I have a confession for everyone: I drink diet sodas. And you know what? I actually like it. Diet Coke, Diet Fanta, Diet Mt. Dew, any of them—I enjoy them a lot.

For me, there’s nothing more refreshing than coming home from an exhausting day to a nice and cold Diet Coke. Yet, I cannot even confess this without meeting some exaggerated gasp or judgmental sigh of disapproval for not preferring regular sodas, like Coke or Sprite. Why am I all of sudden not regular for drinking diet soda? Why does my choice of beverage deserve such a hostile response? Quite frankly, I am tired of such judgement. And I am especially tired of hearing the same old five reactions I get every time I order a diet soda.

*Shows up to party.* “Hey, there are some sodas in the cooler if you want one.”

wine, beer
Erica Sloan

Being in my early twenties, I attend some parties and barbecues from time to time. I am greeted by friends and get offered to grab a soda from the cooler. But every diet soda drinker knows what “soda” means. It doesn’t mean you get choice of a diet AND a regular drink. It means you get ONE option: regular soda and that is it. There is never any consideration for us diet lovers of the world, and I cannot stand it. I have gotten to the point where I just bring my own supply of drinks to every show. BYOS, eh?

“Want to share a drink?”

Who does not love movie dates? Me. Every time my date and I go to order a drink before the movie, I am faced with the dreaded question of “Want to share a drink?” I cannot say no because then I am making a very awkward and negative impression onto my new beau. But then, I also cannot say “hey, can we get a diet soda?” because I am always met with the following reaction: “EWWW!” So, usually I hide my repulsive taste and just drink whatever regular soda that they order.

“But it tastes like water!”

ice, liquor, beer, alcohol, wine, coffee
Bethany Garcia

Um...no, not at all. I do not know what kind of water you are drinking, but I have never tasted any water that had the same flavor of a diet soda. But okay, I can accept that you do not like how it tastes. However, that means you must accept that I like the taste of diet. I actually prefer it over regular sodas, which I personally find much too syrupy and sweet. The flavor of diet tends to be much smoother, and I love that. 

“Why order a burger with a Diet Coke? Does that not defeat the purpose?”

sandwich
Claire Couron

If the purpose of eating that burger and drinking that soda was to eat healthy, then yeah. Of course. But, if that was the purpose, then I would not be eating junk food in the first place. I eat delicious burgers and refreshing diet sodas because I like the taste, not because I want to be health conscious. So, what difference does my choice of beverage make?

“Aspartame gives you cancer.”

candy
Katie Walsh

This is definitely the biggest and most fair reason of why I should quit drinking diet sodas. I will not deny it in any bit. But, what I will say is that regular sodas are just as bad. According to Authority Nutrition, both regular and diet sodas are “linked to weight gain,” contribute towards “type 2 diabetes and heart disease,” cause a “disaster for dental health,” and create a “higher risk of cancer.” So, instead of preaching that I should quit drinking diet soda because aspartame causes cancer, let's preach to quit soda completely. Because diet or not, soda is awful for you in many ways.

So, I get it people—you do not like me drinking diet sodas. Maybe that is cause of the taste, my health, or whatever other reason you conjure up. But please, do me the favor and just stop telling me those reasons. Just accept my love for diet sodas and let me live my life happily and shameless of my taste buds.