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The holidays can be a particularly challenging time for people in recovery or those testing out a sober lifestyle. Many of the get-togethers during this time of year involve gathering ‘round the bar, from the night before Thanksgiving — widely regarded as the “biggest drinking night of the year” — to New Year’s Eve.

Considering this, it’s important to offer extra support and care to your temperate friends during these especially challenging months. One of the best ways to do that is to give Christmas gifts that help support their sobriety and make abstaining extra-fun.

A Six-Pack of Grüvi Non-Alcoholic Craft Beer

Whether it’s watching a football game or visiting friends in from out of town, beer seems to be a big part of winter socialization. Luckily, there are all sorts of amazing non-alcoholic craft beer options on the market these days to help keep the brew around minus the alcohol. Go for a hearty non-alcoholic dark beer or a refreshing weisse beer with all the flavor sans the ABV (and the hangover).

A Mocktail Kit for a Delicious Alcohol-Free Drink

If your friend is more of a spirit sipper than a beer chugger, make their holiday with a non-alcoholic drink kit featuring all the ingredients required for a delicious mocktail.

From spicy, seasonal favorites like Prosecco Cider Punch to vibrant, wintery refreshers like Rosé Paloma, there’s no shortage of holiday mocktail recipes out there. Grab all your ingredients and put them together in a cute seasonal gift box or basket for a thoughtful and delicious holiday gift. Don’t forget the seasonal garnishes, such as cinnamon, rosemary or dried citrus slices.

Top-Shelf Mock Champagne for Your New Year’s Toast

Getting together to celebrate the New Year? Don’t forget to bring along a bottle of high-end alcohol-free bubbly.

Skip the sparkling grape juice from the grocery store this year, because there are tons of craft options out there that’ll make you feel like you’re sipping the finest French imports, all without the dreaded New Year’s Day headache.

Gift Cards to Sober Activities

Regardless whether your friend is in an active recovery program or simply trying to cut back on their consumption, one of the best ways to achieve success is to stay distracted with alcohol-free activities.

Perhaps they’ve channeled their extra energy into fitness, art or music. Try to determine how they best distract themselves from the temptation of drinking and get them a gift card to support it.

Some Fancy Coffee Accoutrements

There’s no denying that caffeine is addictive in its own right. Since it’s on the whole much safer than alcohol, though, coffee is an undeniable favorite of the sober community. In fact, studies show that over 88 percent of people in recovery drink coffee and almost a third drink more than four cups per day.

Why, you ask? Many former alcohol-drinkers enjoy the elaborate ceremony of cocktail preparation or the scientific process of fermenting hops or grapes. Coffee has a similarly enthusiastic community of process-obsessed drinkers, so it serves as a much healthier stand-in (in moderation, of course). If your sober friend is a big fan of java, set them up with some top-quality beans or gear, such as a burr grinder or milk frother.

A Sobriety Milestone Keepsake

Remember that a sober friend’s biggest celebration may not be holidays at all, but their sobriety milestones. Don’t forget to celebrate the big benchmarks with them, whether it is a week, a month or a decade.

To honor each amazing triumph, give the gift of a commemorative necklace, keychain or bracelet marking their accomplishment. If they are in a traditional recovery program such as AA, give them a coin holder to display their sobriety coins, chips and medallions. You can find some awesome and thoughtful milestone keepsakes with personalization options on Etsy.

A Sobriety Journal for Keeping Track of Progress

A sobriety or wellness journal is a wonderful way to track progress and take note of how you are feeling each day in recovery. Choose a journal with some inspirational quotes or tips throughout the pages to help encourage your friend or loved one to stay on track and keep recording every thought.

Gifts to Support Their Hobbies

If you’re looking for the most thoughtful gift for anyone on your list — sober or not — pay attention to how they spend their free time.

Whether it’s playing board games, watching sports, woodworking, cooking, painting or working in the yard, it’s always a great idea to give presents that support your friend’s healthy hobbies. Ask a loved one or browse online communities to figure out some of the most popular presents within that hobby subculture.

Inspirational Books by Sober Writers

Your alcohol abstinent loved one may need inspiration and strength to keep their progress going. Consider equipping them with some inspiring books written by sober authors or counselors. There’s an entire genre of this type of writing known as “quit lit” to help those in recovery stay clean.

Some popular titles include Quit Like a Woman: The Radical Choice to Not Drink in a Culture Obsessed with Alcohol by Holly Whitaker, The Unexpected Joy of Being Sober by Catherine Gray and Recovery: Freedom from Our Addictions by Russell Brand. There are also many excellent mocktail cookbooks out there for the sober friend who loves to whip up an impressive ABV-free beverage at home.

Wrap Everything in Love and Support

In addition to the fun presents listed above, make sure to offer up plenty of emotional support to your sober pals throughout the year.

Doing things like hosting alcohol-free gatherings or showing up with a six-pack of non-alcoholic beer can really help send the message that you support your friend’s sobriety in every way. As always, be sure to offer up an ear and encourage them to share their challenges and triggers with you each day.

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