I got the idea for this post from member @citygirl. She wrote a fabulous update in the Members Feed when she reached her magnificent 110 days sober.
Here’s what she wrote: “Becoming sober has been one of the best decisions I have ever made. I am re-reading Mrs Ds book at the moment, after I read it the first time I had a period of moderation where my rules were: no more than one glass of red wine (don’t like red) per night and only after the kids went to bed. I was so happy that I was successfully moderating and that I wasn’t like Mrs D and that I didn’t have to give up totally. I did tell myself though that if I did go back I would have to get help. I had told myself that in the past but had just ignored it. I did eventually go back to a nightly bottle of white or copious G&Ts. One night after drinking wine out of a mug I decided enough was enough, I was ready and determined to save my life, a place I had never been before. I had worried for years about my drinking, hated the guilt, hated how I was when drinking, hated the money spent, hated the hangovers – there was so much to hate but for some reason I was never ready to face the reality that I had a problem and do something about it. This time was different, I joined this site, not entirely sure what would happen or what I would do. I saw that many members had given up entirely, and finally was honest with myself that I could not moderate and I needed to give up too. The first few weeks were horrible, I was grumpy, stressed and felt awful, but each day I knuckled through and day by day it got easier. I am so grateful for Mrs D for planting the sober seed, grateful that something inside me enabled me to stop and the seed was germinated and grateful for this community for watering and tending each and every day so that my sober seed may grow and flourish. X”
I love so much about her update. Her happiness at being sober, her honesty at how hard it was at first but how she slowly grew stronger, and her love our our very special community here at Living Sober.
But it was her mention of her moderation rules (“no more than one glass of red wine per night and only after the kids went to bed”) that really got me thinking. How many of us have had rules around our drinking…??!!! Setting ourselves limitations or boundaries that we had to abide by. Desperately trying to moderate and control our booze intake. I know I have.
I’d try to not drink on week nights. Except I’d convince myself that Thursday was ok because that’s the beginning of the weekend… it is isn’t it…???!!!
I’d try to not drink after the dinner mess was cleaned up. I’d tell myself that my wine glass had to go in the dishwasher with the plates and cutlery. My solution to that one would be to take f.o.r.e.v.e.r to tidy up the mess! Or leave it until the morning ha ha.
I’d tell myself I was only allowed to buy one bottle of wine for Mr D and I to share of an evening (and would get grumpy if he drank much at all). This one never stuck, often I’d run down the road (the bottle shop was close) to buy more once the first bottle had been finished. It was never enough…..
Oftentimes I’d try a mammoth ‘rule’ and take an entire month of drinking – to lower my tolerance I’d say. By week 3 I’d often be telling myself that was long enough.
Sigh. How exhausting.
Yet another marvellous aspect of getting sober = NO MORE RULES!!!!!
I don’t think ‘normal’ drinkers ever impose rules on themselves to attempt to moderate and control their intake. Just us boozers. What about you? What rules did you ever impose on yourself to try and control your booze?