gAy A: A Queer Sober Podcast

Allow Good Things ft. Davide

September 22, 2022 Steve Bennet-Martin Season 1 Episode 103
gAy A: A Queer Sober Podcast
Allow Good Things ft. Davide
Show Notes Transcript

Steve welcomes Davide to share their experience, strength, and hope with you, along with advice on getting and staying sober.

Thank you for listening. Please join our Patreon family for the post-show, along with more exclusive content at www.Patreon.com/gAyApodcast

Follow Davide on Instagram @daviderialto and follow us while you are at it @gAyApodcast

If you are interested in sharing your story, getting involved with the show, or just saying hi, please e-mail me at gayapodcast@gmail.com

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Steve:

Hi everyone. And welcome to gay a, a podcast about sobriety for the plus community and our allies. I'm your host, Steve Bennett, Martin. I am an alcoholic and I am grateful for all of my listeners. As of this recording, I am for 50 days sober and today we're welcoming a guest to share their experience, wisdom and hope with you. Oh, welcome to the show. Davi day.

Davide:

Thanks for having me.

Steve:

Yes. And why don't you introduce yourself to our listeners? Tell us a little bit more about you.

Davide:

So I'm Italian. I live in London. I'm 36 years old and I'm a risk compliance analyst for a financial firm. And I've been in London for five years of their spending, about nine years in Asia. And I I've never been an alcoholic, but certainly I've abused alcohol in the.

Steve:

Mm. Excellent. And what are some of your favorite hobbies in sobriety?

Davide:

I love working out with my boyfriend. We always go for, well workouts at the gym. We go swimming, we go cycling museums and concerts, and I still go to bars and clubs staying sober. Yeah.

Steve:

Yeah. And so how has life changed? Like why don't we get more into like what it was like when you were drinking before you decided to stop.

Davide:

I think it all came from a place of insecurity because I grew up very insecure at, at first about my sexuality. But then when that was sorted, I was insecure about my. Body image. I grew up with the eating disorders as well. So drinking was giving me that push to be more social, more shameless. I had the worst of it in Kong when a lot of bars were giving up free drinks. A lot of the gay bars. Well, I say a lot about there's really one or two open at a time. It was a small gay scene and I was a promot. So I was drinking easily three to five nights a week. Mm. And that was really when I was younger, I was coping with it, but I was in a constant state of buzzing. And I got to a point where on Sunday nights, after two, three days of nonstop drinking, I would start shaking feeling like I was gonna faint. And I think that might have been withdrawals mm-hmm. So, yeah. And then a couple of years ago during COVID, I moved to Dubai for an ex-boyfriend's. Well, my boyfriend at the time who found the job there, and then I had to move back because I couldn't settle down, find a job. I was spending a lot of money. So I came back to London and I decided to really take care of myself because on top of everything, I was also very upset. That's when I started looking into sobriety, getting sober. I was sober most of last year. I had relapse a couple of times. Yeah. But yeah, it's, it's been

Steve:

going well. Yeah. And tell us more about your recovery. Like, what are the things that you did to keep yourself sober and how did you overcome those relapses?

Davide:

There's I mean, it's a, it's a pattern. So when I started just allowing myself one drink per week. I was still going to the bars because I like being social. I think it's important not to isolate yourself and not to put yourself in a position where you think that. Not drinking. You're not gonna have fun. Mm-hmm so I still go to the bars. I have pins and pins of diet Coke. Mm-hmm club soda. I'm still having fun. I find happiness in small things and seeing my friends, drag queen shows are funny without necessarily having to be drunk and. Yeah. I also a huge motivation for me is fitness, because fitness is much more effective when you're not drinking constantly. And that's, that's being a motivation as well. Yeah.

Steve:

And out of all of those positives, what would you say your favorite part of being sober is? I

Davide:

would've thought that. Not being drunk and shameless and cheerful with everybody, I would not be as popular, but the change that that sobriety has caused to my body and the fact that I found self-confidence in my, in a. Different body image, but also when you have things under control, when, when you're in control of your body of your emotions, when you're naturally confident that comes through and people see it. Yeah, they do. So the best thing is that people have noticed, and I think that's how I met my boyfriend. Mm-hmm my current boyfriend. Excellent.

Steve:

And I know you had mentioned or touched on briefly how, like at first a lot of the drinking was to cope with your sexuality. I mean, how do you feel your sexuality played a role in your drinking?

Davide:

I would say when I was living in Asia well, the Hong Kong gay scene was very small, so the ging was centered Within a few bars and around drinking. So all gay people would get out and drink. There was a free vodka night on Wednesday, so we would all get wasted in that, in that sense, my sexuality plate. A role in alcohol abuse. I wouldn't say it would play a role in London necessarily because English people drink all the time. Gay, straight trans young, old it's, it's a family tradition, everybody drinks mm-hmm If anything, the gays are the ones that set up, you know, sober groups, they actually work out and everything. There's a huge casing. So there's something for everybody.

Steve:

Yeah, that's great. So, I mean, especially now that you still go out to bars and clubs, I mean, how has your place in the L G B T community changed since getting sober? I

Davide:

prefer it because if you have to drink to enjoy a place and, or a show or a group of friends, it means that they're not good enough. I mean, not, they're not, they're not good enough, but you should naturally allow yourself to get bored and. Without intoxicating yourself. So you can go on mm-hmm and people respect that. I have a smaller circle of friends because some friendships were purely based on being a naturally in a natural, good mood together, intoxicated, good moods, but I have more time to focus on them. I do more, I spend more quality time with every.

Steve:

That's excellent. And what are some practices or things you do in your daily life to help keep you sober?

