I read this article a few years ago when I was in my early days of sobriety Man in the Netherlands euthanised due to his alcohol addiction. It’s about a man in Holland who chose assisted suicide over life because he could not stop drinking. The article didn’t really go into detail about his life except to say that he had been in and out of rehab 21 times and given up. His family had struggled with his choice of assisted suicide but in the end, they accepted it and were with him when he died. He had children who were adopted by his parents. He was in his forties I think.
This is such a dark subject and it is an extreme case, but it’s an important subject to talk about.
People drink themselves to death every day. Sometimes slowly over many years and sometimes quite suddenly. Sometimes they take other lives unexpectedly by driving drunk. We know this. It’s depressing but true. Most of us here, in this community, have not reached that stage of addiction and are here to prevent it. But somehow this man saying I give up, I’d rather die than live drunk, so I will get it over with now before things get any worse just makes me want to cry noooooooo….
Did you know that alcohol related deaths have doubled in the last 20 years?
That thought always makes me remember the sign I carried at the women’s march after the 2016 US presidential inauguration.
” We don’t trust you Prove us Wrong !”
I wanted to send my kids a positive message. I wanted to suggest the possibility that things might work out OK with the new government in my country if we asked nicely.
I am the eternal optimist!
And actually it is exactly that optimism about things turning out OK if we ask nicely, that kept me down the drain with alcohol for so long.
I remember how good it felt to drink. I absolutely loved drinking. I loved the warm glow after the first glass. I loved the super mental focus I had by the bottom of the first bottle. Exhausted from a long day but busy busy busy with my super mommy rocket fuel. And when I started drinking to oblivion a year or so before I finally stopped I loved that too. I loved the almost absolute void of sensation right before blackout. Like a dark velvet river I could simply float away to nothingness on. Felt nothing and cared about no one.
I did not love waking up at three AM hot and nervous, unable to get back to sleep until an hour before my alarm went off.
I did not love the bright red broken blood vessels that started popping out on my cheeks.
I did not love feeling bloated.
I did not love the worry or the fear or the shame or the regret
The blackouts finally did me in…because for me as a mother…the one thing I could not accept was being truly absent in the presence of my kids. There but not there. Conversations that I could not remember. Falling down the stairs…but not remembering. But why could this man in Holland NOT stop? Why did he choose death over a life of drinking..
There is a book that I didn’t like much because I found it depressing called Alcohol Lied to Me , but that is the problem of course.
It feels good to drink a bit, we want to feel good so we drink a bit more, the more we drink the more we need the drink to feel good. The after-effect of drinking too much is that we feel insecure, unhappy, unattractive, sleep-deprived, in pain…which makes us feel like crap….so we drink again to feel good. It can become an endless cycle which for many ends horrifically.
I know that some people can drink moderately and I’m happy for them. I think that’s just great.
But for those of us who can’t….please break the cycle before you get to the point where you can’t. Because life is actually …well it’s what we have…it’s all we have…and it’s worth coming up for air to see what you might like to do with it.
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If you’re drinking too much too often and want to stop or slow down, come talk to us.
Alcohol is the only drug that people question you for NOT using but you don’t HAVE to drink. Don’t stay trapped because the stigma of not drinking seems worse than the cost of drinking too much.
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