General Question

8lightminutesaway's avatar

A gift for someone who is 1 year sober?

Asked by 8lightminutesaway (1416points) September 6th, 2008

Someone very close to me is going to reach one year of sobriety soon, and I want to get him something, or show how proud I am of him. I want to be able to show him that I think he is an incredible person as well. Any gift ideas? He’s in his 20’s, and he’s very stylish with clothes in a good way (he doesn’t just follow trends). I thought about getting him some sort of necklace with a meaningful pendant or something. Any ideas are appreciated!

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57 Answers

gailcalled's avatar

Why not go shopping with him? Picking out jewelry for someone can be risky. But that is a really loving and thoughtful gesture. And what about taking him out for a meal with several close friends, as well?

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marinelife's avatar

@aanuszek1, anthony 81212 & AC Soooo cheap and unfunny.

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marinelife's avatar

If you know his taste in jewelry, you might try something from here. I know Seattle has 12 Step gifts at retail stores so I suspect other major cities do as well.

buster's avatar

If they don’t have a copy of the “Big Book” get them a copy of that. Its the bible of Alcoholics Anonymous. Also you can get them a plaque or something with the serenity prayer on it.

God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change
The courage to change the things I can
And the wisdom to know the difference

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rss's avatar

Congratulations to your friend! I second gail that picking out jewelry can be very difficult unless you know them extremely well. I think having a dinner in with friends might be even better that taking them out (if you cook? or a potluck with all the people who have been supportive). This way you can bring favorite dishes and have some sparkling cider on hand for celebrating. :)

8lightminutesaway's avatar

@buster, he’s got the book. he’s been great about meetings, and is actually a staff member at a younger kids drug meeting too, which I think is awesome as hell. Plaque is a good idea tho

shilolo's avatar

A gift card for a coffee house? I’ve never been to an AA meeting, but I’ve heard they drink a lot of coffee.

buster's avatar

Sobreity is a serious thing to some people. It can be the choice between death and life for some people. Some of you guys are assholes.

8lightminutesaway's avatar

just to clear up, he’s sober from oxycontin not alcohol :)
goes to AA meetings tho

richardhenry's avatar

[Fluther Moderator:] Let’s keep this sensible, you bunch of farm animals. (Seriously though, there’s no need for the offensive, clich├ęd and obvious jokes.)

buster's avatar

All kinds of addicts attend A.A. as well as there support team.

8lightminutesaway's avatar

I know, but I’m not sure everyone knows that.

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greylady's avatar

I don’t know where this person lives, but if it is a house with a yard, maybe a young tree would be nice. Each year you (both) can watch how it grows as a reminder of the progress of overcoming the addiction.

richardhenry's avatar

[Fluther Moderator:] Please direct complaints to the admins using the contact link at the top of the website. I also request that you read the guidelines before taking part further, it isn’t fair to splatter jokes throughout the question without actually participating and making any suggestions, especially since the jokes are obvious and uninteresting. I hope you understand. Let’s get this discussion back on track now.

AstroChuck's avatar

I can only imagine what people must think I’ve been writing. I see no need for the last few postings to be removed. But I’m pretty certain that this one will be too as it’s criticizing the moderator’s over-zealousness.
What joke, other than the early one?

richardhenry's avatar

[Fluther Moderator:] “A beer”, “get him on crack”, and then further discussion about those jokes. Feel free to make a separate discussion about our moderating techniques (where your criticism is on topic and will not be removed), but not here. Again, I hope you understand.

breedmitch's avatar

Fighting addiction can be stressful. How about several gift coupons to a spa or massage therapist. That way when things get too stressful, he can get a massage instead of taking a pill.

AstroChuck's avatar

The “crack” was the early comment that i mentioned and was removed. My subsequent posts weren’t anything that should have been removed, though. But no hard feelings, RH. After all, you’re from the nation that brought the world The Beatles.

Now, to be more productive. How about getting some of his close friends together for a night out to celebrate? A nice meal, a show, whatever. If alcohol isn’t the issue perhaps go clubbing as well.

shadling21's avatar

Yikes… aanuszek1 and AC are apparently troublemakers. Fight the power! Just kidding. Don’t punish me.

ON TOPIC! I like breed’s suggestion. Plus, if he’s a stylish young dood, he may enjoy a manicure/pedicure. I’ve heard they’re a guilty pleasure for some guys.

aanuszek1's avatar

Wait!?! You removed my actually thought out, sincere apology? Dang! I don’t even think that “a beer” is an insulting/stupid answer especially if they weren’t addicted to alcohol.

On a more productive note, I think a suprise party would be cool with his friends and family unless he is shy/uncomfortable about it. Otherwise, if they’re pumped about making it a year, I think it would be great.

richardhenry's avatar

[Fluther Moderator:] You consider ”@Marina I couldn’t help it” to be a well thought out apology? I disagree. Send me a comment or create a question if you feel this warrants some sort of debate. This discussion ends here.

richardhenry's avatar

On another note, I second your surprise party suggestion.

shadling21's avatar

Someone please create another discussion for that. I will follow it to the ends of the earth.


I think this is a strange question to begin with. Immediately after seeing it, I thought of alcohol. Why couldn’t it have been worded “gift for a 20-year-old male with a sense of style”? Is the occasion the important part? Because most of these gift suggestions are very generic and could be given to any 20-year-old male with sense of style, regardless of whether it’s their birthday, their graduation, their baptism, etc.

Do you see where I am going with this?

Not to say that it isn’t a good question. I’m just wondering how much importance is being placed on the occasion itself.

sarapnsc's avatar

How about a great big hug and saying…“I am so proud of you, and here is to another , successful, sober year to come.” Have a barbecue or small gathering and rejoice.
Why must it be for something materialistic?

marinelife's avatar

@shadling21 The year of sobriety is a huge accomplishment. Addiction is a life-eating problem. It is well worth celebrating and marking the occasion.

