After writing the post “It’s Just One Drink … Or Is It” I was contacted by a publisher who wanted to send me a copy of a book to review.
I have to admit that at first I was a little upset and offended that a complete stranger felt the need to label me, until I realized that I needed to be labeled and I needed to change my behavior. For the past few months I have caught myself drinking. I don’t intend to drink, in fact I intend NOT to drink, but end up adding ice to a glass and either making myself a Bloody Mary or a glass of wine … and then another … and sometimes, another one after that.
I have been slowly reading the book and it has made me realize that something needs to change. I’m not a full blown alcoholic yet, even though I used to be (drinking several drinks every single day), but I am sliding back into old habits of only picking restaurants with bars and having a drink or two on weeknights.
The book lists symptoms of being an “almost alcoholic” and I recognize myself in a few of them.
The difference between being an alcoholic and an almost alcoholic is a matter of degree. Here are five key signs that you or someone you know is almost alcoholic:
1. You continue drinking depsite at least some negative consequences.
2. You look forward to drinking.
3. You drink alone.
4. You sometimes drink in order to control emotional and/or physical symptoms.
5. You and your loved ones are suffering as a result of your drinking.
How I relate to the signs:
1. I do continue to drink despite negative consequences. I almost always feel like crap the day after I drink and I might fall asleep quickly after a few drinks, but I don’t sleep well and having horrible, very vivid dreams.
2. I don’t really look forward to drinking, but in spite of trying to stop, I find myself pouring a drink (especially on the weekends).
3. I NEVER drink alone.
4. I do drink to try to relax and try to relieve stress.
5. If I think that I need to reduce my drinking, then I am obviously suffering in some way.
It took a lot for me to write the first post. It took a lot for me to start reading the book. It takes a lot for me to continue to read the book and it will take even more for me to keep updating you on my progress.
I know that there are people who believe that once an alcoholic always an alcoholic. I personally don’t believe that and I don’t need anybody telling me that I am wrong. I realize that I need to work on this issue and negative attacks will NOT help me in my journey. I have faith that I will get this under control and find better, healthier ways to deal with stress and I appreciate any support you can give me.
To purchase the book: