If you were sober, would you expect your partner to be?
Recently, The Talk tweeted this exact question, in response to Kristen Bell admitting she vapes weed around her sober husband. Dax Shepard was quick to respond to this question, saying, "That would be like a diabetic expecting their partner to never eat dessert. Get real!"
Comparing the choice to be sober and diabetes is a topic for another day, but this conversation got me wondering - could a college student hold a relationship with someone who was completely sober? As we all know, drinking alcohol and using drugs is a fairly large stereotype among college students. Would holding a relationship with someone who doesn't drink any alcohol or use any drugs even be possible?
I decided to survey college students to find out their thoughts on the topic. The response I received was very surprising. Of those who replied, an outstanding 82.9% said that they WOULD date someone who was completely sober. Compare this to the 17.1% of those who said they wouldn't. If I learned anything from asking this question, it's that college students are a lot more accepting and accommodating to their partner's behavior than I originally realized.
Of those who said yes, quite a few said it was because they are sober themselves.
"Well, I'm 100% sober myself, so I don't see how it's a problem. It's their choice to not consume drugs or alcohol, just as it's my choice to not consume drugs or alcohol. Besides, you don't have to be wasted to have fun and being sober is 100% better and healthier." - Female, 19
"I personally don't drink and I know I have a very addictive personality. Having alcohol around me would be pretty difficult, so I prefer sober partners." - Female, 21
"I've considered quitting drinking altogether and I don't think that makes me not worth being with, so I'd want to extend the same courtesy to someone else." - Female, 22
"Although I find nothing wrong with drinking and would date someone who did drink, I think there is something so wholesome and different about a guy who doesn't drink. As someone who doesn't drink or do drugs, it'd be nice to have someone who also understands that there are so many other ways for us to have fun together without drugs or alcohol." - Female, 19
"I'm recovering from addiction myself and one of my biggest worries with my new partner is that it will be a problem for her that I can't be around alcohol. I think it would take a big weight off if that person was also sober." - Female, 20
Others who said yes made it very clear choosing to be sober wouldn't bother them.
"I appreciate and respect that life choice. Choosing that lifestyle is healthy." - Female, 22
"It's their choice and I can respect it. It would make me happy knowing they aren't making a poor decision due to drugs or alcohol, and they can help me keep in check and not be pressured to drink." - Female, 20
"I am a frequent medical marijuana user, and am dating someone who actually is 100% sober. I'm a person that supports everybody's personal choices, and no matter why they choose to be sober, I support them. I don't think that should be a dealbreaker, and if it is then your priorities are fucked up." - Female, 20
"I've had one too many bad experiences with men who aren't sober, and as I am someone who has dealt with alcoholism myself, I know prefer sobriety." - Female, 24
"This is a positive trait in my opinion. If someone does not need a substance (alcohol, weed, etc.) to enjoy life and be carefree that just shows how comfortable they are with themselves. I also believe it shows a strong character." - Male, 23
"I don't want to date someone who is constantly drunk or always high. I am totally okay with letting your hair down every now and then, but for the most part people should be 100% sober. I want them to be serious sometimes and have goals in life that require them to be serious and buckle down. I feel like if they are drunk or high, they can't do that. So it's really not that hard to date someone who is 100% sober in my opinion." - Female, 21
"One's choice to be sober does not determine their character and ability to have fun and enjoy themselves. I would date my significant other based off their personality and do not need a drinking buddy. Perhaps, someone is unable to drink to health issues or addiction in the past, or perhaps not drinking is their own decision. I am open to my partner living a lifestyle that is best for them!" - Female, 22
"Personally, I'm not a big drinker myself so I don't see it being a problem. I think relationships work best when the two people involved are their own persons. I wouldn't make him drink and he shouldn't prevent me from enjoy my rare daiquiri. The plus side is I would save a lot of money on the tab due to his lack of drinking!" - Female, 21
Although those who said no were in the minority, they had valid reasons why.
"As a college student who frequently drinks alcohol, it'd be hard for me to date someone who didn't drink because that's how my social scene is formed. I think in most cases, my sober partner probably wouldn't be up for a date night at the bar or to accompany me and my friends on a night out, which I know would cause some conflict down the road. I wouldn't say that this is a make or break for me, especially if they're willing to accept my behaviors and accompany me for nights out. I wouldn't judge their choice if they didn't judge mine." - Female, 21
"I would when I'm older, but now as a college student it would be too much of a lifestyle clash." Female, 20
"I would feel like they were judging me whenever I drank and I like to have fun/go out with my significant others." - Female, 20
"I'm just entering the part of my life where I enjoy going out and drinking has become a component of that. I wouldn't want to be with someone who couldn't share that with me." - Female, 21
"Honestly, probably not. I am in college and recently turned 21 and as much as I am not for smoking (or doing any drugs), I love to go out to the bar, play drinking games, and have fun at tailgates. Personally, if I was in a relationship with someone 100% sober I would feel bad or like I was making their sobriety more difficult, etc. Personally, I wouldn't have a problem with their sobriety but I would just in general feel too self-conscious in the relationship. Also, to be honest, my boyfriend and I right now have some of our best sex drunk." - Female, 21