Cafepress has some things too.

I know your friend will be glad of your support.

shadling21's avatar

@marina – I’m not saying it isn’t important.

@all – Actually, ignore my last post. It’ll probably just confuse people, since I hadn’t actually worked out what I was going to say before I started saying it.

8lightminutesaway's avatar

@shadling, well I wanted the gift to reflect the occasion, because its very significant. I was just listing some of his qualities to help with gift ideas.

@sarapnsc, I’m going for something material for a few reasons. First, I don’t live near him anymore so I’m not sure if I’ll actually be able to see him that day. Second, I want him to be able to look at it later when I’m not there, and know that I always support him.

Thanks marina, buster, and others for understanding the gravity of a year of sobriety and for your suggestions. I’ll cook him something if I’m in town, thats a good idea. otherwise, I’ll keep lookin for some nice jewelry, possibly engrave the serenity prayer too, or go with the plaque idea. thanks guys!

augustlan's avatar

Give him a clock, watch or hourglass (engraved) to signify the passing of time.

shadling21's avatar

Excellent idea, augustlan. Functional, aesthetically pleasing, considerate…

Thanks for clearing that up, 8lightminutes.

loser's avatar

You could order a 1 year soberiety token from Hazelton. Maybe even have it engraved?

sarapnsc's avatar


JackAdams's avatar

As an AA participant (38 years of sobriety for me, since 1970), I remember when I passed my first year of sobriety in 1971.

I was given a birthday cake with a single candle on it, to acknowledge my re-birth as a sober adult.

Fortunately, it was NOT a Rum Cake.

girlofscience's avatar

Ugh. There are few things I detest more than AA.

augustlan's avatar

@GoS: Why?

girlofscience's avatar

@augustian: I could write a dissertation on my disagreement with the organization and its principles, but I’ll just outline a few brief reasons for you.

- It has a very cult-like feel and is super, super creepy.
– It brainwashes people.
– It claims not to be “religious” at all, but totally relies on calling on a “higher power” for help.
– It is simply a new addiction to replace an old addiction. AA freaks get addicted to those fucking meetings. A friend of mine knew a guy who went 3 times a day, every day!!!
– It acts like you can never ever have a drink again, which I totally don’t agree with. Alcoholics CAN learn to drink in moderation. I don’t believe people have conquered an addiction if they are afraid to touch their previous addiction! Truly conquering an addiction means that you’re able to indulge in moderation without falling back into the pattern.

I went to one AA meeting and was literally sick to my stomach the entire time. I was totally weirded out by every aspect of it. What a bunch of freaks. I felt dirty for a long time after I left that place. It took like 80 showers before I felt like a human again.

I started searching the internet for other people who shared my opinion and found an abundance. One woman said, “I used to complain about my husband being an alcoholic. Now that he’s a preachy 12-step nutcase obsessed with meetings, I wish I’d never complained. I’d much prefer the drunkenness to this fucking nonsense.”

JackAdams's avatar

@girlofscience: You are probably right about AA, from your own experiences and perspectives.

I had a different experience with them, and I believe they probably saved my life, and I have 37 years of sobriety now, to show for it.

I broke some of the rules in the organization.

For example, my mentor was a FEMALE, and that was a definite no-no, but I didn’t care. I would not “buddy up” to a male.

And, you are right if you believe that some guys go to the AA meetings to get laid.

That’s why many in Arkansas go to family reunions. (JOKING!!!!!)

augustlan's avatar

@GoS: Thanks. I don’t have any experience with the organization, but do know people who found their answers there. I’m sure it’s not for everybody. Now, about that addiction thing…I know several former smokers who can not have even one cigarette without reverting to being a full-fledged smoker in very short order, so I’m not sure I agree with your point of view on that.

8lightminutesaway's avatar

Why are you calling people who go to AA meetings freaks? If AA didn’t work for you, then fine, leave it that, clearly it works for some people. geez.
replacing a drug addiction with a “meeting addiction” would seem to be the safer alternative dont you think?

JackAdams's avatar

@augustlan: I tend to agree with you. Recovered Alcoholics should NEVER drink again, IMHO.

I am “a sip away, from a case a day,” and if I started smoking again, I would be “a puff away, from a pack-a-day.”

flameboi's avatar

a timepiece, in the note you can write something like.
One day at the time…

Knotmyday's avatar


The coolest jewelry in the world is made by Leslie Homan of Femme Metale. Her jewelry for men is marketed under the name “Heavy Metalwerks,” but for some reason the site is dead. E-mail her for a list of items.

Good luck- and congratulations to your friend.

Cat4thCB's avatar

In response to the actual question:

i’d try to stay away from public displays like a party. he may have told only a select few about his addiction and would rather not discuss it over and over again all night with 40 different people.

one year is a short period of time to be clean and sober and he might not be ready to ‘celebrate’ this anniversary with a lot of gifts and slaps on the back, even from one person.

take him aside, shake his hand, look him in the eye, and tell him that you’re proud of him.

omfgTALIjustIMDu's avatar

@girlofscience, AA gave me my dad back.

Macaulay's avatar

I was in your friend’s position. My best friends painted me a picture. My dad gave me a drug abuse book. I don’t talk to my dad because of this. Go with a painting, loving letter, or baked cookies. This is a time for a personal, caring, and homemade gift.

mxilla's avatar

Coffee and cigarettes. And chocolate.

Irishmar's avatar

Well do not take them to a barenaked ladies concert and let them go have a ciagerette outside and comeback high on extacy because some wine was laced in the limo. WHAT A NIGHTMARE.

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