly Thoughts Drive You to Drink
There is so much pressure to go along with the crowd, to be part of things with your friends, even things that may not be the best for you. One reason why women get drunk on days like St. Patrick’s Day is because they have internalized toxic societal messages—which I have named 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.
Being part of a drunken St. Patrick’s Day can be dangerous:
- Binge drinking, defined for women as 4+ drinks in two hours, leads to an increase in car accidents.
- Hangovers, and the accompanying eating to soak up the booze can lead to weight gain. One pub logged a 231% increase in orders for mac and cheese last year.
- 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.
Many women have had the experience of waking up after a night of partying and trying to figure out who they are sleeping next to. “Your name again is …?” Not a fun way to begin a relationship for either of you.
Doesn’t sound very merry, does it? Want to have a memorable sexual encounter on St. Patrick’s Day?
How About Going on the Wild Side—and Going Sober
Yes, you can still have a great time while being in control of your body and keeping yourself safe. Check out a Sober St. Patrick Day celebration in a location near you. Here’s their website: http://www.soberstpatricksday.org. I’ll be at the New York City party and look forward to seeing you there !
Patricia O’Gorman, PhD, speaker, a psychologist in upstate New York, and the author of nine books, including The Girly Thoughts 10 Day Detox Plan and The Resilient Woman: Mastering the 7 Steps to Personal Power She is a regular blogger at The Powerful Woman and CounselorMagazine.com. Learn more at patriciaogorman.com.
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.