Dating & Relationships Health & Fitness Men's Lifestyle

Five Date Night Ideas that Don’t Involve Alcohol

With Former addict, thought leader and Entrepreneur, Nick Mathews

Drinking on a date can help break the ice and make everyone more comfortable, but there are so many alternatives for non-drinkers to still have fun too. My story started a long time ago, and I help others learn to live a life without drugs and alcohol through my work at StillWater Behavioral Health. We focus on teaching healthy coping mechanisms and showing empathy to addicts every step of the way.

1.) Cooking

Trying new recipes is always a fun way to get the brain moving. My wife and I like to get creative with new meals. For example, we might break down the recipe into a very complicated alternative and try to cook it together. You can also sign up for a cooking class at a nearby restaurant. They will show you step by step how to make delicious meals. You can also take baking class if your significant other is a fan of sweets.

2.) Classes

Any sort of class that involves an instructor like pottery or painting is always helpful at taking some of the pressure off. Dance classes can be fun and help bring you closer together as well as develop more trust skills. Some home improvement stores may offer classes where you can learn some new DIY skills.

3.) Get Active

A nice mellow hike or kayak trip, or even some sightseeing is always a great way to spend time together. Use your judgement in regard to difficulty but the natural endorphins from exercise can be great for opening up conversation and building a connection.

4.) Games

From typical board games to virtual reality, there are so many different options. Mystery dinner theaters and escape rooms are exciting choices. These get your mind off the date and keep the atmosphere light. Escape rooms are my favorite!

5.) Music

Any live music event is always great, but this one can be tricky because there are usually people drinking; so be careful! Concerts are stimulating and high energy but a nice calm setting for a coffee house acoustic show can be romantic too.

The truth is that any date can be enjoyable without drinking, but some time, practice, and gaining confidence is what gets you there. Make the focus on building character so that the best version of you is the sober version.

It was nerve racking and uncomfortable for me at first, but after some practice it became a walk in the park (and my wife hasn’t left me yet so I think I’m doing pretty well). I have dedicated my life to providing encouragement, support, and a healthy environment for others to live a sober life and recover from addiction.