Getting through wine o’clock

Late afternoon is often the hardest time to avoid drinking. This Sober Toolbox is a space for sharing tips on how to beat cravings, and for discovering new techniques that have worked for others. If you're looking for more discussion, interactions and feedback, head inside our Members Feed. That's where the real-time conversations take place.

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1,316 Comments
  1. Jocord 2 years ago

    Day 10 today. This morning I’m watching an episode on addiction on The Drs. tv show. Good way to begin the day! The morning news reported that my county in conjunction with “Most teens don’t” program is placing a green sticker on every alcohol product in every store in the county. Wow, what a huge undertaking. And a great reminder to every alcoholic who goes into that store. I have to go grocery shopping today and walk right by the alcohol aisle. It must be God answering my plea for help to just stay sober today. One day at a time! I am grateful for this and all of you.

  2. Candy 2 years ago

    Today is May 1 2018 want to stop drinking wine usually drink 3 glasses white per night nasty habit I come from alcohol genes want to quit I think it causes terrible morning anxiety no other alcohol problem is I’m meeting Girlfriendat Beach (husband getaway LOL) what should I do should I try just one fancy Beach drink a day I know I can quit wine I’ve gone 45-50 days several times HELP if anyone can I just walked which takes away some anxiety I also have Xanax but don’t like to depend on it I also think wine robs me of precious sleep I work 3 days a week I am in my 60’s and a little person Thanks in advance

    • shrn 2 years ago

      Can-berry and soda water with lime works for me at times. Letting them know your not going to drink on this trip and need support : )
      Hugs, have a fun trip you can do it!!

  3. Josie 2 years ago

    I am on day 8 and through my first weekend. 🙂 My thoughts were similar to many comments in blogs which I’ve read. “Surf the cravings”, “why feel like crap in the morning for a couple of hours of buzz?”, “one minute at a time”, “this too shall pass”, “do something different”. So I am doing all these things to get through the usual happy hour time. I was worried about a cool, refreshing drink during the summer and found that tonic/cranberry juice is tart and sweet and refreshing. I pour a big glass of that over ice in a fancy glass and that seems to be satisfying my desire for something cold since I don’t drink pop but like the bite of alcohol. I make sure I eat early. I changed up my weekend by planning every minute of Friday night at home. Saturday I went out, but to church and then visiting non-drinking friends. Sunday, I picked up dinner right by our friendly liquor store and visited my mom. Now I know what to do every day of the week to stay sober. I just have to keep up the practice-and when that voice pops up to say “it’s the weekend, you deserve a reward”, I tell it “what kind of reward is a hangover?”. Icecream is better!

  4. Anonymous 2 years ago

    Hi Anonymous, I’m with you. On the 28th I had more than my usual bottle of wine. Me, my Husband and another couple shot back a bottle of birthday Tequila (hubbys birhday) I passed out at 7.30pm and woke up 12 hours later hazy but but not too bad. My husband then told me the the couple we were drinking with got in an argument and he hit her. They are a solid couple, he’s a fun guy with no anger that I’ve seen. It really hit home (sorry the pun) that drinking is affecting us all eventually and it’s only a matter of time. I don’t want rock bottom so I’m taking action today to say enough is enough. Just the action of writing this post helps put into focus my WHY. I’ve never done this before either (posting I mean) I’ve wanted and thought I should give up drinking but end up talking myself back into it saying I can have 1 glass a night which never lasts. Drinking is ingrained and woven into all social events so this will be hard. Stay strong anonymous, it will be worth it in the long run!

  5. Anonymous 2 years ago

    Correct address… Above is for wine.

    https://joinclubsoda.co.uk

  6. Isobel90740 2 years ago

    Going to the movies or to the gym helps lessen the happy hour cravings .

  7. isobel90740 2 years ago

    I find it hard not to drink on weekends. But since I cut back to no more than five drinks a week, it seems a bit easier to quit on the weekends. The longest I have quit drinking wine is a month

  8. Isobel Civen 2 years ago

    I just found about this website http://www.clubsoda.com ,and it helps me feel motivated to quit drinking wine. This website recommends taking a dry month in January and October , I am going to sign up for the January dry month .

