For those who haven’t heard of the term Social Hangover, it is basically a ‘hangover’-like feeling caused by over-socialising. Sometimes it’s called an Introvert Hangover because it commonly affects us introverts, as it takes more of our energy when it comes to socialising/being in a highly social environment than it would for an extrovert.
I only came across this term recently. This article on Introvert Dear explains it quite well.
The previous night I attended a big all-day-and-night social event. It involved a lot of people I didn’t know. I fully expected to be ‘hungover’ from too much social stimulation – for me, that means extreme tiredness for most of the next day whilst I recharge my batteries. Then usually back to normal the day after.
The time spent during a social hangover is time I spend analysing the event which caused it. What did I do, what could I have done differently, was I being social enough, etc etc etc… and for last night, I think my main one was this:
What’s behind my aversion to alcohol? I was offered sips of two different drinks that night. Despite encouragement from others, I’ve never been an alcohol drinker simply because I wasn’t interested. Any drinks I have tried, I didn’t really like the taste of. Why drink something that didn’t taste nice? But that night, the two little sips I did try… actually tasted alright. But it was because I couldn’t really taste the alcohol (granted, I took the tiniest sips in the world). So what’s the point in adding the alcohol into the drink if I couldn’t taste it? I’m guessing it’s the alcohol part which I dislike the taste of. Is it possible for this drink to be made without alcohol but still taste the same? If so, maybe I could drink that. But then it isn’t alcohol… so what’s the point of the alcohol in the first place?
Maybe it’s like when you cook with wine. It enhances the taste of the food without putting any alcohol taste in there. So maybe people enjoy alcoholic beverages in the same way.
I wonder if it’s because I associate alcohol with people getting absurdly drunk. Being out with drunk people before, I can see the effects it has on the drinker – it loosens them up, makes them feel less socially-inhibited. So many people do it and they have a good time from it which is fair enough.
After some thinking, I came to the realisation. I think my aversion to alcohol stems from my aversion of doing things because society says so. “This is what people do, everyone does it.”
But I have experiences from growing up where I’ve tried following the trend to fit in with the ‘popular.’ And popular rejected me anyway. No matter how hard I followed the popular trends, I still didn’t fit in. So over time, I think I developed an aversion to anything ‘popular’ or ‘trendy’. And that includes drinking alcohol.
Having said all that, I probably still won’t get into drinking because… still not that interested. But I suppose I wouldn’t mind trying some more sips just to see what the taste is like. But only like a sample-size. Not sure I’d manage a full glass, in the same way I prefer tiny-portion desserts over a massive slice of cake because I don’t have much of a sweet tooth 🙂
I’ve never had a real hangover (caused by drinking) but I would imagine it involve tiredness, sluggishness, and a general feeling of “why did I drink so much last night?” My social hangovers are similar (“why did I socialise so much last night?”). In truth, the event last night was really fun and I enjoyed it – it just takes a lot out of me. And apparently causes a social hangover leading to some very deep life thoughts. 🙂