Davide:

Well, as I said, I'm focused on fitness a lot and luckily my boyfriend, he does drink, but it drinks so slowly that it's a fight between himself and the son not to evaporate his brains. Mm-hmm so, yeah, he's he doesn't drink much either, so he is never drunk. We hang out together, it's it it's come naturally at this point. And I don't have to make an effort, a conscious effort to be sober. It's just that I, I have to insist on refusing the drinks when I'm with specific friends who, you know, French or Italian friends who insist for me to just have a glass of wine and enjoy mm-hmm and I'm, I, I would enjoy with a, a can of Coke, you know? Yeah,

Steve:

for sure. And so I know a lot of people do turn to fitness, especially early in their recovery, cuz it helps kind of beat some of the cravings that we get. What does your fitness routine look like?

Davide:

I I used to do a lot of CrossFit, but now I just go to the gym. I have a membership near home and one year work. So I use a lot of my lunch breaks to work out and five days a week, more or less, not a huge amount of time, like less than an hour each time. But the change that's that's, that's made not drinking and always being strong enough to go to the gym and never being hungover to hungover to work out has caused the change together with, you know, not consuming that amount of alcohol that's inflammatory. It, it does really cause you to swell other more than it makes you fat. Yeah. So. Yeah, that was a motivation. And seriously, the confidence that I gained from that is much better than any drink.

Steve:

Excellent. And I know you, you mentioned as well, how, you know, spending time with your boyfriend helps how has dating been sober compared to what it was like before, when you were drinking? It

Davide:

was, I wouldn't say I'm speaking about when I was single. I wouldn't say that The quantity of people I've met has either reduced or increased. It's just that before dating was more chaotic and I would meet guys while we were both drunk and things would happen. And, but these are not, those were not things that would necessarily continue because one of us was not interested. It was just, you know, the euphoria of the moment. Mm-hmm Whereas being sober, being in control and having gained this much confidence has attracted much more quality towards me, like a lot of the guys I've met have become friends, or when I met my boyfriend, you, there was actually a sometime in which we dated and we were sort of courting mm-hmm if you can say that Yeah, it's it blooms from there. It was much more how do you, how do you say, sorry, I messed up

Steve:

no, it's okay. Like, would, would you say it was more like traditional, like in the sense that it's not like boy meets boy, a bar drunk and goes home. It was more like what you see in like the movies where like people date and they, it was more wholesome. Yeah. Yeah. That's real nice. And if you could give one piece of advice to someone who is curious about either getting sober or trying to stay sober, what would it be?

Davide:

It would be that it doesn't matter where whether you. Were drunk yesterday. You're hungover. You're drinking. Now what you do from now on can change everything. Mm-hmm, your path. Doesn't define you relapsing. Doesn't define you if you relapse every now and then everybody does it, the important thing is that you are on a, on a path and you You're confident enough to stick to that path, even though you make mistakes. Mm-hmm and also you are good enough if you, if your alcohol abuse comes from a place of insecurity like mine I would say you are good enough. There are so many people out there walking out in the world with their chin up and their achievements. Their looks are not better than yours, but the whole difference between them and you is in your.

Steve:

Yeah. And especially since I know that, so often times, like, while I was drinking, I would tell myself that I don't need help because I'm not an alcoholic yet. You know, seeing as how you don't identify as an alcoholic, I mean, how do you feel or when do you know the right time to maybe try out sobriety? Is.

Davide:

For me, it's a slippery slope because whenever I relapse, I, it was always having one drink with friends and then having another one and then another one again, and then one day would become two days of binge drinking. Perhaps I was on holiday at a gay prides, you know, so I know that just, just having. It's not for me. And it's not the way to go. Yeah. It's for me, it's, it's always been like that because it's it's sneaky. It it one drink leads to many others and it's not the same for everybody. There are people who can limit their drinking. And so I admire them, but that's not.

Steve:

Yeah. I, I can certainly relate to that. And do you have a favorite quote or lyric or mantra that you try and live by?

Davide:

if you allow better things to come to you, they will. Yeah. Just, just allow them don't hide behind your problems.

Steve:

Yeah. And what, what are some of those better things that you've discovered recently in your life that you're thankful for?

Davide:

I I, I wouldn't say my life has in, has changed dramatically. It's just that I'm more ready to face it. When I've come back from Dubai, I was very upset because I I had to leave my boyfriend there and then we broke up. But the focus I have at work I've been promoted a couple of times. I met new people. I met my, my new boyfriend. We've been together seven months. I met his old family. I'm ready for everything and for everyone I can, I sort of had to relearn confidence while sober, because at the beginning I was paralyzed being social. I would, I didn't know how to speak to people. But now I, I, I pick up on what they're saying. I'm listening more. It's it's much better.

Steve:

That's excellent. And if our listeners wanted to find you, do you have an Instagram, you feel comfortable sharing with everyone?

Davide:

Yes, it's David deto. Okay. Excellent. David is my name Rialto like the bridge.

Steve:

All right. Well, David Day, I will be sure to put that in the show notes. So listeners can just scroll on up and click on over. But thank you. Definitely stick around cuz we're gonna have our post show for our Patreon family in a moment. Okay. But in the meantime, thank you listeners for tuning into another episode of Gaya podcast, you're more than welcome to join our Patreon family, where you get exclusive after shows with every guest every Thursday. Meanwhile, if you're interested in sharing your story or finding me on Instagram, you can find me at gay a podcast. Or email me at gay, a podcast, gmail.com, and be sure to follow us wherever you're listening so you can get new episodes when they come out every Thursday until next time stay sober friends.