Posted by: Melly | 2007/11/28

Alcohol Abuse

Hi CS,

I have tried reading up about alcohol abuse and cannot understand if I'm abusing or depending on alcohol. I'm 27, and to be honest I have been drinking every single day of my life for 3 and half years now. I must add that I must have not drunk about 10 days out of that. This is how long my spouse and I have been together and he has also been drinking non-stop for all this time.

My drink of choice is red wine. I have about 3-5 glasses of wine a night. Weekends I would start with some ciders and then onto wine. I have spoken to my spouse about this as my father is an alcoholic and is at this moment going through a very bad stage in his life. I dont want to follow in his footsteps and want to nip this in the butt if it is becoming a problem. My spouse thinks I'm over reacting and if I decide not to have a glass of wine with my supper, he would usually coax me into having a glass (or two) saying I dont have a problem.

Lately I have been waking up with tremors, which I always saw my dad have in the morning. But I don’t fix that with a drink. I don’t drink at work functions at all – I’ve always had this rule, but however when I get home I would most certainly pour myself a glass of wine.

Is this social drinking? Am I dependant on alcohol? Or do I have a problem?


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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink

Hi Melly,
You know, I think it should be considered to be one of the diagnostic signs of substance abuse, especially regarding alcohol, that the person gets hung up on definitions and long debates about whether or not they have a problem. If you need to think that long and hard about it --- you have a problem. Non-stop drinking is not good for one's mental or physical health. A family history of alcoolism significantly raises the risks to you. The pattern and amount of drinking you describe surely sounds like problem drinking. What would happen if you had, for some external reason to do without any alcohol at all for a week ?
And to have a spouse who also drinks heavily AND persuades and pressures you to keep drinking when you pause, is a further risk factor. And waking with tremors is not at all a re-assuring sign.
You would be far healthier in every way without alcohol, or with only the very occasional drink, if you could limit it to that ; and so would your spouse

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Our users say:
Posted by: Ex alcoholic | 2007/11/28

So Sindi, 3-5 glasses of wine a night is just a social drinker in your opinion? I'd love to hear your definition of a heavy drinker!

Melly - the red lights should be flashing big time. And by telling you that you don't have a problem, your husband is enabling himself to keep drinking. Get help before its too late - you already have a problem. I've been there, take it from someone who has been in this very dark place (and I drank even less than you and also less frequently - I could go without a drink for months at a time.) Don't do it to yourself - life free from alcohol is just so much better. It won't be easy but believe me its worth it.

Reply to Ex alcoholic
Posted by: Sindi | 2007/11/28

Hi Melly.

Would you be able to not drink anything for say a week? If not if you just 'have to have it', then I suppose there is a problem that you will have to address before it becomes worse. At this stage it sounds to me like you are just a social drinker, but if you try and not have anything for a while and you just cannot do it, that's when the red lights should be flashing!!
Good luck!

Reply to Sindi

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