From the January 2013 magazine.

January 2013: Party Time

How a sober teen got through graduations, dances, weddings and deaths

I was 15 when I got sober in 1988. Back then, I had many reservations about whether I could stay sober though birthdays, graduations, weddings, break-ups, deaths, and many other events that could have been reasons to take a drink to celebrate or mourn.

The fact is that before God gave me the strength to avoid getting loaded in 1988, I was miserable and drinking was no longer the solution. Although it took a couple of years to work all Twelve Steps, my sponsor gave me an assignment to develop a plan of action when certain events occurred so that I could not find a reason to take that first drink. During the first couple of years sober, I had to avoid situations with alcohol at all costs because I was not spiritually fit. Since I was underage, there were many places where I could not drink, which made it easier, but I also had to get rid of all my friends who applied peer pressure.

-- Shannon D.

Anchorage, Alaska

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