  9. Anonymous 2 years ago

    Today was day 11 and the first time that I felt like I wanted to drink and smoke. If any of you are familiar, the conversation in my head was something to the effect of since I didn’t have any withdrawal symptoms I’m not really an alcoholic and really what harm would one cig be? Really had to distract myself with a bad movie and hot herbal tea and had a long conversation with myself about how if I wasn’t an alcoholic why am I 30 lbs overweight, bloated and hungover every day and reminded myself that my blood pressure was the highest it has ever been at the dentist’s office 3 weeks ago. Once I got through the first 15 minutes and settled myself down I was okay. I just don’t want to piss away the 11 days I have achieved this far and I don’t want to have to start again. My stubborn streak may have harmed me in the past but it is definitely helping with staying sober.

  10. Sal07 2 years ago

    Hello All. Day 1. Again. I recently read Mrs D is Going Without and it felt familiar, which lead me here. I’ve never joined an online group before. I come from a big drinking background. I work at a job I really like, I am happily married and also happily down a bottle of wine a night, sometimes more and occassionally less. I recently had 6 weeks not drinking and want to turn that into the rest of my life. So, to keep me on track, (and it would appear I need something to help with that because I have had numerous patches of not drinking – ranging from weeks to 1.5 years) I am hoping if I go ‘public’ here I can keep myself accountable and also hopefully share the whole non-drinking trip with others who are in the same boat. I am so tired of constantly doing battle with myself over drinking. I am tired of the energy and time and space it takes up in my life and my mind, and the effect it has on my body. For me, it seems to be easier to just not start. So, day 1 plan – join this forum, read some blogs, and be prepared to weather the couple of hours in the evening that are the hard ones for me. And be prepared to check in here again tomorrow…and able to say ‘Day 1 was a success’.

  11. Anonymous 2 years ago

    I can relate to many of you comments. I start off the day telling myself I won’t drink wine today and then by 5pm I’m craving ‘a glass’. It’s the period from 5pm to 7pm that I find the hardest. I like to drink three glasses during this period while I prep, serve and clean up dinner. If I can get through those hours without wine I feel like I have achieved a personal victory ! My partner absolutely hates me drinking and is very vocal about his feelings on the matter. Instead of considering this a reason to stop I just hide my behaviour from him. I need to stop.

  12. Anonymous 2 years ago

    That 5 o’clock drive home gets me every time. Every morning I wake up and say I’m not drinking today, but at 5 I pass that one store on the way and stop for wine. About once a week I can pass that store without stopping and I’m so proud of myself but the next day I cave, and everyday after that. Same on the weekends, what Can I do to pass the cravings?

  13. Anonymous 2 years ago

    I am not a day drinker at all….but at night after work or I sit down to relax for the eve I have a hard time resisting a glass of wine. It is almost like I will not let the thought go..then I become anxious….until I give myself that glass of wine. This is a psychological thing…what can I do to defy or ignore these thoughts or maybe cravings?.

  14. Anonymous 2 years ago

    Authentic, just curious what was the trigger that made you drink again after two amazing years sober. Why?

  15. Anonymous 2 years ago

    This is my first day of admitting I have a problem and I have to stop drinking. I had a glass of wine while cooking dinner and then another during and then another after. Then another with desert. I woke up to a mostly empty bottle of champagne, I don’t remember opening and a nasty hangover. I realized I’ve been upping my consumption over time, which led to this. I have no idea why and I don’t know how to talk to husband about it. I’m completely lost.

  16. authentic 2 years ago

    Yay day one done and dusted. Interesting just being back on this site reminds me of how much I loved the two years I didn’t touch alcohol…feel the urge to surpass the two year mark this time

  17. Anonymous 2 years ago

    Day 1 down. I read a lot of the comments yesterday. Are we all pretty much women on this blog? And if so, is it wine that we all seem to go to? How did you get here?

    My story is simple: I started hanging out with moms who drank, and it just seemed to morph from there. The Friday night glass turned into the Weekend, then crept into every day life. I’m not going to give it up, but I am going to severely change this habit.

    • Fifthrain 2 years ago

      Hey Anonymous – it appears that there are more women than men in this community but there are definitely men out there. I am on day 18 and have quit for extended periods of time (up to 9 months) in the past to prove to myself that I didn’t have a problem (like my mother). Giving it up for good this time for my health and my two amazing daughters and beautiful wife.

  18. Anonymous 2 years ago

    I love what you wrote – I think I need to do the same.

