ADVICE: Can I Be Straight-Edge and Still Party Hard?

Every week, New York City’s own party messiah takes your life questions and sets you safely down the right path to a solution in his new weekly advice column in The Village Voice. Read the latest edition of Ask Andrew W.K. below or by clicking HERE.

A full archive of Ask Andrew W.K. can be found HERE.

Need his help? Just send him an email at:

February 11th, 2015

Hi, Andrew

I’ve been dealing with some major and substance abuse problems for a long time, and without going into too much detail, I’ve finally given up and decided to enter a recovery program and go straight edge. The only thing is, it’s really hard for me to imagine my life without drugs and partying. It’s something I’ve done every day for so long and has become my whole life. Leaving that behind is the scariest part of all this. You are an expert on partying. Can I be straight edge and still party hard?

Fear of Not Partying

Dear Fear of Not Partying,

I don’t claim to have the answers to anything — and I’m certainly not a qualified expert on addiction or recovery — but I definitely commend you on your decision to make a new version of your life because it sounds like you really want to. And I appreciate you writing to me about this particular idea of change and partying. When you want to change your life more badly than you don’t want to change your life, you will change your life. And that counts as partying.

I think there’s a common misconception that true partying must always involve drugs and alcohol. In reality, the only thing that true partying must involve is partying. How each of us decides to party within that partying is up to the individual, but true partying doesn’t necessarily require drugs anymore than it necessarily requires skydiving — to each their own. As long as it doesn’t blatantly hinder someone else’s ability to party, all forms of partying are permitted. Alcohol and drugs can be amazing, and when used in a dynamic way, they can offer us genuine life changing insights and experiences. Drugs are not necessary requirements for all, and for some, they may be completely detrimental to reaching true party perfection.

…continue reading