I am a 36 year old woman - and I've been struggling with alcohol my whole life. I have got myself into a place where I feel like I don't have the 'will power' to change it. But it really impacting all areas of my life. I am lucky to have a supportive husband, but even he is finding it incredibly tricky to manage and support me through now. I really want to live a completely alcohol-free life and would appreciate all the support and guidance I can get. Thanks in advance.
Today will be my first day sober. I don’t think I have ever taken it this seriously before. But I genuinely believe my husband will leave me if I don’t – and I absolutely HATE who I am when I am drinking. Last night started well, as it usually does. Friends, food, conversation. But I just don’t have an off switch sometimes. I didn’t eat much, drank SO much wine and by the time midnight rolled around I was in tears, called my Dad and was rude to him (although don’t even remember calling him) and my husband told me this morning that I was saying I wanted to hurt myself. It’s rock bottom really. Although I have been here many times before. It does feel different this time though. I don’t think I have ever felt it was that bad a problem. But I can see now that it really is and I don’t want to live with the guilt, embarrassment and anxiety anymore. I’m worried about how I will manage this. Right now, it just feels super hard and I have a lifetime of drinking memories that are going to be hard to shake and forgive myself for. I think that is why I let myself off the hook and haven’t taken it seriously before. Because I just class myself as a ‘drinker’ and that I don’t have the will power to change this cycle. I guess I just have to start somewhere and make it my most pressing goal in life!
Hey there 😊 sounds as though you’re in the right place. Take it easy on yourself gently does it. Baby steps incremental progress new memories. I wouldn’t go back to drinking if you paid me, my life has improved in so many ways and Im only a month shy of two years, so I guess I’m trying to say it can be done and it is worth it on every level
Hi clouisec … it’s a tough place to be but you are at the start of an exciting change in your life. Believe me, things can only get better from here!
Now listen, you need a plan. How are you going to get through these early, difficult days? Nice snacks, yummy alcohol free (AF) drinks, a friend to call, check in here every day, encouraging books to read, lots of enjoyable activities in a list so you can look at it and pick one when you’re having cravings or feeling bad…
I always say if you don’t have a plan, that’s a plan to drink.
Hi @clouisec ….. come and join us ……I’m just starting out and totally hear you as I walk the same path of hating myself for my terrible drinking choices and inability to know when to stop …… a big warm welcome aboard x
Hi @clouisec I understand every word of what you say here and feel for you… been there, done that, bought the tee-shirt, made a mess of it and had to buy another one! It is all so familiar. For years I was on a merry-go-round of getting more drunk often that I wanted to, saying and doing things I didn’t want to, determining that I wouldn’t drink as much next time, then doing it again all over again. I’d stop drinking after some appalling incident but then within two or three days it would be “you’ve done well, you deserve a drink!”… and I’d be off the rails again. Eventually it came to the point that it just had to stop. I couldn’t even tell you precisely WHAT it was that had to stop, everything in my life was a mess, but it just all had to change, and my drinking was obviously at the heart of so many of my problems somewhere. But I didn’t have a clue how to actually pull this off… not drinking. Everything I knew about stopping drinking was that I couldn’t do it. But I was wrong. I was wrong about so much when it came to alcohol. I thought drinking was fun… it wasn’t, those those days were long gone. Drinking had stopped being fun years ago. I thought if I tried harder I could control it, but I couldn’t. I thought drinking made me sociable, but it made me a fool. Alcohol actually had no redeeming qualities for me at all beyond the sense of relief I got on taking that first drink… from then on it was all bad news. But I still carried on drinking. In the end I drank, because I drank, because I drank. Regardless of what my head was saying there WAS no good reason to drink, but I did it anyway. But if you told me I had to stop then I would argue black is white that I didn’t need to. I was wrong about that too… I DID need to stop, I just couldn’t accept it, and I didn’t know how to do it even if I did.
I didn’t know it was possible to stop drinking… but it is; lots of people do it and the people that manage to stop drinking do not possess some strength of character, or some super-power that you do not. It requires a change of understanding that is all…. It IS possible. While I believed it was impossible then it remained so. No-one could climb Everest, it was impossible, until Hillary did it, then suddenly lots of people could do it. It became possible to stop drinking when I stopped telling myself it wasn’t.
I didn’t believe it was necessary… that if I tried hard enough I would be able to manage my drinking, but in the end I simply had to give way on this one. I could not keep my drinking to a reasonable level. It didn’t matter how earnest I was in my intention, if I started drinking I would carry on. I had to finally acknowledge that controlling how I drank was not an option. I couldn’t. So it was either carry on drinking, or stop completely… there was no middle path available to me. If I carried on drinking then all I could see was a descent into increasing blackness. As much as I recoiled from the idea, stopping drinking was the only survivable option.
Finally, I didn’t believe that stopping drinking was worthwhile, but in this my mind was lying to me. It seemed like if I stopped drinking then there would be no fun anymore, but really? was this fun? If it was so much fun then why did I think I had to stop? I was miserable, alone, anxious, restless and without hope that things would ever get better. None of that was fun and any change in this would be an improvement.
For me stopping drinking was necessary and it also turned out to be both worthwhile and possible, despite what I thought.
You are on your way now, and as long as you stay in touch with people here you are no longer alone in this. The people here understand what you’re going through and just how hard this is but it is sooo worth it.
Don’t drink for the rest of the day, that’s all you have to do. You can do this.
@clouisec I’m so happy you are here….this is a great opportunity to go AF for yourself and no one else. Doing this will help you be the healthy person you want and deserve to be and you will know you did all you could for your marriage as well. Just be focused on it for you…..when you get better everything will get better and you will have a whole new world. Again, I’m so happy for you! Looking forward to hearing your journey one day at a time. xoxoxox