Today is 4/20. I already tweeted this is one of the most annoying days of the year for me. This is because I am straightedge.
Now, I’m not militant. I do not have any X’s tattooed on me. I take Advil when I have a bad headache. I drink lattes in the morning. I’m also not vegan or vegetarian. I’m not a Minor Threat fan. I’m not Christian. So what is straightedge to me? I do not drink, smoke, or do any sort of recreational drug. I also don’t sleep around. If we have learned anything from the media lately, it is that sex is addictive as well.
I also don’t care (for the most part) what my friends do. As long as it is nothing dangerous, I do not lecture or push my personal lifestyle choice on anyone else. If you’re going to drive home drunk or shoot up, yeah you better believe I’m not OK with that. But other than the obviously bad, I believe it is a personal choice. Rather than be a pain in the ass, I’m supportive. I respect other people’s choices, as I would like them to respect mine.
Yes, people who are annoying drunks annoy me. But that is true of most people right? Most have that one friend who really doesn’t know their limits and makes an ass out of himself or herself. I just have less tolerance for people who can’t hold their liquor. People who obsess over drinking or smoking weed also annoy me, like it is the ONLY thing they have going on in their lives or they NEED it to have a good time.
That being said, I’m always there to give someone a ride home if they need one.
I often get asked the following questions: Why are you straightedge? Why haven’t you tried anything? Don’t you feel like you are missing out? Many people cannot wrap their heads around it. Even more confusing is that I have never not been straightedge. Never tried anything. I feel like a unicorn.
Many people don’t believe me due to my involvement in the music scene and the fact that I go to bars and parties. What else am I going to do?! I’m almost 27 years old; I don’t really have many other options for socializing outside of that.Â Is it easy? No, it is not easy. Out of everything, I think not drinking is the hardest. There are many people who don’t smoke or do drugs, not very many that don’t drink at least socially. Do I feel like I’m missing out? No, I don’t. But it will always be something that keeps me on the outside.
So why do it? Why not just be normal like most people and indulge every once in a while? No harm in a casual drink with friends right? Well, no. But it is not for me. I get asked pretty much every time I go out why I have made this life choice. I decided to post my top 5 reasons:
I have no desire to alter my reality- I really have no interest in it at all. I’m fine with my perception of things. I don’t need to take the edge off of life. I don’t need a way to let loose. Thus, I have no interest in it.
I have no idea how it would effect me and I’m not all right with that- I do not react well to mind-altering substances. How do I know this? Well the last time I had surgery they gave me Valium before to calm me down and it didn’t work. Just made my limbs heavy. Then right before I went under, the sedative they gave me only kind of worked. Again, I couldn’t move, but I was well aware of what was going on. It was like being trapped in my own body, which is pretty terrifying. I also have problems with things like cough medicine, Nyquil, and painkillers. All of them, which should be downers, make me feel like I’m going to have a heart attack. Again, scary. So who knows what would happen if I tried anything else?
My stomach hates me for much less- This really only applies to drinking, but my stomach is not always the best due to ulcers in the past so I’m 98% sure it wouldn’t like alcohol. I couldn’t even drink coffee for years. Even now, I can only have so much before I don’t feel too well. If I got drunk, I would probably puke, which I have no done since the 5th grade (knock on wood).
I’m almost positive it would be a bad idea- If you know me, you know I don’t need anything to have fun. I’m convinced I’d either be am emotional wreck, try to fight someone, or be so obnoxious I would get left wherever I was. I’m capable of all these things sober, but at least I can control it.
I take pride in being edge- It is a hard thing to do and I’m proud of myself for never giving in. I like that it makes my mom proud of me. I like that it is part of the reason I have never been in any real trouble. It might seem lame that it is a point of pride for me, but I don’t really care. It has become a part of who I am.
I am totally open to any other questions about. Please feel free to ask. And for those celebrating 4/20, be safe.