Navigating the Rhode Island Waters of Drugs and Alcohol
There are many reasons why gay men choose to use drugs and alcohol in social settings or during sex. Although many substances, including alcohol, can be used safely, there are also risks. Making informed choices about alcohol and drug use is a key way to protect yourself and keep your partners safe. Browse this page for tips to stay safe.
What Every Guy Should Know – Three Tips
1. Avoid Mixing
Many people mix various substances over the course of a night, either to increase or prolong the “buzz” or counteract another drug’s effects. Take extra caution when mixing alcohol and drugs, since doing so increases the risk of dangerous events, including black-outs or overdose.
2. Be prepared
Going out for a night of fun? Be prepared!
- Always have a good meal and drink lots of water before going to the bar.
- Bring a condom with you and have a stash of condoms at home. Need condoms? Contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Driving to the bar? Ask a sober friend to help you find a taxi, take your keys, or drive you home.
3. Stick with friends
Avoid using alcohol and drugs alone. If you’re going to use drugs, especially for the first time, make sure you’re around close friends who you can trust.
Your Questions Answered
Do I have a drug or alcohol problem?
Worried about your alcohol use? Here is a short quiz as a screen for potentially hazardous or harmful drinking. Take the quiz here.
How can I cut down on drinking?
Pace yourself. Sip slowly so that you have no more than one alcoholic drink per hour. Have “drink spacers”—make every other drink a non-alcoholic one, such as water, soda, or juice. Note that it takes about 2 hours for the adult body to completely break down a single drink. The National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism has some great tips and other resources to help stay within lower-risk drinking limits.
Where can I go to get help for drug/alcohol use in Rhode Island?
- Brothers in Sobriety, Community Church of Prov., Wayland & Lloyd Aves., Providence Tuesdays at 7:30 PM (men’s group only)
- Gay Al-Anon, Anchor Recovery Center, 249 Main St, Pawtucket, RI Saturdays at 7:30 PM (both men and women) for info on all groups, call Central Services at 401-438-8860
- Alcohol/Drug Helpline. RI Council on Alcoholism & Drug Dependence, 24-hr., (866) 252-3784.
- AIDS Care Ocean provides a needle exchange program and other resources for men.