  19. Anonymous 2 years ago

    Going into my 6th day without booze by default, really. Got a horrible cold that turned into a sinus infection and frankly just felt too sick to drink or smoke so I decided to take advantage of that and dedicate myself to going the distance. I’ve needed to quit both for a loooong time. On antibiotics until next Friday but feeling well enough to go back to my normal M-F routine tomorrow which always includes 3 glasses of wine and 3-5 beers and 3-5 cigs at the end of the day. Dreading the after work time frame as well. Thinking some cardio at the gym and planning and cooking a healthy dinner and going to bed early might work. My husband doesn’t really know the extent of the booze, hid the wine drinking so I haven’t said anything to him about my plans, just letting it happen.

  20. Carolyn Todd 2 years ago

    Amen girl

  21. Anonymous 2 years ago

    Dear Anonymous,
    Your story sounds very familiar. I am 57 and have quit smoking for 2 years now. I have quit the wine for 5 days today. Like yourself I am overweight and summer is here. All the best to you and my prayers are with you. Today was a terrible day for me as Friday is the night for wine.. ** well any night is ) driving by the lcbo was difficult.. my saying now is ” Look at the whole story, get wine tonight.. drink.. pass out.. black out.. wake up in the morning hungover now wanting to do anything.. ” I decided the whole story has been my life for awhile.. “Look at the whole story” before you buy that wine.. All the best to you

  22. Anonymous 2 years ago

    I am new here, 9 days sober but who is counting 😉 Wine o’ clock is the only time of day I really struggle with cravings. I have been changing the word “drink” to “poison” in my head to get through those urges. I feel like having some poison right now. Then I tell myself, “I don’t drink because I can’t control it, it’s crazy to drink poison” I also remind myself how good I’ll feel tomorrow after I stay sober today.

  23. Anonymous 2 years ago

    Exercise and fresh air.
    Praying.

  24. Anonymous 2 years ago

    One night sober, one to go. I don’t want to quit all together, but I would like to stop drinking during the week. It’s nice to see I am not alone. I hope I can do it this time.

    • Phaedra 3 months ago

      You are so not alone 🙂 If you are looking for something to read or listen to, may I recommend Allen Carr’s “The Easy Way to Control Alcohol” ?

  25. Anonymous 2 years ago

    Hi Y’all, I am about to turn 50 & I have graduated from one bottle of wine a night, to usually two.. I’ve become such a pro, it doesn’t make me problematic- oh, except I’m probably an extra 40lbs overweight from all the calories & this has been going on for 20yrs. So, the effects on my liver … not to mention the money… I have a happy, healthy-ish life, for the 1st time, ever & I want to be here, to enjoy it! Plus, as many of you know- cigarettes are delicious, with wine. I smoke about a pack a day & have, forever. It’s a miracle, I’m in such good health!
    SO, I haven’t quit yet, but it’s helping me, to hear others talk about wine:30.. THAT is my issue, for sure! I like the idea of a sparkling, mocktail at witching hour & am thinking, if I commit to a 5:30 yoga class, it’ll keep me off the sauce… I own a jewelry store & I work likw a dog,.. oddly, it’s acceptable for me to drink wine there, every night.. I need to just start leaving, I guess.. Anyway, I’m planning to quit, or cut back severely, for my birthday. Thanks for writing, y’all. Your posts are inspiring & encouraging. I am grateful.. Thank you, Barb

  26. Clairebear 2 years ago

    This is my first day on here. I am 10 days sober after a 5 day stay in hospital. I was sober for 7 years until 2011 and then lapsed and have been lapsing on and off ever since. I hit rock bottom a few weeks ago. I am ok but struggling with bad cravings from around 4.00pm. I also have terrible drinking dreams.

  27. Chickanini 2 years ago

    WOW its been AGES since I have logged on, been to a meeting or even thought about being a super sober sensation. 867 days the little calculator tells me I have been sober and 460 days smoke free. WOW. I do wish sugar was as easy, I have been doing an eating plan cleaning my gut but the sugar is proving to be the one addiction not so easy to give away, 5/7 times as addictive as cocaine, I beg to differ as I gave that up easily also. ANYWAYS, let me just put out a HIGH FIVE to those who have logged on; shared, tripped up, got back up, moved on, cried, laughed, had melt downs, jumped for joy, you are aware you are here and that is the BIG DEAL, recognising for you, that your drinking suggested you have a chat about things and then maybe do things around changing or stopping your drinking. ANYWAYS (I love anyways no not canadian), YOU ROCK I ROCK WE ALL ROCK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  28. Blackjelly 2 years ago

    This is my first day. My tolerance has increased and I can drink a bottle of wine and then some in the evening. I don’t wake with a hangover and function well at work. I have been down this road before so I know I am stronger and more confident when I don’t drink. I face my demons and the financial gains are real. When I do drink I am filled with anxiety and excuses. I read somewhere to treat the addictive brain separately from the intelligent brain. When the wine o’clock ding goes off in the head “think IT wants a drink” not I want a drink. My plan is to replace wine time with walk the dog time or treadmill time. I am so pleased I found this site. Thank you for the welcomes via email.

