Question: How do you define social drinking? Answer: Social drinking may be that drink or two that soften the harsh events of the day or release one to relaxed sociability or just allow you to see the humor of it all. How many drinks do social drinkers drink? It probably varies. Whatever they do, I can say with certainty that social drinkers do not chase after good feelings by drinking more and more until they lose control. To social drinkers, alcohol is not important. Some wise person said, "If you have to drink to be social, that's not social drinking." "Sober Days" ran in the Palm Springs daily newspaper, the Desert Sun, for several years in the 1990s-2000s. The popular Q&A column was written by Dr. James West, the Betty Ford Center’s first medical director. He remained with the Betty Ford Center until 2007, when he retired at age 93.