How to Feel Feelings: Some Tips for the Newly Sober


So you recently went sober (congrats) and you noticed you are starting to have intense emotions and it’s freaking you out. Or maybe it feels amazing. Or maybe sometimes it feels amazing and sometimes it fucking sucks dingo dick. Relax. This is all normal and to be expected. Your brain is rewiring itself and your body is normalizing. You no longer have the option of grabbing the bottle or smoking a bowl when shit gets hard. You are feeling feelings again.

We all felt mad feelings when we were babies and kids. We were such fucking assholes, but that’s because the things we felt were legit. Your brain is literally going back to the place where it feels what it feels and isn’t affected by substances. It can be scary as hell. Trust me, I know. Here are some tips for dealing with it. Why, what else are you going to do? Have a drink or pop a pill? No. You have to just deal with it now. It’s hard as hell but you knew this wasn’t going to be easy. Try out some of these fun coping activities.

Cry Like a Bitch:  Look, I don’t care if you’re a man, woman, something in between, or something new entirely. Crying. Is. AWESOME. I’m not talking about drunk dialing your ex and telling him to go fuck himself after six shots of Jim Beam that the bartender kept giving you for free. That definitely never actually happened to me, nope! I am talking about crying under the influence of the very core of your being. Try crying over something that has nothing to do with you and how shitty you think your life is. Order a fucked up movie on Netflix and lock yourself in your apartment and cry hard. Try scream-crying. Let it out. It feels amazing, I swear! You will feel amazing. Maybe spend some time surfing a rescue animal shelter’s website and read an animal’s back story (unlikely inter-species friendships get me every time). Or, if you absolutely cannot relate to pain outside of your own, pay for a session with a therapist and talk about your dad or whatever. However, if you cannot relate to the pain of others, that is like, a whole other type of article that I am not qualified to write about, but you might want to see a therapist about that too.

Cum Hard:  Ok, I made that intentionally graphic for attention, but you knew what I mean,t and you know orgasms are awesome! I’m saying have sex or masturbate. A lot. One thing you may have noticed (I know I certainly did) is that your orgasms are way different. If your experience in sobriety has been anything like mine, your orgasms are probably more intense, sex is probably much better, and not just because you can remember it the next day. You are feeling everything. You aren’t numbing your brain and body and you are able to experience every feeling, touch, sensation, completely unhindered. That is super cool! Enjoy it, experiment with it. Allow yourself to be a horny virgin again. It might kind of feel like you are! How rare is it that we get to live that all over again (except now hopefully we are evolved adults and not as much of the fucking idiots we were back then)? Hell yeah! Discover new things you enjoy, rediscover the old things you once liked and maybe don’t like anymore. This is a unique opportunity, so take advantage of it. I convinced myself for many years that I could ONLY have an orgasm if I was high. That turned out to be so incredibly not true. I am always discovering new things I like and that is because I am completely, 100% present during the entire act of sex instead of scrambling my brain, trying to dissect a crazy blur of what actually happened while trying to find my panties and get out because wow, I would not have fucked that dude sober.

Be Less Annoying:  You cannot feel anyone else’s feelings for them, but you can control how you affect them. You do that by QUIETLY (and quietly as in, judgement-free. Don’t be that sober dick telling everyone else how to live) observing the way others around you act and talk when they are drunk or high. Some people won’t be that different, but some people, wow! You will find yourself asking, “Was I that annoying? Did I sound like that? Did I say stuff like that”? It can be quite a humbling and life-changing experience. Pay attention to the emotions you are feeling. Are you irritated? Is your patience low? Do you wish this drunk person would shut up and give you some personal space because they are up in your grill and you can smell AND feel the heat of the tequila from their margarita? ARE THEY ARE ALSO SPITTING WHEN THEY TALK? This is another very unique opportunity to explore and learn because you are completely awake and aware and feeling all your feelings. You can pinpoint the annoying things other people do and check yourself. Together as sober people, I believe we can help make the world a less annoying place.

Borrow $20:  Ask your drunk friends if you can borrow $20. Maybe they won’t remember and then you keep the $20. This is not a real tip.

You now have some good ideas on how to feel your feelings and let your emotions be a useful tool in enjoying a sober lifestyle! I’m not a doctor though, ok, but I have been there and I am still there and am feeling feelings all the fucking time. Like I said, sometimes it’s gonna really suck. You are going to have bad days. REALLY bad days, but when it doesn’t suck, you’ll remember why you made this decision in the first place. I hope you’ll allow yourself to fully feel your brand-new feelings, and cry a lot, and cum hard, and maybe you’ll even be $20 richer.

-Paris Kennedy (NTP Contributor)

Follow Paris on Twitter and Instagram: @ParisKennedy

Catch Paris on “Kitten2Cougar” streaming LIVE every Saturday night at 12AM PST on or check out previous episodes at

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