Were you offered a bottle of wine as a gift for International Women’s Day? Specialty wines made for women, and made by women are all the rage. Women are celebrated as influencers in the wine industry, but according to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (2020), alcohol is killing us. As recently as 2017, there was an 85% increase in alcohol-related deaths in women in the USA alone. I shudder to think of the thousands of women who have died, world-wide as a direct result of alcohol.
Alcohol abuse is a problem that affects both men and women, but women’s bodies metabolize alcohol differently. Alcohol hits us quicker and stays in our systems longer. Due to this, women are at a higher risk of liver cirrhosis, cognitive decline and brain shrinkage, breast and other cancers, depression, anxiety, and last but definitely not least – an increased risk of sexual violence.
Alcohol is not a benign substance – So with all of these statistics and much more that are extremely accessible on the interwebs – why are women continuing to kill themselves with alcohol?
Is it the pressure that women have on them nowadays? The pressure to play house and tend to the children and keep the full-time job and volunteer at the school and go on the playdate, and at the end of a long tiresome day, have sex with our husbands, all with a smile on our faces? Is it because the village that once existed to help raise our children, has somehow been eradicated in today’s society? Is it because it’s what society tells us to do? Is it because somewhere along the way, we ran out of healthy coping mechanisms and never found our way back? Is it because mummy’s wine time has become a secret that we don’t talk about because we accidentally got addicted to an addictive substance?
Whatever the reason, it needs to stop. Women need to help each other get out from under the weight of thinking we need to drink ourselves numb.
Addiction to alcohol is a pandemic that no-body is talking about, and it is killing millions. The stigma around alcoholism is so dangerous, it prevents women from reaching out, in fear that we’ll be seen as bad parents, bad wives, bad employees- bad people in general. The normalization of binge drinking, of alcohol use and abuse, is so embedded and accepted in today’s society – we fear sobriety. Once we accept the label alcoholic or say that we are sober, we are either seen as other or we are told that we don’t have a problem and that we are fine to continue drinking.
I think it’s really important to break the stigma around alcohol addiction, especially in women.
How do you Stop Drinking ? How do you move on to Gain Sober Momentum?
1) There is no right time, The time is now.
If your waiting for a feeling for it to be the right time, you’ll be stuck where you are now for years.
A Lazy Girls Guide to Sober Momentum
It has been 100 days since I decided to cut alcohol out of my life for the last time. I had a slip but it didn’t derail my momentum. That slip served to show me why I broke up with alcohol and why the simple, wake up, not drink, sleep, repeat program is the only one I need. Before I stopped drinking, I felt like I was trapped – a bug that unwittingly gets stuck in one place forever as the tree sap flows over it, then slowly hardens to amber; my life was grinding to a halt before my eyes and I felt powerless to change it until…you guessed it, I stopped taking that first drink. Moderation for me is a constant negotiation and power struggle and after one drink, I always lose.
I AM Enough
My favorite thing about gaining momentum in early sobriety is that I don’t have to do anything. I don’t have to improve myself or hustle or repent or be a perfect example or make up for all of my mistakes. There is nothing wrong with any of those things, but I don’t HAVE to do them. What I do have to do is not drink today. Then sleep. Then wake up and not drink today, ad infinitum. That and that alone is sober momentum, the building of sober moments merely by being – being you, not drinking. Which is enough, by the way.
This isn’t to say alcohol-free you will never want to learn something new, improve your health, take up old hobbies and spark passions, or dig deep and rediscover yourself. You will absolutely have to learn to live without a major depressant, crutch, and mood destabilizer in your system, and that takes work. You may decide to spend some energy helping others find and hold their sober rope after you take hold of your own. You will probably find yourself with more energy, time, calories, and money to spend however you like, but please remember – especially in those early days – simply putting one foot in front of the other and not drinking is the momentum, it is the task at hand, and it is undoubtedly some of the most important work you will ever do.
It’s still early days for me and I have to keep reminding myself that the real and vitally important work of continuing to build my sober momentum comes before the rest of my to-do list. I’ll branch out one day, I know, but until I am ready, I just won’t drink and then I’ll sleep, and then I’ll wake up and do it again.
I AM Enough
If alcohol wins your dialogue remains about drinking forever… to drink or not to drink… the spotlight stays on that question for the rest of your life Think about it – for how many days- for how many years – have you been struggling with the need to drink less- struggling with the need to stop – saying I’ll stop soon- I’ll stop when the moment is right – If YOU win it is because you throw out the alcohol and start focusing on the question of you
Do not underestimate the power of peoples stories to help set you free
Do not underestimate the power of sharing YOUR story in return
Change your narrative. How Posting in the BOOM Community can help you Rethink the Drink
When you take the alcohol out of the picture the story becomes about YOU not about alcohol
Rethink the Drink !
If you’re “sober curious” … If you are drinking too much too often and want to stop or take a break…or if you have stopped drinking and are trying to stick to sober! Talk to Us.
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Don’t let the shame of the stigma keep you from saying
“I think I have a problem with drinking”