Do I Have To Drink Alcohol To Be In a Fraternity?

This question was submitted by one of our readers. If you have a question you want me to answer go here to submit it: Fraternity Advice.


What do you think about men who don’t drink? I’m looking at one fraternity right now who don’t appear to be wild about it. I’m fine around drinking, I just choose not to. Is there a place in Greek Life for the dry guy?

Answer: Do I Have To Drink Alcohol To Be In a Fraternity?

A good friend of mine rushed my fraternity.  He didn’t drink.  He had the same concerns as the ones above.

During rush, no one made a big deal of it.  He asked questions about it, but no one really seemed to care.  He realized it wasn’t an issue to us, and he joined.

We would quickly learn that this was actually an awesome thing for the rest of us.  This brother was a regular with the party guys, and he never minded driving.  We always had a safe ride home.

The bigger point is he always hung out, and was a damn good brother.  His not drinking had no negative impact on him being a brother, and if anything it had a positive one.  We liked him for who he was, and didn’t pay any attention to the drinking issue.

It sounds like you are going through fraternity recruitment and have encountered some immature brothers.  Be sure one or two juvenile guys don’t spoil your opinion of the entire chapter.  Some of the younger guys often are misguided, and may not be good representatives of the entire chapter.

Chances are the guys are level headed, and really don’t care if you drink or not.

If it seems like the fraternity is making too big a deal of you not drinking, go find another fraternity.  The last thing you want is to be part of a chapter that pressures you to do things you don’t want to do.

To answer your question – there is a place for the dry guy in Greek Life.  Actually, there are lots of places.  You just have to find the one where you fit best.  Good luck.

This question was submitted by one of our readers. If you have a question you want me to answer go here to submit it: Fraternity Advice.

To learn more, check out our most in-depth article on fraternity recruitment: The Complete Guide to Fraternity Recruitment.

One thought on “Is There a Place for the Dry Guy in Greek Life?

  1. Rush is difficult. Most freshmen show up looking for the party. They don’t remotely understand what fraternities actually are or what they have to offer. Fraternities know they have to sell their social side. They might try to show off other aspects too, but if they don’t sell social then they’re out of business. That’s a fake front. Behind that curtain, they really are evaluating character and beliefs. They are looking at a rushee’s potential. Social really is a small part of who they are and the brotherhood they share. So, for a rushee who doesn’t drink it might be difficult to dig past the canned sales pitch to see what’s underneath, but it’s worth the investigation.

    While I have a hard time believing this is true, I’ve seen national stats that say 20% of fraternity members don’t drink at all. I don’t know if they’re all going to some uber conservative private christian school somewhere or something, but you do come across these guys more than you would think. I would say if you handle it like the example Pat gave, a guy that fully participates in the party but just happens not to drink, then you’ll be happily accepted. If you don’t come to parties or you bring everyone down while you’re there then that’s not so good. I would also say it’s not right for you to be the all time DD. No one wants to sign on for that. It’s good that you don’t drink and help out from time to time, but there’s a rotation for a reason.

    Anyway, good luck. I’m sure you’ll find a good fit. In fact, by not being so obsessed with the social aspects, you’ll probably pay more attention to the stuff that actually means something and find yourself a better fit than a lot of people going through rush.

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