  29. Anonymous 2 years ago

    This is day 2 of sobriety i don’t know what to do. Im feeling really weird what is it.

    • Chickanini 2 years ago

      maybe do something else that you like to do, though if your weather is like ours here going out doors will be CHILLY…………………………… sit by the fire and read a book, try think possibly you are not giving up something you are changing it, instead of driving to work daily all you are doing now is catching the bus, Instead of adding 2 sugars to your coffee, had 1 or raw sugar, just doing things differently now, not giving something up, I reckon with anything you are making a change, NOT GIVING IT UP, just making a change, chocolate muffin instead of blueberry, mcleans instead of colgate, HOPT SODA from New World or start making the daily cocktails instead of your standard poison. Hey you will find what works for you……………………………. so want to say cheers when I sign off as I still do now with my non alcoholic drinks and buddies, all the best to you

    • LibbyB 2 years ago

      You’ve made a great decision. Alcohol is poison! You are feeling weird because your body is already starting to heal. I am in early days as well, I remember day 2. I consciously made the decision to stop drinking but was terrified I couldn’t do it. I took our dear bloggers advice, and bought and downloaded all I could on alcohol, and absorbed myself in it. I has really worked. Good luck and hang in there. Think of all your cells coming back to life. It will only get better.

  30. Anonymous 2 years ago

    New to this. My plan is to start exploring herbal teas and organise activities involving others that. Get me through late afternoon to early evening such as a walking group. I realise that happy hour is just a way to avoid processing the day and to find a ritual that is relaxing. Finding another ritual will be an important key.

    • Steph73 2 years ago

      You’re one day ahead of me. I dumped all my wine this morning. Woke up and knew it was time. It’s weird alright. I feel like I’m entering unchartered territory without a map. Scared and excited. What do you feel like?

  31. Anonymous 2 years ago

    So I did what needed to be done got my script for anti abuse today am waiting to take my first dose as I drunk last night. A step forward to sobrierty pretty scared but one day at a time. We got this

  32. soberchick 2 years ago

    I have decided to surf the wave during the cravings. It lasts apparently 30 minutes. Accept that the waves will come and then will have to fall. Cravings are temporary. Also I intend to write down feelings during the surfing experience and then the feeling of waking up sober the following day…this is my plan. I intend to do it every time I get a cravings…….

  33. AubreyMichelle 2 years ago

    I notice the craving and immediately label it: “cravingcravingcravingcraving….” which seems to embarrass it and it slinks back into the shadows. It’s also MUCH easier now that I’ve decided no for good, rather than 30 days or 100 days or whatever. I’m focusing a lot on the relief of feeling great rather than the shame I felt when drinking. Drinks with a bite like fizzy limeade really help too (tea just doesn’t cut it for me).

    And I’ve also agreed with my partner–and am telling my friends–that I will eat a pickle before I drink again. They also have permission to pour pickle juice in any drink I ever pour for myself again. I HATE pickles. I loathe and detest the things. Threats of cancer etc. only served to depress me while I drank, but the thought of pickle juice seems to be a highly effective form of aversion therapy!! 🙂

  34. LibbyB 2 years ago

    Im very new at this. That wineo’clock is a doozy. My coping mechanism, Im sure isn’t very original, but is working for now. I spent the equivilant of two bottles of wine on exotic teas. I make a pot of a sweeter blend and keep sipping to keep my mouth busy for as long as it takes to work through it. Its hydrating too.

  35. Anonymous 2 years ago

    It helps me to write too. Just to get my feelings out. Also, glad to have found this site. I didn’t know how to live sober.

  36. RiseAgain 2 years ago

    Keep your head up!! My family are all big drinkers and I am trying to stop. It is day one for me also. I am scared but I know what needs to be done. I am ashamed at the things I say to my family when I am drunk. We are all in this together!

  37. RiseAgain 2 years ago

    I feel your pain!! I am in the same boat. I had a huge blowout with my son last night and said many terrible things. I am in bed crying right now. I really want to change. I am sick of the depression, anxiety, shame, and worthlessness. I feel today is the day to toast (sparkling water) to a new life. It’s fitting after Easter Sunday’s.

  38. Anonymous 2 years ago

    What training app did you use?

  39. Liza 2 years ago

    A training plan for regular exercise, especially if it’s for an event (e.g 10km or half-marathon) helps to break the habit. I discovered this by lucky chance, in that I set myself a goal & downloaded an app to help plan my training, then on ‘training days’ I realised I was motivated to achieve the plan & didn’t think about ‘not drinking’. It felt normal instead of being a big deal on my mind all day. It has given me new confidence, and on those days I have more energy & sleep better. I still drink a few days a week, but this perspective is giving me the confidence to tackle the idea of being increasingly alcohol free.

  40. Anonymous 2 years ago

    Thank you for those comments. This is Day 0. Your ideas resonate with me. Keep them coming!

  41. Anonymous 2 years ago

    I start craving my wine when I’m making dinner. So I have changed things up a bit and I order out or make something simple for the family so I’m not tempted to cook and drink. I run a bath and soak. It makes me very relaxed. Then it’s settle in time and it really helps diminish the craving.

  42. Clawd 2 years ago

    I am forcing myself to exercise during witching hour which is minimising all cravings dramatically. Only 1 week into sobriety so very low on energy by the afternoon but if you can force yourself out the door and out of your head I’m finding it a useful strategy.

  43. Anonymous 2 years ago

    After being sober a few days now, the sleeping nights are so restful and rejuvenating. The anxiety is far less than it used to be. Blood pressure is starting to normalize after the wild swings. A relaxing feeling is the best feeling.

  44. Anonymous 2 years ago

    Im on day 3 too.

  45. Anonymous 2 years ago

    Im on day 3 today its been a very long time since ive gone more than a day without. So glad to know theres others out there in the same boat im finding the head addiction the hardest def staying busy is helping. Good luck

  46. Anonymous 2 years ago

    My longest sober stretches getting through wine o clock were about staying hydrated. Not getting hungry. Not isolating and keeping my thoughts in perspective to stop spiralling. x

  47. Anonymous 2 years ago

    Today is the first day in a long time I am going to bed sober, I am feeling excited about moving forward without awful alcohol in my life, I also say things I regret when I’ve been drinking and don’t want to do it anymore, they say it takes 40 days to break a habit which really is not a long time, one day at a time and prayer is so important for total healing, one step at a time we can all get through this we can start by trying and remember you are not alone millions are fighting addition try someone close to you that can help motivate you, stay away from negativity and bad thoughts focus on the good around you

  48. Anonymous 2 years ago

    keep coming here. I have been on and off this site since it started.the longest I have stayed sober was 1 year, but I keep coming back and keep trying . I’m 3 weeks sober now and feeling strong .good luck

  49. Anonymous 2 years ago

    This is my 1st day on this sight.
    I am an everyday drinker. And I drink a huge amount everyday.
    I am ashamed of myself, I have put on 30kg in the past few years (all sugar) from alcohol.
    I am treating my loved ones badly when Ive had too many
    I have really bad anxiety
    I have negative thoughts
    I cry a lot (like as Im writing this)
    All of my friends, family and household are drinkers and I dont know what to do about this…
    I need to stop drinking as Im scared its going to kill me, and hope that this sight may help a bit

    • Anonymous 2 years ago

      Hi are things going better now? Can we help in any specific way?

  50. rangimarie 2 years ago

    I tell myself that there are 24 hours in the day, and its actually only 4 hours of that day that I used to drink, so in the first week I just told myself “all you have to do is get through 5-9pm and then you’ve made it!”
    I try to eat close to when i get home, because I always found that I delayed eating so I could drink more and I used to eat around 8.30pm. Now I try and eat before 6.30pm, even if I have to buy dinner.
    I make myself a refreshing cool drink of soda water and a bit of cranberry juice with ice and sip it.
    I read as much as I can about other peoples successful sober stories, because it reminds me that this is what I really really want and that the pain I experience now in the beginning won’t last forever and that I will never regret being sober in the long run!
    I try to go to bed early and feel grateful for mostly good night sleeps and guilt free wake ups in the morning!

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